Law Offices of Paul Levin - March 2018

LAW NEWS MARCH 2018

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A CASE THAT Defines Our Firm After being confronted with the medical malpractice, the chief of general surgery at the hospital began altering the medical reports associated with the case. With the help of the transcription department, the hospital changed several substantial details that adjusted the story in their favor. What ensued was an absolute war. Not just a war of words, either. The hospital slandered our team, consistently filed dismissals, and personally went after us. But there was no backing down, and we didn’t give an inch. We were determined to fight for our client, not just because of the

M edical negligence is a serious matter. When you have major procedures done, you want to have supreme trust in your doctor and their ability to safely operate on you. When we had the opportunity to help someone in a medical malpractice case, we put the gloves on and went to fight.

cruelty involved, but because of her character. Our client wasn’t driven by money or personal gains. She just wanted answers. When you hurt one of our clients and then try to cover it up, you’re going to get the full force of our firm. That’s exactly how we approached court. After going twelve rounds and beyond, the jury found negligence against the chief of general surgery and the hospital. They also ruled that the doctor acted in an untruthful manner in her post-surgical conduct and breached her fiduciary

“WHEN YOU HURT ONE OF OUR CLIENTS AND THEN TRY TO COVER IT UP, YOU’RE GOING TO GET THE FULL FORCE OF OUR FIRM.”

Our client was faced with the unfortunate struggle many women face — breast cancer. After having a doctor inspect a lump on her breast, she needed a biopsy. Our client is an incredibly strong woman, but like anyone in this scenario, she was terrified of the possibility of what the lump would mean. She gave consent to operate and remove the tumor for a biopsy in hopes of good news. But the fear of cancer was just the beginning of the traumatic experience.

duty to the patient by adjusting the medical record in favor of the hospital. The hospital attempted to argue that they had simply edited the original report to reflect what had actually happened, not to change the records in their favor. The jury saw straight through it. We fought the whole way, side by side with a client who shared our passion for justice. We saw it as not only fighting for her, but also for the millions of other women who battle breast cancer every day. When we finally got an admission, we knew that the fight had been worthwhile. Our motto is “Serious injuries deserve serious experience.” That’s why we’re proud of our firm. We follow our motto with passion and veracious representation. This case is a great example of that. –Paul Levin & Kelly Kasheta

After the biopsy, it was discovered that our client had the wrong area operated on, and in fact the lump that was intended for the biopsy wasn’t removed at all. The nursing staff had committed a critical error when they marked the wrong area for operation. Not only did our client not receive any answers about what her lump meant, but no one would tell her how it happened. The National Cancer Institute estimates that 40,610 women died of breast cancer in 2017. The emotional distress anyone endures when faced with the possibility of a cancer is enough. But to have to endure a painful procedure only to end up with more questions and more fear is negligence in its worst form. The negligence didn’t stop there.

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The start of spring brings everyone’s favorite seasonal chore — spring cleaning! As you dust, vacuum, organize, and declutter, don’t forget about the one room that often gets neglected. This year, give special attention to the utility closet. The utility closet houses your furnace, boiler, water heater, A/C junction, and other similar large appliances. Homeowners often forget about these appliances because they are out of sight and out of mind, and this can cost a lot in the long run. Like all the other rooms in your home, this space needs to be kept clean. Dust, for instance, can be hard on HVAC systems. Over time, it accumulates in the HVAC intake and clogs the air filter, reducing its effectiveness and efficiency. This results in a short lifespan for your system, higher power bills, and a poorly heated or cooled home. How Often Should You Replace Your Air Filter? • Homes with minimal foot traffic (single or double occupancy) and no pets or allergies: 6 to 12 months. DON’T FORGET TO CLEAN THE HEART OF YOUR HOME The Importance of Spring Cleaning Your Utility Room

• Family homes (three or more occupants) with no pets or allergies: 3 to 6 months. • Family homes with at least one pet or minor allergies: 2 to 3 months. • Family homes with multiple pets or allergies: 1 to 2 months. In addition to changing the air filter, it’s important to schedule a routine inspection of your home’s HVAC system. This includes an inspection of the appliances themselves and any connecting ducts. Dust, dander, and mold can accumulate in the ducts and spread throughout the home, which can lead to health issues, including respiratory problems. A routine inspection will identify potential problems in your HVAC system. On top of that, you can get these systems professionally cleaned and maintained. These are simple steps that will keep your home’s air systems running smoothly for years to come. Plus, you’ll be ready for the summer months ahead!

Why Our Victories Mean Something to Us

IT’S NOT ABOUT VICTORY; IT’S ABOUT CHANGE

In 2011, we had a case where a Department of Transportation employee lost part of her leg in an on-site accident while working in the back of a dump truck. Our client was getting the truck ready for winter snow operations when her boot was caught in a moving conveyor chain, causing irreparable damage. When we examined the events, we saw a high degree of negligence, and the decision to fight for her was a no-brainer. Disregard The defense stated our client ignored a danger decal warning not to be in the vicinity while the dump chain was in motion. While this was true, the real disregard was by the manufacturer and dealer. In many cases, the dealer would frequently access the dump truck and casually inspect the chain while it was in motion. They also stored tools there and disregarded other potential safety issues. Lack of Compliance With Industry Standards After careful examination, many of the industry standards required by the dealer were not upheld. Training was either improperly done or not done at all. The severe lack of oversight resulted in multiple OSHA violations that ultimately cost our client her leg.

Verdict The verdict was returned in favor of our client. In addition, the DOT was required to implement a series of heightened administrative controls. While we won the case, the lasting impact we were able to make on their policies was the highlight. People need to feel safe going to work, and that starts with proper protocols being in place. This case helped set a precedent for employers to make sure that their workers are operating in environments that promote excellence. That can’t be accomplished if people feel unsafe in their workplace. Our case inspired change that will make people safer, and that’s the ultimate victory.

Attorneys Paul Levin & Kelly Kasheta

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TAKE ACTION ON YOUR RECALL NOW Are You a Victim of Negligence?

Hundreds of thousands of vehicles have been recalled already this year, leaving many Americans wondering if it is safe to drive their cars. Horror stories of airbags spontaneously exploding, cars randomly turning off while operating, and even coolant leaks causing vehicles to catch fire have been hitting the news for months. It’s important to know that if you’ve run into issues with a recall recently, you are not helpless. When an automaker puts an unsafe vehicle on the streets, they are responsible for manufacturing defects. When a faulty part comes to their attention, it is their obligation to issue a recall. If they don’t, they may be liable for accidents caused by the defective parts. One important point is that manufacturers don’t always actively advertise their recalls. The publicity revolving around a recall is harmful for many automakers, so they will attempt to fly under the radar by not announcing it. This leaves the onus on you to find out if your vehicle

has a recall on it or not. If a manufacturing defect causes an accident and there was a recall already in place for the part that caused the accident, then the owner may hold some liability if he or she is aware of the recall and ignores it. Recalls have become more an unfortunate reality recently, and it is not uncommon for the same vehicle to have multiple recalls in a year. The reality of taking cars back to the dealership this often is such a burden on some car owners that they eventually elect to ignore the recall completely. Not only does this riddle our streets with unsafe cars but it also leaves the owner at risk. Our team at the Law Offices of Paul Levin takes all automotive defect cases seriously. There are laws in place to protect you from both manufacturer and owner negligence. Sometimes manufacturers aren’t even aware of defects until a lawsuit is filed. This means by simply starting the process, you could be saving other people from potential harm. Contact us today because serious injuries deserve exactly what we provide: serious experience.

Jack? Jack and Kelly are a certified therapy dog and handler team with “Healers With Halos Therapy Dogs.” Jack is a 5-year-old rescue collie, adopted from Collie Rescue of the Carolinas. He is also a certified Reading Education Assistance Dog, and has attained his CGC title from the American Kennel Club. Jack works many venues, bringing comfort and happiness to the young and old. Where’s

and

BRAISED CHICKEN

SPRING VEGETABLES

Ingredients • 1 tablespoon olive oil • 8 small bone-in chicken thighs • 1 cup low-sodium chicken broth • 12 radishes, halved

• 4 large carrots, cut into sticks

• 1 tablespoon sugar • 2 tablespoons fresh chives, chopped • Salt and pepper

Instructions

1. Heat olive oil in a large saucepan or Dutch oven over medium-high heat. 2. Season the chicken with salt and pepper. Brown in pan for 6 to 7 minutes per side. 3. Remove chicken from pan and scrape off excess fat. Add broth and stir in radishes, carrots, and sugar. 4. Return chicken to pan, placing on top of vegetables. Gently simmer with lid on pan for 15 to 20 minutes. Finish with chives.

JACK VISITING THE VETERAN’S HOSPITAL IN ROCKY HILL, CT

Recipe inspired by Real Simple

Attorneys Paul Levin & Kelly Kasheta

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40 Russ Street | Hartford, CT 06106 (860) 560-7226 www.connecticutinjuryhelp.com Inside THIS ISSUE • Our Passion for Justice • Spring Clean Your Utility Room • We Fight for More Than Just Winning,We Fight for You

What Automotive Recalls Mean For Your Safety Braised Chicken and Spring Vegetables

St. Patrick’s Day vs. the Color Green

A Newsletter for Clients and Friends from Attorneys Paul Levin and Kelly Kasheta

GREEN DOMINATES FOR A REASON St. Patrick’s Day Why Green Is the Color of St. Patrick’s Day

There’s only one day of the year you’ll be scorned for not wearing green: St. Patrick’s Day. If you’ve ever gone the whole holiday wearing any other color, you’ve probably been pinched by your peers, family, spouse, and anyone else decked out head to toe in green. Green has become so deeply associated with the St. Patrick holiday that many people are unaware that green wasn’t always its official color. Blue was the first color to symbolize St. Patrick’s Day, and the saint himself is almost always depicted dressed in what’s known as “St. Patrick’s blue.” What caused the shift from green to blue is more speculation than hard fact. Some have theorized that the change happened sometime in the 17th century, when the symbol for the United Irishmen Rebellion became the clover. St. Patrick used the clover to teach the Irish people about the Holy Trinity, and it eventually became a symbol that represented both the saint and the holiday.

the country’s landscape. It also relates to the green in the flag. Each of the three colors in the flag have their own

symbolic meaning: green for the Catholics who live in the country, orange for the Protestants, and white for the peace between the two.

Of course, you can’t forget leprechauns, the little creatures that have always been affiliated with the holiday. But just like St. Patrick’s original blue garb, these impish tricksters used to wear red instead of green. While green overtook blue as the shade of choice for St. Patrick, leprechauns began putting on their signature green suits. You might wonder where the tradition of pinching comes from. We can thank the leprechauns for this one. It’s said that if the gold-loving redheads caught you not wearing their favorite color, they would pinch you. To avoid pinches from leprechauns and people alike, be sure to put on some green this St. Patrick’s Day to blend in with the festive crowd.

Another theory comes from Ireland’s nickname, “The Emerald Isle,” which was coined because of the plentiful green foliage that adorns

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