Connecticut Hospital Ordered to Pay Medical Malpractice Victim $12 Million

Surgical ErrorDanbury Hospital has been ordered to pay $12 million to the victim of a botched surgery which occurred in 2008, according to recent reports. The patient, 65-year old Vivian Gagliano, was undergoing a routine hernia operation when the surgeon performing the procedure punctured her colon, causing her to go into a coma and eventually requiring the removal of most of her large intestine.

In 2010, Gagliano filed suit against the hospital and two of its doctors, alleging that they failed to recognize the damage they’d done until after closing the surgical area, causing Gagliano to suffer infection and septic shock which endangered her life and led to the drastic step of organ removal. The jurors took only 3 ½ hours to deliberate before finding in favor of the plaintiff.

At the Law Offices of Paul Levin, we know how difficult it can be to recover from the effects of medical malpractice. Therefore, we make it our mission to help malpractice victims fight for justice. Contact our offices at 860-560-5302 to learn more about how we can help you if you have been the victim of a medical professional’s mistake.

14 Injured in Connecticut School Bus Accident

Bus AccidentA school bus crash on May 28th in Greenwich has left 14 people injured, including the driver of the bus. The bus, which was carrying students from The Stanwich School, was operated by a 74-year-old driver who, while driving on Stanwich Road, swerved for reasons which have yet to be identified, causing the bus to hit a large tree on the side of the road.

The bus driver’s compartment saw the brunt of the impact, and the driver was taken to a nearby hospital in order to treat serious but non-life threatening injuries. Some students on the bus also suffered injuries, including broken bones in a few cases, and thirteen had to be taken to hospitals nearby in order to receive treatment for their injuries.

Bus accidents can have serious consequences for injury victims, and at the Law Offices of Paul Levin, we understand how important it may be for accident victims to get compensation for their resulting losses. If you have been injured in a bus or other automotive accident in Connecticut, contact us today at 860-322-5302 to learn more about how we can help.

Suzuki Recalls More than 180,000 Vehicles

Steering ColumnSuzuki has issued a recall for 184,244 cars in the U.S. after a potential problem with the steering column in these vehicles came to light. Specifically, the headlamp switch or daytime running light module in these vehicles has a problem with overheating, which can eventually cause it to melt and cause the left side of the steering column to catch fire.

The problem relates to a similar recall issued earlier in the week by General Motors, which also was involved in the production of these vehicles. Two different parts suppliers, Woochang in South Korea and Hamsar Diversco in Canada, were responsible for manufacturing the defective headlamp switches and daytime running light modules, respectively.

The recall will affect a substantial range of Suzuki vehicles: all Suzuki Forenza models between 2004 and 2008 as well as all Reno models from 2005 to 2008.
At the Law Offices of Paul Levin, our dedicated legal team understands how devastating the consequences of vehicle defects can be. That’s why we make it our mission to provide the victims of automotive defects with the legal representation they need. Contact us today at (860) 322-5302 to learn more about how our dedicated legal team can help you.

Connecticut to Address Campus Sexual Assaults

Sexual AssaultIn the fall of 2013, students from the University of Connecticut filed a Title IX complaint alleging that the University had not properly handled reports of sexual assaults on the campus, part of a growing national trend of current and former students at the university level bringing awareness to the problem of sexual assault in college.

Though there is a national campaign to take the steps necessary to ensure that college sexual assault victims get the help and support they need, Connecticut is moving on its own to help fight this problem. Governor Dannel P. Malloy recently signed into law legislation that would require colleges to provide assault victims with free counseling services and written explanations of the school’s policies regarding sexual assault, and creates a resource team to review these policies at Connecticut colleges and make suggestions for improvements. Hopefully, this measure will force schools to start taking the problem of sexual assault more seriously and develop improved institutional responses.

Sexual assault and abuse is an extremely serious problem that cannot and should not be taken lightly, and at the Law Offices of Paul Levin, we work to help assault victims fight for justice. Contact us at (860) 322-5302 to learn more about what we can do to help if you have been the victim of sexual assault.

USDA Investigating Massive Beef Recall

Beef RecallOne of the largest recent recalls of tainted beef is under investigation by the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) after evidence emerged that a foreman at the ranch responsible for the recalled beef had been romantically involved with a government inspector.

The recall, which affects more than 9 million pounds of beef, was issued after evidence came to light suggesting that Rancho Feeding Corporation had processed cancerous cattle when government inspectors were not at the site. Federal investigators believe that Rancho purposefully purchased diseased dairy cattle in order to lower prices, hiding the evidence from investigators by trimming off diseased parts or placing fake seals of approval on the sick animals.

Criminal charges have already been decided – though not announced – against the former owners of Rancho Feeding Corporation. However, in a strange development, the USDA has also opened an investigation into an apparent romantic linkage between one of the investigators tasked with vetting the site and an employee of Rancho. Though the relationship has not yet been linked to the recall, the U.S. attorney’s office in San Francisco continues to investigate any possible ties it may have had.

The dedicated legal team at the Law Offices of Paul Levin understands the serious impact that tainted beef and other recalled products can have on consumer health and safety. That’s why we are committed to fighting for consumer rights in these circumstances. If you have been impacted by a recalled product, contact us today at (860) 322-5302 to learn more about how we can help.

Florida Court Reverses Medical Malpractice Caps

Medical MalpracticeFlorida’s Supreme Court recently issued a ruling overturning a state law imposing caps on the amount that medical malpractice victims’ families can recover for non-compensatory damages following the wrongful death of a loved one. While limited in nature, the ruling is part of a broader trend against caps for non-economic damages in medical malpractice cases across the country.

The Florida Supreme Court’s decision rests on a number of different issues that are shared in common by medical malpractice caps throughout the country. For one, the cap unfairly burdened families in which multiple individuals may have suffered losses because it effectively created a system in which a single plaintiff’s recovery for non-economic damages would necessarily be greater than situations in which multiple plaintiffs were involved.

Perhaps more importantly, however, the Court noted that in spite of promises to the contrary, the state’s cap on medical malpractice damages appeared to do little to check the increasing cost of medical malpractice premiums for doctors, with insurers instead largely pocketing the benefits for themselves. This finding is what has largely opened up a larger national debate on the validity and effectiveness of these measures.

At the Law Offices of Paul Levin, we understand how hard it can be to deal with the loss of a loved one as a result of medical malpractice or any other cause, and we are committed to helping families in this difficult situation. Contact us today at 860-322-5302 to learn more about what we can do to get you the help you need.

Ford Trucks to Be Recalled

TailLightsMore than 4000 Ford Trucks are set to be recalled after concerns about a software error impacting indicator lights when shifting from reverse to drive. The recall, which affects Ford F-250s, F-350s, F-450s, and F-550s built between September 13, 2013 and March 31, 2014 at the company’s Kentucky plant, will go into effect as soon as possible, with customers who have purchased one of these vehicles being informed via letter of the potential risk to their vehicle.

According to Ford, the problem was discovered at the plant that produced the vehicles, and to date, no accidents or injuries have been associated with the problem. However, in light of the serious issues that this particular problem has the potential to cause, motorists are recommended to respond to the recall letter as soon as possible in order to avoid any potential complications.

At the Law Offices of Paul Levin, our dedicated legal team takes seriously any and all cases of automotive defects, and we are always prepared to help those who have suffered harm as a result of these problems to pursue justice. Contact us today at 860-322-5302 to learn more about how we can help you.

Lawsuit against GM Helps Expose Vehicle Dangers, Prompts Further Investigation

After learning that their daughter Beth had been killed in a car accident in her Chevy Cobalt, Ken and Beth Melton decided to take action and file a lawsuit against the car’s manufacturer, GM. They hired reliable experts who confirmed the malfunction and which led to the disclosure of GM’s prior awareness of the defect and its failure to order a voluntary recall. The absence of effective oversight by the highly regarded National Highway Traffic Safety Administration in this particular instance where over a dozen similar reports of catastrophic vehicle failure was disregarded has also become evident. So How did the truth come out? It was the very Court system and the Trial Lawyers toiling in their work of seeking answers for a grieving family that brought this to light, resulting in a life saving recall and testimony before Congress.

Michael Smerconish at CNN stated, “We know what we know today only because of the Meltons’ pursuit of justice, their willingness to file a lawsuit. Our civil justice system, it’s often maligned. But, you know, it remains a great check on our free enterprise system. Often, it serves as a more vigilant force than the government itself.”

The clip in its entirety can be viewed here.

As Smerconnish noted, the next time you get a summons for Jury duty, consider the importance of that task instead of looking for ways to avoid the service. Its not only about the convenience any more than cases involving defective products or sub standard medical care is about the money due in compensation for what sometimes can’t even be measured adequately.

Contact the Law Offices of Paul Levin, today by calling (860) 560-7226 to learn more about this case or if you have any questions about how vehicle defects may have played a role in your accident.

Number of GM Vehicles Recalled Tops 3 Million

GM recently announced the recall of over 1.55 million SUVs, minivans, and sedans citing concerns with the vehicles’ airbags, seat belts, and brakes. This recall comes just days after the company announced the recall of approximately 1.6 million Chevy Cobalts and Pontiac G5s due to faulty ignition switches in the vehicles that could result in the vehicle suddenly losing power and airbags failing to deploy.

GM has faced considerable criticism regarding its recall of the Chevy and Pontiac vehicles, as evidence shows that the company received complaints about these vehicles as early as 2003 and failed to recall the vehicles for over a decade.

In Connecticut, case law suggests that a product seller has a duty to warn about a potential defect on a post sale basis. The failure to advise and perhaps conceal known potential defects affecting certain classes of cars may also give rise to liability for punitive damages under a recklessness theory pursuant to Conn. Gen Stat. Sec. 52-240b (http://cga.ct.gov/2011/pub/chap901.htm#Sec52-240b.htm). In Connecticut, like other civilized jurisdictions, people should not have to die before a product seller initiates an effort to warn consumers, even if a general recall may not be yet warranted.

If you or someone you love has suffered injuries because of a defective GM vehicle, you may be eligible for compensation. To learn more, contact Law Offices of Paul Levin today at (860) 560-7226.

Connecticut Cracks Down on Distracted Drivers

car accident lawyerNew laws have been passed in Connecticut in order to get tougher on distracted drivers. One law will raise fines and change distracted driving citations to a moving violation. The offense will now appear on your driving record, making it available to car insurance companies when they’re calculating the rates for your policy. The fines are a one-time fee, but it’s the insurance company’s ability to raise your rates that is designed to hurt your wallet and really discourage distracted driving. The second law makes it illegal for motorists to use their cell phones behind the wheel, including when they’re stopped at a light or in traffic. Both laws will go into effect on October 1st.

Cell phone usage is not the only distraction that can impair the ability to drive safely. Grooming, adjusting the radio, using a navigation system, and eating or drinking are also distractions that can endanger people on or near the road. Distracted driving is becoming an increasingly serious issue, especially considering that 387,000 people were injured and 3,331 people were killed in car accidents involving a distracted driver in 2011. The new laws were signed in the hopes of seeing a decrease in those numbers.

At the Law Offices of Paul Levin, we understand the dangers of distracted driving and the devastation it can cause. If you or someone you love was injured in an accident involving a distracted driver, contact us at 860-560-7226 to learn more about what we can do for you.