Collaborative Divorce: Allowing Spouses to End Their Union but not Their Respect for Each Other

Breaking up a marital union and a family through divorce can be a difficult and confusing time. While some spouses find themselves in a pretty straightforward divorce, where there is no disagreement at all on issues that may include child custody, child support, visitation rights, spousal support and division of properties and assets, some others, whose marital union has been marred by deceit, unfaithfulness and personal interests, end up battling it out and forcing what they want without consideration of their former partner’s rights. This kind of separation can only be settled in court where, besides leaving both spouses with greater pain, also increases each other’s bitterness towards each other. In addition, this type of divorce process will involve lawyers, a lot of time and costs, and court hearings which anyone can witness and where, in the end, all decisions will be made by a judge, whether these decisions are acceptable to both spouses.

In the middle of the two situations mentioned above are spouses who may not be able to agree on everything but are willing to work together to come to agreements outside of court. For these spouses, a collaborative divorce procedure may be a good way to settle their divorce.

Collaborative divorce is the process wherein divorcing spouses use mediation and negotiations to settle their divorce. Some courts, in fact, make it mandatory for divorcing couples to seek mediation or collaborative divorce before going to court. Collaborative divorce, however, will be effective only if both spouses are willing to work with each other and participate in this divorce process; the reluctance of just one spouse will only render mediation and negotiations fruitless.

Compared to Contested divorce, the traditional way of settling divorce cases, which is held in court, open to the public and can drag on for months or years, depending on how many divorce-related issues need to be settled and how long the spouses will argue against each other through their respective lawyers, Collaborative divorce offers the following benefits:

  • Costs less;
  • Held in an informal setting (out of court);
  • Information exchange is free, open, informal, and honest;
  • Saves time;
  • Spouses can decide how to handle post-settlement disputes; and,
  • Spouses can negotiate a result that will work for both of them.

As each spouse hires their own attorney, it is important to make sure that the lawyers they choose are supportive of mediation and understand the negotiation process (lawyers who are highly skilled in a contested divorce process may not be effective in a negotiation process).

Before the four-way meeting, wherein you, with your lawyer, will meet with your former partner and his/her own lawyer, it is important that you meet privately with your own lawyer first to let him/her know exactly what you want, how much you can compromise and some things and what your limits are.

During the four-way meetings, which may occur on a regular basis, some professionals, like child custody specialists and accountants, may need to be included; make sure only that these individuals are party-neutral. The presence of a licensed third-party mediator may also become necessary, but only if the spouses find it difficult reaching agreements. A mediator’s role is to guide the spouses to reach an agreement they are satisfied with.

If no agreement can really be reached, a contract signed by everyone involved will have to take the case to court; however, before doing so, the collaborative attorneys hired will have to withdraw from the case and the spouses will have to hire their own new lawyers who will represent them in court.

As explained in the website of the law firm Marshall & Taylor PLLC, “Collaborative divorce allows couples seeking a divorce to approach their separation as partners willing to work together to reach an amicable agreement. Thus, this divorce process is much less stressful than traditional divorces and gives spouses more control over the outcome.”

The Tragic Reality of Dog Attacks

On April 16th, 2009, fun and loving Frankie, five years old, was tragically and horrifically attacked by a pit bull. The attack, which lasted for about 20 minutes, left Frankie with 100 lacerations over 1000 stitches to his head and face; he also had wounds to his hand and leg.

On January 3, 2016, a 9-year old boy died after three pit bulls, all owned by his half-sister, attacked him after he was left alone with the dogs. Barely a month after, on February 7, 2016, a 3-day old male infant was bitten on the head by their family dog, which was a male labrador-shepherd mix. The infant’s 21-year old mother placed him in a plastic laundry basket and laid the basket on the floor beside the couch where she fell asleep. The same basket was used by the dog as bed. Finding an infant where he was supposed to sleep, the dog was said to have tried to pick the baby up. The autopsy report said that the infant died after the dog’s teeth pierced his skull and caused brain injuries.

There are hundreds of other stories which tell about horrifying dog attacks on babies, children, senior citizens and people in different age brackets. According to the Centers for disease Control and Prevention (CDC), more than 4.5 million dog bites are reported in the U.S. each year. In 2012 alone, more than 27,000 people required re-constructive surgery after getting bitten by a dog; in 2015, there were 34 dog bite-related fatalities.

Many persons, especially those too young or too old and weak to defend themselves against powerful dogs have suffered very painful bites, many in the neck, face and scalp area. Though many different breeds of dogs have been known to cause injuries and/or death, there are two specific breeds identified to be the cause of majority of bite injuries: Rottweilers (second) and Pit Bulls (first in the list of most dangerous dog breeds). A 1982-2014 compilation of dog attacks resulting to deaths and injuries show that Rottweilers harmed 538-5 individuals and killed 85 others; Pit Bulls injured 3,397 people and caused 295 fatal attacks.

According to dog bite attorneys from the Hankey Law Office, nothing can be more devastating than to see children wounded and bleeding, especially due to animal attacks – in this case, dogs, which are supposed to be loving and friendly pets. It is very important that particular caution be exercised in order to prevent any dangerous accidents from occurring to children. Unfortunately, some people act in reckless or negligent ways that can put a child’s well-being at risk. If a child is injured because of another person’s irresponsible behavior, then such person may be held liable for the consequences of his/her actions.

What are the advantages of assisted living?

It is inevitable for family members to go their separate ways to start their own careers and families. There will come a time where we have to leave our family behind in order to make room for our own. In these crucial life changes, we may have an elder to leave behind. While they may still be strong enough to face the challenges of life, it might be beneficial if the family members begin to look into assisted living for the elderly as to secure the safety and security for the future, according to SeniorAdvice.com. Assisted living will ensure that a qualified staff will help your loved ones with their daily needs. According to the Texas Department of Aging and Disability Services, Facilities can be large apartment-like settings or private residences. Services include meals, bathing, dressing, toileting and administering or supervising medication. Here are some of the advantages of assisted living that you definitely should consider for your elder.

Safe and well-thought out environment will always be on the top of the list, according to Elder Care Link. Assisted living facilities are designed to cater to the comfort and easy movement of the elder, from single-floor amenities to adjacent recreational spaces. Additionally, many of the facilities have their own alert system for when the elder is in need of help.

Assisted living facilities also provide nutritious meals that are appropriate for the appetite of the elderly, since it varies when people begin to age. This is particularly helpful in sustaining the health of the elder. They also have communal dining areas, so that the seniors will never feel alone or isolated while having their meal.

The third on the list by Elder Care Link is transportation, which is provided by most living facilities. This enables the elder to join new social groups in certain community centers, and it also gets them to their doctors for checkup and other appointments.

Lastly, socialization is another great advantage to assisted living. When an elder is home alone, there is likely no contact with other people since it is quite a difficult task to prepare and go out on a regular basis. Seniors in assisted living facilities are likely to feel that they belong in a community, since they will be able to gather around with no hardships at all.

Desktop, tablet, mobile: Maximizing your online presence

There is a great shift on how we do marketing these days. During the not-so-old times, you can engage with your customer through the only and most influential media – the television. Run a few commercials in two or three leading networks on a primetime and you can instantly get your brand across almost all of your potential customers. But when Internet came into the scene, things changed dramatically. And things became even stranger when people started using not just their laptops, but also their tablets and smartphones when shopping or knowing what to buy.

As a businessman, streamlining the experience of your potential customers and converting them to clients should be your ultimate priority, and FollowUp Power says you can do this with different business solutions, such as CRM software. But this should not be your sole priority. You should also keep in mind that a good marketing strategy is what will keep your business rolling. And there is no better way to spread brand awareness than creating website for your online customers.

Ideally, the best way to market your brand is to maximize your presence in the online world. Whether your potential customer is at the work on a desktop, on the comfort of his home on an internet TV, or downtown with his smartphone, having a platform to reach them whenever they are is a great advantage.

But what if resources tell you that you need to prioritize? When trying to boost your online presence in a tight budget, try creating a hybrid website that can cater to more than a single platform. A site that is both tablet and mobile phone-friendly is way better than a website designed solely for tablet. But, if you really need to choose one, choose smartphones. According to Pew Research Center, nearly two-thirds of Americans are smartphones owners, and a majority of them use smartphones to connect to the World Wide Web.

Mesothelioma and the Other Deadly Effects of Asbestos

Asbestos, a highly elastic mineral that is resistant to heat, fire, electrical and chemical damage, began to be used in great scale in many parts of the globe during the latter part of the 19th century. Abundant, cheap and very useful, it became an easy component in the manufacture of many different products, most especially those that are related to ship building (World War II ships), such as steam turbines, steam engines, boilers, and insulate piping. Processing plant workers, firefighters, construction workers, auto workers, electricians, plumbers and machinists are some types of workers who were regularly exposed to asbestos, but the ones whose exposure to asbestos was most dangerous were asbestos miners and shipyard workers (which particularly numbered to about 4.3 million in the US during the Second World War. Those whose work involved the building of WW II ships were exposed to thousands of tons of asbestos).

According to the website of Williams Kherkher mesothelioma lawyers, asbestos is known to release sharp, tiny fibers that can be imbedded in the lungs when inhaled and never expelled through mucus secretions or coughing. This leads to effects that are too deadly to just ignore. The three known effects of inhaled asbestos include:

  • Asbestosis, which is characterized by scarred lung tissues resulting to difficulty to inhale
  • Lung Cancer, the risk of which is increased by exposure to Asbestos and can worsen due to exposure to tobacco smoke
  • Mesothelioma, a rare, yet deadly type of cancer that affects the cells which line or protect the heart, abdominal organs and the lungs

Mesothelioma, in particular, becomes manifest only 40 years (or more) after exposure to asbestos. During its long latency period, however, it continues to worsen so that by the time it becomes diagnosable, it may have already developed into a stage wherein treatment is no longer possible.

In 2002, the number of those who filed asbestos claims lawsuits numbered to more than 700,000, while the number of companies that were sued reached 8,400. Majority of those diagnosed with mesothelioma are beyond 65 years old and a number of the companies, which exposed claimants to asbestos decades ago, are no longer in operation.

Despite having gone out of business, due mostly to bankruptcy, these companies were required by law to set up funds, known as Mesothelioma Compensation Trust Funds, for the purpose of compensating asbestos victims.

Amount of compensation differs, though, from one mesothelioma claim to another. Some victims are paid only a small amount, while some are paid millions of dollars. Computing the right amount of compensation can be difficult, so does resolving a case.

New Lawsuit Accuses Janssen of Fraud and Negligence

The U.S. District Court in West Virginia received a new lawsuit filed against the blockbuster drug Xarelto. The controversial blood thinner is under fire for causing severe bleeding incidents that can lead to serious health issues and death. The anticoagulant produced by Bayer and Janssen Pharmaceuticals is now accused of fraudulently and negligently releasing inadequate drug information related to the side effects of the drug.

Jermaine Tavon McMillan filed the lawsuit for severe internal bleeding that he suffered due to Xarelto. The active ingredient found in Xarelto, rivaroxaban does not have an antidote to counteract the blood thinning effects. This means that bleeding due to the drug can become uncontrollable and cause life threatening side effects. Other anticoagulants on the market have antidotes to stop these bleeding incidents from becoming hazardous.

McMillan claims that the drug company did not release pertinent information about drug safety to medical care providers prescribing the medication. This resulted in physicians working with McMillan to relay false and unsubstantial information about Xarelto, leading to his serious internal bleeding and life threatening situation. McMillan also claims that the drug manufacturers failed to perform satisfactory testing of the safety of the drug, endangering the public.

William Foster, a spokesperson for Janssen Pharmaceuticals, stated that Xarelto was not any more or less dangerous than other anticoagulants on the market. The risk of bleeding incidents is an understood possibility when taking any blood thinner.

McMillan is seeking compensatory damages of physical and emotional damages sustained from his medical issues after taking Xarelto. If you or a loved one has experienced adverse side effects after taking Xarelto, click here to learn more about your legal options.

Causes of Workplace Accidents

There is a vast array of sources that can yield a construction work site unsafe. Slip and falls, caught-in betweens, and electrocutions are primary ways in which construction workers can be injured, yet can be prevented were the site more secure. According to the website of Hach & Rose, LLP, when this happens, workers can be eligible for compensation to help recover. Injuries as a result of unkempt workplaces have a broad range of potential injuries, but have life-threatening potential depending on the situation.

Workers can slip and fall when they trip over materials that should not be in their way. When debris or other materials are on the ground, workers are liable to not see there is something at their feet or blocking their way. These materials should be stored properly and away from walking areas, as to prevent tripping.

To be disposed of or stored, debris and materials should have designated storage systems. Trash chutes should be employed at all levels of a construction site to prevent the debris from falling on a worker below. Lacking a trash chute can cause serious trauma. If something heavy and sharp falls from a considerable height and lands on a worker’s head, it is possible for their brain to be injured.

Another source of injury can result from hazardous atmospheres and electrical hazards. Construction site managers need to be aware of gases produced and reacting in the air, because some combinations are harmful and even deathly. Electrical outlets and cords need to be monitored, because if workers make contact with an unprotected charged outlet or wire, they can be electrocuted.

While there are innumerable potential causes of unsafe work site conditions, these are simply a few to count. The responsible party, such as the construction site overseer or property manager, should ensure that steps are taken to keep the work place as safe as possible.

Sealed Container Defense in Product Liability

When you buy a product, whether it is drugs, medical devices, automobiles, food, or any consumer product, it is the responsibility of the manufacturer to ensure that it is safe to use or consume. Unfortunately, this happens more often than we know. According to the website of Abel Law Firm, thousands of consumers are harmed by substandard products despite regulations designed to control their quality. However many consumers fail to report these malfunctions.

When the product is defective or fails under normal use, the manufacturer is considered liable. However, there are instances where the distributor and retailer may also be held liable if they knowingly sold a defective or unreasonably harmful product. These parties may also be held jointly and severally liable if they fail to provide adequate warning about the inherent dangers of using a non-defective product, information that a typical consumer may not have access to.

For example, you purchased a certain brand of tires from a local dealer. The dealer knew that the tires had been recalled by the manufacturer because of a defect but sold it to you anyway. In this case, the manufacturer may avoid liability for any injuries or damage you sustain from using the tires, but you have a good case for a product liability suit against the dealer if you can prove that the dealer was aware of the recall.

This burden of proof is one of the factors that make up the Sealed Container Defense in Product Liability cases encoded in the Delaware Code § 7001. Under this defense, the distributor or dealer can claim that they were not aware of a defect and could not have discovered this on their own unless the manufacturer had informed them. In order for this defense to be applicable, however, the seller must also establish that the product was sold unaltered in a sealed container provided by the manufacturer.

There are many pitfalls in this defense as most sellers will inspect and test the product upon purchase and many will provide a warranty for a limited period, both of which may preclude the use of this defense. However, because many people purchase products online and the product arrives apparently sealed, it may fly.

If you sustained serious injury or harm from a defective product, you may have a product liability claim. Consult with an experienced product liability lawyer in a timely manner, for an assessment of your case and to find out the extent of the seller’s liability.

Outsourcing’s Business Benefits

Outsourcing is one of the booming industries in the world today. It is the process by which a company allocates the processes and functions of their business to third party or external workers. Outsourcing is very popular to any type of work that can be done in an offshore location. There are many benefits of outsourcing your business, and here are some of them:

  1. It proves to be cost effective. Outsourcing can provide quality services at a lower cost of manpower. Depending on the location of the country you are planning to outsource, the difference in wages will still be significant enough to save you from expenses while still getting quality output.
  2. Efficient employees help in growing your business. Generally, outsourcing companies hire people with experience and expertise thus would result to high productivity and efficiency. Likewise, this would free you from unnecessary tasks and permit you to focus your energy on further developing your brand and allow you to develop your services.
  3. Outsourcing can save you money from investing to a location to house your employees. This expense is often the hardest thing to establish when starting or growing your business, therefore outsourcing can provide you with the same services without having to invest in infrastructure and even the technology to get things done.

According to the website of Pinoy Partners Outsourcing Center, Inc the biggest benefit of outsourcing your business is saving on time. Saving time isn’t the only thing outsourcing can help a company with. Outsourcing important functions to people who specialize in them would give you, the business owner, the chance to focus on what you do best – running the business. Outsourcing would also gain you and your business an important partner that can provide professional guidance in their chosen industry. It offers the benefit of professional capabilities even to small businesses, without having to worry about the equipment, software, personnel, and know-how to grow the business.

When a Personal Injury Claim is Viable

Personal injury claims are generally based on the proving the defendant’s fault or negligence was the direct cause of the plaintiff’s injuries and damages. Economic and non-economic damages will depend on the damages that the plaintiff has suffered. In cases where the plaintiff got injured after a bar or nightclub fight, he or she have the option of making the assailant and/or the bar or nightclub liable for the damages that the fight caused.

Under the intentional tort principles (when a person intentionally acted in order to cause harm to others), the assailant can be made liable for the damages that you have suffered after the fight. However, you have to prove that you were not the one who provoked the fight, or did not agree to partake in the fight but was unfortunately pulled into it (also called “mutual affray” in legalese). One thing to consider, according to the website of Wilson & McQueen PLLC, when thinking of filing a personal injury claim against the assailant is his or her ability to provide compensation for the damages; if the assailant does not have the funds to pay for compensation, it may be a waste of time and money to file for a personal injury claim.

On the other hand, you can also sue the bar or nightclub under the premises liability law. The bar or nightclub is liable for the damages sustained after a fight under the general personal injury laws. Proving the negligence of the bar or nightclub in your personal injury claim, you have to look into the bar or nightclub responsibility to secure the safety of their customers and the alcohol service policies. If a bar in known to have fights may require stricter security and policies to secure the safety of their patrons. As for alcohol service policies, according to the dram shop laws, bars and nightclubs have the duty to closely monitor their patrons to make sure they are not serving alcohol to already intoxicated patrons. Additionally, any violations that the bar or nightclub is committing can be used by you in a lawsuit filed against the establishment.

Personal injury claims after a bar fight follow the standard personal injury process. Make sure to immediately report the incident, get treatment, and gather necessary information, witness testimonies, and evidence to make a strong claim. Williams & Kherkher say on their website that it is also important to find the right lawyer to help present the case in court, since every case is different and each state can have laws that would affect the claim in different ways.