Gair, Gair, Conason, Rubinowitz, Bloom, Hershenhorn, Steigman & Mackauf is a New York Plaintiff's personal injury law firm specializing in automobile accidents, construction accidents, medical malpractice, products liability, police misconduct and all types of New York personal injury litigation.
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An elderly woman that caused a 10-car crash in New York City last Sunday died from her injuries on Tuesday. 78 year old Barbara Capone was driving her car on Travis Ave in Staten Island when she hit a car. She didn’t stop. Instead she sped up and crashed into several other vehicles waiting at a red light at the intersection of Travis Ave and Victory Blvd.  The impact was so strong that her car went airborne and landed on other vehicles waiting at the intersection. A 75 year old man was pinned inside his car and died at the scene of the accident. 10 other people were injured in the car crash including Barbara Capone and were transported to the hospital. Capone suffered severe head trauma and passed away two days later.

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Underride truck accidentUnderride truck accidents are among the most horrific traffic accidents.  They usually involved a car sliding under a truck, most often a tractor trailer truck.  These accidents are often deadly and gruesome. In many cases, pieces of metal from the truck intrude into the vehicle causing passengers severe  head trauma or decapitation.

Regulations requiring rear impact guards on most large trucks exist but they are 20 years old and in need of a serious upgrade.  Therefore a few months ago the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration  (NHTSA) proposed a new rule to update the Federal motor vehicle safety standards that address rear underride protection in crashes into trailers and semitrailers.

The NTHSA proposal requires that the impact guard be strengthened so that it doesn’t deform if a car crashes into it at a speed of 35 mph. This is basically the equivalent of the actual Canadian standards which are themselves 10 years old. 90%  of American trucks already conform to these standards. Many of them even have protective equipment that is superior to the Canadian standards. Therefore the NHTSA proposal seems obsolete before even being launched and it will not do much to reduce the actual number of deaths and injuries related to underride truck accidents.

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jbAfter Lavern’s Law was left to die by the NY legislature, NYC medical malpractice attorney Jeff Bloom was quoted in Politico saying “The fact that once again the Senate leadership has caved to the will of hospital executives is a slap in the face to the men and women who are injured by careless medical errors and through no fault of their own find out too late to hold anyone accountable”. Jeff Bloom, a senior partner at our firm and the attorney for Elissa McMahon, whose doctors allegedly failed diagnose her uterine cancer, added: “[Senate Majority Leader John] Flanagan should look Lissy McMahon, her son Jack and other victims in the eye and explain why he is protecting negligent doctors rather than letting them have their day in court.” (For more info on the rejection of the Lavern’s Law by the NY legislature see our previous blog.)

The Lavern’s Law bill was not the only health care bill that didn’t make the cut in Albany.  HIV and AIDS advocates were expecting a $70 million in funding for housing that didn’t go through despite a previous announcement by Governor Cuomo that $200 million would be spent to fight the epidemic. A Cuomo task force dedicated to end the HIV epidemic also recommended passing the Gender Expression Non-Discrimination Act and the Reproductive Health Act but neither of them made it through the Senate. The Senate also blocked two bills facilitating the distribution of medical marijuana and a universal healthcare bill.

A bill proposing a cap of $250,000 for pain and suffering in medical malpractice cases didn’t make it to the Assembly and another bill that would have relaxed the rules excluding hearsay as admissible evidence made it to the Assembly but was blocked by the Senate.

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Three men where injured in a car accident in New York early Thursday morning around 2:00 am. The 3 men where riding in a white BMW on the Major Deegan Expressway in the Bronx.  As they were approaching W. 230th St. the car struck a divider. The impact was so strong that the car flipped over. The 3 men were seriously injured during the accident. One of them was in critical condition. They were all transported to the hospital.

Read more in the NY Daily News

 

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A New York medical malpractice bill that proposed to start the statute of limitations when a medical error is discovered rather than when it is committed wasn’t considered by New York legislators before the summer break. It is the second year that the bill called Lavern’s Law died in the State legislature despite the strong support from many (see previous blog), including our firm.

One of our partners, Jeffrey Bloom is representing Elissa McMahon, a patient whose doctors failed to timely diagnose cancer. Elissa McMahon was  unable to bring a lawsuit against the doctors who misdiagnosed her because the statute of limitation had passed. Jeff made the trip with her to Albany to help her campaign for the Lavern’s Law. Now, Elissa McMahon who is diagnosed with stage 4 cancer will have to wait until next year to hopefully be able to bring a lawsuit against the negligent doctors who ruined her life. (see previous blog)

Last year the bill passed the Assembly but died in the Senate. This year the Assembly waited to see what the Republican Senate would do. Despite being backed by the Senate GOP Deputy Majority Leader John DeFrancisco, the medical establishment was clearly against it and the Senate was unable to reach a consensus.

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Car accidents are a common cause of Tibial Plateau Fractures. It is estimated that approximately 25% of such fractures are caused by pedestrians being struck by cars or other motor vehicles, hence they have been referred to as bumper fractures. In New York City many pedestrians struck by vehicles suffer injury to the Tibial Plateau. The Tibia or shinbone as it is commonly referred to is one of the bones of the lower leg the other being the fibula. It joins and articulates with the lower end of the Femur. The Tibial Plateau is located at the upper end of the Tibia and is part of the knee-joint. It is one of the most important load bearing parts of the body, thus fractures of it often affect knee alignment and stability.

In this video, Dr Nabil Ebraheim, Professor and Chair of Orthopedic Surgery at The University of Toledo, explains what a Tibial Plateau Fracture is and how it affects the knee and leg.

If you are interested in seeing more high quality medical videos from Professor Ebraheim, you can visit his youtube channel or follow him on Google +

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Giovanni Nin, 26, was struck by an SUV as he rode his bike around 12:40 a.m. Saturday. The accident occurred at the intersection of East Tremont Avenue and Mayflower Avenue in The Bronx, NYC. The SUV, a BMW X 5 fled the scene according to a witness. The police are still looking for the driver. This was a deadly weekend for pedestrians and cyclists. According to The New York Daily News, on Saturday afternoon a 52 year old woman was hit by a car and killed late Saturday afternoon. A woman riding her bike suffered fatal injuries when she was struck by a pick-up truck in Tribeca in Manhattan on Saturday night. Further, on Friday night Saber Mohamed a passenger in a Toyota Sienna, was killed when a Ford Explorer sped past several stop signs on Georgia Avenue in Brooklyn striking the Toyota. Christopher Cates, the driver of the Explorer attempted to flee but was caught by the police. Cates was charged with  manslaughter, vehicular manslaughter, criminally negligent homicide, speeding and driving while impaired by drugs

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In  Wally G., an Infant, by His Mother and Natural Guardian, Yoselin T v. New York City Health and Hospitals Corporation (Metropolitan Hospital), 2016 NY Slip Op 04443 decided on June 9, 2016, The New York Court of Appeals in a 4-3 decision affirmed the decision of the Appellate Division, 1st Department dismissing plaintiff’s complaint for serving a late Notice of Claim without first obtaining leave of court as required by General Municipal Law 50-e (5). In this medical malpractice action the infant plaintiff was born prematurely by emergency cesarean section at Metropolitan Hospital in New York City, a New York City Health and Hospitals Corp. (HHC) hospital.

He was transferred to the neonatal intensive care unit and discharged in stable condition in August 2005. In January 2007, more than 90 days after the claim arose, without first obtaining leave of court as required by General Municipal Law 50-e (5), plaintiff served a notice of claim against HHC alleging negligence and malpractice arising out of failure to properly treat and manage his mother’s prenatal care and failure to obtain informed consent with regard to plaintiff’s care. The notice claimed that plaintiff sustained brain damage, cognitive defects, developmental, speech and psychomotor delays, fetal and respiratory distress and seizure disorder. Plaintiff filed suit in August 2008, but waited until December 2010, to seek permission to serve a late notice of claim. The Appellate Division affirmed dismissal, finding unreasonable an excuse that counsel waited because he needed to receive medical records from HHC. The court held that plaintiff failed to establish “that the medical records put HHC on notice that the alleged malpractice would subsequently give rise to brain damage as a result of birth trauma and hypoxia,” The New York Court of Appeals affirmed. Contrary to plaintiff’s argument, the medical records must do more than “suggest” that an injury occurred as a result of malpractice in order for the medical provider to have actual knowledge of essential facts. In a dissent written by Judge Abdus-Salaam in which Judges Rivera and Fahey concurred, she opined “….. I believe that the courts below abused their discretion in holding that infant plaintiff Wally G.’s hospital records did not provide defendant New York City Health and Hospitals Corporation (HHC) with actual knowledge of injury attributable to its potential malpractice.”

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In New York the statute of limitations for medical malpractice starts from the time the medical error occurred. Assemblywoman Helene Weinstein (D-Brooklyn) is sponsoring a bill that would start the statute of limitations from the time the medical error is discovered instead of the the time it occurred. The bill, named after Lavern Wilkinson, a mother who died of a curable form of lung cancer after doctors misdiagnosed her (see previous blog), has 38 Senate Sponsors , both Republican and Democrats according to Assemblywoman Weinstein. This is enough to pass as long as the Senate decides to take the bill to a vote this year. The time is ticking on the bill as there is only one week left before the session ends. Read more in New York CBS Local.

Our partner, New York Medical Malpractice Attorney Jeffrey Bloom is strongly supporting the bill. Jeff is representing Lissy MacMahon, a single mother of a 15 year old son who was recently diagnosed with stage 4 cancer. Lissy had a previous surgery in 2012 in a New York Hospital. At the time of the surgery, doctors failed to diagnose her cancer. When she visited our office, Lissy learned that she was unable to sue because the statute of limitations had passed despite the fact that she had just learned about her cancer.  Lavern’s Law if it passed would allow Lissy to commence her lawsuit and make sure she and her son are taken care of.  Jeff traveled to Albany to support Lissy and many others who could benefit from the passage of this law. Below is a video of Lissy that will be shown to all New York State legislators.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Ot9MSGkcLbw

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brOur managing partner, NY personal injury attorney Ben Rubinowitz will be the featured speaker at the Massachusetts Academy of Trial Attorneys; Attorney Voir Dire Skills Development Workshop this coming Thursday, June 9th. The workshop will take place at the Hampshire County Courthouse, Courtroom 3, 15 Gothic Street, Northampton, MA.  from 1:00 pm to 4:00pm.

The seminar will start with an introduction from MATA President Annette Gonthier-Kiely, followed by lectures.  A voir dire demonstration will then be conducted with an actual simulated jury followed by 4 pre-selected volunteers who will have the opportunity to test-drive their own voir dire skills by conducting a progressive panel voir dire.

For more information about this seminar or to register please click here