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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schoolbus1The recent tragedy in Mamaroneck, New York, where a young kindergarten student and his mother were fatally struck by a school bus while walking to school, has left our community in shock and mourning.

As school bus accident attorneys, we are deeply familiar with the complexities and dire consequences of such tragic events. The details of this particular incident are heart-wrenching: a 6-year-old boy and his 43-year-old mother, just half a block away from Mamaroneck Avenue Elementary School, were hit by a school bus as they rightfully crossed the street at a designated crosswalk. Despite the walk sign being on, the bus, carrying several students and an aide, turned left and tragically struck the pedestrians.

The young boy was pronounced dead at the scene, and his mother succumbed to her injuries after being rushed to the hospital. This loss is not just a statistic; it represents a significant and irreplaceable loss to their family and our community.

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New York City aging buildings at risk of collapseIn a monumental move to safeguard New York City’s residents, the City Council has passed a bill mandating proactive inspections for residential buildings based on their structural risks. As building collapse attorneys in New York City, this development is not only welcome but long overdue. The city’s new initiative promises to prevent tragedies by identifying potential hazards before they become catastrophic failures.

A Shift from Reactive to Proactive

Historically, New York City’s approach to building safety has been largely reactive, relying on complaints and reports of visible damage before taking action. This method has proven insufficient, as evidenced by recent incidents of structural collapses that have caused significant disruption and loss.

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John Adams High School where sexual abuse occuredAs New York City grapples with an alarming increase in sexual misconduct complaints within its public school system, the capacity to investigate these claims is severely hampered by budget constraints and staff shortages. The Special Commissioner of Investigation, tasked with overseeing complaints against Education Department employees and contractors, faces unprecedented challenges. This is where the expertise of specialized legal representation becomes indispensable.

A Surge in Complaints, a Decline in Investigations

The Special Commissioner of Investigation received over 10,260 complaints last year, a record high compared to the 9,630 complaints in 2019. Yet, despite this increase, the number of investigations has drastically decreased. In 2023, the agency conducted less than half the investigations it performed in 2015, despite nearly double the number of complaints. This sharp decline underscores the growing strain on the office’s ability to manage its caseload.

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drunk drivingIn a poignant day of justice and sorrow, two separate cases of drunk driving that resulted in five tragic deaths saw the perpetrators sentenced in Nassau County. The courtrooms were filled with emotional outpourings from grieving families, marking the end of a painful chapter but also a stark reminder of the devastating consequences of driving under the influence.

Case One: High-Speed Tragedy in Laurel Hollow

Sotirios Spanos, 33, was sentenced to seven to 21 years in prison for his reckless actions last August that claimed the lives of Ismenia and Odalis Urena, a young married couple. Spanos, intoxicated and speeding at nearly 100 mph, lost control on Northern Boulevard, crossing the yellow line and colliding with the couple’s Ferrari convertible.

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employers are liable for employees heat illnessesAs construction accident lawyers in New York City, we are deeply concerned about the impact of the upcoming heat wave on our city’s construction workers. The extreme heat expected this week poses a serious threat to the health and safety of those working on construction sites. A previous  investigation by “the City” indicates that when the temperature hits 85 degrees, workers in New York City are 7% more likely to be injured on the job. At 95 degrees, the likelihood of an accident goes up by one more point, to 8%.

Alarmingly, nearly 75% of workers who die from heat-related causes do so within their first week on the job

Heat is a well-known occupational hazard that can cause severe or even fatal illnesses if workers are not provided with the necessary protections and training. Each year, thousands of workers fall ill due to occupational heat exposure, and tragically, many of these cases result in death. New employees, who have not yet acclimated to working in high temperatures, are particularly vulnerable.

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Car Accident in NYThe upcoming Memorial Day weekend, traditionally a time for celebration and travel, also marks one of the most dangerous periods on U.S. roads.

As attorneys representing victims of car accidents, we recognize the profound impact that crashes can have on individuals and families.  The National Safety Council (NSC) estimates that 418 people may lose their lives in motor vehicle crashes over the holiday period from Friday, May 24, to Monday, May 27. This represents an 11% decrease compared to last year’s estimate, but it still underscores the critical need for heightened awareness and preventive measures.

The Role of Infrastructure and Driver Behavior

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John Adams High School where sexual abuse occuredAs attorneys dedicated to advocating for victims of school sexual abuse, we are deeply troubled by three recent events that have unfolded in schools across New York City, specifically in Queens and the Bronx. The following incidents demonstrate the urgent need for comprehensive measures to safeguard our children and hold perpetrators accountable within educational institutions:

  1. A 23-year-old Queens substitute teacher at Hillcrest High School on Highland Ave. near 162nd St. in Jamaica was arrested yesterday after he allegedly touched a 14-year-old student’s thigh and told her “If I were a student I would make you fall in love with me and have sex with me”. Jasskirat Saini was charged with harassment and child endangerment.
  2. Last Friday, another 23-year-old man working as a grammar school teacher’s aide at Bronx school P.S. 481 was also arrested after he gave a love letter to a 10-year-old student. Estevan Hamilton gave the letter to the student in the morning. The student showed it to her mom at lunchtime and the stepfather went to the school at the beginning of the afternoon to confront the school aid and punched him in the face. The police were called and the school aid was arrested and charged with endangering the welfare of a child and harassment.
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Location of the Brooklyn DWI AccidentAs Brooklyn personal injury lawyers, it is both heartbreaking and frustrating to witness preventable tragedies like yesterday’s crash in Brownsville, that left a one-year-old child in critical condition.

Yesterday evening, 28-year-old Natalie Leonard was driving with a blood alcohol content of 0.08%, the legal limit in New York. She ran two red lights and collided with another vehicle at Dumont Avenue. In the passenger seat was a 21-year-old mother holding her one-year-old son, who was not in a car seat. Both were unrestrained, leading to severe consequences when the crash occurred. The child suffered a skull fracture and was rushed to Brookdale University Hospital, where he remains in critical but stable condition.

Legal Ramifications

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Brooklyn DA OfficeAs personal injury attorneys representing victims in Brooklyn, we have witnessed firsthand the devastating consequences of negligence in the construction industry. The recent conviction of a Nassau County construction company owner for criminally negligent homicide in the death of a young girl serves as a reminder of the critical importance of adhering to building codes and safety protocols.

On August 29, 2019, a tragic event unfolded in Bushwick, Brooklyn, when 5-year-old Alysson Pinto-Chaumana lost her life due to the collapse of a poorly constructed stone wall. Alysson, along with her mother and friends, was visiting a residence at 444 Harman Street. While waiting on the enclosed patio, the stone pillars and horizontal plates of the wall suddenly fell, crushing Alysson and causing her untimely death.

An in-depth investigation revealed that Nadeem Anwar, the owner of City Wide Construction and Renovations, Inc., had constructed the wall in violation of numerous provisions of the New York City Building Code.

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webinar on Ben's medical malpractice verdict of $120 million
NYSTLI Dean Anthony Pirrotti, Jr., Esq., will be hosting a Discussion with our managing partner and celebrated Trial Attorney Ben Rubinowitz, Esq.; Trial Judge Paul. I. Marx; and Defense Attorney Alfred Vigorito, Esq. next Monday May 20, 2024 from 5:00 to 7:00 PM ET.

Ben and our law firm handled a complex Stroke case  involving a 41-year-old individual who was employed, married, and had children. Due to alleged malpractice, he ended up in a nursing home, unable to care for himself or his family. We will discuss the development of this malpractice case, including medical and defense aspects, discovery, depositions, and Motions in Limine. We will emphasize the significance of pleadings and expert responses for both the plaintiff and defendant and how these issues influenced the trial.

Topics include jury selection, binding statements and omissions during jury selection and openings, cross-examination of plaintiff and defendant witnesses, dismissal of a third-party defendant, the potential repercussions of aggressively attacking a witness, leveraging the defendant doctor as an expert, and the introduction of newly asserted cross-claims at trial. Additionally, we will explore the understanding of 50-A and 50-B statutes, the concept of “Loss of Chance,” the valuation of loss of consortium claims, directed verdicts against a defendant, and the strategy of defendants pointing fingers at each other.