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Articles Posted in Negligence

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even Hills School Hillsdale campus from aboveA teenager died after being crushed by a defective car seat after making two agonizing phone calls to 911. Sixteen year old Kyle Plush was in his van, a Honda Odissey, on the parking lot of the Seven Hills School – Illsdale Campus in Madisonville, OH when the second-row seat accidentally tipped forward slowly crushing the young man to death. 46 people previously reported minor injuries for a similar issue and Honda issued a recall of this model last year to fix the problem.

“I probably don’t have much time left, so tell my mom that I love her if I die,”

As the seat was crushing him, Kyle picked up his cell phone and called 911 begging for help. He told the operator he was at “Seven Hills” but she couldn’t understand where it was. He made a second call and told the operator “I probably don’t have much time left, so tell my mom that I love her if I die,” he said. “I’m trapped inside my gold Honda Odyssey van. In the (inaudible) parking lot of Seven Hills Hillsdale. Send officers immediately. I’m almost dead.”

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Daniel-Pollack-1In a new article entitled “Multiple Foster Care Placements Should be Considered a Mitigating Factor in Criminal Proceedings”  Daniel Pollack, a professor at Yeshiva University’s School of Social in New York City, and a frequent expert witness in child welfare cases, Khaya Eisenberg, Psy.D., a clinical psychologist in private practice in Jerusalem, Israel and Amanda Dolce,  an attorney in Florida practicing child welfare law write :”It is widely believed that attachment to a primary caregiver is an inherent need and a prerequisite for healthy psychological development. For foster children, this attachment may be challenged  Many foster care adolescents perceive their biological and foster parents to be less invested in them, which can lead to weaker social bonds and increased vulnerability to delinquency. Difficulties with attachment have been associated with lack of impulse control or empathy and criminality. Some suggest that the lack of opportunity to experience parents as benevolent, result in children feeling devalued and perhaps reacting defensively by devaluing others through aggressive or defiant behavior. ”

The complete article can be downloaded here

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New York Wrongful death Attorneys Ben Rubinowitz and Peter SaghirOur New York Personal Injury Attorneys Ben Rubinowitz and Peter Saghir  recently obtained a $41.5 million Verdict for the wrongful death of a City sanitation worker who was struck by a sweeper truck.
43-year-old Steven Frosh, a City worker died on the job in 2014. He left behind a wife and 4 children aged 7 weeks, 3, 8 and 11 year-old. At the time of the accident, Mr. Frosh was in a city garage in Maspeth. He was making adjustments to his street sweeper truck when he was fatally hit by another street sweeper. He suffered excruciating pain for 2 to 3 minutes before succumbing to his injuries.
His wife, Bina Frosch, sued the City of New York for the negligence and carelessness of the worker driving the sweeper truck.
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Daniel-Pollack-1In a recent article  Daniel Pollack, a  professor at Yeshiva University’s School of Social Work in New York City and a frequent expert witness in child welfare lawsuits  and Cameron R. Getto a shareholder with Zausmer, August & Caldwell, P.C. in Farmington Hills, MI who focuses his practice on representing

nonprofits, health care professionals and human services organizations provides an in-depth analysis of the actual presentation and use of  state child welfare report cards.

While report cards are often useful in providing a good overview of child welfare agencies’ strengths and weaknesses, their condensed content can sometimes be misinterpreted or used unfairly. For example comparisons between States are often misleading because each State has a different methodology to produce its report card.  Politicians and media are big users of report cards. They mostly use the rankings and the grades to support their message. Report cards have also been used very effectively in litigation and the data underlying the report cards have affected court decisions throughout the United States far more than the report cards themselves.

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Daniel-Pollack-1Failing to call an expert witness in criminal child maltreatment cases can be legal malpractice that can result in a substantial likelihood of a miscarriage of justice. In  a recent article Daniel Pollack, a professor at Yeshiva University’s School of Social Work in New York City analyzes when a claim of ineffective assistance of counsel may be supported in the child welfare legal arena.  To do so, Pollack uses the example of People of the State of Michigan v. Ackley (2015). In this specific case Leo Ackley was convicted by a jury of first-degree felony murder and first-degree child abuse following the death of his girlfriend’s young daughter. During the trial five medical experts testified the daughter died as the result of injuries that were caused intentionally. Ackley’s attorney didn’t call any expert to refute the prosecution expert testimony or to support the defendant’s theory of the case. Ackley’s attorney’s decision not to retain an expert witness for his client was considered by the Michigan Supreme Court  “ineffective assistance of counsel”.

Download the article here

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Daniel+Pollack-1In a recent article, Daniel Pollack, a professor at the School of Social Work, Yeshiva University, in New York City & Cameron R. Ghetto, Esq. discuss the dilemma of whether a department of human services employee who is sued is entitled to their own attorney. They point out that of critical importance is the type of claim asserted. Is it predicated upon negligence? Is it an intentional tort? They point out that  given the unique nature of each lawsuit and the laws that apply, no one prescription applies to all situations. The following topics are covered; When Employees Should Request their Own Attorney? Financial Considerations; When the Government is Likely to Provide Counsel for an Individual Employee; Conflict Waivers; Ethical and Substantive Legal Considerations. They conclude that “An attorney may represent multiple clients if their interests are not directly adverse to each other. However, the attorney must explain any circumstances that might cause a client to question the attorney’s undivided allegiance. Similarly, if there are questions of conflict of interest the attorney seeking to undertake the representation must satisfactorily resolve them. During litigation, many states allow the court to raise the question if it believes the attorney has failed to do so.” Read Complete Article. Deciding when to assign separate counsel to public service agency co-defendants.

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Daniel+Pollack-1When a vulnerable individual is injured or dies because of negligent supervision the term “line of sight” is often used. In a recent article, Daniel Pollack, a professor at the School of Social Work, Yeshiva University, in New York City, looks at the meaning of “line of sight”.

If an individual requires continuous line of sight supervision, what does it mean exactly? Does it mean that a supervisor must constantly have his or her eyes on the individual? Does it mean that a person must have an unobstructed  view of the room where the individual is? Daniel Pollack relied on his previous experience as an attorney for the Ohio Department of Youth Services to explain that the interpretation of “line of sight” varies depending on cases.

The complete article can be downloaded here

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Daniel+Pollack-1Group homes are mostly sued when an employee neglects a resident or when one of them is abused.

Negligence often results from unintentional wrongdoing by employees in the group home or from denial of care or delayed care. A group home can also be sued when employees fail to protect a resident from injuring himself or from being injured by other residents.

Abuse is unfortunately also common in group homes and is mostly related to sexual misconduct especially toward minors.

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Daniel+Pollack-1Many parents who suffer mental illness are still fit to take care of their children.  However in some cases the mental illness of a parent may be such that it may impair the emotional development of a child and his or her physical health. In such cases, the court may restrict parenting time. In a recent article, Daniel Pollack, a professor at Yeshiva University’s School of Social Work in New York City explains how a determination of mental illness or instability may affect affect the court’s decision as to child custody. The article also describes how the court is assessing the mental fitness of the parent. It also explains how difficult it can be for the court to act in the best interest of the child while respecting the parent’s right to privacy and confidentiality and points out how human service agencies can help in providing useful and objective information that will serve the child’s best interest.

The complete article can be downloaded here

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uberNegligent safety practices such as not doing enough while checking drivers backgrounds are putting Uber users’s safety at risk.  The popular car service company just settled a lawsuit that was filed against it two years ago by the District Attorneys of San Francisco and Los Angeles over the claim that the company misled clients on its safety practices and the methods used to screen drivers.

Uber will have to pay $10 million split between the District Attorneys of San Francisco and Los Angeles and another $15 million if it doesn’t comply with the terms of the settlement after two years.

The lawsuit alleged Uber doesn’t do enough to protect its passengers. Drivers are screened by a third party and don’t need to provide fingerprints. Last year third party background checks failed to uncover the criminal records of 25 drivers in San Francisco and Los Angeles.