Do hospital falls equal medical malpractice?

submitted by Michael C. Ksiazek, Attorney at Stark & Stark Attorneys at Law, www.Stark-Stark.com

The question of whether a slip and fall that occurs within a hospital constitutes medical malpractice, rather than ordinary negligence, has been a much debated topic. The distinction is important because, in Pennsylvania, there are a number of procedural hurdles – which do not apply to an ordinary negligence case – a plaintiff must first tackle in order to successfully file and pursue a medical malpractice case.

There has been some inconsistency among Pennsylvania courts, as well as courts in other states, on this issue. This makes it very difficult to determine or predict whether a hospital fall case will be deemed a medical malpractice and, therefore, subject to the medical malpractice procedural requirements.

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Ho! Ho! WHOA!

submitted by Wendy Wotlman, Owner/Operator, Meineke Car Care Center Doylestown, www.Meineke.com

It’s getting cold, the snow IS coming and the holidays are fast approaching. Time to visit friends and family, so here are a few tips to keep your and yours safe.

First and foremost is never drive after having enjoyed a couple holiday cocktails. No day is best spent in a hospital bed.

Avoid driving while fatigued. We all tend to rush around shopping, driving kids, etc., but this takes a toll on our bodies and mind, reducing reaction time.

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Now Is the time to winterize your car

submitted by Herb Elsner II, Owner, Herb Elsner’s Auto Repair and Towing, www.elsnerautorepair.com

With the cold winter months quickly approaching, the last thing you want is for your car to break down or have an accident because your car has not been properly winterized or inspected by a professional to help you prepare you for these dangerous conditions.

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Is your siding choice ‘as solid as a rock?’

submitted by Scott Miller, Service Manager, C and C Family Roofing

Remember when re-siding your house was limited to three or four options? Today there are numerous options to choose from. One of those options is cement board siding.

There are a lot of opinions out there regarding the efficiency and practicality of cement board siding. Many of those opinions come from installation companies that see the trends in their sales. Why is this material so controversial if it’s supposed to be so good?

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Medicaid helps children who live with aging parents

submitted by E. Garrett Gummer, III, Esquire, and Maureen L. Anderson, Esquire, www.GummerElderLaw.com

In Pennsylvania, if you give your home to your children (or to someone else) and then apply for Medicaid coverage in a nursing home, you can be disqualified for a long period of time. You are required to spend down your resources on your own care before applying for Medicaid, rather than give them away.

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Santa’s not the only one with a checklist

submitted by Scott Miller, Service Manager, C and C Family Roofing

A chill is in the air, which is the first sign that winter is approaching. There are just a few weeks left to get our homes in order for the cold winter ahead. But where do you start?

The holiday season is already busy enough so here are some important issues to resolve so that your winter is a pleasant one. Your roof is the primary protective shield from snow and ice. If your roof is not functioning properly then you will get water damage or mold. Have a roofing contractor check your roof material and flashings and put together an action plan to correct any issues found.

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Is your medical malpractice claim actionable under law?

submitted by Edward S. Shensky, Esq. and Leslie A. Mitnick, R.N., Esq.

Medical malpractice, a fairly common legal claim, requires four elements that must be met to prove the case. These four elements are duty, breach, causation and damages.

Duty refers to the responsibility that the healthcare provider has to the patient to act both reasonably and appropriately in providing care or treatment to said patient. In a healthcare provider/patient relationship, the provider has a duty to act within the “standard of care” for the patient and must act as would any other provider, in his or her area of expertise, given the circumstances.

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The attic is no place to read a book

submitted by Gary Selleck, Owner, C and C Family Roofing

At least twice a week a customer will bring to my attention the fact that their bedroom is so hot that it is hard to sleep. This statement is usually followed up with how hot the attic is. These concerns are connected due to the proximity of the bedrooms to the attic.

The sun beats down on the roof and creates radiant heat build-up in the attic. So what are the best ways to reverse the effects of the sun on your home?

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How to deal with a deceased loved one’s debt collectors

submitted by E. Garrett Gummer, III, Esquire, and Maureen L. Anderson, Esquire, www.GummerElderLaw.com

The last thing anyone wants after a death in the family is a call from debt collectors. It’s important to know what a person’s creditors can (and cannot) legally do, and how to protect yourself and your family from improper or deceptive practices.

Generally, after a person dies, their estate is responsible for paying any debts they may have left. Sometimes a decedent leaves more debts than assets. When this occurs, the estate is insolvent.

If this occurs, the creditor is out of luck and the debt goes unpaid.

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Navigating divorce, custody and support

submitted by Michelle Christian, Esq., Stark & Stark Attorneys at Law, www.Stark-Stark.com

In a divorce proceeding, marital property is generally considered to be everything that is acquired from the date of marriage until the date of separation, regardless of whether or not your name is on the property. Marital property can also include the appreciation of property that was acquired before the date of marriage. In Pennsylvania, marital property is divided “equitably.”

An equitable distribution is what is “fair” under the circumstances and facts of the case. Although property can be divided evenly, as in 50/50, many times the division is 60/40 or sometimes 70/30.

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