Did you know that the fine print in many nursing home admissions contracts deprives residents of their constitutional rights, making their stay more dangerous? Anyone who has been through the admissions process knows how incredibly stressful it can be. Unfortunately, many admission contracts slip in a provision known as forced arbitration, of which many families and seniors are completely unaware.
Forced arbitration blocks seniors from accessing the court system, even in instances of severe neglect, serious injury, sexual and physical abuse, or death. These clauses mandate that the victim use private, biased arbitration forums where the decisions are often made by arbitration firms handpicked by the wrongdoer with no right to appeal, no accountability, and no transparency. Without this accountability, senior safety is compromised. For more information on this growing national crisis, see this report from the American Association for Justice.
Your help is needed to send a strong message to nursing homes and assisted living facilities that you care about and support our senior citizens. Please click the link below and sign the pledge to limit forced arbitration and make the lives of our seniors safer.
Manning & Zimmerman: Do You Know What Hazards are in Your Home?
All of us use hazardous substances in our homes. To prevent accidental poisoning or exposure, it is important that we recognize these hazards and store these products safely. Check out these helpful resources and tips from Manning & Zimmerman in this issue of You Should Know.
Caution – School is in Session!
Every fall, more than 55 million children across the U.S. head back to school. Here are some safety recommendations for drivers to help keep kids safe:
* Slow down. There are speed limits in school zones for a reason!
* Always come to a complete stop and check carefully for children.
* Taking your eyes off the road for just two seconds doubles your chances of crashing!
* Check for children on the sidewalk, in the driveway and around your vehicle before slowly backing up.
* Watch for children riding on bicycles.
* Talk to your teen driver(s) about safe driving.
Common cleaners are the number two cause of dangerous exposures in the United States. As more chemicals are used in our homes and workplaces, it is important to know what substances are dangerous and how to avoid contamination. According to the American Association of Poison Control Centers, pain medication, cosmetic and personal care items, and household cleaners were the substances most frequently involved in human exposures. The good news is that government regulators and private retail chains are helping to limit what gets used in the products we encounter daily.
In 2013, both Wal-Mart and Target, two of the world’s largest retailers, announced ambitious sustainability plans. Both companies plan to bring increased transparency to the ingredients used in products and called for a reduction in especially harmful chemicals used in the products they sell. While the plans were aimed more generally at sustainability and reducing negative environmental impacts, both set strict guidelines for safer products.
The U.S. government has also joined the fight against hazardous chemicals and misleading ingredient labels. In early June, the U.S. House Committee on Energy & Commerce approved HR 2576, a bill that would expand the Toxic Substance Control Act of 1976 and allow the EPA to test for and regulate hazardous substances in consumer goods and products. The bill, if passed, would also allow the EPA to evaluate substances for unreasonably risky ingredients. It would also limit any state or local government’s power in regulating a chemical substance that the EPA has determined safe under its intended uses.
You Should Know How to Avoid Contamination
While the government and private businesses work to make consumer goods safer, it is still important to always use caution when dealing with potentially dangerous chemicals. In 2013 the Center for Disease Control reported that there were 38,851 unintentional poisoning deaths that year alone. Never mix chemicals when cleaning, and always wear gloves and wash your hands thoroughly. Dangerous products are not limited just to cleaning supplies; others come in the form of carbon monoxide, lead paints, asbestos and other harmful building supplies, as well as cosmetics and lawn care products. To avoid these dangers, use carbon monoxide alarms, always have an inspector walk through and test any new building that you may be considering purchasing, and take extreme caution when using fertilizers and pesticides.
Storing Toxic Chemicals
Store cleaners and dangerous substances in a well-ventilated area.
Keeping chemicals locked away and out of the reach of youngsters and pets is paramount to preventing accidental contamination and poisonings. When storing hazardous chemicals and cleaning supplies, always:
Keep chemicals in a well-ventilated area like a garage or shed;
Read labels and follow directions accordingly;
Store chemicals out of reach of children or pets;
Store chemicals away from food storage;
Be sure containers are sealed tightly before storing;
Keep soaps and dental hygiene products out of the reach of kids;
Lock medicines away if possible; and
Always read and follow label instructions on proper storage.
If you are ever exposed to a dangerous chemical or have a question about a product or ingredient, call the Poison Control Center Hotline 24/7 at 1-800-222-1222.
Odds, Ends and More
And the winner of the 2015 Justice Served award is… Click below to find out, see the survey results and browse AWESOME reader comments.
Our Manchester divorce lawyer at the Law Office of Manning & Zimmerman PLLC can explain that each state is responsible for establishing guidelines rules related to how to calculate child support. In New Hampshire, the state requires both parents to share in the economic responsibility of supporting their children.
Manchester divorce lawyer Anna Goulet Zimmerman can explain that New Hampshire uses specific guidelines that set the amount of child support that the obligated parent should pay. The total support obligation owed to the child is determined by multiplying the combined net income of both parents by the appropriate percentage that is established in the guidelines. This obligation is then divided between the parents based on their proportional share of their adjusted income. Adjusted income means that the gross income is first taken, and then certain amounts are subtracted from this figure. The subtracted amounts include court-ordered child support or spousal support already paid, mandatory retirement contributions, actual state income taxes paid, and child care expenses that are incurred so the parent can work. The percentage is based on the number of children for whom support is being ordered.
Deviation from Guidelines
The amount of support that is associated with the guidelines is legally presumed to be the proper amount. However, courts can consider special circumstances in ordering a higher or lower amount of support. Manchester divorce lawyer Anna Goulet Zimmerman may help prepare legal briefs to address why the amount should be different.
Manchester divorce lawyer Anna Goulet Zimmerman can explain that the parents can reach an agreement regarding child support that is not exactly the same as the amount of child support that would be ordered if the guidelines were applied. In such cases, however, the court must assess whether the agreement should be approved.
Legal Assistance from a Manchester Divorce Lawyer
If you have any questions regarding New Hampshire’s child support laws, contact Manchester divorce lawyer Anna Goulet Zimmerman at the Law Office of Manning & Zimmerman PLLC at (603) 624-7200.
I cannot say enough about the assistance I received from Ellen Musinsky and Donald Manning. With my recent illness it was difficult to navigate the disability laws. Not only were Ellen and Donald there for me professionally to accomplish this, but they were also there with an empathetic ear to offer emotional support. They helped me through a very difficult time in my life but most importantly got me benefits that I am certain would have been denied without their knowledge and expertise. I can’t thank you both enough!
While a Manchester divorce lawyer at the Law Office of Manning & Zimmerman PLLC can help spouses prepare for the journey ahead, many times clients adversely affect their own case. Some of the common mistakes that spouses make during the divorce are outlined below and in the following video.
Before a spouse decides to get a divorce, he or she should meet with a Manchester divorce lawyer. While this may make the spouse feel disloyal, it is important that he or she takes certain steps to prepare for the upcoming divorce. There are certain financial moves that he or she can make and certain documents that he or she can gather that will make the divorce process easier and less expensive.
Divorce is an emotionally-wrought time. Feelings of disloyalty, heartbreak, and bitterness can easily arise. This may cause spouses to fight over every potential issue in the divorce, from who will get what asset to how the children should be raised. In many divorces, if the spouses can find a way to cooperate, it is easier and less expensive for both of them, not to mention the children.
Communicating Too Much
However, spouses also need to be aware that they are technically adversaries in an upcoming legal proceeding. Sometimes a spouse may trust the other spouse too much and divulge information that can later be used against him or her in the proceedings. A Manchester divorce lawyer at the Law Office of Manning & Zimmerman PLLC can help explain what type of information a spouse can share with the other spouse and what type of information should remain a confidential discussion between attorney and client.
Legal Assistance from our Manchester Divorce Lawyer
If you have questions about other mistakes that are commonly made in a divorce, watch the following video, then contact a Manchester divorce lawyer at the Law Office of Manning & Zimmerman PLLC at (603) 624-7200 to schedule a confidential consultation.
Areas Served: The attorneys of Manning & Zimmerman represent clients in courts and cities throughout New Hampshire, including: Manchester, Nashua, Concord, Derry, Dover, Rochester, Salem, Merrimack, Hudson, Londonderry, Keene, Portsmouth, Bedford, Goffstown, Laconia, Hooksett, and Hillsborough County, Rockingham County, Merrimack County, Strafford County, Grafton County, Cheshire County, Belknap County, Carroll County, Sullivan County, and Coös County.