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NH injury lawyers

NH Injury Lawyers Discuss Toy Safety

Trouble in Toyland

Protect Smiles: Buy Safe Toys

The annual Trouble in Toyland survey provides toy safety guidelines and buying tips. [Download report]

According to the NH injury lawyers at Manning & Zimmerman Law, U.S. consumers spent about $20 billion on toys in 2017 with projections for a seven percent increase in sales for 2018. In short, toys are big business. The downside: a market flooded with toys that, in some cases, are not tested for safety.

Fortunately for American toy buyers (and kids), the definitive annual toy safety survey from the U.S. Public Interest Research Group (U.S. PIRG) is here. For more than 30 years, the Trouble in Toyland report has identified toys on store shelves that pose potential safety hazards to children. You can download the report here. Key findings this year include:

  • Toxic Slime: Several popular ‘slimes’ on the market have levels of boron that are 15 times the level recommended by the European Union. According to the United States Environmental Protection Agency, ingesting boron can cause nausea, vomiting, rashes and seizures. [Download report]
     
  • Missing Choking Warnings: Among children’s toys and products, balloons are the number one cause of suffocation death. [Download report] However, in a survey of five search pages for balloons sold on Amazon, U.S. PIRG found no choking hazard labels on 87 percent of the latex balloons marketed to parents of children under two. This is a violation of the law. Never let a child under the age of three play with balloons.
     
  • Smart Toys Can Be TOO Smart: Websites, apps, and smart toys are all capable of collecting information about users. This includes children under 13. Earlier this year, the Federal Trade Commission charged electronic toymaker VTech with collecting personal data on hundreds of thousands of children without parent consent or knowledge. It was also alleged that a hacker gained access to that data during a security breach in 2015. Amazon’s popular children’s tablet, the Amazon Fire HD Kids Edition, can share a child’s private information with third parties for advertising purposes while not deleting the data it stores.

Keeping Kids Safe

Onward and upward to the toy store! If you are shopping for kids this holiday season, our NH injury lawyers urge you to be sure to keep this safety checklist handy – and check it twice.

  • Toys with sound: If a toy is too loud for you, it could be loud enough to damage your child’s hearing. Test toys to make sure the sound level isn’t painful. 
  • Ingredients: Read labels on the back of toys to look for dangerous ingredients or chemicals. If these substances are ingested your child could get very sick.
  • Toys with small parts:  Toys marketed to children six and above may contain small parts that pose choking hazards for younger children. Look for age guidelines. “Hatching” toys are very popular, but the break-apart packaging can create very small pieces. Before your child plays with a toy for the first time, see if smaller parts fit through a toilet paper roll. This is a great test to indicate if there is a possible choking hazard.
  • Smart Toys: Sites, apps, games and smart toys might be collecting private data from your child  and could be hacked. Always evaluate privacy policies before using, and monitor any data requested on your child. 
  • Makeup: “Children’s” makeup is not considered a toy, so it is not regulated at the same level. Avoid makeup for kids.
  • Previously owned or older toys: Search for recalls on older toys to ensure a safe gift.

Contact the Experienced NH Injury Lawyers at Manning & Zimmerman

If you have been injured by another person’s careless acts, contact the experienced NH injury lawyers at the Law Office of Manning & Zimmerman PLLC. We may be reached at (603) 232-7278 and by email at info@MZLawNH.com. You may also use the “contact us” or chat feature on our website.

It is essential that you have competent legal representation from the onset of your case through litigation. Big insurance companies have lawyers looking out for their interests and you should too!

Experienced.  Knowledgeable.  Personally Committed to Justice.

NH Injury Lawyers
Manchester Injury Attorneys

Manchester Injury Attorneys Discuss Healthcare Marketing

Unethical Practices Taint Some Healthcare Marketing

Ad spending by drug companies has doubled in the past four years

The Manchester injury attorneys at Manning & Zimmerman Law know that when a doctor writes a prescription, most of us assume we’ll walk out of the pharmacy with the drug best suited for the diagnosis. But what if the doctor chose a new drug based on a big marketing push by the manufacturer? Or maybe it’s the other way around. Patients often request a particular brand-name drug after seeing hundreds of television ads. These ads often have actors or well-known celebrities vouching for its effectiveness.

So far in 2018, pharmaceutical companies have shelled out $2.8 billion to run direct-to-consumer television ads touting the benefits of about 70 prescription drugs. Between 2012 and 2016, the number of television ads for medications grew 65 percent as companies increasingly target the exploding and lucrative baby boomer market.

The drug companies are not alone in playing the healthcare advertising sweepstakes. Hospitals are spending more than ever on advertising and, as with other products, that advertising is filled with lots of promises, according to a professor of marketing at Northwestern University. “So a hospital can go out and say, ‘This is where miracles happen. And here’s Joe. Joe was about to die. And now Joe is going to live forever.’ ”

Pushing the Ethical Boundaries

Some healthcare marketing and advertising crosses the line. Patient advocates both inside and outside the healthcare industry believe this distorts the truth about risk and effectiveness. Before pushing for a new medication advertised on television, consider the following:

Some celebrities endorse drugs or treatments without always saying they were paid to do so

  • Where are you getting your information? Glossy ads can be tempting. Online forums can be full of disinformation. Choose your sources carefully. For example, a 2014 study in the Journal of the American Osteopathic Association found that 90 percent of Wikipedia articles concerning the 10 costliest medical conditions contained inaccurate data. Keep in mind that Wikipedia articles can be edited by anyone, including people working for healthcare companies.
  • Who is selling you a medication or medical device? Celebrity endorsements are all the rage these days, from beauty products to insurance to – you guessed it – medications and remedies. A friendly and famous face may say he or she is promoting a new drug or treatment because of personal conviction, but what they might not be saying is they are often getting paid big bucks to do so. Truth in Advertising (TINA), a nonprofit that works to protect consumers from false advertising, filed formal complaints against GOOP, a lifestyle company run by Gwyneth Paltrow. They cite 51 examples of what they consider unsafe treatments, and argue that GOOP “does not possess the competent and reliable scientific evidence required by law to make such claims.”
  • Are the promises you hear vague or overly positive? Patients of difficult and even fatal diseases criticize what they see as overly positive ads for medications and treatments. These advertisements often feature happy, healed patients and their families with stories of miraculous recovery. But many patients say the ads spread false hope, or worse yet, make them feel as though they are still sick because of their own failings rather than the reality of their illnesses.
  • Is that new medication really necessary? When new drugs are patented and hit the market, they can only be sold exclusively for limited periods of time. Once a generic version is available, the price drops dramatically. This means that the manufacturers of brand-name medications need to push the new drug as aggressively as possible. They do this to recoup their investment and hit earnings targets. It also means that some companies create new medications that studies show are really not that different than existing medications. This is done so they can slap on a new name and start the brand-name marketing cycle all over again.
  • Is your doctor receiving money or perks from pharmaceutical companies? A ProPublica study revealed that doctors who receive money or meals from drug and device makers – even just small gifts – prescribe a higher percentage of brand-name drugs overall than doctors who don’t. Check out Dollars for Docs, a website that tracks payments made to healthcare professionals and facilities.

Cutting Through the Advertising Clutter

Our Manchester injury attorneys recommend asking, “Who can be trusted for good information about various healthcare treatments and medications?”

Talk to your doctor first. Ask about the side effects of a particular medication. Also ask if there is a generic available, and if they have experience with the recommended medication or treatment. Don’t be afraid to advocate for yourself if you feel as though you are being pushed into something unnecessary. That might also mean getting a second opinion. See more questions for your doctor here.

Do some of your own research as well, starting with the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA). Click here to check approvals and to see if a medication has been recalled. Then instead of a random Google search, look for healthcare websites that have a reputation for independence and trusted information. Examples include WebMD or Mayo Clinic.

Major news organizations will often run investigative stories about drugs or treatments with a suspicious background. They also investigate questionable relationships between those advocating a particular medication and the manufacturers.

And finally, the Manchester injury attorneys at Manning & Zimmerman Law  recommend that you be skeptical about the promises you hear made in healthcare advertising and marketing. As an executive director of Breast Cancer Action put it: “It’s the basics of marketing. In order to sell products and services, you have to sell hope.” In other words, buyer beware.

Contact Experienced Manchester Injury Attorneys for a Free Consultation

If you have been injured by another person’s careless acts, contact the experienced Manchester injury attorneys at the Law Office of Manning & Zimmerman PLLC. We may be reached at (603) 232-7278 and by email at info@MZLawNH.com. You may also use the “contact us” or chat feature on our website.

It is essential that you have competent legal representation from the onset of your case through litigation. Big insurance companies have lawyers looking out for their interests and you should too!

Experienced.  Knowledgeable.  Personally Committed to Justice.

Manchester injury attorneys

Share the Road: Motorcycle Accidents Can Be Prevented

Please Share the Road to Help Prevent Motorcycle Accidents

Fall is a beautiful time of year, especially here in the great state of New Hampshire. With the foliage comes more traffic to the roads, especially motorcycles. So it’s time to ask yourself if you are sharing the road and taking strides to help end motorcycle accidents.

The Truth Hurts

According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA), in 2016 there were 5,286 motorcyclists killed in traffic crashes nationwide. This is a 5 percent increase from 2015 (5,029). Motorcycle deaths have been on a steady increase over the last three years. Motorcycle death related accidents have accounted for 14 percent of total highway fatalities.

It is incredibly important for both motorists and riders to share the road and to take precautions to avoid fatal accidents.

What Motorists Need to Know

Driving a motorcycle and driving a car are two vastly different experiences. All motorists need to be aware of  safety challenges faced by motorcyclists.  The size and visibility on a motorcycle are completely different of that in a vehicle. Motorcycle riding practices also alter the reaction time speed and results.

Research and State-level data has  identified that other motorists (not the motorcycle driver) are at-fault in more than half of all multi-vehicle motorcycle-involved accidents. Not to mention that NHTSA-funded research has shown that people behind the wheels of passenger vehicles are distracted more than 50 percent of the time. It cannot be stressed enough that, not only for motorcyclists’ safety, but for everyone on the road, distracted driving is detrimental and fatal in many instances.

Motorcyclists Take Action

All motorcyclists need to be prepared and defensive drivers on the road. Pay attention to your surroundings and other drivers on the road. Take into consideration weather and temperatures upon riding. During fall, wet leaves can lead to slick conditions while riding. The best thing you can do to protect yourself is to use a DOT-approved motorcycle helmet. Doing so just might save your life!

They’re Not Just Warnings, it’s Real Life

As we regularly represent motorcyclists and their families, the motorcycle accidents attorneys at the Law Office of Manning & Zimmerman are grateful for the family of Michael Phelps. Michael was a beloved retired teacher from Concord who was killed on his motorcycle by a distracted driver. His family has shared his story (below) in an effort to help educate others and saves lives.  No one ever assumes they will be in a horrific accident and no one ever thinks they could ever be the cause of one. The sad truth is it happens. The personal injury attorneys at the Law Office of Manning and Zimmerman ask everyone to please end distracted driving to help save lives.

Contact Experienced New Hampshire Motorcycle Accidents Attorneys for a Free Consultation

If you have been injured by another person’s careless acts, contact the experienced NH motorcycle accidents lawyers at the Law Office of Manning & Zimmerman PLLC. We may be reached at (603) 556-4685 and by email at info@MZLawNH.com. You may also use the “contact us” or chat feature on our website.

It is essential that you have competent legal representation from the onset of your case through litigation. Big insurance companies have lawyers looking out for their interests and you should too!

Experienced.  Knowledgeable.  Personally Committed to Justice.

NH motorcycle accidents lawyers

New Hampshire workers' compensation

New Hampshire Workers’ Compensation: Third-Party Claims

In the New Hampshire workers’ compensation system, employees are prohibited from suing their employers or co-workers for their workplace injuries. However, an injured worker may be able to bring a lawsuit against a third-party wrongdoer. These are non-employees (known as “third parties”) who, at least in part, may have contributed to the employee’s injuries. Below is a list of issues that the New Hampshire workers’ compensation attorneys at Manning & Zimmerman Law consider when handling work injury claims:

Was a third-party potentially responsible for the injuries?

The best time to examine the possibility of a third-party claim is during your first meeting with a New Hampshire workers’ compensation attorney. The reason for this is two-fold: 1) The existence of a third-party claim could substantially impact the value of your case. 2) There may be a different statute of limitations for the two claims.

If your work injury lawyer decides to open both claims, best practices include opening a separate file for each claim. This is done to keep track of each statute of limitations independently. Ideally, your injury attorney would handle both the workers’ compensation and third-party liability claims. However, if that is not possible, the attorneys should communicate regularly. This ensures that neither attorney takes an action that would negatively impact their mutual client’s other claim. It also reduces the amount of duplicative work.

Scrutinize asserted New Hampshire workers’ compensation lien amounts

When there is a third-party liability claim, New Hampshire workers’ compensation insurance carriers are, by law, entitled to liens for payments previously made, and for future payments made on your behalf, either through settlement or judgment. There is no need for the insurance carrier to intervene in the third-party suit to protect its lien. The lien arises by operation of law. The insurance carrier’s lien rights are divided into two separate and distinct rights – its right to recoupment and it’s right to a “holiday” or “offset” against future payments. The carrier may waive one right while retaining the other.

These liens can be negotiated by the New Hampshire workers’ compensation lawyers at Manning & Zimmerman Law. First off, per the lien statute, the lien must be reduced by the carrier’s pro rata share of expenses and costs for bringing the third-party claim. Additionally, certain expenses incurred by the insurance carrier are prohibited from inclusion in any lien but may appear in the itemization of amounts paid provided by the insurance carrier. For example, administrative claims costs, vocational rehabilitation expenses, and interest cannot be recovered and, accordingly, should be removed from the calculation of a lien amount. In addition, work injury lawyers should consider negotiating an even lower repayment or holiday if, in your third-party claim, you have limited insurance available, there are significant liability problems, or the claim would be expensive to pursue.

If the insurance carrier refuses to negotiate or appropriately reduce its lien, your New Hampshire workers’ compensation attorney at Manning & Zimmerman Law  can request a hearing on the equitable repayment of the lien before the Superior Court.

Hearing at Department of Labor

During the litigation of your claim, the insurance carrier may deny coverage of one or more of your medical bills. In order to get that bill paid, a hearing on payment before the Department of Labor would normally be requested. Before you do so, however, if you have a third-party liability claim, your injury attorney should take time to consider the effect of a Department of Labor decision upholding the carrier’s decision to deny payment of that particular bill(s) on your future ability to present that bill as evidence of an injury-related medical expense in any hearing or trial regarding your third-party claim. A negative decision from the Department of Labor will be binding. Also, the potential detriment of requesting a hearing on a particular bill may outweigh the potential benefit under certain circumstances.

Third-party claim settlements must be approved

The New Hampshire workers’ compensation attorneys at Manning & Zimmerman Law know that no settlement by an employee against a third-party is binding until approved by the Labor Commissioner. Actions that have already commenced are subject to approval by the court or arbitration proceeding where the action is pending. The purpose of this process is to protect the lien rights of the workers’ compensation insurance carrier. Accordingly, the documents submitted to the Labor Commissioner upon settlement, or the Court through a Petition to Approve the Settlement, require that the amount of the lien be provided. Also, a portion of the settlement funds must be paid to the insurance carrier in satisfaction of its statutory lien.

Contact Experienced New Hampshire Workers’ Compensation Attorneys

Workers are often worried about how they are going to pay for an attorney. Attorneys in the NH workers’ compensation system  are generally paid on a contingency fee basis (percentage of any future recovery). They may alternatively be paid by the insurance company after a successful hearing. Thus, in most cases, workers do not need to pay any fees up-front.

At Manning & Zimmerman Law, we are proud to fight for the rights of workers who have suffered workplace injuries. It is essential that you have experienced legal representation from the onset of your case through litigation. Big insurance companies have lawyers looking out for their interests and you should too! For a free consultation with our NH workers’ compensation attorneys, call (603) 671-3156, send us an email to info@MZLawNH.com, or use the “contact us” or chat feature on our website.

Experienced.  Knowledgeable.  Personally Committed to Justice.

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NH Injury Attorneys: Celebrating a Safer, More Just America

People Who Make a Difference

The NH injury attorneys at Manning & Zimmerman Law are pleased to present the 2018 Justice Served Awards. These recognitions honor each of these nominees for their commitment to a safer, more just America.

Martina Vendenberg
Martina Vandenberg helps lawyers fight human trafficking

Holding Human Traffickers Accountable For Their Crimes

Martina E. Vandenberg is the founder and president of The Human Trafficking Legal Center (HT Legal), a pro bono legal organization that trains lawyers to provide legal support to human trafficking victims. Vandenberg and HT Legal hope to decrease human trafficking, estimated to affect more than 400,000 people in the United States, through three objectives:

  1. Hold the U.S. government accountable. The government rarely prosecutes human trafficking cases, and even when it does, victims often are denied financial restitution. HT Legal conducts research to expose failures in the system, reach out to prosecutors and drive legal reform.
  2. Deter human traffickers by forcing them to pay compensation to victims. Even if traffickers are not prosecuted for criminal charges, there is another option for victims: civil litigation. HT Legal trains attorneys willing to represent victims at no cost and seek damages from traffickers and third parties that benefit from trafficking.
  3. Challenge impunity through strategic litigation. HT Legal and its partners use strategic litigation as a catalyst for this change by forcing government action, driving legal reform, punishing perpetrators and compelling companies to end or prevent abuses in their business practices.

Through HT Legal, Vandenberg has trained more than 3,200 pro bono attorneys nationwide to handle human trafficking cases.

Mike Moore
Mike Moore held Big Tobacco accountable and is now taking on Big Pharma

Stemming the Tide of Opioid Abuse Through Litigation

Mike Moore is a lawyer and former attorney general for Mississippi. In 1994, Moore was the first state attorney general to sue the tobacco industry for lying about nicotine addiction and to hold companies accountable for the cost to the public of treating sick smokers. He persuaded lawyers and other AGs from across the country to take on Big Tobacco, resulting in a $246 billion settlement, still the largest in U.S. history.

Last year, Moore decided to turn his sights on Big Pharma and the opioid abuse epidemic. Deaths from prescription opioids – drugs like oxycodone, hydrocodone, and methadone – have quadrupled since 1999. Moore and his colleagues argue that the original marketing for OxyContin (by drugmaker Purdue) as non-addictive was based on questionable research. Since then, more than 400 cities, counties and Native American tribes have filed lawsuits against pharmaceutical manufacturers, distributors and pharmacy chains. As with the settlement from Big Tobacco, Moore hopes to take any damages awarded and put it toward opioid abuse education and prevention.

Gretchen Carlson
Gretchen Carlson advocates against mandatory arbitration clauses in employment contracts

Protecting Employees Victimized by Sexual Assault

Forced arbitration clauses, which are now used by a wide range of companies, are now found in over 55 percent of employment contracts. Instead of going to court, employees must settle the dispute in secret arbitrations, usually by an arbitrator chosen by the defendant. In cases of sexual assault or harassment, these forced arbitration clauses can protect harassers from public consequences, opening the door to serial and long-term harassment.

Forced arbitration clauses not only protect abusers from a court of law, but also silence employees from speaking publicly once through arbitration. Gretchen Carlson, a former Fox News anchor, sued Fox News after she was fired for allegedly refusing sexual advances from Fox News Chairman Roger Ailes. Fox attempted to have her claims adjudicated in closed-door mandatory arbitration instead of court, effectively requiring that the details of her case be legally hidden from the public. Since settling her lawsuit with Fox News, Gretchen Carlson has been an advocate for legislation that prohibits forced arbitration clauses in employment and consumer contracts.

Sevonne Huang
Sevonne Huang is taking on Tesla after her husband died in a crash

Wife of Husband Killed in Tesla Wreck Hopes to Prevent More Deaths

Walter Huang died on March 23 after his Tesla Model X, which had engaged its Autopilot system, crashed head-on into a barrier on Highway 101 in California. Walter was a 38-year-old engineer, husband, and father of two young children. When Walter’s wife, Sevonne, saw the crash on the news, she knew right away it was her husband. Sevonne said she not only recognized his car, but knew that her husband was involved when she saw where the crash occurred. Walter had previously complained about the car moving toward that same barrier while on autopilot before the crash.

Despite settling a class-action lawsuit with several Model X and Model S customers, which alleged that the assisted-driving Autopilot system was “essentially unusable and demonstrably dangerous,” Tesla still blamed Walter Huang for the crash in a statement. Sevonne has hired a firm to sue Tesla in an effort to bring them to justice and prevent future crashes. “I just want this tragedy not to happen again to another family,” she said.

About the Justice Served Awards

The Justice Served Awards celebrate the stories of injured people, their families, and advocates who make a difference in protecting the health, safety, and legal rights of others by helping to:

  • Uncover negligence or other irresponsible behavior by organizations that put their interests ahead of the public interest;
  • Prompt government action by shedding new light on defective products, services or other practices;
  • Trigger manufacturing and quality assurance practices that lead to safer products and services; and
  • Increase public awareness that helps prevent additional injuries and protect an individual’s right to civil justice in a court of law.

Contact Experienced NH Injury Attorneys for a Free Consultation

Have you or a loved one been injured due to another person’s careless acts? If so, it is essential that you have the competent legal representation of NH injury attorneys from the onset of your case through litigation. Big insurance companies have lawyers looking out for their interests and you should too!

For a free consultation, contact the NH injury attorneys at the Law Office of Manning & Zimmerman PLLC. We may be reached at (603) 605-0547 or by email at info@MZLawNH.com. We may also be contacted by using the “contact us” or chat feature on our website.

Experienced.  Knowledgeable.  Personally Committed to Justice.

nh car accident lawyers

The NH injury attorneys at Manning & Zimmerman Law invite you to subscribe to our newsletter. You can also follow us on Twitter.

 

What Happens When an Uninsured Motorist Causes a Car Crash?

Managing an Uninsured Motorist Claim

New Hampshire is one of the few states in the U.S. that does not require its drivers to carry car insurance. In cases where one driver’s fault causes either property or bodily damage, the driver is required to pay for any expenses that the injured party suffers. The at-fault party’s license is suspended until they can show they can pay for the crash they caused. Sometimes they do this out of pocket. Other times, they come up with a repayment plan. Purchasing car insurance after a crash is another way to cover the costs owed to the injured party.

Have you been in a serious car crash? If so, did it involve bodily injury and/or major damage to your car? In that instance, it helps to have a NH injury lawyer representing you in your uninsured motorist claim against the at-fault party. The Law Office of Manning & Zimmerman PLLC has helped numerous New Hampshire motorists recover damages from negligent drivers who either did not carry car insurance or did not carry enough car insurance.

Worst Case Scenario: The Motorist Won’t or Can’t Pay

No insurance system in any state is foolproof, and New Hampshire has its strengths and weaknesses. If an uninsured driver causes a major crash they can prove payment by purchasing car insurance. Their new car insurance policy would cover the difference. But what about situations in which a motorist cannot afford car insurance?

While you can sue the motorist directly and their license won’t be restored until they start paying you for your damages, a motorist who cannot afford to make insurance payments is not a motorist who has a vast quantity of assets. You can sue them and win a verdict. But if they file for bankruptcy, you still may never see very much of the money they owe you. Now what?

This is where having uninsured motorist coverage can be a great asset. This form of insurance covers you in the following three cases:

  • The at-fault driver is uninsured;
  • The at-fault driver does not carry enough coverage to settle your damages;
  • You’re involved in a hit-and-run crash.

When a motorist is uninsured and causes a crash, your uninsured motorist policy pays out. In other words, you make an uninsured motorist claim against your own policy and the insurance company reimburses you for your damages. They can then turn around and sue the at-fault driver for the money they paid to you.

Understanding Uninsured Motorist Coverage

The State of New Hampshire requires auto insurance companies to offer Uninsured/Underinsured Motorist Coverage (UMC) in an amount that equals your liability coverage. So if you have a liability coverage of $25,000, the insurance company must offer you a UMC of $25,000. If you carry $75,000 in liability coverage, the insurance company must offer you a UMC of $75,000.

The reason the state has to force insurance companies to offer this insurance is because they would really rather not. Simply put, if forced to pay out should an uninsured motorist causes a crash, it can be difficult to recover that money from the motorist. In many instances, they will look for reasons to deny your uninsured motorist claim.

Are you locked in a battle with an insurance company over a claim? If so, it helps to have a New Hampshire injury lawyer prepare the case for you.

Why? Because insurance companies will go out of their way to deny a claim whenever possible. Every claim you make needs the backing of proof. A Manchester injury attorney at Manning & Zimmerman Law can help you with this process.

Contact a New Hampshire Personal Injury Attorney

If your uninsured motorist claim is denied, you may need the help of an injury attorney to make your case. Don’t leave such decisions to the insurance company’s discretion. For a free consultation, contact the NH injury attorneys at the Law Office of Manning & Zimmerman PLLC. We may be reached at (603) 605-0547 or by email at info@MZLawNH.com. We may also be contacted by using the “contact us” or chat feature on our website.

Experienced.  Knowledgeable.  Personally Committed to Justice.

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The NH injury attorneys at Manning & Zimmerman Law invite you to subscribe to our newsletter. You can also follow us on Twitter.

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NH Injury Attorneys Discuss Defective Medical Devices

Defective Medical Devices Can Hurt More Than Help

nh injury attorneys
From Nov. 2002 to Dec. 2012, 41 percent of all recalled devices from 20 companies were orthopedic.

According to the NH injury attorneys at Manning & Zimmerman Law, the United States Census Bureau has reported that the U.S. population will reach a turning point in 2030. That is the year when every surviving member of the baby boomer generation will be 65 or older. Seniors will outnumber children for the first time in U.S. history and will make up one-fifth of the American population.

This rise in the geriatric population has coincided with expanded medical technology. This includes the manufacture and sale of implanted devices. Diagnoses for arthritis and other orthopedic diseases and injuries are predicted to rise as the baby boomer population ages. Meanwhile, implanted devices for orthopedic injuries are already causing complications on a grand scale.

Devices Injure Patients and Add Millions to Medical Bills

Medical devices are often not scrutinized or regulated at the same level as drugs. This can cause severe injuries or death when they do not work properly. Most devices are not tested independently. They go through testing that is financed by the device manufacturer, so results are often skewed in their favor. The U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) even has a controversial “fast track” 510(k) program. This program quickly approves more than 3,000 new devices each year because they are similar to old devices. One study has shown that orthopedic devices approved by the 510(k) program, instead of the much more comprehensive Premarket Approval (PMA) program, are 11.5 percent more likely to be recalled. Yet the FDA currently plans to expand this program.

The approval of these devices means big money for manufacturers, with a global orthopedic market estimated at around $4 billion. The race to get these implants out onto the market is putting profits over patients.

Some stories of defective implants that have injured patients:

  • Hip Implants: Tissue death, bone erosion, and extreme pain are some of the problems caused by the defective DePuy hip implant. In November 2017, six patients were awarded $247 million after a jury found that DePuy parent company Johnson & Johnson lied about the Pinnacle hip implant. In 2013, The New York Times reported that Johnson & Johnson knew an all-metal hip implant would fail within five years in nearly 40 percent of patients who had the surgery.
  • Knee Implants: DePuy was back in the news earlier this year when a man sued after his Attune knee replacement failed, causing severe pain and two follow-up surgeries. This followed a 2017 study by the Journal of Knee Surgerywhich found that the Attune knee arthroplasty system experiences an “unusually high” rate of early failure of its tibial components. Patients complained of pain, loss of motion and effusion of body fluids.

Signs and Symptoms of Implant Failure

There are many adverse effects of orthopedic device failure. If you’re worried about a potentially faulty device, here are some signs to look for:

nh injury attorneys
  • Pain and/or swelling at the location of the implant
  • Numbness
  • Impaired mobility
  • Loosening of the implant
  • Fracture in the surrounding areas
  • Symptoms associated with metal poisoning if your implant is metal-on-metal: Skin rash, cardiomyopathy, sudden neurological or psychological changes, impairment of renal function, thyroid dysfunction

If you have any type of medical device in your body, be sure to check if it has been recalled by the FDA. Finally, if a faulty orthopedic implant has affected you or someone you love, don’t hesitate to consider legal advice. Painful complications, surgeries, and excessive medical bills should not be the price you pay for the mistakes of device makers.

Contact Experienced NH Injury Attorneys for a Free Consultation

Have you or a loved one been injured due to another person’s careless acts? If so, it is essential that you have competent legal representation from the onset of your case through litigation. Big insurance companies have lawyers looking out for their interests and you should too!

For a free consultation, contact the NH injury attorneys at the Law Office of Manning & Zimmerman PLLC. We may be reached at (603) 605-0547 or by email at info@MZLawNH.com. We may also be contacted by using the “contact us” or chat feature on our website.

Experienced.  Knowledgeable.  Personally Committed to Justice.

nh car accident lawyers

The NH injury attorneys at Manning & Zimmerman Law invite you to subscribe to our newsletter. You can also follow us on Twitter.

New Hampshire injury attorneys

Courts Wrestle with Damages When Pets are Injured

New Hampshire Injury Attorneys
Discuss Pet Injuries

The New Hampshire injury attorneys at Manning and Zimmerman Law know that furry, scaly, or feathered companions are nearly a given in most American homes (including ours). It is estimated that 68 percent of all American households own pets, and in 2017 these households spent over $69 billion on food, vet care, and more for their beloved companions. Clearly, an injury to a pet can be traumatic and expensive for owners, especially if it was caused by the negligence of another party. Consider these legal options:

Criminal and Civil Actions

Criminal charges: There are criminal laws against animal cruelty in all 50 states. If you believe there was willful and malicious intent to injure or kill your pet, the New Hampshire animal cruelty laws might apply. Immediately file a complaint with local law enforcement and provide as much detail as possible. If charged and found guilty, perpetrators of animal abuse can serve jail time and be held responsible for damages.

Civil action: According to the New Hampshire injury attorneys at Manning and Zimmerman Law, you may also be entitled to monetary damages in civil court if someone negligently injures or kills your animal companion, regardless of whether it was intentional or accidental. In these cases, you are generally entitled to the “market value” of your pet. Pets are considered property, and a market value is assigned based on a number of factors, including but not limited to:

  • Pedigree
  • Purchase price
  • Special abilities, training, or awards
  • Age and general health

You may also recover the veterinary costs incurred while caring for your pet after the injury.

Emotional Distress

Legal descriptions aside, we all know that pets are not mere personal property. They become beloved friends, companions, and part of the family. Over the years, pet owners and animal advocacy groups have pushed the courts to recognize emotional distress after a pet is negligently injured or killed. One recent case of note involved a 2012 lawsuit filed by a family in California after a neighbor attacked the family dog with a baseball bat. The injuries were so severe that surgery was required. The family was awarded veterinary costs as well as damages for emotional distress.

However, most courts have followed years of precedent and ruled against recognizing emotion-based damages in animal injury cases. In the recent case of a dog that was accidentally euthanized, the Supreme Court of Texas said: “We acknowledge the grief of those whose companions are negligently killed. Relational attachment is unquestionable. But it is also uncompensable. We reaffirm our long-settled rule … Pets are property in the eyes of the law, and we decline to permit non-economic damages rooted solely in an owner’s subjective feelings.”

Visit the Animal Legal Defense Fund for more information on what to do if your companion animal has been wrongly injured or killed.

10 Steps to Follow After a Pet Injury

Aside from the pain, an injured pet will most likely be confused or scared. Take these 10 steps immediately after your pet is hurt:

  • First and foremost, be aware that injured pets may bite or scratch even their owner. Pain and fear can make your pet unpredictable.
  • Perform an examination slowly and gently. Stop if the pet becomes more agitated.
  • If necessary, muzzle your pet – but NOT if it is vomiting.
  • Call your veterinarian or emergency vet clinic before you arrive so they can prepare.
  • Stabilize any injuries if you can with splints, bandages, etc.
  • Transport the animal in a carrier to prevent additional injuries.
  • Keep your pet’s medical records accessible and bring them with you. Take copies on vacation as well.
  • If your animal has been mistakenly or deliberately injured or killed, take pictures. Include wide shots of where they were found and close-ups of injuries. Ask your veterinarian to document all injuries.
  • Following your veterinary visit, contact law enforcement. Report the incident and ask them to come to the scene. Get contact information for any and all witnesses.
  • If your animal has been killed, ask your veterinarian to perform a necropsy to determine the cause of death.

This comprehensive Pet First Aid brochure from the American Veterinary Medical Association can be printed, filled out, and kept with your pet’s medical records in the event of an injury.

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Contact New Hampshire Injury Attorneys for a Free Consultation

It is essential that you have competent legal representation from the onset of your case through litigation. Big insurance companies have lawyers looking out for their interests and you should too!

For a free consultation, contact the New Hampshire injury attorneys at the Law Office of Manning & Zimmerman PLLC. We may be reached at (603) 239-2315 or by email at info@MZLawNH.com. We may also be contacted by using the “contact us” or chat feature on our website.

Experienced.  Knowledgeable.  Personally Committed to Justice.

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The New Hampshire injury attorneys at Manning & Zimmerman Law invite you to subscribe to our newsletter. You can also follow us on Twitter.

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Civil Litigation Could Help End Human Trafficking

Human trafficking is a form of modern-day slavery. Traffickers use force, fraud, or coercion to control victims for the purpose of commercial exploitation. This can encompass sexual exploitation, indentured servitude, forced labor, forced marriage, or even organ harvesting. Human trafficking is a silent and insidious industry that affects an estimated 45 million people worldwide, including an estimated 57,700 right here in the United States.

Human Trafficking Types
2012 global estimate of forced labor, International Labour Organization

MYTHSex trafficking is the only form of human trafficking. FACTLabor trafficking – a form of modern-day slavery – is much more common but rarely prosecuted. According to the International Labour Organization, 68 percent of human trafficking worldwide (and a majority in the U.S.) involves forced labor, 10 percent state-imposed labor and 22 percent forced prostitution.

MYTH: Human trafficking occurs only on the black market. FACT: Human trafficking touches many legitimate industries, including agriculture, mining, hospitality, restaurant and food services, domestic and home services, health care, the garment industry and more. In fact, most consumers here in America and throughout the world have likely benefited at some point from low-cost products or services made possible by men, women, and children who are forced into slave labor.

“On the Cusp of a New Movement”

Very few perpetrators are ever brought to justice through criminal proceedings. In the United States, for example, only 208 federal indictments were handed down for human trafficking in 2014, and only 18 of those were for alleged forced labor. Many reasons are cited for this failure, from corruption to insufficient resources for law enforcement to lack of political will. But as pointed out in a recent report by The Human Trafficking Pro Bono Legal Center, “a number of landmark cases heard by civil courts, as well as by regional and international human rights bodies, have resulted in significant verdicts.”

human trafficking
Men hired after hurricanes Katrina and Rita were held in forced labor by a U.S. company.

In one recent case, a U.S. maritime services corporation paid corrupt brokers for hundreds of skilled workers from India to help repair damage from Hurricane Katrina. After several workers sued, a jury found the company held the men in forced labor, awarding the workers $20 million. Meanwhile, food giants Nestlé, Cargill and Archer Daniels Midland are facing lawsuits in the U.S. for the alleged use of child slaves in cocoa farming in the Ivory Coast.

How Civil Litigation Could Help End Modern-Day Slavery

Civil litigation hits companies where it hurts, both in the bottom line and in the court of public opinion. Government leaders and rights advocates are beginning to push for more scrutiny of global supply chains, as exemplified by the California Transparency in Supply Chains Act, which was written “to ensure that large retailers and manufacturers provide consumers with information regarding their efforts to eradicate slavery and human trafficking from their supply chains…”

According to the Human Trafficking Pro Bono Legal Center, “Slowly, victims held in modern-day slavery are learning that they can bring their own suits for damages against the perpetrators. We are on the cusp of a new movement: accountability litigation to end modern-day slavery.”

How You Can Identify and Support Victims of Human Trafficking

Most victims of human trafficking are fearful of physical or legal retaliation for attempts to escape their situation. They are also manipulated and exploited into complacency. There are, however, many federal, state and local protections in place to help these people come forward. This is true even if they are in this country illegally or are involved in forced illegal activity. Be alert to these signs of human trafficking:

  • High-security measures in living areas
  • Large debts that can’t be paid off
  • Excessively long or unusual hours
  • Is not paid, paid very little or paid only through tips
  • Fearful, anxious, or submissive, especially if law enforcement is mentioned
  • Avoids eye contact
  • Poor physical health, including signs of abuse or malnourishment
  • Has no possessions, is not in control of money or identification
  • No knowledge of whereabouts or inability to provide a home address

For more details, click here.

If you suspect trafficking or are a victim or survivor yourself, contact the National Human Trafficking Hotline. Call toll-free from anywhere in the country 24-7, text, or chat online with a volunteer. You can also send an email or submit anonymous tips. Assistance is available in more than 200 languages.

Experienced.  Knowledgeable.  Personally Committed to Justice.

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Calculating Lost Income After a Car Crash

Are you seeking damages after a car crash? If so, the NH injury lawyers at Manning & Zimmerman Law will be able to help you calculate the total amount of compensation to which you are entitled. You will need to recover any lost earnings as part of the compensation you seek.

Time Off Work

Missed attendance at work due to your crash usually results in lost income and/or benefits. This can include lost wages; using any paid-time-off, such as sick or vacation time; or the need to work extra hours in the future in order to make up the time you missed. As your NH injury lawyers, we will need to confirm these losses through documentation from your boss or the human-resources department. We will request the following information:

  • Did you miss working any overtime while you were off?
  • How much time were you off work due to your injury?
  • Did missing work cause you stress or concern about losing your job or being able to complete assignments?
  • How much money would you earn as a result?
  • Did you use vacation or sick time in order to cover the time off?
  • Did missing work impact any opportunities for promotions?

Partial or Permanent Disability

The issue of time off work becomes even more complex if you suffer a permanent partial disability as a result of the crash. In addition, you might be placed on restricted duty with less pay after the crash. Our personal injury attorneys can help you determine lost income in this event. The U.S. government has data that addresses decreased earning capabilities for anyone who suffers a partial or permanent disability.

Special Considerations for the Self-Employed

A person working on straight commission or is self-employed might have some difficulty proving their amount of lost wages. You might be able to compare income tax records to show the difference in earnings before and after the crash. However, if you experience an increase in earnings, you will likely need to call on an industry economic expert in order to verify the related losses. You can also include the cost of hiring any substitute workers when calculating damages.

Contact Experienced NH Injury Lawyers for a Free Consultation

Determining lost earnings is an important part of resolving your lawsuit. At the Law Office of Manning & Zimmerman PLLC, we will help you calculate this figure, and any other monies you may be due, in order to arrive at a fair and just amount of compensation following a car crash.

Have you or a loved one been injured due to another person’s careless acts? If so, it is essential that you have competent legal representation from the onset of your case through litigation. Big insurance companies have lawyers looking out for their interests and you should too!

For a free consultation, contact the NH injury lawyers at the Law Office of Manning & Zimmerman PLLC. We may be reached at (603) 671-3156 or by email at info@MZLawNH.com. We may also be contacted by using the “contact us” or chat feature on our website.

Experienced.  Knowledgeable.  Personally Committed to Justice.

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The NH injury lawyers at Manning & Zimmerman Law invite you to subscribe to our newsletter. You can also follow us on Twitter.