Legal News

DC 'LOVE' Act Allows Marriage Licenses During Shutdown

FindLaw Headlines - Thu, 01/10/2019 - 15:10
During the federal shutdown, some things endure. Neither snow nor rain nor heat nor gloom of night stays these romantics from the swift completion of their appointed rounds.We aren't lauding the Postal Service. We're talking about love that endures. More specifically, LOVE. The District of Columbia Council unanimously approved......

Is Technology to Blame for an Increase in Car Thefts?

FindLaw Headlines - Thu, 01/10/2019 - 12:10
Some say crooks are stupid, but sometimes it's the victims. Keyless ignitions are on the rise, and so are car thefts. Many believe that the two are tied together, due car owners leaving fobs in the car in order to streamline their morning routine. But few things stall out......

Tesla Sued After High Speed Fatality in Florida

FindLaw Headlines - Wed, 01/09/2019 - 18:10
Speeding is always a safety risk, but especially on turns going nearly 100 miles per hour over the speed limit. The family of an 18-year-old boy killed in a Tesla car accident is suing the car manufacturer for what the attorney calls an "unreasonably dangerous" car.Edgar Monserratt alleges that the......

Tesla Sued After High Speed Fatality in Florida

FindLaw Injury News - Wed, 01/09/2019 - 18:10

Speeding is always a safety risk, but especially on turns going nearly 100 miles per hour over the speed limit. The family of an 18-year-old boy killed in a Tesla car accident is suing the car manufacturer for what the attorney calls an "unreasonably dangerous" car.

Edgar Monserratt alleges that the Tesla in which his son was riding when he died contained a defective battery. In addition, he claims the company was negligent for removing the speed governor on the car when it was last in the Tesla shop. Plaintiffs are seeking at least $18,000 in damages, but nothing will bring back their son.

Unsafe Car or Unsafe Driving?

Edgar Monserratt's 18-year-old son, Edgar Monserratt Martinez, was in the passenger seat of a Tesla Model S car driven by his friend Barrett Riley in Fort Lauderdale, Florida. Riley was driving down Seabreeze Boulevard at over 116 mph. Riley was in the right lane, but moved to the left to pass a car while going around a curve with a warning sign to slow to 25 mph. When Riley attempted to move back into the right lame, he hit an adjacent wall, came back into the road, then hit a light post on the opposite side of the street. At that point, the car erupted into flames and killed both Martinez and Riley.

Riley was no stranger to speeding in that car. In fact, about two months before the crash, after receiving a speeding ticket for going 112 mph down a Florida highway, Riley's parents had Tesla install a speed limiting governor on the car that would artificially cap the car's rate of speed at 85 mph. However, when the car was subsequently in the Tesla maintenance shop, Tesla removed the governor without Riley's parents permission.

Negligent Care and Negligent Manufacturing

Monserratt is claiming two causes of negligence in his case, one for the negligent removal of the governor, and another under defective product. "The Tesla S sedan had inadequate measures to prevent a post-collision fire and had inadequate measures to contain a fire," said Chicago attorney Philip Corboy Jr., one of the attorneys representing Monserratt.

There have been stories in the news about Tesla battery backs catching fire, and even reigniting, as Riley's did when it was on the tow truck being hauled away, and again at the salvage yard. But according to Tesla, the rate at which the batteries explode is far less than the average car. Since the Model S was released in June of 2012, there have been at least a dozen battery fires worldwide, according to plaintiff's attorney.

However, according to the National Fire Protection Association, fire departments respond to an average of 152,300 car fires per year in America alone. Tesla also claims that no car would have been able to refrain from catching car on an impact such as this one.

If you feel that you have been injured by a dangerous product, contact a products liability attorney. Product liability actions are often complex and vary somewhat by state law. An experienced attorney will be able to answer your questions and protect your interests, often at no cost to you.

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Top 5 Tips for Small Biz Before, During, and After Divorce

FindLaw Headlines - Wed, 01/09/2019 - 16:27
Amazon founder Jeff Bezos and longtime wife MacKenzie just announced they are divorcing. MacKenzie actually did the accounting for the fledgling online bookstore back in its first year in 1994. And while the split shouldn't affect Amazon's day-to-day operations, Bezos's bank account could definitely take a hit. Amazon is now......

Man Nearly Faced Jail Time for Criticizing Police Chief

FindLaw Headlines - Wed, 01/09/2019 - 16:09
Every parent knows that the best way to curb behavior is to be consistent and immediate with consequences. That leaves many wondering why an Exeter, New Hampshire man could be facing jail time long after the conditions were met to have his suspended sentence reinstated, but immediately after he......

When Is It Too Late to Sign a Prenup?

FindLaw Headlines - Wed, 01/09/2019 - 16:01
In 1993, Jeff Bezos married MacKenzie Tuttle. While he already had a successful career at hedge fund D.E. Shaw & Co., this was about a year before Bezos would launch a little online bookstore out of his Seattle garage. Amazon is now a trillion-dollar company, Bezos' net worth is estimated......

Politicians Can't Block Voters on Facebook, Court Rules

FindLaw Headlines - Wed, 01/09/2019 - 13:41
Politicians give up some personal rights as elected officials, and one of those is blocking haters. Though blocking those that challenge your viewpoints on Facebook is tempting and acceptable by the general public, that's not the case for politicians, according to one court. Another key take-away from this decision:......

Can I Legally Sign With an X?

FindLaw Headlines - Wed, 01/09/2019 - 13:34
With the advent of electronic signatures, and signatures on electronic devices that in no way resemble what was intended, one has to wonder how much signatures even matter. Does it need to resemble my name? And can I legally sign with just an "X"? The answer it yes, but......

Did Beyonce's Production Company Discriminate Against the Visually Impaired?

FindLaw Headlines - Tue, 01/08/2019 - 22:38
Beyonc�'s website production company, Parkwood, has been hit with a class action lawsuit claiming that Beyonc�.com's interface is inaccessible to visually impaired users, and thus in violation of the Americans with Disability Act (ADA). According to the filing, visually impaired individuals have a strong affinity for music, maybe stronger than......

What Happens If an International Student Commits a Crime?

FindLaw Headlines - Tue, 01/08/2019 - 16:12
International students have it slightly harder than domestic students, and not just on the language front. Those in the U.S. on a student visa must not only stay in school to keep their visas valid, but also stay away from even being suspected of certain crimes. And if found......

How Long in Solitary Confinement Is Too Long?

FindLaw Headlines - Tue, 01/08/2019 - 16:02
We've all heard about solitary confinement, where prisoners are kept in cells alone, with little or no human interaction. The practice -- sometimes used as punishment, or to keep the prisoner or other inmates and guards safe -- has come under additional scrutiny lately, however, as tales of abuse or......

Illegal Butt-Lift Doc Facing Homicide Charges

FindLaw Injury News - Tue, 01/08/2019 - 14:48

Third time's a charm, and perhaps this time, the sentencing will be more severe. Whalesca Castillo has been arrested for manslaughter in the death of Lesbia Ayala, a resident of Philadelphia who had traveled to the Bronx to have Castillo perform a "butt lift" without a medical license. Castillo has also been charged with criminally negligent homicide and the unauthorized practice of a profession. 

Castillo had already been found guilty and jailed twice before for providing illegal silicone injections. But this time, the client died. Facing repeat charges and showing only discontent for the law, Castillo may be in for some hard time.

Ayala Died Due to Embolism From Silicone Injection

Police were called to Castillo's home in the Bronx on June 17, 2018, to find Ayala in cardiac arrest. Transported to the hospital, she died soon thereafter, due to an embolism. Medical examiners tied the cardiac arrest to the silicone injections Ayala had received in her buttocks and thighs, presumably at the hands of Castillo.

"Notorious Unsanctioned Butt-Lifter"

Castillo has been described as a "notorious unsanctioned butt-lifter". In September 2011, Castillo faced charges related to operating a plastic surgery clinic without a medical license, and served a year in federal prison before being released with probation. Less than three years later, she was charged again with providing silicone enhancement procedures and went back to prison for another nine-month stretch.

Reckless Disregard -- For Human Life and the Law

In court documents obtained from her prior two criminal proceedings, Castillo showed little care, and even less expertise, in helping her clients through these cosmetic enhancements. For instance, when one client had complained of leaking blood and liquid from her buttocks and legs, Castillo replied "Buy some crazy glue and put it on it." 

In her 2011 federal case, she described how she would receive hundreds of silicone gel bottles from the Dominican Republic, marked in Spanish as "silicone for hair" or "for body massage", that she would inject into people's bodies at various houses out of which she operated. She would dispose of the vials and needles by throwing them on sidewalks. Though she charged $1,500 per procedure, and owned approximately $1.5 million in various real estate properties, she pleaded guilty in 2012 for falsely claiming $30,000 in welfare benefits from the city's Human Resource Administration.

If you have been injured by silicon injections administered outside of a hospital setting, you may be able to be compensated for your losses. Contact a local personal injury attorney to discuss the facts of your case to see if you have any legal remedies available to you. Most attorneys will hear your case at no cost during a free consultation, so you have nothing to lose, and potentially much to gain.

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Illegal Butt-Lift Doc Facing Homicide Charges

FindLaw Headlines - Tue, 01/08/2019 - 14:48
Third time's a charm, and perhaps this time, the sentencing will be more severe. Whalesca Castillo has been arrested for manslaughter in the death of Lesbia Ayala, a resident of Philadelphia who had traveled to the Bronx to have Castillo perform a "butt lift" without a medical license. Castillo......

New Divorce Laws in 2019

FindLaw Headlines - Tue, 01/08/2019 - 13:27
Generally speaking, most people don't check the tax code before deciding to get a divorce. But 2018 might've been a little different. The new tax bill made significant changes to how alimony is taxed, which had many people who might've been considering a divorce trying to rush the process before......

How Much Does Real Estate Arbitration Cost?

FindLaw Headlines - Tue, 01/08/2019 - 12:44
As the saying goes, good fences make good neighbors. But what happens when you need a little more? Some real estate disputes require third party intermediaries to reach resolution. This can transpire through a simple mediator, or through a more adversarial approach, such as arbitration or litigation. But what is......

New California Transparency Law Reveals Police Officer Misconduct

FindLaw Headlines - Mon, 01/07/2019 - 19:22
There are some who claim that police misconduct, if it does happen, is a rare occurrence, and even so, a few bad apples shouldn't spoil the whole bunch. There are others who claim such misconduct is rampant, and dirty cops outnumber the good ones. The problem for both sides of......

Cyntoia Brown Given Clemency by Tenn. Governor

FindLaw Headlines - Mon, 01/07/2019 - 19:18
Cyntoia Brown's story has a bittersweet ending, but that's better than the alternative. Come August, she will be a free woman, notwithstanding ten years on parole following her release. When Brown was 16 years old, she was convicted in a Tennessee court room of murdering a man who bought......

Court Tosses Suit Over Microplastics in Nestle Water

FindLaw Headlines - Mon, 01/07/2019 - 19:12
Cindy Baker filed a federal lawsuit in Los Angeles, alleging that there is a high amount of microplastics in Nestle's Pure Life bottled water, in violation of state and federal laws. The lawsuit was seeking an injunction barring Nestle from selling and advertising Pure Life water.The judge didn't disagree......

What to Expect in Johnny Depp's Defamation Lawsuit Against Tabloid

FindLaw Headlines - Mon, 01/07/2019 - 18:46
In an interesting plot twist, Johnny Depp's defamation suit against The Sun, a British tabloid, could lead to the dissemination of some pretty dicey, and confidential, information about the former marriage between Depp and Amber Heard. A 471 page deposition transcript previously unreleased is now out in the open,......