Being in a car accident is no fun. Even if the individual involved feels he or she came out OK, there's the after effects of the adrenaline that no doubt flooded the person's bloodstream, not to mention the possible need to repair or replace the vehicle. Then, the realization may hit that it also means having to deal with an insurance company and possibly even the court system. It may sometimes seem like it'd be better, assuming the vehicle is still operational, to drive off and try to forget it happened. There are however, several reasons that make this course of action a bad idea in most cases.
As we mentioned a couple weeks ago, travel on Connecticut's roadways tends to increase around the winter holidays. The weeks between Christmas and New Year's Day generally find heavy traffic on the highways that transect the state, as well as in urban areas like Bridgeport. Unfortunately, this, coupled with the penchant for residents to be going to and from parties where alcohol is served during this time period, as well as the often inclement winter weather the state experiences, can contribute to a rise in serious accidents. The results of these crashes can be serious, with injuries and death as potential consequences.
Everyone knows the population of the United States is aging. Entire news cycles are spent regaling us with statistics and projections of Connecticut's and the remainder of the country's recent penchant for 'greying.' Because of this, in both political and legal circles, the issues that affect older people are becoming more and more visible and important. One of these is the abuse and neglect of people living in long-term care facilities or nursing homes.
As a society, we can often accomplish more collectively than we can individually. Utilizing a wide range of organizational tools, modern civilizations create entities responsible for helping maintain the health, comfort and well-being of their citizens, from police forces to trash collection to regulatory agencies that ensure air and water quality. Connecticut, like most states, has state departments that are tasked with regulating long-term care facilities and nursing homes. One of the facets of this is inspecting institutions, surveying patients, and investigating reports of abuse.
It has been a much-remarked-on fact recently that the population of the United States is growing older. Due to the so-called 'baby boom' generation reaching retirement age, the age-based demographic pyramid is becoming top-heavy. As a result, social issues that affect the older population are becoming more prevalent in the national consciousness. One of these is the looming specter of nursing home abuse.
The blog has previously discussed various aspects of premises liability law in the state of Connecticut. We've touched on the use of the negligence tort in such cases, and the various elements that generally go into proving negligence, including duty, causation, and damages. We've also mentioned the various categories into which people present on someone else's property may fall, such as invitee, licensee and trespasser. But how far does, say, a business owner's duty extend, in physical or geographic terms?
Medical practices these days tend to be pretty specialized. While a Connecticut resident may have a general practitioner for basic check-ups and small problems like colds, when there is something more serious happening, that person is likely to be referred to someone for that specific problem. Further, when dealing with internal medicine, there may be multiple doctors and other health care workers involved in patient care, as a radiologist may need to read scans or x-rays, while a specialist determines the best course of action, and a surgeon does any necessary procedures, usually accompanied by an anesthesiologist.
Humans have been seeking a cure for cancer for as long as we have been aware the disease existed. Such a cure may have been easier to come by if there weren't so many different types of it and ways for cancer to attack. While we are not there yet, we have come a long way in cancer diagnosis and treatment, and, for many types, cancer does not have to be a death sentence. However, in almost all cases, treatment depends upon catching the disease in an early stage, before it has spread to multiple, or more vulnerable organs.
We've previously discussed many aspects of premises liability law in the state of Connecticut. Readers may remember that, in many cases, plaintiffs will attempt to recover under a negligence theory when they are injured on someone else's property. Negligence requires a legal duty to the injured person, and we've touched on the various statuses people in Connecticut can have when on another's land, namely, trespasser, licensee, and invitee. While the exact duties a landowner or possessor has to each of these types of individuals will vary, one component of a premises liability case usually remains the same: notice.
There are many aspects to premises liability law in Connecticut. As this blog has discussed, various negligent behavior by owners of property that cause injury to people on that premises may make the landowner financially responsible for the damage that has been done. What kind of duty a land owner has is often dictated by the kind of status the injured party had, either as an invitee, licensee or trespasser. In these types of cases whether the owner of the premises breached his or her duty is an important part of the case.