This blog has been discussing the various elements of a negligence claim in Connecticut as they apply to premises liability cases over the past couple months. To review, to recover in negligence cases, a plaintiff generally must show that the defendant had a duty to the plaintiff, that the duty was breached, that there was an injury and that the breach was both the cause-in-fact and proximate cause of the injury. In this installment we will touch on the next, and probably most complex element of such cases: proximate cause.
While some drivers in Bridgeport play fast and loose with speed limits, these laws do exist for a reason. There is abundant evidence that shows that traffic fatalities increase with the speeds of vehicles involved in accidents. While going slightly over the limit may not seem like a big deal, serious speeding violations can have devastating consequences.
A few weeks ago, we discussed the concept of "informed consent" with regards to medical malpractice cases in Connecticut. Basically, medical professionals have a duty to ensure that patients understand the risks and benefits of a certain course of medical treatment, that they are aware of feasible alternatives and that they consent to going forward with the treatment. But what does this mean, in practice, to a person who has been injured and is attempting to recover for his or her medical expenses and other losses due to a lack of informed consent? One of the main important concepts in consent-based medical malpractice cases is "materiality." When a patient is informed about a medical treatment or procedure, he or she must be given all information regarding the material risks of the treatment. In this context, "material" information is that information which a reasonably prudent person would take into account when deciding whether to submit to the treatment. Note that this is an objective, rather than subjective standard. This means that materiality is not based upon what this particular patient may have thought, but what a hypothetical reasonable person would have found important. The second important idea in malpractice cases based upon lack of informed consent is that of "proximate cause." Under Connecticut law, this means that a person injured by a medical treatment must show that if disclosure of material risks had been made, a reasonable person would not have consented to the treatment. Again, the state of mind of the particular patient involved is not the standard, but rather whether a hypothetical reasonable patient would have found the risk significant enough to mot submit to the treatment.
Once again, drivers in Connecticut rank among the most dangerous in the country. A study by NerdWallet shows that New Haven is the 8th most dangerous city in the U.S. for driving and owning a car.
This space has previously discussed what signs there may be that a loved one who is in a nursing home or assisted care facility is being abused or neglected. We have also touched on the fact that bedsores, which often are caused by failure of a patient to move, can become serious health problems. One possible cause of such effects is the use of physical or chemical restraints by a nursing facility.
Several weeks ago we began taking a look at the elements of negligence that might be involved in a premises liability lawsuit in Connecticut. Readers may remember that we briefly covered the concepts of duty and breach, and how they were related to the various statuses a visitor on property may have, such as invitee or trespasser. This week we will look at an element that is independent of the status of the visitor: "cause-in-fact."
Previous posts here have discussed various aspects of car accidents, including what Connecticut requires of someone who's been involved in one, as well as the frequency of such accidents on some of the roads in the state. Last fall, we touched on the concept of negligence, and gave some examples of what might be negligent behavior behind the wheel. Today we'll take a closer look at the term and what it actually entails.
We've recently discussed various issues that can be relevant in bringing medical malpractice cases in Connecticut. These include some of the procedural requirements, as well as how such cases differ from other negligence cases, and on what factors a court may rely to determine whether a case merits being judged according to those differences. We've touched on the fact that medical professionals have a standard of care that they must meet when treating patients. This week, we'll take a look at a related, but different, duty the law imposes on medical professionals: that of informed consent.
Slip-and-fall and trip-and-fall accidents in stores are all too common. And while these cases often appear straightforward, they rarely are. The store and its insurance carrier will likely fight to deny or undervalue the injury claim.
About a month ago we discussed the basic elements required for a claim in Connecticut to be considered medical malpractice rather than a traditional negligence or other tort claim. You may remember that we identified three prongs that arise from the state's case law that, if present, require a suit to be handled under the Connecticut medical malpractice law. These are: that the defendant is sued in his or her capacity as a medical professional, that the negligence is of a medical nature and is part of the doctor-patient relationship and that the harm alleged involved medical judgment and was substantially related to medical treatment or diagnosis.