Distracted driving is no “accident”

Fascinating NYT article on how we talk about distracted driving.  Words have meaning.  The word “accident” implies no one is responsible.  “Accidents happen,” as the saying goes.  Most car crashes are not accidents.  They are caused by driver action, inaction, or distraction. Let’s call a spade a spade.  #crashnotaccident

Female driver with mobile phone. Focus on hand holding phone

She did not pick up the phone and decide to text by accident.

The confusion that is car seats

Forward-facing or rear-facing?  Car seat or booster seat?  Is it age 8 or 80 lbs. when you can take your child out of a car seat?  Or is it age 8 and 80 lbs.?  Well-meaning parents can often be confused by the various, and ever-changing car seat standards.

Adorable Baby Yawning

What does this mean to you:

For an up to date summary of Ohio law regarding car seat, check out this article –  Ohio’s New Car Seat Standards – I recently wrote for the Ohio State Bar Association’s Ohio Lawyer Magazine.

I didn’t do it

Sometimes the law holds people accountable even when they didn’t do anything wrong.  How can that be?

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Think about it in terms of an employer and his employee.  When an employee is on the job and causes harm, the employer is legally responsible for that harm, even though the employer did not cause the harm.  This is called vicarious liability.

What does this mean to you:

Responsibility and fault are not always synonymous.  Say that five times fast.

Now I know more

Everybody’s heard about the lawsuit that seems to crazy to be true – whether it the McDonald’s coffee case or some other.  You may have seen emails being forwarded around highlighting some cases, claiming to be real life examples of our legal system out of control.

Psst! I know more than you do.

Now there is a website devoted to focusing a spotlight on the other end of the spectrum – corporate misdeeds in the name of profit and at the expense of people and their lives.  Check out the Now I Know More site at nowiknowmore.com.

What does it mean to you:

Don’t accept what you read about our legal system at first blush.  Lots of powerful and well-funded special interests devote a lot of resources to convincing the American public that our civil justice system is broken. Consider the source and what they have to gain by spreading such misinformation.