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Norwalk Law Blog

Swatting is not an innocent prank

Anonymous pranks have been around as long as people have had telephones in their homes. With the widespread use of computers and social media, pranks have become more sophisticated and difficult for law enforcement to track and control. Connecticut residents should understand that some phone and internet pranks are no joke. They can, in fact, result in serious criminal charges.

According to the Verge, swatting is a prank that involves callers or online users falsely reporting a crime to law enforcement. This usually results in armed officers or SWAT teams arriving at an innocent person’s residence. In 2015, a Connecticut man was sentenced to a year in prison for participating in numerous swatting hoaxes, including a bomb threat.

What should I know about splitting marital debt?

Debt can be a big concern for divorcing couples in Connecticut. The Nutmeg State is an equitable distribution state, which means a judge will divide up marital property based on the contribution of each spouse toward the marriage. You can expect a state judge to apply the same standard to the amount of marital debt that a couple has accumulated during a marriage.

According to Clearpoint, the debt of a couple needs to be designated as marital or separate debt. Separate debt will belong to the spouse who owns it and will not be spread to the other spouse. It is when spouses comingle expenses that marital debt is designated. For instance, when both spouses co-sign a loan for a house, a car or a boat, the debt is considered to be a marital debt. When spouses contribute money towards an expense, it is considered marital debt as well.

3 divorce-related issues you should think about

Divorce is never a purposeful end. People do not wed because they want to eventually split. It is a difficult and stressful process that can cause even the steadiest person to falter.

In Connecticut, the laws for divorce can seem overwhelming, and getting a handle on how things may occur can help you keep your feet firmly planted. These three issues remain some of the most common in the proceedings. Understanding them may help you in your own split.

Are brain injuries linked to increased dementia risks?

Traumatic brain injuries are known to cause any number of health problems for people in Connecticut. In recent years, public discussion has explored the premise that suffering blows to the head might boost the chances of developing dementia. The Alzheimer's Association describes results from a number of studies on traumatic brain injuries that suggest there are possible links to developing Alzheimer’s or other kinds of dementia.

One important study showed that older persons possessed a 2.3 times greater chance of developing Alzheimer’s if they had a past history of moderate traumatic brain injuries. The chances were even greater for people who suffered severe traumatic brain injuries, with 4.5 times the risk. While other studies have supported this finding, there have been some studies that have not found such links, so universal consensus does not exist as yet.

Advocating for your health and safety with confidence

Visiting the doctor is probably not something that you would think you should spend time preparing for. While you may have a brief list of questions to discuss, you may be comfortable leaving most of your health needs in the hands of your health care provider. At HHS Lawyers, we are committed to helping educate people in Connecticut about the importance of protecting their safety and well-being when they are seeking medical treatment. 

While your doctor has spent considerable time receiving the education that has prepared him or her to treat people, you should also remember that they are just as prone to human error as any other professional. If your doctor has received misinformation, is negligent in any way or is fatigued from working long hours, the chances that you will be the victim of a medical error could be exponentially higher. As such, it is critical that you advocate for your health and safety by being an active participant in your medical treatment and care. 

Negligent entrustment explained

Many in Norwalk may only view the collective cost of car accidents in terms of loss of life. This point of view is understandable, given that the only thing that cannot be fully compensated for following such an accident is the loss of a loved one. Yet this perspective also does not take into account the massive financial toll that car accidents can exact. Few likely realize that (according to information shared by Safer America) car accidents in America have a net financial impact of over $242 billion annually. 

Such expenses are often frustrating for accident victims to have to deal with. Their frustrations are likely compounded if they find out that those who hit them had a history of reckless or poor driving. If that discovery also reveals that the vehicles they were driving were not their own, but rather entrusted to them by others, victims may rightly question if those who granted said drivers access to vehicles should also share in their liability. 

Is DNA reliable evidence?

For decades, the news media and Hollywood would have you believe that DNA evidence is some sort of miracle. When it first became a legally admissible type of evidence, there was a lot of buzz over it. People have been cleared of crimes and released from prison after serving decades for crimes they did not commit all because of DNA evidence. So, it sounds wonderful. It seems like it can solve any crime. However, that is not entirely true.

According to JSTOR Daily, DNA is rather complex. There is no denying that it has done amazing things, but it is not a miracle answer to finding out who committed a crime. There are several issues with this type of evidence that could lead to it convicting the wrong person.

Serious mistakes with child safety

One of your primary desires as parents is to keep your children safe. As the world grows ever more stressful, pressure comes from all directions. It is hard to think about every object that may prove harmful to your child when the family is rushing to and from work, day care, grocery shopping or school activities.

As children age, they become aware of danger and learn basic safety rules. Younger children, however, are completely dependent on you to protect them. It may sound impossible, but it can only take seconds for your child to enter a danger zone. Small children move very quickly and erratically; they can run to the wrong place in the brief time it takes you to locate your cellphone on the kitchen counter and answer it.

Understanding the consequences of large truck collisions

Motor vehicle collisions of any kind can be devastating, but those involving large trucks can be especially tragic. These accidents frequently claim lives due to the size of large trucks, and even when victims do not pass away they frequently sustain serious injuries that permanently disrupt their lives. Whether a large truck driver has difficulty slowing down due to the size of their vehicle or they slam into another vehicle at a high rate of speed, these accidents often bring significant consequences in Connecticut and across the U.S. As a result, truck drivers and all other drivers should do what they can to avoid a crash.

Sometimes, large truck wrecks involve drivers recklessly operating a small passenger vehicle, such as someone who does not switch lanes properly. Many other wrecks involve negligent truck drivers, whether a trucker is under the influence, suffering from driver fatigue or distracted by their phone. Regardless of why a large truck accident happens, those involved may face a long road ahead. Injuries not only bring physical pain, but they can also lead to financial hardship because of hospital costs and taking time off of work to recover. Some people are never able to work again and they miss out on many aspects of life they used to enjoy.

What are the child safety seat requirements?

Protecting your children is something you do every day as a parent. It should not be something you slack on when it comes to riding in a vehicle. Studies have shown repeatedly that child safety seats save lives. Anytime you put your child in a car, he or she must be in the correct child safety seat based on his or her age and weight. Connecticut law is very specific about these guidelines, and it is your responsibility as a parent to know and understand them.

There are three types of child safety seats. These include front facing, rear facing and booster seats. According to Safe Kids Connecticut, a rear-facing seat is the first type you will use. Newborns and children up to the age of two who weigh 30 pounds or less should ride in a rear-facing seat. Do note that many seats can be rear or front facing, so make sure that you are positioning the seat correctly in your vehicle based on age and weight.

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