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Santa Monica Personal Injury Law Blog

Napa Quake Sends TV Flying, Causes Fatal Brain Injury


As Rong-Gong Lin II reports for the Los Angeles Times, California's August 2014 earthquake in Napa - which registered 6.0 on the Richter scale - has claimed its first death. A woman was struck in the head by her TV, which came flying at her during the quake, according to the 65-year-old woman's daughter. (See: "Napa earthquake death: 2 weeks later, quake claims first victim.")

The woman, Laurie Thompson, died one week ago Friday from an intracranial hemorrhage.

The New Tiers of Children's Surgical Care


Laura Landro with the Wall Street Journal reports that the American College of Surgeons has created a three-tier classification system that should help hospitals and parents make better decisions when it comes to children's healthcare in acute cases ("Programs Aim to Standardize Surgical Care for Children").

Take a look at the image below, provided by the Wall Street Journal, which depicts the three levels of care.

Fresno Heart Surgeon Sued for Malpractice, Again


Dr. Pervaiz Chaudhry and Community Regional Medical Center have been sued by the family of a man, Gregory Riddle, who died shortly after Dr. Chaudhry operated on him. As Rick Montanez reported for KFSN News, the family hadn't known the Medical Board of California was investigating the case until the Board called at home.

This lawsuit makes it Chaudhry's fourth.

JFK Memorial Hospital and Palo Verde Hospitals Sued in Flesh Eating Bacteria Case

medical malpractice

Two California hospitals were recently sued by the family of a patient who died of necrotizing fasciitis, otherwise known as flesh-eating bacteria.

This case involves 45-year-old Cosme Camargo Jr., who was brought to the Palo Verde emergency room complaining of pain and swelling in his left arm. Surgeons at the hospital noted a blood flow blockage and operated on the arm to restore circulation.

The next day, the surgeons noted that Camargo's white blood cell count was high and rising. He was ultimately diagnosed with necrotizing fasciitis (flesh-eating bacteria) which can only be prevented by cutting off the impacted tissues.

Saddle Ranch Chop House Sued by Injured Customer

California Restaurant

The Saddle Ranch Chop House in Universal City was recently sued by a customer who claims to have been injured when the chair he was sitting on collapsed.

Saddle Ranch is a popular chain restaurant located on CityWalk at Universal Studios Hollywood.

According to court documents, Deon Craig was injured on October 10 or 11th, 2010 and filed suit on May 25, 2012. The lawsuit was served to Russ Cashdan, an attorney listed as Saddle Ranch's agent for service of process. Saddle Ranch failed to respond to the lawsuit and an default judgment was issued against the company on August 10, 2012.

Default judgments occur when one part to a lawsuit fails to respond to a complaint. Defaults judgments are not common for large corporate entities, which is why it is important for an attorney to ensure that all procedural requirements for a default judgment are met.

Woodland Hills Attorney Disbarred For Legal Malpractice

Legal Malpractice Lawsuit California

A Woodland Hills lawyer was recently disbarred from legal malpractice due to ethical violations.

Attorney Richard Thomas Ferko was suspended from practice on August 6, 2014, according to an opinion from the Review Department of the State Bar Court of California.

Disciplinary hearing judges found that Ferko committed at least five ethnical violations in a single case including the "negligent misappropriation of over $50,000 in settlement funds."

Ferko has been a practicing attorney in California since June 1978. He represented many clients in criminal and civil matters, including Ricardo Olmedo. According to court documents, Mr. Olmedo ran up $45,000 in legal fees which he could not pay.

There's Hope: Our Favorite Spinal Cord Injury Resources

ski accident

A Recent College Graduate

In 2004, Andrew Skinner was in love. He had just graduated from college and was celebrating Thanksgiving at a Lake Arrowhead cabin with his future wife, Kirsten.

A fresh blanket of snow covered the ground, so the entire family was outside sledding, snowboarding and making snowmen.

Andrew fell while snowboarding and broke three cervical vertebrae in his neck in addition to suffering a spinal cord injury. He was paralyzed from the neck down.

With the support of his family, Andrew made it through many surgeries and years of rehabilitation. He has gone from being a completely immobile quadriplegic to being able to stand and walk with a walker. Andrew eventually married Kirsten and became a father.

Garfield Medical Center Sued After Death of a Patient

IV Drip Medical Malpractice

A Los Angeles County Medical Center was recently sued for wrongful death by the daughter of a patient who died after surgery.

The case involved a patient named Hung Sun Tam, who was in a car accident in which he injured his stomach and shoulder. Mr. Tam was rushed to Garfield Medical Center where he was diagnosed with peritonitis, hypotension and stomach fluid.

CA Supreme Court: Alzheimer's Patients Cannot Be Sued By Caregivers

Alzheimers Disease Nursing Home

The California Supreme Court recently ruled that Alzheimer's patients cannot be sued for injuring their in-home caregivers.

The ruling was published yesterday and follows a long-established rule that Alzheimer's patients are not liable for injuring professionals who care for them.

California's Supreme Court said that its ruling was in line with "strong public policy" against institutionalizing disabled individuals. The reasoning is that many more Alzheimer's patients would be institutionalized if in-home caregivers were allowed to file personal injury lawsuits (whereas nursing home employees are not.)

California Wrongful Death Claims: The Basics

funeral after a wrongful death

A wrongful death claim is a type of lawsuit filed by the heirs of a person killed by the negligence or intentional act of another.

Wrongful death claims can arise out of a variety of situations including traffic accidents, harmful products, workplace injuries, and intentional injuries such as shootings.

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