When it comes to caring for those who fought to protect our freedoms, one would think it’s safe to assume our nation’s veterans are receiving the highest quality of care possible. Unfortunately, that might not be the case in many facilities across the country, according to a report published last July by The Boston Globe and USA Today. Veterans who risked their lives for their country shouldn’t have to risk their lives in VA nursing homes.

In July 2018, The Boston Globe and USA Today published data on VA nursing home facilities obtained through internal documents. The information measured the quality of care in 133 VA nursing home facilities that serve more than 46,000 veterans. The documents revealed that VA nursing homes have more residents suffering from serious pain and bedsores compared to private facilities.

The glimpse into the state of care of 46,000 veterans in 133 facilities showed high numbers of veterans suffering from potential neglect or medication mismanagement. In addition, the data showed that more than 100 VA nursing homes scored worse than private nursing homes on the majority of key quality indicators. This includes the rates of infection and decline in the quality of life.

In initial stories, both news outlets reported that 60 VA nursing homes received one out of five stars last year—the agency’s lowest quality ranking.

The study found that four VA nursing home facilities in Massachusetts, Ohio, Alabama, and Oregon gave antipsychotic drugs to its patients—nearly twice as many as in the private sector. The practice of administering antipsychotic drugs is linked to early death in elderly patients with dementia. Additionally, federal law has long banned the use of chemical restraints.

“They should be assessing individuals and doing what they can to manage it,” said Robyn Grant, director of public policy and advocacy at the National Consumer Voice for Quality Long-Term Care. “And if it’s not working, they should be trying different things.”

The VA has long argued that its residents are much sicker than those in private care facilities. Additionally, the agency has kept these files since 2011. The 2011 report found that 80 percent of the agency’s nursing homes had issues with medication management.

Click here to find specific information on your loved one’s VA nursing home.

The increased risk of elder abuse in veterans

Nursing home abuse and neglect leads to serious physical injuries, depression and even death. Although millions of seniors from all walks of life are subjected to nursing home abuse, the Boston Globe and USA Today reports show that a number of factors increase the risks of abuse and mistreatment for military veterans in VA nursing homes.

For starters, veterans aged 65 and older have an increased prevalence of physical disabilities. The severity of their disabilities put them at an increased risk for elderly abuse. Typically, their physical limitations make them defenseless against both physical and emotional attacks. There are approximately four million veterans had a “service-connected disability” in 2016. Of those veterans, 1.3 million had a disability rating of 70 percent or higher, based on the VA’s Disability Rating System.

Veterans also have an increased risk of mental health disorders. The U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs conducted a study in 2011 revealing that approximately one in three veterans of any age has at least one diagnosable mental health disorder. Such disorders include depression, substance abuse, and post-traumatic stress disorder.

After serving their country, veterans are commonly left without sufficient support systems such as friends and family networks, and mental and physical health care services. Although frequent underreporting makes it difficult to pinpoint an exact number of elder abuse cases, an increasingly aging veteran population is more likely to have an increased dependency on nursing homes and caregivers.

Forms of veteran elderly abuse and neglect

Elderly mistreatment is both widespread and underreported. Veterans left without family or with few visitors depend on nursing home caregivers to meet their most basic needs, as well as treat them with dignity. When these needs go unmet, veteran nursing home residents can endure some of the most traumatic forms of abuse and neglect. Veteran elderly abuse occurs in the following ways:

Neglect: Although nursing home neglect is similar to nursing home abuse in some ways, however, they are not the same. Nursing home neglect is defined as a breach of duty or form of substandard care that results in harm to the resident and has a foreseeable outcome of the nursing home’s negligent actions. This includes serious physical or mental harm that results from the failure of caregivers to provide the needed level of care to the nursing home resident. Types of nursing home neglect involve:

Emotional or social neglect– The resident is often left alone or repeatedly ignored.

Personal hygiene neglect– The resident does not receive adequate help with hygiene practices such as bathing, brushing their teeth, change of clothes, clean linens or other hygiene practices.

Basic needs neglect– Reasonable food, water are not provided as well as a safe and clean environment.

Medical neglect– The nursing home caregivers fail to provide adequate attention, prevention or medication for infections, bedsores, diabetes, cognitive diseases or any other illness that requires medication.

Depending on the type of neglect, there may not be any physical signs—making neglect difficult to detect. Some indicators that nursing home neglect may be occurring are:

  • Bedsores
  • Frequent falls
  • Sudden weight loss/malnutrition
  • Dehydration
  • Changes in appearance
  • Withdrawn behavior with staff

Physical abuse: Punching, shoving, scratching, suffocating, slapping, kicking and misuse of both physical and chemical restraint are only a few forms of elderly physical abuse. Physical abuse is one of the most common types of abuse seen in nursing homes and one of the easiest to detect. Warning signs that may suggest a resident is experiencing physical abuse include:

  • Medical staff does not leave the resident alone with family
  • Unexplained, recurring injuries
  • Physical signs of restraint such as bruises and abrasions
  • Resident’s sudden change in behavior especially when certain caregivers are around

Emotional and psychological abuse: Acts of verbal assault such as threats, humiliation, yelling at and ridicule that causes elderly residents to feel extreme sadness, fear and anxiety. This type of abuse can be more difficult to observe than physical abuse. However emotional and psychological abuse can leave lasting effects on the elderly and can even contribute to the decline of physical health. It is important to understand that psychological abuse can also be inflicted in a nonverbal manner. Some examples include ignoring the resident by giving them the silent treatment and isolating them from other residents and activities. Indicators of emotional and physical abuse include the following:

  • Depression
  • Withdrawal from others
  • Agitation
  • Excessive fear or nervousness
  • Sudden change in personality
  • Unusual behavior such as rocking or sucking
  • Loss of appetite

The Carlson Law Firm Can Help

Putting your loved one in a nursing home care facility can be a difficult decision to make. You are trusting someone with your loved one’s life. When that trust is broken, it can leave you questioning if you made the right decision. But it is never your fault. You can hold the responsible parties accountable for your loved one’s nursing home abuse and neglect. If you want real accountability, contact our expert nursing home abuse and neglect attorneys today. The Carlson Law Firm is a veteran-owned and operated law firm. We take the living condition of our veterans seriously. We have more than 40 years of experience protecting the rights of those who have suffered from nursing home negligence. In addition to our success, our firm has the leading nursing home abuse and neglect attorneys in the country.

If you believe your loved one is suffering or has suffered from nursing home abuse and neglect, contact our firm today. Our team of nursing home abuse experts can help you, and your loved ones get the justice you deserve.

Hundreds of U.S. veterans are suing Minnesota-based 3M over allegedly defective earplugs issued to soldiers for a little over a decade—despite knowing of the defects. These military earplug lawsuits allege that the company’s failure to disclose earplug design defects caused thousands to suffer from hearing injuries.

Between 2003 and 2015, 3M supplied the U.S. military with dual-ended Combat Arms Earplugs, Version 2. The earplugs had a defective design that made them too short for proper insertion and failed to seal. Because of this, dangerously loud sounds were able to slip through leading to hearing loss and tinnitus.

The lawsuits allege that the company was aware of this design flaw. In fact, according to a Whistleblower lawsuit filed in 2016, the company knew about the defects as early as 2000. Additionally, the lawsuit alleges that rather than correcting the problem, the company falsified certification stating that its testing complied with military standards.

Further, 3M failed to disclose these defects to the proper officials. The company was the exclusive manufacturer of earplugs for deployed soldiers who served in the following wars:

  • War of Afghanistan
  • Iraq War
  • War in North-West Pakistan
  • War in Somalia
  • American-led intervention in Libya
  • Operation Ocean Shield in the Indian Ocean
  • American- led interventions in Iraq (2014-2017)
  • American-led intervention in Syria (2014-present)

What injuries have affected soldiers?

Veterans deployed to a warzone between 2003-2016 suffered hearing-related injuries as a result of 3Ms fraudulent practices. Military earplug lawsuits against 3M allege that the defective earplugs are responsible for the following hearing injuries:

Both of these conditions can limit a person’s quality of life and ability to fulfill job duties. For example, hearing loss may restrict a person’s ability to communicate while those with severe tinnitus can suffer from sleep problems and loss of focus and concentration.

The Department of Justice Investigation

The Department of Justice launched an investigation and found that the dual-ended Combat Arms earplugs supplied by 3M were too short for proper insertion into the ears. The defect led to subtle improper fits that users may not have noticed. This rendered the earplugs ineffective in performing the desired level of noise cancellation.

The DOJ cited enforcement of the False Claims Act to protect U.S. tax dollars from “waste, fraud, and abuse.” In July 2018, 3M agreed to pay $9.1 million to resolve allegations that it knowingly sold earplugs to the Defense Logistics Agency without disclosing defects.

3M’s Response to the Military Earplug Lawsuits

3M continues to deny responsibility in the injuries suffered by thousands of soldiers. In fact, in mid-January, the company said in a statement, “Safety is a key component of what we do for the United States Military and 3M denies that Combat Arms Earplugs caused injuries.”

The company also disagrees with the original lawsuit’s claims and chose to settle for a variety of reasons, including to avoid legal fees.

The Carlson Law Firm Can Help

Hearing injuries resulting from 3M’s negligence were largely preventable. Rather than do right by our country’s bravest, the company put its bottom line first. While your hearing may never return, a military earplug lawsuit can help you recover lost wages, medical expenses and other damages.

If you or a vet you know is suffering the effects of hearing loss or tinnitus after using 3M dual-ended Combat Arms earplugs, contact The Carlson Law Firm to schedule a free consultation with a defective 3M earplug lawsuit attorney. We are a veteran-owned and operated firm committed to ensuring our fellow veterans receive justice. For many, there is no treatment available to reverse the effects of hearing loss and tinnitus, but we can help.

Contact us now to discuss your legal options with our skilled legal team.

A Texas Jury awarded a Dallas woman $37.6 million after finding that a Honda minivan’s poorly designed seatbelt was the cause of her paralysis.

According to court documents, on Nov. 15, 2015, Sarah Milburn sat in the third-row middle seat of a Honda Odyssey operated by an Uber driver when a pickup truck struck the minivan. Sarah sustained cervical injuries resulting in quadriplegia.

The Dallas jury announced a verdict in favor of Milburn on Wednesday who alleged that the seatbelt in the minivan was defective. The seatbelt’s two-part system requires the passenger to connect a shoulder strap on the van’s ceiling to the seat and then pull the belt across her hips and buckle it. The lawsuit alleged that because of the defective seatbelt, Milburn was not safely restrained when the minivan was hit, throwing her head forward into the seat in front of her, causing her injuries.

Although the 2011 Honda Odyssey seat belt system complied with government regulations, they were not enough to protect the public from unreasonable risks according to the jury. The auto company’s U.S. subsidiary, American Honda Co was found negligent in designing the seatbelt system.

The jury assigned Honda 63% responsibility for Milburn’s injuries. The jury also found the Uber driver was 32% responsible for speeding and running a red light at the moment the crash occurred, and Milburn was 5% responsible.

Milburn was awarded $37.6 million in damages, including $20 million in future medical expenses, $8 million for past and future mental anguish and $3 million for past and future physical pain.

Studies conducted for the lawsuit revealed that 50 out of 53 people had put on their seatbelt the same way Milburn did the day of the collision.

“What the jury needs to understand is that it’s not enough to just equip a car with seat belts. The carmaker also has to make sure people can and will use them safely,” Milburn’s attorney said.

Neither the pickup driver nor the Uber driver sustained serious injuries in the crash.

Defective Auto Parts Pose Serious Harm

An auto part has a faulty design if it fails to perform as an ordinary consumer would expect when used in an intended or foreseeable manner.

Defective auto parts can range from brakes to seatbelts, but they all have one thing in common: negligence by a manufacturer. If designed poorly or installed incorrectly, defective auto parts can cause catastrophic injuries and even death to passengers. If such defects caused you or a loved one harm, you may have a cause of action against the manufacturer and may be eligible for compensation.

Product liability claims can be based on the following, but are not limited to:

Seat belt failures- Buckling up is the top safety measure to take when you are an occupant in a vehicle. When seat belts fail, the results are often catastrophic and many times deadly. Seat belts can malfunction in a variety of ways including unlatching, detaching, tearing and improper shoulder harness fit among others.

Defective airbags/ airbag malfunction- Frequent airbag recalls have made the majority of us are aware of the seriousness of defective airbags. A defective airbag may fail to deploy during a collision or deploys when it is not supposed to causing severe injuries such as spinal injuries, facial injuries and brain injuries to name a few.

Tire defects- Defective tires may “blow out” causing tread separation that can lead to dangerous rollovers, spinouts, and other single vehicle collisions. A common reason for tread separation is poor tread design.

Brake failure- Braking systems are an important part of vehicle safety. Brakes are what allow us to reduce speeds and stop us from slamming into other cars and objects. Brake systems involve discs, rotors, calipers and hydraulic lines that must work together properly in order to stop the vehicle safely. If a vehicle has a brake defect, the vehicle’s passengers and anyone nearby is in danger.

Seat back failures Seat backs serve a greater purpose than comfort. If the back of a bucket seat collapses in a collision, the occupant is exposed to serious injury because there will be an interference with the restraint system. The person sitting on the defective seat is not the only one who may suffer injuries if seat back failure were to occur. A front-row seat back collapse can seriously injure the rear seat passenger during a rear-impact collision.

Most states make it possible to hold a manufacturer strictly liable for a defective auto part. This means that you will not have to show that the manufacturer’s action fell below a particular standard of care. With the help of an experienced Defective Auto Products lawyer, you will need to prove that defective auto part was unreasonably dangerous and such defect caused you harm.

The Carlson Law Firm can help

No one expects to be harmed by something intended to keep them safe, such as a seat belt. However, auto defects come to light more than expected. If an auto company’s carelessness or unreasonable cost-saving decisions led to your injuries, you have the right to hold that company legally liable for your injuries and financial losses associated with the result of the auto defect.

If you or a loved one suffered injuries due to an auto defect, know that there are resources available to you. Let our Defective Auto Products Injury Attorneys evaluate your claim and help you explore your options for seeking maximum compensation while ensuring you are in the best possible position for long-term relief. Here at The Carlson Law Firm, we have a team who has devoted over 40 years to protecting victims and their families. We will protect you any way we can.

Contact us today for a free, no-obligation consultation. We care, we can help.

The Carlson Law Firm offers mediation services by local family and criminal law attorney, Steve Walden.

Steve has over 20 years’ experience actively litigating military, criminal,  and family law cases. In addition, his qualified mediation skills are invaluable to anyone in need of a fair resolution to a complex legal matter.

He is board certified in family law by the Texas Board of Legal Specialization. Among his many affiliations are the State Bar of Texas, Bell County Bar Association (past president), and the Fort Hood Bar Association. Before his practice with The Carlson Law Firm, he was a commissioned officer in the US Army and U.S. Army Judge Advocate.

Steve offers mediation services in all of his practice areas. With his experience and expertise in family law, he can assist with reaching a peaceful resolution in litigation matters.  Further, he ensures all parties’ thoughts and concerns are heard, even when the parties cannot articulate those thoughts themselves.

Is mediation right for you?

When parties are unwilling or unable to resolve a dispute, one good option is to turn to mediation. Mediation is generally a short-term, structured, task-oriented, and “hands-on” process.

Mediation is usually a voluntary process, although sometimes statutes, rules, or court orders may require participation in mediation. Mediation is common in small claims courts,  family courts, and some criminal court programs.

The mediator has an equal and balanced responsibility to assist each mediating party and cannot favor the interests of any one party. The mediator’s job is to help the disputants evaluate their goals and options and find their own mutually satisfactory solution.

What is mediation and what are its benefits?

Mediation is a process in which an impartial third party facilitates communication and negotiation to help parties in disagreement find an agreeable resolution. A mediator eases the process by helping both parties communicate clearly and effectively, by focusing on positive rather than negative emotions. This process leads to more informed, satisfying, and lasting resolutions. In addition to resolving a dispute, the individuals in conflict have the chance to overcome misunderstandings and misperceptions to help them restore trust and respect.

Mediation provides an opportunity for parties to exert personal control over the outcome of a dispute. During mediation, the parties can make decisions together based on an understanding of their views, the other’s opinions and the situation they face.

“Mediation is an alternative to letting a judge who doesn’t know or understand the complete story between conflicting parties decide their fate,” Carlson Law Firm partner and mediator Steve Walden said. “Instead, the two people who know all of the details of their specific situation can negotiate and come to an agreement that works best for them.”

In addition to walking away with a mutual resolution,  mediation also teaches or strengthens valuable conflict resolution skills that the parties can apply in future disputes.

Furthermore, the process of mediation will often leave less strain in your wallet. For example, an improperly handled divorce process may turn into a drawn-out battle. This doesn’t just affect both parties financially, but can also add to the emotional turmoil and damage of everyone involved, including children. To avoid extended court battles and costly fees, working things out between parties is key.

What does the mediation process look like?

You might be surprised to learn that the mediation process is carried out over a number of steps. Mediation is a multi-stage process designed to get results. Yes, it is less formal than a trial or arbitration, but not as informal as you’d think. Most mediations go as follows:

Stage 1- Mediator’s opening statements. Once all parties are present the mediator makes his or her introductions. The mediator then explains the goals and rules of the mediation and encourages each side to work cooperatively toward an agreement. The opening statement during the introductory remarks will set out the ground rules for the mediation.

Stage 2- Disputants’ opening statements. After the opening statement, the mediator will give each side the opportunity to tell their story uninterrupted. Each party is invited to describe, in his or her own words, what the dispute is about and how he or she has been affected by it, and to present some general ideas about resolving it. While one person is speaking, the other is not allowed to interrupt.

Stage 3- Joint discussion. The mediator will then ask both parties open-ended questions to get to those involved taking directly about what was said in opening statements.

Stage 4- Private caucuses. At this stage, both parties are given the opportunity to meet privately with the mediator to discuss their position and possible resolutions. The mediator may caucus with each side just once, or several times, as needed.

Stage 5- Joint negotiation. After caucuses, the mediator may bring the parties back together to negotiate directly. Methods for developing resolution may include group processes, discussion groups subgroups, developing hypothetical plausible scenarios, or a mediators proposal where the mediator puts a proposal on the table and the parties take turns modifying it.

Stage 6- Closure. If an agreement has been reached, the mediator may put its main provisions in writing as the parties listen. If no agreement was reached, the mediator will review whatever progress has been made and advise everyone of their options, which include meeting again later, going to arbitration, or going to court.

How should I prepare for mediation?

You need to prepare thoughtfully and carefully to come to an agreement that you are satisfied with during your mediation process. As with many aspects of life, your level of preparation is closely tied to your rate of success. Things you can do to prepare for your mediation include the following:

Understand the role of your mediator:

Mediation differs from other resolution processes. It’s important that you understand the role of the mediator, which is not to make a decision about your case or dispute.  Instead, the mediator’s role is to facilitate the negotiations.

Identify all possible solutions in advance:

You usually know the outcome that you wish to achieve prior to mediation, however taking a fixed position can sometimes reduce your chances of resolving the matter at hand, as it restricts your ability to be flexible in finding other possible ways to end your dispute. Before mediation, you should go over all possible resolutions, taking into consideration the anticipated positions of the adverse party. Try to come with an open mind to negotiation.

Arrive well-rested, and relaxed:

The mediation process, while designed to ease the common stresses of other court proceedings, can still be and emotional and stressful event. It’s important to take care of yourself leading up to your scheduled appointment. Make sure you’re rested, comfortable and hydrated. People tend to underestimate how draining negotiations can be, and how likely people are to commit to resolutions they aren’t comfortable with if they are tired, hungry or thirsty. Mediation can also be an emotional experience so try your best to anticipate how you might react to things that are likely to come up during the mediation process. Don’t forget, you are able to ask the mediator for breaks should you become overwhelmed at any stage.

Be ready to make the first offer:

Research shows that the party making the first offer in a negotiation tends to be happier with the final settlement. This is because of what is known as ‘anchoring,’ where the first offer helps define the range of the negotiation to follow.

Scheduling mediation with Steve Walden

When you are going through a stressful life-changing event, you want the support of someone who is compassionate, thorough, fair and neutral. Steve Walden can offer clearheaded alternatives and be your aid in finding common ground.

“As an attorney who has heard hundreds of unique stories and presented those stories to judges and juries, I understand that is there is never a ‘one-size fits all’ resolution,” Steve said. “This experience makes me an effective mediator because I can look at both sides of a story and find all possible alternatives and solutions to help the parties find a mutually beneficial agreement.”

Let Steve Walden facilitate communication and negotiation to help you find a solution to help you heal and move forward without the stressful court battles. He can conduct mediation at a location selected by the parties or at his office in Killeen, Texas located at 100 E Central Texas Expy. The mediation service fee is $100 per hour, per side. Take the first step towards a peaceful resolution and schedule your mediation today.

A 24-year-old Fort Worth man died of a massive stroke after an e-cigarette explosion tore his carotid artery. This is the second known death from a vape pen. In addition, these devices have left four Texans and thousands of others across the nation severely injured and disfigured.

The tragedy occurred on Jan. 27 and William Brown passed away two days later on Jan. 29. Brown’s death certificate says that he died from cerebral infarction and herniation after debris from the exploding vape dissected his left carotid artery.

The explosion happened in a parking lot of a vape shop near the intersection of North Beach St. and Golden Triangle Boulevard in Fort Worth. The manager of Smoke and Vape DC told reporters that he called an ambulance after the explosion.

Brown had gone to the vape shop to ask for help using his vape pen. However, he did not purchase anything because the shop did not sell that brand of vape pen.

The explosion led to cuts on his lip and pieces from the device being lodged in his throat. According to Brown’s grandmother, Alice Brown, doctors knew the pieces of e-cigarette were lodged in his throat but failed to remove it.

How do e-cigarette explosions occur?

“Most e-cigarettes and vape devices are powered by a lithium-ion battery,” said Carlson Law Firm partner, Steve Dummit. “Further, these batteries and devices are manufactured in China with substandard quality controls and can often be counterfeit.”

Phones, hoverboards, cameras and even hybrid cars contain lithium-ion batteries. When these batteries short-circuit, they lead to explosions that cause several types of injuries.

“Often, our clients have suffered serious burn injuries to their face, hands, and legs with some clients also requiring significant dental reconstruction,” Dummitt said.

While these explosions are rare, they are extremely dangerous. In fact, these explosions are so dangerous that it prompted the U.S. Fire Administration to release a report titled, Electronic Cigarette Fires and Explosions in the United States 2009-2016.

There is a persistent myth that e-cigarettes and vape pens are safer than old-fashioned cigarettes. However, in addition to many of the brands containing ingredients that are not meant for inhalation, e-cigarettes and vape pens also run the risk of exploding in your pocket or while taking a puff.

The Carlson Law Firm Can Help

The Carlson Law Firm has extensive knowledge and experience with vaping and e-cigarette explosion cases. Our firm represents clients injured when e-cigarette and vaping device batteries explode spontaneously. Carlson has also represented clients when the vaping device has failed and exploded due to substandard manufacturing.

To successfully prosecute these injuries and the cause of the explosions, the attorney that represents you should have significant experience. If you have been a victim of a vaping or e-cigarette explosion, or know someone that has, please contact The Carlson Law Firm immediately to speak to a legal representative for a free consultation.

Victims and families of the Sutherland Springs church shooting can move forward with a lawsuit against a sporting goods store who sold Sutherland Springs shooter his gun and ammunition. Judge Karen Pozza denied Academy Sports + Outdoors’ request to throw out the lawsuit.

The Sutherland Springs families allege that the chain is liable for the slaughter carried by shooter Devin P. Kelley. Kelley, who resided in Colorado where high-capacity magazines are illegal, was able to purchase one at a Texas Academy location. On Nov. 5, 2017, Kelley killed and injured dozens of people at the First Baptist Church of Sutherland. In their lawsuit, the families are seeking damages for physical and mental anguish, as well as medical expenses.

Judge Pozza’s decision can carry massive implications for gun laws in Texas and across the country. Her decision ultimately means that the victims and families can proceed with a lawsuit and eventually go to a jury trial.

Allowing the lawsuit to proceed could test the limits of state and federal gun laws. In fact, it may be able to answer long-standing and highly debated legal questions. There are two questions at the heart of the case. The first is whether the federal definition of firearms includes the magazine sold with it. The second, is if a state bans the sale of a high-capacity magazine, does the law apply to that state’s residents seeking to purchase firearms outside of the state.

In essence, this lawsuit may set a precedent for whether gun dealers must decline sales of certain items based on their legality in the buyer’s home state. It may also determine whether shooting victims can file civil suits and get monetary damages from dealers under these certain circumstances.

What is Academy arguing in the Sutherland Springs lawsuit?

Academy argues that state and federal laws prevent the chain from bearing any responsibility. Under the federal law known as the Protection of Lawful Commerce in Arms Act (PLCAA), firearms dealers are shielded from being sued if a crime is committed with a weapon they sold. However, the PLCAA has the following exceptions:

  1. In cases of negligence.
  2. If the dealer knowingly broke federal or state laws when the weapon was sold.

Colorado banned the sale of any magazine with more than 15 rounds. Kelley presented a Colorado ID card when he purchased a firearm that came with a 30-round magazine. In addition, he bought a second 30-round magazine from a Texas Academy location.

However, Academy argues that because the items were purchased in Texas that it was within the limits of the law to sell Kelley high-capacity magazines. Academy also contends that “magazine” is not included in the definition of a firearm.

What are the Sutherland Springs families arguing against Academy?

The families say that Academy was grossly negligent in selling Kelley, a Colorado resident, firearms with a high-capacity magazine. Attorneys for the families are arguing that federal law prohibits the sale of firearms to out of state residents. However, there are two exceptions:

  1. The buyer meets the seller in person.
  2. The sale fully complies with the legal conditions of sale in both states.

Attorneys for the families rebutted Academy’s claim that magazines aren’t part of the definition of a firm. For example, guns can’t do their primary function without magazines in the same way a car can’t do its primary function without wheels.

Sutherland Springs victims and families lawsuit against the government

The victims of the Sutherland Springs church massacre are also suing the federal government for what they say is negligence. Despite Kelley’s history of domestic violence, the U.S. Airforce admitted that it failed to report Kelley to the federal criminal database. This essentially allowed Kelley to purchase firearms without raising any red flags.

This case may also signal massive changes to America’s gun laws. It may be the first time that victims can draw a straight line connecting a mass shooting to government negligence.

The Carlson Law Firm Can Help

Mass shootings are an all too common occurrence in the United States. Each year, even after the headlines move on, hundreds of families are left dealing with the aftermath of a mass shooting. The emotional toll that losing a loved one takes on you doesn’t fade as easily as mass shootings fade in collective our memories. Holding someone accountable for the devastating and senseless loss of a loved one will not bring that person back, but it can help you begin rebuilding your life and cement your loved one’s legacy.

We can help you recover damages for hospital expenses, physical therapy, and other medical bills. In addition, we can help those who have lost a loved one recover funeral expenses and therapy bills as a result of the emotional turmoil they are suffering.

Further, a civil mass shooting lawsuit can help you recover through answering the questions you thought you’d never get the answer to. It can also move the national conversation forward on how these acts can be prevented.

Contact our team of dedicated attorneys at The Carlson Law Firm for more information on civil mass shooting lawsuits. Our qualified legal team will fight for justice for you and your loved ones.

We care. We can help.

Harley-Davidson announced a recall for 43,908 Street motorcycles for brake defects that could cause a crash. In addition, the motorcycle giant temporarily stopped shipping the models under recall.

Corrosion of the brake caliper piston bore can lead to brakes dragging. Consequently, if the problem isn’t repaired, the increased drag could affect the bike’s stability and increase the risk of a crash.

Affected models include the Street 750 and Street 500 models manufactured in the United States between May 19, 2015, through Dec. 6, 2019. The recall includes 12,800 bikes sold in the United States. Additionally, the recall affects street bikes built in India during a similar period.

Dealerships will install new brake calipers on both the front and rear brakes. However, it could take months before full shipments of the company’s smallest bikes resume. The company says that it is in need of the parts to begin repairs.

The company says that it is aware of four crashes and two injury accidents related to the brake defect.

Unfortunately, the recall information wasn’t published on the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration’s (NHTSA) website because of the government shutdown. However, Harley says that dealers and customers were notified of the recall despite the shutdown.

Harley-Davidson Recalls in Recent Years

In early 2018, Harley-Davidson issued a recall for more than 250,000 motorcycles for faulty brakes. The recall cost Harley $29.4 million and covered CVO Touring and VSRC bikes equipped with anti-lock brakes. The recall affected model years 2008 through 2011.

Then, in the fall of 2018, Harley recalled 238,000 motorcycles for an issue with bad clutches. The November recall affected several 2017 and 2018 bikes.

Additionally, in 2017, the company recalled 57,000 because of the possibility an oil line coming loose. This situation could spew into the path of a rear tire creating a slick surface and lead to a crash.

The Carlson Law Firm Can Help

Personal injuries can result in a long recovery process both physically and financially. This is particularly true for victims of motorcycle crashes. Victims of motorcycle crashes endure some of the most serious injuries after a crash. These physical and emotional pain felt from a crash caused by a motorcycles company’s negligence can be overwhelming. However, you can get justice. The compassionate attorneys at The Carlson Law Firm are ready to fight for you. We can help you recover compensation for:

  • Past and future loss of wages
  • Medical bills
  • Pain and suffering

In addition, if you lost a loved one as the result of company negligence, we can help you file a wrongful death lawsuit and recover loss of consortium and funeral expenses.

Call us today to schedule a free, no-obligation consultation.

A Carlson Law Firm client riding passenger in a 2011 Chevrolet Silverado suffered serious injuries after a defective Takata airbag exploded in a car crash.

In September 2017, a couple in a 2011 Chevrolet Silverado driving on a Texas road swerved to avoid a car driving on the wrong side of the road. In its effort to avoid hitting the car, the truck hit a center divider. The defective Takata airbag that came standard on the truck’s passenger side led to our client suffering serious injuries. The defective airbag exploded and shot shrapnel toward her.

The client lives in Texas—a state that the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration deemed a high priority zone. Therefore, the vehicle’s exposure to Texas’ mostly hot and humid climate increased the chances of the airbag explosion.

Our client suffered the severe injuries commonly found in victims of defective airbags. When the Takata airbag deployed, shrapnel shot at our client at high speeds leading to her:

  • level four concussion;
  • bruises on her face and around her eyes;
  • fractures in her left forearm, wrist, thumb, shoulder, right knee cap and ankle;
  • puncture wounds;
  • and internal bleeding to the liver.

Her injuries were the direct result of General Motor’s slow-moving pace to replace defective Takata airbags. Owners of GM vehicles received notices of the defect nearly two years before the defective airbags failed our client. However, rather than work toward repairing defective airbags, the company has made three attempts to exempt itself from the recalls.

It’s been a little over a year since our client retained our services to assist her through the Takata claims process. Our client, along with hundreds of others, submitted their Takata claims by the end of August 2018.  She is one of the hundreds of people in the first wave of claimants expected to hear back on her claim since the company agreed to a settlement. 

The Carlson Law Firm Can Help

In many defective auto cases, the process may require you to have the vehicle as evidence of your claims. However, the Takata claim doesn’t require you to have the vehicle. If you have injuries or a loved one passed away from Takata airbag defects, it is not too late to file a claim. The Carlson Law Firm has a qualified Takata airbag recall lawyer ready to assist you.

Contact us to schedule your free consultation.

Defective airbags made by Takata have been linked to at least 23 deaths and over 300 injuries worldwide. As of 2018, at least 15 of those deaths and 278 of those injuries occurred in the United States alone. Six years ago, 3.6 million Takata airbags were recalled for their potential to inflate and send shrapnel into passengers. Since then, the Takata airbag recall has grown into the largest in American automotive history. The Takata airbag recall notice covers both luxury and more affordable brands.

The recall is so widespread that many consumers have become confused and frustrated, and are left wondering if their car is affected, and what to do if so.

What You Need to Know About Takata Defective Airbags

Approximately 37 million vehicles are under recall to replace the defective and potentially deadly airbag inflators. Given the number of vehicles affected, and the seriousness of the injuries reported, receiving a Takata airbag recall notice may scare you. Receiving the notice means that you will likely have your vehicle repaired in the coming weeks. As the defenders of justice, we firmly believe that the injuries and deaths associated with the Takata defective airbags should have never happened. However, upon receiving the Takata recall notice, it is important that you begin making arrangements to get the necessary repairs as soon as possible. This repair may save you or a loved one’s life.  

Who and What Are Responsible for Takata Airbag Defects?

 Takata designed the defective airbags using ammonium nitrate as a propellant in its inflators. Unfortunately, the Japanese automotive parts company failed to include a drying agent. Ammonium nitrate degrades when exposed to moisture.

Ignition of the airbag inflator and degraded ammonium nitrate propellant can lead to an explosion. This explosion shatters the inflators and sends shrapnel into the passenger compartment and into the face, neck, and torso of passengers.

In many cases, these deadly airbags deploy without cause. In other cases, they malfunction as a result of minor accidents. Since the 1950s, cars have come equipped with airbags to save lives. Instead, Takata’s negligent design is responsible for taking lives and injuring hundreds of people around the globe.

Takata Airbag Recall Information Infographic

Common Injuries Caused by Defective Takata Airbags

In many of the tragedies involving defective Takata airbags, the victims were in minor car accidents. In fact, these crashes are so small that under normal circumstances, victims should have survived or escaped with few injuries. However, Takata’s negligence has led to exploding airbags that shoot metal shrapnel at high rates of speed at the faces and neck of vehicle occupants. Victims suffer from the following conditions:

  • Eye injuries
  • Severe lacerations
  • Skull fractures
  • Brain bleeds
  • Torn or shredded arteries
  • Stab or gunshot wound-like injuries

The human torso, neck, and head hold a person’s most important organs and major arteries. The injuries can require a victim to undergo immediate emergency surgery, reconstructive surgery or lead to permanent damage and injuries such as blindness and brain injuries.

How Does Climate Affect Defective Takata Airbags?

The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) issued a warning that vehicles exposed to long-term high heat and humidity can cause the Takata airbags to explode. Many of the vehicles under recall are in states like Texas, California, and Florida where the heat and humidity can make the chemicals inside the airbags even more unstable.

Recall Zones Based on Temperature and Humidity

Because these airbags become increasingly unstable in persistently high humidity and temperatures, NHTSA has broken the U.S. and its territories into three zones based on recall priority. This categorization is based on the state’s weather conditions and the likelihood of Takata airbag components degradation.

Takata Recall Zones

Zone A

This is the highest priority zone. If you receive a recall notice and live in one of the following states, seek repairs immediately.

  • Alabama, California, Florida, Georgia, Hawaii, Louisiana, Mississippi, South Carolina, Texas, American Samoa, Guam, the Northern Mariana Islands (Saipan), Puerto Rico and the U.S. Virgin Islands.

Zone B

Vehicles in Zone B are in the second highest priority zone. While not as urgent as Zone A, drivers should seek vehicle repairs the moment parts become available.

  • Arizona, Arkansas, Delaware, District of Columbia, Illinois, Indiana, Kansas, Kentucky, Maryland, Missouri, Nebraska, Nevada, New Jersey, New Mexico, North Carolina, Ohio, Oklahoma, Pennsylvania, Tennessee, Virginia and West Virginia.

Zone C

Although Zone C is the lowest priority, taking immediate action the moment parts become available to you will keep you and your loved ones safe.

  • Alaska, Colorado, Connecticut, Idaho, Iowa, Maine, Massachusetts, Michigan, Minnesota, Montana, New Hampshire, New York, North Dakota, Oregon, Rhode Island, South Dakota, Utah, Vermont, Washington, Wisconsin and Wyoming.

What Are Alpha Airbags?

While Takata airbags have made headlines from the last several years, you may be unfamiliar with what NHTSA considers alpha airbags. These are airbags with high-risk inflators that pose a 50 percent risk of launching shrapnel after an explosion. For owners of the following vehicles, the necessary parts for repairs are currently available.

NHTSA considers the following vehicles at a much higher risk for an airbag explosion:

  • 2001-2003 Honda and Acura vehicles
  • 2006 Ford Ranger
  • 2006 Mazda B-Series trucks

NHTSA warns that these vehicles can and should receive immediate repairs. The agency also warns that these vehicles should not be driven until the inflators receive replacement parts and repairs.

Vehicle makes and models included in the Takata airbag recall:

BMW:

2008-2013 BMW 1 Series
2000-2013 BMW 3 Series
2001-2003 BMW 5 Series
2013-2015 BMW X1
2007-2010 BMW X3
2001-2003, 2007-2013 BMW X5
2008-2014 BMW X6
2010-2011 BMW X6 Hybrid

Chrysler:

2005-2015 Chrysler 300
2007-2009 Chrysler Aspen
2007-2008 Chrysler Crossfire

Dodge:

2008-2014 Dodge Challenger
2006-2015 Dodge Charger
2005-2011 Dodge Dakota
2004-2009 Dodge Durango
2005-2008 Dodge Magnum
2003-2008 Dodge Ram 1500/2500/3500 Pickup
2005-2009 Dodge Ram 2500 Pickup
2007-2010 Dodge Ram 3500 Cab Chassis
2006-2009 Dodge Ram 3500 Pickup
2008-2010 Dodge Ram 4500/5500 Cab Chassis

Jeep:

2007-2016 Jeep Wrangler

Ferrari:

2010-2015 Ferrari 458 Italia
2014-2015 Ferrari 458 Speciale
2015 Ferrari 458 Speciale A
2012-2015 Ferrari 458 Spider
2016-2017 Ferrari 488 GTB
2016-2017 Ferrari 488 Spider
2009-2014 Ferrari California
2015-2017 Ferrari California T
2013-2017 Ferrari F12
2016-2017 Ferrari F12 tdf
2016 Ferrari F60
2012-2016 Ferrari FF
2017 Ferrari GTC4Lusso

Ford:

2007-2010 Ford Edge
2006-2012 Ford Fusion
2005-2006 Ford GT
2005-2014 Ford Mustang
2004-2011 Ford Ranger

Lincoln:

2007-2010 Lincoln MKX
2006-2012 Lincoln Zephyr/MKZ

Mercury:

2006-2012 Milan

Cadillac:

2007-2014 Cadillac Escalade
2007-2014 Cadillac Escalade ESV
2007-2013 Cadillac Escalade EXT

Chevrolet:

2007-2013 Chevrolet Avalanche
2007-2014 Chevrolet Silverado HD
2007-2013 Chevrolet Silverado LD
2007-2014 Chevrolet Suburban
2007-2014 Chevrolet Tahoe

GMC:

2007-2014 GMC Sierra HD
2007-2013 GMC Sierra LD
2007-2014 GMC Yukon
2007-2014 GMC Yukon XL

Pontiac:

2003-2010 Pontiac Vibe

Saab:

2005-2006 Saab 9-2x
2006-2011 Saab 9-3
2006-2009 Saab 9-5

Saturn:

2008-2009 Saturn Astra

Acura:

2003 Acura 3.2CL
2002-2003 Acura 3.2TL
2013-2016 Acura ILX
2013-2014 Acura ILX Hybrid
2003-2006 Acura MDX
2007-2016 Acura RDX
2005-2012 Acura RL
2009-2014 Acura TL
2009-2014 Acura TSX
2010-2013 Acura ZDX

Honda:

2001-2012 Honda Accord
2001-2011 Honda Civic
2003-2011 Honda Civic Hybrid
2001-2011 Honda Civic NGV
2010-2015 Honda Crosstour
2002-2011 Honda CR-V
2011-2015 Honda CR-Z
2003-2011 Honda Element
2010-2014 Honda FCX Clarity
2007-2013 Honda Fit
2013-2014 Honda Fit EV
2010-2014 Honda Insight
2002-2004 Honda Odyssey
2003-2015 Honda Pilot
2006-2014 Honda Ridgeline

2006-2010 Honda GL1800 Gold Wing (motorcycle)

High-Risk Honda Models:

2001-2002 Honda Civic
2001-2002 Honda Accord
2002-2003 Acura TL
2002 Honda CR-V
2002 Honda Odyssey
2003 Acura CL
2003 Honda Pilot

Jaguar/Land Rover:

2009-2015 Jaguar XF
2007-2012 Land Rover Range Rover

Mazda:

2004-2009 Mazda B-Series
2007-2012 Mazda CX-7
2007-2015 Mazda CX-9
2003-2015 Mazda6
2006-2007 Mazda Mazdaspeed6
2004-2006 Mazda MPV
2004-2011 Mazda RX-8

Mercedes-Benz

2005-2015 Mercedes-Benz C-Class
2010-2011 Mercedes-Benz E-Class
2011-2017 Mercedes-Benz E-Class Cabrio
2010-2017 Mercedes-Benz E-Class Coupe
2009-2012 Mercedes-Benz GL-Class
2010-2015 Mercedes-Benz GLK-Class
2009-2011 Mercedes-Benz ML-Class
2009-2012 Mercedes-Benz R-Class
2007-2008 Mercedes-Benz SLK-Class
2011-2015 Mercedes-Benz SLS-Class

Mitsubishi:

2012, 2014, 2016, 2017 Mitsubishi i-MiEV
2004-2007 Mitsubishi Lancer
2004-2006 Mitsubishi Lancer Evolution
2004 Mitsubishi Lancer Sportback
2006-2009 Mitsubishi Raider

Infiniti:

2003-2008 Infiniti FX
2001 Infiniti I30
2002-2004 Infiniti I35
2006-2010 Infiniti M
2002-2003 Infiniti QX4

Nissan:

2001-2003 Nissan Maxima
2002-2004 Nissan Pathfinder
2002-2006 Nissan Sentra
2007-2012 Nissan Versa

Subaru:

2003-2006 Subaru Baja
2009-2013 Subaru Forester
2004-2011 Subaru Impreza (Including WRX/STI)
2003-2014 Subaru Legacy
2003-2014 Subaru Outback
2006-2014 Subaru Tribeca
2012-2014 Subaru WRX/STI

Lexus:

2007-2012 Lexus ES350
2010-2017 Lexus GX460
2006-2013 Lexus IS250/350
2010-2015 Lexus IS250C/350C
2008-2014 Lexus IS F
2012 Lexus LFA
2002-2010 Lexus SC430

Scion:

2008-2015 Scion xB

Toyota:
2010-2016 Toyota 4Runner
2003-2013 Toyota Corolla
2003-2008 Toyota Corolla Matrix
2009-2013 Toyota Matrix
2004-2005 Toyota Rav4
2002-2007 Toyota Sequoia
2011-2014 Toyota Sienna
2003-2006 Toyota Tundra
2006-2011 Toyota Yaris (Hatchback)
2007-2012 Toyota Yaris (Sedan)
Audi:
2006-2013 Audi A3
2005-2008 Audi A4 Avant
2007-2009 Audi A4 Cabriolet
2005-2008 Audi A4 Sedan
2010-2012 Audi A5 Cabriolet
2006-2011 Audi A6 Avant
2005-2011 Audi A6 Sedan
2009-2012 Audi Q5
2017 Audi R8
2008 Audi RS 4 Cabriolet
2007-2008 Audi RS 4 Sedan
2005-2008 Audi S4 Avant
2007-2009 Audi S4 Cabriolet
2005-2008 Audi S4 Sedan
2010-2012 Audi S5 Cabriolet
2007-2011 Audi S6 Sedan
2016-2017 Audi TT
Volkswagen:
2009-2017 Volkswagen CC
2010-2014 Volkswagen Eos
2010-2014 Volkswagen Golf
2013 Volkswagen Golf R
2009-2013 Volkswagen GTI
2012-2014 Volkswagen Passat
2006-2010 Volkswagen Passat Sedan
2006-2010 Volkswagen Passat Wagon

In order to obtain the most accurate information about the airbag recall, drivers are urged to do a VIN-search. Your VIN is a 17-character code that is unique only to your vehicle. Additionally, your VIN can be found on the driver’s side of the dashboard, on your title, registration, and insurance card.

You can do a VIN search on the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration’s Recall Lookup site.

Why is the Takata Recall Occurring in Phases?

Because of the size of the recall and limited availability of parts, the Takata defective airbag recall is being carried out in phases. The recall began in May 2016 and will continue through December 2019.

Additional airbags were recalled on December 31, 2018. The final phase of the recall is scheduled for December 2019. These anticipated recalls will bring the total number of affected airbags to around 60-65 million. These vehicles are not currently under recall and will not appear when using a VIN search.

What is Taking so Long for My Airbag to Arrive?

As of Jan. 2018, NHTSA says that airbag shortages have eased significantly. At first, many affected owners learned that it could take weeks or months for their replacement airbags to arrive. Takata has ramped up and added to its assembly lines to be able to produce a million replacement kits per month. But given the scale of this recall, and the reality that some airbags may have to be replaced a second time, this recall will take years to get all of the millions of replacement airbags produced and installed into affected vehicles.

What You Can Do While Waiting for a Takata Airbag Replacement

If the recall on your car involves only the front passenger-side airbag, then don’t let anyone sit in that seat. But if you use the VIN-lookup tool and it says that the problem involves the driver’s side, you should do what you can to minimize your risk. If possible, consider:

  • Minimize your driving
  • Carpool with someone whose vehicle is not affected by the recall
  • Utilize public transportation
  • Rent a car
  • Focus on safe driving best practices to minimize the risk of a crash

Where You Can Take Your Recalled Vehicle

Once you’ve identified that your vehicle is, in fact, a recalled vehicle, call a local dealer and get it fixed for free. You do not have to take your vehicle to the dealership where you purchased the vehicle. In addition, your vehicle does not need to be under warranty. Repairs will always be free of charge.

The Dangers of Used Cars

Older vehicles often have had multiple owners and sometimes transactions aren’t recorded. This results in the potential for recall notices not making it to the right hands. Further, there is no federal requirement that sellers of used cars fix safety recalls, let alone even disclose them to potential buyers. When purchasing a used car, it is even more prudent that you take all the necessary precautions before buying.

How The Defective Airbag Attorneys at The Carlson Law Firm Can Help

If you or a loved one have suffered injury by a defective Takata airbag, you should consult with an experienced product liability attorney as soon as possible. If you are injured in a collision in which the airbag malfunctioned, you could bring a product liability lawsuit against the manufacturer of the airbag.

At The Carlson Law Firm, we have extensive experience representing victims of airbag injury. Contact us today for a free consultation.

Ovarian cancer develops when cells in the ovaries mutate and start growing abnormally. Eventually, the cells multiply at a rapid rate and form a tumor. Depending on the type and stage of the disease, cancerous cells are found inside, near or on the outer layer of the ovaries. Ovarian cancer can spread to the rest of the reproductive organs and other parts of the body if not treated early on.

Ovarian cancer ranks fifth in cancer deaths among women. In fact, the American Cancer Society estimates that in 2019 about 22,530 women will receive a new diagnosis of ovarian cancer in the United States and about 13,980 women will die from ovarian cancer.

Research on ovarian cancer continues in an effort to identify which genetic mutations are responsible for causing cancer. Although the cause of ovarian cancer has not been determined, there are some factors that increase a woman’s risk of developing the disease.

Types of Ovarian Cancer

Ovaries are small almond-shaped organs located on each side of the uterus. The ovaries store eggs or germ cells and produce female hormones estrogen and progesterone. Three kinds of cells make up the ovaries. Each of these cells can develop a different type of tumor. The type of cell where the cancer begins will determine the type of ovarian cancer developed. Ovarian cancer types include:

Epithelial tumors, which start in the thin layer of tissue that covers the outside of the ovaries. An estimated 90 percent of ovarian cancers are epithelial tumors. Almost 70 percent of women with this type of cancer do not receive a diagnosis until the disease is in an advanced stage.

Stromal tumors, which account for about 7 percent of ovarian tumors. They begin in the ovarian tissue that contains hormone-producing cells. Stromal tumors usually receive an earlier stage diagnosis compared to other ovarian tumors.

Germ cell tumors, which are rare ovarian cancers that tend to occur in teenage girls or young women. Germ cell tumors begin in the egg-producing cells. These types of tumors are cured and fertility is preserved in 90 percent of patients who receive this diagnosis.

Ovarian Cancer Risk Factors

A woman’s risk of developing ovarian cancer during her lifetime is about 1 in 78. Doctors are still researching to determine what causes ovarian cancer to form. However, there are known risk factors that can increase a woman’s chances of developing this type of cancer.  These factors include:

Genetics

Gene mutations inherited from your mother or father such as BRCA1 and BRCA2 significantly raise your risk of ovarian cancer. If you have an Eastern, European or Ashkenazi Jewish background, your risk for these mutations is higher.

Family History

Ovarian cancer can be hereditary. Your risk of developing ovarian cancer increases if your mother, sister, or daughter has or has had ovarian cancer. The more relatives you have with ovarian cancer, the higher your risk will be.

Family Cancer Syndrome

In other cases, an inherited mutation (change) in certain genes that causes a family cancer syndrome increases the risk of ovarian cancer. A family history of any of the following cancers may indicate an increased risk of ovarian cancer:

  • Breast cancer
  • Colon cancer
  • Uterine cancer
  • Rectal cancer

Talcum Powder

Many women diagnosed with ovarian cancer have no family history of the disease. Instead, these women have a history of using talcum powder as part of their feminine hygiene routine. These women are at an increased risk of developing ovarian cancer. Research shows that when applied to the genital area, sanitary napkins or condoms, particles of talcum powder can travel through the vagina, uterus and fallopian tubes and into the ovaries. When these particles embed in the ovary walls, they can cause inflammation and increase the risk of ovarian cancer.

Reproductive History

A woman’s reproductive history may play a role in the chances of developing ovarian cancer. Such factors include:

  • Started menstrual cycle before the age of 12
  • Gave birth to a first child after age 30 or not having a full-term pregnancy
  • Infertility and using fertility treatment
  • Experienced menopause after 55
  • Has never taken oral contraceptives

Age

The risk of developing ovarian cancer increases with age and most ovarian cancers develop after menopause. In fact, 50 percent of all ovarian cancers are found in women 63 years of age or older and is rare in women under the age of 40.

Ethnicity

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention reports that in the United States, white women have the highest risk of ovarian cancer followed by Hispanic women.

Obesity

Although the current information available for ovarian cancer risk and obesity is not clear, having a body mass index (BMI) of 30 or more may increase the risk of developing ovarian cancer. Obesity also has an effect on the overall survival of a woman who has developed ovarian cancer.

If you have one or more risk factors for ovarian cancer, don’t immediately think the worst. Although your chances may be higher than average, this does not indicate that you will necessarily develop the disease. It is also possible to develop ovarian cancer if you don’t have any of the known risk factors.

Reducing the Risk of Ovarian Cancer

Some women may have factors that increase their risk of ovarian cancer but all women are at risk of developing ovarian cancer. Some risk factors for ovarian breast cancer are beyond your control. However, aside from speaking to your doctor about assessing your risk of developing ovarian cancer, other risk factors may be influenced by lifestyle changes. The following factors have the potential to reduce the risk of developing ovarian cancer.

Oral contraceptive use

The use of birth control pills decreases the risk of developing ovarian cancer. Women who have taken oral contraceptives for five years or longer have a 30 to 50 percent lower risk of developing ovarian cancer than woman who have never taken them. Talk to your doctor about the benefits of taking birth control pills and if it is the right decision for you.

Pregnancy and breastfeeding

Multiple pregnancies or having a first full-term pregnancy before the age of 30 decreases the risk of ovarian cancer because women do not ovulate during pregnancy. This is also true when breastfeeding. In addition, the longer a woman breastfeeds, the lower her risk of developing ovarian cancer.

Alternatives to using talcum powder

To avoid having a 20 to 30 percent greater risk of developing ovarian cancer by using talcum powder, use alternatives such as cornstarch, arrowroot starch or baking soda.

Hysterectomy

Women who have had a hysterectomy have demonstrated a reduced risk in developing ovarian cancer. This type of surgery should only take place if the patient has valid medical reasons, not for its effect on ovarian cancer risk.

Maintaining a healthy diet and exercise

The American Cancer Society recommends staying active and eating right to maintain a healthy weight. Both of which are important to reduce the risk of cancer and other diseases.

Ovarian Cancer Symptoms

It is recommended that if you notice any of the following symptoms for longer than two weeks, you should seek medical attention because ovarian cancer symptoms do not go away.

  • Frequent bloating
  • Feeling full quickly when eating
  • Difficulty eating
  • Frequent and urgent needs to urinate
  • Lower back pain
  • Pain or discomfort in the abdomen or pelvis
  • Constipation
  • Indigestion
  • Fatigue
  • A change in the menstrual cycle
  • Weight gain or weight loss
  • Acne
  • Back pain that worsens

Talcum Powder Link to Ovarian Cancer in the News

Researchers discovered the link between applying talcum powder to female genitals and an increased risk in ovarian cancer. For decades, Johnson & Johnson knew of this information but failed to disclose it to millions of consumers. The company is now facing thousands of lawsuits alleging their cancer diagnosis is linked to the brand’s popular baby powder.

In July of 2018, a jury ordered Johnson & Johnson to pay $4.7 billion dollars to 22 plaintiffs who developed ovarian cancer after using the product. This year could be even worse for Johnson & Johnson. The company has at least 21 trials on court calendars and faces more than 11,700 claims. This can total more than $20 billion dollars in settlements.

How The Carlson Law Firm Can Help

If you or a loved one used talcum powder in your daily hygiene routine and received an ovarian or fallopian tube cancer diagnosis you may be entitled to compensation. The Carlson Law Firm has a team dedicated to protecting the rights of injured victims and their families. Let our compassionate Talcum Powder Cancer Lawsuit Attorneys evaluate your case and navigate you through the complex process that lies ahead. Contact us today for a free no-obligation consultation. We care, we can help.


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