Wednesday, June 29, 2016
Posted by at 1:47 pm
To most of us, animals are more than just pets; they are members of the family. We treat our pets with the utmost care. We take them to doggy daycare so they will not be lonely while we are at work, we groom them and pay for their medical expenses, and we patronize pet bakeries for treats. When we spend so much time doting on our animals, we expect that they arrive with a clean bill of health. So what happens when a breeder sells you a pet with an infection?
Though we may see our animals as family, in the eyes of the law they are technically a “good.” This is not to downgrade their status, but to protect you as a consumer. Since your family pet is a good, a set of rights known as “contract law” protect your purchase.
The sale of a good (yes, even that cute little puppy in the window), comes with what is referred to as an “implied warranty.” Pets are covered under a law known as the Uniform Commercial Code, which means that sellers are required to fulfill a certain number of duties during the course of the sale—whether those duties are expressly written in a contract or not.
As a consumer, you have certain rights when you buy an animal from a qualified merchant. For legal purposes, a merchant is anyone who sells goods by occupation. For pets, a merchant can be a pet store, a person who sells animals on a regular basis, or a breeder.
Implied warranty law covers a pet since it is a good. Implied warranties are just that: not expressly written. The sale of any pet carries with it the assumption that the pet is healthy and without any visible health conditions.
A seller breaches an implied warranty when he or she sells you a pet that is “unmerchantable.” The law defines unmerchantability on a case-by-case basis, but generally, a pet owner must prove that the animal purchased was unfit in some way. The law is clearer when it comes to animals that serve a purpose: For example, a hunting dog with a heart condition that keeps it from hunting/performing its duties would be unmerchantable. In the case of companion animals, however, the law is not always so clear.
Parasite infections pose a danger to both the pet and any humans who contact it. Since many types of parasites are communicable from pet to owner, a merchant would violate implied warranty in selling an animal with an infection—regardless of the pet’s purpose.
If a breeder sells you an animal with a parasite infection, he or she has done more than simply breach an implied warranty; the health of your family and new pet has been put at risk. A buyer can return an “unmerchantable” animal to the seller legally, but for the many families who bond with their new pets, this is not feasible.
As with most areas of law, the recourse for the parties responsible is determined on a case-by-case basis. Some suppliers may have to pay damages up to or beyond the purchasing price of the animal, while others may be responsible for paying any applicable veterinary bills.
If you believe a pet seller sold you an unfit animal and breached implied warranty, your best course of action is to get in touch with an experienced law firm. An attorney with a track record of excellence can provide you with the best advice and take steps to punish the guilty party’s negligence. For a free initial consultation, contact our law firm today.
The medical professionals who tend to your health have an obligation to serve you to the best of their abilities. When we think of malpractice, we most often refer to the doctors and nurses who provide you with health care, but what most people do not realize is that your pharmacist is also capable of committing malpractice.
A pharmacist is a critical member of your health care team. When your doctor writes a prescription, it is his or her job to ensure the new medication doesn’t interfere with any other medications you take. When we refer to malpractice as a whole, we are talking about any action in which a professional fails to take appropriate cautions or provide “reasonable care.” A medical professional who doesn’t act reasonably under the circumstances has committed negligence. Most pharmaceutical malpractice lawsuits fall under one of the following four categories.
The Food and Drug Administration regulates prescription medications. Before the organization clears a medicine for consumer use, the drug must undergo years of testing and clinical trials to ensure its efficacy and safety. Unfortunately, drug companies sometimes rush their medicines to the market without conducting appropriate testing. When this happens, patients bear the brunt of unforeseen side effects. The Food and Drug Administration issues recalls when it finds a prescription medication is inherently dangerous or can lead to serious side effects. Unfortunately, by the time the agency issues a recall, the damage has likely happened. If you have been hurt by taking a drug that is later recalled, you may be a candidate for a pharmaceutical malpractice case.
You may also be a candidate for a pharmaceutical malpractice suit if you have been a victim of unforeseen side effects from a prescription drug, either in the short or long term. Drug companies perform clinical trials before their products hit the market, but a three-year clinical trial may not anticipate long-term side effects from taking a medication. Some of the more serious side effects may not be apparent until 10 years after beginning to take the medication. For example, recent research reveals that long-term use of proton pump inhibitors, such as Prilosec, can lead to kidney damage.
Prescription drugs can lead to many unforeseen short-term effects, as well. If a pharmacist dispenses a medication without properly consulting your history, drugs may negatively interact and lead to injury.
Even if a drug company has tested the medication rigorously and finds it completely safe, you can be at risk for injury due to human error. Pharmacists are trained health care providers and have a duty to exercise reasonable care. When another professional would have acted differently in the same circumstances, a pharmacist may be guilty of negligence. Common forms of pharmacist negligence include:
There are numerous ways a medical professional can commit pharmaceutical negligence. If you think a medication has injured you, an experienced attorney can help. Talk to a member of our compassionate legal team today by taking advantage of our free initial consultation. We will help you decide on your next steps and get recourse from the parties responsible for your injuries. Do not pay for someone else’s negligence—get in touch with us today. You only pay if we win.
Countless cases – whether they’re settled out of court or go before a jury – hinge on proving negligence. In some situations, even a driver who hit another vehicle may have done so only because of a third party’s neglect. For instance, a person driving under the influence of drugs or alcohol may indirectly cause an accident. That individual, however, may be found fully accountable for all subsequent damages.
As an example, you may be driving on a highway when a person using a cell phone cuts you off. You slam on the brakes, a car rear-ends you, and a pileup ensues. Who is responsible – you, the driver who hit you, or the person who cut you off? Obviously, things can get complicated in such incidents. Working with a qualified legal team to uncover any negligence that may have caused the collision is the first step in protecting your rights against this type of accident.
Negligence can affect any personal injury in Texas, not only those on our freeways. For instance, if you meet with a legal team to discuss a slip and fall, they will pore over any details you provide. Were the grounds well maintained? Was the business you were visiting open and well staffed? Were there any spills, and did the manager take a reasonable degree of action to fix the problem? Proving these details, potentially before a jury, takes countless hours of hard work and dedication. If you’re injured, do your best to keep track of the following details. This will help you prove neglect in Texas:
Your Texas attorney will explore the defendant’s legal obligations to provide a safe environment for the plaintiff, whether that duty was breached or not, and what caused the incident – which can be a direct or indirect action or no action at all. Finally, he or she will assess the damage, accounting for all long-term issues that may play into your settlement. This could include physical therapy costs, job rehabilitation programs, loss of consortium, and more.
There are hundreds of details that can be the difference between a fair amount that pays for all damages over the course of your life and an insulting settlement lets the responsible party off the hook. Don’t fall for the latter. Speak with an attorney at Aaron Herbert for more information, and trust your claim to us. We’ll explore every possible factor that may have contributed to your injury, and we won’t rest until a fair settlement is awarded.
Attorney Aaron A. Herbert
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