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The Child’s Best Interest in Child Custody

There is one core idea that is often overlooked in child custody cases – it is not about you, as it is more about the child and the child’s best interest. According to the website of the Austin child custody attorneys of Kirker Davis, LLP, the best interest of the child can be ambiguous and inconsistent, because of the many factors that affect home life. But the child’s best interest can be determined using various factors, such as those enumerated below.

Abuse and Neglect

One of the most obvious factors is the history of abuse and neglect. A parent that has received allegations or has real instances of such things may receive less favorable responses from the courts. This is not surprising, as abuse and neglect can result into injuries, nutritional problems, and emotional and psychological responses from the child that may affect his or her development.

General Living Conditions

The court also considers the child’s future life with the parent, especially on aspects that are vital for dignified living, such as food, shelter, security, education, health, and recreation. The parent that has a better financial standing and can provide better living conditions is likely to have a more favorable response from the court.

Level of Adjustment

Not because you can provide more it already means that you will automatically be granted the better custody decision, because the court also considers the level of adjustment the child may make for his or her future life with you. As much as possible, the court wants the divorce and custody to have little effect on the child’s life.

Preference of the Child

The child also has a voice, whether he or she wants to go with the mother or father. But it is important to note that the child’s preference is not absolute, but it will be considered by the court in coming up with the decision. This is because the preference of the child obviously has a reason behind it, like for example, he or she may have a better relationship with the parent he or she has chosen.

New cases of spinal cord injuries (SCI) in the United States in 2005 was 11,000. In 2014, instead of decreasing through the help of modern medicine, the number has, instead, gone up to 12,500 new cases and every year, more new SCIs, around this same number, gets added to the 276,000 children and adults believed to already be spinal cord injured. Male SCI patients make 82% of the total number, while 56% of those injured are aged between 16 and 30.

The spinal cord, which is a bundle of nerve tissues and support cells, forms the central nervous system with the brain and is one of the human body’s most delicate and sensitive parts. While the brain acts as the body’s command center, the spinal cord serves as the pathway for all information from the brain to the different parts of the body and back to the brain.

Injuries to the spinal cord can damage the spinal cord itself, the ligaments or spinal column disks, or the vertebrae. A spinal cord injury may be traumatic or non-traumatic. The former, which is characterized by a fractured, crushed, dislocated, or compressed area of the vertebrae, is usually a result of a sudden, forceful blow to the spine, or a knife or gunshot would that pierces and cuts the spinal cord. A non-traumatic spinal cord injury, other hand, is usually due to disk degeneration of the spine, infections, inflammation, cancer or arthritis.

A severe injury to the spinal cord can have devastating effects. A severe damage usually results to paralysis, either partial or total, depending on its extent and severity. Paralysis, which loss of control and function on one side of the body is called Paraplegia or partial paralysis; total loss of functions and control of body parts that are affected due to injury to the spinal cord is called Quadriplegia or total paralysis.

In Paraplegia, it is possible that a patient would still have sensation despite having lost control in the paralyzed area. With regard to total paralysis, total loss of control starts from the area of the spinal cord that has been injured down to the rest of the body; this means that the higher the injury, the greater the extent of paralysis.

Vehicular accident was identified as the major cause of spinal cord injuries before the year 2000. In 2014, a study by the Center for Surgical Trials and Outcomes Research of the Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine shows that falls is the new leading cause of spinal cord injuries, especially in older people. Falls can happen anywhere. Very often, though, hazards that increase risks of accidental falls are due to someone else’s act of negligence, like failure to wipe and clean slippery surfaces, replace or fix a torn carpet, put up signs that warn of uneven flooring, or tidy up exposed electrical wires.

According to Zavodnick, Zavodnick & Lasky, LLC, a personal injury lawyer is one persons you should go to if you fall accidentally due to a hazard that should not have been there or which should have been fixed or removed. He or she may be able to assess if your accident merits the chance of seeking compensation, especially if the accident results to an injury.

Man in Handcuffs

61-year old Mamadou Diallo was arrested and charged with manslaughter after beating and killing a man who broke into his home and allegedly raped his wife at around 10 pm May 30th in the Morrisania section. He was later on released on his own recognizance.

According to reports, 43-year old Earl Nash allegedly ripped the clothes of Diallo’s 51-year old wife and smashed her head into a chair before managing to cut loose and called her husband on the phone. According to their neighbors, Nash had been acting aggressively to other women in that building.

Diallo was outside the building when he received the call. He then caught up with the suspect on the 6th floor hallway of 1240 Washington Ave. The 61-year old reportedly assaulted Nash with a tire iron. On the other hand, Nash attacked Diallo with a leather belt.

Cops found Nash unconscious and unresponsive with severe trauma to his head and body. He was rushed to the Lincoln Hospital in critical condition. He eventually died.

Prior to his death, Nash had been arrested 19 times and was only released from jail last year after nine years in prison. He was charged with bribery and drug possession.

Regardless of whether you own a car, motorbike, or any other type of motorized vehicle, you need to have liability insurance before setting out to the road. If you own and ride a motorcycle, the laws and requirements for liability insurance can depend on your state. Nevertheless, the minimum should be enough to cover for physical injuries property damage. Such liability coverage is often the ones used to cover for expenses when you are the one that caused the accident.

If you wish to have more coverage, then you might consider getting additional insurance coverage. In case you want to be covered for motorcycle replacement and repairs, you might need to get the comprehensive and collision coverage, which is especially important in events or theft or accidents. According to the website of Karlin, Fleisher & Falkenberg, insurance quotes may also include underinsured/uninsured motorist coverage and PIP (personal injury protection) or no-fault insurance to ensure that those who were injured in a collision either as passengers or pedestrians. There are so many options and additional insurance coverage that you can get to make sure that you will not have financial difficulties when you get into an accident. You can ask and talk with your insurance provider regarding customizing the limits and deductibles to make the payments and insurance affordable and easier to the pocket.

Depending on the requirements of your state and what type of coverage you, the liability insurance can be different from one motorist to another. Fortunately, there are many online insurance providers that can provide you a quote and other services to ensure you get the best deals. There is nothing more important than having the right type of liability insurance, especially with such fragile vehicle as motorcycles. Liability insurance gives everyone the opportunity to become responsible motorists and ensure that everyone on the road are safe guaranteed of their wellbeing.


To believe that marriage is only between a man and a woman, much more to openly express this belief, is nothing less than spreading a message of hate, at least according to Councilman Daniel Dromm of the New York City Council. Councilman Dromm, however, is not the only one with this view. All other Council members, led by New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio, share the same stance. The main reason why the Mayor has called on all New Yorkers to boycott Chick-fil-A, which serves plump juicy chicken breasts tucked between hot buttered buns, simply because this company’s president does not approves of same-sex marriage.

Chick-fil-A, now about to open its third branch (this time in Queens, the district that Councilman Dromm represents), is owned by a devout Christian family. It was in 2012 when its president, Dan Cathy, told a reporter about his belief that marriage is between a man and a woman. Since then, militant LGBT leftwing lawmakers and activists have never tired airing their objection which, in turn, got the Mayor’s attention. In addition to saying that what Chick-fil-A’s owners said was wrong, the Mayor also told online news service provider DNAInfo.com that he will not eat at Chick-fil-A and would not urge any other New Yorker to do so.

Besides the cash donations that Chick-fil-A has made to a number of NYC charities, it also employs hundreds of New Yorkers, which translates to a substantial amount of taxes the the city’s chests. Obviously, though, these do not count to the good Mayor and Councilman Dromm, who personally organized the first Queens LGBT Pride Parade and Festival after founding the Queens Lesbian and Gay Pride Committee.

Meanwhile, amid all the publicity, many New Yorkers, rather than heeding the Mayor’s call to boycott Chick-fil-A, are heading to the fast food restaurant to enjoy more chicken and waffle fries, and deliciously refreshing lemonade which, according to one keen observer, seem to make people more pleasant and easy going.

teen_bullyingA high school female student, a victim of bullying in her school, decided to end being a victim of her classmate bullies by ending her own life.

Aileen, a 17-year-old 2016 semifinalist for the New York Times College Scholarship program and who also happens to have a twin sister studying in the same school, left the school campus during lunchtime one Thursday and stepped into the path of a subway train in the City of New York.

The tragic incident prompted to a number of students to approach the school’s grief counselor before who they expressed remorse for their harsh treatment of Aileen. They confessed to calling her awkward, ugly or stupid.

Bullying, which remains to be a major problem, especially in many city public high-schools, affects at least one in every five students. Bullying can take place anywhere, in or out of school, and its form can be verbal or physical. Physical bullying, specifically, may be directed against a peer, or against a person older or younger than the bully; it may also be directed towards a victim’s property, which the bully may use either to intimidate, or inflict harm on, the victim. Verbal bullying, on the other hand, can include making obscene remarks towards the victim, name-calling, spreading rumors about the victim, teasing or threatening.

About 45 States have bullying laws, with New York passing its own legislation very recently. However, despite these laws, many school authorities reveal that bullying still persists, one major reason is because the bullied never seek help, trying to deal with his or her pain and sufferings alone. Sadly, though, the only solution a bullied often sees in ending his or her pains is through suicide.

Nobody ever plans to be in an accident. Nobody wants it and nobody in their right mind would ever ask for it to happen to them. It is hurtful and stressful, especially in the aftermath of the thing, and can sometimes affect you for the rest of your life.

Some accidents, for example, can leave you with a permanent disability that could mean you might never walk again. In other cases, the survivor is left to deal with Post-traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD), which can be just as debilitating as it involves flashbacks, social anxiety, panic attacks, clinical depression, and so on…

So what can you do if you’ve been injured in an accident? And, more importantly, what are you owed?

If you were wrongfully injured due to an accident, it is important to remember that there is more than the shallow waters to wade through. An initial settlement in the form of a seemingly substantial lump sum may be offered by the wrongful party’s insurance companies, if the injured party does not have legal representation. Though the sum may seem like a temptingly quick solution to a terrible situation, there are more factors to consider.

There are variables that must be calculated—variables that you may not have initially thought about as you would be, after all, in a state of duress following an accident. Emotionally charged people are not exactly in their best, most objective state of minds to be making important decisions. Help from experienced and knowledgeable people, such as experienced legal help, are the best friends that one could have after an accident for they not only know the best way to recover from such a situation, but they are also the ones who can represent the case well enough and wholly enough, in such a way that you can be given the justice that you so rightly deserve.

Baby Sitter
New Year’s Eve is just around the corner and, for a lot of people, that means for countless celebrations occurring all over the city—and someone’s making a profit from all of it.

Babysitting services are popular services offered by young people towards adults who would entrust them with the care of their children for a night due to one reason or another, usually to spend some time as a couple. Many couples still follow this practice for New Year’s celebrations and so employ babysitters for their children – however, the holiday comes with an increased price.

While amateur babysitters often make around $10 to $22 per hour, the rates from reliable babysitting services can range from $40 to $50 an hour.

Noa Mintz, teenage founder of Nannies by Noa, has said that the higher fees are reasonable, given that the sitters would spend the holiday with someone else’s children. Mintz goes on to say that: “It’s not the same as being with friends and family.”

While some mothers in the New York City area, such as Joanna Stanberry from the Upper West Side, have called the higher rate as “totally excessive”, there are others – such as Caroline Blackman Coakley from Manhattan – who say that the competence of and the trustworthiness that can be bestowed upon a sitter to care for her children was “priceless”.

State workers in New York would see a raise in their paycheck as Gov. Andrew Cuomo plans to announce an hourly minimum rate of $15, according to a report by the NY Times. This move makes the minimum wage of public employees in New York far higher than in any other states, and it also places the state in the frontline of a movement against stagnant pays.

According to Mr. Cuomo, it’s high time that a wage increase should be implemented because insufficient minimum wage keeps dragging many families across the nation down. He plans to implement the increase gradually, which could benefit approximately 10,000 workers. State workers outside New York City would see a $15 per hour rate by the end of 2021. On the other hand, due to a higher cost of living, employees living in NYC would have their wages climb to $15 faster, by the end of 2018.

Many admired the governor’s move, including Paul Sonn, general counsel at the National Employment Law Project. According to Sonn, Mr. Cuomo’s move was a testament to the “power of the movement towards $15 wages.” However, some fiscal groups warned about the move’s possible implications to the state’s growth and economy.

Among the many job categories that will benefit from the increase include custodial staff, lifeguards, and office assistants.

Samuel Harrell, a 30-year-old black inmate at the Fishkill Correctional Facility in Beacon New York, died last April 21 after more than a dozen witnesses saw him being handcuffed and severely beaten by a group of about 20 corrections officers. Now, the office of the United States attorney in Manhattan is working with the Dutchess County district attorney’s office on the brutal circumstances surrounding his death.


According to a report by the New York Times, a total of 19 other prisoners witnessed the attack on Harrell unfold. Based on their accounts, Harrell had gotten into a confrontation with several corrections officers after “packed his bags and announced he was going home, though he still had several years left to serve on his drug sentence.” Eyewitness reports note that the confrontation quickly became violent, escalating to Harrell—who is known to have a history of erratic behavior commonly linked to bipolar disorder—being “repeatedly kicked and punched”.

The New York Times reports eyewitness accounts, saying that the victim had endured racial slurs as he was being assaulted by his attackers. Harrell was then thrown “thrown or dragged down a staircase”. According to one of the inmates, Harrell ended up on the landing, “bent in an impossible position”. Witnesses also point out that many of the officers that had attacked Harrell were members of a group known around the facility as the ‘Beat Up Squad’.

While corrections officer called for emergency assistance, Harrell’s medical records show that the ambulance crew were told that he had suffered from an overdose of a synthetic marijuana substance. Still, as the New York Times was able to uncover, an autopsy report from the Orange County medical examiner found that Harrell had died of cardiac arrhythmia and had suffered several cuts and bruises to his head and extremities. The autopsy had only traces of tobacco and antidepressant in Harrell’s system and ruled the manner of his death as homicide.

It was these accounts that led U.S. attorney for the Southern District Preet Bharara to begin “coordinating and working” with the district attorney of Dutchess County in investigating Harrell’s death. Similarly, Dutchess County’s William V. Grady was originally quoted by the New York Times saying that “[the] very nature of this case calls for a full, fair and objective investigation into not only potential criminal law violations, but constitutional violations as well”.

The Huffington Posts reports that Harrell’s death has launched protests in upstate New York as part of the growing Black Lives Matter movement all over America. The movement calls attention to the overwhelming number of police brutality cases against African American individuals. It began after the 2013 acquittal of George Zimmerman for the shooting of 17-year-old Trayvon Martin. It then gained significant traction after the high-profile deaths of Michael Brown and Eric Garner in 2014.