Ziff Law’s Jim Reed Again Named Among Best Lawyers In National Directory

Jim Reed, managing partner of the Ziff Law Firm,

Jim Reed, managing partner of the Ziff Law Firm,

Jim Reed, managing partner of the Ziff Law Firm in Elmira, has been selected by his peers to be featured in a national directory of top-rated attorneys for the fifth year in a row.

Adam Gee of the Ziff Law Firm.

Adam Gee of the Ziff Law Firm.

Jim, selected as a Best Lawyer in personal injury and medical malpractice law, was named to the 2016 Best Lawyers in America guide following a survey of lawyers in his geographical region and area of practice. Jim was first selected for the 2012 guide.

In September 2014, Jim was named the 2015 Plaintiffs’ Lawyer of the Year by the Best Lawyers in America guide among personal injury lawyers in the Southern New York Region, based on the recommendations of lawyers in Chemung, Steuben, Tompkins, Broome and Tioga, N.Y., counties.

Jim, who has been practicing law since 1986, has argued cases at every level in the New York State court system and has successfully managed many multi-million dollar cases. His practice handles serious personal injury and malpractice cases,

Jim is also the legal expert for WETM-TV in Elmira and appears in a segment called “Law Talk” at about 12:20 p.m. each Wednesday on WETM to discuss legal issues in the news.

Jim’s selection as a Best Lawyer shows that he has an excellent reputation in the Twin Tiers legal community, and a trial lawyer’s reputation means everything.

Every client should care about the reputation of their lawyer because it can influence the success or failure of their case. If you have a good reputation, as Jim does, opposing counsel and judges afford you courtesy and respect. They know that every case handled by a lawyer of Jim’s stature is a good case.

The American Lawyer, a magazine and website that reports news on the legal profession, describes the annual Best Lawyers guide as “the most respected referral list of attorneys in practice.”

To read more about the Best Lawyers guide, click here,

Thanks for reading,

Adam
__________________________________________

Adam M. Gee, Esq.
NY and PA Injury and Malpractice Attorney
The Ziff Law Firm, LLP
303 William Street
Elmira, NY  14901
Phone: (607)733-8866
Fax: (607)732-6062
Email: [email protected]

 


NY Medical Malpractice Lawyer Urges Albany To Change NY Medical Malpractice Law

medical-malpractice

New York State may soon offer new hope for medical patients with older malpractice claims who get locked out of the courthouse by the state’s short and unreasonable statute of limitations.  Currently, N.Y. is just one of six states still clinging to an old law that is grossly unfair to malpractice victims.  These states include Arkansas, S. Dakota and Idaho.

The law right now says the clock starts ticking on malpractice claims from the moment a medical error is made. People have 2.5 years to bring legal action from that moment. But for people who don’t discover the malpractice until after the 2.5 years, there is no legal remedy. The proposed new law, which would start the 2.5-year clock at the time of discovery, would be much better for residents and is LONG overdue.

Urge State Sen. Tom O'Mara to co-sponsor the new medical malpractice legislation.

Urge State Sen. Tom O’Mara to support the new medical malpractice legislation.

Let me use an example to illustrate the importance of the new law. Assume a woman had a mammogram three years ago that was incorrectly read and she is not told that the mammogram revealed breast cancer.

A repeat mammogram done today shows the breast cancer, which is now much bigger and the cancer has spread to other organs.  In reviewing the current mammogram, the doctor looks back at the mammogram that was done three years ago and realizes that a huge mistake was made and she should have been told she had a mass that could have been easily treated three years ago.

Under our current law, she would not be able to pursue legal action because the 2.5-year time limit for medical malpractice claims has already expired.

So there is new hope in Albany right now, but I need your help.

I urge Twin Tiers residents to support the state legislation, which passed the state Assembly and is now in the state Senate. New York is just one of six states that has the old law.

State Sen. Tom Libous, R-Binghamton, is the sponsor of this important bill and he is joined by 33 co-sponsors.   Our local state Sen. Tom O’Mara, R-Big Flats, has not become a co-sponsor.

I urge all Southern Tier residents to contact Sen. O’Mara’s office and ask him to support the new law. Gov. Cuomo has said he will sign it once it passes in the Senate.

Contact Sen. O’Mara’s office here.

Thanks for reading and helping to make a difference,

Jim

Today’s topic was discussed on the June 17 edition of Law Talk on WETM News at Noon. Catch us every Wednesday, talking about legal issues in the news, at about 12:20 p.m.

_________________________________

James B. Reed
NY & PA Injury & Malpractice Lawyer
Ziff Law Firm, LLP
Office: (607)733-8866
Toll-Free: 800-ZIFFLAW (943-3529)
Blogs: NYInjuryLawBlog.com and
            NYBikeAccidentBlog.com


Nominate Your Hometown Hero Today!

Hero logo

The Ziff Law Firm is teaming up with the Elmira Pioneers again this summer to honor a Hometown Hero of the Game for each Pioneers home game from nominations provided by Twin Tiers residents.

Anyone who gives back to their community through their work, actions or volunteer efforts is eligible to become a Hometown Hero

Dunnfield1bigThose selected by the Ziff Law Firm as Hometown Heroes – and up to seven of their family members and friends – will be guests of the law firm at a Pioneers game at Dunn Field, where they will be seated in a specially designated box.

The Hometown Hero will be recognized during the game by the public-address announcer. The Ziff Law Firm first recognized Hometown Heroes during the 2012 season. About 100 Heroes were recognized in the first three seasons.

To nominate a Hometown Hero:

Online form: www.zifflaw.com/hero       

Email: [email protected]

Mail: 303 William St., Elmira, NY 14901             

Call: (607) 733-8866 or (800) 943-3529

The Elmira Pioneers play in the Perfect Game Collegiate Baseball League, a summer league with 10 teams from across New York state. The Pioneers’ season begins June 2 in Albany against the Dutchmen and the first home game is 7 p.m. June 5 against the Adirondack Trail Blazers at Dunn Field. The Pioneers have 25 home games in the regular season, which concludes July 30.

The Ziff Law Firm looks forward to turning the spotlight on people making a difference in our community, said attorney Adam Gee of the Ziff Law Firm

“Service to your community, whether through one’s occupation or volunteer work, is as American as baseball and apple pie, so we can’t imagine a better way to thank our Hometown Heroes,” Adam said. “The Ziff Law Firm feels privileged to sponsor this program and looks forward to meeting our heroes and sharing their stories.”

Elmira Pioneers’ co-owner Don Lewis said part of his dream with the purchase of the team was to give back to his community. “We are proud for our third year as owners to partner with the Ziff Law Firm in hosting the Hometown Heroes program at Historic Dunn Field.”

The Ziff Law Firm has saluted military veterans with its Veteran of the Game honor at each Elmira Jackals hockey game for the last six seasons at First Arena. In that time, almost 250 veterans have been applauded by Jackals fans for their service to our country

“Through our Veterans of the Game program with the Elmira Jackals, we have been so pleased to meet and honor local veterans and give them the recognition they deserve,” Adam said. “But veterans are not the only people in the community worthy of recognition

“There are everyday heroes in our midst, and these are the folks we’ll be recognizing this summer,” he said. “Our Hometown Heroes could be police officers or firefighters or other emergency workers, or they could be people doing other good work in the community.”

Thanks for reading!

Jim Reed, NY & PA Injury Lawyer
[email protected]

 

 


Ziff Law’s Adam Gee Rated Among The Top Trial Lawyers In The Country!

Adam Gee Smaller File size PhotoAttorney Adam Gee of the Ziff Law Firm is among the top trial lawyers in the country, as determined by the National Association of Distinguished Counsel (NADC).

Adam, was recently named a member of the Nation’s Top One Percent for 2015 by the NADC. He was selected by an independent panel of attorneys and approved by an NADC review board because of his high legal standards.

Once candidates are nominated, NADC researchers study their background and performance and pass on their recommendations to the panel for review. The panel makes its selections for a board of former judges to review and approve.

Adam devotes his practice to representing people injured through the actions of others and medical malpractice. A motorcycle rider himself, Adam represents many bikers injured by careless drivers. Adam has been an attorney for 18 years and has been with Ziff Law since 2004.

“As one of the hardest-working and most fearless trial lawyers I know, it came as no surprise to me that the NADC honored Adam as being among the top 1 percent of trial lawyers in the country!” said Ziff Law managing partner Jim Reed.

NADC_logo_200“I am humbled to be recognized by such a prestigious organization as the NADC,” Adam said. “I work as hard as I can for every client because I know that their ability to put their life back together may depend on successful I am in obtaining a recovery for them. To have my effort and results recognized by a national review board of my peers is extremely gratifying.

To learn more about NADC, go here.


Marine Corps Veterans And Families Once Stationed At Camp Lejeune Could Face Serious Health Risks, Says NY and PA Injury Lawyer

Jack Schamel Smaller File

Jack Schamel, Former Marine and Licensed Workers Comp Rep.

The Ziff Law Firm wants our many friends in the military veteran community to know about a serious health risk linked to a Marine Corps base in North Carolina, and health benefits they may qualify for now.

The U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs has announced that Marines Corps veterans and their families who lived in or worked at the Camp Lejeune Marine Corps base from the 1950s through the 1980s may have serious health conditions because they were exposed to contaminated water.

Jack Schamel was a Marine in the 1950s.

Jack Schamel was a Marine in the 1950s.

The VA said the water had industrial solvents, benzene and other chemicals. As a result, the VA is paying medical benefits to help the veterans and their families.

Veterans and family members who served in active duty or resided at Camp Lejeune for 30 days or more between Aug. 1, 1953, and Dec. 31, 1987, may be eligible for VA health benefits for 15 medical conditions.

This terrible story has hit close to home for the Ziff Law Firm family. Our longtime Licensed Workers’ Compensation Representative, Jack Schamel, is one of the Marine Corps veterans exposed at Camp Lejeune.

Jack is battling a form of blood cancer called multiple myeloma and the VA is now paying $12,000 a month for the medication he takes. He tells me the VA is also paying for doctor co-pays for the past.

Jack, who retired as a sergeant in 1958 after five years in the corps, was at Camp Lejeune in 1954 and 1958.

Jack has this message for others who were at Camp Lejeune:

“This information was not widely publicized, so there are many veterans out there who have no idea what they may be entitled to as a result of being stationed at Camp Lejeune.

“If veterans were stationed at Lejeune and they have any of the conditions listed on the VA website, they most likely would be automatically approved.

“Even if they are not sick now, they should register in case they become ill later.

“All veterans have to do is get their military records and send a copy of the page showing their duty stations to the VA to get started.

“This medical program has been a life saver for me since I did not want to pay $12,000 a month for medication.”

To learn more about the medical program and what it covers, click here.

To request medical records, click here.

Thanks for reading!

Jim Reed, NY & PA Injury Lawyer
[email protected]

 

 

                

 

 


Woman, Child In Stroller Struck By Truck In Corning Crosswalk, Says NY and PA Personal Injury Lawyer

Police car image

A 29-year-old woman and a 3-year-old child she was pushing in a stroller were injured Thursday when they were struck by a pickup truck while crossing East Denison Parkway in Corning, police said.

The driver of the pickup truck told police he did not see the woman and the stroller with the child as he was turning left.

It is inexcusable that a driver could be so inattentive as to miss a woman walking a stroller through the crosswalk on Denison Parkway. I have personally handled almost the exact same case in the past with a pedestrian struck in the crosswalk at Cohocton Street crossing Denison. In my investigation, I determined that Denison is very well lit and even on a cloudy, overcast and rainy night, a pedestrian is visible from hundreds of yards away. The only way a driver could not see a pedestrian in the crosswalk is if they have their eyes off the road for many, many seconds or simply aren’t paying attention to what is going on around them. 

According to news reports here and here:

Brittany Neu was crossing East Denison Parkway at about 3 p.m. Thursday at the intersection with Cohocton Street, in front of Dunkin Donuts, while pushing a stroller with a 3-year-old when she was struck by the truck. The driver was was turning left from Cohocton Street onto East Denison Parkway.

crosswalk signNeu was thrown about 10 feet by the impact of the truck, police said.

City firefighters and a Rural/Metro Ambulance crew treated Neu and the child at the scene, then transported them to the Corning Fire Department. Neu was airlifted by a Guthrie helicopter to Robert Packer Hospital in Sayre, Pa. The child was also transported to Robert Packer.

Their injuries were not considered life-threatening, police said.

Witnesses said Neu was within the markings of the crosswalk when she was struck. The stroller was not struck but toppled over during the accident, police said.

The driver was cooperative and went to the police department for questioning, police said.

The intersection was closed for about an hour during the start of the investigation, which is continuing. No tickets have been issued yet, police said.

Thanks for reading,

Adam
__________________________________________

Adam M. Gee, Esq.
NY and PA Injury and Malpractice Attorney
The Ziff Law Firm, LLP
303 William Street
Elmira, NY  14901
Phone: (607)733-8866
Fax: (607)732-6062
Email: [email protected]


Careless Avoca School Bus Driver Drags Girl Almost A Half-Mile, Says NY and PA Injury Lawyer

 

Bus stop signA careless school bus driver dragged a Steuben County girl for almost a half-mile Tuesday, Fortunately, the little girl was not seriously injured.

According to local news reports here and here:

The girl’s book bag got hung up on the bus door as she was leaving the Avoca Central School bus at about 3:30 p.m. Tuesday on County Route 55 in the Town of Fremont, north of Hornellsville.

The girl, who was not identified by police, was dragged four-tenths of a mile before the driver noticed her!

Bus drivers are required to watch the students to make sure they are clear of the bus before even shutting off the flashing lights, much less starting down the road. At this point, no one knows what this bus driver was doing but he or she certainly wasn’t paying any attention to the student  – which is the driver’s primary responsibility.

The girl was treated at St. James Mercy Hospital in Hornell for foot injuries and released.

Police are still investigating the incident.  Anyone with information concerning this incident is urged to call the local authorities.

Thanks for reading,

Adam
__________________________________________

Adam M. Gee, Esq.
NY and PA Injury and Malpractice Attorney
The Ziff Law Firm, LLP
303 William Street
Elmira, NY  14901
Phone: (607)733-8866
Fax: (607)732-6062
Email: [email protected]


Be Safe And Smart — Don’t Pass Snow Plows This Winter

www.timesunion.com

www.timesunion.com

Everyone knows you should not pass a stopped school bus when its red lights are flashing, and now that the snow is flying in the Twin Tiers, many people are wondering if they can pass a snow plow because they have flashing amber lights.

Is it legal to pass a snow plow? The simple answer is yes, you “can”, but why would you want to do it?

It’s not recommended for many reasons.

According to the New York State Department of Transportation, snow plow operators have trouble seeing motorists and pedestrians that are too close because their field of vision is limited by blind spots.

Also: 

  • The wing blades of snow plows obscure side views.
  • The size and weight of snowplows make them difficult to maneuver or stop quickly, especially since the highway ahead of a plow often is slippery or snow-covered.

So give the plow operators plenty of room to do their job, and BE PATIENT.

About those flashing amber lights:

New York State Vehicle and Traffic Law requires that plows and other “hazard vehicles” have amber lights to warn motorists and pedestrians to expect the unexpected, and to stay clear of the plows and other vehicles.

DOT logoFor safety reasons, motorists and pedestrians should adhere to the following guidelines, according to NYSDOT:

  • Stay a safe distance away from snowplows. The safest place for motorists is well behind the snowplows where the road is clear and salted. The safest place for pedestrians is on the sidewalk, and in clear vision of the snowplow driver.
  • Never assume that a plow driver can see you.
  • Yield to a snowplow, giving the plow a wide berth with room to maneuver.
  • Beware of deicing materials that may be released from the plow and keep your distance from them.
  • Motorists should make sure to have clear vision ahead and that passing is permitted before attempting to pass a snowplow.
  • On two-lane roads where passing is not permitted, be patient.
  • Be mindful of where snowplows are on multi-lane highways. Watch for plows in travel lanes, on a shoulder or entering the road from a ramp or median turnaround. They also may need to back up, which may impede routine traffic flow.
  • After passing a snowplow, use caution when returning to the driving lane ahead of the plow. The plow blade extends several feet ahead of the truck.
  • Move as far away from the center line as safely possible when meeting a snowplow on a two-lane road coming from the opposite direction.
  • Watch for “white-outs” created by blowing snow coming off the snowplow blade.
  • Don’t travel beside a plow for sustained periods, especially when the plow is cutting through deep snow. Plows can be pushed sideways after hitting drifts or snow banks.

This blog post was adapted from a “Law Talk” segment with me during the WETM News at Noon on Jan. 7, 2015. Ziff Law Firm lawyers discuss legal issues in the news at 12:20 p.m. every Wednesday on Law Talk. Set your DVR to catch the five-minute segments each week!

Thanks for reading!

Jim

_________________________________

James B. Reed
NY & PA Injury & Malpractice Lawyer
Ziff Law Firm, LLP
Office: (607)733-8866
Toll-Free: 800-ZIFFLAW (943-3529)
Blogs: NYInjuryLawBlog.com and
            NYBikeAccidentBlog.com

 


Be Sure Your Sidewalk Is Safely Clear Of Ice And Snow This Winter, Says NY and PA Injury Lawyer

edmonton-slippery-sidewalks

It’s January in the Twin Tiers, and even though we have not seen a lot of snow yet this winter, we have seen plenty of ice on sidewalks and roadways.

icy signIt will be treacherous walking until we get our January thaw.

So if you slip and fall and are injured on someone else’s sidewalk, who is responsible?

Generally, it’s the property owners’ responsibility to make sure their sidewalk is clear of snow, ice and any other hazards.

In the City of Elmira, for example, homeowners are required by both city and state codes to clear their sidewalks.

Section 302.3 of the Property Maintenance Code of the State of NY requires a homeowner to do the following: All sidewalks, walkways, stairs, driveways, parking spaces and similar areas shall be kept in a proper state of repair, and maintained free from hazardous conditions.

In the City of Elmira, homeowners are responsible for clearing snow and ice from the sidewalk in front of their property. If you fail to clear the sidewalk within 12 hours after it starts snowing, you can be fined $100 by Code Enforcement. It is also the homeowner’s responsibility to shovel out fire hydrants on or near their property. If a fire were to break out, the Elmira Fire Department would lose valuable time attempting to locate and dig out a buried fire hydrant.

The Elmira Department of Public Works clears the sidewalk from all city-owned properties and parks with tractors.

Aside from legal obligations, keeping your property safe is the right thing to do for your neighbors! Nobody wants to have a person fall on their property because they did not bother to shovel or salt icy spots.

The bottom line is if you fail to clean your walk and someone falls on your property, you are more than likely to face some sort of legal ramifications.

I talk to people all the time who fall on snow and ice and the first thing we investigate is whether that property owner properly cleared their sidewalk of snow and ice. If you didn’t, you could face civil liability and the insurance company handling your homeowners’ insurance will have to deal with it.

Lately, I have noticed many business owners don’t clear the snow and ice from their property. That is inexcusable. You are inviting people to come to your business and at a minimum you should make it safe so people can get there without hurting themselves.

It’s winter and it’s New York State. It’s simple. Do the right thing. Make plans to keep your property safe, because if you don’t and someone is injured or killed on your property, you could face some major legal troubles.

This blog post was adapted from a “Law Talk” segment with me during the WETM News at Noon on Jan. 14, 2015. Ziff Law Firm lawyers discuss legal issues in the news at 12:20 p.m. every Wednesday on Law Talk. Set your DVR to catch the five-minute segments each week!

Thanks for reading!

Jim

_________________________________

James B. Reed
NY & PA Injury & Malpractice Lawyer
Ziff Law Firm, LLP
Office: (607)733-8866
Toll-Free: 800-ZIFFLAW (943-3529)
Blogs: NYInjuryLawBlog.com and
            NYBikeAccidentBlog.com

 


Outspoken Doctor’s Great TED Talk Pulls Back Curtain On Secrecy Of Medical Community, Says NY and PA Medical Malpractice Attorney

Dr. Leana Wen.

Dr. Leana Wen.

I recently learned about a great TED Talk about the secrecy in the medical community from a local doctor.

Dr. Leana Wen of Washington, D.C., talked for 15 minutes about all the things your doctor won’t tell you. An emergency physician, Dr. Wen was born in Shanghai but came to America as a child. She was a Rhodes Scholar at Oxford and is now the director of Patient-Centered Care Research in the Department of Emergency Medicine at George Washington University

You can learn more about the TED Talk here.

Dr. Wen is leading a campaign called Who’s My Doctor, a long-overdue drive for transparency in medicine. Among other things, Dr. Wen feels that Dr’s have an obligation to let their patient’s know if they are receiving compensation of any sort from drug or medical device manufacturers.  Her point is a good one:  a patient has a right to know if their Dr. has any financial interest in recommending a particular drug or device as that financial interest may consciously or sub-consciously influence their recommendation.

I would encourage everyone to watch the TED Talk — it is only about 15 minutes — and learn more about Dr. Wen by clicking on the links above.

Her TED Talk is insightful for anyone navigating the difficult world of medical care. And even if you or someone you love is not in that position now, sooner or later, we will all need some form of medical care.

So be prepared.

I particularly liked the message: “Openness improves care, reduces mistakes and results in less medical malpractice.”

I find it disconcerting that lawyers are ethically required to notify clients when they have a conflict of interest that might impair their judgment but doctors do not have a similar ethical requirement to do so.

I am mystified how doctors can receive hundreds of thousands of dollars a year serving as “consultants” to drug companies yet they are not required to disclose that very relevant information to their patients when making decisions about what particular drugs they will to treat that patient.

Here are some excerpts:

  • “We can bridge the disconnect between what doctors do and what patients need. We can get there because we have been there before and we know that transparency gets us to that trust.”

  • “It’s not just patients who are scared. Doctors are scared, too. We are afraid of patients finding out who we are and what medicine is all about. So what do doctors do? We put on our white coats and we hide behind them. And of course the more we hide, the more people want to know what we are hiding.”

  • “The sickness of fear has taken over and the patients suffer the consequences.”

  • “Being totally transparent is scary. You feel naked, exposed. and vulnerable. But that vulnerability, that humility, it can be an extraordinary benefit to the practice of medicine. When doctors are willing to step off their pedestals, take off our white coats and show our patients who we are and what medicine is all about, that’s when we begin to overcome the sickness of fear.”

I would conclude with a challenge to our local doctors to join those thoughtful doctors who have already signed up on Who’s My Doctor. It seems to me that if you have nothing to hide, why wouldn’t you agree to provide the basic information necessary for patients to make an informed decision about the doctor with whom they wish to treat?

Thanks for reading,

Jim

_________________________________

James B. Reed
NY & PA Injury & Malpractice Lawyer
Ziff Law Firm, LLP
Office: (607)733-8866
Toll-Free: 800-ZIFFLAW (943-3529)
Blogs: NYInjuryLawBlog.com and
            NYBikeAccidentBlog.com