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Red Bank Divorce Law Blog

Financial issues couples may want to consider before divorcing

Most New Jersey couples tying the knot aren't too concerned about divorce statistics, such as the fact that about half of all first marriages come to a sooner-than-expected end. The odds of subsequent marriages lasting aren't so good either. Despite all of these facts and figures, it's generally advised that couples considering a split should also consider the possible financial impact of ending a marriage.

A big consideration for most couples is the cost of divorce. In addition to fees for attorneys, spouses looking to transition back to single life may have to hire financial planners, CPAs and real estate agents. If there is emotional trauma associated with a split, there may be additional fees for counselors or therapists.

Objects left in patients after surgery could be a health hazard

New Jersey patients and others throughout the country could be vulnerable to having objects left inside of them after surgery. It is estimated that up to 6,000 patients leave a hospital with an object inside of them each year. This happens despite the fact that it is possible to prevent such an event from happening if proper precautions are in place. Needles and sponges are the two most common items that remain in a patient after a procedure.

Other items that are commonly left inside of a patient inside surgical masks, drain tips and guide wires. Forceps, scopes and tubes are also on the list of the 15 objects a surgeon is most likely to forget to remove after surgery. Objects are often left in a person because of changes made during surgery, fatigue or general human error. Heavier individuals may be more likely to be a victim of this type of mistake.

Dividing credit card debts during divorce

People in New Jersey who are considering divorce may wonder how the end of their marriages will affect their financial situation. While dividing assets is a major part of reaching a divorce settlement, it can be equally important to divide debts, including credit card debt. It can be particularly crucial to eliminate joint debts before finalizing the divorce. This can mean paying off joint credit cards with other assets or transferring the debt to cards in the name of only one person.

Since New Jersey is an equitable distribution state, credit card debt that was incurred during the marriage is not presumed to belong equally to both spouses. However, joint credit card debt specifically belongs to both parties. So long as it remains a joint debt, creditors can go after either or both spouses for the full balance. By canceling and eliminating joint debts, both parties can protect themselves from the threat of future credit defaults or bankruptcies by their former partners. It should be noted that creditors can pursue these debts regardless of the spouses' agreement in the divorce decree as they are not bound by the agreements made during the divorce.

There are times when a C-section is the best birthing option

Whether you would prefer natural birth or a C-section, you may not have a choice ultimately. Even after a relatively uneventful pregnancy, the final weeks and the labor process could require you to undergo a C-section in order to save you and/or your baby from harm.

If you do end up having a C-section, you are in good company. Roughly 32 percent of all births here in the United States happen this way. Sometimes, the procedure is planned for one reason or another, but in other cases, it's done as an emergency surgery when supposedly unforeseen issues arise during labor.

Retail worker safety during the holiday season

Whether it's selling merchandise, packing boxes, stocking shelves or delivering products, retail workers in New Jersey have a lot on their plates during the holiday season. This is why OSHA is reminding retail employers to pay attention to workplace safety and be mindful of employee payments, especially during a time when it's common to rack up overtime hours.

While extra hours can mean a much-appreciated boost in earnings, the National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health (NIOSH) reports that lost sleep and family time can significantly impact an employee's health and well-being. In fact, nearly a quarter of all employees surveyed in 2016 reported that work obligations interfered with personal and family responsibilities. Workplace stress also increases the risk of experiencing the type of injuries that may result in workers' compensation claims and days missed from work.

Trucking deaths go up, some place blame on inflexible HOS rules

Large-truck crash fatalities have reached their highest number in 29 years with 4,761 people (including about 1,300 truckers) killed in 2017. Many truckers and truck fleet owners in New Jersey and across the U.S. have formed their ideas about what has caused the rise, and these are summarized below.

A top concern among truckers is the perceived inflexibility of a federal guideline that requires them to take a 30-minute break after driving for eight consecutive hours. Because the break can cause delays, many truckers speed, endangering themselves and others in order to make up for lost time. The break can also accelerate the onset of fatigue during one's shift.

Financial mistakes and divorce

One financial mistake divorcing couples in New Jersey should take steps to avoid is fighting to maintain ownership of the family home despite the financial burden it may represent. There are many costs associated with homeownership, which can put a financial strain on the persons who own the home after the divorce, particularly if those persons have to deal with those costs with an income that is significantly lower than what they had before.

Before making a final decision about the family home, divorcing couples should consider all of their options. If they have owned the home for several years, it may be wise for one party to retain ownership of the home, particularly if it has a low tax base.

Diagnostic errors and medical malpractice

Health care diagnostic errors cause injuries and death every year in New Jersey. According to one study, diagnostic errors were the largest cause for medical malpractice claims between 2013 to 2017.

The study, which was published by malpractice services provider Coverys, found that over 33 percent of malpractice claims examined were related to misdiagnosis. Surgical or procedural errors ranked second at 24 percent and medical management errors were third at 14 percent.

OSHA enforces trenching and excavation safety standards

New Jersey residents who work in construction should know that trenching and excavation operations are resulting in more and more fatalities. OSHA recorded 130 trenching/excavation-related fatalities between 2011 and 2016, with 49 percent of them occurring between 2015 and 2016. Roughly 80 percent of these fatalities occurred within the private construction industry. OSHA has stated that trench collapsing is a risk in virtually all operations.

To increase enforcement of trenching and excavation safety standards, OSHA updated its National Emphasis Program. The revised NEP went into effect Oct. 1. For the first 90 days from that date, OSHA's regional and area offices will be providing outreach to employers to assist with compliance.

Gray divorce and health implications

New Jersey divorcees of all ages may experience some negative impact on their health from their divorce. However, divorcees who are at least 50 years old may begin to suffer from a range of physical and psychological issues; this is especially true if they have existing medical issues.

Gray divorce is a phenomenon that was identified in a 2012 study by two researchers at Bowling Green State University. According to one of the researchers, the majority of the divorces that are occurring among older adults are occurring among those who are 50 to 64 years old.

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