• Let me preface this posting with the fact that I am an EMT former First Responder, wife is RN, and father a physician and professor of medicine. WE all support doctors but do not support incompetent physicians who injure and kill innocent patients. Unfortunately in Texas the TEXAS STATE BOARD OF MEDICAL EXAMINERS has a less than stellar track record of suspending grossly incompetent physicians. This must change!

    Anatomy of a Tragedy
    In late 2010, Dr. Christopher Duntsch came to Dallas to start a neurosurgery practice. By the time the Texas Medical Board revoked his license in June 2013, Duntsch had left two patients dead and four paralyzed in a series of botched surgeries. Physicians who complained about Duntsch to the Texas Medical Board and to the hospitals he worked at described his practice in superlative terms. They used phrases like “the worst surgeon I’ve ever seen.” One doctor I spoke with, brought in to repair one of Duntsch’s spinal fusion cases, remarked that it seemed Duntsch had learned everything perfectly just so he could do the opposite. Another doctor compared Duntsch to Hannibal Lecter three times in eight minutes.
    Saul Elbein, Texas Observer 08/29/2013
    Read Article: Texas Observer
  • A Baltimore Circuit Court judge ruled Monday that a lawsuit can go forward against Morgan State University that contends the school failed to protect Joshua Ceasar, who was brutally beaten last year by an electrical engineering student who previously showed signs of violence and mental instability. The student, Alexander Kinyua, 22, was later accused of murder and cannibalism in the death of a family friend.  Judge Videtta A. Brown found that there was potential for “foreseeability” on the part of the school that “something bad was going to happen,” said Steven D. Silverman, Caesar’s attorney.

  • Medical Boards Discipline Physicians for Online Behavior

    Medical licensing boards are beginning to see complaints about unprofessional online behavior by physicians, and many of these complaints resulted in serious disciplinary actions, including license revocation, according to a research letter published in the March 21 issue of JAMA. Dr. Ryan Greysen, MD, Division of Hospital Medicine at The University of California, San Francisco, and his colleagues report that 48 of the 68 executive directors of medical licensing boards responded to the study survey. Of those 48 Medical Ethics Boards who responded, 44 (98%) indicated receiving at least 1 complaint about an online professional breach. The most common complaints reported inappropriate communication with a patient, such as sexual misconduct, which was reported to 33 of the 48 boards who responded.

    “We’ve just found a new way to violate our own standards,” Jason Jent, PhD, assistant professor of clinical pediatrics, Division of Clinical Psychology, Department of Pediatrics, University of Miami Miller School of Medicine, Florida, said to Medscape Medical News. Dr. Jent, who has published about physician online behavior, has no association with the JAMA letter. “Some of the violations we’ve seen in face-to-face communication, or over the phone, or by mail have now extended to online behavior. This is something we have to pay attention to,” he added. The study authors say much the same: “Furthermore, these violations also may be important online manifestations of serious and common violations offline, including substance abuse, sexual misconduct, and abuse of prescription privileges.”  Dr. Jent said that these violations may actually be underreported. “People come across these, and it’s so new they’re not sure they should report it,” he said. “Or, on the flip side, are we seeing an increasing prevalence of online professional violations that may call for more specific training for online behaviors?”

  • DALLAS (AP) — Two women subjected to body cavity searches along a highway have settled their civil rights lawsuit against the Texas Department of Public Safety.The Dallas Morning News reports the $185,000 settlement was finalized Tuesday. A DPS statement Wednesday says an agreement was reached by all parties and the litigation has been settled.Last July’s search of 38-year-old Angel Dobbs and her 24-year-old niece, Ashley Dobbs, by a female trooper was captured by patrol car video. Trooper Kelly Helleson allegedly used the same glove for both body searches. No drugs were found.Helleson, who was later fired, faces two counts of sexual assault and two counts of official oppression.

  • Please be advised my new office address in Lakeway is now open:

    Law Offices of Kevin R. Madison

    The Executive Suites at Flintrock, Suite 257

    2802 Flintrock Trace

    Austin, TX 78738

    My cell number, office number, fax number, and email remain the same.

    We also have an satellite offices for client appointments in: Lakeway, downtown Austin, downtown Dallas

    and surrounding metro area, Irving, Fort Worth, Frisco, Arlington, San Antonio, and Houston. All satellite

    office meetings by appointment only.

    Thanks, Kevin

    Tel:  (512) 708-1650

    Cell: (512) 784-5237

    Fax: (512) 708-1654

    email: kevin@kevinmadison.com

    www.kevinmadison.com

    Practice limited to the representation of

    Crime Victims, Personal Injury Victims,

    Victims of Sexual Harassment, &

    Victims of Sexual Exploitation & Abuse

    www.texassexualharassmentattorney.com

    Highest Rating for Ethics & Competence Awarded

    “AV-Preeminent” rating by Martindale-Hubbell Legal Directory

  • California – U.S. judge says victims’ bodies can prevent rape

    A Southern California judge is being publicly admonished for saying a rape victim “didn’t put up a fight” during her assault and that if someone doesn’t want sexual intercourse, the body “will not permit that to happen. The California Commission on Judicial Performance voted 10-0 to impose a public admonishment Thursday, saying Superior Court Judge Derek Johnson’s comments were inappropriate and a breach of judicial ethics.  See entire news article by clicking on USA hyperlink below:

    http://www.usatoday.com/story/news/nation/2012/12/13/judge-women-rape-victims/1768673/

  • Mr. Nick Hoelscher
    Office of Policy Development Counsel
    Telephone: (512) 322-4316
    Fax: (512) 475-1843
    Email: nick.hoelscher@tdi.state.tx.us

    Here is a sample email that I drafted, so you don’t even have to write your own:

    )))))))))))))))))))))))))))))))))))))))))))))))))))))))))))))))))))))))))))))))))))))))))))))))))))))))))))))))

    Mr. Nick Hoelscher
    Office of Policy Development Counsel
    Telephone: (512) 322-4316
    Fax: (512) 475-1843
    Email: nick.hoelscher@tdi.state.tx.us

                     Re: Rule to prohibit pre-dispute mandatory binding arbitration provisions in personal lines insurance products

    Dear Mr. Hoelscher,

    I am a resident of Texas and as an insured who carries, auto, life, and medical insurance policies I want to go on record that I SUPPORT THE Rule to prohibit pre-dispute mandatory binding arbitration provisions in personal lines insurance products.

    Yours truly,

  • Texas Department of Insurance is considering a prohibition that would forbid Texas insurance companies from using MANDATORY ARBITRATION CLAUSES THAT WOULD NOT ALLOW YOU TO BRING A LAWSUIT AGAINST YOUR OWN INSURANCE CARRIER IF THEY VIOLATE TEXAS LAW OR INSURANCE CODE. PLEASE CONTACT THE TEXAS DEPARTMENT OF INSURANCE AND TELL THEM YOU THAT YOU SUPPORT A PROHIBITION AGAINST MANDATORY ARBITRATION BY INSURANCE COMPANIES IN TEXAS 

    It would not be a good thing for Texas Insurance Companies to force consumers to BINDING ARBITRATION. If this prohibition against arbitration is not passed and insurance companies are allowed to use BINDING ARBITRATION CLAUSES IN ALL INSURANCE POLICIES – if you get in a dispute with your HEALTH, AUTO, LIFE, and HOMEOWNERS INSURANCE you will be forced to go to binding arbitration and you WILL LOSE THE RIGHT TO HAVE A JUDGE OR JURY DETERMINE WHETHER YOUR RIGHTS WERE VIOLATED BY YOUR INSURANCE COMPANY AND IF THEY WERE TO DETERMINE YOUR LOSSES AND DAMAGES.

    TDI Press Release:

    Request for Informal Comments

    Relating to the Development of a Rule

    to Prohibit Pre-dispute Mandatory Binding Arbitration.

    Informal Comments Requested by Friday, November 16, 2012.

    The Texas Department of Insurance is considering a rule to prohibit pre-dispute mandatory binding arbitration provisions in insurance products. The basis of the proposed prohibition is that pre-dispute mandatory binding arbitration precludes covered persons from exercising substantive rights provided by the Insurance Code, including Chapters 541 and 542. The rule would apply to policy-or-contract coverages for individuals for personal noncommercial use. The prohibition would apply to group or individual forms providing coverage in life, accident and health, annuity, credit, and property and casualty products, including home and auto. The department invites your comments concerning substantive rights provided by statute and the protection of those rights. The information received will assist the department’s development of the rule. This is an informal posting and not a publication for rulemaking. To expedite the process, please submit comments electronically via email to the address below by 5:00 p.m. on Friday, November 16, 2012.

    Thank you for your interest and assistance in this process. Please contact the individual listed below if you have any questions:

    Nick Hoelscher

    Office of Policy Development Counsel

    Telephone: (512) 322-4316

    Fax: (512) 475-1843

  • AUSTIN — Austin police are partnering with local non-profits to fight an expected rise in human trafficking during Formula 1 weekend. It’s a crime that grows anytime Austin has an influx of visitors. Restore a Voice is among a network of groups working together to solve the issue and provide help to the people who are rescued from slavery during F1 weekend.  “They will come to our clubs, and they will enjoy our downtown district as they should. There will be a lot of partying going on, but they want more than that. There are many people who come for the seedy side of the sporting event,” said founder of Restore a Voice Larry Megason.  Restore a Voice is establishing shelters for the people APD rescues during race week, and plans to offer them food, medical, care and counseling.  “And provide a home for them where they can experience the freedom and dignity,” said Megason.

    The Austin Police Department is unsure how many trafficking victims they will rescue during F1, but the department is preparing for a busy week.  “It could be one victim. It could be 200,” said APD Victim Services Supervisor Dolores Laparte-Litton.  Human trafficking is also known as modern day slavery, underage prostitution and sexual exploitation. Four out of five victims are U.S. citizens. Up to 300,000 girls between 11 and 17 are lured into the sex industry every single year, according to the U.S. Department of Justice.

    “Traffickers regularly beat them into submission, and generally there is a process of breaking down an individual’s will,” said advocate John Nehme.  Nehme is creating a documentary called, “Trade in Hope that shares the story of women who were trapped in slavery and how volunteers are helping them overcome their past. Sex trafficking was a huge problem at the Super Bowl in Dallas in 2011. Texas Attorney General Greg Abbott called it the single largest human trafficking event in the United States

  • Report: Decade-Long Review Shows Texas Supreme Court Is Activist, Ideological

    Court Watch—January 26th, 2012
    The Texas Supreme Court has a long history of favoring corporate defendants over families and small businesses, according to a decade-long review of the Court’s decision making by Court Watch, a project of the non-profit Texas Watch Foundation.

    Court Watch reviewed the 624 cases involving consumers decided by the Court between 2000 and 2010. The report, “Thumbs on the Scale: A Retrospective of the Texas Supreme Court, 2000-2010,” finds that the state’s high court for civil matters “has marched in lock-step to consistently and overwhelmingly reward corporate defendants and the government at the expense of Texas families.”

    “The Texas Supreme Court is an activist, results-oriented body that over the last 10 years has developed into a safe haven for corporate defendants at the expense of individuals, families, and small business owners,” said Alex Winslow, director of Court Watch. “The statistics speak for themselves. The court’s pro-defendant ideology can not be disputed.”

    Among the report’s findings are:

      • Corporate and government defendants prevail in an average of 74% of cases annually.
    • Consumers have lost 79% of cases in which they were pitted against a corporate or government defendant.

    These findings lead Court Watch to conclude: “The Texas Supreme Court has become a reliable friend to those who seek to escape the consequences of their actions; its justices are the ultimate guardians for the moneyed and powerful who wish to shirk responsibility.”

    The report focuses on the decade beginning in 2000 because it reflects a paradigm shift. In 2000, Rick Perry became governor. His appointees to the Court have taken it in a decidedly activist and ideological turn.

    • Justices appointed to the Court by Governor Rick Perry have sided with consumers an average of just 29% of the time.

    Despite a constitutional provision limiting its jurisdiction to questions of law – not fact – the Court has routinely overturned decisions made by local juries. Even Chief Justice Wallace Jefferson admonished the Court in a 2004 dissenting opinion, writing: “This Court is constitutionally bound to conduct only a legal – not factual – sufficiency review.”

    • Texas Supreme Court has overturned local jury decisions in consumer cases an average of 74% of the time since 2004.

    Court Watch writes that “The jury is our smallest, most direct, and least corrupted form of government. … However, the Texas Supreme Court has displayed a fundamental disregard for juries.”

    Court Watch has been monitoring and reporting on the Texas Supreme Court and the impact its decisions have on Texas families since 1996. During that time, Court Watch has issued an annual list of the most anti-consumer cases of a given year. In keeping with that tradition, this report includes a “Dirty Dozen of the Decade,” a representative sampling of the most dangerous, far-reaching decisions made by the Texas Supreme Court during the last decade.