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Doctor fatigue: Understanding the risks

When you need medical treatment, the last thing you want is a doctor who is too fatigued to give you a high level of care. This can lead to serious and often life-altering mistakes.

Unfortunately, that's the reality for a lot of patients. It's critical that you understand the risks. Here are a few key points to keep in mind:

  • Sleep deprivation can contribute to fatigue, but they're not necessarily the same thing since outside factors can impact fatigue levels.
  • Some of those outside factors include having a lot of stress, having an excessive workload and seeing disruptions to your circadian rhythm.
  • Fatigue causes more changes to the doctor's performance than sleep loss alone.
  • While physical performance does deteriorate due to fatigue, the real risk is the decline in cognitive function.
  • Examples of cognitive decline include impaired thought processes, impaired learning abilities, interpersonal dysfunction and memory issues.

Never assume anything about boundary lines

When you bought your house, there was already a fence between your house and the neighbors' house. You just assumed that it marked the property line, and it was clear that your neighbor thought the same thing. You didn't have a survey done and carried on with your life.

Then your neighbor built an addition on their house. You can't help but feel that it's far too close to your own home. It feels intrusive. It is behind the fence, but you never noticed how close that fence was until now.

Paperwork mistakes could lead to a wrongful foreclosure

Imagine getting a foreclosure notice in the mail when you've spent years or even decades faithfully paying off that loan. You know that your payments are up to date. You've never missed one in your life. And now you're worried that you could lose your home and your entire investment anyway.

The reason for the issue could be very simple: mistakes with your paperwork. After all, experts note that "botched documents" are one of the main reasons for wrongful home repossessions.

Taking your business litigation to appellate court

After weeks or months of fighting for your cause in a business litigation, you were disappointed that the court's ruling did not go your way. Perhaps the decision is a devastating financial blow to your business, or it places the future of your company and its intellectual property in jeopardy. Whatever the details, you are wondering what your next step will be.

Depending on the circumstances, you may be able to appeal the verdict. However, it is important to understand the purpose of an appeal in California and the process you must go through for an appellate court to hear your case.

After crash kills six, drunk driver gets 30 years

A woman in California was involved in a deadly accident, in which she was accused of driving under the influence. She recently went to court and was sentenced to 30 years to life in prison.

The woman was heading north on the Orange Freeway, driving a 2013 Chevrolet Camaro, but she was in the southbound lanes. She actually made it off of that freeway without incident, but she then got on the 60 Freeway, heading east in the westbound lanes. It was there that she ran her sports car into a Ford Explorer.

Study claims drunk driving is safer than distracted driving

If you see a drunk driver, you may be tempted to call the police. If you see someone texting and driving, while you may roll your eyes in frustration, you're probably not going to do much. You know it's dangerous, but it does not appear as immediately hazardous as letting an intoxicated people get behind the wheel.

The truth, though, is that it can be even more dangerous. One study found that the decrease in reaction time for someone who was drunk driving was about 12 percent. That's not good, and it can lead to a car accident, but the decline for someone who was driving while distracted was about 35 percent. It's far worse to text and drive, according to these statistics, than it is to drink and drive.

Handshake deals can lead to serious complications

If you're working with people you consider friends, it may be tempting to skip drafting an official contract. You'll just use a handshake deal. After all, you trust each other. If you do ask for a contract, it may even feel awkward and that person may be offended.

As common as this is, you need to know that handshake deals are a serious risk. If things do not go as planned, you can run into some significant complications.

Is a trustee misappropriating your funds?

A parent or grandparent will often set up a trust to provide for you after their passing. The trustee, or person who manages the trust, is most often the executor of the decedent’s estate or another family member. However, it is not uncommon for a trustee to mismanage the trust.

Misappropriation of funds occurs when the trustee uses the funds in a way that the beneficiaries of the trust have not authorized. As countless trustees have discovered, misappropriating funds is illegal and a punishable offense under the law.

4 statistics about failed estate planning

When your estate planning works, your heirs move through the probate process with little conflict. Things go smoothly, arguments are few and far between, and you know that everyone will stay on good terms for years to come.

When it fails, disputes rise up and create a gulf between your heirs. They wind up battling their way through a long, difficult probate process. No one is happy with the outcome. Below are four telling statistics about estate planning disputes:

  1. More than 20 percent of beneficiaries end up fighting over an estate. Even if you think this won't happen to your family, it can.
  2. Under 33 percent of parents talk to their children about estate planning in advance. This may contribute to disputes because children may have unrealistic expectations that do not get met.
  3. When those who did not go through disputes were asked if they knew what to expect up front, 63 percent said that they did.
  4. Of those noted above, a full 80 percent said that they thought the estate planning was done fairly.

Avoid probate by transferring assets early

Although you are not yet elderly, you have wisely decided to begin planning your estate. Everyone needs an estate plan, even if you are young and in good health. One benefit of planning your estate early is that you can take steps to avoid probate.

Probate, or the process of distributing your assets after you die, can be time-consuming and expensive for your surviving loved ones. One way to spare them from this process is to transfer your assets while you are still alive.

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