GranuFlo and NaturaLyte are brand names of dialysates manufactured by Fresenius Medical Care - the world's largest provider of kidney dialysis services and products - and used in thousands of dialysis centers to treat Americans with kidney disease or failure. However, after investigating the harmful effects of these products, the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) issued a Class I recall of GranuFlo and NaturaLyte on March 29, 2012, to revise prescribing instructions. According to the recall, use of these two products can lead to low blood pressure and cardiac arrhythmia. These conditions "may culminate in cardiopulmonary arrest" or other conditions, including death.
Evidence surfaced that Fresenius was aware of the dangers of these drugs and did not share this information with health care providers or consumers. An internal company memo from Nov. 4, 2011, reported that more than 900 patients had experienced heart attacks in Fresenius clinics during the previous year. The memo states that the company's medical staff reached the conclusion that patients with excessive levels of bicarbonate in their blood were six times more likely to have cardiac arrest than those with normal levels. The memo also linked GranuFlo use to increased bicarbonate levels and heart attacks.
These lawsuits claim GranuFlo and NaturaLyte caused severe, permanent injuries and damages including:
People take Lipitor with the hope of supporting a healthy lifestyle and not with the idea of developing diabetes. But according to a 2012 warning by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA), some cholesterol-reducing statins, including Lipitor, may increase the risks of elevated blood sugar levels and developing type-2 diabetes. The FDA ordered Pfizer, the maker of Lipitor, to add warnings about diabetes risks to Lipitor's labels.
The warning came too late for people who suffered serious side effects from Lipitor, also known as atorvastatin calcium. Some of them filed lawsuits against Pfizer because of their injuries. More lawsuits are expected, perhaps enough to warrant the creation of federal Multidistrict Litigation (MDL) to handle Lipitor personal injury claims.
Return to top of page...
In some cases, filing a lawsuit is the only way to recoup money lost from hospital expenses, lost wages and, in the worst cases, funeral costs. Some people file Pradaxa lawsuits because they don't want other families to suffer the way they have.
Walter Daumler of Wisconsin watched his sister, Doris, bleed to death because of Pradaxa. Daumler told The New York Times that doctors told him there was nothing they could do because there is no antidote for the hemorrhaging caused by the blood thinner. Daumler said, "My No. 1 goal is to stop this insidious drug [and] to get this off the market, so others will not undergo or witness what I saw."
People injured by Pradaxa allege drugmaker Boehringer Ingelheim willfully endangered the public through its use of deceptive marketing practices, failure to disclose risks and failure to provide adequate treatment methods for patients who experience severe bleeding events. Plaintiffs are also troubled by the fact Boehringer released the drug without an antidote.
In a statement released in February 2014, the company maintained: "We are certain that we can show in the legal cases that we have worked very carefully and responsibly in research, development and marketing of Pradaxa."
Return to top of page...
Because Reglan has been shown to cause tardive dyskinesia, there have been more than 5,000 tardive dyskinesia lawsuits filed against multiple drug companies that market Reglan or a generic version of the drug. Despite the high volume of cases, the lawsuits were not consolidated into multidistrict litigation (MDL) because of the large number of defendant companies.
According to complaints filed in federal court, the defendant drug companies are accused of negligence, fraud and deceptive marketing practices. According to the plaintiffs, the defendant companies failed to adequately warn patients and doctors and published misleading information about the risk of developing neurological disorders when using Reglan.
Tardive dyskinesia lawsuits also allege drug companies failed to:
Ensure that Reglan/metoclopramide warnings were accurate.
Adequately warn patients and doctors about the dangers of inappropriate long-term use of Reglan/metoclopramide.
Report all information about the risks of the drug to the FDA.
Engage in proper testing and research practices of the risks of long-term and short-term Reglan/metoclopramide use.
Plaintiffs say that because of the negligence of drug companies, they suffered permanent neurologic damage - including tardive dyskinesia and other nervous system disorders - disfigurement and aggravation of preexisting conditions. The injured people who filed lawsuits demanded compensation for medical expenses, lost wages and earning capacity, and loss of quality of life. The plaintiffs also demanded punitive damages.
To date, companies have paid millions in compensation to those suffering from tardive dyskinesia after taking Reglan/metoclopramide.
Return to top of page...
Topamax is prescribed for epileptic seizures and migraines because it works to decrease abnormal nerve cell activity. It is also frequently prescribed with other medications to treat Lennox-Gastaut syndrome, a form of childhood-onset epilepsy that causes seizures and developmental delays.
Topamax has also been linked to serious birth defects, including:
Cleft lip or palate (which can lead to ear infections and difficultly eating or talking)
Hypospadias (a penile defect in male infants)
These injuries may require surgery and other costly medical treatment, but assistance with medical and other expenses may be available. These injuries could have been prevented if the drugmaker had not neglected its legal duty to warn about risks. That is why parents of children who have been injured by the drug may be entitled to compensation.
Using Topamax during the first trimester of pregnancy, when women may not realize they are pregnant, raises the risk of birth defects. Since Topamax may decrease the effectiveness of contraceptives, it is crucial that women of childbearing age and their doctors be warned about the risks. The basis of Topamax legal claims is that Janssen Pharmaceuticals had a legal duty to warn them and failed to do so.
With information about drug risks, women and health care providers can consider other health care options like different epilepsy or migraine treatments. By not warning them about the drug's dangers, Janssen Pharmaceuticals deprived them of this choice. The company failed to issue adequate warnings despite evidence of increased birth defect risks that was available by at least 2008. For this reason, parents whose children have been injured by Topamax have decided to hold the drugmaker liable.
This is not the first time Ortho-McNeil (now Janssen Pharmaceuticals, owned by Johnson & Johnson) has faced legal trouble over its marketing of Topamax. A study disclosing increased birth defect risks was published in the Neurology medical journal in July 2008. By that time, Topamax's U.S. sales had already topped $10 billion. Ortho-McNeil was also promoting Topamax for unapproved uses such as treatment of bipolar disorder and alcohol dependency. Its marketing efforts included a "Doctor for a Day" program, which enlisted doctors to join sales representatives and talk to other doctors about "off-label" Topamax uses.
In 2010, Ortho-McNeil pleaded guilty to illegally promoting Topamax and agreed to pay a $6.14 million fine. That year, its affiliate, Ortho-McNeil-Janssen Pharmaceuticals, also agreed to pay $75.37 million to resolve similar allegations under the federal False Claims Act.
Return to top of page...
Approved in 2011, Xarelto (rivaroxaban) is one of the newest blood thinners on the market and is manufactured by Bayer and marketed by Johnson & Johnson's subsidiary, Janssen Pharmaceuticals, in the United States. The most dangerous side effect for people taking Xarelto is uncontrollable bleeding - a risk shared by all blood thinners. Some of the country's top heart doctors are concerned about Xarelto's safety.
Financial hardship caused by emergency visits, ongoing care, and lost wages.
Emotional distress from caring for loved ones suffering medical problems
The burden of funeral expenses because of uncontrolled bleeding caused by Xarelto.
Holding Bayer and Janssen Pharmaceuticals accountable for releasing a dangerous drug.
The lawsuits stem from the serious number of heart and blood disorders experienced by Yaz users. Plaintiffs - former users of Yaz and Yasmin and their families - are bolstered in part with the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) rulings that Bayer trumped up some of the drugs' uses in marketing and advertising campaigns and downplayed their side effects. The number of lawsuits grew to the point that multidistrict legislation (MDL) is now in place to handle all of the related claims.
In December 2008, an FDA panel voted in favor of strengthening warnings on YAZ birth control pill labels. The FDA's most serious label, the black-box warning, appears on all Yaz and Yasmin packaging. It cautions women who smoke about an increased risk of serious cardiovascular side effects that may occur if they use either drug.
If you experienced a life-changing side effect after taking Yaz, Yasmin or Ocella, you may be entitled to compensation for medical expenses, pain and suffering.
Return to top of page...
Pfizer introduced the prescription drug Zoloft (sertraline chloride) to the market in 1991. Thanks in part to its popular animated bouncing ball ads, Zoloft became one of the most widely prescribed antidepressants in the United States. In recent years, however, the prescription drug has been linked to dangerous birth defects.
More than 250 Zoloft birth defect lawsuits are pending in federal court in Philadelphia, and it is possible that the number will continue to grow.
Lawsuits accuse the multibillion-dollar drug company of promoting the drug to pregnant women even though Zoloft is linked to birth defects such as holes in the heart, cleft palate, club feet, spina bifida, skull defects and persistent pulmonary hypertension of the newborn (PPHN).
A few of these birth defects can be fatal, and children who survive are forced to spend much of their lives in and out of doctors' offices to monitor their health. Some of these children suffer with these defects into adulthood. If you or a loved one took Zoloft during pregnancy and had a child born with a birth defect, you may be able to file a lawsuit against Pfizer.
Return to top of page...
When someone dies due to the fault of another person or entity (like a car manufacturer), the survivors may be able to bring a wrongful death lawsuit. Such a lawsuit seeks compensation for the survivors' loss, such as lost wages from the deceased, lost companionship, and funeral expenses. Here's a primer on wrongful death claims -- what they are, who can sue, who can be sued, and what damages may be recovered.
DWI (driving while intoxicated) and DUI (driving under the influence) is commonly called "drunk driving." It refers to operating a motor vehicle while one's blood alcohol content is above the legal limit set by statute, which supposedly is the level at which a person cannot drive safely. State statutes vary as to what that level is, but it ranges from .08 to .10. Driving on private property such as a parking lot is no defense, but sitting in a non-moving vehicle without the ignition on probably is (sometimes resulting in a charge of "drunk in and about a vehicle"). This is a misdemeanor and is variously referred to as DUI, driving while intoxicated (DWI), drunk driving, or a "deuce".
Return to top of page...
Forcible rape and Sodomy are sexual offenses that have been widely recognized since the beginning of American Common Law. Rape was defined as an act of forcible sexual intercourse with a female other than the perpetrator's wife. Modern legislation in the United States has expanded that definition to include the act of forcible sexual intercourse with any person, even the spouse of the actor. The offense of rape combines the crime of assault (fear of imminent bodily harm) with the elements of fornication (sexual intercourse between two unmarried persons) or Adultery (sexual intercourse with someone other than the actor's spouse).
Sodomy is defined as anal intercourse but is often used in the law as a generic classification including bestiality (sexual intercourse with an animal) and fellatio and cunnilingus (two forms of oral sex). These forms of sexual conduct were outlawed because widely accepted religious beliefs and moral principles dictate that they are unnatural forms of sexual activity, often called "crimes against nature." Forcible rape and sodomy are generally perceived as similarly grave offenses.
Most state criminal statutes require some physical penetration in order to consummate the crime of rape or sodomy, but many statutes have a low threshold for demonstrating penetration, calling only for a showing of "some penetration, however slight." Completion of the sex act as evidenced by orgasm, ejaculation, or achievement of sexual gratification, however, is not required to prove a rape or sodomy case.
Most forcible sex offense statutes do require some forcible compulsion to submit and earnest resistance. However, courts will consider the circumstances of the attack, including the characteristics of the perpetrator and the victim, the presence of a weapon, threats of harm, and the assault itself, in assessing the victim's resistance. Statutes do not require victims to resist if to do so would be futile or dangerous.
Although modern statutes have eliminated the marital rape exception, some states still have some form of restrictions in the prosecution of the crime of marital rape. For example, some states will only prosecute marital rape claims if the couple is legally separated or have filed for Divorce. However, due to legal criticism and growing public awareness of spousal abuse, the trend in the United States is toward the elimination of all exceptions to the prosecution of these crimes.
In the 1990s, the public became more aware of issues involving violence in the home among family members. Many studies showed that women are far more likely to be victims of violence at the hand of a husband or boyfriend than by a stranger. Victims of Domestic Violence or rape are believed to be reluctant to report these crimes for fear of continued or retaliatory violence. In response to these issues, Congress enacted the Violent Crime Control and Law Enforcement Act of 1994 (42 U.S.C.A. §§ 3796dd et seq.). One part of that act is the section entitled the Safe Homes for Women Act of 1994 (18 U.S.C.A. §§ 2261 et seq.). This section created new federal crimes and penalties for domestic violence.
Non-Forcible Sex Offenses
Non-forcible sex offenses include sexual conduct with individuals that the law assumes are not capable of giving consent to sexual acts. Because of this legal principle, it is said that in non-forcible sex offense cases, lack of consent by the victim may be a Matter of Law. In other words, statutes will assume that underage, physically helpless, and mentally incompetent victims are incapable of giving consent to sexual acts and will not consider consent as a valid defense to the crime.
The age at which criminal statutes acknowledge that an individual is capable of consenting to sexual acts varies by state. Most jurisdictions have special statutes for sex offenses committed with an underage victim, usually termed Statutory Rape laws. In some states non-forcible sexual acts with an underage individual are considered as serious as forcible sexual acts. In other states forcible sexual acts are deemed more serious and are punished more severely. Where the offense is committed forcibly with an underage individual, the more serious statute and punishments will apply. It does not matter if the perpetrator reasonably believed that the victim was of the age of consent because Mistake of Fact is no defense in a statutory rape case.
The law also considers physically helpless and mentally disabled victims to be incapable of giving consent to sexual acts. Physically helpless individuals include those who are unconscious, paralyzed, restrained, or otherwise incapable of resisting the sexual acts. Mentally disabled victims may include those who are permanently mentally disabled or those who are drugged and in a temporary state of mental disability. Some state statutes even include involuntarily intoxicated individuals in the category of temporarily mentally disabled victims. Although mistake of fact is no defense for sexual offenses with a minor, it is a defense for a physically helpless or mentally disabled adult victim if the perpetrator can show that he reasonably believed that the victim was not physically helpless or mentally disabled.
Fornication and Adultery Fornication (sexual intercourse between two unmarried persons) and adultery (sexual intercourse with someone other than one's spouse) are non-forcible sex offenses that have been recognized since early American common law. These acts are still unlawful under some state statutes. Fornication, however, has been eliminated as a criminal offense in most jurisdictions as a result of a more liberal view of the role of public law in mandating moral principles. However, neither fornication nor adultery is prosecuted with much regularity. The requirements of penetration that must be proved in other sexual offenses involving sexual intercourse also must be proved for fornication and adultery.
Consensual Sodomy Consensual sodomy statutes outlaw the act of sodomy even when it is consensual, meaning that it is accomplished without the use of force. The view supporting these statutes, which still exist in a minority of states, is that sodomy is an unnatural act, and when the act is consensual, all participants are guilty of wrongdoing. However, since the 1980s, most state courts have overturned consensual sodomy laws, calling them unconstitutional prohibitions of sexual conduct between two consenting adults.
Return to top of page...
Fraud is the intentional use of deceit, a trick or some dishonest means to deprive another of his/her/its money, property or a legal right. A party who has lost something due to fraud is entitled to file a lawsuit for damages against the party acting fraudulently, and the damages may include punitive damages as a punishment or public example due to the malicious nature of the fraud. Quite often there are several persons involved in a scheme to commit fraud and each and all may be liable for the total damages. Inherent in fraud is an unjust advantage over another which injures that person or entity. It includes failing to point out a known mistake in a contract or other writing (such as a deed), or not revealing a fact which he/she has a duty to communicate, such as a survey which shows there are only 10 acres of land being purchased and not 20 as originally understood. Constructive fraud can be proved by a showing of breach of legal duty (like using the trust funds held for another in an investment in one's own business) without direct proof of fraud or fraudulent intent. Extrinsic fraud occurs when deceit is employed to keep someone from exercising a right, such as a fair trial, by hiding evidence or misleading the opposing party in a lawsuit.
Legally, theft is often synonymous with larceny. Again, the definitions vary from state to state and jurisdictions. Consider contacting a legal advisor or a police officer in your area if you would like to learn more about the legal definitions in your jurisdiction.
Theft, larceny and loss of personal property may not be covered under certain insurance policies. Be sure to read your policy carefully.
Money laundering is the process in which the proceeds of crime are transformed into ostensibly legitimate money or other assets. However, in a number of legal and regulatory systems the term money laundering has become conflated with other forms of financial crime, and sometimes used more generally to include misuse of the financial system (involving things such as securities, digital currencies, credit cards, and traditional currency), including terrorism financing, tax evasion and evading of international sanctions. Most anti-money laundering laws openly conflate money laundering (which is concerned with source of funds) with terrorism financing (which is concerned with destination of funds) when regulating the financial system.
Money obtained from certain crimes, such as extortion, insider trading, drug trafficking, illegal gambling and tax evasion is "dirty". It needs to be cleaned to appear to have derived from non-criminal activities so that banks and other financial institutions will deal with it without suspicion. Money can be laundered by many methods, which vary in complexity and sophistication. Return to top of page...
Marijuana, commonly called "pot," is a controlled substance under Texas law. The possession, distribution or use of this substance is illegal, and the consequences for being caught can be severe. Not only are you facing potential treatment programs and jail time, but also issues with employment, financing and housing.
We provide aggressive defense of all potential marijuana charges that may arise in state or federal courts in Texas, including:
Possession of marijuana paraphernalia
Marijuana trafficking or distribution
Maintenance of or presence in a marijuana grow house
Whether you are facing state or federal drug charges, you can rest assured that our criminal defense lawyers will thoroughly investigate your charges and attack the prosecution's case on all levels. If we cannot obtain a plea bargain from the prosecution, we will fight for your rights and your future in court.
Search and Seizure Concerns in Marijuana Possession Cases
One of the most common areas of attack in marijuana possession cases is the search and seizure techniques followed by the police. We will analyze the search and seizure that took place in your situation to determine if the police followed all required procedures. Any misstep, such as lack of cause for search or improper chain of custody once the marijuana was seized, can be grounds for dismissal of all charges.
Meth, short for methamphetamines, goes by many names, including speed or crystal meth. In recent years, Texas law enforcement officials have been cracking down on meth-related crimes in an effort to clean up the streets and lessen the number of people addicted to the drug. Unfortunately, these efforts have also violated the rights of numerous people.
It is not uncommon to find meth labs sprinkled throughout the neighborhoods of Dallas, Fort Worth and the surrounding areas. As meth is easy to make out of mainly household items, people looking for quick money may find themselves creating meth labs in their own homes.
In addition to meth lab crimes, we also defend clients facing a variety of other meth charges, including:
Meth sale, distribution or trafficking
Prescription Drug Charges
From pain killers to anti-depressants, people misuse and abuse prescriptions on a daily basis. Examples of such misuse or abuse include stealing another person's prescription, or selling or distributing your own prescriptions. With state and federal law enforcement cracking down on such action, it is important that you seek out experienced legal help as soon as you are charged with any prescription drug crime.
At our firm, we firmly believe in the innocence of our clients. We always put forth every effort and resource available to analyze, investigate and defend prescription drug cases involving charges such as:
Illegally obtaining a prescription
Illegal prescription drug possession
Distributing prescription drugs
These charges can involve any controlled substance, although we commonly see cases with the following prescription drugs:
Robbery is the taking or attempting to take something of value from another person by use of force, threats or intimidation. It is committed in the presence of the victim. Robbery is commonly known as a "holdup" or a "stickup" (i.e. bank robbery or mugging).
Robbery is usually divided into different 'degrees'. The degrees vary by state and can also depend on whether a weapon or something that appears to be a weapon was present and/or if an accomplice was present. Any degree of robbery is considered a felony by law.
You might also hear the term 'aggravated robbery'. If a suspect makes a victim believe that he has a deadly weapon by showing a weapon, saying he has a weapon or displaying something that appears to be a weapon, it is aggravated robbery.
Again, the definitions and degrees of robbery vary from state to state. Consider contacting a legal advisor or a police officer in your area if you would like to learn more about the legal definitions in your jurisdiction.
Burglary is the unlawful entry of a 'structure' to commit a felony or a theft. Burglary is commonly known as a "break in," or, "breaking and entering." A 'structure' is usually in reference to physical buildings but not cars. Car break-ins or thefts are considered larcenies.
Burglary does not necessarily translate to damage. It is still considered burglary if someone enters through an unlocked door or window with the intent to commit a felony or theft. This is called 'non-forcible entry'.
'Forcible entry' is when windows and doors are broken or forced; screens, walls or roofs are broken; tools are used; locks are picked, etc. You might also hear about 'attempted forcible entry,' which is when a burglar attempts to enter but is frightened off.
Again, the definitions of burglary vary from state to state. Consider contacting a legal advisor or a police officer in your area if you would like to learn more about the legal definitions in your jurisdiction.
Domestic violence (also domestic abuse, spousal abuse, battering, family violence and intimate partner violence) is a pattern of behavior which involves violence or other abuse by one person against another in a domestic context, such as in marriage or cohabitation. Intimate partner violence is domestic violence against a spouse or other intimate partner. Domestic violence can take place in heterosexual or same-sex relationships. Domestic violence can take a number of forms including physical, emotional, verbal, economic and sexual abuse, which can range from subtle, coercive forms to marital rape and to violent physical abuse that results in disfigurement or death. Globally, a wife or female partner is more commonly the victim of domestic violence, though the victim can also be the male partner, or both partners may engage in abusive or violent behavior, or the victim may act in self-defense or retaliation.
Domestic violence often occurs because the perpetrator believes that abuse is justified and acceptable, and may produce intergenerational cycles of abuse that condone violence. Awareness, perception, definition and documentation of domestic violence differs widely from country to country. There may be a cycle of abuse during which tensions rise and an act of violence is committed, followed by a period of reconciliation and calm.
Victims of domestic violence may be trapped in domestic violent situations through isolation, power and control, insufficient financial resources, fear, shame or to protect children. As a result of abuse, victims may experience physical disabilities, chronic health problems, mental illness, limited finances, and poor ability to create healthy relationships. Victims may experience post-traumatic stress disorder. Children who live in a household with violence show dysregulated aggression from an early age that may later contribute to continuing the legacy of abuse when they reach adulthood. Domestic violence often happens in the context of forced and child marriage.
Alcohol consumption and mental illness can be co-morbid with abuse, and present additional challenges in eliminating domestic violence. Management of domestic violence may take place through medical services, law enforcement, counseling, and other forms of prevention and intervention.
Return to top of page...
Usually when a probationer does not follow the conditions of probation it amounts to violation of probation. A probation officer may imprison a probationer and petition the court for violation of probation. There will be a court hearing and if a violation is proved, the probationer may be sentenced to jail. The severity of the penalties imposed for the violation may depend upon the facts of the original offense, the facts of the violation, and the probationer's criminal history.
Return to top of page...
Aggravated assault is the crime of physically attacking another person which results in serious bodily harm and/or is committed with a deadly or dangerous weapon such as a gun, knife, sword, ax or blunt instrument. Aggravated assault is usually a felony punishable by a term in state prison. It may involve, among other things, assault with intent to rape, maim or murder.
The following is an example of a state statute dealing with aggravated assault:
"A person is guilty of aggravated assault if he:
attempts to cause serious bodily injury to another, or causes such injury intentionally, knowingly or recklessly under circumstances manifesting extreme indifference to the value of human life;
attempts to cause or intentionally, knowingly or recklessly causes serious bodily injury to any of the officers, agents, employees or other persons enumerated in subsection (c) or to an employee of an agency, company or other entity engaged in public transportation, while in the performance of duty;
attempts to cause or intentionally or knowingly causes bodily injury to a any of the officers, agents, employees or other persons enumerated in subsection (c), in the performance of duty;
attempts to cause or intentionally or knowingly causes bodily injury to another with a deadly weapon; or
attempts to cause or intentionally or knowingly causes bodily injury to a teaching staff member, school board member, or other employee, including a student employee, of any elementary or secondary publicly-funded educational institution, any elementary or secondary private school licensed by the Department of Education or any elementary or secondary parochial school while acting in the scope of his or her employment or because of his or her employment relationship to the school.
attempts by physical menace to put any of the officers, agents, employees or other persons enumerated in subsection (c), while in the performance of duty, in fear of imminent serious bodily injury."
Return to top of page...
A person commits the crime of murder if with intent to cause the death of another person, he causes the death of that person or of another person,or under circumstances manifesting extreme indifference to human life, he recklessly engages in conduct which creates a grave risk of death to a person other than himself, and thereby causes the death of another person. Murder may also be committed when a person commits or attempts to commit arson, burglary, escape, kidnapping, rape, robbery, sodomy or any other felony clearly dangerous to human life and, in the course of and in furtherance of the crime that he is committing or attempting to commit, or in immediate flight therefrom, he, or another participant if there is any, causes the death of any person.
Involuntary manslaughter means unintentional manslaughter. If a person commits the crime of manslaughter without any malice or intention is charged with involuntary manslaughter. It may be committed with criminal negligence or during the commission of a crime not included within the felony-murder rule. It is also called manslaughter in the second degree. All manslaughters that does not come under voluntary manslaughter are involuntary manslaughters.
Return to top of page...
Upon the petition of a criminal defendant, a court can direct certain law enforcement agencies to destroy all records associated with an arrest and subsequent prosecution. Many times the court will specifically direct law enforcement agencies to destroy jail records, police reports, prosecution reports and court files. In addition, a successful expungement petitioner, can legally deny ever having been arrested for or charged with the criminal offense for which he is receiving the expunction. An individual convicted of an offense under Section 161.252 may apply to the court to have the conviction expunged. If the court finds that the individual satisfactorily completed the tobacco awareness program or tobacco-related community service ordered by the court, the court shall order the conviction and any complaint, verdict, sentence, or other document relating to the offense to be expunged from the individual's record and the conviction may not be shown or made known for any purpose.
Return to top of page...
A non-disclosure agreement (NDA), also known as a confidentiality agreement (CA), confidential disclosure agreement (CDA), proprietary information agreement (PIA), or secrecy agreement (SA), is a legal contract between at least two parties that outlines confidential material, knowledge, or information that the parties wish to share with one another for certain purposes, but wish to restrict access to or by third parties. It is a contract through which the parties agree not to disclose information covered by the agreement. An NDA creates a confidential relationship between the parties to protect any type of confidential and proprietary information or trade secrets. As such, an NDA protects nonpublic business information.
NDAs are commonly signed when two companies, individuals, or other entities (such as partnerships, societies, etc.) are considering doing business and need to understand the processes used in each other's business for the purpose of evaluating the potential business relationship. NDAs can be "mutual", meaning both parties are restricted in their use of the materials provided, or they can restrict the use of material by a single party.
It is also possible for an employee to sign an NDA or NDA-like agreement with an employer. In fact, some employment agreements will include a clause restricting employees' use and dissemination of company-owned confidential information.
Return to top of page...