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5 Tips To Help You Keep Your Pet During A Divorce

Posted by on 7:51 am in Uncategorized | Comments Off on 5 Tips To Help You Keep Your Pet During A Divorce

A divorce is hard enough when it affects just the two of you, but pets can add a new layer of difficulty to the proceedings. The court generally looks at pets as property, which means they are divided up between the two divorcing parties. The following tips can help you increase your chances of keeping your pet. Tip #1: Be Willing to Compromise This may mean giving up something else that by all rights should belong to you, such as a vehicle, house, or other item of relative value and use. Sometimes an ex will fight for a pet simply because they want to use it as a bargaining chip for another item. Tip #2: Work Together Not all divorce distributions have to be decided by the judge. If possible, work with your divorce attorney and your ex to create an equitable distribution of property before the court proceeding. Then, you will only need the judge to approve and finalize it. Your lawyers will act as your mediators, ensuring that you get what you deserve while also keeping the proceedings legal. Tip #3: Get Custody of the Kids There is a precedent of the judge sending the pet with the parent that has primary custody of the children. The reasoning is that the kids will benefit from having their family pet with them during the difficult period following a divorce. Although pets are technically property, judges may also rule in the pet’s best interest so they will avoid separating them from the bulk of the family or the family home to which the pet is accustomed to. Tip #4: Get an ESA An emotional support animal is a therapy pet, which is registered as a medical assistive service animal. If you can get ESA approval from your therapist, the judge is likely to grant you custody of the pet, since it is now a service animal and a prescribed part of your treatment plan. A true ESA animal must be documented and prescribed by a mental health care provider, so make sure you follow this step if you want to use this argument to keep your pet. Tip #5: Show Proof of Care Are you the main caregiver of your pet? If you can prove that you have footed most of the care and monetary responsibilities of the pet, you may be able to get custody. Since a pet is considered property under the law, a proof of purchase in your name can be sufficient for establishing ownership. For more information, contact Kalamarides & Lambert or a similar...

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Shared Or Joint Child Custody: How They Differ

Posted by on 5:17 pm in Uncategorized | Comments Off on Shared Or Joint Child Custody: How They Differ

Child custody issues can be among the most contentious areas when parents divorce. The level of cooperation and respect that a divorcing couple demonstrates for each other can have an tremendous effect on how long your divorce case drags on and how much money gets spent to litigate it. Making a good, fair and workable child custody agreement outside of court can be extremely beneficial; after all, who knows whats best for your child other than you? The terms “joint” and “shared” in regards to child custody may at first appear to be the same thing, but these two forms of custody are actually quite different. It’s important to know the difference, since your divorce agreement will specify the exact type that you both agree to follow, and you should ensure that you are on the same page as the court system. Read on for an explanation of the two types of child custody. Joint Child Custody This custody concept specifies one parent to hold primary physical custody of the child, with major decisions involving the child being made by both parents equally. A stable home environment may be important for younger children, and a generous visitation schedule allows the other parent to spend time with the child. This type of custody is ideal if the parents get along enough to come together and agree on issues related to parenting, such as education, religion, discipline and other major areas of concern. For parents who live in different states, this can be a workable solution for custody placement. Shared Child Custody Time spent with the child is at the center of the concept of shared custody. The percentages of time spent with each parent is sometimes spelled out, but traditionally custody agreements will allow equal time with the child for each parent. While seen as some to be the most “fair” form of custody, it can be an organizational nightmare to carry out. Parents should live in relatively close proximity for shared custody to work. While the child may benefit from being with both parents, having to keep two sets of belongings and dealing with the logistics of after-school activities and social obligations require parents with good organizational skills. Keep in mind that child custody arrangements remain one of the issues that the courts are willing to revisit if necessary. The best interests of the child are at the forefront of the court’s attitude about children, however, not issues about the inconvenience to the parents. Consult with your family law attorney for more information about the child custody arrangements and create a child custody agreement which benefits your...

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Dealing With A Parent Who Doesn’t Pay Child Support

Posted by on 2:17 pm in Uncategorized | Comments Off on Dealing With A Parent Who Doesn’t Pay Child Support

Unfortunately, many single parents have to deal with an ex who refuses to pay child support. If you have been unable to come to a friendly agreement with your child’s other parent, then you may need to start some legal procedures to recover the money you’re owed. Here’s what you need to know about legally collecting child support from an non-supportive partner. How to File a Child Support Dispute There are a few ways that you can start a child support dispute, and a lawyer can help you to navigate each of these options. The first thing to do is to file a report with the same court that mandated your child support order, stating that the other parent is not holding up their end of the agreement. The court may try to mediate the situation first, but if the parent still refuses to pay, you will need to have your lawyer open a child support trial. If you are going the trial route, you’ll need to collect your custody documents and file paperwork with the court office. The court will then send an order to your ex for a mandatory appearance in court, and you can have your lawyer represent you in the trial. Methods to Collect Child Support The government is on your side in helping you collect child support, and they will help collect the money owed in a variety of ways. They may garnish part of the person’s wages; essentially, this means that employers are obligated to report the employee’s earnings directly to the state, who will withhold a portion to send to you. The government can also withhold money from a tax return to help pay back child support. In your child support trial, the judge may also mandate some other options for paying the child support. The court may seize some of the ex’s assets and liquidate them in order to pay you. They may also simply mandate that a lump sum be paid right away, if the person has the means to pay it. While you may feel that these procedures will cause a lot of hard feelings between you and your ex-partner, it’s often the best way to collect child support from someone who claims that they cannot pay. Your lawyer will help you negotiate fair terms with the other party and collect the money in a way that’s both legal and within the other party’s means. For more information, contact a law firm such as Patton Hoversten & Berg...

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What Are Hazing Injuries And Who Is Legally Liable?

Posted by on 3:30 pm in Uncategorized | Comments Off on What Are Hazing Injuries And Who Is Legally Liable?

When you hear the word “hazing”, you might think of college students doing dangerous acts as an initiation into a fraternity or sorority. However, hazing is not limited to just the college years. It can take place in high school, on sports teams, and the military and it is more serious than it is treated by mainstream media and Hollywood. Hazing is typically abusive and degrading behavior a person is forced to participate in to be accepted into a group. The activities required of the person usually puts them in danger of injury and even death. Injuries While most young people may believe that hazing is not a big deal and it is all in fun and games, the simple truth is, hazing is dangerous. Many kids are injured each year from hazing rituals. The severity of the injury depends on the severity of the hazing. One common practice during a hazing initiation is whipping or paddling a pledge, which can leave bruises. However, sometimes these beatings can get out of control and lead to blunt force trauma. These types of injuries can cause organ failure, cracked skulls, and even death. Another hazing injury is burns. These types of injuries are usually a result of branding, shocking or putting out lit cigarettes on the pledge’s skin. These are only the tip of the iceberg for possible injuries incurred through hazing. Others possible injuries are dehydration from being left out in the elements, alcohol poisoning, water intoxication from being forced to drink copious amounts of water, and sexual assault. Who is Liable? If you or your child has been hurt during a hazing incident, you have the legal right to sue for medical costs, pain and suffering, and lost wages. Sometimes the actual school or university is protected from hazing lawsuits, but the club or organization within the school is not. For example, if a pledge receives life-threatening injuries by a small portion of a fraternity, then the people who were directly responsible for the injury can be held liable as well as the entire house. Also, anyone who watched the incident and did not intervene can also be held liable. This is considered a type of negligence and the charges will vary in severity from a misdemeanor to criminal charges, depending on the situation.  Over the years many anti-hazing laws have been passed in an effort to keep people safe. Unfortunately, hazing still continues. If you or anyone you know has been injured during a hazing incident, you should contact a lawyer. On the other hand, if you have been charged because you were negligent during a hazing initiation, then contact a criminal defense...

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Gym Policies Should Protect Members From Avoidable Injuries

Posted by on 9:40 am in Uncategorized | Comments Off on Gym Policies Should Protect Members From Avoidable Injuries

A properly managed gym is one that always goes to great lengths to preserve the safety of its members. Commercial fitness establishments with lax safety policies and procedures may present avoidable liabilities. Members of a gym who are injured due to gross negligence, misconduct, poor advice, or lax oversight might wish to consider taking civil action. Gym Negligence Takes On Many Forms There are several ways in which a gym presents hazards to members. Members of a gym have to be on the lookout for such things as: Failure to rack weights. A gym may have a rule in place requiring members rack their weights. Doing so makes sense since weights strewn on the floor create a serious trip and fall hazard. Rules, however, are of no use unless enforced. The gym should sanction members known to leave weights lying about. A suspension policy that is enforced would indicate the gym is doing what is necessary to reduce hazards. The gym should require employees to return weights not racked to their proper place. Failure to devise and enforce such policies could put negligence on the shoulders of the gym owners. Improper suggestions for the use of tanning beds. Some gyms provide access to tanning beds. Due to the risk of burns, gym employees have to be careful about how much time they suggest a member spend in a bed. An employee who flippantly suggests someone who never tanned before spend 20 minutes under very hot lights may lead to the gym being held liable for any resultant injuries. The gym should take steps to educate employees about making proper recommendations. Hiring inexperienced personal trainers Requiring a personal trainer establish educational qualifications by holding a certificate from a reputable health and fitness organization must factor into the hiring decision. The gym should also only hire those with enough experience to properly and safely work one-on-one with clients. Conducting background and reference checks is advisable so as to determine if the prospective trainer presents harassment or inappropriate behavior risks. Remember, gym owners are going to be responsible for the actions of their employees. Seeking Counsel from an Attorney If you have been injured at a gym due to outright negligence on the part of management or employees, seek a meeting with a personal injury attorney about the situation. The attorney will examine the merits of the case and then provide counsel on how to move forward. Contact a professional such as Starnes  Rob P. LLC, Attorney At Law for more...

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What You Need To Know About Changing Your Name With Divorce

Posted by on 2:52 pm in Uncategorized | Comments Off on What You Need To Know About Changing Your Name With Divorce

If you are getting divorced, you may have been asked by your attorney about changing your name. Many women go back to using their maiden name after a divorce, but changing your name can mean a lot of work to get everything updated correctly. If you are confused about how the name change works with divorce, read on for more information to help you make your decision. What You Need To Know: 1.  It’s important to note that no one can force you to change your name back to your maiden name, it is strictly your decision alone. Do keep in mind the potential for awkwardness and confusion if your ex remarries and his new wife also want to use his last name. 2.  The most common method of name changing is to simply add the provision right into the divorce decree. You can begin using your maiden name as soon as the divorce is final. You may still be able to amend your divorce decree to include a name change if you have already filed the paperwork and decide to do so, even if the divorce is already final. 3.  If you do decide that you want to take back your maiden name, get ready to update all your important documents by making a list so you don’t leave anything out. You’ll likely want to update: Social Security card (the Social Security Administration will then inform the I.R.S. about the change) Driver’s license Passport Bank accounts, checks, bank cards. Credit cards Deeds and titles Loans, such as mortgage, vehicle and student Health, auto, home, renters, and life insurance policies Utilities Retirement plans, pensions, investment accounts Voter registration Children’s school records Your work-related personnel records, business cards, etc. 4.  The information here applies also to men. They can revert back to using their previous name if they were using a hyphenated name for the marriage. 5.  As with all legal matters, states have their own rules in regards to name changing, so your divorce attorney can best advise you about how it works in your state. 6.  These guidelines assume that you are taking back your maiden name. All other types of changes you want to make to your name, such as an entirely different name altogether, would come under the scope of traditional name-changing laws in your state. Using divorce as the vehicle for the name change is only available for those wishing to return to their maiden name. If may be worth the trouble for you, as it is for many, to take back your maiden name as part of your new beginning. Take into consideration the above information and consult with a divorce attorney (such as Kenneth J. Molnar Attorney) so that you can make an informed...

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Court Reporting: A Six-Figure Job With No College Degree

Posted by on 2:26 pm in Uncategorized | Comments Off on Court Reporting: A Six-Figure Job With No College Degree

What is a court reporter? If you’ve ever watched a courtroom drama, you’ve probably seen someone sitting in the corner typing on a strange looking machine. Court reporters make transcripts of legal proceedings, and they are very much in demand. What Is the Job Market Like for Court Reporters? With 15 percent of court reporters on the brink of retirement, thousands of jobs will be opening up in the next few years. Court reporting is one of a handful of careers that is expanding, not shrinking, so future job prospects are excellent. Where Do Court Reporters Work? Most reporting jobs are not in courtrooms, but in depositions or doing closed captioning. Since most court reporters are private contractors, they travel to where the jobs are. Those who are free to travel and are multilingual can even become international court reporters, traveling all over the world. How Do You Become a Court Reporter? To become a court reporter, you must first attend a certified training course. You can find listings of training programs for each state online or through the National Court Reporters Association. Online and continuing education programs are also available to suit your scheduling needs. How Much Can a Court Reporter Earn? How much your earn depends on your skills, availability and whether you work as a private contractor, for a private or government entity, or through a court reporting service. The median pay for a court reporter is $53,191, with the bottom 10 percent earning under $26,318 and the top 10 percent earning over $84,576. Experienced court reporters with excellent skills can set their own price and earn into six figures. Will Computers Ever Replace Court Reporters? While speech-to-text technology gets better every day, and computer software can greatly enhance the efficiency and speed of court reporting, they will never replace humans in this field. No technology can beat the human ear for picking up nuances, figurative narrative and double meanings in a person’s speech. All of these things are very important to the legal system’s interpretation of events. Court reporting is a growing career field with unlimited potential. If you have good typing skills and enjoy an ever-changing environment, court reporting may be a viable career option. The best way to learn what the job is really like is to contact a local court reporting service and talk to the staff. They can give you the pros and cons and guide you to the resources you need. For more information, contact Farrell Court Reporting or a similar...

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Why It’s A Good Idea To Avoid The Probate Process

Posted by on 7:53 am in Uncategorized | Comments Off on Why It’s A Good Idea To Avoid The Probate Process

When making estate succession plans, one of the things people get concerned about is how to avoid probate. Probate is the process of validating a will, identifying the assets, settling liabilities and transferring the assets to the beneficiaries. It seems important enough, so why would you want to avoid it? There are several reasons for this: To Reduce the Cost This is probably the primary reason people avoid probate. When leaving assets to your beneficiaries, you want them to get most if not all of them. However, probate will reduce what your beneficiaries will receive, because there are several things that have to be paid, such as: Court fees Attorney fees Executor fees Asset appraisal fees Fees for legal publications/notices If you have a large estate, then these fees can easily add up to huge sums of money. According to some estimates, the cost of probate can be as high as 7% in some places. Avoid probate and let your heirs get the money. To Help Your Heirs Get their Inheritance Fast The probate process can be fast or slow depending on a number of things, such as the size of the estate, the location of assets, types of properties and whether or not the will is contested. Don’t forget that the longer the process takes, the higher the associated costs are likely to be. Since you can’t be sure what will happen after your demise, and you want the best for your heirs, the best thing is to bypass the process altogether. To Maintain Privacy As you know, the probate process is a public one. Everything discussed, and every document involved in the process, becomes a matter of public record. Therefore, everybody who wants to know about your debts and assets will be able to find out. This may not be a concern for everybody, but you may have some things that you wish to keep away from the prying eyes of the public. Apart from that, there are some things, such as rare art collections, that you don’t want the public to know about; their beneficiaries might become targets of thieves. As you can see, there are valid reasons why you shouldn’t subject your heirs to the probate process. Therefore, you need to talk to your estate planning lawyer and explore some of the options available to you. These options may include joint ownership, living trusts, and death beneficiaries, among others. If you are looking for a lawyer that specializes in family law, visit Law Office of Alan L...

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Did You Really Know You Were Making A False Statement To A Government Official?

Posted by on 1:16 pm in Uncategorized | 0 comments

Lying to a federal government official is a crime. A person who makes a materially false statement both willfully and knowingly could face felony charges. A person who accidentally or unknowingly makes or, worse, is tricked into putting forth false statements may be found innocent in a court of law. A skilled defense attorney would have to provide clear evidence and a compelling argument the defendant never had intentions to deceive. Dumping Toxic Chemicals and Subsequent False Statements A business may be required to dispose of certain toxic chemicals under regulations put forth by the Environmental Protection Agency. During an investigation surrounding improperly dumped chemicals, a business owner states to government officials the chemicals do not come from his/her business. Later, it is discovered the toxic chemicals did, in fact, originate from the business in question. On the surface, it would appear the business owner is guilty of making a false statement. However, if he/she hired a disposal company to handle the removal of the chemicals and the removal service improperly dumped the chemicals, this changes matters. The owner had no knowledge of improper disposal and assumed the chemicals could not be his/hers. Yet, a false statement was made. The owner said “The chemicals did not come from this business” when, in fact, they did. A prosecution could emerge if a U.S. attorney doubts the veracity of the business owner’s statement. Defending the False Statement Prosecution of the false statement is going based on a belief the defendant deliberately lied when he/she made statements about the ownership of the chemicals. The defense attorney has to refute these allegations. For example, if the business owner provides emails from the removal service clearly noting he/she was under the impression the disposal work properly eliminated the chemicals, the statement was not deliberately false.   Not all exculpatory evidence is this clear. Evidence such as witnesses affirming oral statements made by the disposal company, however, must be compellingly presented by a criminal defense attorney to a jury. Unless the statements are presented in such a way reasonable doubt exists, garnering a “not guilty” verdict becomes difficult. New Federal Policy on False Statements Defending a false statement case now benefits from recent changes in Department of Justice policy. Per the agency, prosecutors must prove beyond a reasonable doubt the person making the statement knew it was both unlawful and false. This is another angle a skilled defense attorney can explore to achieve an acquittal. Contact a law firm, such as Davidson Law Center Inc, to how they can best help fulfill your...

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What Are Your Options When You’re Hit By An Uninsured Trucker?

Posted by on 2:59 pm in Uncategorized | 0 comments

If you have recently been injured in a collision in which a semi or heavy duty truck driver was at fault, you may be wondering about your financial (and legal) next steps. Although the other driver’s trucking insurance should help compensate you for any medical expenses incurred, there are a few situations in which this coverage may be compromised — and in some cases, the trucker may even be driving without a valid insurance policy. In this case, you will likely need to file a personal injury lawsuit against the other driver to recover funds for treatment and other expenses. Read on to learn more about the specific insurance exclusions that may impact your claim, as well as what you can do if the defendant’s insurance won’t pay. What can potentially compromise a trucker’s insurance coverage? Use of prescription or other drugs. Commercial trucking insurance companies differ from personal auto insurance companies in the type of policies offered. Often, these commercial policies include a lengthy list of situations in which coverage may be denied. One common exclusion is the recent use of certain prescription narcotics and illegal drugs. If a driver is involved in an accident and tests positive for certain illicit substances, his or her insurer may deny certain claims submitted as a result of the accident. (This is one reason so many trucking companies conduct periodic random drug tests on all drivers.) Negligent use of vehicle. These policies may also disclaim any liability for damage caused by the operator’s misuse or negligence. For example, if a driver recklessly fails to properly secure the cargo and it comes loose, injuring another motorist, traditional liability insurance may not cover this claim. What should you do if a driver’s insurance policy is not covering costs you’ve incurred? Fortunately, even if the other driver’s insurance is refusing to pay for expenses associated with the accident, your own personal auto policy will provide you with some compensation. Generally, your policy will help pay to repair damage to your vehicle, along with the costs of any medical expenses immediately following your accident. However, your insurance policy is unlikely to pay the costs of ongoing care, such as physical therapy, or compensate you for lost wages or other setbacks you’ve experienced. To recover these costs, you will likely have to file a personal injury lawsuit against the driver. If your lawsuit is successful, you will receive a judgment against this driver, and may be able to seize assets or even garnish wages. In other situations, the driver may be willing to settle with you to avoid the cost and hassle of a trial. You will want to consult with an experienced personal injury attorney at Gabrielson Law Offices, Ltd to determine all your available...

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