How To Acquire A Divorce Decree When Your Spouse Is Nowhere To Be Found

Posted by on October 23, 2014 in Blog, Law | 0 comments

Estranged spouses in marriage are pretty common, but they are often no more than a few miles away. If you are trying to obtain a divorce from an estranged spouse, and you have no idea where he or she is, the divorce process is more complicated. The first thing you need to do is hire a divorce attorney from a firm like Granowitz, White & Weber Attorneys at Law, and then ask about the laws in your state regarding this particular divorce situation. Typically, you will need to consider the following in your pursuit of personal freedom from a non-existent, in absentia partner. No Contact, Minimal Contact Estranged can mean one of two things: Your spouse still has minimal contact with you because you share children or you have some social interaction among the same group of friends, but you are emotionally estranged. You have no contact with each other whatsoever and are physically estranged as well as emotionally estranged. Your lawyer and the divorce court judge will want to know which distinction you use to describe your lack of relationship with your spouse. Attempts to Serve Papers If you have a vague idea of where your spouse might be, but neither you nor the state department of child support/ human services has been able to pinpoint his location, the courts will attempt to locate him too. Even with a lawyer’s help, you cannot garner a decree of divorce until every attempt has been made to serve papers on your soon-to-be ex. Most courts in most states consider this fair warning, and will not proceed until due course has been executed. Publication Additionally, some states require that you place a national advertisement in papers announcing your search for a divorce from your spouse. In legal terms this is called a “publication”. It gives your spouse one final chance to answer and appear before the judge rules in your favor. The Final Action On your court date, your lawyer will present the facts in your case and the claims you make to any and all property your ex has left behind. When your spouse does not show up to claim anything, or present the court with his or her current address for the purpose of child support and alimony, the judge finds everything in your favor. Some states may allow a grace period wherein your ex can reappear and reclaim property, but it is very rare, especially when these spouses have been gone for...

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3 Factors That Might Cause Motorcycle Accidents

Posted by on October 22, 2014 in Blog, Law | 0 comments

When most people think about motorcycle accidents, they might automatically assume that the motocyclist or another driver was at fault for the accident. While that is the case in the vast majority of accidents, there are also other causes of motorcycle accidents. Some of those causes might mean that an injured motorcyclist can opt to seek compensation from a third-party entity, which means seeking compensation from someone other than the other driver.  Wheel wobble If a high-speed wobble is the cause of a motorcycle accident, the manufacturer of the motorcycle might be held liable for the accident, according to FindLaw. A wobble accident occurs when the front end of the motorcycle begins to wobble at higher speeds. This makes the motorcycle unstable, which can lead to an accident. A misalignment of the wheels is one condition that might lead to wobble accidents. Design and defects There are some instances in which the design of the motorcycle or defects that occur during the manufacturing process can lead to accidents. When that occurs, injured motorcyclists can file a product liability lawsuit against the company that designed the motorcycle, the company that manufactured the motorcycle, or both. This type of claim entails proving that the company or companies responsible should have foreseen that the issue would cause an accident. Hazardous conditions Because motorcycles only have two wheels, they can become unstable when maneuvering over obstacles that wouldn’t affect four-wheel vehicles. A small patch of gravel, an oil slick, and uneven pavement are examples of hazardous conditions that might lead to a motorcycle accident. When these accidents occur, the injured motorcyclist might choose to seek compensation through a premises liability lawsuit. In that case, the owner of the roadway would be the person who would be considered the defendant in the case. When the road is owned by a government entity, a notice of claim or notice of tort is required prior to moving forward with the case. As you can see, gathering evidence and concisely stating your claim are vital in motorcycle accident cases. This might mean that you need to get experts to testify or that you have to go through a lengthy process of proving your side. Because motorcycle injury cases can be complex, obtaining the help of an experienced attorney (from George T. Bochanis Law Offices or another firm) who has experts available is vital. An experienced attorney can also help you to learn about the claim process and interpret applicable...

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3 Essential Types Of Documents To Provide Your Tax Accountant

Posted by on October 21, 2014 in Blog, Law | 0 comments

For most people, few things generate more stress than completing yearly taxes. Luckily, that’s what tax accountants are for–to shoulder the burden of that stress. But in order for a tax accountant to do the best job, they’re going to need the right information. If you are planning to have a tax accountant handle your taxes this year, read on. This article will outline three types of documents you should be sure to give them. 1. Income documents First and foremost, your accountant is going to need to know how much you made last year. The most common such document is the W-2 form. This details not only the amount of your income, but the amount of deductions that were taken out of it. Just as important as the W-2, however, are the various 1099 forms. Because not everybody has to deal with these forms, fewer people are aware of them. Some of the most common 1099 forms include: 1099-MISC – used to report money earned through self-employment or as an independent contractor 1099-INT – used to report income from interest and dividends 1099-B – used to report brokerage income from stocks and bonds 1099-S – used to report real estate income 2. Expense documents Here’s where that shoe box bulging with business-related receipts comes in. But when it comes to expense documents, there are much more than just those. For instance, it is now common to receive many receipts and invoices in a purely digital form. Plan on trawling through your inbox to hunt these down. (Hint: search for emails with attachments, as such receipts are often sent as pdfs.) In addition, you’ll want to track down proof of the following: job-related education expenses medical expenses charitable contributions child care costs interest paid on your mortgage any other types of interest paid 3. Proof of loss (if applicable) If your business or home suffered some sort of loss during the year–say through a fire, a flood, or a theft–you may not have access to all of the relevant documents. Believe it or not, the IRS is actually somewhat understanding of this. In many cases, you may even be eligible to apply for special tax deductions. In order to do this, however, you will need to provide your tax accountant with as much relevant information as you can. This extends to such documents as: photographs disaster-related receipts insurance claim reports Bottom Line A good tax accountant can save you not only time and stress, but money as well. Remember, though, that it is up to you to provide them with the information they need. The more documents you provide, the more they may be able to save you. The three classes of documents discussed above should provide a good place to...

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3 Reasons To Hire A Criminal Attorney

Posted by on October 21, 2014 in Blog, Law | 0 comments

There are some situations that you simply can’t get out of with words. Perhaps you missed a court date, ran a red light or got into a fight that turned in a fist brawl and were charged with a crime. Regardless of what your criminal charges may be, you will need legal expertise to help you during this difficult time. By knowing the reasons to hire this specialized attorney and ways this person can assist you, you might be motivated schedule an appointment. The Lawyer Will Listen To Your Case The role of any attorney is to listen to you and advise you legally on what to do. This will happen on your first consultation in many cases, but be prepared to answer the questions listed below: 1. What was the date of the crime? 2. What crime were you charge with committing? 3. Where did the conviction take place? 4. Were drugs involved in any way and did you attempt to sell drugs? 5. Were there any other people around when you were charged with this crime? 6.  Do you feel these charges shouldn’t have been filed? The more details you can provide to the criminal attorney, the better legal advice you will receive. Complete Legal Filings A response must be provided to the court regarding your conviction, and the lawyer can do this for you. The complexity of the law makes it imperative to rely on a professional in this field who legally knows what to do and will complete the necessary paperwork on your behalf. Listed below are some legalities the attorney can attend to for you. 1. The lawyer can meet with the judge and file a motion of not guilty for the client. 2. Ask for a mistrial if a verdict that is reached is not agreeable by the client. 3. In some cases, the lawyer can appeal a verdict that is set by the courts. Decrease Your Penalties It is possible a criminal attorney can decrease the charges that were made against you. This could result in lower fees that may be payable to the plaintiff or court, or reduced jail time. For example, if you were convicted of driving under the influence, this often carries strict penalties that must be carried out by the driver. The attorney you select can work on your behalf to decrease these. Finally, your best defense in an unfortunate situation of being convicted of a crime is to hire a criminal attorney. This will allow you the opportunity to gain the legal expertise you need at this...

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Ways Your Lawyer Can Mount A Disorderly Conduct Defense

Posted by on October 21, 2014 in Blog | 0 comments

Disorderly conduct is a charge that can encompass a lot of things. It can mean that you’ve being accused of being drunk in public, loitering, or using vulgar or obscene language in a public place. Some people think this charge can be used as a catch-all or be unfairly applied. For example, when a celebrity uses foul language or makes an obscene gesture at a photographer, they’re not likely to be arrested. A drunken fan yelling obscenities in a football stadium also probably won’t be charged. But if the scenario is flipped to include an inner-city teenager instead of a celebrity or fan, will he or she be charged? If you’re charged with disorderly conduct, you should be aware that it’s a criminal offense. It’s on the lower end of the scale, to be sure, but it still means you’ve been accused of a crime. If you’re convicted, it could have consequences that extend to, among other things, your job and your ability to maintain a professional license. The following are some possible ways to defend against a disorderly conduct charge: A lack of a threat In some jurisdictions, your actions have to rise to the level of a threat to the safety of others. This, of course, is very subjective. Your lawyer may be able to argue that no one’s safety was threatened, especially if you have a witness. For example, if you lost your temper in public and cursed at your friend, he may be willing to testify that he did not feel threatened by you. Protected speech Your lawyer may be able to argue that your language is protected by your right to freedom of speech under the Constitution’s First Amendment. Failure to hear an officer’s order Sometimes people are charged with disorderly conduct because the police officer says they didn’t disperse when ordered to. It’s possible to argue that you didn’t hear or understand the officer, especially if you were in a large crowd of people. Self defense If a disorderly conduct charge is a result of a physical altercation, it may be possible to argue self defense. Mistaken identification If you’re in a crowd of friends, for example, and they’re drinking and yelling obscenities, you may be mistakenly arrested even though you were merely an onlooker. Contact a criminal defense attorney, such as at Balduf William Law Office, if you’ve been charged with disorderly conduct. He or she can make sure your rights are protected, defend you against the charges, and, if necessary, represent you in...

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3 New Roles For Oil And Gas Lawyers To Capitalize On

Posted by on October 21, 2014 in Blog, Law | 0 comments

In the energy exploration era, oil and gas lawyers have the capacity to enhance their value and earning potential in the industry by capitalizing on new roles and trends that are transforming the field. From ownership initiatives to alternative energy sources, these attorneys are helping usher many companies into the 21st century. Whether you are a seasoned lawyer in the field or are just beginning your career as an oil and gas attorney, there are several opportunities for you to help improve your career. Learn about just 3 of the trends below that are certain to boost your practice. Equity In the past, energy trading companies sought to be as light as possible in terms of owning physical assets in the energy exploration and marketing realm. However, now more outfits are seeking to take equity stakes in every stage of the energy process, from drilling all the way to transporting. In addition, many companies are relying heavily on oil and gas attorneys to facilitate investment from capital markets, including banks, investment groups, and private equity firms.  Alternative Extraction Methods Oil and gas attorneys, like at Roberts Miceli Boileau & Doutt LLP, are helping companies to leverage resources and assets in alternative oil and gas extraction methods. For instance, many attorneys are helping companies navigate both the financial component of exploration initiatives, as well as the sensitive environmental codes and regulations surrounding the extraction process. Known as “fracking,” this extraction process entails pumping chemicals, sand, and water into shale rock formations where harness-able gas exists. There is slight concern that this process may contaminate local drinking water sources and the natural habitat. This is an example where attorneys might coordinate with environmental and local authorities to ensure all proper environmental and safety codes and regulations are observed, in order to ensure a seamless and safe exploration process. Moreover, the investors see tremendous potential in this exploration method for producing lower cost and more efficient fuels sources.  Portfolio Diversification Energy companies are working with oil and gas attorneys to help them capitalize on alternative fuel sources as well. Attorneys are helping to raise money and facilitate acquisitions that provide energy companies with assets in coal, metals, uranium, solar, and wind power, among other raw materials and energy sources. Along these lines, they are helping companies craft public relations and educational efforts that raise awareness to the importance of green efforts and conservation. The companies seek to enhance their profitability, while remaining sensitive to the social landscape around energy and environmental preservation. ...

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How to Choose a Divorce Lawyer

Posted by on October 20, 2014 in Blog, Law | 0 comments

If you have been served with divorce papers, you will need to choose a lawyer to represent you in the courtroom. This may be the first time you ever had to hire a lawyer, and you may have no idea what to look for. If you unfortunately need to go through the divorce process, you will need some tips in hiring the right divorce lawyer. Here are some points to consider. Interviewing Process You will want to find and interview a few lawyers before jumping into a contract or agreement to hire. It is never a good idea to hire a lawyer without meeting them ahead of time. Call at least three law firms such as Bergermann Law Firm that offer free consultations and make appointments to interview. Make sure to ask questions that are pertinent to your specific case. If you get the wrong vibe right away, then scratch this lawyer off of your list. Some things you need to ask include: The lawyers hourly rate What the lawyer’s experience includes What is the lawyer’s success rate in divorce cases What resources does the lawyer have available to help your case Money Screening You will want to hire someone who is looking out for your best interest, not someone who is more interested in seeing how much money they can charge you. If the lawyer asks you a ton of questions and seems genuinely interested in your case, it is a good indication that they may be a decent lawyer. If they start bringing up a lot of scenarios with extra fees that would be needed, they may be in it for the money.  Some Red Flags If the prospective lawyer divulges any information using names of people they have represented before, that is an sign that they cannot commit to confidentiality. If they seem distracted during the interview, such as looking at paperwork or a cell phone, they will not be right for your case. They may do the same at court. You want someone who gives full attention to what you are saying.  Making A Decision Do not sign anything right away; wait to agree to hire the lawyer. You can get caught up in the moment and not think clearly. At least take a day to think about what you have learned during the interview. If you feel positive about what you have discussed, then after a few days give a call back to discuss retaining the lawyer.  You will want to find someone who communicates with you while giving you the sense that they will handle your case professionally and with your best interest in mind. It is tough to find a lawyer when you are not sure about their ethics in advance. Interviewing and asking about their track record will give you a better sense of how you feel about their...

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Determining Child Placement And Custody In Extraordinary Circumstances

Posted by on October 20, 2014 in Blog, Law | 0 comments

Most parents will have an unpleasant battle in court over who gets placement and custody, but sometimes special circumstances make the decision easier or more difficult for the judge. These situations are extreme and out of the norm, and ones which no parent thinks he or she will ever face. However, as the following article illustrates, these circumstances still require a family law attorney and a ruling which places the child(ren) in the best possible home once the situation is sorted out. Determining Placement and Custody When One Parent Has Kidnapped the Children Most people would not think that taking their children and running across country is kidnapping, but most family courts do think just that. It does not bode well for the parent that has taken the children because he or she will lose virtually all of his or her parental rights if and when caught. Usually the parent who is still in the city the children previously resided in will get custody and placement. The only exceptions to this rule involve a criminal parent or jailed parent who is restrained and detained from following after the kidnapping parent. If you think you can run far and fast from your ex to keep your children to yourself, you should reconsider this impulsive decision. Placement and Custody Issues Surrounding Chronically Ill or Comatose Children This is a particularly sensitive issue because the courts could award fifty-fifty custody and placement, even if the children are in the hospital full-time. Treatment records and support for these children play a large part in deciding which parent can best support the child if he or she were healthy, conscious, or living at home. Unless an investigation has been launched into how or why a child has ended up in the hospital and in a coma, both parents are fit for the job under family court law. (If a child’s coma is the result of parent negligence or endangerment, it puts that parent’s rights at risk for placement and custody denial). Sticky Family Situations Are Family Law Attorney’s Specialty With these particular issues, as well as a few not mentioned here (e.g., drug addict parents), a family law attorney like LaCroix & Hand PC is necessary for the safety and well-being of the children. Parents struggle with the emotionality of these situations, but the family lawyer is a detached third party who works for the best interests of the kids. If you are in any of these extraordinary circumstances, a family lawyer can...

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Can Filing For Bankruptcy Stop A Foreclosure Sale?

Posted by on October 20, 2014 in Blog | 0 comments

An upcoming foreclosure sale on your home does not necessarily mean you have run out of options to save it.  If you are planning on filing for Chapter 7 bankruptcy, now is the time to do so. The bankruptcy could possibly save your home. In addition to filing for bankruptcy, there are two more options that could help you keep your home.  Why Does a Chapter 7 Bankruptcy Filing Save Your Home? When you file for a Chapter 7 bankruptcy, the court will automatically issue a stay on all actions by your lenders. This means that your lender cannot sale your home until the court says so.  Do not rely on the stay to save your home forever though. It is only temporary and can be lifted at the discretion of the court. Your lender can even go to court and ask a judge to lift the stay so that it can go through with the foreclosure sale.  If you have no interest in keeping your home, you can use the space allowed by the stay to pack up your home and find somewhere else to live. If you want to keep your home though, you need to take action as soon as the stay is in place.  Can a Loan Modification Help? One of the ways you can save your home while the stay is in place is to talk to your lender about a loan modification. A loan modification would change the terms of your original loan agreement. You could end up with a lower monthly payment or interest rates.  Your lender could even cut down on the total amount that you owe on the home. The lender will usually put the overdue balance in the new agreement so you will no longer be behind on your payments.  How Can a Chapter 13 Filing Help? Another option you have is to convert your Chapter 7 filing to a Chapter 13. Chapter 13 filings set up a repayment plan for your debtors that spans up to five years. A bankruptcy trustee and your attorney will review your finances and determine what you can pay towards your debts.  All of your debts will be consolidated to one payment. As a result, you will not have to worry about making your mortgage payments on time. As long as you are making the one payment a month to the trustee, your mortgage is being covered.  The best way to save your home from an upcoming foreclosure sale is to talk to your bankruptcy attorney. He or she can help you explore your options and help you take...

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Professional Attorney Assistance With Your Disability Benefits Appeal

Posted by on October 20, 2014 in Blog | 0 comments

If you recently filed for disability benefits and your claim was denied, it is important to contact a disability lawyer as soon as possible. Approximately 70 percent of all initial disability claims are denied, often times due to unintentional application omissions or inconsistencies. An experienced Social Security disability attorney can help you in filing an appeal in order to obtain the benefits you are entitled to. Read on to learn more about the disability claim appeals process with the assistance of a professional attorney.  Disability Reconsideration Review In most states, the first step in filing a disability denial appeal is to submit a request for reconsideration. States that do not allow for reconsideration require that applicants start the process with an initial disability hearing. Your attorney will assist you in filing your request in an accurate and timely fashion. During the reconsideration period, your initial claim will be reviewed for a second time by an independent medical examiner and medical consultant. If the medical examiner and consultant agree with the first decision and deny your claim, you will receive a second denial notice advising you on your rights to appeal. If your claim is approved, you will receive an award letter that states the amount of benefits you are entitled to, as well as the date when you should start receiving payments. Administrative Law Judge Disability Hearing If your state does not allow for reconsideration or if your reconsideration request was denied, the next step in the appeals process is to request a disability hearing. Prior to your hearing, your attorney will examine your medical records and assist in obtaining additional documentation to remedy any inconsistencies or omissions in your initial claim. During your hearing, your case will be presented to an administrative law judge. The judge will assess your initial claim and consider all new evidence submitted to the court by your attorney. If the judge grants your appeal, you will receive a determination award letter that will state the specific amount of disability and back pay benefits (if any) that you are entitled to. If the judge denies your appeal, you have the option to request a review by the Appeals Council. Appeals Council and Federal Court Review If the Appeals Council reviews your case and does not agree with the administrative law judge’s decision, you will receive a benefit award letter and will begin to receive disability benefits. If the Appeals Council agrees with the administrative law judge and denies your claim, the final option is to file your case in federal court. A federal judge will hear your case and make a final decision regarding your benefits. Professional Legal Assistance While it is not a requirement for disability applicants to retain the services of an attorney in order to file an appeal, it is definitely in your best interest to do so, as the procedure can be complex, especially as you move through the various levels of the appeals process. Trusting your case to a seasoned disability attorney, like those at the Law Offices Of Russell J. Goldsmith, can help to ensure that your appeal is handled in a professional and efficient...

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