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Law And Legal Help

  • How to Protect Your Will from Being Contested

    When you take the time and effort to create an estate plan including a will, obviously you’re doing so because you want to protect your family and loved ones in the event of your death, and you want your wishes to be carried out.

    Even if you have a will, however, people do have the ability to contest it, which might mean that your family either loses the protection you set up for them, or they have to pay legal fees to fight the person contesting your will.

    So what can you do now to ensure your will isn’t contested?

    There are some things you can do, along with your estate lawyer creating your will, to add additional protection against a disputed will.

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    Have Your Mental Capacity Documented

    One of the first grounds people use to contest a will is mental capacity. They may bring a challenge to the will saying the creator didn’t have the proper mental capacity at the time they drafted their will.

    When you’re creating your will, make sure you have your estate lawyer establish your mental capacity. If there is any possibility questions could arise, you could include evidence from your medical provider.

    Record Will Signing

    A relatively simple way to make sure your will can’t be contested, at least not easily, is to record the signing of your will.

    It should be noted, however, that this can’t be the only way you show your capacity in any U.S. state. It might just be done as one more safeguards, rather than a standalone tactic to make sure your will is protected.

    Avoid Huge Surprises

    If you include something in your will that might come as a big shock to your relatives, you might want to let them know when you create the document. If they know things ahead of time, it will cut down on unpleasant surprises that can lead to a contested will.
    With that being said, not everyone is comfortable doing that, so that’s something that’s best left to personal discretion.

    Create a Living Trust

    If you’re very concerned about the potential for a heated battled over your will, you might opt for a living trust rather than a will. In many cases, living trusts are viewed as more iron-clad than a will and more enforceable.

    The reason is that these trusts are also used during your life, rather than just after your death, so they’re less likely to be impacted by fraud.

    No Contest Clause

    A final option is adding a no contest clause, which is an option in some states, but not others. For example, Florida is a state that doesn’t allow for the no-contest clause in a will.

    If you do live in a state that allows for these clauses, they are something to consider because they essentially say if someone challenges an aspect of the will they don’t receive anything.

    The idea of a contested will can be upsetting, particularly if you have family members you see as being a potential problem, but when you work with your estate lawyer, it’s likely you can create solutions that will work well for you.

     

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    Advantages a Great Lawyer Can Give to You

    Being involved in a legal situation is never a fun experience. However, it is sometimes unavoidable based on your actions or the actions of others. It is absolutely crucial that you have outstanding legal counsel if you are ever forced to defend yourself in a court of law. However, finding this legal counsel can often be much easier said than done. You need to take your time and be patient in order to ensure that you hire a lawyer who can help to win your case. Here are a few of the key advantages that you will be provided with when you hire an outstanding attorney.

    1. Your lawyer will be able to assemble evidence and witnesses who will support your claims.

    Most of the work that a lawyer does is outside of the courtroom. A case is often won or lost based on the amount of preparation that a lawyer does before he or she enters the courtroom. Lawyers who do not properly prepare for every possible outcome will be destined to lose their case. Your lawyer and his or her staff will assemble your case using evidence and witnesses in an attempt to prove your innocence in the minds of the jury.

    2. You will get good advice.

    There will be many times during the course of your case where you will need to make a decision. Your lawyer will carefully explain all of your options. Your Alameda County DUI lawyer will then give you his or her opinion regarding the decision you should make that is in your best interests. This will prevent you from making a bad decision that hurts your case in the long run.

    3. Lawyers are experienced at negotiating settlements.

    Ideally, you do not want to go into the courtroom in the first place. You will be much better off financially if you are able to negotiate a settlement with the other party that keeps your case from going to court. Your lawyer can sit down with the opposing lawyer and hammer out a settlement that is agreeable to both parties. There are several advantages to negotiating a settlement and staying out of court. First of all, your legal fees will be drastically reduced. You will also be able to move on with your life. You will not need to take time off from work to go to court.

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    How To Know When It’s Time To File For Divorce

    If you and your partner have been going through a tough time for a long enough time, divorce may be the only answer. Of course, it’s one thing to feel this way after a nasty argument. All couples go through similar feelings after a spat. But if this has been your feeling for a very long time – for months, or even years, then it may be time to seriously consider filing for a full legal divorce from your spouse. The decision to commit to a divorce is never easy, so it bears some serious discussion and forethought.

    Are The Differences Between You And Your Spouse Irreconcilable?

    A consultation with a New York divorce attorney, whether from the firm of Tully Rinckey or another similar organization, is an excellent way to confirm your feelings. Sitting down with an attorney and discussing your options may be the best way to either confirm that you truly are headed for divorce or that your marriage is worth another try. If you decide on divorce, you will need to know your options. You need to be sure that your bank account, property, and children will all still be in excellent condition when you come out the other end of a divorce battle.

    Is The Future Of Your Children At Stake?

    The most important question on your mind will naturally be concerning your children. Will you be able to sue for and receive full custody? Or will you at least keep partial custody, including weekend visits and the like? The ability to stop you from ever seeing your children again is a weapon that all too many spouses and their lawyers will try to hold over your head in order to blackmail you into signing a divorce agreement that will be favorable for them and horrible for you. Don’t let them manipulate your fears into signing such an unfavorable agreement. Know your rights and fight hard for them.

    Is The Future Of Your Property At Stake?

    Another issue that causes many people to hesitate before filing for divorce is the future disposition of their property. This is a reason why many people remain for years in an unhappy marriage. You certainly don’t want to lose your home, car, or other property as the unfortunate result of a divorce settlement. And you certainly don’t want to lose half of your income or other benefits in order to satisfy the hunger of a greedy former spouse. These are issues that you will need the help of a professional attorney to resolve.

    Have You Contacted A Qualified New York Divorce Attorney?

    It’s an excellent idea to consult a New York divorce lawyer, such as one from Rinckey or another area firm, before you make your final decision. Once you have decided to file for divorce, it’s very hard to back down, so be absolutely certain that this is what you want. After you have filed, you will need to have a qualified divorce lawyer by your side to give you valuable advice and counsel as you fight for your rights. Knowing what you want and how you want to go about getting it is the way to win. A professional divorce attorney can help you achieve your goal.

  • What Should You Do If You Get Hit By a Car

    Getting hit by a car or other vehicle is most unfortunate. You may have been in a vehicle of your own, on a bicycle, or on foot. Whatever the case, it stands a good chance that you were injured in the collision, perhaps very badly. We’d like to think that in this situation, the law will be on our side automatically. Unfortunately, there are many ways in which your case can fall through the cracks if you do not do your due diligence. The law itself is on your side, providing you were not in the wrong. In either case, you should do your best to make sure the following steps are taken, to ensure that you get the representation and restitution that you deserve.

    • Call Your Solicitor. Road traffic accident claims are sure to go nowhere if you don’t have a solicitor on your side. If you don’t already have a lawyer when the collision occurs, it is imperative that you find one. In this case, it makes sense to go with a solicitor who specializes in traffic claims. These solicitors will have experience in cases such as yours, as well as financing structures that work well for people in your situation. If you are badly injured, make sure to pass this duty along to someone you trust, and make sure that you are contacted when a suitable candidate is determined. Don’t be afraid to veto the choice if it is made on your behalf. This is your representation we’re talking about, after all.
    • Document the Accident Yourself. Before the days of mobile phones, documenting the site of a traffic accident meant getting the license number and insurance information of the other driver. Today, the process requires no pencil and paper, providing you have the right technology. Make sure to take a picture of both cars involved in the collision, especially the registration tag of the other vehicle or vehicles. Take pictures of damage to all involved vehicles, especially the damage to your own. Finally, make careful note of any damage to your own body or sundry property. It may be up to this evidence later to determine your restitution.
    • Communicate With Witnesses. If there are witnesses at the scene, do your best to get their contact information. You should also contact nearby friends or relatives – anyone who might be an emergency contact who has time to meet you at the scene before (presumably) you are taken away to the hospital. Witnesses sometimes play prominently in traffic accident claims, and you don’t want to miss out on their testimony if the situation calls for it.

    There are many ways that the time period following a traffic accident can resolve. If you want to ensure the best possible resolution to your accident, it is important that you make every effort to set yourself up for success, especially in the minutes and hours following the unfortunate event. If you do these things, you should have an easier time getting the resolution you need.

     

     

  • 5 Tips For The Morning After Your First Time DUI

    So you are dead tired as you open your eyes on this new day. You are just thankful yesterday is over. Hazy eyed you begin to recount the previous 24 hours. Here you are in your own bed, but a few hours ago you were walking away from jail, bail paid, freed to face the consequences of your first DUI.

    How you got here doesn’t matter right now, all the recollection in the world, all the hindsight is not going to stop you from that last few beers, shots, or drinks. You made a mistake, lost track of yourself, got in a car, and drove. That policeman noticed something in how you were driving, noticed something about your vehicle, or even was just being random.  What you did in that moment and from now on is what matters.  How do you even begin to deal with your first DUI?

    Collect your thoughts

    Try your best to get your head around the events that surrounded your arrest for the DUI. Do the best you can to write a log of what happened and when. What did you do to get pulled over? Were you cooperative or belligerent?

    Did you blow or refuse

    To blow or not to blow. If you blew over .08, you immediately gave evidence against you that is fairly irrefutable. If you blew under, you gave yourself a chance to plea down or even have your case dismissed. So, if you feel that you have been mistakenly pulled over, it is in your best interest to blow and have your BAC recorded. If your behavior has you feeling doubtful, you might consider not blowing.

    If you refused

    Refusal to incriminate yourself is your constitutional right. Be aware that any consequences of not blowing are much less than a straight path to a DUI conviction. You will still be arrested based on the suspicions of the officer, and his experiences during your field sobriety tests. You will also receive a 12-month administrative suspension of your driver’s license. This suspension has nothing to do with your criminal charges. It is apparently designed to put some teeth into the choice to blow or not. So, if you choose not to, be ready to go to battle to keep your license

    Did you consent to a blood test

    If you did blow you most likely did not have to have blood drawn. If you refused to blow, you might have allowed a blood draw at the police station. If so, you have introduced a more accurate measurement of your blood alcohol level. Blood draws have to have samples for you and the prosecutor. There can be differences that can work in your favor and there can be complications with the testing lab that can open a door for you to lessen your punishment.

    Seek help

    A sea lawyer is a sailor who, in their description, is so well versed in the Uniform Code of Military Justice that he is just like a lawyer. You will have friends who say, hands down, they know as much as a real lawyer. They don’t. Hire a real board certified drunk driving attorney to help you through this. If you know someone who has been through this, you can get references and estimates of costs. If you think you can take this on yourself, remember the costs. Losing means a lot is going to be lost; wages, jobs, relationships, freedoms, and so much mor

  • Modern Laws That Deal With The Security of New Technology

    The digital realm is still in its infancy, which means that having laws or any type of legal precedents in place is currently difficult. However, that doesn’t mean that you don’t have to pay attention to it. On the contrary, especially if you’re a part of a business that has a large digital presence, you have to be more careful than ever with things like cyber security and related topics.

    So a few legal issues to pay attention to in order to make sure that you can handle matters with modern business law equitably include understanding cyber threats, knowing things about divorce laws and privacy, understanding legal issues with cookies and trackers, having a feel for government oversight of digital privacy, and knowing when new laws are created regarding digital transmission.

    Understanding Cyber Threats

    If you use a computer or mobile phone, there’s a risk of cyber threat. This could be internal to your company, or external from a foreign digital attacker. It could be someone breaking in to snoop around, or it could be a company trying to steal information and cause real damage. And the laws regarding this kind of behavior can get tricky. Because things like intent can be difficult to determine, and there’s not always physical damage done, make sure that you understand potential ramifications early on with any legal pursuits.

    Divorce Law and Privacy

    Because everyone has a cell phone now, there are some adjustments that have been made regarding divorce law and digital privacy. Judges and lawyers can order that transcripts from phone calls and text messages be used in court proceedings, which means that even if you thought your texts were private, in a legal sense, that isn’t always the case.

    Legal Issues With Cookies and Trackers

    When you look into cookies and trackers, you’ll be amazed at how much of your digital footprint is recorded and archived. You probably don’t have as much privacy or anonymity as you might think, even if you use private browsing windows, and if you ever get taken to court, your digital history can most certainly be used to show your character.

    Government Oversight of Digital Privacy

    And if state and community laws regarding the digital realm are a little behind, the Federal government can’t get organized at all in their efforts to standardize what means what when it comes to internet privacy. Make sure to read any news about developments, because cases will be coming up where major oversight will be involved.

    The Creation of New Laws For Digital Transmission

    Because there are so many new technologies popping up, there will, out of necessity, be new laws that come into play in the next few years regarding privacy, copyright, fair use, censorship, freedom of speech, and everything in between. The more you know about these topics, the better informed you’ll be about how to conduct yourself during your online experiences.

     

  • Bicycle Accident In California

    In California, many of us depend on our bicycles as a means of getting from place to place on a daily basis. Unfortunately, bicycles are no match for automobiles and too often, those on a bicycle can fall victim to an accident involving a car. Bicycle accident injuries often result in broken bones, severe internal injuries and unfortunately even death. Those who are on a bicycle do not have the protection offered by cars such as seat belts, air bags and enclosures that help protect them. Attorneys understand that injuries that are sustained in a bicycle accident can be caused by a number offactors including:

    ● Negligent repair
    ● Defective parts
    ● Failure of town/city to offer a bicycle lane
    ● Failure to have proper signage
    ● Improper lighting
    ● Vehicles driving in bike lanes

    Far too many people are injured as a result of these causes and we understand that you want an attorney who will fight for your rights as a bicycle user. If you are involved in a bicycle accident, the police should be contacted immediately. If there is a serious injury police will further investigate the causes of the accident and provide a full report typically within ten days of the accident. If in the unfortunate event a death was involved chances are this investigation w ill take longer. If you’re in need of a accident lawyer please contact a local attorney and have them fight for your rights. We’ll help you identify the responsible parties whether.

    Manufacturer of bicycle helmets, retail merchants who may be responsible or the person who caused the accident. If you’re the victim of a bicycle accident in Palmdale, Lancaster, Bakersfield, King County, Vasalia, Hanford, Fresno or anywhere in Central California, you need someone who will defend your rights and get you the compensation that you deserve since the injuries sustained will dramatically change your life. Don’t suffer the long lasting pain and injury that is too often associated with bicycle accidents without exploring your rights under the personal injury law s of the State of California. Call Pacific Attorney Group and let us help you make sure that your rights are protected if you’ve been involved in a bicycle accident.

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    Is a Tax Attorney in Your Near Future?

    If you are dealing with a tax headache or two, are you simply throwing your hands up in the air in defeat?

    For the millions of Americans dealing with tax issues, the problems can range from minor to quite major. If you are one of those individuals (no matter how bad the problem may be), letting it go is simply not an option.

    As anyone ever audited by the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) can tell you, it is far from a pleasant experience. In fact, it can be downright intimidating, leaving many not knowing where to turn for help.

    When confronted by tax issues, a New York tax attorney can make the difference, a difference that could mean lots of money (one way or the other) for you. For those residing outside the New York area, a Google search and/or word-of-mouth information can land you a qualified tax attorney.

    So, is a tax attorney in your near future?

    When the Time Comes for Help

    If you’re currently battling a tax issue, why would you wait to get help?

    With a sound tax attorney fighting for you, you stand a much better chance of righting your financial ship. In the event you don’t reach out for help, your financial well-being (and that of your family in many cases) can go downhill quickly.

    Among some of the ways a qualified tax attorney can assist:

    1. Laws – First and foremost, he or she can bring you up to speed on the tax laws and how you may or may not have broken them. Trying to figure them out on your own can be time-consuming and frustrating to say the least. Let their expertise guide you so that you know what step or steps you need to take next;
    2. Confidence – When the IRS is on your trail, it can become easy to feel intimidated and overwhelmed. By having an experienced tax attorney fighting for you, that feeling of being alone can quickly subside. Use their expertise to put you at ease, a feeling that will undoubtedly make it easier to deal with whatever financial tax issue you are faced with;
    3. Deals – Finally, a seasoned tax attorney can help you arrive at a deal with the IRS on your tax matter or matters. While the ideal scenario is you end up owing little or nothing after an investigation is concluded, reality also must be an option. If you do owe a sizable penalty, your tax attorney can work with officials and you to come to an agreement on a final total.

    Learn from This Experience

    While no one wants to suffer a sizable financial problem, it happens each and every day across America.

    That said learning from such unfortunate occurrences is one of the best things an individual can do. Taking something out of an otherwise disappointing experience can be the one bright spot. If you are in such a financial mess, educating yourself on what is taking place can prevent it from happening again.

    Your tax attorney of choice can play a major role in that education, so keep your eyes and ears open when discussing the matter with them. Their experience over the years puts them in a tremendous position to educate individuals, an education that can save money over time.

    Whether you are in the situation you are in due to job issues, a divorce gone bad, investment losses etc. learn from such an experience. In doing so, you will greatly lessen the chances you will ever be in this same boat again.

    Being Better Prepared Down the Road

    Finally, along with education comes a desire to do better as one moves forward.

    If how you’ve handled your finances at times concerns you, let a tax issue give you incentive to improve your financial dealings.

    The one thing you don’t want is to have tax issues become the norm in your life, especially expensive ones.

    With better preparation and sound decisions, you can put tax issues in the rearview mirror.

     

  • Three Tips For Better Marketing For Lawyers

    The world of online marketing is a place for everyone, even lawyers. However, when you have a field that you specialize in that is so distinct it can often be harder to market and get the word out to people. The key is to keep your marketing scheme professional and on point.

    It’s likely this is one of a few articles you are reading on the subject of marketing, and you already know that even as a lawyer social media can be a great asset. So can blogging. Here are a few of the things you want to make sure you’re doing in order to best market your business and your skills.

    Market To The Right People

    The first step in successfully marketing any business is to make sure that you are marketing to the right people. As a lawyer, it helps to stick with what you specialize in. If you mostly do work for people planning their final wills, then you want to write blog posts and share info on creating a will and who it will benefit.

    As far as a specific demographic, decide who will be most likely to want or need your services. If you are a lawyer that works strictly with celebrities and high profile cases you won’t need to spend as much time on Facebook talking to the little guy. However, if the general public is who you cater to, and a certain age bracket, social media may be where your bread and butter can be found.

    Decide the ages of the people that are most likely to use your services. Do you cater more to men or women, or equally to both? Decide all of these things before you start your marketing plan in motion simply to help you save time and money.

    Cover Your Ground

    Once you’ve determined what you specialize in, which could be many things. Some lawyers do it all, and maybe that’s you. Who do you want to reach with your services? Find out how to reach them.

    While so much is done online these days, if the older demographic is your key source of income you may want to consider doing some offline marketing. Many people in older generations still enjoy picking up the local paper and spend far less time online. Put ads in local papers, and even the phone book, if most of your demographic is in their senior years.

    Google AdWords is a must if you really want to get noticed on this popular search engine, and you only pay when people click on your link. By working with pay-per-click advertising options you open your business up to more people.

    Don’t Neglect Blogging And Social Media

    Just because your business is of the legal persuasion doesn’t mean that you should neglect the small outlets online that help so many businesses garner new clients and customers. Even as a law firm or lawyer blogging and using social media can really benefit your business. Blogging allows your business a chance to give potential clients more info about what you can do for them.

    Give them suggestions of why they may need a lawyer when it comes to preparing their will, and finish with a call-to-action that suggests they contact you for the next step in the process. Use your blog to fill them in on the latest popular cases and why the info from them can be beneficial

    Social media is a good way to reach younger generations, which is ideal if you are a divorce lawyer or someone that can help people out of a DUI or drug charge.

  • Professional Attitude: How to Deal with Elderly Clients

    There are special considerations for clients of all ages, but particularly for seniors. As people age, their bodies begin to shut down and they become underappreciated. That would be incredibly frustrating for anyone, no matter their age.

    As a result, it’s often difficult to please senior clients. Sometimes, they resist legal advice. Other times, their mental capacity makes it difficult for them to be trusted with sensitive information. No matter your struggles with elderly clients, it’s important to treat every situation with patience and deference.

    Here are some suggestions for handling your elderly clients.

    1. Check on a Professional Diagnosis

    Though you may not be privy to medical information regarding your client, you can speak with their family members about any official diagnoses. Sometimes older clients act out because of a medical or mental condition. Understanding the factors that affect your client’s mental and physical well-being can help you provide better service.

    1. Don’t Rise to Stubborn and Aggressive Behavior

    Oftentimes, when older clients act out, it’s because they want attention. They’re testing your limits to see if you’ll crack. Being patient and reacting slowly in these situations will keep you from landing yourself in a troubling place. It can also lead to gaining your client’s trust.

    Other times, your elderly client will react aggressively because of a mental or medical condition. Keeping calm and remaining patient will prevent a bad situation from getting worse, particularly when the client isn’t being difficult on purpose.

    1. Switch Roles

    Put yourself in the client’s shoes for just a moment. When people age, it’s easy to imagine that they’ve lost their soundness of mind, even if they’re as sharp as ever. As a result, you treat them like they’re less intelligent.

    Remind yourself of how you would want to be treated in a given situation and respond accordingly. If they ask for clarification or guidance on something you’ve discussed with them, you can slow down and answer their questions. But don’t automatically assume they don’t understand you.

    1. Listen Intently

    Another common trait of elderly patients is talkativeness. They’re often lonely and feel the need to talk excessively. Instead of ignoring them and trying to move on, slow down and listen. You’ll learn a lot about your clients and their needs by listening to what they have to say instead of talking over them.

    Also, practice the art of listening when your clients express needs, frustrations, or special requests. You can’t help your client if you don’t take note of what they want. Even if it takes a little extra time, be there for your clients when they need someone to talk to.

    1. Consult with Family

    When mental and physical conditions make it difficult for your clients to communicate effectively, make sure you talk to their family. However, do this knowing that family members can often be unreliable narrators. Sometimes family members believe they have their loved one’s best interests at heart, but they don’t quite hit the mark.

    1. Use Traditional Methods of Communication

    Facebook, email, and other digital forms of communication can be difficult for the elderly to understand. You’ll need to pull out old-school forms of communication here with mailed letters and telephone calls. Some people have email, but there’s no guarantee they’ll use it.

    Above all, don’t forget that your elderly clients are human beings who need legal help just like your other clients. You’ll have your challenges along the way, but keeping this in mind will make your elderly clients feel more valued and help the process go smoother.