The Law: My First True Love

Your Teen Driver Has Been in an Accident—Now What?

When your teenage child gets in an accident, and they were driving, it’s natural to be in some shock. However, once the shock passes, if your teenager was hurt, you might start to feel that an auto injury claim would be valid. Even though you weren’t present, you can help your teen to build a strong case. Here’s how.

Take Them to the Doctor

Your teen may say that they feel fine, even if they have sustained injuries, but it’s best to have a doctor look at them and confirm that they’re okay. Even if they don’t need to have a serious procedure, their being seen leaves a paper trail that proves that your child did seek medical attention for injuries. Not only that, but some injuries are not immediately recognizable by those who aren’t medical professionals; let a doctor rule out a hemorrhage, internal bleeding, or a concussion, for instance.

Have Them Write a Report

While the police might have been called to the scene of the accident and can provide an official report, it is also smart for your teenager to write a brief report of their own observations and actions. The report should include information about what was happening before the accident and details about the weather, the condition of the road, and anything else they might forget as time passes.

It’s important to remember that to avoid getting into trouble, teenagers might feel the urge to hide information or lie about certain details. They might not want you to know that they were with a friend you don’t like, for instance. You are likely to know your teen very well and know when they aren’t being truthful, so encourage them to be honest with everyone involved; you never know when a minor detail could be helpful to the case.

Monitor Their Social Media

Teenagers are big fans of social media and are often online talking to their friends and others online through their profiles. It is vital that your teen knows that they should not be mentioning anything about their case. Not only can rumors fly, but social-media posts and pictures could cause problems. Investigators from insurance companies are starting to research through the Internet more often; if they come across your teenager bragging or talking about how great they feel after their accident, that could be bad for their claim. If your teenager is posting pictures that make them look like an unsavory character, someone could claim that it’s reasonable to assume that your child was at fault.

While you might not want to shut down or deactivate their social-media profiles, tell them to only allow close personal friends to view what they are saying and remind them that what they’re saying and posting could be seen by everyone.

You can help your teen driver to behave wisely after they’ve been in an accident. Retain an auto injury lawyer, such as one from Knafo Law Offices, who can help your teenager’s claim to be successful.

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Do Grandparents Have Visitation Rights?

Whether it is through divorce, custody decisions, or arguments with the parents, grandparents sometimes find themselves with no access to their grandchildren. All they want to do is see their grandchildren growing up, before they have no time left. It leads to them wondering if they would have visitation rights. Here’s a look at the question, as it isn’t a straight yes or no answer.

It Depends on the Circumstances

There are certain circumstances where the grandparents won’t have any rights. One of those is in the case of adoption. The birth grandparents would lose their rights, just like the birth parents do. Grandparents may be able to strike deals with the adoptive parents, but there are no legal requirements.

Cases of abuse in the family may lead to grandparents losing all rights. This will usually be the parents of the abuser or someone the courts believe will put the child in danger.

In most other cases and most states, there are rights awarded to grandparents. Court-mandated visitation may be set if parents and grandparents can’t come to a decision.

Rights Unconstitutional

There are cases where the rights to grandparents have been deemed unconstitutional. This happened in 2000 by the United States Supreme Court. In the case of Troxel v. Granville, the Court ruled that Washington statute violated the parents’ rights, and rights of the grandparents cannot go against the parents’ rights to raise their own children.

Based on this, Washington and other states made changes to their statues. You’ll need to check the statutes for your specific state to find out the details of your visitation rights.

Considering the Needs of the Child

Like with all custody battles and visitation cases, the needs of the children will always be put first when it comes to grandparents. The court will look at whether grandparents and parents are able to offer the children everything needed or if there are dangers with the visits. Grandparents must convince the court that it is in the best interest of the child to allow visitation by showing that they are able and fit to take care of the children. This includes living arrangements, income, and psychological well-being.

Prior relationships with children tend to be considered in these circumstances. The mental state and age of the child may also be considered, as judges will not want to put unnecessary pressure on children by going through court cases.

There is no instant right to visitation for grandparents, the parents decide if the grandparents can see the child in most cases. However, there are instances where grandparents can go to court to fight for their rights to have or see their grandchildren.

To learn more, contact a law firm like Thomas & Associates, PC

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Two Defenses That May Help You Avoid Being Convicted Of DUI

Defending against a DUI charge can be challenging, especially if the prosecuting attorney has evidence that appears to support his or her case (e.g. breathalyzer readings). However, there are a number of defenses that can be employed to help you avoid being convicted of the crime or that may result in you being convicted of a lesser charge. Here are two DUI defenses that could possibly help your case.

Medical Condition

One defense that could help you avoid a DUI conviction is showing you have a medical condition that either only made it appear you were intoxicated or significantly skewed the results of any tests you were required to take to show how intoxicated you were. For instance, diabetes can cause a person to appear to be drunk due to the effects of low blood sugar levels and has been known to negatively influence breathalyzer readings because the person’s body produces acetone, which the breathalyzer records as alcohol.

Using this defense effectively involves producing medical records showing you were diagnosed with the condition and how it impacts your body. For instance, it can be difficult for people with COPD to blow into the breathalyzer machine properly due to reduced lung function. This can lead to a false reading. Producing a note from your doctor discussing your diagnosis may be enough to get the reading thrown out and the case dismissed, if that was the prosecutor’s strongest piece of evidence.

Extenuating Circumstances

Another possible defense to the DUI charge is to show there were extenuating circumstances in your case that essentially required you to drive while intoxicated. For instance, if you were about to be a victim of a crime and the only way to get out of the situation was to drive a vehicle, then the court may take that into consideration when determining whether to continue with the case or not.

With this type of defense, the circumstances would have to be pretty compelling. Additionally, you may be required to show proof of what occurred that led to you driving intoxicated even though you knew it was illegal. For example, regarding the previous example, you would need to produce a police report supporting your story. Even if you’re not able to avoid a conviction, the court may opt to reduce your sentence based on the nature of the extenuating circumstances.

For more information about possible DUI defenses or assistance with handling a case, contact a criminal law attorney.

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Who Is Liable For Prescription Drug Overdose Deaths?

The word “drug” has developed a negative connotation over the decades. Illegal substances typically leap to mind, but the term “Drug Store” can conjure images of relieving cold medicine and painkillers.

Legal or illegal, any drug can be deadly if taken in excess. When it comes to elicit and illegal drugs, blame is usually easy to assign. When it comes to prescription drugs, however, the question of who is liable becomes difficult to answer.

The Facts

Keep in mind the differences between over-the-counter and prescription drugs. Over-the-counter drugs are drugs that can be purchased like any item in a store, with no license or permission.

The issue with prescription drugs is that they require authorization from a doctor and distribution from a pharmacist. As with anything, the more parties involved, the more complicated things get.

The Issues

Doctors have a duty to protect their patients, which sometimes requires issuing a drug that can be dangerous if abused. There are a number of factors to consider; is the drug consistent with the patient’s medical condition, how much should be given, could the drug be used for illegitimate purposes, and so on.

The question of who is liable could very well depend on individual situations. For example, if a doctor knows that a patient has a history of addiction, yet issues something like OxyContin, the doctor will most likely be found guilty of negligence. However, if that same patient is legitimately suffering from severe pain and, even after consulting the family, the doctor prescribes the drug anyway, liability could shift.

The Truth

Unfortunately, the only certainty is that overdose from prescription drugs is becoming a more pressing issue in America as people drown in prescription drugs and the culprits could very well be Americans themselves. Arguably, this culture has become more and more fixated on having everything instantly, which includes cures.

At times, a patient may want a drug for a problem that was caused by another drug. Blaming big business has grown easy, and there are some who like to blame pharmaceutical companies due to the large kickback they get from sales. As Forbes contends, many blame the pharmaceutical industry for the current heroin epidemic in the United States.

If you or a loved one has suffered from an accident related to prescription drugs, the best thing you can do is consult with a lawyer. When the offender could be anyone from the doctor to the pharmacist to the patient themselves, professional advice is always recommended. Visit http://www.vanblk.com for more information.   

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Proving Your Pooch Did Not Bite Someone

If you received word that your dog is being blamed for biting someone as they walked past your property, and you know for sure that they did not cause this injury, you will undoubtedly want to clear their name from any wrongdoing. The person who had become injured will most likely press charges against you in an attempt to receive compensation to pay for their medical bills. If however, your dog wasn’t the one that had caused this injury you will need to rely on an adept lawyer and some wit to clear your dog’s reputation in a court of law.

Rely On Surveillance To Prove Innocence

If you already have cameras on your property, you will have footage available to show to a court of law proving your dog’s innocence in the entire matter. If however, it is your word against another person’s word, you can try setting up surveillance cameras on your property to show how your dog responds to people when it is alone in your yard.

Taping your dog to show their demeanor when being confronted by both people they know and strangers, can be beneficial in show the response they have in most situations. You can have someone provoke the dog slightly to see if they respond in a defensive way as well. This information can be analyzed by a pet behaviorist to help prove your dog’s personality would not be one likely to end in an attack.

Retain Documentation About Your Dog’s Personality

Having professional opinions regarding your dog’s personality can help prove they are not trained to attack or that they display signs of aggression. Take a trip to your dog’s veterinarian to have a full physical done and have the doctor give you documentation showing they do not display unfavorable patterns in they way they handle situations. Consider bringing your dog to a training program to get a professional opinion on your dog’s behavior from a trainer.

Get accounts from the people your dog sees regularly as well, including those who stop by the home only periodically, as this will show your dog is not spooked by those it comes into contact with only once in a while. Neighbors are also great witnesses and they may have seen something suspicious during the time of the incident that proves they had inflicted the injuries on themselves in some other manner in an attempt to get monetary compensation.

Rely On Your Attorney To Lead You In The Right Direction

Having a reputable attorney to represent you and your dog in a court of law is the best way to ensure a positive outcome. It is difficult to prove whether a dog is at fault without having proper representation. A lawyer, like LeBaron & Jensen, P.C., seasoned in previous dog bite cases will know the specific laws for your state, helping you to come up with a plan of action to use in proving your dog’s innocence. They will use past cases to their advantage in coming up with an angle to prove the charges are unjust, helping you to obtain a cleared name of any wrongdoing as a result.

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Divorce 101: 3 Tips To Prove That Moving Is Worth It

A divorce is often a transition period in life. With it might come new opportunities in other cities or states. Unfortunately, moving with children during a divorce can be tricky. If you cannot work out an agreement with your spouse, you might be required to attend a court hearing.

While this might sound scary, it isn’t necessarily a reason to fret. During this hearing, you’ll just need to prove that the move will benefit both you and your children. So how can do you this? Here are three tips:

1. Better Financial Opportunities

Moving to improve your financial situation is a valid reason. Unfortunately, you will need to prove this to the court. The best way to do this is to gather all information you can about your new position and present it. Ideally, have documents handy that state your new salary. If you have a contract with your new job, you should bring that as well. These documents will prove to the court that moving is beneficial to you, your children, and your family.

2. Improved Support System

Undergoing a divorce without a support system can be devastating. Without a good support system in place, you might wind up missing important moments in your child’s life. You might also struggle to make ends meet. Fortunately, moving to be closer to family is a valid reason that most courts will recognize. While you might have to argue, there are several good points you could bring up such as improved child care, family assistance, and better family relationships.

3. A Fresh Start

Another valid reason to move after a divorce is to get a fresh start. Whether the divorce was messy or you simply have ties to the area you are living, moving to get away and start fresh is a valid reason. However, you will need to prove to the court that the move will be beneficial. There are a number of ways you can do this, but some good reasons include great community activities, better jobs, improved medical facilities, or even better schools. All of these can be used to argue your case that moving will be good for both you and your children.

As you can see, there are several good reasons to move after a divorce. While proving that a move will beneficial can be tough, it’s not impossible. With these tips and a skilled divorce attorney, such as Kenneth J. Molnar Attorney, you can prove to the court—and your spouse—that moving will be good for everyone involved.

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4 Steps To Take After You Slip And Fall In A Convenience Store

A quick trip into a convenience store to pay for gas or purchase a snack can become a disaster if you slip and fall inside the store and are injured. If negligence on the part of the store caused the accident, you may be entitled to a financial settlement to pay for your medical bills and lost wages due to missing work because of your injury. In some situations, you may also be awarded money to compensate for any pain and suffering the injury caused you. But if you want to get the settlement that you deserve, you need to be diligent. Take the following steps after you are injured in a slip and fall accident at a convenience store:

Document the Scene of the Accident

The camera on your cell phone is a great resource after you slip and fall. Take numerous photos of the area, both wide shots and close ups. If you slipped on a floor that had just been mopped but there was no wet floor sign in the area, you want to document that. Same goes for spilled soda or flooring that was in disrepair. The more detailed photos you can get that show what caused your slip, the better. These photos can serve as important evidence to help prove that the convenience store was responsible for your fall. 

Notify the Manager on Duty

After falling in a convenience store, it is important to notify the manager on duty of what happened so he or she can fill out an incidence report. This report will document all of the details of what happened, including the date, time, and what caused your fall. Make sure you do not leave the store without a copy of the incidence report for your own records.

Go See a Doctor

A slip and fall accident can case serious injuries all over your body, so it is important to see your doctor as soon as possible after the accident so you can get treatment. Medical care is very important for your recovery, and your medical records from the visits may also be considered when it is time to discuss your settlement from the convenience store’s insurance company.

Contact a Personal Injury Lawyer

Settling slip and fall accident cases can be quite complicated, since you have to prove that the store was negligent. It is in your best interest to hire an experienced personal injury lawyer if you want to get a fair settlement. Your lawyer will be able to build up a case proving that the store was at fault by using your photos, the incidence report, and video of the fall if it was captured by a surveillance camera. After your lawyer proves fault, he or she will have the skills needed to negotiate on your behalf to secure a good settlement. 

For more information, talk with a personal injury lawyer or visit websites like http://robertkanerlaw.com.

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