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Are You and a Neighbor Arguing Over Who Owns What? This Is What You Should Know about Adverse Possession

Posted by on 7:36 am in Uncategorized | Comments Off on Are You and a Neighbor Arguing Over Who Owns What? This Is What You Should Know about Adverse Possession

Property ownership is often seen as the key to wealth—which is why ownership disputes between neighbors can quickly become contentious. What happens if you’ve been using a piece of property for years without disturbance when a neighbor suddenly tells you that you’re on the wrong side of a boundary line? This is what you should know. You may have gained the right to the property through adverse possession. Adverse possession is sometimes known as “squatter’s rights,” and it’s a legal way of gaining ownership of a piece of property over a period time. In order to acquire ownership this way, you have to meet certain conditions: Your possession has to be hostile (without the consent of the true owner). You have to actually control the property in some way. You have to use the property openly. Your possession has to continue for a specific period of time, as prescribed by law, without interruption. The exact length of time that you have to possess a piece of property this way in order for it to change hands varies widely by state. In Pennsylvania, for example, you have to wait 21 years for adverse possession to take effect. In Rhode Island, however, you can gain ownership in as few as 10 years. There may be some additional requirements specific to your state. In addition to the basic requirements, some states have additional rules that control ownership through adverse possession. For example, in Oregon, adverse possession can result in a change of ownership if you honestly and reasonably believed that you were the actual owner of the property. For example, imagine that you wanted to build a shed in your backyard. You and your neighbor have always believed that a line of bushes marked the boundary between your properties. You build the shed and don’t think anything more of it until your neighbor sells his or her property twenty years later. Your new neighbor, however, has the property surveyed and informs you that your shed is three feet over the boundary line. The odds are high that a court would not force you to move the shed after all that time. In other states, you can gain adverse possession only if you meet all of the regular criteria plus pay the taxes. In states with this rule, the time limit required to obtain possession is often shortened. California, for example, will allow you to claim adverse possession under those circumstances in only 5 years. Adverse possession claims can involve a few inches or they can involve large patches of land and houses. If you find yourself in that situation, contact a real estate attorney today. To get legal help with adverse possession issues, go to websites like this one and contact a real estate...

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What To Do If You’re Far From Home And Too Drowsy To Drive

Posted by on 6:22 am in Uncategorized | Comments Off on What To Do If You’re Far From Home And Too Drowsy To Drive

If you’ve ever had to stay awake for a long time and drive, you know how frightening it can be to suddenly realize you can’t remember the past few miles that you drove. Driving drowsy is dangerous (and illegal in states like New Jersey), and if you’ve had anything to drink beforehand — even a tiny bit — or taken something like cold medicine, you could actually find yourself charged with a DUI instead of just reckless driving if the police mistake your drowsy driving for drunk or drugged driving. Rather than risk a DWD or DUI charge, do what you can to find a place to sleep. Obvious but Not Always Possible If you can afford cab fare home or have the money to check into a motel to nap, do one of those, of course. However, sometimes people attending conventions in town reserve all the motel rooms, or you don’t have enough money or credit for a long cab ride home and then back the next day to get your car. Or maybe you’re in the middle of nowhere on a road trip. If you encounter these problems, you still have options. Home-Sharing Services With vacation rental services becoming more and more common, you can try looking up rooms in the area. There are bound to be a few open rooms in the area if you’re in a major city. These rooms are often cheaper than rooms at local motels, and you can often instantly book private rooms through some of these services. Couch Surfing Services Related to the home-sharing services are couch-sharing or crashing services. For an even cheaper fee, you get to crash on someone’s couch, which is obviously better than crashing your car. The drawback is that you won’t have privacy in a house full of strangers if you’re sleeping on the couch. Truck Stops Truck stops that have a gas station, restaurant, store, and shower facilities often have large parking lots holding not only trucks, but also RVs and cars. It’s best to be discreet; ensure you do not park near trucks lest it turn out you’re taking up a truck parking spot. You can grab a quick nap in your car in many of these lots. This is a great option if you’re near a smaller town or in the middle of a multistate drive as truck stops are located all over the country. Do listen to your gut. If you feel the truck stop is not safe, don’t stay there. But many are very busy and have good security. Pay the truck stop back by eating at the restaurant or buying something from the store. Campgrounds If you find yourself nodding off near camping facilities, try stopping there. A low fee can get you a campsite for the night, which is better than nothing. Park the car and go to sleep. Don’t assume that a cup of coffee will wake you up enough to drive. If you’ve started nodding off behind the wheel, you must stop driving. The local police and everyone around you will be grateful you did. Contact a DUI attorney, like Hart Law Offices, PC, if you do end up with a...

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What To Do When You Need A Personal Injury Lawyer But Are Short On Cash

Posted by on 7:18 am in Uncategorized | Comments Off on What To Do When You Need A Personal Injury Lawyer But Are Short On Cash

When you’ve been injured as a result of the negligence of another party, it’s important for you to get the monetary restitution that you need for medical bills and for your pain and suffering.  A good personal injury lawyer can help you get this compensation, but you may not have enough money to retain their services.  However, there are options available to you that can help cover the costs.  Use this information to learn more about what you can do to get legal representation when you’re low on cash. Seek Out Pro Bono Services There are a number of personal injury lawyers that work on a pro bono basis.  This means that they will take on your case for free, and you won’t have to pay anything out-of-pocket. Lawyers who offer pro bono services typically do this to help low-income individuals gain access to legal assistance that may be out of their monetary reach.  Some of these attorneys do not widely publicize these free services, so it’s important for you to be willing to call around to different firms until you find one who is staffed with a lawyer that will represent you free of charge. If you aren’t able to find a pro bono lawyer after calling local firms, you may want to use a website such as this one to find out if there is a pro bono lawyer available to you.   Consider Getting A Micro Loan Another option that you should consider when you need legal help is a micro loan.  These are loans extended to you for legal help that can be paid back over time.  They are very valuable in a pinch because the loan is typically not income restricted, and you should be able to get the funds in a relatively short period of time. You can check with your local legal aid society to get more information about the lenders in your community who extend legal micro loans to the public. You’ll be able to use the money to retain a lawyer and cover a significant portion of the legal fees. Although you will need to repay the loan, you can talk to your lender about a workable repayment plan that fits into your budget. Don’t miss out on the chance to get legal aid because you don’t have the money.  Use this information as a guide that can help you get the legal care that you deserve. For more information, look to Henry C. Devening or other personal injury lawyers in your...

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What To Know About Common Law Marriages

Posted by on 6:23 am in Uncategorized | Comments Off on What To Know About Common Law Marriages

Many people believe that two people living together for a certain length of time are automatically involved in a common law marriage. In fact, cohabitation is just one of several requirements that are used to determine the legality of a common law marriage. Read on to learn the full story about common law marriages. Common Law Marriage Guidelines Not every state recognizes common law marriage, and even in those that do you must meet the requirements. While the most important requirement is cohabitation, there are no guidelines about length of cohabitation. Other requirements, which can vary by state, are: If you are unable to fill the requirements to be legally married in your state, you cannot be common law married either. In short, you must not be: ~ Under minimum legal age. ~ Married to someone else already. ~ Be incapacitated or not of a sound mind. Additionally, both parties must be of the same mind and: 1. Have the intention and forethought to live as a married couple. 2. “Hold themselves out” to be a married couple. This means that both people consistently represent themselves to family, friends, the community, and their place of worship as married. Common Law Dissolution Couples who hold themselves to be in a common law marriage cannot simply move out when they decide to part ways. If you have true common law marriage, and you live in a state that recognizes that form of marriage, you must follow the same legal procedures to divorce that is required of traditionally married couples. There is actually no such thing as a common law divorce. Issues can arise when only one party in the common law marriage alleges the existence of the marriage. While this issue can arise due to misunderstandings, often one party doesn’t want to go through the trouble and expense of divorcing. Issues with debt and property division and the need for alimony (spousal support) can sometimes be another factor for one party desiring a quick ending to relationship without the need for a legally-binding divorce decree. If the issue of common law marriage has to be decided by a family court judge, he will ascertain the answers to the following questions: How long did the couple lived together? Did they share a common last name? Did they raise children together? Did they own property together? Did they file joint tax returns? It should be noted that the question of common law marriage is irrelevant to the child support issue, since there is no need to be legally married for child support orders to passed down in family court. If you are ending a relationship and need more information about common law marriages in your state, contact a divorce attorney (like those at LaCroix & Hand PC) to learn about your rights.  ...

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Did Your Anti-Deoressent Medication Cause A Birth Defect? Get A Lawyer

Posted by on 8:23 am in Uncategorized | Comments Off on Did Your Anti-Deoressent Medication Cause A Birth Defect? Get A Lawyer

If you were on an anti-depression medication while trying to conceive and your obstetrician recommended that you didn’t stop taking it, and your child now has a learning disability, you need to contact a personal injury lawyer. There are many different potential causes of the learning disabilities, or physical abnormalities and many anti-depressant medications have been linked to speech, mental and physical development conditions. You want to take action quickly and meet with a personal injury lawyer to go over your malpractice suit. Here is the information you should have with you for your first consult. Diagnosis from the Pediatrician or Specialist Have your child’s pediatrician or medical specialist write a statement with the condition that your child has, and what type of lifelong problems it could cause. You should also have the physician include what type of therapy and treatment will be needed to help the child, what could have caused the problems, and if your child could be affected by the medication permanently. Proof of Medication Prescription You should be able to get your records from the pharmacy you use for proof of the medication you were taking, how much of it, and for how long. With the prescription information it shows the medical professional that prescribed it to you. If you were apprehensive about still taking it but your obstetrician thought it was best, you have the information to show they gave you the prescription to take the medication. Financial Statements How much has the medical treatments for your child’s condition cost you already? You’ll want to get all of the bills from specialists and appointments outside of wellness visits that were a direct result of the problem caused by taking the medication. You want to get reimbursed for the costs you’ve already had to pay, and also for the future expenses you will have because of taking the medication. When you are pregnant and your doctor tells you that it may be more harmful to your body to go off the medication being taken for depression, you trust your medical professional to make the right decision. If your child is now the one who paid the price, and they have a developmental problem because you took the medication, you need to hire a lawyer (such as Steven A. Crifase Ltd) and take action. You should get paid for not only your monetary stresses, but for the mental stress it has caused you, and the stress it will cause your child in the...

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Checking The Probate: Information You Might Find With A Probate Lawyer’s Help

Posted by on 10:48 am in Uncategorized | Comments Off on Checking The Probate: Information You Might Find With A Probate Lawyer’s Help

As an heir who stands to inherit something from your parents’ estate, you may be curious about what you will and will not receive. If your parents choose not to share that information with you while they are still alive, it may be possible to have a probate lawyer check the wills for you. Sometimes the lawyer cannot disclose the details of the will so long as the testator (i.e., the owner/creator of the will) is still alive. You may be able to ask your probate lawyer some less-invasive questions that he or she could answer with a simple “yes” or “no,” but until your parents pass away you may not know much else about your inheritance. Here are a few things you might be able to learn through your lawyer. Is the Will an Open Document on Record? An open document is one that allows just about anybody to read it. It is unlikely that anyone with substantial means, or at least enough means to bequeath it to their heirs, would have an open will on record. However, if your lawyer finds that the will is an open document, you may be able to view a copy of it. Have You Been Removed from the Will or Specifically Excluded/Disinherited? If your parents have threatened to disinherit you and remove you from their will, depending on the laws in your state and whether or not your parents would allow another lawyer to look at their wills, you may be able to find out if they have carried out their threats. Otherwise, your lawyer and your parents’ lawyer(s) cannot disclose if you are excluded or not, at least not until both of your parents have passed away and cannot contest your investigation into the terms of their wills. Can You Find out Ahead of Time How Your Parents Have Divided Their Property and Assets? Since most wills are set up so that final debts owed and funeral costs are paid via the remaining assets of the deceased, it would be nearly impossible to figure out “who gets what” ahead of time. Many parents may share with their adult children about who gets the house, the boat, etc., but financials are entirely different because of the length of life your parents may have and the final bills they leave behind. Additionally, it may not be possible to know how assets are divided since wills can be changed as often as your parents like or feel the need to do so.  If you’re looking for a probate attorney in your area, visit David R Webb...

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3 Important Tips When You Have Been Arrested For A Second DUI

Posted by on 3:15 am in Uncategorized | Comments Off on 3 Important Tips When You Have Been Arrested For A Second DUI

If you have previously been convicted or have plead guilty to a charge of DUI, which is driving under the influence of drugs or alcohol or a similar charge, a second conviction can put you in a very difficult position. For instance, it is fairly common for jail time to be required with a second offense, while your first may have required only probation, fines and other punishments that did not directly threaten your freedom. Therefore, you have a very limited time period in which to make some very important decisions, and it is essential to protect your rights, starting immediately after your arrest. It is also important to note that the time limit from your first arrest or conviction for DUI may impact the outcome for this legal case. #1-Refuse Or Later Question The Field Sobriety Tests The field sobriety tests administered by law enforcement officers are known to be flawed in several ways. For example, recent sources have indicated a failure rate in some field sobriety tests. Many lawyers advise declining the field sobriety tests and only submitting to the more accurate blood tests later. Doing so may limit your driving privileges immediately, but can also help keep you out of jail later on. The benefits may outweigh the risk, as a failed sobriety test can be used against you in court. Regardless, be sure to follow the next guideline. #2-Consult With An Attorney Without Delay It seems obvious that you need a lawyer, especially for serious case like the one you are dealing with. However, legal representation is even more important with a DUI or recurrent DUI, because of the possibility of mandatory jail time. Therefore, do not wait to have a lawyer appointed for you by the state, unless you have no other choice. Your lawyer can address the legality of stopping or arresting you, which could void or limit the charges you are facing, if error or wrongdoing is found. Find a good lawyer and remember that many are willing to work out payment plans, if money is a problem. Otherwise, you could permanently lose your driver’s license within days of the arrest, not the conviction. In addition, if you happen to be on probation for your previous DUI or another charge, a new arrest could void that arrangement; and your legal situation could quickly become even more complicated. #3-Be Aware Of The Sentencing Guidelines For Your State It will also be helpful to remember that the arrest and sentencing guidelines for DUI or similar offenses are not typically federally imposed and instead are determined on a state-by-state basis. That means that each state has the right to determine appropriate punishments for a second offense and choose how long the state can look back on previous offenses when deciding what punishments for secondary DUI offenses will be. Most states expect jail time for a second offense of this nature. In addition, retaining any driving privileges, even for work, can be challenging. An aggressive legal defense is often necessary, in order for individuals charged with this type of offense more than once to retain their...

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Considering A Rent To Own Property Contract? Hire A Real Estate Lawyer First

Posted by on 3:15 am in Uncategorized | Comments Off on Considering A Rent To Own Property Contract? Hire A Real Estate Lawyer First

If you are considering a rent to own contract on a home for sale but you aren’t sure if you understand all of the terms and conditions in the agreement, meet with a real estate lawyer. If you don’t want to pay the commission fees associated with a real estate agent and there is no need to do so, instead you can just pay for a consultation with a lawyer and have the document inspected. Here are a few things you’ll want to talk with the lawyer about, and things you should consider before you agree to purchase the home. Get an Inspection and Appraisal If you have the money, you should get the house inspected and appraised, so you know it’s in good condition and that it’s worth the agreed amount of money you are going to pay the owner over time. You can call a home inspection company to have this done, and you could even have a real estate professional or actual appraiser appraise the house. Look at comparable listings around the property to see what the sale prices are, and compare the square footage and materials throughout the house. What Portion Goes Towards the Purchase? The seller isn’t going to give you all of the rent towards the cost of the home, and they will give you a percentage. They may have to pay for the taxes and other details, depending on what the two of you agree on, and they want to make a profit since they are taking a risk. Talk with your lawyer to see if the percentage of rent going towards the purchase is fair or agreeable. Late Payments and Contract Details Does the document detail what will happen if you have late payments, or what will happen if you fall behind on the lease? It may say that if you are 30 days late the contract is void, meaning you won’t be eligible to own the house for the agreed price, and none of the money you already put down will go towards the purchase.   These are just a few of the things your lawyer is going to go over in the contract, and they may see other flaws or areas that are of concern for you as the buyer. If you want to purchase a home that is rent to own and you feel the house is in your budget, talk with a real estate lawyer like Iannello Anderson to ensure the contract is...

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Mistakes You Might Be Making That May Send Your Loved Ones To Probate Court

Posted by on 4:54 am in Uncategorized | Comments Off on Mistakes You Might Be Making That May Send Your Loved Ones To Probate Court

As you work on estate planning activities, you may start to become aware that your loved ones will have to go to probate court after you pass away. In order to avoid that, you need to make sure your final wishes are as clear as possible. Here are some mistakes you might be making right now that could send your family to probate court in the future. Not Setting Retirement Account to “Pay on Death” You may not realize that your family might need to head to probate court simply because your retirement account remains in your name. That could cause a dispute among family members about who is entitled to that account. An easy way to avoid probate is to set your retirement accounts to “pay on death.” That way, when you die, any money in a retirement account will go to your beneficiaries automatically. This can be a relief to your beneficiaries, as they don’t have to do anything or go to court to ensure they receive those funds.  Not Having Joint Ownership Agreements in Place Do you own a business with someone else? If you do, they might assume that your interests in the business go to them in the event of your death. However, you might have different plans and want your interests in the business to go to your eldest child. This kind of dispute could cause your family to go to probate court. Another problem could occur if you do want your part of the business to go to your business partner, but your family disagrees. To avoid these problems, it is a good idea to formally arrange joint ownership agreements. That way, after your death, your interests in the business will directly go to the person named in the agreement. You can enter into a joint ownership agreement with your business partner or other beneficiaries that you choose. You should also speak to everyone involved so that there is no confusion about what your wishes are. Joint ownership agreements can also be a smart choice when you own a piece of property and want to leave to a specific person. If they own it with you through this kind of agreement now, there will be no need to discuss the issue in probate court. Not Updating All Documents After you’ve completed all the necessary planning to put things in place for your family after you pass away, you might think your work is done. However, your family might still be required to go to probate court because you did not keep your documents updated. Births, marriages and other life events happen and you must ensure that your will, living trust and other documents are frequently updated to reflect your wishes at any given time.  Use the advice laid out above to assist you in planning your estate so that your family stays out of probate court after you pass away. To be more confident, seek out an expert in probate law like George M Cappello,...

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3 Tips To Stay Sane And Support Your Child During A Custody Battle

Posted by on 5:50 pm in Uncategorized | Comments Off on 3 Tips To Stay Sane And Support Your Child During A Custody Battle

If you are going through a divorce, chances are you’ve got a lot on your mind. Regardless of your reason for divorce, things can get much more stressful when it comes to battling for custody of your children. As your custody mediation approaches, it is important to keep your children’s best interests in mind and not let your actions be clouded by your resentment or negative feelings towards your spouse. Listed below are three tips that will help you stay sane and support your child during a custody battle.  1. Don’t Bad Mouth Your Spouse (In Front of Anyone) Bad mouthing: It makes sense why it happens. You’re hurt, you’re angry, you’re stressed. It’s easy to let your feelings get the better of you and let something slip about your spouse. No matter what you’re saying, if it’s about something they did or didn’t do or a characteristic you dislike, in the end it just reflects poorly on you. Children repeat things, and what you said is likely to get back to your spouse. Additionally, bad mouthing your spouse in front of the Guardian ad Litem can make you appear bitter, angry, or unstable, causing him or her to question your parenting skills. 2. Continue (or Start to) Co-Parent If you have children, it is important that you and your spouse stay consistent when it comes to parenting. It might be tempting to try to be the “fun parent”, especially if your time with your children is limited. However, inconsistency in discipline, schedules, etc., will only confuse your child and might contribute to behavior problems, which are already common during divorces. Co-parenting will help your children understand that, even though your and your spouse are divorcing, you both still love them and want your relationships to remain the same.  3. Come to Mediation Prepared Show up to your mediation prepared with a reasonable custody and time-sharing proposal and a calendar that shows important dates, and yours and your children’s schedules. Showing up without a clear idea of what you want, or letting your personal feelings towards your spouse overshadow what is fair and reasonable, will not reflect well on you and your parenting.  You might not get the exact custody agreement you want, but do your best to remain professional and flexible. The main goal in custody mediation is to make the decision that is best for your children. Getting a divorce certainly isn’t easy, but following the tips above will help you keep it together and help your children through this difficult time.  Contact a legal office like Novenstern Fabriani & Gaudio, LLP for more...

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