Basic Grandparents’ Rights to Custody and Visitation

Posted by on Jun 19, 2015 in Family Law | 0 comments

Most issues in marriage and divorce when it comes to the children are concerned with the rights of the parents. This leaves the doting grandparents pretty much on the wayside. However, all states in the US have lately come around to the notion that while grandparents may not have a constitutional right to have custody and visit their grandchildren, they should at least have statutory rights.

Unfortunately, not all parents agree. They have successfully challenged state laws that dictate grandparents’ rights based on constitutionality, and so the success of any bid to acquire rights over their grandchildren will depend on a particular state’s laws on it.

In Texas, for example, grandparents have no right of visitation. If a parent objects, they have no legal recourse. However, it is possible for grandparents to petition the state court to grant them visitation rights under specific circumstances. They can also petition for custody if the grandchildren lived a minimum of six months with them and the petition is within 90 days after the children were removed from their care. They may also petition for custody if an emergency arises wherein the grandparents can prove the wellbeing and safety of the children are at risk. According to the website of Holmes, Diggs & Sadler, this can be a tricky proposition. It requires a skilled family law attorney to have an even chance of success in most cases.

The same situation exists in Iowa, more or less. The law states that visitation and custodial rights of grandparents can only be granted if it is in the best interests of the child. The only way grandparents can prevail over the objections of the parents regarding visitation and custody is to prove them unfit. As pointed out on the website of Cedar Rapids family law attorneys Arenson Law Group, PC, it is important to maintain stability for the children even amidst a legal battle over them, and that is not an easy task. The children after all are the most important factor in such cases.

If you want to petition the court to grant you grandparents’ rights, you need to go to the right people. Consult with a qualified family or divorce lawyer in your state to make sure that you get the best representation you can get.

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The Shape of things to Come with Dangerous Drugs and Medical Devices

Posted by on Jun 16, 2015 in Dangerous Products & Drugs | 0 comments

Pharmaceutical companies are not making it easy for plaintiffs to make a claim by dragging out the legal process as long as they can. For example, manufacturer of drospirenone-based combined oral contraceptives (COCs) Yaz and Yasmin Bayer Pharmaceuticals is now refusing to face some thousands of claims in a Lexicon waiver as it had previously offered, which would have allowed all plaintiffs to present their cases before U.S. District Judge David Herndon. According to the National Injury Law Center website, these COCs had dangerous side effects about which Bayer neglected to warn their users. Bayer is now maneuvering that plaintiffs bring their claims to their local district courts.

The first product liability lawsuit filed for hysterectomy power morcellation is also working its slow way up the legal ladder. The suit was filed in March 2014 by the widower of Donna Burkhardt, who died in February 2013 of metastatic leiomyosarcoma because of a hysterectomy using a device manufactured by LINA Medical. According to the website of the morcellator lawsuit attorneys at Williams Kherkher, morcellators significantly increase the risk of uterine and similar cancers when it cuts up fibroid tissues that may be cancerous. The discovery phase is set to complete by July 2015, and any pre-trial motions should be completed by October. Only then can the actual trial begin, scheduled for November 3, 2015 at the U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of Pennsylvania. However, further delays are extremely likely.

On the other hand, Stryker Orthopaedics has already begun to settle claims by patients or their families for the defective Stryker Hip Implant devices that failed catastrophically prior to November 3, 2014. According to the Williams Kherkher website, this is the reason that Stryker voluntarily recalled certain devices in 2012. However, patients whose implants failed after November 2014 will not be eligible for a claim. This does not mean that they cannot file a lawsuit against Stryker provided it is within the statute of limitations for their state. It is vital that they contact a dangerous drugs or medical device lawyer in their area immediately.

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Things You Should Know About SR-22

Posted by on Jun 14, 2015 in Insurance | 0 comments

Nobody seems to know what the S and R in SR-22 stand for (although you could make some educated guesses), but that is not really important as long as you know what it is. An SR-22 is a certificate of financial responsibility that an insurance company issues to the Secretary of State on behalf of a motorist who is considered a “high risk.” These types of drivers are required an SR-22 in order to get back a suspended license, or to renew it.

Of course, in order to get it, you first have to buy car insurance from the company. The SR-22 is not a replacement for the insurance; merely a statement that you do have the required insurance. The SR-22 form may differ slightly from state to state, but according to Madison car accident lawyers, as long you can get the liability coverage your state requires, you are good.

In most cases, you will be required an SR-22 if you demonstrate bad judgment on the road. It could be for a serious moving violation such as driving under the influence of an intoxicant, driving without the requisite insurance, three or more traffic tickets over a short period, or driving on a suspended or revoked license.

The SR-22 itself is not expensive, ranging from $15 to $25. However, your insurance premiums will skyrocket if you ask an insurance company for an SR-22. Insurance companies do not like to cover high-risk drivers because they do not like to pay out, which they are more likely to do with a driver that needs an SR-22! Some insurance companies do not even offer SR-22 coverage.

Your best bet is to go with a state-approved insurance company specializing in issuing SR-22 certificates. They are most likely to give you the best rates and provide you with reliable customer service and coverage. Most importantly, try to be a more responsible driver to avoid trouble in the future.

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Deferred Action out of Commission in Texas

Posted by on Jun 13, 2015 in Immigration Policies | 0 comments

There is a legal battle ongoing between the federal government and several states headed by Texas that are trying to bar the implementation of immigration policies that would prevent the deportation of eligible segments of illegal immigrants for a limited period. The lower courts have decided in favor of the plaintiff states, and the decision is now under appeal before the Fifth Circuit Court of New Orleans.

The policies in question are the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) and Deferred Action for Parents (DAP), and the plaintiff states claim that the policies would place a financial burden on the states. They cited Social Security benefits and driver’s license costs, among other benefits currently barred to illegal immigrants. The federal government lawyers argue that providing these illegal immigrants legal working status will actually increase state incomes from income taxes. In the meantime, those who have applied for DACA and DAP, but have not yet been processed, are in legal limbo. Parents of US-born children in Texas that have not yet applied for DAP are in constant fear of deportation.

The DACA and DAP was pushed forward by the Obama Administration, and enacted into law in 2012. Two years later, the Immigration Services had conferred DACA status to 581,000 people, and denied 24,000. President Obama expanded the coverage of DACA and introduced DAP in November 2014. For the plaintiff states, this was going too far.

DACA and DAP would have been a great benefit for the millions of illegal immigrants currently living in the US, but many states are resisting their implementation. As pointed out on the website of the Law Office of William Jang, PLLC in Austin, immigrants are always facing serious challenges, even if they are eligible under the law. They often need competent legal representation specializing in immigration to maximize their chances of success.

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Pedestrians Should Always Look both Ways

Posted by on Jun 11, 2015 in Personal Injury | 0 comments

Pedestrians have been having a hard time surviving crossing the road in Killeen recently. The latest pedestrian accident involved a 65-year-old male and as-yet unidentified motorist driving a black 2011 Mazda 6. However, this is far from an isolated incident. In a bizarre twist of fate, a motorist hit another car on the right rear side, causing the other motorist to lose control of the vehicle, striking a pedestrian on the other side of the road. Police believed the pedestrian, who had his back to the cars, did not have time to react.

Pedestrians are especially vulnerable to vehicular accidents and other types of personal injury. It could be a slip and fall or a dog bite. At the very least, this can result in serious cuts, lacerations, and broken bones. At worst, it can lead to death, such as what happened to the two hapless victims recounted above.

Sometimes pedestrians share part of the blame. They could have been reckless when crossing the road, or heedless to obvious dangers such as potholes, slippery surfaces, or bad-tempered dogs. However, in some instances, they are innocent of any fault, and their families are left to bear the burden of the recklessness and negligence of other people. This can be slightly alleviated by suing the responsible party for financial compensation.

According to the website of the Law Offices of Williams Kherkher, the legal process for personal injury or wrongful death suits can be intimidating. In the hands of a competent personal injury lawyer, however, it can be a potent tool for balancing the scales. Parties that fail in their duty of care to others are a menace to the community, and should not be allowed to continue on their merry way without consequences.

If you or a close family member suffered serious harm and loss because of a negligent third party, you have the right to compensation.

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Your Rights in the Arrest Process

Posted by on Jun 10, 2015 in Criminal Law | 0 comments

Most people will never experience being arrested first-hand, and that is a good thing. However, if you ever do find yourself in a sticky situation, it would be good to know what to expect, and what your rights are at each step.

Generally, the criminal process begins when a police officer detains you for questioning. This is a stop if you are not moved to another location, not an arrest. The police officer has the right to question you if they have a reasonable suspicion that you have broken the law in some way. At the same time, you have the right to refuse to answer any questions, or to consent to a search of your person or effects. If the police officer has probable cause for a search, he or she may do so anyway, but in case there is no probable cause, you have it on record that you did not consent to it. This can get any evidence the officer may find inadmissible in court.

If the officer believes that you have violated the law, you may be put under arrest. You may also be arrested if there is an outstanding warrant in your name. At that point, the officer should give you a rundown of your constitutional rights, such as your right to an attorney. It is important that you do not waive your right to legal representation, because the law is seldom black and white. You may be giving up more than you think.

According to the website of Kohler Hart Powell, SC, once you are under arrest, you will be taken into custody. You should be able to make whatever phone calls you want to your attorney, friends, or family members to let them know what happened, and not just the one phone call beloved of movies. It is always important that you remember your rights throughout the process despite the mental stress that you might be undergoing.

You cannot be held in custody indefinitely without being charged. This is the purview of the prosecutor, not the police. The time limit varies, but the prosecutor generally has up to 72 hours to bring charges against you. Your lawyer can ask for your release after that, or if the prosecutor decides not to press charges, you can be released earlier. If charges are brought against you, you will be booked, which means having your fingerprints and picture taken for the record, and your personal effects taken. At each step, your criminal defense lawyer will be there to protect your rights.

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