Monday morning with Alex Williams’ cartoons

qccartoon
This cartoon is by Alex Williams who draws the Queen’s Counsel cartoons for The Times and in numerous books including The Queen’s Counsel Lawyer’s Omnibus. He offers almost all of his cartoons for sale at £120 for originals and £40 for copies and they can be obtained from this email info@qccartoon.com.

August 30, 2016 · Tim Kevan · Comments Closed
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How Driving Under the Influence Can Change Your Life (USA)

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A DUI, or driving under the influence, is a serious offense – as with any alleged crime, you are innocent until proven guilty. The ramifications of being convicted of a DUI can affect your job or school, not to mention your freedom and monetary penalties. It can also influence job opportunities in the future. You may receive a serious fine as well as a significant raise in your car insurance rates. 

Depending on the jurisdiction, the penalties for a conviction can vary. In all states, the first DUI offense is usually classified as a misdemeanor. 

Loss of driver’s license

There is a mandatory loss of driver’s license in every state. This can be initiated by the court or by the state of motor vehicles department. 

  • 90 days
  • One year
  • Three years

For a first offense, a driver’s license may be suspended for a period of 90 days. Subsequent DUIs require an increased amount of time for license suspension. A second DUI will put you at risk of losing your license for a year – and a third, three years or longer. 

Monetary consequences

DUIs are expensive. Attorney fees add up quickly – not to mention fines that are imposed even with a first offense. DUI fines of $500 up to $2000 are common.

Loss of freedom. Besides the costs of being convicted of a DUI, you may also be looking at a loss of freedom – jail time. Even for a first offense, some states require six-months of jail. 

  • Blood-alcohol test (BAC)
  • Breathalyzer
  • Urine test

These are three of the tests commonly given to someone who is suspected of a DUI. Refusal of these tests, in some states, can result in additional penalties. 

Many states take into consideration the blood-alcohol content, or BAC in determining sentencing. All states have set 0.08% BAC as the legal limit for a DUI. 

Laws and DUI

Even though you might be a minor – don’t expect a break in punishment if you are convicted of a DUI. Since the legal drinking age (in most states) is 21, being found guilty of driving while under age is a separate offense in itself. Underage drivers convicted of a DUI may in fact face adult sentences on minors for lower BACs.

Alternative penalties

Some states include alcohol education as part of their punishment. 

  • Drug/alcohol assessment/treatment
  • Restitution to victims
  • Community service

These alternative sentences may be included as part of the penalties for a DUI. These are usually included in a situation where the DUI conviction was for a first offense. 

Following a DUI, your future shouldn’t be left to chance. If you find yourself looking at charges for a DUI – seek the advice of an attorney who has experience and success defending these types of charges.

August 26, 2016 · Tim Kevan · Comments Closed
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Technology Can Win or Lose the Case

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The Internet: Best Friend and Worst Enemy

For those in a divorce proceeding, some of the best advice as regards the internet is: exercise extreme caution. Certainly spying on spouses isn’t advisable or even technically legal, but divorce gets nasty. When it comes down to division in the court, property, pets, and custody are going one way or the other. Be sure the opposing party will use everything in their power to ensure they win. Don’t give them ammunition by starting a Tinder profile! Even if the relationship petered off a year and a half before the divorce and both parties were experimenting extra-maritally, in the eyes of the court, only the one about whom sufficient evidence of wrongdoing may be demonstrated is going to bear the consequences. From Facebook to Tinder, email to search engine history to shared bills, there are many ways a spouse can find out about extra-marital activity; and not to use that in court? Unlikely. It takes extreme altruism and pain tolerance; furthermore, it might not be just. Sometimes the person seeking a divorce is the one who’s actually responsible for tearing apart the marriage. In such a scenario, information come by digitally would be very integral to the coming case.  

Laws Against Spying
On the other hand, what is and isn’t “illegal” activity monitoring changes based on the laws which follow technology. Reading a message that comes from an extra-marital lover on an e-mail account which someone shares with their soon-to-be-ex-spouse isn’t illegal; it can be argued as an observation of happenstance. It’s still very touchy, though, and depending on the defense counsel of your ex-partner, it could be seen negatively in the eyes of the court. In order to keep from accidentally sabotaging your divorce case, what makes the most sense is finding legal representation and following their advice as regards “snooping”/”spying”, etc. There are certainly scenarios where acquisition of information is not illegal; they are definitely going to be few and far between, however.

Benefits
On the plus side, when there are custodial issues during a preceding which keep the rightful parents from seeing their children, through things like Skype and other camera-oriented technology, a relationship between children and parents can still be fostered. This also looks good during the subsequent trial.

The Bottom Line
The internet has several plusses and minuses. On the plus side of things:

  • It provides communication access to children who may be separated during a case.
  • It provides information about both parties.
  • The internet can expose fraud and swing jury sympathy.

On the minus side:

  • Clients can get in trouble for spying without meaning to.
  • Clients can lose the case after the relationship is over through revealed private information.
  • The internet is perpetually in the public eye.

Don’t ruin chances of being the rightful guardian of children or property as a result of too many drinks and a subsequent Facebook outing. Attorneys should be consulted regarding internet use throughout legal proceedings; especially in the case of divorce.

August 25, 2016 · Tim Kevan · Comments Closed
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Have You Been In A Motor Vehicle Accident Recently (for the USA)

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Have you or any of your family members have been in any motor vehicle accident? If the answer is yes, then you must go to a lawyer in order to seek legal advice for the next step in order to make your situation and condition better. Accidents happens or occurs because of careless driving, drunk driving, malfunctioning of the traffic signal and many other reasons. It is true that motor vehicles affect the family and other close ones of the person injured in the accident. It will not be wrong to say that seeking legal advice is not only important, but it is important. Therefore, if you are in the same situation, then you should start looking for a good lawyer right now.

In case, if you or any other family member has been in a motor vehicle accident, then you will have to start your search for a motor vehicle accident lawyer. Finding and hiring good motor vehicle accident lawyers is not that easy as it looks. In reality, it can be said that it is time-consuming and daunting task. In case, if you are pursuing a compensation claim then finding a good lawyer who can handle the case efficiently becomes more difficult. There is no shortage of motor vehicle accident lawyers, but very few of the lawyers can help you in getting the aces in your favor as compensation claim cases are very difficult, and they require experience and impressive expertise.

You will see the advertisement in the papers and television about different lawyers and firms advertising their services; don’t get lured by cheap advertisements. It is better to find a good and reliable motor vehicle accident lawyer by following genuine and reliable advice and information as they will always lead you in the right direction and the final result which you will get will be fruitful and beneficial for you.

Questions that should be ask to the lawyer before availing their services.

• There are a few questions which you should ask before hiring the services of any specific motor vehicle accident firm or lawyer in order to select the best option available.

• The very first thing that you should ask will be about the experience of the lawyer who will be representing your case. You should also them about the cases which they have handled in the past and their track record.

• You should make everything clear about the price. Therefore, it is suggested to discuss the budget which you have or which you will be spending on the required case.

In case, if you are planning to hire the services of a motor vehicle accident firm then you will have to ask the lawyer who will be handling your case.

It is the task of Legal representatives to interpret the law through words or actions for the defense of an idea, a business concern or an individual. They have to be extensively versed in a great numerous areas: history, economics, human behavior and motivation and the sensibleness of day to day living. The learning of legal representatives not at all ends as they have to constantly be abreast of facts which may be of use to the client. The role and responsibility of lawyer grows because the society is also growing in density. It is not at all possible to manage each and every aspect of every client’s legal requirements for one single lawyer. For example the lawyer who manages tax allegations of stock market transactions cannot be able to handle the client’s needs for divorce proceedings. This is the reason, the majority of legal representatives are specifying the types of cases and clients which they can and will serve.

Hence it is important to contact the right lawyer for your legal issues.

August 25, 2016 · Tim Kevan · Comments Closed
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Blame and claim

PennyweatherJ_CircuitToday I had the pleasure of appearing in front of the notorious JudgeLooseCannon.  He’s a gruff northerner who never shies away from showing his disdain for the petty-fogging ways of the southerners who surround him in his surrogate home on the south east of England.  He’s also well know for spouting off on any old subject which happens to have taken his fancy that morning whilst reading the newspaper over breakfast.  Much of the time, he gets away with it because his comments are so irrelevant to the case in hand as not to affect the judgment one way or the other.  However, as I alluded to last week, many’s the judgment of JudgeLooseCannon which has been handed around the robing, not least because he takes great pleasure in sending the parties away for an hour at the end of the submissions and typing up a written judgment “for the avoidance of any doubt.”

Today I was representing an insurance company defending a claim against someone who had tripped over a hole in the pavement which was about an inch thick and certainly enough to prove liability.  Here’s just an extract from the judgment:
“I will no doubt be appealed for saying so, but nevertheless, I intend to put forward my real reason for dismissing this claim. It is simply that I am sick and tired of seeing queues of people trundling through this county court bringing claims for what was basically an unfortunate accident.  Something which when I was younger would have merited sympathy, perhaps a sweet cup of tea and beyond that a shrug of the shoulders. Just one of those things. I regret to say that nothing seems to be just one of those things any longer. It’s all blame and claim and, you’ll have to forgive the rhyming, but I say shame! and shame again! It’s time people starting taking responsibility for their own actions and if no-one is prepared to stand up and say so then we can start today, in this county court.  For this reason, I therefore dismiss this claim.”

He may or may not have a point but for today, I fear that my victory may be over-turned on appeal.

August 24, 2016 · Tim Kevan · 6 Comments
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Monday morning with Alex Williams’ cartoons

qccartoon
This cartoon is by Alex Williams who draws the Queen’s Counsel cartoons for The Times and in numerous books including The Queen’s Counsel Lawyer’s Omnibus. He offers almost all of his cartoons for sale at £120 for originals and £40 for copies and they can be obtained from this email info@qccartoon.com.

August 22, 2016 · Tim Kevan · Comments Closed
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How much do Injury Lawyers Earn? (In the USA)

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Injury Lawyers, (often known as slipe and fall lawyers), can make quite a bit of money according to the type of lawyer they are, their experience, and of course what type of deal they make with their clients.

An attorney is a professional that provides legal advice to individuals. In the majority of cases, those that work for nonprofit, law firms, government, or corporations are often on a salary. Some can work on a self-employed situation meaning they work alone while others may have partners which mean their salaries will be different.

Most lawyers that work in an Injury law firm, or have a partner normally make a larger amount of money than an attorney that goes it alone. However, the type of lawyer can change the money they earn, such as a law firm that does not work with corporations will not make as much money. In the majority of cases, lawyers that truly want to make their mark in the law industry, even though they work with a law firm, will also work alone on some cases so they can build up their experience so they will be able to find employment with a larger firm or one become a lawyer that works with the government or another field of the law so their salaries are larger.

The average wages for a brand new lawyer are around $57,000 annually, while the average wages for any attorney are close to $94,000 each year.

What comes into play when it involves how much an attorney will earn each year include such things as experience, education level, if they have chosen a specialized field like corporate or criminal, the firm size, what state they are working in, (as larger cities attorney’s will make more money than a small town), and lastly the type of clients they have. Experience is often one of the most important things, as a new lawyer fresh out of law school is not going to earn as much as one that has been in the five years or more.

Most attorneys prefer to specialize in certain areas as they can then earn more and also find their own niche that they prefer to work with than working in several different areas. A few examples are criminal company laws, civil laws, family law, or environment laws. This is also how lawyers are divided up, by the type of specialization they are working in and how they stay on top ofstay on top of the newest laws and regulations in their specific area. Specialized lawyers do earn a bit more as well, with earnings for people like assault attorney’s averaging around $49,000 annually. Divorce attorneys have to handle such issues as support for the spouse, child custody, the division of property, and alimony. These lawyers normally earn between $48,000 to $80,000. Nursing home attorneys must be up to date on all law regarding nursing homes especially when it comes to abuse. These lawyers normally earn around $97,000 annually. For criminal attorney’s many factors come into play such as the law firm size, the town they are practicing in, their experience and the type of criminal law that are specialized in. The average annual earnings of a criminal lawyer working in a firm are close to 78,593 while those going it alone can make around $95,195 annually.

Attorney’s that work with intellectual property must have an excellent understanding of laws regarding intellectual property. These lawyers usually earn around $89,000 annually.

August 17, 2016 · Tim Kevan · Comments Closed
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JudgeLooseCannon

BabyB LPlate improvedMy opponent opened his case today with the following words: “This is an appeal from District Judge…” I won’t mention his name and will only go so far as to say that he is notorious enough in the South East that the name JudgeLoooseCannon is not far off.

Anyway, the circuit judge hearing the appeal interrupted my opponent at that stage and with a completely straight face said: “Yes, yes, and what are the other grounds of appeal.”

Despite the fact that the judge may have taken his response from an apocryphal story and also that it reflected badly on his view of my own case, it did raise a smirk in court, particularly I noticed the court clerk suggesting that it can’t have been the first appeal he’d heard from.

August 17, 2016 · Tim Kevan · 4 Comments
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Monday morning with Alex Williams’ cartoons

qccartoon
This cartoon is by Alex Williams who draws the Queen’s Counsel cartoons for The Times and in numerous books including The Queen’s Counsel Lawyer’s Omnibus. He offers almost all of his cartoons for sale at £120 for originals and £40 for copies and they can be obtained from this email info@qccartoon.com.

August 15, 2016 · Tim Kevan · Comments Closed
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JusticeForSale

BabyB LPlate improvedToday I was involved in a tiny case involving a small road traffic accident.  Which made it all the more surprising that I found myself against a barrister who was fifteen years call and according to the costs schedule was being paid £2,000 for the day compared to my £350. The thing is, it’s not that I’m a terrible barrister or anything although I don’t pretend to be particularly good either. But this barrister was a veritable Rolls Royce from the start and there is nothing more to say than that he absolutely wiped the floor with me. Kind of like putting a kid in the ring with Mike Tyson and telling him to make the best of it.

Which does make me wonder exactly what is the price of justice.  Today it was two grand. On another day, maybe less. If the stakes are higher, I’m sure it could be in the millions. But whatever it is, there’s a price. Otherwise, why would people spend big bucks on big lawyer? Certainly not as some sort of kind charitable gesture to lawyers. As I’ve said so many times. It’s all about the money.

Maybe we should be open and transparent about it and just stick justice on eBay and see what it fetches? Sell it down the Swanee river once and for all and be done with it.

August 10, 2016 · Tim Kevan · 3 Comments
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