What to Do If You Get Pulled Over

The choices you make and the things you say during an encounter with a police officer can have a tremendous effect on any future legal proceedings that follow. What might have been a simple speeding ticket can quickly turn into handcuffs and a night in jail if you say the wrong things, especially if you are concerned that the cop may want to arrest you. Here are some tips for interacting with officers after getting pulled over:

Pulling Over

As soon as you see a police car following you with its lights on and siren wailing, you need to pull over on the right side of the road quickly and safely. Pulling over doesn’t mean that you did anything wrong, but it tells the officer that you are alert and aware of your surroundings. Be sure to use your turn signal as you change lanes, and don’t slam on the brakes. You should roll your windows down and wait for the cop to pull over behind you.

After You Stop

Once you have completely pulled over and stopped the engine, you should prepare to talk to the police officer. There are some things you can do to show you are respectful and courteous; things that can only help you if you end up needing a lawyer. You want to roll your window down all the way and keep your hands either resting outside of the window or resting on top of the steering wheel. Remember, the cop doesn’t know who you are or what you are capable of doing. It’s best to show them that you are not a threat. You also want to discard any chewing gum (don’t litter), put out any cigarettes, and turn the vehicle’s interior light on. It’s better to take a hit with your pride than to try and deal with an adrenaline-fueled police officer. Never get out of the vehicle unless the officer tells you to do so, and wait until they ask for your license to reach for it. You don’t want them to think you are trying to find a weapon before they approach the vehicle.

Searching the Vehicle

Officers are permitted to search the vehicle if they have probable cause. This can be given to them if they see anything illegal that is in plain view, such as an open beer can, drug paraphernalia, or the smell of marijuana. If they find one incriminating piece of evidence, they will most likely decide to search the entire vehicle. Officers are also trained to identify strange behavior, like furtive movements. Furtive movements are typically described as sketchy or strange, sudden actions that indicate your attention is elsewhere. The police officer doesn’t know if you are thinking about a bag of coke you hid under the seat or if you are trying to figure out a way to reach a gun. Acting strangely can get you yanked out of the car and they can search the vehicle if they suspect you are concealing a weapon.

A Premarital Agreement is Made in Contemplation of Marriage

The pre-nuptial agreement is a legal document that marrying couples may want to consider entering before actually tying the knot. While some individuals see pre-nuptial agreements as a sign of mistrust towards the person with whom they will spend the rest of their lives; many financial experts, legal professionals and marriage counselors rather say that entering into one is rather advantageous, especially in the event that the marriage does not work out and end in divorce.

Pre-nuptial, ante-nuptial or pre-marital agreement gained popularity in the U.S. in 1848 after the Married Women’s Property Act was passed into law. Prior to this law, a legal policy known as “coverture” required that a woman who entered into marriage had to surrender to her husband whatever she owned, even her rights and identity. Thus, the right to own properties, as well as the right to sell or transfer these properties’ ownership was alienated from her.

Coverture also took away a wife’s rights from getting an education and from receiving a salary (unless she was allowed by her husband); thus, if she was allowed by her husband to work, she will have to surrender all her earnings to him. Simply put, the coverture policy took away a wife’s civil and property rights, and rendered her only as an extension of the man she married.

The Married Women’s Property Act gave married women the right to earn and keep her earnings – this, somehow, offered her a bit of protection in the event that her husband divorces her (as divorce was common thing during those times).

A pre-nuptial agreement, to be understood by both parties, will need to be discussed by them as candidly as possible. You may seek the assistance of lawyers who will see to the observance of both of rights and interests and who will prepare the necessary documents based on the decisions arrived at. Some of the benefits this agreement provides include protection:

  • Over wealth inherited from your family;
  • Of your personal and business properties and assets made before marriage;
  • Of the financial security of your child/children from a previous union; and,
  • From lengthy and costly court settlement in the event of divorce.

Drafting and signing a premarital agreement remains a contentious issue for many couples. However, having a premarital agreement is the best way to protect the interests of you and your spouse. A premarital agreement is defined in the state of Texas as “an agreement between prospective spouses made in contemplation of marriage and to be effective on marriage.” The agreement must pertain to property held before or gained after marriage, including income and earnings. It is imperative to have the strongest legal team conducting your premarital agreements to protect your best interests.

The Dangers of Wrong Diagnosis

Medical professionals are there to help diagnose health conditions and treat them, but sometimes, they also make mistakes. It is important to note that health is a very complex matter, and errors on the part of the medical professional does not automatically mean that he or she has become negligent and incompetent.

But this doesn’t change the fact that a wrong diagnosis can have serious consequences. According to a wrong diagnosis article from the website of Habush Habush & Rottier S.C. ®, you may be eligible to pursue a medical malpractice claim against a responsible party.

To prevail, there are usually three things to prove:

  • The existence of a doctor-patient relationship
  • The doctor has become negligent, like failing to provide competent treatment
  • The doctor’s negligent tendency has caused injury to the patient

Wrong diagnosis can happen in many ways, but the most common instances include the following:

  • Healthy but diagnosed as sick
  • Sick but diagnosed as healthy
  • Diagnosed with a wrong medical condition
  • Diagnosed with a wrong subtype of a medical condition

Wrong diagnosis can be very dangerous. Healthy persons diagnosed as sick can receive complications and unnecessary financial damages from medical costs. Sick persons diagnosed as healthy may experience worsening medical conditions and development of additional complications. At worst, a wrong diagnosis may even cost the life of the patient.

There are also instances where medical professionals commit wrong diagnosis because of external factors that affect their capabilities. Issues such as the lack of medical facilities may result into inaccuracies in diagnostic procedures. Management problems, like understaffing, lack of training of staff, and overcrowding of hospitals, can greatly contribute to medical malpractice cases such as wrong diagnosis.

It is tragic to realize that patients, who are supposed to be receiving adequate and dignified care from the medical staff, are at risk because of the negligence of physicians and hospital managers. It is good to know that the law is on the side of the patients, as there are a lot of lawyers out there who specialize on medical malpractice cases.

What You Need to Know About Alimony Payments

Going through the process of divorce means that the legal union between spouses effectively becomes terminated, leaving them free from the commitment they’ve made with each other. Despite this dissolution, spouses that were once married to each other do not usually part ways without having at least some sort of shared responsibility or obligation that they will need to continually fulfill. This is true for couples with children that are looking to continue parenting together, as well as for couples where one of the partners ends up experiencing significant financial turbulence after the conclusion of their union.

According to the Raleigh divorce attorneys of Marshall & Taylor, P.C., it isn’t at all uncommon to find one partner experiencing a significant decline in their standard of living following a separation. Such an outcome is common for situations where one of the spouses had to forgo professional opportunities to become a stay-at-home parent or to help the other spouse advance in their career. Whatever the case, the law provides ways to ensure continued spousal support through alimony payments.

Alimony payments are expected to be made by the partner that is known to be in a better financial position. In most cases, this is determined by the court based on a number of factors. The most common factors that a judge will consider when making a decision regarding alimony are each spouse’s income and employment status, their age, as well as their current health status. The court is also expected to decide how long alimony needs to be paid, and in what sum.

When alimony payments aren’t promptly made, it’s wise to consult with an experienced family law attorney to avoid protracted disputes. Expert legal assistance is also required in cases where one or both couples experience lifestyle changes that might prove that there has been a significant change in their financial needs.

Rights of a Worker In A Workplace Accident

Rights of a Worker In A Workplace Accident

When employees report for work, they assume that they are safe from any harm or injury. In general, employers have the responsibility to ensure the safety of their promises and working conditions for their workers. When companies fail on this responsibility, employees have valid grounds for suing their employers. According to the website of Williams Kherkher, injuries can have a huge impact on their workers not only physically but financially as well.

When you get injured in your workplace, you have legal rights that you can exercise to make your employer liable for the injuries you incur. While they may vary from one state to another, there are a number of rights that is common in majority of states.

  • You have the right to claim workers compensation for injuries or illnesses in a court
  • It is your right to consult a doctor and seek medical treatment
  • If cleared to return to work, you have the right to return to your job
  • If temporary or permanent disability keeps you from returning to work, you have the right to be paid disability benefits
  • If you do not agree with any decision by your employer, its insurance company, or the court, you have the right to appeal the decision
  • You have the right to an attorney who will represent you in court

Your employer is required by law to report any accidents or injuries, no matter how minor it is. They should record such in an accident book. The Reporting of Injuries, Diseases, and Dangerous Occurrences Regulations (RIDDOR) requires your employer to report workplace accidents. On your part, you need to ensure that such is reported correctly.

Aside from reporting injuries, your employer also has the responsibility to conduct a risk assessment and ensure the health and safety of their employees. As an employee, you will be entitled to receive compensation which includes:

Sick Pay

Your injury or illness would cause you to be absent from work so you have the right to be paid Sick Pay. Aside from that, your employer may have a payment scheme for additional benefits due to accidents or may pay extra depending on the accident.


If you think that your employer can be held liable for your injury or illness, you can file a personal injury claim. You need to file it within three years after the date of the accident or you will not be able to recover anything beyond that.

Knowing your rights during a workplace accident can help you recover potential lost income due to your accident or injury.


Sharing Roads and Highways with more than 20 Million Uninsured Drivers

According to the Insurance Research Council (IRC), an independent, nonprofit research organization, in 2012, the number of those who continued to drive despite not having insurance dropped to 29.7 million (a decrease of 1.8% from the 2009 total). The top three states with the highest number of uninsured drivers then were: California, with 4.1 million; Florida, with 3.2 million; and, Texas, with 1.6 million.

The Financial Responsibility Law is in effect in all US states. This law requires drivers to demonstrate financial capability to compensate victims of accidents that are due to their fault. This financial capability may be demonstrated by:

  • Carrying auto liability insurance, which is actually a mandate in 48 states
  •  Complying with alternative financial responsibility requirements (if the driver chooses not to purchase auto liability insurance coverage), which is the case in the state of New Hampshire
  • Depositing cash or securities with the state’s Department of Motor Vehicles (DMV) rather than carrying auto liability insurance, as what is allowed in the state of Virginia

The types of auto insurance coverage mandated in 48 states are the tort liability car insurance and the no-fault liability car insurance (this is also called Personal Injury Protection or PIP). In tort states, where drivers need to carry tort liability car insurance, victims of accidents can claim compensation from the at-fault driver’s insurance provider; they are also allowed to file a civil lawsuit against the at-fault driver (usually to determine whose fault the accident really is and to settle their claims).

In no-fault states, insurance companies pay their own policy holders, regardless of whose fault the car accident is. There are 9 states that require the no-fault liability car insurance on drivers, while another three, Pennsylvania, New Jersey and Kentucky, allow drivers to choose either the tort liability car insurance or the no-fault liability car insurance. The nine no fault states are Florida, Hawaii, Kansas, Massachusetts, Michigan, Minnesota, New York, North Dakota, and Utah.

The high cost of premiums, according to Habush Habush & Rottier S.C.®, an independent car insurance company, is no excuse for drivers not to carry car liability insurance. There are three reasons why this is so: carrying car liability insurance is a mandate; it will be more costly not to carry one when they are caught by traffic enforcers or when they get involved in an accident; and, if they do get involved in an accident and they have no financial capability to compensate their victim, they may lose their property since this will have to sold to enable them to pay for damages.

To find the best insurance deal that is within their budget, drivers can seek the help of independent car insurance companies, which can provide them with insurance quotes patterned according to their needs.

Is My Baby at Risk of Cerebral Palsy?

Cerebral palsy (CP) is a birth condition that occurs when the developing brain is injured while inside the mother’s womb or during the birthing process. Individuals with cerebral palsy have an impaired ability to control muscles and movement, and symptoms oftentimes appear between 2 and 3 years old. CP is considered a non-progressive brain impairment, which means the condition would not continue to worsen as the child grows up.

According to WebMD, 70% of CP cases were a result of an anomaly that happened while the baby is still inside the mother’s womb. Unfortunately, according to jeffsampsonlaw.com, CP can sometimes be a result of poor birth practice, inexperienced medical staff, or negligence in the birthing center. The risk of CP also increases with these conditions:

  • Severe jaundice in the baby, or excessive bilirubin in the blood, which may affect the infant’s central nervous system and cause CP
  • Infection during pregnancy, including German measles and other viral infections
  • Birth asphyxia
  • Loss of blood supply in the brain during delivery. This could be a result of prolonged and difficult vaginal labor, failure to perform C-section, and improper use of birth-assisting tools
  • Rh incompatibility, which happens when the mother’s antibodies destroy the infant’s blood cells, which results in bilirubin toxicity and CP
  • Other birth defects that may damage the brain, such as disorders in the spinal column
  • Encephalitis in the baby, or the inflammation of the brain tissuecaused by viral illnesses such as measles, mumps, rubella and influenza
  • Bacterial meningitis in the baby, or the inflammation of the lining of the brain
  • Twin or multiple birth
  • Breech presentation
  • Mothers suffering from hyperthyroidism, hypothyroidism, seizures or mental retardation

If you are an expecting mother, it is important to speak with your doctor to talk about your child’s risk of CP. Keeping your body disease-free through healthy lifestyle and regular check-ups also lessens your baby’s risk of this chronic condition.


Can Medication Meant for Good Go Wrong?

A lot of people have relied on assuming newer things are better. It is a common assumption that new discoveries and marvels in the world of science can only be good things and can benefit the human condition. Unfortunately, this is not always true. There are some inventions and new concepts that can sometimes do more harm than the good they were designed to do – medication included.

There is evidence, as is presented in some recent cases where a lawsuit was necessary, that there has been FDA approved medication that has caused the increased pain and suffering of the patient. Xarelto, an anti-coagulant drug meant as a preventative drug against deep vein thrombosis which is common in patients who have had to go through hip replacements, has been linked to be the causing agent to cases of fatal gastrointestinal bleeding.

These are cases that were highlighted as examples on the website of Williams Kherkher, as this is not a particularly rare kind of case. As a matter of fact, there are other dangerous medications on the market and it can affect even the most innocent of consumers.

From the website of Zofran lawsuit attorneys, some mothers have filed for legal compensation for the suffering that not only they but also their newborn children are going through because of the drug. Zofran was originally permitted for people who are currently going through chemotherapy, in order to aid with their nausea. Expecting mothers also suffer from bouts of nausea and this can be difficult for professional, working moms who need to keep working before they’re due. Having taken this drug, they expected relief and normalcy and instead some cases have given evidence to the claim that Zofran caused their babies to be born with birth defects such as congenital heart failure or cleft palates.

These kinds of incidents need to be dealt with accordingly and so it is advised to contact an experienced professional immediately, should these events (or events of this nature) happen to you.

Some Personal Injury Myths, Debunked

There is hardly any such thing as a person who isn’t well-informed about his or her own rights these days. This is mainly attributed to the distribution of information through new media, specifically through the sharing of bits and pieces of information through social networking platforms. However, the regular Joe is just as capable of putting out phony stories about serious issues as much as legal experts are – and it’s about checking where the facts came from that can then make certain claims credible.

One such topic of conversation that is often diluted with myths and easily disproven theoretical assumptions is that of personal injury, the legal term used for any emotional, physical, or mental injury inflicted onto an innocent party as the result of another person’s negligence. There are some people who are on opposite extreme sides of the spectrum and these are the myths that this article is going to tackle.


  • Filing for Personal Injury is like finding gold at the end of the rainbow

This claim is incorrect on a case to case basis. According to the website of Milwaukee personal injury attorneys at Habush Habush & Rottier S.C. ®, compensation is given to the client in order for the client to not only be given recompense for the medical expenses necessary for the procedures but as well as loss of wages. Say that you accidentally got hit in the face with a door and you filed for personal injury. The case is, technically, allowable but without the advice of a lawyer – that lawsuit could be more costly than it is actually worth.


  • Personal Injury is too complicated and too costly

Now this is the opposite side of the spectrum as some victims don’t even know that they are warranted proper compensation for the damage done to them. In terms of complications, legal procedures and terminologies can be smoothed over with the help of an able personal injury attorney. That’s what hiring experienced help is for – their knowledge on the subject matter gives them the advantage and allows you the peace of mind that your case is in capable hands.

3 Truths About Divorce

It goes hand in hand with the discussion of marriage that divorce is an option in order to sever that contract. There are just some instances in life wherein divorce is necessary and that the given relationship would be better off with both parties as separated instead of forced to be together. Divorce has become quite common in its depiction in mainstream media – and these aren’t always factual representations. But people seem to believe how things go in movies and TV shows when, in actuality, that isn’t exactly how things play out.

The following are three truths you may not know about divorce, and should consider before going through such a long, difficult battle in many cases.

First of all, you don’t have to hide your assets in fear that it will make the settlement harder between the two parties. According to the website of Alexander & Associates, a divorce can go much faster if there is transparency and agreement between the two parties. There is no particular law that sets it in stone that one party will receive half of everything that the other owns as the financial aspects are personalized, depending on the economic background of either party.

The next bit is this: you don’t need to wait for a particularly nasty incident in order to file for divorce. There is such a thing as a no-fault divorce, wherein neither party committed a fault and simply want to separate for personal reasons. A divorce case of this nature can usually take a bit longer than a divorce with a fault, of course, but an amiable agreement is leagues better than one filled with tension, stress, and trauma; sometimes, it’s a blessing to be able to choose this route.

Lastly, the child doesn’t always go to the mother. It is always difficult for a child to have to go through his or her parents’ divorce and so the settlement of custody is always a tricky subject as it is the best interests of the child that is prioritized above all things. Some fathers may feel concern or trepidation when first filing for divorce out of fear that they may not be granted custody of their children. However, favor usually goes towards the primary caregiver of the child or the parent who is the most capable of taking care of the children. Couples that separate on good terms often agree on shared custody for the child’s sake.