Legal Insights

  • Domestic Adoption: Requirements to Adopt in the United States

    For many, the choice to add to their family is a joyous and exciting time. For various reasons, adoption may be the best choice available for families who would like to have children. Adoption is a process in which an individual, in most cases a child, becomes a permanent and legal member of another family. Specific eligibility requirements vary from state to state, but in most cases, eligibility is determined based on several factors. Most people are eligible to adopt, regardless of thei...
  • Do You Need an Employee Handbook?

    An employee handbook defines and documents your company’s policies and procedures. It protects both you and your employees, and provides a written reference for employees, supervisors, and managers about their responsibilities and the expectations your company has for them. Putting your policies in writing in an employee handbook can help resolve disputes before they arise and avoid litigation.  Most states do not require businesses to have an employee handbook but may require any com...
  • Who Should I Name as My Executor?

    When you write your will, one of the things you do is identify the person or persons you name as your executor. The executor acts as a representative of your estate, carries out the wishes you have expressed in your will, pays the debts and obligations of the estate, and distributes assets to your beneficiaries – the persons you designated in your will to receive them. Duties of the Executor The executor is responsible for collecting and preserving the assets of your estate and preparin...
  • You Have the Right to An Attorney

    You’ve heard it many times before on television: “You have the right to remain silent. Anything you say can and will be used against you in a court of law. You have the right to an attorney.” These statements are what are collectively known as a “Miranda warnings” or “Miranda rights,” which were established in the case Miranda v. Arizona. The Fifth Amendment of the United States Constitution right to counsel was recognized as part of Miranda, and refers to your right to counse...
  • Why College Students Should Sign a Health Care Proxy and Power of Attorney

    The Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act (HIPAA) protects the privacy of medical records and information. Doctors and medical facilities are not permitted to disclose any information about patients without permission. Generally, parents will be able to obtain medical information about a minor child, but once that child turns 18, their access to this information is not guaranteed. As a result, if you are the parent of a college student over the age of 18 who gets injured or bec...
  • Suing an Airline and Available Remedies

    Flying seems to have become more difficult and fraught with headaches in recent years. From lost luggage to plane crashes and everything between, many issues can arise when flying airlines. When in these situations, it often feels hopeless—you against an enormous corporation—but all is not lost. Here are some available forms of recourse if you feel you have been wronged by your airline.  Delays and Cancellations In the U.S., airlines are not required by law to financially compensa...
  • Establishing Medical Malpractice

    If you or a loved one were injured and believe that the medical care you received either caused or contributed to your injuries, you may be considering whether it makes sense to pursue the doctor, hospital, or medical facility for your injuries. A lawsuit against a doctor or medical facility for harm caused because of a failure to competently provide medical care is known as a medical malpractice. Medical Malpractice Generally Laws governing medical malpractice vary from state to state, a...
  • Parents-to-Be Via Surrogacy

    Having children and starting a family is an exciting time. This excitement can be dampened if a couple who wants to have children is, for whatever reason, unable to conceive naturally. Surrogacy is a method of reproduction where a woman agrees to carry a child for intended parents who may not be able to conceive. There are two types of surrogacy, traditional surrogacy and gestational surrogacy. Traditional surrogacy involves natural or artificial insemination of the surrogate, in which c...
  • What Does Workers Compensation Cover?

    Workers compensation is a type of insurance generally carried by employers that covers employees’ medical expenses and lost income resulting from an injury that occurred in the course of employment, as well as additional payments if it is determined that the injury has resulted in some type of permanent impairment. It does not provide for pain and suffering or other damages. Types of Workers Compensation Benefits Paid As an injured worker, you have a right to benefits to pay for your me...
  • Mortgage Lending Liability: What to do if You’re the Victim of Predatory Lending

    The recession from 2007 to 2009 was arguably the country’s worst financial crisis since the Great Depression. One of the primary catalysts for the recession was the subprime mortgage crisis. Leading up to the subprime mortgage crisis, there was a rapid increase in the market value of real estate, and at the same time, banks were extending mortgages to borrowers who were a credit risk and were likely to have difficulty making and maintaining mortgage payments (a/k/a subprime mortgage lend...
  • Immunizations and the Law

    Immunizations are a controversial topic, and there are people who believe that vaccinations do more harm than good. However, it is widely accepted that many childhood and other serious diseases are now preventable by vaccines. School vaccination laws were created to help keep children safe at school and to prevent the spread of diseases. All parents are required to ensure that their school-aged children receive the necessary vaccinations before starting school, unless they fall under cert...
  • What to Do If You Are Injured at Work

    If you are injured on the job, you are entitled to receive workers’ compensation benefits. The workers’ compensation laws vary by state, but below are some basic steps you should take to maximize the compensation you receive for your injuries and medical treatment regardless of where you’re located.  Get Medical Help The first thing you should do when sustaining any type of injury on the job is to seek appropriate medical attention and treatment for your injury. The faster you ...
  • Cyberbullying

    While bullying was once largely considered harmless teasing, it has now become a serious matter than should not be taken lightly—especially, when the internet is involved. With social media consuming the lives of children and teens, cyberbullying often magnifies the painful experience. Severe, long-term, and/or frequent cyberbullying can leave both victims and bullies at greater risk for anxiety, depression, and other stress-related disorders. In some cases, victims of cyberbullying have ...
  • Is it Time for a Professional Business Valuation?

    As a business owner, there are many reasons to obtain a professional business valuation, but one of the most common is to plan your exit strategy. Exiting Your Business You’ve worked hard to build your business, so you will want to get the full and fair value of that business when it is time to sell, whether the sale is to a third-party buyer or to someone within the company. An independent business valuation can help that process by providing a non-biased evaluation of the business’s...
  • Medicaid Planning Basics

    What is Medicaid? Medicaid is a medical benefit program provided jointly by the federal government and by the state in which you live. It covers individuals with lower income, as well as the blind, elderly (over 65 years of age), and disabled. Why should I do Medicaid Planning? Americans are living longer than ever, but with that comes an increase in the likelihood that most of us will need some sort of long-term healthcare. Nursing home care is expensive, and home healthcare is even m...
  • Divorce & Credit

    Going through a divorce can be a challenging time for anyone. During this time, you will not only be figuring out how to live your lives separately, but also how to handle your finances separately. If you are going through a divorce or are contemplating a divorce, amongst all the other considerations, it is important to look closely at issues involving your credit and discuss them with your attorney. While a judge may issue a divorce decree on how money and property will be divided, a divo...
  • Cohabitation Agreements: “Couple Contracts”

    In recent years, there has been an increase in couples who decide to live together before they get married, if they want to get married at all. Couples who cohabitate may think they have the same protections as married couples to shared persona and real property if they separate, but for the most part, they do not. By entering into a cohabitation agreement, unmarried couples and cohabitants who are not couples, can outline and agree to the rights that each person has to the shared property...
  • Nursing Home Claims: Suing for Improper Care

    The elderly are moving into nursing homes and other assisted care facilities at an increasing rate, and fortunately, those nursing homes are required by federal law to maintain certain standards of care. Unfortunately, a significant number of nursing home residents are being injured, and even dying, because of negligence and abuse at the hands of individuals employed by these facilities. When this happens on the premises of a nursing home, the nursing home may be held liable for damages. B...
  • Feuding Neighbors: Water Damage

    When water gets into your home, whether from burst pipes, leaky appliances, or torrential rainfall, it can wreak havoc on your home and belongings causing stress and thousands of dollars in damages. When water damage may have been caused by a neighbor, serious disputes can arise. The legal issues surrounding these disputes can be complex. The rights of each neighbor depend on the specific circumstances involved in the case, and typically, local and state laws address the subject. Natural...
  • Are You Violating Copyright Laws by Using Those Images?

    Whether you are an individual posting or sharing photos, GIFs, or video on social media or a business searching for images to use for your email marketing campaigns, website or print advertisements, it is easy to think that the images you find online are fair game to use. However, the truth is that if you did not create the image, take the photo, shoot the video yourself, or pay to use it, you could unwittingly be infringing on the copyright of the creator.  In the United States, as s...