law | Law Firm Newswire - Part 7

Austin, TX (Law Firm Newswire) September 26, 2014 – Nevada law enforcement officials are considering an education campaign about the dangers of using smartphones while driving and walking. “It’s a given that using a cellphone while driving is deadly. Law enforcement departments are seeing more and more crashes involving one or both of drivers texting or talking while behind the wheel. But all traffic interaction is dangerous if a person is distracted. The rate of pedestrians injured while texting in and near streets is also rising,” outlined Bobby Lee of Lee, Gober & Reyna in Austin. The Nevada Department of […]


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Chicago, IL (Law Firm Newswire) September 26, 2014 – Employers in some states may legally refuse to hire a smoker. Some employers will screen job candidates during the hiring process, and some include a nicotine test. At such companies, a positive result will disqualify a candidate. This practice is allowable under federal law. However, if a person is hired, many states forbid employers from firing the worker after a negative drug test or if the worker becomes a smoker while employed. “For the most part, an employer may ban smoking in the workplace. Demanding a smoker step outside to smoke […]


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Moorestown, NJ (Law Firm Newswire) September 25, 2014 – On September 23, Begley Law Group attorney Ethan Ordog received this year’s Robert W. Criscuolo Award at the Burlington County Bar Association’s annual State Bar Night at Indian Spring Country Club. The Honorable Ronald E. Bookbinder, Assignment Judge of Burlington County, presented the award. Ordog clerked for Bookbinder in 2007 and 2008. The Robert W. Criscuolo Award is presented annually to an attorney who demonstrates significant involvement and contributions to the Bar Association, to community service and to other civic activities. He or she must be in good standing in the […]


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Flint, MI (Law Firm Newswire) September 25, 2014 – During the Fourth of July period, a crackdown on drunk driving led to 236 arrests for alleged drunk driving, according to officials with the Michigan Office of Highway Safety Planning (OHSP). Law enforcement officers from over 160 sheriff’s offices, Michigan State Police posts and local police departments participated in the crackdown from July 1 to July 13. In total, over 7,800 vehicles were stopped during the two-week period. “Law enforcement officials are more active in apprehending alleged drunk drivers during periods when drunk driving rates are higher, like the Fourth of […]


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Sacramento, CA (Law Firm Newswire) September 24, 2014 – California caregivers have filed a class action lawsuit against Kindred Healthcare, Inc. for the company’s failure to pay minimum wage and overtime. “The charges include rest and meal break violations among a plethora of allegations relating to failure to pay overtime and minimum wage,” noted Deborah Barron, a Sacramento business attorney not involved in the lawsuit. “One plaintiff claims that she was denied overtime, and another suggests that she was not paid her full wages for helping an in-home care client.” Kindred Healthcare is one of the largest post-acute health services […]


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Chicago, IL (Law Firm Newswire) September 22, 2014 – Personal grooming choices are not considered “protected” characteristics. “It is not against federal employment law for a company to decline to hire someone whose appearance does not appeal to them. Companies may base their hiring and work choices on an individual’s personal characteristics, and they may legally treat them differently according to their attributes,” explained Chicago employment attorney Thomas C. Coffey. Nationwide, an employer may not discriminate against an individual because of disability, race, color, nationality, age, sexual orientation or religion. Those classes are referred to as “protected” classes or groups. […]


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Austin, TX (Law Firm Newswire) September 17, 2014 – The drilling of horizontal wells has become more common in Texas, creating challenges in oil and gas law and raising questions for royalty owners. This is particularly true regarding so-called “allocation wells,” which traverse the boundary of two or more leases, where the leases have not been pooled and there is no agreement among the royalty owners about production sharing. “Allocation wells raise several important legal questions — including whether such wells should be permitted in the first place,” said Gregory D. Jordan, an Austin oil and gas attorney. “If the […]


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WSHB’s commitment to diversity to be celebrated at DRI conference in October Los Angeles, CA (Law Firm Newswire) September 17, 2014 – Wood, Smith, Henning & Berman LLP has been selected to receive the DRI’s Law Firm Diversity Award at the 2014 DRI Annual Meeting in San Francisco, CA on Thursday, October 23, 2014. DRI is the nation’s leading organization of defense attorneys and in-house counsel. Each year, DRI’s Annual Professional Achievement and Service Awards celebrate and honor outstanding performance by law firms and individuals. “This award demonstrates a significant commitment to diversity,” said J. Michael Weston, DRI President, in […]


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Brandon, FL (Law Firm Newswire) September 10, 2014 – Bankruptcy preparers who charge a fee to help with bankruptcy filings are getting into trouble with the law for providing legal advice. Bankruptcy law is complex, and even filling out the forms correctly can be a challenge for many. In an effort to save on legal expenses, many individuals may be tempted to hire a preparer instead of a bankruptcy attorney. But it is illegal for preparers to give legal advice. “Only an attorney can provide legal advice as part of a service for which a fee is charged,” said Tampa […]


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Virginia Beach, VA (Law Firm Newswire) September 2, 2014 – A report from the Nursing Home Report Card, a Families for Better Care project, ranked Virginia poorly on nursing home quality measures. The state received a grade of “D,” with an overall ranking of 33rd out of 50 states. “The fact that there are many nursing homes in Virginia that have problems means that it is that much more important for seniors and their families to engage in proper planning and research before choosing a nursing facility,” said Andrew Hook, a Virginia elder law attorney with the Hook Law Center. […]


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Chicago, IL (Law Firm Newswire) August 29, 2014 – In an at-will employment arrangement, an employer may terminate a worker any time for a wide number of reasons. An employee may also quit any time for any reason, but he or she should do so with respect and courtesy if possible. “If you are thinking about quitting your job, make certain you know if you live in an at-will employment state, such as Illinois,” suggested Chicago employment attorney Timothy Coffey. “In virtually all states (with the exception of Montana), workers are presumed to be at-will employees unless the employment terms […]


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Lakeland, FL (Law Firm Newswire) August 27, 2014 – There are exceptions to police warrant requirements. In some cases, officers can search a person or his or her personal property without a warrant. “The most common exception allows a vehicle search with probable cause. The main question here is, what kind of facts may lead to probable cause for a search for legal possession of medical cannabis?” said Thomas C. Grajek, a Lakeland criminal defense attorney. “States that have legalized some forms of marijuana possession and/or use are trying to determine when the possession of cannabis triggers probable cause for […]


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Chicago, IL (Law Firm Newswire) August 22, 2014 – Most states hire workers “at-will.” Even though employees may usually be laid off at any time without notice, state and federal laws protect workers in some circumstances. “It is good common sense to understand whether or not you are employed at-will in your state. It affects how any labor disputes may be handled. Illinois is an employment-at-will state,” explained Timothy Coffey, a respected Chicago employment lawyer. State and federal laws protect workers in some circumstances. For instance, if a worker in Illinois has an employment contract, they do not have at-will […]


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Sacramento, CA (Law Firm Newswire) August 22, 2014 – California law dictates all workers must be paid for overtime, but employers are frequently ignoring the mandate. “We’re seeing an increase in unpaid overtime and wage lawsuits,” reported Sacramento business attorney, Deborah Barron. “Companies in the unethical habit of violating the laws are not paying workers either overtime or their regular salary.” Interestingly enough, bigger companies seem to flout the law most often. A recent case between Walmart and Schneider Logistics ultimately ended in a $21 million settlement. The suit was launched in 2011, and it represented over 1,800 workers at […]


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Brandon, FL (Law Firm Newswire) August 22, 2014 – Florida Gov. Rick Scott signed a bill to help foster children age 16 or older get around by car. The bill, HB 977, is a continuation of legislators’ efforts to improve the lives of Florida’s foster children and enable them to engage in normal age-appropriate activities. The 2013 legislative session saw the passage of a bill that trimmed the rules and regulations surrounding foster care that often made it difficult for children to participate in enriching activities with their peers, such as sleepovers and school field trips. Another 2013 bill extended […]


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Austin, TX (Law Firm Newswire) August 13, 2014 – The Senate Appropriations Committee has temporarily suspended a new truck safety regulation, fearing it will actually cause more accidents than it would prevent. “The suspended rule limited how often truckers may drive between 1:00 a.m. and 5:00 a.m. Its intention was to reduce fatigue, and thus reduce accidents. However, the trucking industry responded, pointing out that it would place even more big rigs on the road during daytime hours and, therefore, actually increase the likelihood of accidents,” explained trucking accident attorney Brooks Schuelke of Perlmutter & Schuelke LLP in Austin, Texas. […]


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San Francisco, CA (Law Firm Newswire) August 8, 2014 – A recent study released by Software Advice showed an interesting trend. Consumers needing an attorney trust Yelp more than any other website, including traditional lawyer-specific directories. There is more to learn behind any numbers, and Custom Legal Marketing Lab decided to dig a little deeper and produce a report for its CLM Lab. The initial Software Advice study was based on 3,465 participants. Yelp was their most popular and trusted source to search for attorneys, even ranking above named lawyer directories. The study also revealed that “70 percent of prospective […]


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Chicago, IL (Law Firm Newswire) August 8, 2014 – At-will employment means an employer may terminate a worker any time for many reasons. An employee may also quit any time for any reason, but should do so with respect and courtesy if possible. “If you are thinking about quitting your job, make certain you know if you live in an at-will-employment state, such as Illinois,” indicated Chicago employment attorney, Timothy Coffey. “For instance, in virtually all states, with the exception of Montana, workers are presumed to be at-will employees, unless the employment terms fit an exception to the prevailing rule, […]


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Brandon, FL (Law Firm Newswire) August 6, 2014 – Florida’s same-sex marriage ban suffered two legal defeats in July, and a ruling on a third case is still pending. On July 17, 2014, a circuit judge in Monroe County said the law violates the U.S. Constitution. Just over a week later on July 25, a Miami-Dade judge followed suit in a separate case. Each of those rulings, which would have permitted marriages to proceed in their respective counties, was stayed pending appeal by the state. A still-pending ruling on a federal case in Tallahassee would apply statewide. Attorney O. Reginald […]


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Virginia Beach, VA (Law Firm Newswire) August 5, 2014 – With careful financial planning, many people are able to enjoy a comfortable retirement and leave a substantial estate to their heirs. But one often-unconsidered factor has the potential to add a large additional expense to the balance sheet: the possibility that one will require long-term care in a skilled nursing facility. According to the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services, most people over age 65 will require long-term care services of some type in their lifetime, and 40 percent will require nursing home care for some period of time. Many […]


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