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Warrenton Law Blog

Wills and trusts will ensure that families are protected

Death is one of the few guarantees in life. Although death is inevitable, its a subject that is never easy to talk about. However, in the event of death, having a plan will ensure that assets and families are protected. Unfortunately, it's not uncommon for families in Virginia to put off planning for death until it's too late. Wills and trusts are often thought of as things that only rich families use, but these plans can be used by all families.

For families, having a will or a trust will save money and time. When death occurs without a will or a trust, assets that are left will go through the probate process. Probate is a process that can take several months and can be expensive, thanks to court costs and fees for attorneys. Also, anything that goes through probate becomes part of the public record, so privacy is forfeited. 

Protecting your rights as a small business contractor

Working as a contractor can offer many opportunities for success and freedom, but comes with a number of potential pitfalls that other work does not encounter. One of the most important aspects of operating a contracting business is developing strong contracts that meet the needs of both parties while keeping your rights as a contractor protected.

When problems do arise between contractors and clients, having a strong contract to back you up can prove invaluable. In instances where parties agree to a contract that leaves too much up to interpretation, both sides can intentionally interpret a contract the way that best suits them, and this can lead to legal conflicts that cost time and money, cutting into productivity and profits.

The Fourth Circuit rules on United States v. Bosyk

A recent appeal presented an issue to the Fourth Circuit Court of the United States due to accessing a website link that does not disclose the corresponding website link provides proper probable cause to search the residence.

According to appellant Nikolai Bosyk, his previous conviction relied on a search warrant that may be invalid due to several arguments.

Poe defends his name during ongoing EDA civil case

Nine defendants, including Donald F. Poe, were named in a civil suit filed in March 2019 for allegations involving misappropriate use of over $17 million. Recently, Poe defended himself during a bond hearing, where he emphasized his connections to the community.

His attorney, William Ashwell, argued on Poe's behalf and established Poe's long-term presence in Warren County. Ashwell also defended his client surrounding Poe's collaboration with the EDA civil litigation throughout the spring and summer.

Parenting plan agreements can show a unified front

Child custody conflicts can lead to serious damage for the children because they are dealing with a major life upheaval that involves the family foundation they've known their entire life. One of the best ways that parents can help children is to come up with the terms of the parenting plan early so they can start to have the stability they need to thrive.

Making the change to the new way of life is often challenging. Both parents have to work as a team, but this isn't always possible if the situation is tense. Trying to find ways to encourage a unified front should be a top priority.

How do DMV demerit points work?

Conviction on a traffic violation in Virginia can result in demerit points on your driving record. If you incur too many demerit points within a given timeframe, it may lead to suspension of your license. This means that you will have to give up your driving privileges, at least on a temporary basis. 

According to the Virginia Department of Motor Vehicles, the seriousness of a traffic violation determines its point value. The least severe violations incur three points, while the most serious are worth six points. Moderately severe violations carry a value of four points. 

Create a property and debt division checklist

As a married couple, there's a good chance you've commingled some (or all) of your assets at some point. In the event of a divorce, it's critical to understand what types of assets and debts are subject to division in Virginia.

Due to the many complexities of the law, it's critical to get organized and remain organized from day one. This means creating a property and debt division checklist as soon as possible.

What is an acute spinal cord injury?

The medical term "acute" refers to a condition that occurs suddenly. An acute spinal cord injury in Virginia, then, is one that occurs suddenly, often due to an accident or trauma. You should note that "acute" is not necessarily the same thing as "temporary." Depending on the type of injury you sustain, it may improve with time. However, it is also entirely possible that the damage an acute spinal cord injury causes may be permanent.

If you suspect that someone has sustained an acute spinal cord injury, get medical help right away. It is a medical emergency, and any amateur attempts at first aid may do further damage. According to Johns Hopkins Medicine, symptoms of acute spinal cord injury include the following: 

  • Breathing problems
  • Paralysis or lack of voluntary muscle movement
  • Muscle weakness
  • Loss of feeling in the chest or extremities
  • Loss of bladder or bowel function

Can one click become probable cause?

It's sometimes difficult to tell when a link on the internet is safe or not. There are people in the world who set up links for everything from practical jokes to scams. Keeping your wits about you while surfing the internet is crucial and can even have constitutional implications.

Imagine that link you clicked on one day eventually leads to the police showing up to your front door or even criminal charges. Can that one link click be probable cause for a search that allows law enforcement to gather evidence against you? This is what a recent case in Virginia tried to determine.

Snapping selfies while behind the wheel can be deadly

Despite warnings about the dangers of distracted driving and using a cellphone while behind the wheel, many drivers continue to engage in this hazardous practice. According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, 3,166 people died in distracted driving car accidents in 2017, and thousands more were injured in similar incidents. In addition to sending texts, composing emails and calling friends, a surprising number of drivers dare to snap selfies of themselves behind the wheel and post their pics on social media platforms. 

A quick look on Instagram will show an alarming 1,868 posts under #drivingselfies and 3,727 posts under #drivingselfie. Approximately 9,700 posts show up under #drivingtowork. Searches on Facebook and Snapchat bring up the same results, and drivers are not the only ones to take dangerous pictures behind the wheel. Pilots, train conductors and boaters are also joining in on this dangerous trend. Sadly, many have died after posting their final selfie on social media. 

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