Each year many Americans end up having to seriously for bankruptcy for no fault of their own. They have no idea about the bankruptcy court procedure and the forms to be filed. All that they know is they need to go to court and the court will do something to help them. That’s not how it is. The court will only help if you follow the process and submit the correct forms. The court will not magically make your debts disappear. If you are facing bankruptcy or you are overburdened with debt and you don’t know what to do, speak to an experienced North Salt Lake Utah bankruptcy lawyer. Time is very important. The earlier you speak the better it is for you. With each passing day, the debts will mount. The creditors and debt collectors will keep calling you. Once you file for bankruptcy these calls will stop. If your creditor or debt collector calls you after they know you have filed for bankruptcy, they are violating the law. An experienced North Salt Lake Utah bankruptcy lawyer will ensure that once you file for bankruptcy, your creditors and debt collectors won’t call you. If they continue to call you, you can take action against them with the help of your Experienced North Salt Lake Utah bankruptcy lawyer.
You may come across many “experts” who will advise you that there are viable alternatives to bankruptcy. These alternatives may work in some cases. Generally, these alternatives require you to make a huge payment upfront. Also, the alternatives need the consent of the creditors. The creditors are legally not required to agree to the alternative. Each creditor has to be dealt with on an individual basis. Your creditor may not agree to the alternative. In a bankruptcy your creditors do not have much say in how the debts will be paid. It’s the bankruptcy court that will determine the payments. In effect when you go to a creditor to renegotiate or use any other alternative to bankruptcy, the ball is essentially in the creditor’s court. Whereas in case of bankruptcy, the creditors can’t do much. Also, they cannot contact you for the debt once you have filed for bankruptcy. They can’t take any action to recover the debt because of the stay. If a creditor violates the stay, you can take action against the creditor.
How long your bankruptcy proceedings will take will depend on your bankruptcy chapter. As an individual debtor, you can file under chapter 7 or chapter 13. Chapter 7 is also called liquidation. As the name suggests, it is essentially a liquidation process. Once you file a chapter 7 bankruptcy, a bankruptcy trustee appointed by the bankruptcy court will take over all your non-exempt assets and the assets will be sold to pay off your creditors. Some of your assets are exempt assets and the trustee will not touch them. Before you file a Chapter 7 bankruptcy consult with an experienced North Salt Lake Utah bankruptcy lawyer to know if you can file a Chapter 7 bankruptcy.
Individuals also file for bankruptcy protection under Chapter 13. A chapter 13 bankruptcy is referred to as a reorganization. It essentially means that you reorganize your debts and pay off your creditors over a period of time. You have to submit a plan to the bankruptcy court explain how you intend to pay off your creditors. Once the plan is approved, you start making the payments. Sometimes you may be better of filing under Chapter 7 than under Chapter 13. An experienced North Salt Lake Utah bankruptcy lawyer can help you determine the right chapter for your bankruptcy filing. Filing under the wrong chapter can prove costly. Don’t take chances. Seek the advice of an experienced North Salt Lake Utah bankruptcy lawyer. When you are filing for bankruptcy, you will be stressed out and may not be in a position to take sound decisions. However, the decisions you take at this stage can play an important role in the outcome of your bankruptcy petition. Let an experienced North Salt Lake Utah bankruptcy lawyer assist you with the important decisions at this stage. You will not regret it.
If you have a few big assets like a home that you are seeking to protect, you should consider filing under Chapter 7. However, speak to an experienced North Salt Lake Utah bankruptcy lawyer. Getting the paperwork done in time is very important. Because you have defaulted on the payments, your creditors may have sold the account to debt collectors. You will have to list the debts that you owe and to whom. This information must be given to the bankruptcy court at the time of filing of your bankruptcy petition. Do not leave out any debts. A debt that you have left out will not be discharged and you will continue to remain liable for that debt. Your experienced North Salt Lake Utah bankruptcy lawyer can help you trace your debts and link them to your creditors.
Once you file a Chapter 7 bankruptcy proceeding in Utah, the bankruptcy court will review your papers to ensure that everything is in order. However, from the moment your petition is submitted to the court, your bankruptcy protection starts. Your creditors can no longer contact you. Your experienced North Salt Lake Utah bankruptcy lawyer will send notices to your creditors that you have filed a Chapter 7 bankruptcy. Should any creditor call you after you have filed a Chapter 7 bankruptcy in Utah, refer the creditor to you lawyer who will deal with the creditor.
Chapter 13 Bankruptcy
If you have a lot of assets and you have a steady source of income, you should consider a Chapter 13 bankruptcy. Speak to experienced North Salt Lake Utah bankruptcy lawyer to know if a Chapter 13 bankruptcy is an option for you. In a Chapter 7 bankruptcy, the bankruptcy trustee takes over your assets and sells them to pay off your debts. Unlike a Chapter 7 bankruptcy, in a Chapter 13 bankruptcy, the debts are paid off over a period of time and you continue to retain your assets. The most important part of a Chapter 13 bankruptcy is the repayment plan. Your experienced North Salt Lake Utah bankruptcy lawyer will assist you prepare a repayment plan that you can afford. The plan essentially lays down how you will pay off your debts over a period of time.
The First Step
If you are a Utah resident and you want to file for bankruptcy, speak to experienced North Salt Lake Utah bankruptcy lawyer today. Bankruptcy can help you get rid of serious credit problems. Bankruptcy is essentially a Federal law. By law, before you file for bankruptcy you must undergo credit counselling. This counselling must be done within 180 days from the date on which you have filed for bankruptcy. If its done before that, you will have to get it done again. Not all credit counselling programs qualify for this purpose. The credit counselling must be done by an organization that is approved by the Bankruptcy Trustee. The objective of this counselling is to help the debtor create a budget, manage money and use credit wisely.
Bankruptcy Means Test
Speak to experienced North Salt Lake Utah bankruptcy lawyer to know more about the Means Test. Once you have completed the credit counselling, you must pass the Means Test if you want to file a Chapter 7 bankruptcy in Utah. If you do not qualify for a Chapter 7 bankruptcy in Utah, you can file under Chapter 13. If the Means Test determines that you have enough money to pay off at least a portion of your debts, you will not qualify for Chapter 7. The idea is to ensure that Chapter 7 is used by debtors who cannot pay off any of their debts. If your household income is below the median Utah family income, you may qualify for filing under Chapter 7. If you do not qualify for filing a Chapter 7 bankruptcy in Utah, don’t worry. Consult an experienced North Salt Lake Utah bankruptcy lawyer. You can still file for bankruptcy protection under Chapter 13.
Court Supervised Repayment
In a Chapter 13 bankruptcy, the debtor submits a repayment plan to the court. If the court approves the plan, the debtor pays off the debts over a period of time under the supervision of the court. Under the time the repayment plan is in operation, your financial activities will be closely monitored by the bankruptcy trustee. If you want to buy a new car or spend on a luxury item during the operation of the repayment plan, speak to experienced North Salt Lake Utah bankruptcy lawyer. Such spending can incur the wrath of the bankruptcy court. However, your experienced North Salt Lake Utah bankruptcy lawyer may be able to get you permission from the court to buy a new car. If during the operation of the repayment plan, there is a substantial increase in your income, you may be required to divert the increase towards the payments under the plan. In a way, it will help you complete the payments faster and get a discharge sooner.
The creditor meeting is the time you will come face to face with your creditors after you have filed for bankruptcy in Utah. Never attend these meetings alone. Always have an experienced North Salt Lake Utah bankruptcy lawyer accompany you to the creditor meetings. It can be an emotionally charged moment for you – coming face to face with your creditors, including some who have been calling you every day asking for payment. Many of them may object to your bankruptcy filing saying that you have the means to pay off your debts. Do not speak anything during the hearing unless you are asked to do so by the trustee. If the trustee asks you any questions, let your experienced North Salt Lake Utah bankruptcy lawyer answer them. If you want to answer them yourself, talk to your attorney before answering them. This creditor meeting will be the only time you will have to attend the bankruptcy court. Don’t let this one court attendance spoil your chances of a successful bankruptcy. Hire the services of experienced North Salt Lake Utah bankruptcy lawyer.
Once all your debts are paid off, you will get discharge. You will no longer be liable for these debts. In a Chapter 7 bankruptcy case in Utah, a debt is discharged the moment the bankruptcy trustee pays off the creditor from the sale proceeds of your assets. In a Chapter 13, the debt is discharged after it is paid as per the repayment plan submitted by you and approved by the bankruptcy court. Not all debts can be discharged by bankruptcy. Certain debts will survive bankruptcy. An experienced North Salt Lake Utah bankruptcy lawyer will review your circumstances and explain to you which of your debts can be discharged and which of your debts will survive bankruptcy. Generally, you cannot discharge certain court ordered payments like child support. Student loans also survive bankruptcy. However, you may be able to get some benefits in bankruptcy with regard to your student loan debt. If you owe money to the IRS, chances are those debts will survive bankruptcy and you will have to deal with the IRS to settle those debts if you cannot pay them off in full.
Seek Legal Assistance
Bankruptcy is a serious event. Don’t take it lightly. There are many websites and books that offer directions on how to file for bankruptcy without an experienced North Salt Lake Utah bankruptcy lawyer. Don’t fall for the bait. Trying to navigate the complex maze of bankruptcy law can be like finding a needle in a haystack. Always hire the experienced North Salt Lake Utah bankruptcy lawyer. The lawyer is a professional and knows the bankruptcy law. Should your bankruptcy proceeding hit a roadblock, the lawyer will ensure that you can overcome that roadblock. What you need to keep in mind is that an experienced North Salt Lake Utah bankruptcy lawyer is your best friend when it comes to bankruptcy protection. The lawyer will not just file your bankruptcy petition in the bankruptcy court. He will stand by you all the way. Even after you get a discharge, an experienced North Salt Lake Utah bankruptcy lawyer will be there to advise you on how you can rebuilt your credit after bankruptcy.
North Salt Lake Utah Bankruptcy Lawyer Free Consultation
When you need legal help for a bankruptcy in North Salt Lake Utah, please call Ascent Law LLC (801) 676-5506 for your Free Consultation. We can help you with: Chapter 7 Bankruptcy. Chapter 12 Bankruptcy. Chapter 11 Bankruptcy. Chapter 9 Bankruptcy. Chapter 13 Bankruptcy. Adversary Proceedings. Discharge Problems. Obtaining Relief From the Automatic Stay. And Much More. We want to help you.
Ascent Law LLC
8833 S. Redwood Road, Suite C
West Jordan, Utah
84088 United States
Telephone: (801) 676-5506
Ascent Law LLC
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via Michael Anderson https://www.ascentlawfirm.com/bankruptcy-lawyer-north-salt-lake/
We hear on the news day after day that people are getting into accidents while under the influence of alcohol. How can we as a society prevent alcohol-related accidents among people who are dependent on alcohol? Is there a sociological approach?
Alcohol dependency is a problem that affects all of us. Therefore, we all have to do what we can to limit its negative impacts on society, whether taking a friend or family member to alcohol rehab centers or volunteering on a regular basis as a designated driver. The addiction to alcohol is chronic and progressive in nature, (Alcohol Research and Health). This disorder is a disease like any other medical conditions that needs medical interventions or treatments. Punishing offenders of alcohol induced infractions is only a part of the solution. For one thing, people who get into car accidents as a result of alcohol use will still continue to drink if they don’t get proper treatment for their alcohol dependency problem. To make matters worse, many alcoholics don’t believe that they have an alcohol problem until it is too late, either they lose their jobs or they get into a severe motor vehicle accident as a result of their alcohol dependency.
Our society should put in place a system that regulates the amount of alcoholic beverages an individual can consume at a bar in a given day. No one person should be given the opportunity to consume more alcohol than is legally allowed, in regards to blood-alcohol levels. Our society is making it too easy for people to get into trouble by drinking too much. If one beer is enough to prevent people from going over the legal drinking limit, then one beer should be the norm for anyone who enters a bar and orders beer. Our current stance is that people should be held accountable for their actions and therefore should take responsibility for such actions. The sad truth is that such strategy is not working because if it was we wouldn’t be hearing about so money alcohol-related motor vehicle accidents.
It does not make much sense to always allowing people the opportunity to drink as much as they want knowing that such actions will put people at increased risk for getting behind the wheel while under the influence of alcohol. A preventive strategy should be put into place. It is always easier to prevent the problem than to cure it. One should realize that it is much more difficult for a person under the influence to make wise decisions. We should not leave it up to the drunken person to make the decision as to whether to get behind the wheel or not. We should instead create an environment where people will have the opportunity to make such decision with a clear head.
Our society allows people to drink as much alcohol as they want at bars with no restrictions. Most of the time people drink because they refuse to face stressful situations in their lives. So, they go to the bar and drink beer after beer to get drunk, so they can temporarily rid themselves of their worries at home. We as a society should help these people by not making it so easy for them to drink as much as they want, especially at a bar. Granted, it is next to impossible to control how much a person drinks at home. However, it is very possible to control how much a person is allowed to drink at a bar. It is much better for society when a person drinks at home because that person is not compelled to get behind the wheel of a car and drive home, as that person is compelled to do while at a bar. People have no choice but to get behind the wheel of a car and drive home when at a bar, especially if that person’s judgment is impaired as a result of excessive amounts of alcohol intake.
We should not totally ban alcohol. Such actions did not work in the roaring twenties when alcohol was totally prohibited. Doing so would not work today. There were many illegal smuggling of alcohol going on in those days as a result of prohibition. The ban of alcohol in the 1920s gave rise to another problem-drugs. So, totally eradicating alcohol is not the answer, but regulating it could be a very good option in limiting the amounts of alcohol-related accidents on our streets.
Drink and drive accidents are common in every state. But, intoxicated drivers are also punished severely for causing drunk driving accidents. In some cases, the state establishes that the driver lost control over the steering wheel because he was under the effect of alcohol or drugs or the driver contravened the per se law, that is, the driver’s BAC or blood alcohol content was above the legal limit. Drink and drive problems are taking a heinous shape nationwide. But, stringent laws are also being implemented in to reduce drunk driving accidents.
In certain states, DUI arrests give the officer the right to ask the intoxicated person to undergo an alcohol evaluation test, urine test or breath test to find out if the person was actually drunk while driving. The intoxicated person accused in drinking and driving issue has no right to decide on any particular test or discuss issues with the attorney on submission of test samples. If you are prosecuted of any drunk driving accidents you will be left with no other alternative but to undergo any test as ordered by the officer of the law.
Voluntary license revocation of the intoxicated driver has been made mandatory in certain states in countries like the United States. Sometimes, along with license revocation the accused is sentenced to jail for a considerable period of time. For drink and drive issues, the cops can actually revoke you’re driving license and even arrest you. When your license is revoked you are given a receipt. Remember, you can apply for a temporary license because you are not forbidden to drive when a cop takes away your license. However, your temporary driving license is rendered null and void once a suspension order comes from DWI courts, sobriety courts and accountability courts, which have been established to punish offenders.
Habitual Substance Offender Statue this can cause jailing of the accused for a period of more than 8 years.
Felony DWI involves infringements within five years of the present charge.
Contact a lawyer if you are arrested for causing drink and drive accidents. Your lawyer will find out if post-conviction relief can be of any help to you.
If you are arrested for rash driving in a state like Utah and your alcohol evaluation tests prove that you are above the legal limit, contact a lawyer adept in handling DUI cases immediately. It is also imperative to know if the person is familiar with drink and drive rules and has handled cases on drink and drive accidents in Utah previously. Remember, each state has different rules for penalizing drivers accused in drinking and driving cases.
You also need to consider your DWI insurance claims if you are caught for drunk driving. If the insurance company comes to know that you have been accused for rash driving, you will have to pay a higher premium for being marked as a reckless driver.
Always remember the best way to avoid being getting tangled in drink and drive problems is to avoid driving when you are under the effect of alcohol in the first place.
Several penalties exist as a punishment for defendants arrested for DUI or driving under the influence of alcohol or drugs. These penalties include:
– Mandatory jail time
– Community service hours
– Suspension of license and;
– Loss of driving privilege
If the defendant is found guilty as charged, he or she will be asked to pay for a fine. It is as an addition to the classic punishments under law.
Generally, there are two major fines that you may face after the sentencing of your DUI case namely –
– Criminal fines and;
The difference of the two lies in the fact that the criminal fines are under the criminal case while the other fine, which is the restitution, is ordered under a civil case.
Furthermore, criminal fines or one they call punitive DUI fees is established by a specific state laws and the judge hearing the drinking and driving (DUI) case. The very purpose of the punitive DUI fines is to prevent future committal of the same crime by the defendant and to punish the defendant for the crime he or she has committed. The amount paid as fine varies depending on the facts uncovered during the case and the location or state where the DUI offense took place. First offense DUI fine ranges from $500 to $1000. However, in cases of multiple DUI arrests and convictions, the defendant may face for up to a $15,000 or higher fines.
Additional fines from the department of motor vehicles may also be imposed. Also aside from the fines, your driver’s license may also be revoked or suspended. If you want to file for an appeal or motion to have an administrative hearing in an attempt to rescind the case, you should also shoulder all the cost related to this.
DUI Lawyer Free Consultation
When you’ve been charged with drunk driving in Utah, please call Ascent Law LLC (801) 676-5506 for your free consultation. DUI. Criminal Charges. Sex Crimes. Drug Crimes. Assault. Battery. Rape. White Collar Crimes. Expungements. And More. We want to help you.
Ascent Law LLC
8833 S. Redwood Road, Suite C
West Jordan, Utah
84088 United States
Telephone: (801) 676-5506
Ascent Law LLC
4.9 stars – based on 67 reviews
via Michael Anderson https://www.ascentlawfirm.com/what-is-the-punishment-for-drunk-and-drive/
Maybe. Was the will filed with the court in Utah? If the will is on file in the Courts in Utah; then yes. If it wasn’t; then no.
Numerous individuals realize they need a will, however not every person comprehends what a will is or what it does.
A great many people realize that they ought to have a will, however many don’t have the foggiest idea what a will is and how it functions.
A will, now and then called a “last will and confirmation,” is a record that expresses your last wishes. It is perused by a province court after your passing, and the court ensures that your last wishes are completed.
What a Will Does
Most people use a will to leave instructions about what should happen to their property after they die. However, you can also use a will to
• Name an executor.
• Name guardians for children and their property.
• Decide how debts and taxes will be paid.
• Provide for pets.
• Serve as a backup to a living trust.
You shouldn’t try to use a will to:
• Put conditions on your gifts. (I give my house to Susan if she finishes college.)
• Leave instructions for final arrangements.
• Leave property for your pet.
• Make arrangements for money or property that will be left another way. (Property in a trust or property for which you’ve named a pay-on-death beneficiary.)
How to Write a Will
You can compose a will yourself, or you can contract a legal advisor to keep in touch with one for you. On the off chance that you keep in touch with one yourself, you’ll need to locate a cooperative attitude layout to support you. To get familiar with finding and utilizing a cooperative attitude layout read Utilizing a Will Format and Kinds of Will Formats.
•Do you need to name a few degrees of agents?
•Do you need to name more than one agent to cooperate?
•Do you need to name gatekeepers for your youngsters or their property?
•Do you need to make a trust for your kids, with the goal that they get your property when their more established than 18?
What’s more, a cooperative attitude making format will enable you to know when you should see a legal counselor for assistance composing your will. For instance, you should converse with a legal counselor on the off chance that you:
•Want to exclude your companion or kid.
•Are stressed that somebody may challenge your will.
•Want to give cash and care to pets after your passing.
•Want to control what befalls your property long after your passing.
•Are stressed over home duties.
Most probate records are open record, accessible to anybody needing data on a perished individual or their property. The area probate representative keeps probate records that you can look face to face, or you might have the option to see some data on the web. Looking through probate records can uncover procedures in which you may be by and by intrigued, for example, a relative whose domain is being probated. It’s likewise a decent method to do parentage research and assemble data about your family.
Probate/home documents incorporate the procedures of all business identifying with:
•the demonstrating of a will, in situations where there was one, or
•to a definitive settling of a domain in occurrences where the individual kicked the bucket intestate (without leaving a legitimate will).
•copy of the will,
•inventory of assets,
•claims from loan bosses, and
•general family and money related data.
Probate is the procedure that happens after somebody bites the dust. It includes a ton of administrative work and is generally directed by the probate court in the locale where the individual kicked the bucket. The job of probate is to guarantee the expired’s will is substantial, assembling all her property and resources, taking care of her tabs and charges and, at last, conveying property to beneficiaries. These obligations tumble to the individual names as agent in the expired’s will. On the off chance that the expired passed on without leaving a will, the court will delegate a capable individual, called an executive, to deal with the obligations of probate.
Utah Last Will and Testament
A last will and testament is a significant advance in arranging the conveyance of your bequest (genuine and individual property) upon your demise. Utah wills license the deceased benefactor, the individual composition the will, to accommodate a mate, kids, other friends and family, and pets after his demise just as to name an individual delegate for the domain.
Not to be mistaken for a will, an Utah living will, or medicinal services order, gives directions should you become debilitated and unequipped for settling on choices with respect to your therapeutic consideration.
Do You Need a Last Will and Testament
Albeit a last will and testament isn’t legitimately required, without a will, state laws (called laws of intestacy) decide the dispersion of a domain’s advantages. Since the result may not match with the decedent’s (the individual who passed away) wishes, it is commonly prudent to make a last will and testament.
Notwithstanding giving the chance to coordinate resource dissemination, an Utah last will and confirmation additionally enables the departed benefactor to cause a beneficent blessing, to make a trust for any individual, name a lawful watchman for minor youngsters, or make a “pet trust” so as to accommodate the consideration of a creature after its proprietor’s passing. The will likewise enables the deceased benefactor to name an individual to manage the home and ensure the will is appropriately dealt with. This individual is known as the agent.
Before the conditions of a will can be acknowledged, the will must be demonstrated in probate court. Probate is the court-directed procedure of appropriating the home of an expired individual.
When an Utah will is demonstrated, the agent can continue to wrap up the bequest, which incorporates gathering and ensuring property, satisfying obligations, and afterward appropriating resources.
Utah offers a streamlined probate process for bequests that don’t surpass $25,000 in worth and don’t contain genuine property.
How Can I Get a Copy of a Last Will & Testament?
Don’t expect to see your grandfather’s will while he is alive, unless he decides to show it to you. While the testator — the person making a will — is alive, his last testament is private and completely revocable. Your grandfather can change it on whim by writing a codicil or drafting a superseding will. However, when the testator dies, his will becomes effective — and public. The court opens probate on the will and any member of the public can view and copy the document in the clerk’s office.
Duplicates Of Wills
Where the area keeps up online records, you can look through the database on the web for the name of the individual whose bequest you are keen on. Info the individual’s last name; last name and first name; or last name, first name and center beginning. You can likewise look by lawyer name, court docket or case number. An online hunt commonly will give you the case record for the archives you are searching for. Nonetheless, you will most likely be unable to see the genuine reports in the record.
Be that as it may, be persevering. Since probate happens in every single region over the U.S., odds are you will have the option to find the suitable court’s online data.
Here are a few quests that you can attempt:
• “_________ (embed proper name) District probate records”
• “_________ (embed proper name) District probate court”
• “_________ (embed proper name) District probate dockets”
• “_________ (embed proper name) district court records”
When you have found the proper district and view the probate court docket on the web, normally the means engaged with getting a duplicate of a will or other probate archive legitimately from the probate court will incorporate the accompanying:
•Appearing face to face and requesting a duplicate of the will or other probate reports, or making a composed solicitation by fax or mail if applying face to face isn’t possible.
•Paying a duplicating expense for the quantity of pages that the will or other probate archive contains. These charges ordinarily extend from $1.00 to a couple of dollars for each page.
•Providing a self-tended to, stepped envelope for mailing the duplicates if the solicitation isn’t made face to face.
When making a Will you have to think about who will be named as your own delegate or agent to regulate your home, who you will name as gatekeeper and trustee of minor youngsters if your companion doesn’t endure you and who will get your property. You ought to likewise consider assessment issues. The individual selected as agent or head is regularly your life partner, however you ought to likewise name an other, in the event that your life partner predeceases you. The individual you name ought to be an individual you can trust and who will coexist with the recipients named in the Will.
In the occasion your life partner predeceases you, the gatekeeper you name will have genuine guardianship of your minor youngsters except if a court chooses another person. The trustee you delegate to oversee a trust you built up will be accountable for the advantages of the trust to support the minor recipients.
For the most part, a Will must be marked within the sight of in any event two observers (three for Vermont) who likewise sign the Will. A legal official open will likewise need to sign if the Will contains a self-demonstrating oath. For the most part, a self-demonstrating sworn statement enables the Will to be confessed to probate without other proof of execution.
Joint Property: Numerous individuals don’t comprehend that joint property may go outside your Will and furthermore once in a while accept that it will go through their Will. They don’t comprehend the noteworthiness of joint possession. The issue is normal in the accompanying regions, gave as models:
(a) Land: Frequently, a couple will possess land as joint occupants with privileges of survivorship. In the event that one gathering bites the dust, the enduring party gets the property paying little mind to what the Will gives. This is normal and for the most part adequate. Nonetheless, if this isn’t your longing you should change the responsibility for property to occupants in like manner or other type of possession. On the off chance that you possess land as inhabitants in like manner, at that point you may assign who will get a lot of the property at your demise. This issue can be an issue when ignorant people accept title to land as joint occupants with privileges of survivorship yet truly expected to leave their offer to, for instance, offspring of an earlier marriage.
(b) Financial balances/Testaments of Store, Stock, Retirement Plans, IRA’s and other sort Property: a similar possession as land can be made of these ventures. Truth be told, numerous Banks routinely spot Financial balances and Endorsements of Store in the joint inhabitant with right of survivorship type of possession if more than one individual is on the record or Disc, without educating you concerning the outcome of same. In circumstances where the people are a couple and there is no issue or worry over separation or youngsters from past relationships, this might be the best strategy. In any case, with separation on the ascent, pre-marriage understandings and different relationships being normal, the gatherings might accomplish something that was not their goal. Another regular dangerous circumstance is the place a parent has more than one youngster yet just a single kid dwells in the main residence of the parent. The parent may put the name of the youngster who dwells there on all records, Compact disc’s and different ventures for accommodation reasons and build up a joint occupant with right of survivorship circumstance without understanding that lone that kid will be qualified for those benefits at the parent’s demise. Basically, you ought to know when you obtain a benefit or venture precisely how it is titled.
Estate Lawyer Free Consultation
When you need legal help finding a will online in Utah, or you need estate help, please call Ascent Law LLC (801) 676-5506 for your Free Consultation. We can help you with Probate. Estate Planning. Last Will and Testaments. Powers of Attorney. Health Care Directives. Revocable Trusts. Asset Protection Trusts. Irrevocable Trusts. Estate Disputes. Estate Lawsuits. Estate Litigation. Estate Mediations. Estate Arbitrations. And Much More. We want to help you.
Ascent Law LLC
8833 S. Redwood Road, Suite C
West Jordan, Utah
84088 United States
Telephone: (801) 676-5506
Ascent Law LLC
4.9 stars – based on 67 reviews
via Michael Anderson https://www.ascentlawfirm.com/can-you-look-up-a-will-online/
There can be no divorce without marriage. Both are interconnected since the beginning of civilization.
Marriage is called a “covenant” throughout the Pentateuch and the rest of the Old Testament.1 Proverbs 2:17 speaks about the adulterous wife who “ignored the covenant made before God,” and Malachi says that one of the witnesses of any “marriage covenant” is God himself (2:14). Ezekiel employs a vivid picture of God marrying the nation of Judah, in which he frequently referred to their marriage covenant (Ezek. 16:8, 59-62). He describes in intimate and overtly sexual language how God entered into marriage, including the ceremony at which he said: “I spread the edge of my cloak over you, and covered your nakedness: I pledged myself to you and entered into a covenant with you” (Ezek. 16:8).
A marriage covenant is also referred to in many of the passages that speak about a covenant with God. The word “covenant” may mean a “marriage covenant” or a “treaty covenant,” and often in these passages it means both. The marriage covenant of God with his people is, at times, almost synonymous with his treaty covenant with them. For example, the comment “I will remember my covenant with you in the days of your youth, and I will establish with you an everlasting covenant,” which occurs in the description of God’s marriage to Israel (Ezek. 16:60), sounds very similar to Ezekiel 37:26, which speaks about the treaty covenant of God with his people. A similar mixture of these two ideas occurs in Jeremiah 31:31-32, where the new everlasting covenant is compared with “my covenant which they broke, though I was their husband.” These two concepts are sometimes mixed deliberately in order to draw out comparisons. For example, Jeremiah 11:10 appears to refer to a treaty covenant (“they have broken the covenant that I made with their ancestors”) but later verses contain references to Israel as a wayward wife (Jer. 11:15, “What right has my beloved in my house, when she has done vile deeds?”).
The phrase “marriage covenant” was the constant and normative phrase used to describe the legal framework of marriage in the Old Testament and in its surrounding cultures. Marriage covenants in the rest of the ancient Near East help us to understand the meaning of this phrase in the Old Testament.
The legal basis of marriage was called a “covenant” because, like all other types of covenant, it was an agreement between two parties that contained stipulations and sanctions. A marriage covenant, like any other covenant, included details of payment, the agreement to stipulations by two parties, a set of penalties for the party who did not keep these stipulations, and a legally binding witnessed ceremony or document that recorded all these matters.
A marriage covenant in the Old Testament was like all other ancient Near Eastern covenants. The Old Testament refers to the payments involved, the stipulations of the agreement, and the penalties that ensued if these stipulations were not kept. The Old Testament also uses the same legal language for all these aspects of a marriage covenant as found in other ancient Near Eastern marriage covenants.
Payment varied in different cultures and at different times throughout the time period covered by the Old Testament. The Old Babylonian culture had various payments. The terhatu or “bride-price,” which sealed the betrothal, was paid by the groom to the bride’s father. This averaged 10 shekels, or about 10 months wages. The sheriqtu or “dowry” was paid by the bride’s father to the bride. The Jewish equivalent of the terhatu was called the mohar. The husband also gave the bride gifts (Gen. 24:22). The Jewish equivalent of the sheriqtu was known as the nedunyah. scheme in the city states of Old Babylon and in other ancient Near Eastern cultures.
The purpose of these payments was to give security to the marriage, as well as being the legal seal on the marriage covenant. In some senses the covenant appears to be a sale, in which the groom buys his bride from her father. However, it was understood that the father would give a dowry well in excess of the bride-price, so that the net payment was made by the bride’s father to the groom. The dowry could be regarded as equivalent to the daughter’s share of the family estate, held in trust for her by her husband. In effect, therefore, the payment by the bride’s father helped the couple to establish their home.
The dowry also gave personal security to the bride. The dowry continued to belong to the bride, so if her husband died or divorced her, she had money to live on. She might also get a portion of the estate in addition to her dowry. The only exception to this was when the wife caused the divorce. In some arrangements the wife would get only half the dowry in this case, though usually she lost all rights to the dowry.
These payments also added security to the marriage itself. The bride price, which was paid by the groom to the bride’s father, represented many months wages. This helped to ensure that marriage was not entered into lightly. The whole system of payments was weighted against divorce, because whoever caused the divorce was penalized financially. If the husband divorced his wife without cause, he usually returned the dowry, and if the wife divorced her husband without cause, she lost her right to some or all of her dowry. However, if the divorce was caused by one partner breaking a stipulation in the marriage contract, the guilty partner was deemed to have caused the divorce and the innocent partner kept the dowry. For example, the seventeenth century B.C.E. Babylonian high priest Enlil tried to escape the repayment of this dowry by accusing his wife of disloyalty, but his charges were found to be false.
Deuteronomy 24:1-4 is an example of these payments and penalties in action. This passage is an item of case law28 about a man who wanted to remarry a wife whom he had divorced, and who had been married again in the meantime. The ruling states that she would now be unclean for him. The reason for this ruling can be traced to the financial payments and penalties involved in marriage and divorce. The main difference between these two marriages was the financial consequence for the woman. The first marriage ended when the man cited a valid ground for divorce, namely “a matter of indecency.” The fact that he had a valid ground for the divorce meant that she lost her right to her dowry. The second marriage ended without any valid grounds for divorce, either because the man “hated/disliked” her (which was a technical term for a groundless divorce), or because he died. In either case the woman would have kept her dowry. If she had not brought a dowry into this second marriage, she would nevertheless have been awarded an equivalent amount. Westbrook thus noted that this would give the first husband a financial motive for remarrying his wife, because he would then have both her new dowry and her old one. This law therefore forbids the first husband from getting financial benefit in this way.
Marriage covenants in the ancient Near East were written and enacted exactly like any other business or diplomatic covenant. Like any other agreement, they were based on both trust and penalties. The penalties as well as the benefits of keeping the stipulations of the marriage covenant were clearly outlined. There was a recognized system of financial penalties for the partner who initiated divorce without good cause, or for the partner who broke the stipulations of the covenant. The terminology of marriage documents is also similar in all respects to other business transactions. This is all reflected in the Old Testament language and law.
Like any other contract, the ancient Near Eastern marriage contract was an agreement between two parties that also defined the penalties incurred by the party who failed to keep the agreement.
There is a general understanding throughout the ancient Near East that a wife can be divorced at will by a husband and have her dowry returned, but, if she has done wrong, she does not receive her dowry. There is also some evidence that wives were able to divorce their husbands in some situations.
South Salt Lake Utah Divorce
With the hindsight of the New Testament, Genesis 2:24 might also be interpreted as a condemnation of divorce. The rest of the Pentateuch, however, fails to speak against divorce. Abraham divorced his wife Hagar, the slave, and it is recorded as if God approved (Gen. 21:12).
There is much more about divorce that is not stated. There is nothing about whether these were the only grounds for divorce, or whether or when the wife should have her dowry returned. There is nothing about the rights of children to their father’s estate. There is nothing about the rights of the woman after she is divorced, whether she is allowed to remarry, or where she should live after her divorce. There is no indication of the procedures for divorce, such as witnesses or other legal necessities.
Divorce is not synonymous with marriage breakdown. It is, on the contrary, merely the legal recognition of the fact that the marriage relation ended at some time in the past. A divorce cannot be secured unless and until this fact has been established. Many married persons have terminated their marital relations in fact but have felt content to live apart without obtaining a divorce. Everyone knows of married couples not living together and with no present intention of being divorced. They may have shunned the divorce court because of the trouble or expense involved, because of moral scruples, or for fear of incurring social disapproval. People often are timid about advertising their domestic troubles to their friends and acquaintances for social or business reasons and hence avoid the publicity, not to say scandal, sometimes involved in divorce procedure. The public submission of the type of evidence necessary to secure divorce often serves as a deterrent with persons of sensitive nature. If you are considering divorce, speak to an experienced South Salt Lake Utah divorce lawyer.
A divorce client frequently tries to use his meetings with his divorce lawyer to unburden himself about his unhappiness over his divorce and the direction his life is taking. Does the divorce lawyer listen to the client and offer him emotional support, or does he insist that the consultations focus on the client’s legal case?
A divorce client refuses to consider a negotiated agreement and demands that her lawyer fight her case in court as a way of punishing her husband. Does the divorce lawyer pursue the client’s demands in court, or does she try to persuade the client to rethink her goals and expectations for the divorce in order to reach a settlement?
A divorce lawyer is preparing for settlement talks with an opposing attorney with whom he has never negotiated before. Does the lawyer significantly inflate his opening demands, or does he make a more modest proposal that he considers fair and reasonable?
A divorce lawyer has a client who wishes to talk directly with her spouse about the terms of their settlement. Does the lawyer permit her client to take part in fashioning an agreement, or does she insist that all negotiations be strictly between herself and the opposing counsel?
Simply put, the debate over legal professionalism revolves around the degree to which general professional identities, formal training, and rules of conduct guide the choices of individual lawyers in practice.
Professional bar rhetoric suggests that the most powerful influences on lawyers’ decisions come from law school socialization and formal codes of professional responsibility, which promote and enforce shared expertise, norms, and obligations. An alternative perspective points to economic incentives as the crucial determinants of lawyers’ conduct. That is, through their conditions of work, lawyers’ choices, like those of many professionals, are shaped by their own material interests or those of their employers or clients, even though they may be rationalized by reference to professional norms. Yet a third perspective emphasizes the role of personal identities and values in lawyers’ decision making. In this view, lawyers’ individual values or personal characteristics such as gender, race, religion, or class influence their professional conduct.
Each of these viewpoints yields a different explanation for the choices lawyers make in their daily work lives. Consider, for example, the attorney who is trying to decide whether or not to represent a poor client. If the lawyer agrees to accept the case, the professionalism account might suggest that she has internalized the legal profession’s norm of public service and feels obliged to help those who cannot afford a lawyer. However, the workplace version might see a struggling sole practitioner who cannot afford to pass up even the possibility of a modest fee. Alternatively, the personal identity perspective might attribute the lawyer’s decision to take the case to the fact that as a woman, the lawyer empathizes with the abused wife and seeks to use her legal skills to help women in difficult situations.
Similarly, if the lawyer decides against representing the client, it might be because, having already achieved the American Bar Association’s target pro bono work for the year, she feels that she has done her professional duty. Or perhaps the attorney rejects the case because as a junior law firm associate, she is under considerable workplace pressure from firm partners to meet her annual quota of billable hours. Or it may be that she is tired of doing divorce work and does not want to be stereotyped as the advocate for all women.
What about the situation in which a divorce client badly wants and needs help in sorting out his personal life? How should the lawyer respond? Perhaps he declines to provide such assistance because he believes his legal training did not prepare him to be a therapist, and that it would be unethical for him to pretend to do so. Or maybe it is because in his low-cost, high-volume practice, the lawyer simply cannot spare the time to talk to clients about their personal problems. Possibly, the lawyer discourages his client from venting his feelings because he finds such issues painful and difficult to talk about. If, however, the lawyer decides to engage in counseling the client, is it the result of a family law course in law school that opened his eyes to the psychological effects of divorce? Is it because his experience as a divorce specialist has taught him that affluent clients expect to be provided with emotional as well as legal counseling—and are able and willing to pay for it? Or is it perhaps because this lawyer is naturally sensitive and empathetic and would not dream of silencing a person in distress?
Divorce lawyers vary in their understandings of professionalism in divorce practice. Some of these differences are shaped by the nature of their practices. Some derive from individual variations in character and values, while others are rooted in gender roles, age, and experience, and still others in the organization of their law firms. Specialists often understand their roles in divorce cases differently than do general practice lawyers. Unlike sole practitioners who do divorce work, lawyers employed by law firms face demands to be attentive to the interests of partners and to firm policies. Attorneys whose clients have few resources find themselves pressed to structure and limit their time in ways that lawyers with well-to-do clients do not.
The American Academy of Matrimonial Lawyers (AAML) addressed the professional dilemma over representation in 1991 by adopting standards of conduct for divorce lawyers entitled Bounds of Advocacy (American Academy of Matrimonial Lawyers 1991). In this report, the Academy criticized existing bar codes for not providing adequate guidance to divorce lawyers and for ignoring the uniqueness of family law. The AAML standards rejected overzealous representation of partisan advocacy and articulated instead “the much greater level of professionalism” to which matrimonial lawyers should aspire (American Academy of Matrimonial Lawyers 1991: 4). The norms for professional conduct set out in the Bounds of Advocacy are indeed the informal norms of the “reasonable” divorce lawyer that we encountered in our interviews with divorce attorneys: prescriptions to encourage settlement; to avoid hardball legal tactics; to treat opposing counsel with candor, courtesy, and cooperation.
The common norm of the reasonable divorce lawyer defined both typical and expected behavior for handling most divorce cases. Through this norm, attorneys found guidance from their peers in how to make the difficult judgments that are central to the professional role. Reasonable lawyers advocated for their clients by knowing the law of divorce and making independent judgments about how to apply that law rather than by identifying too strongly with clients. They sought negotiated settlements where appropriate and avoided unnecessary litigation. In short, the norm of reasonableness in divorce appeared to respond to and incorporate some of the critiques of adversary advocacy. Reasonable lawyers were said to reduce costs (financial and emotional) for clients, more accurately apply substantive law (rather than being caught up in strategic manoeuvres), and produce qualitatively better and more equitable case outcomes.
Divorce Legal Framework
The law provides the basic structure for defining advocacy. As the comment on Model Rule 3.1 states, “The law, both procedural and substantive, establishes the limits within which an advocate may proceed” (American Bar Association 1995). The grounds for divorce in Utah allow both traditional fault criteria and no-fault, with equitable distribution of property and presumptions of shared legal custody of children. Knowledge of the law and experience with judicial decision making in divorce have led lawyers to construct informal norms about how to advocate for their clients. The communities of divorce lawyers have developed standards and shared reference points that define professionalism in practice. Not only does divorce bargaining occur “within the shadow of the law” but so too have attorneys’ ideas about the meaning of advocacy developed and changed within that legal shadow. Arguing zealously that a divorce client is blameless and deserves the bulk of the marital assets simply makes no sense to lawyers operating within a legal framework that ignores fault and presumes a 50–50 division of property. In other words, for most divorce cases, lawyers saw themselves engaged in something more closely resembling problem solving than adversarial negotiation.
In addition to the shift to no-fault, the introduction of child support guidelines significantly changed the law of divorce. Congress passed a law in 1984 to encourage child support enforcement, and states seeking federal funds were required to institute numerical formulas to guide judges in setting child support awards. The federal Family Support Act of 1988 further strengthened the 1984 law by making mandatory these mathematical formulas to set support amounts and strictly limiting deviations from them. Many states including Utah rewrote their child support laws to comply with these federal mandates.
“Winning” in divorce was not only unlikely as a matter of law, but it was also a costly goal to seek. That is, the costs of pursuing every possible avenue for a client within the bounds of the law often outweighed benefits to be gained. Divorce lawyers thus tried to convince clients to settle divorces by touting the comparative advantage of settlement over trials, rather than talking about fairness in settlement. A custody fight imposes costs on the “winning” party in terms of damaged long-term relationships that lawyers believed usually outweigh any gain. Divorce lawyers did not see divorce conflicts as zero-sum games.
The transaction costs of fighting for a greater share of property or more generous visitation were high, lawyers felt, and those costs rarely made economic sense for their clients. Thus, lawyers were attentive to the costs of alternative strategies in negotiation. Professional practice requires understanding what a job entails so that it can be done efficiently. Seeking a fair settlement rather than the most for a client, and opening divorce negotiations with a reasonable offer rather than an extreme one, provided lawyers with an efficient solution to the problem of negotiating an agreement.
When lawyers tender offers in negotiation, they communicate important information about their own judgment and operating style, information that is easily and quickly shared within a small legal community. At the same time, lawyers’ offers communicate something to the other lawyer about how she is viewed—as another professional to be treated with respect and courtesy or as an adversary to be fought.
Legal rules, concepts, and procedures in family law all influenced the nature of advocacy in divorce. The substantive legal rules of no-fault divorce rejected one-sided case outcomes and presumed instead an equal division of property and some sharing of legal responsibility for children. Strict child support guidelines further removed issues from legal dispute. The resulting legal framework thus provided few incentives for divorce lawyers in most cases to try to “win big” for their clients.
The ideology of legal professionalism includes a commitment to altruism. The realities of practice, however, place limits on selflessness. Scholars of the professions see as a core problem of professional practice “the tension between the provision of affordable and conscientious service to others, and the economic interest of those who provide it”. The American Bar Association’s Commission on Professionalism placed the tension between service and self-interest at the center of its inquiry, questioning whether the profession has lived up to its public service commitment. The formal rules of professional responsibility highlight this conflict without resolving context for many day-to-day decisions by divorce lawyers, decisions through which lawyers both construct and enact the variable meanings of professionalism in practice.
In a contested divorce, witness testimony and evidence can play an important role in the outcome of the trial. An experienced South Salt Lake Utah divorce lawyer can be your best friend if you are in the midst of a contested divorce.
Just as a lawyer may not himself make false statements or offer false evidence, he has certain kinds of obligations to the other side’s evidence as well. An attorney may not “unlawfully obstruct another person’s access to evidence or unlawfully alter, destroy or conceal a document or other material having potential evidentiary value.” He or she must make a “diligent effort to comply with a legally proper discovery request by an opposing party.” The prohibitions on a lawyer’s making a false statement, however undetectable, or presenting false evidence, however effective, are examples of the way in which the constitutive rules of the trial incorporate the lawyer’s “natural” or full knowledge of events. They are, in a sense, limitations on the trial’s artifice. By contrast, other constitutive rules require that a lawyer put aside his own full knowledge and judgment and defer to the trial’s artifice. By prohibiting a lawyer from alluding during trial to “any matter the lawyer does not reasonably believe is relevant or that will not be supported by admissible evidence,” the rules enjoin, as a matter of ethical obligation, deference to all of the policies embedded in the law of evidence. An attorney may neither assert a personal knowledge of the facts, except under those very rare occasions on which a trial attorney may testify, nor state her personal opinion as to “the justness of a cause, the credibility of a witness, the culpability of a civil litigant, or the guilt or innocence of an accused.” It is only what can be proven subject to the public rules of the trial that affects the outcome.
Though the privileges, including the lawyer-client privilege, are part of the law of evidence, the lawyer’s duty of confidentiality goes beyond the attorney-client privilege, which applies only to confidential communications from the client and prevents compelled disclosures at trial. The duty of confidentiality prohibits the lawyer from revealing anything, whatever its source, “relating to the representation.” This affects the trial as well. It allows a lawyer to rely on what can be dozens of often slight misunderstandings by witnesses and opposing counsel that are helpful to his case. He does not have to tell the court that they “don’t quite have it right.” This is unlike the singular instance of “false testimony” offered by a witness whom she herself calls, where she has a duty to take “remedial measures” based on her own knowledge, whatever its source. Here, again, it is the artifice of the trial, embedded in the ethical and evidentiary rules operating together, that reigns.
Hence the law of professional responsibility pushes the trial in two very different directions. It imposes on a lawyer an ethical obligation to bend all his imagination and effort to present a case, tell a story, that serves his client’s own perceived interests. Facts are purposes. Yet against this general obligation stand specific and limited prohibitions: the client deserves counsel on the wisdom of his perceived interests in light of how the legal order will view those interests; access to evidence should not be obstructed; false statements should not be made nor false evidence presented; and the lawyer should respect the principles and policies embedded in the evidentiary rules. Purposefulness must respect those things which we cannot, or should not, change at will. The tension is between energy and respect. In any case, the rules of professional responsibility, both in reinforcing and limiting the trial’s artifice, make it what it is.
The nonopinion rule is, in the trial courtroom, supported by a range of objections “to the form of the question.” Most prominently, these objections prevent the lawyer’s “leading” most witnesses on direct examination, calling for conclusions, or assuming facts not yet in evidence. These rules prohibit some of the most common devices of ordinary conversation and have entangled thousands of young lawyers in their nets, reducing them to an embarrassed silence. These rules were not constructed in order to enforce the legal profession’s priestly prerogatives, to allow only the initiated to engage in the activities that invoke the power of the legal system. Rather, they enforce a certain vision of the form that direct examination, and so witness testimony, ought to have. They are rules that serve as “mere abridgement of the activity itself; they do not exist in advance of the activity.” The envisioned activity is lay witness testimony about any episode as a rhythm of physical description and then chronological narrative of events and actions.
The first can be accomplished without leading questions and questions that call for conclusions or the assumption of facts not yet in evidence only because the witness testimony has an implicit structure— that of spatial relationships. In fact, one of the most common rhetorical devices for description of the scene is the “walk around.” (“Now, as you entered the house and looked to your left, what did you see?” “And as your gaze came around to the area right in front of you, what did you see there?”) The second step has its implicit structure as well—that of temporal relationships. The most common question in direct examination is simply, “What happened next?” Now this simplicity is deceiving: as we have seen, a fair amount of craft can go into the structuring of a direct examination. My point here is only that unless the examination is conducted as a rhythm of physical description, and chronological narrative, it will inevitably violate the strictures against leading, calling for conclusions, and assuming facts not (yet) in evidence. Basic elements of narrative structure are embedded in the evidentiary rules that constitute direct examination.
Materiality is the notion that, more than any other, serves to limit the range of the inquiry at the trial, that keeps “every witness box from becoming a confessional.” Most broadly, it seeks to limit the trial to serving corrective or commutative justice, restoring a party to his legally legitimate expectations (or “rights”), without regard to broader inquiries concerning what we now call distributive or social justice, the fairness of the overall distribution of benefits and burdens between the parties. In a liberal society, it serves specifically to suppress inquiry into the moral character, or desert, of the parties.
Materiality thus requires that every unit of evidence offered be related to an element of the crime, claim, or defense—the propositions that the party with the burden of proof must establish in order to prevail. It has a dark side. The dark side is the threat it poses to “the truth, the whole truth, and nothing but the truth.” Materiality serves to assure that the truth which emerges at trial is a “legal truth,” determined solely by those aspects of the case that the law deems “of consequence.” Insofar as the legal perspective on the case deviates from a compelling moral perspective, for example, the trier of fact will be unaware of morally relevant aspects of the situation. Sometimes the gap between morally relevant and legally relevant may be justified, but ultimately it must be morally justified. And even if justified, it risks absolutizing the legal artifice by detaching it from its moral foundations, and so forgetting “that man is only the master, not the creator of the world.”
The other element of relevance is logical relevance: the unit of evidence must actually be probative of (or disprove) a legally determined element of the claim or defense.
To be logically relevant, a proposed piece of evidence need only make a proposition of consequence to the determination of the litigation (a “material” proposition) more or less likely than it would be without the evidence. It must ever so slightly alter the balance of probabilities. Once it achieves that level of probative force, it can be excluded only for what are basically pragmatic reasons, and only if those reasons “substantially” outweigh its probative force. Thus evidence is relevant if it makes any material proposition ever so slightly more or less likely than it would be without the evidence, unless certain pragmatic considerations substantially outweigh its probative value. That is a strong tilt toward admissibility, a tilt which approaches the vertical if understood practically.
The human mind seeks to determine historical truth (“what happened”) by constructing plausible narratives that are both consistent with the “web of belief” and supported by reliable evidence. The notions “consistent,” “supported,” and “reliable” are subject to varying interpretations and raise deep questions. A trial judge will not usually make his or her relevancy determinations by considering the direct logical relationship of the evidence offered to a material proposition. Rather, he or she will situate the evidence offered within the proponent’s factual theory of the case. But an advocate will almost always have choices to make among theories of the case and always will have choices among details of the factual theory, “subplots” if you will.
There are deep reasons why most evidence has “multiple relevances,” some legitimate and some illegitimate. The illegitimate inferences may invoke substantive moral or political norms outside the instructions for the ultimate decision of the case, or may involve lines of reasoning—from a party’s “character” for example, or from a hearsay statement—that the law of evidence determines insufficiently reliable on which to base a purely factual determination that must be made if the trier of fact is following the norms in the instructions. Recall that evidence may be excluded only if its probative value is substantially outweighed by the dangers of unfair prejudice, such as that from an “illegitimate inference,” and one can understand the inevitability of evidence whose significance can overwhelm the substantive legal norms by invoking alternative values. Thus the lawyer’s control over both the legal and factual theory of the case, the low standard for logical relevance, the high standard (“substantially outweighed”) for exclusion of logically relevant evidence, and the pervasiveness of the nonopinion rule all suggest that the rules of evidence function more to structure than to exclude evidence. This is true, even within the “rationalist” tradition in the law of evidence, which generally understands the warrants that render a piece of evidence logically relevant to be purely empirical, and so value-free, empirical generalizations embedded in the judge’s common sense about what happens “generally and for the most part.” But there is more to relevance.
Most obviously, what constitutes “unfair prejudice, confusion of the issues, or misleading the jury,” possibly calling for the exclusion of logically relevant evidence, requires a normative judgment on which purely legal considerations offer little guidance, and to which appellate courts are especially deferential. In many different ways, normative considerations affect “pure” relevancy determinations, both by rule and by judicial practice. This occurs in a self-conscious and focused way and, more important, in a tacit and pervasive way.
Some of these “relevancy” rules embody deeply held views about the importance of limited government. For example, evidence law prohibits a lawyer’s presenting proof of a witness’s religious beliefs in order to show that he is more or less credible.
The nonopinion rule and the relevance rule are the two most important and most “generative” of the rules of evidence. They are “generative” in the sense that most of the other evidence rules can be derived from them. There are basically four other categories of evidentiary rules, which have limited theoretical interest because of their derivative nature, but I deem them worth mentioning to round out the picture. The so-called best evidence rule requires only that the originals of documents be offered if available. Therefore, evidence as diverse as documents, physical evidence, telephone calls, and scientific processes all must be authenticated, unless it belongs to a class of evidence where there is no serious reason to doubt that evidence “is what it purports to be.” Authentication is usually fairly undemanding, the available methods virtually without limit, and the standard for admissibility relatively low. Though it is possible that some potential evidence can be excluded because the requisite “foundation” as to authenticity is unavailable, such exclusions are relatively rare.
Competence is a residual category. It now excludes certain kinds of evidence because they are likely to be unreliable, such as the testimony of very young children and persons in psychotic states. The broad tendency of the law of evidence has been to eliminate total incompetencies to testify and permit, instead, forms of impeachment that allow the juror to weigh the troubling aspect of the witness’s testimony like any other “impeaching” fact. Competency rules also exclude certain kinds of evidence for “structural” reasons: the judge’s potential testimony in the case over which he presides and usually the trial lawyer’s testimony in the case he tries. Finally, there is the rule against hearsay, which excludes out-of-court statements offered for the truth of the matter asserted. There is a wonderful scholasticism surrounding the definition of hearsay that has its interests but is not germane to my purposes here. The most fundamental purpose of the hearsay rule is to protect cross-examination, “the greatest legal engine ever invented for the discovery of truth.” The notion is that only if the person whose perceptions are being reported is the same person who is reporting the perceptions can the cross-examiner properly explore (1) important weaknesses in perception, memory, and clarity of expression that may infect the testimony even of sincere witnesses, and (2) biases, interests, prejudice, and character failings that cast doubt on the witness’s credibility.
The broad drift of the law of evidence has been to admit more and more hearsay evidence, and for the constitutional jurisprudence surrounding the analogous Confrontation Clause to follow the lead of evidence law. There have always been dozens of defined exceptions to the hearsay rule. Many jurisdictions also now have “catch-all” exceptions for hearsay that simply seems “reliable.” Recall too that out-of-court statements are inadmissible only if offered for the truth of the matter asserted. This raises what we now know to be issues of multiple relevancies. Out of-court statements can be offered for purposes other than the truth of what was asserted, and, once admitted, are usually considered for all purposes. The deferential principles of relevancy law that allow those other purposes to be logically quite weak and the ability of advocates to tailor actual theories in order to render desirable evidence logically relevant together reduce the actual bite of the hearsay rule.
The best evidence rule, the requirement of authentication, most of the law of competence, and the hearsay rule all serve to ensure that evidence upon which a juror may decide a case is reliable. At a level below the rhetoric of judicial opinions, reliability is really a form of relevance. Evidence that is utterly unreliable is really irrelevant: it really does not render a fact that is of consequence to the litigation any more or less probable than it would be without the evidence.
Lawyers play the dominant role in the courtroom because they serve professionally as essential, expert advocates for those they represent. A word used since at least the thirteenth century, “advocate” refers to a “lawyer who pleads a case in a court of law on behalf of another”. In divorce trials, each of the litigants—plaintiff and defendant—are represented by one or more advocates. Preparing and pleading a case in the modern legal world is a time-consuming, complicated process requiring extensive knowledge of the law and the rules of the legal system. Parties generally have no hope of competently managing a case on their own (proceeding “pro se”). Trial cases are the bailiwick of lawyer-advocates.
The Model Rules require lawyers to provide “competent representation” to their clients in the areas of legal knowledge, skill, thoroughness, and preparation. Legal knowledge includes knowledge of federal and state rules of evidence and civil procedure, as well as precedents set by case law, in order “to advance and protect the integrity of the fact-finding process.” Mastering these laws not only helps lawyers and their clients but also reduces the possibility for embarrassment and legal complications such as mistrials, inadmissible evidence, lost appeals, or reversed verdicts.
Custody and Parental Involvement
Custody itself is probably the biggest factor determining the level of parental involvement among parents who do not live together, because of its long-run effects on the level of emotional effort, care, and connection. In some families, noncustodial parents visit frequently and consistently. This is especially true immediately after children are born to unmarried parents who are romantically involved. However, these relationships tend to either turn into cohabitation or marriage or break up within a year or two. When parents are divorced or were never married and are no longer romantically involved, fathers’ involvement with children is often minimal and sporadic. Among a significant minority of such families, paternal visitation tapers off to nothing or nearly nothing within a few years.
Noncustodial parents tend to disengage emotionally for several reasons, whether as a result of relationship atrophy (“out of sight out of mind”), emotional avoidance (“it’s just too painful to see my kids under these conditions”), or overreliance on the custodial parent (“she’ll take good care of the kids no matter what I do”). Custodial parents may want to avoid contact with their previous partners at all costs. Emotional disengagement may contribute to financial disengagement, or vice versa. In any case, the effects are cumulative: The more emotionally disengaged the noncustodial parent becomes, the less implicit bargaining power the custodial parent has to increase either payment or time inputs. If the noncustodial parent feels little connection to—and wants no contact with—the child, the custodial parent is less able to successfully use an appeal to the needs of the child or a threat to make visitation or contact more difficult as a bargaining strategy. Furthermore, the less emotionally engaged the noncustodial parent becomes, the less the custodial parent and child have to gain from personal contact with him (or her). Thus, disengagement of one type breeds further disengagement.
Most parents want to increase their children’s well-being. But the ways they want to do so are shaped not merely by their perceptions of children’s needs but also by their own preferences—how they weigh their children’s and fellow parent’s well-being relative to their own. A father may feel less need to be involved in direct parenting if a mother is already providing substantial effort, and vice versa. Both levels and forms of parental involvement are subject to negotiation and bargaining. For instance, one parent might want the other parent to spend more time or money or simply give more personal attention to a child. That parent might offer something in return, as in, “If you’ll put the children to bed, I’ll do the dishes. ”
Such negotiations are necessarily complex. Parental involvement is a not a simple “product” but a process that requires emotional effort as well as time and money. It imposes costs, but it also confers benefits. Therefore, we cannot assume that parents always want to minimize it or to maximize it—rather they probably seek some level of involvement that is determined both by their perceptions of what children need, their own preferences, and what they believe the other parent should and could provide. It is important to remember, however, that some circularity comes into play; for example, a parent’s bargaining power may affect how much the other parent is involved with the child, but that involvement may in turn affect the parents’ relative bargaining power.
Rules about custody and support interact in ways that illustrate the interplay of nonpecuniary and economic benefits. Child custody is psychologically important to parents, especially to primary caregivers whose involvement is time and care intensive. They may feel that custody is necessary in order to provide greater continuity for themselves or the child; furthermore, as primary caregivers, they may be more emotionally attached to the child. As we discussed, this means that most mothers cannot make a credible threat to stop taking care of the child within the marriage or in the event of divorce (to leave the child with the father); thus, their ability to use the fact that they are providing child care as a bargaining chip with the father is limited, and it is limited even more if the father’s empathy for the child is low because he has been less emotionally involved.
The intensification of child support enforcement efforts over the past few years has provoked tremendous controversy. Although success has been uneven, more divorced fathers are paying children support. This, together with the growing cultural stigmatization of “deadbeat dads” has almost certainly increased the bargaining power of mothers relative to fathers within marriage as well as among noncohabiting parents. Mothers’ external threat points are higher as a result. Men can withdraw some of their earnings by divorce, but the amount of withdrawal is reduced by the amount of child support mandated by the state. Not surprisingly, some men have responded to this trend by demanding greater consideration as potential custodians in the event of divorce. In most states today the presumption of legal custody is no longer gender specific, but rests instead on what the court deems best for the child. Relatively few fathers try to convince judges that they are the better custodial parent, and even fewer succeed. But the number of men who seek and get custody or joint physical custody is rising.
Thus, the legal environment has produced two changes in recent decades. Mothers’ confidence that they will get child support if they divorce has increased, but they can be less sure than before that they will get custody. What is the net effect of this change on bargaining power likely to be? One could argue that two changes cancel each other out in their effect on maternal bargaining power—that is, mothers gain a higher probability of effective child support enforcement at the cost of a higher risk of losing sole custody and so there is no effect on their bargaining power. It is hard to say.
Divorced noncustodial parents are required to pay child support (provided there is a court order for it), and custodial parents are required to allow visitation by the other father. Furthermore, states limit the ability of unmarried parents to bargain by setting separate and independent rules regarding custody, visitation, and support. Failure to pay child support, for instance, cannot generally be used as a reason to deny a noncustodial parent contact with a child. Nor can failure to enjoy visitation easily be used as a reason not to pay child support.
Cohabitation and Alimony
No laws in Utah require unmarried cohabitants to support each other. And no state including Utah awards alimony or other support payments when an unmarried couple separates. If, however, the cohabitants have entered a contract under which one agrees to support the other, the contract may be enforced (depending on the state in which the cohabitants live or the contract was established). Lawsuits brought to enforce these contracts have been popularly called palimony cases. But, since cohabitants seeking recovery under such an agreement are doing so on the basis of an express or implied contract and not on an alimony statute, the word palimony is actually inaccurate.
Traditionally, unless a couple has an express written agreement to the contrary, the law has left matters regarding the property owned by cohabitants if they end their relationship as they are. Thus, when a couple separates, the property goes to whoever has legal title to it. Usually, this has meant that the man gets the property, because in relationships in which the man is the wage earner and the woman the homemaker, the wage earner “owns” the property acquired through his wages. In addition, until recently, most state courts refused to enforce even express agreements between cohabitants as to support or ownership of property. These courts have followed two main lines of reasoning. First, they have based their refusal on the grounds that such agreements are invalid. because they are based on “illicit sexual services.” For any contract to be valid, it must be based on something of value, or what the law calls consideration. Consideration cannot be illegal. The typical consideration in business contracts is money, services, property, or goods. Traditionally, courts have ignored the fact that most contracts between cohabitants are based on similar types of consideration. They have assumed either that the only services exchanged are sexual services or that, because sexual services form even part of the agreement, they invalidate the entire agreement.
Divorce and Alimony
In some divorces, courts award alimony, also called spousal support or maintenance, to one party. Alimony is especially likely after a long marriage or if one spouse gave up career plans to support the other spouse or to care for the children.
Alimony is designed to help a lower-earning spouse make it through the divorce and the transition into a new single life. Depending on the length of the marriage and the degree to which one spouse was financially dependent on the other, support can be either temporary or last for many years. However, the nationwide trend is for courts to award spousal support in fewer and fewer situations, and for shorter times when they do award it, because it has become common for both spouses to work or at least be able to return to work. The court’s decision on whether one spouse is entitled to support from the other after the divorce is completed, begins with the question of need. There’s no hard and fast rule, but in general the longer the marriage, the stronger the presumption that support is appropriate.
Alimony falls into two broad categories: short-term support and long-term or permanent support. “Reimbursement” support is a kind of long-term support. A spouse may also get temporary support before the divorce is final. It’s possible that a former spouse might receive more than one kind of support at the same time. If a spouse is getting more than one kind of support, say rehabilitative and short-term, then when the spouse is employed again, the rehabilitative support would end. The short-term support would continue until its termination date.
Short-term support is ordered when the marriage itself was short. Short-term support lasts only a few years, and its precise ending date is set in the court order. Rehabilitative support, sometimes also called “bridge the gap” support, is a specific kind of short-term support, designed to help a dependent spouse get retrained and back into the workforce. It usually lasts until the recipient is back to work. Generally, that date isn’t set in advance—the agreement is that the support payments will stop when the recipient completes a retraining program and becomes employed. The recipient is responsible for diligently pursuing their training and then searching for work. The other spouse is responsible for paying the support until that point—and a payer who suspects the recipient isn’t really trying to complete an education or get work can ask the court to reduce the support amount or set a termination date. The person asking for the modification would have to prove that the other ex-spouse was not working hard enough.
Permanent support may be granted after long marriages, generally more than ten years, if the judge concludes that the dependent spouse isn’t likely to go back into the workforce and will need support indefinitely. Some states don’t allow permanent support. Permanent support does eventually end when either the recipient or the payor dies. It also may end when the recipient remarries. In about half the states, it ends if the recipient begins living with another person in a marriage-like relationship where the couple provides mutual support and shares financial responsibilities.
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Unless you and your spouse have mutually agreed on the terms of your divorce, your divorce battle can be a long drawn case. You will have to back up your claims with evidence and be prepared to testify in support of your case. If there are children from the divorce, the custody of the children will be decided by the courts unless you and your spouse have mutually agreed on the custody. The mother does not automatically get custody of the children. The court will consider many factors when deciding on who should get custody of the children in a contested divorce. Utah divorce law is complex. Attempting to navigate the complex maze of Utah divorce laws can be disastrous. Seek the assistance of an experienced South Salt Lake Utah divorce lawyer.
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Under Utah law, if the child is born during the marriage of the parents, paternity is automatically established. The legal father is the husband and the husband’s name will appear on the birth certificate of the child as the father’s name. However, under Utah law, a child will have no father if the child is born to an unmarried couple and paternity must be established for the father’s name to appear on the child’s birth certificate. To know how you can establish paternity of your child, speak to an experienced Utah paternity attorney.
When the law makes a presumption, the court assumes that the presumed fact is true until it is presented with evidence to the contrary. Legal presumptions are based upon inferences that the law makes. For instance, children are presumed to be their parents’ intestate heirs because the court infers that parents would want their children to have most of their property. If you are fighting a paternity case in Utah consult an experienced Utah paternity attorney.
The issue of paternity comes up in a divorce proceedings where the spouses are fighting on the issue of child support. Often the husband will claim that he is not the father of the child to avoid paying child support. In such cases, a paternity lawsuit can help determine the biological father of the child.
The law presumes that a man is the father of all children his wife conceives during their marriage. Sometimes a man will assume the paternity of a child born to his wife and “hold himself out” as the child’s father, even if he knows himself not to be the father or if his paternity is uncertain. If there is a subsequent divorce, he may raise the question of paternity for the first time in the divorce proceeding. In most cases, a man who assumes paternity (either by signing the birth certificate or giving the appearance to the community that he is the child’s father) cannot later deny that he is the child’s father. This is often true even if he learns for the first time during the divorce proceeding that he is not or may not be the father of the children.
In past years, an unmarried mother would often look to AFDC for support of her child(ren) without attempting to identify and pursue the child’s father for support. Today, however, all jurisdictions are obligated to assist single mothers in taking an active role in establishing paternity; they risk losing benefits if they refuse to participate. It is not unusual, for example, for a hospital with an active maternity ward to offer assistance with establishing paternity to an unmarried woman who does not identify the father of her child.
In recent years, an ever-increasing number of children have been born without a father who acknowledges his fatherhood. The number of out-of-wedlock births has skyrocketed, and there has also been a dramatic increase in the number of cases involving husbands or wives who claim that a child conceived within a marriage was fathered by another man. One of the many consequences of this is that such children do not obtain their legal right of the care and support of two parents.
In earlier years, when the social welfare system borne by the state and federal governments was not as overburdened as it is today. Attempts were made to establish paternity – i.e., to identify the father of the child – but few were successful. One of the major reasons for this was that the available biological tests were not very sophisticated. Their primary ability was to establish that a “putative” father – a man claiming or claimed to be the father – was not, in fact, the father. The method involved blood tests of the mother, father, and child. If the child had a blood type that could not have been inherited from that father, paternity was denied. If the child had the blood type of the mother or of neither parent, the test was unable to assist in establishing paternity.
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If you are considering starting a family through artificial reproductive techniques, speak to an experienced Herriman Utah family lawyer. The landmark case in Utah on the issue of paternity is the Kimberlee case. Kimberlee and Kelly Pearson were happily married until Kimberlee had an affair with Pete Thanos. As a result of the affair, Kimberlee conceived a child, Z.P. Instead of walking away, Kelly agreed to stay in the marriage and to parent the child. He named the child and signed his birth certificate. Pete had only limited contact with the child because Kelly assumed the role of the child’s father.
When the baby was about nine months old, the couple decided to walk away from the marriage, although Kelly did continue to act as a parent to Z.P. and N.P., his biological child with Kimberlee. With Kelly out of the picture, Pete spent time with Kimberlee and Z.P. Z.P. was fifteen months old when Kimberlee filed for divorce. Pete attempted to intervene in the matter, so that he could be adjudicated as Z.P.’s father. In light of Pete’s limited earlier contact with Z.P., the district court commissioner recommended that he not be permitted to intervene. The commissioner was concerned that allowing Pete to establish his paternity would interfere with the father-son relationship that existed between Kelly and Z.P. After a hearing, the district court adjudicated Pete as Z.P.’s father and awarded him joint legal custody with Kimberlee. Kelly was awarded visitation rights. The Utah Court of Appeals reversed the district court. The appellate court concluded that Pete did not have standing to contest Kelly’s presumption of paternity, so Kelly was still Z.P.’s legal father. Kelly’s paternity was established by his marriage to Kimberlee.
The Supreme Court of Utah affirmed the court of appeal’s decision. While the state supreme court acknowledged that it had permitted the marital presumption to be challenged in several cases, the court opined that the Pearsons’ situation was different because the couple was still married when the child was born. Moreover, Kimberlee had allowed Kelly to establish a parent-child relationship with Z.P. The extramarital affair and the pregnancy did not end the marriage. Before the baby was born, the couple decided to stay married and to let Kelly act as a father to the child. When the child was born, the couple’s commitment to their marriage did not waver. Thus, the marriage remained intact and entitled to be legally protected from a third party seeking to challenge the paternity of the woman’s husband. Since the marital relationship includes the man, the woman, and the child, it warrants protection even after one party files for divorce. Moreover, the court needed to bar a challenge to Kelly’s paternity in order to protect the relationship he had established with the child because that relationship survived the divorce. As a matter of fairness, a man who commits to parent an extramarital child should not have his paternity attacked after he has become attached to the child.
When the couple decided to end the marriage, there appeared to be no good reason to prevent a challenge to the husband’s paternity. Another man’s claim of paternity would not cause tension in the marriage because the marriage was already over. However, instead of just focusing on the marital relationship, the court emphasized the existence of an intact marital unit. That unit included the child. The court decided to expand the purpose of preserving intact marriages broadly to include preserving established parent-child relationships. In this case, the parent-child relationship survived the divorce because Kelly maintained a relationship with the child after the divorce. Thus, it was necessary to prevent Pete from rebutting Kelly’s paternity in order to preserve that relationship. Courts have also taken that approach to promote the best interests of the child.
Under this doctrine, a person will be permitted to challenge the husband’s paternity only if doing so will promote the best interests of the child. Currently, the main way to rebut the husband’s paternity is to present DNA evidence that the husband is not the child’s biological father. This DNA evidence may be obtained through blood tests of cheek swabs. DNA tests are inexpensive and accessible, so it is relatively easy to determine if the woman’s husband is not the child’s biological father. Nonetheless, courts have held that, if the presumption of paternity applies, blood test results do not matter until the presumption has been rebutted. In some cases, in order to protect the best interests of the child, courts have the authority to practice judicial ignorance. If the court decides the child will be hurt by the discovery that the woman’s husband is not the child’s biological father, the court has the power to refuse to order blood tests. Hence, the blood test evidence is deemed inadmissible even if blood tests have been conducted. In making that decision, the court will consider several factors including the relationship between the child and the woman’s husband, the availability of another male figure who is willing to assume the paternal role, and the child’s relationship with that man.
Non-marital child inheritance
Initially, the establishment of paternity that entitled the non-marital child to lifetime support did not extend to inheritance rights. In some circumstances, the obligation of paternal support ceased at the death of the nonmarital child’s legal father. This was the case even if the non-marital child was a minor and/or disabled. Inheritance was the last right that was denied to non-marital children. Finally, the U.S. Supreme Court had to step in and clarify the actions that states were required to take to ensure that non-marital children were not denied the equal protection of the law. The Supreme Court acknowledged that it was important for the state to reward people for getting married before having children. Nonetheless, the Court felt that the legislature could fulfill its objectives without enacting statutes that punished non-marital children for existing.
Children, including non-marital children, were unable to control their parents’ actions, so the law should not disadvantage them because of those parental actions. Further, the Court noted that non-marital children were powerless to force their parents to satisfy the conditions set forth in the statute. As a result, it would be unfair if non-marital children were unable to take steps to inherit from their fathers because their parents failed to marry and/or their fathers refused to acknowledge them.
The Supreme Court thought that it was important to give a man the right to present evidence showing that he was not the father of a non-marital child. The establishment of a father-child relationship places numerous legal obligations on a man. As a result, the man should be afforded the opportunity to challenge false claims of paternity.
Since the legal status of non-marital children is different from that of marital children, their rights with regard to inheritance may be different as long as they are given an opportunity to inherit from their fathers.
Children of Passion
When courts adjudicate paternity in cases dealing with children of passion, they focus upon the needs of the children instead of the actions of the men. A fornicating man runs the risk of conceiving a child when he uses sexual intercourse to donate his sperm to a woman who is not his wife because no form of birth control is one hundred percent effective when it comes to preventing pregnancy. Therefore, the man who chooses not to remain celibate should have to live with the consequences of his actions. One of those consequences is being financially responsible for his biological children who are conceived by nature. The sperm donor who conceives using scientific methods does not have to deal with that consequence.
Children of passion may be created without discussion or conversation. Hormones go wild, and overactive libidos turn adults into teenagers. The end result is the unplanned conception of children. The women who choose not to exercise the abortion or adoption option no longer have to bear the financial burden of raising their children alone. A married woman can usually rely on her husband for financial support even if the child resembles the mailman or the pool boy. If the woman is unmarried, the father is on the hook for at least eighteen years of child support. These men have the right to walk away from the women and the children, but they might as well leave their checkbooks behind because the children need food, clothing, and shelter. Courts are going to take steps to make sure that the men involved in the situations help to provide those necessities. Ironically, children of science are not treated with the same care. Children of science are often conceived after much discussion and planning. Unlike the women who give birth to children of passion, the mothers of children of science must make arrangements to ensure that they have legal fathers before those children are even conceived. If the women fail to take the necessary steps, they are solely responsible for financially supporting the children of science.
To start the reproductive process, the semen or sperm of a male donor is the prerequisite. In truth, the male progenitor is not “donating” his semen or sperm for he is generally paid by the attending physician or by the sperm bank or by the parties themselves seeking artificial conception. It is the physician who generally selects the donor and maintains the secrecy of the donor’s identity.
Donor insemination is also sought by unmarried women without male partners; they frequently plan to rear offspring alone or in a same-sex family. The legal rights of the donor of semen or sperm have generally not included any relationship with the conceived child (unless the donor is the husband of the woman whose egg was so fertilized). The male donor might well enter into a contract with the married couple, allowing him to have some rearing rights and duties in the offspring. Such agreements have been recognized where the recipient of the sperm is unmarried, perhaps to ensure a male-rearing parent for the offspring. Where the recipient of the sperm is married, such a rearing right would seriously interfere with normal family upbringing.
In the creation of the new family by artificial conception and in accord with modern genetics, there is ever present the issue of legal liability upon the various participants in the new reproductive process.
In this remarkable drama of new reproductive technologies, the dramatis personae, or list of characters, is ever growing as the mystery of the brave new world unfolds. It is already possible for a child to have five different “parents”: (1) the woman who donated the egg; (2) the man who donated the sperm; (3) the woman to whose uterus the fertilized embryo is transferred so that she can carry it to birth; and (4) and (5) the man and woman who will receive and presumably raise the child. In addition to these five persons, there are the adoptive parents; the equitable or foster parents, and the attending physician, along with other personnel, including a sperm bank that participated in the fertilization. To complicate the process are the twin concepts of secrecy and anonymity, which permeate the entire process.
It should be noted that section 5 of the Uniform Parentage Act exempts the donor from any legal relationship to the child of a married woman. The donor of the semen or sperm is absolved from any legal rights or obligations with respect to the child conceived. The Uniform Parentage Act was promulgated in 1973 to establish the rights of illegitimate and legitimate children on equal terms and also to identify the person against whom these rights may be asserted. The act defines the parent- child relationship in terms of a relationship that disregards the parents’ marital status, although it provides for rebuttable presumptions of parentage. The act sets forth the procedures for bringing a parentage suit under sections 6-24. Under section 5 of the act, the husband “is treated in law as if he were the natural father of a child conceived” if the husband and wife had consented in writing to have the wife artificially inseminated by a donor and if the insemination is performed by a licensed physician. This consent form must be filed with the State Department of Health and kept in a sealed file. The sperm donor who donates for a married woman other than his wife is deemed not to be the natural father of the child so conceived. Utah has its own version of this Act.
If you are involved in paternity litigation, consult with an experienced Herriman Utah Family Lawyer.
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Oftentimes, reckless driving involves instances of observably treacherous driving such as street racing, weaving through traffic, or driving at high speeds in areas where there are pedestrians. But in the DUI context, the driver’s intoxication alone might be enough to qualify as reckless driving. In other words, even if an intoxicated motorist’s driving pattern is normal, the act of operating a vehicle while under the influence of drugs or alcohol can be considered inherently dangerous to other people and property. Some states even have a brand of reckless driving that’s specific to offenses involving drugs or alcohol.
These drug and alcohol related offenses typically come with consequences in addition to those imposed for standard reckless driving. For instance, some states require substance abuse treatment for reckless driving convictions that involved drugs or alcohol. When a driver has been charged with driving under the influence, a DUI attorney will determine if, due to the circumstances and evidence in your case, the charge can be reduced or dropped altogether. One option that any skilled attorney will look into is getting the DUI charge reduced to a reckless driving charge. Though reckless driving is a serious offense that will result in penalties, the degree of punishment is far less severe than those imposed on a person convicted of a DUI. However, some states use other terms for the offense, like driving to endanger and reckless operation. Generally, you can be convicted of reckless driving for purposefully or knowingly operating a vehicle in a manner that poses a substantial danger to other people or property. The type and severity of DUI and reckless driving penalties vary greatly by state. To learn more about the minimum and maximum DUI and reckless driving punishments in a specific state, consult an attorney who is licensed to practice in that state.
• Jail Time: Both reckless driving and DUI charges can result in jail time. However, the amount of jail time that must be served is usually far less for reckless driving offenses. In most cases, a reckless driving offense may carry a sentence of no jail time to a few days of jail time, while a DUI charge could result in up to a year in jail. In addition, drivers arrested for a DUI typically must spend at least a few hours in jail after the arrest, while drivers charged with reckless driving may simply be ticketed and allowed to drive home.
• Fines: Those convicted of reckless driving will pay lower fines and court fees than drivers convicted of a DUI.
• Your Record: In many states, a reckless driving charge is a lesser offense than a DUI. For example, in Utah, a DUI is a first-degree misdemeanor, while a reckless driving charge is a second-degree misdemeanor. It is important to note that in certain cases, such as when driving under the influence or reckless driving results in bodily injury, the charges could be upgraded to a felony offense.
• Impounded Car: In most states, authorities impound the vehicle when drivers are arrested for drunk driving. The car may be impounded for several days, and the owner of the vehicle must pay the impound fee in order to get the car back. Some states may also impound the car when a driver is ticketed for reckless driving; however, this usually only happens when the driver is charged with another offense.
• Revocation of the License: DUI punishments often involve the suspension or restriction of the driver’s license. The license may be restricted or revoked in reckless driving cases, but this typically only happens when the driver committed other offenses.
Additional Drunk Driving Penalties
In addition to the penalties mentioned above, those convicted of a DUI may also be sentenced to:
• Alcohol or Drug Education Classes: Drivers convicted of DUI are often required to attend a minimum number of drug or alcohol courses within a set time period.
• Ignition Interlock Device: An ignition interlock device analyzes the alcohol content of a driver’s breath before he or she can start the motor. When an ignition interlock device is installed, the driver is required to blow into the device every time they want to start the car. If the breath-alcohol content is too high, the car won’t start.
• Probation: When a person is convicted of a DUI, they may be placed under probation for a pre-determined amount of time.
Most DUI cases are resolved through plea bargaining. In other words, the defendant agrees to plead guilty or no contest to a criminal charge in exchange for some form of leniency from the prosecution. For instance, a DUI plea bargain might involve a defendant pleading guilty to a DUI charge in exchange for the prosecution agreeing to fines and jail time that are below the allowable maximums. In other cases, a plea bargain might involve the prosecution dismissing the DUI charge and the defendant entering a plea to a less serious charge.
When such a plea deal is for a reckless driving charge, it’s sometimes called a wet reckless. Plea bargaining rules differ by state. But the majority of states allow some plea bargaining in DUI cases. So, while prosecutors are often reluctant to reduce a DUI to a reckless driving charge, it’s at least a possibility in most states. There are, however, a few states that prohibit plea bargaining altogether in cases where DUI charges are filed. Of course, for defendants in these states, a wet reckless plea deal isn’t normally an option. Generally, prosecutors are willing to offer a wet reckless only in cases with either significant mitigating factors or weaknesses in the evidence. Mitigating factors might include things like:
• it being the person’s first DUI
• the person having no criminal record, and
• a low blood alcohol concentration (BAC).
The presence of aggravating factors, on the other hand, ordinarily diminishes your chances of getting a wet reckless plea deal. For example, prosecutors are typically unwilling to reduce DUI charges in cases involving accident and injuries. When there are evidentiary problems, prosecutors start to worry about whether they’ll be able to prove the charges in court. Rather than risk losing at trial, a prosecutor might offer a defendant a favorable plea deal, like a wet reckless. Evidentiary problems come in lots of varieties. But oftentimes, these issues relate to uncertainty about being able to prove the defendant’s BAC. (An understanding of common DUI defenses can give you an idea of when a defendant might have better bargaining power.)
Benefits of a Reckless
Generally, reckless driving carries less severe penalties than a DUI charge. So, a wet reckless plea deal typically means lower fines and less potential jail time than would result from being convicted of a DUI. A wet reckless plea can also have advantages with regard to license related consequences. Many states allow judges to suspend a motorist’s license for reckless driving. But for DUI convictions, license suspension is typically mandatory for six months to a year. And a DUI conviction will generally add more traffic violation demerit points to person’s driving record than will a reckless driving violation. Wet reckless convictions and DUI convictions carry different penalties, but a wet reckless conviction can count as a prior DUI. In some states, someone who has a wet reckless conviction and then is convicted of DUI will be sentenced as a repeat DUI offender Another common way cases are reduced is by attacking the field sobriety exercises that a person is asked to perform on the side of the road. Many times a person does well on these tests, and passes them, but is still arrested for DUI.
In these situations it is important that the attorney looks at the video and highlights how well his client performed to the prosecutor. When realizing that the person performed well on these tests, thereby showing that they were not impaired, rather than going to trial the state agrees to reduce the charge to a reckless driving. These tests are very difficult considering the circumstances you are asked to do them under, and almost impossible to pass for the average person. Therefore, when someone looks good when doing these tests on video, it is very tough for the state to prove that the person was DUI. Since the state has the burden of proof they often reduce the charge to avoid a not guilty verdict in front of a jury.
Obtaining this reduced charge will mean that standard DUI conviction penalties will not occur, such as the automatic mandatory suspension of your license for a year, DUI fines, and a more serious black mark on your driving record. In some cases, it may mean that the installation and use of an ignition interlock device will not be required. You will, however, face the consequences of a reckless driving charge which may carry a maximum license suspension of six months, a possible fine of up to $300, suspended jail time, and completion of a Virginia Alcohol Safety Action Program. The prosecutor will often review the DUI file to decide whether to reduce the charge to reckless driving. The main factor considered by the prosecutor is whether a guilty verdict can be obtained at trial. The more concerned the prosecutor is about a not guilty verdict, the more likely the prosecutor is to reduce the charge. Other factors include:
• The officer noted in the report that the driver was polite and cooperative during the DUI investigation
• Concerns about the Breath Test Reading
• Concerns about the legality of the stop, arrest or detention:
• A question about whether the stop was legal
• A question about whether the stop was unreasonably prolonged
• A question about whether the officer had cause to request field sobriety exercises or probable cause to make the DUI arrest
• Concerns about the Refusal to Submit to Testing
• Reasons for a refusal other than “consciousness of guilt”
• Problems with the reading of implied consent
• Concerns about the defendant’s willingness to go to trial
The real reduction occurs because of the lack of other consequences of a reckless driving plea when compared to a DUI conviction. For instance, if you enter a plea to reckless driving the court can withhold adjudication which allows you to seal the criminal record as soon as probation is completed (assuming that you are otherwise eligible to seal a criminal record). Additionally, no driver’s license suspension is required.
Likewise, in a reckless driving plea under Utah law, the court is not required to impose DUI School, community service hours, a fine, or any of the other requirements that are mandated in a DUI case under law. The criminal offense of reckless driving is often difficult to prove under law, although it can be very valuable in resolving a DUI case so that the client can avoid a DUI conviction. When the prosecutor agrees to reduce a charge of DUI down to reckless driving, it is usually done by designating the reckless driving as an alcohol-related offense. Entering a plea to the reduced charge of alcohol-related reckless driving after an arrest for DUI is not necessarily in a person’s best interest. In certain cases it may be more advantageous to fight the criminal charges for a reduction to a non-alcohol related offense, an outright dismissal, or a non-guilty verdict at trial.
Many people arrested for DUI are interested in information on alcohol-related reckless driving pleas. With a plea to alcohol related reckless driving the mandatory fines and jail time under DUI sentencing do not apply. However, the Drivers License Division is still notified and an Alcohol Related Reckless Driving conviction is treated the same as a DUI conviction in subsequent convictions for DUI. In other words, if you have a prior Alcohol Related Reckless Driving, and then you commit the crime of DUI, the Alcohol Related Reckless Driving counts as a prior conviction and you are now subject to the increased mandatory jail and fines.
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The federal government and the State of Utah have enacted statutes that regulate the possession, carrying, use, sale, manufacturing, importing and exporting of deadly weapons. Deadly weapons are typically defined as instruments that can be used or are intended to be used to cause death or serious bodily injury. Deadly weapons may include firearms, knives and explosives. Although the Second Amendment to the United States Constitution provides a right to bear arms, the government may, in certain instances, reasonably regulate the possession or use of firearms. Such regulations are usually designed to protect the health, welfare and safety of citizens who might be harmed by the uncontrolled possession and use of deadly weapons.
Unlawful possession of a weapon may also enhance the charge and penalty if the defendant possesses or uses a weapon during the commission of another offense. For instance, if a defendant commits a sexual assault and uses (or in some cases merely possesses) a deadly weapon while carrying out the offense, then the defendant may be charged with the sexual assault and the weapons offense. The addition of the weapons offense increases the punishment imposed on the defendant and is intended to deter individuals from committing crimes while using or possessing deadly weapons.
For a defendant, the criminal process usually begins at the time of arrest. An arrest indicates that the police have probable cause to believe that the person being arrested has committed a crime. Probable cause means that the police officer believes there is a “fair probability” that the suspect has engaged in criminal activity. Thus, the officer doesn’t have to be certain that the suspect committed a crime in order to make an arrest. Probable cause may be developed by relying upon witness reports or observations of criminal activity or by conducting extensive police investigations into suspected illegal conduct.
Once arrested, the suspect is advised of his constitutional rights. These rights include the right to remain silent, the right to have an attorney present during questioning and the right to have an attorney appointed if the suspect is unable to afford one. The suspect is then booked, fingerprinted and photographed. As soon as possible after the arrest, the suspect is taken before a judge or magistrate and advised of the charges against him. At this time, the judge or magistrate may also make a determination concerning the pretrial release of the suspect. Depending upon the nature of the crime and the risk of flight, the suspect may either be detained without bail, detained pending the posting of a specific bail amount or released on his own recognizance, which means that the suspect simply promises to return to court for further proceedings in the case.
Indictment And The Grand Jury Process
In some cases, prior to an arrest, a grand jury will be convened to investigate suspected criminal activity. The grand jury is composed of a group of lay citizens who are charged with the responsibility for gathering information and determining whether probable cause exists to issue an indictment or formal charge against anyone. The grand jury has significant investigatory power and can subpoena witnesses and documents on a fairly broad scale as it carries out its functions. Subpoenaed witnesses must appear before the grand jury and bring any subpoenaed documents with them. Additionally, witnesses are not permitted to bring counsel into the grand jury room, although they may leave the room to consult with counsel on specific questions. Failure to comply with a grand jury subpoena may result in sanctions for contempt, which could include a period of incarceration until the witness agrees to comply with the grand jury request. These types of grand jury investigations often result in the issuance of an indictment, which then requires the police to formally arrest the person(s) named in the indictment. Grand jury investigations of this nature are particularly useful for investigating large-scale criminal activity that is often associated with white- collar crime (e.g., securities fraud, tax fraud). Again, because the grand jury has broad subpoena power and can demand testimony and documents, it can use relatively unrestricted investigative techniques that are, for the most part, constitutionally unavailable to law enforcement officers.
The grand jury process may also be used after the arrest of a suspect in some cases. Typically, these grand jury proceedings are initiated and led by the prosecutor who believes that a crime has been committed and presents the government’s evidence against a specific suspect to the grand jury. Because the government’s evidence is presented unchallenged, in all but the weakest cases, the grand jury finds probable cause to issue an indictment against the suspect.
Grand jury proceedings and the identities of the grand jurors are guarded with the utmost secrecy. The secrecy is intended to protect the grand jury in its fact-finding process by ensuring that grand jurors are free from external influences that might affect the impartiality of the decision-making process.
In some cases, in lieu of the grand jury indictment process, the prosecutor may file an information with the court. The information, which is used primarily in less serious cases, is a formal written statement of the charges against the defendant and serves the same purpose as a grand jury indictment. It is important to understand that neither the issuance of an indictment nor the filing of an information means that the defendant is guilty of the crime. These are merely formal statements of the charges that must be proven at trial.
Arraignment And Pretrial Motions
Once the indictment or information has been issued or filed, the defendant is brought before the court to be formally charged with the crime. This proceeding is called the arraignment. During the arraignment, the charges are read in detail to the defendant, who is asked to formally enter a plea to the charges. At the arraignment, the court will also insure that the defendant is represented by counsel and may hear arguments for and against setting or reducing bail for the defendant’s release pending trial.
If the defendant pleads guilty at the arraignment, the court will carefully question the defendant to determine whether the guilty plea is being made knowingly and voluntarily. The court is essentially seeking to ensure that no one has improperly coerced the defendant to enter a guilty plea. The court will also instruct the defendant that by pleading guilty, he or she is waiving the right to a trial and choosing to proceed immediately to the penalty phase of the criminal process. If the court is satisfied that the defendant is voluntarily entering a plea of guilty, a date will be set for sentencing. Defendants who do not choose to plead guilty at the arraignment will have their cases scheduled for trial during the arraignment proceeding.
Once a case is scheduled for trial, both the prosecution and defense begin to plan their strategies. The defense strategy may include challenging the government’s collection of evidence against the defendant on constitutional grounds. To carry out this strategy, the defendant may file motions to suppress evidence, arguing that the evidence was seized in violation of the Fourth Amendment or that incriminating statements were obtained in violation of the Fifth or Sixth Amendment. Depending upon the outcome of these motions to suppress and the nature of the evidence suppressed, the government’s case may not be able to proceed and the case against the defendant may have to be dismissed. For example, if a defendant is charged with narcotics trafficking and the narcotics evidence is successfully suppressed because of an unlawful search of the defendant’s home, the government will not be able to proceed with the case because a crucial and necessary piece of evidence will be excluded from the case.
During the pretrial process, the government and defense have certain obligations with respect to sharing evidence. For example, the government is obligated to share information that tends to show that the defendant might not have committed the crime. Additionally, both sides must give notice of potential witnesses and experts to be called during the trial, and the defendant must provide notice as to whether certain defenses, such as the insanity defense, will be presented during the trial. This pretrial exchange of information is intended to allow both sides to fairly and adequately prepare and present their cases and avoid the disruption and surprise associated with “trial by ambush.”
Trier of Fact: Judge or Jury
The defendant may elect to have his case tried before a judge or a jury. If he chooses to have it tried only by a judge, then the judge hears all of the factual evidence, makes evidentiary rulings during the trial and renders a verdict at the conclusion of the case. If, however, the defendant chooses to have the case tried before a jury, then the jury selection process is the first phase of the criminal trial.
In Utah, potential jurors are selected from voter and license registration lists. From this broad pool, both the defense and prosecution attempt to identify jurors who can listen to the evidence in an unbiased fashion and render a verdict based solely upon the evidence submitted at trial. The process of questioning and selecting jurors is called voir dire. During this process, the defense, the prosecution and occasionally the judge will ask questions of potential jurors in an attempt to expose any biases or preconceived notions that might interfere with their ability to render a fair and impartial verdict. During the voir dire, each side (the defense and prosecution) may request that prospective jurors be excused from the case either for cause (e.g., bias) or, in limited instances, for no reason at all. Requesting that a juror be excused without providing a reason is known as exercising a peremptory challenge. Each side has a limited number of peremptory challenges and may use them to excuse jurors for practically any reason except race and gender.
Once the jurors have been selected, the trial begins with opening statements by the government prosecutor. The defendant comes into the trial with a presumption of innocence, and the government has the burden of proving each of the material elements of the crime beyond a reasonable doubt. During opening statements, the prosecutor usually begins by explaining the government’s theory of the case to the jury. The prosecutor will articulate how the government’s evidence will establish that a crime was committed and that the defendant is the perpetrator of the crime. After the government’s opening statement, the defense presents its opening statement and theory of the case. This is the first opportunity for the defendant to refute the government’s theory of the case and set the stage for alibi or other types of defenses (e.g., self-defense, insanity). During the opening statements, no evidence is introduced, and each side explains its theory of the case in a narrative fashion.
Presentation of Evidence
After the opening statements, the presentation of evidence begins with the government’s case-in-chief. Since the government carries the burden of proof, the prosecutor will begin by introducing evidence on each of the material elements of the offense in an attempt to establish the defendant’s guilt beyond a reasonable doubt. The evidence presented is usually testimonial in nature and is introduced by calling witnesses to the stand. Evidence might also consist of documents, which will be introduced into evidence through witness testimony that verifies the authenticity and accuracy of the documents. Since most crimes are committed in secret with very few direct eyewitnesses, in most cases, the government must build its case piece by piece using circumstantial rather than direct evidence.
Utah criminal law process is complex. If you have been charged with a crime in Utah, contact an experienced Midway Utah criminal defense lawyer.
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Organizations set up workplace abuse and harassment approaches to avoid improper conduct and set rules and systems to stop the conduct in the event that it happens. Harassment winds up unlawful when it makes a workplace that a sensible worker would not endure. Equivalent open door laws, for example, the Civil Rights Act, Americans with Disabilities Act and the Age Discrimination Act deny harassment, abuse and segregation in the workplace. These law are the establishment of most workplace abuse and harassment strategies. Abuse and harassment approaches are set up to teach representatives about injurious and improper conduct. These strategies characterize what is viewed as workplace harassment, restricted direct and the particular kinds of conduct that damage the approaches. They likewise diagram the ramifications for taking part in bugging and injurious exercises just as protest techniques. Abuse and harassment arrangements apply to administrators and chiefs, representatives, associates and nonemployees.
A few kinds of practices exist that establish abuse and harassment in the workplace. Business strategies deny harassment of a sexual sort, for example, undesirable lewd gestures, physical lead of a sexual sort and demands for sexual favors. Undesirable verbal, composed or physical abuse that shows threatening vibe dependent on an individual’s race, sex, sexual direction or handicap status is additionally viewed as harassment. Injurious conduct makes a threatening workplace for the person in question. Harsh conduct incorporates yet isn’t constrained to threatening physical lead, scaring repugnance towards others and unwelcome remarks that make a hostile workplace. Notwithstanding having abuse and harassment approaches set up, managers might be at risk for the wrong practices of specialists. Bosses are at risk for harassment when a director or chief’s wrong conduct results in an antagonistic business activity, for example, a reduction in wages or end. Managers who neglect to anticipate or if nothing else make an endeavor to avoid badgering conduct are additionally at risk. Bosses who are made mindful of pestering or oppressive conduct and find a way to address the circumstance are normally discharged from obligation except if the unfortunate casualty can demonstrate something else. Broken work climates aren’t made haphazardly. While there are numerous factors that can point to workplace abuse the following fixings are among those that make a rearing ground for abuse:
• Unreasonable execution desires – Many organizations take the “accomplish more with less” challenge to a crazy dimension. “The weight is on the laborers to perform, work extended periods of time or wind up in the place that is known for the jobless. In the mission to be key, the respect and privileges of others are surrendered,” Marias-Steinman recommends.
• Barbarous individuals – Mean individuals can harm the general air. “Let’s be honest, a few people accept the best way to lift themselves up is on the backs of others,” clarifies Bob Rosner, creator of Working Wounded: Advice That Adds Insight to Injury.
• Rivalry – Organizational correspondence educator Bill Gordon says, “People, similar to creatures, battle for survival and region. They are both benevolent and looking for individual bit of leeway.” Competition is regularly cultivated by execution evaluation and rating frameworks that make self-centeredness and envy.
• Uncertain resentment – Jones recommends that as a culture, we complete a poor occupation of mingling our kids; we instruct them that being great at home/school will prompt a decent life at work. Afterward, they find this isn’t generally the situation and turned out to be baffled and irate. This indignation in the long run emits “for the most part within the sight of an individual regarded to be inferior.’ If the objective does nothing to challenge the abuse, a standard has quite recently been set up in that relationship,” Jones offers.
• Poor Management – “Enterprises make harsh situations through low good gauges, absence of invigorating assignments, deficient preparing, and fail to give open correspondence,” Marias-Steinman clarifies.
As a business or manager, you’re in charge of guarding laborers. This incorporates anticipating viciousness in the workplace. As indicated by the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA), roughly 2 million American specialists are casualties of some kind of workplace viciousness every year. With couple of exemptions, representatives long for a sort, family air at work. It doesn’t take a brain research degree to make sense of that this condition not just draws out the best in representatives yet additionally keeps them cheerfully ready longer. “Regardless of whether the association takes care of workplace abuse or not, the representatives will accomplish something. They counter by decreasing the measure of work they do, sassing their bosses to other people and stopping,” says Kevin Schmidt, leader of Envision works, a Chicago-put together counseling organization that concentrations with respect to recognizing and diminishing workplace incivility. “What they are not doing is educating the business regarding the circumstance.” Envision works has built up an instrument to gauge the dimension of terrible conduct present inside an association called the Organizational Civility Index (OCI). The OCI enables workers to make their association mindful of potential issues and gives the business a helpful method to address the circumstance.
• The executives time and costs
• Profitability misfortune
• Staff substitution because of turnover
Subsequently, bosses have a significant job in forestalling workplace brutality. There are a wide range of procedures bosses can use to avoid savagery, including the ones beneath arranged from the FBI, SHRM and Business Management Daily. Here are some Systems/Prevention Tips:
• Receive a formal workplace brutality anticipation approach and program, and convey it to representatives.
• Have directors play a functioning job in representative consciousness of the arrangement; ensure they are aware of caution indications of workplace brutality and ability to react.
• Give normal workplace savagery and tormenting counteractive action preparing for all representatives (both new and current), chiefs and supervisors. Incorporate workplace savagery preparing recordings that can be referenced if circumstances emerge.
• Cultivate an atmosphere of trust and regard among specialists and among representatives and the board; annihilate a terrible culture of tormenting or harassment.
• Pay special mind to and find a way to decrease pessimism and worry in the workplace, which can hasten hazardous conduct.
• Recognize and screen out possibly vicious people before contracting while at the same time keeping up consistence with security insurances and hostile to segregation laws.
• Set up techniques and roads for representatives to report dangers, other savagery or if there’s impending peril.
• Begin an intercession program to determine worker questions instead of giving them a chance to stew.
• Report any dangers and your reaction to them including firing representatives who make a risk.
• Fire representatives with consideration and alert by including observers or security for vicious workers.
• Assess security frameworks routinely including cautions, ID keys, passwords, camera, and work force.
• Ensure workers know not to hold open secure access entryways for other people, who don’t have qualifications.
• Guarantee workers with limiting or defensive requests against an individual give that individual’s data and photograph to security.
Instruct representatives on what to do on the off chance that they witness or are casualties of workplace viciousness, just as how they can best secure themselves. Keep the workplace secure by introducing video reconnaissance, caution frameworks and additional lighting. Limit untouchables’ entrance by utilizing ID identifications, electronic keys and even security watches. Guarantee field laborers approach cellphones and handheld cautions to use in a crisis, and expect them to check in for the duration of the day. Tell laborers they ought to never enter an area in the event that they feel dangerous, and urge them to utilize the pal framework during the evening when strolling to their vehicles. OSHA suggests specialists:
• Go to wellbeing preparing programs, which can help with perceiving a circumstance.
• Tell a chief you have worries about the wellbeing or security of your workplace, and report any occurrences recorded as a hard copy.
• Cease from voyaging alone into new circumstances or areas.
• Help other people comprehend what harassing resembles among grown-ups. Tormenting in the workplace is not the same as the play area pushes and verbally abusing saw in youngsters. Commit a part of time in a workforce conference to discuss suitable and unseemly conduct and help your group distinguish issue circumstances.
• Build up a zero-resistance strategy. Pay attention to allegations of harassing, and make it unmistakable to partners that such conduct, regardless of whether from a friend or a customer, won’t go on without serious consequences.
• Train staff individuals on proper approaches to deal with struggle and analysis. Show compromise abilities through formal instructional courses. Work with your staff to comprehend when negative criticism is proper and how to give it with deference. Go up against unseemly conduct rapidly and secretly.
• Assemble self-assurance and limit in workers. Equipped and self-assured people are more averse to be harassed and bound to request help when required. Put resources into workforce improvement to fortify ranges of abilities and make every worker’s ability for commitment apparent.
• Ensure you’re not the domineering jerk. Many study respondents report being tormented by their supervisor or someone else with status in the association. Survey your very own activities and consider if your conduct may go too far to harassing. Solicit the direction from a confided in partner, and look for assistance if necessary.
More often than not, a workplace menace won’t carry on before an unrivaled. This can make it difficult for pioneers to distinguish tormenting conduct. A standout amongst the most ideal approaches to locate a domineering jerk is to make it simple for representatives to report damaging conduct, particularly namelessly. Put out a bolted “recommendation box,” and urge everybody to present their considerations and thoughts all the time. This can be a simple and circumspect approach to report harassing. You can likewise actualize a 360-degree execution audit strategy. This audit procedure enables individuals to survey their supervisors and friends namelessly, and it tends to be a significant apparatus for revealing awful conduct.
Lawyer for Workplace Policies And Procedures To Prevent Abuse
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After buying the property, the purchaser needs to comply with all applicable governmental regulations related to construction, occupancy, and ownership of property. These laws are almost exclusively state or local laws, although some federal environmental requirements may be applicable. The most common state and local requirements are for housing business licenses, rent control, building permits, and certificates of occupancy. The certificate of occupancy is issued at the other end of the project, when the construction is completed and the property is ready for occupancy. Again, the local government usually issues the certificate of occupancy. The certificate indicates that the local government has inspected the work and is satisfied that all requirements and conditions of the issuance of the building permit have been met and the property complies with all applicable housing and building codes. An experienced Salt Lake City Utah real estate lawyer plays an important role even during the construction of the project.
Settlement on the construction loan may take place simultaneously with the owner’s acquisition of the property, if the owner is prepared to begin construction immediately. Settlement on the construction loan will otherwise be delayed until the owner completes all the necessary construction documents, selects a general contractor, and secures all necessary work permits. An experienced Salt Lake City Utah real estate lawyer can assist you with the necessary construction documents.
An experienced Salt Lake City Utah real estate lawyer can you with the contract you need to sign with the general contractor to construct the building. The contractor must review the agreement between the owner and the contractor (often referred to as the Owner-Contractor Agreement), the conditions of the agreement or contract, the drawings, the specifications, and all other documents related to the project which have been specifically incorporated into the contract documents. These would normally include all addenda issued prior to and after the execution of the contract, and any modifications such as change orders, amendments, and orders for minor changes to the work.
The contractor has to review these documents and to point out to the owner any errors, omissions, or inconsistencies that may exist. This due diligence on the part of the contractor is often known as the “duty to inquire.” In practice, however, this concept is not as clear as it sounds. The contractor normally reviews the contract documents for the first time during the bidding process. This may be for a period of only a few days or weeks. The documents themselves may have taken the architect and the owner months to prepare. From the contractor’s viewpoint, the owner and architect will have had sufficient opportunity and time to resolve any errors prior to submitting them for bids. To the extent that errors or inconsistencies exist, some contractors view them as a source of future cost increases through change orders. For others, this is an opportunity to assist the project by adding the contractor’s expertise and experience.
For example, assume that, in a renovation of an old building, the property lines are reflected on a tax map, which is incorporated into the plans as part of the contract documents. The contractor has the right to assume that these property lines are accurate and warranted by the owner and architect. Assume, however, that the contractor recently completed work on a similar building nearby and that the contractor knows that the building actually extends beyond the tax lot indicated on the map. The contractor may rely on the architect and owner’s warranty of accuracy, but the best approach for the project would be for the contractor to come forward with his or her recent experience to inform the owner of the potential problems with the site and the potential project delays that could result while the conflict is being resolved. If the contractor raises the issue early, the cost to the project likely will be minimized; if the contractor raises the issue after construction has begun, the cost to the project and the additional fees paid to the contractor likely will be substantial.
The contractor is normally selected for a project based on the contractor’s ability to construct the building within a certain time period and for a specified price. The contractor is solely responsible for all construction procedures and methods required to complete the job and for the supervision of all personnel, including subcontractors and specialty trades hired by the contractor. There is a tendency for some owners to get personally involved in the construction process, especially if the project is small or seemingly simple to build. This tendency is problematic for two reasons:
• It dilutes and confuses the liability and responsibility for construction means and methods which, by standard contract, lie solely with the contractor.
• Comments, recommendations, and changes suggested by the owner may carry the weight of amendments or change orders to the scope of work when carried out by a “hungry” contractor or one who aggressively seeks additional fees through change orders. The owner could then face an increase in project costs, rather than the savings that were anticipated as a result of the owner’s personal involvement.
Labor and Materials.
The contractor’s responsibility for all personnel hired for the project includes paying the labor, coordinating the various trades, and providing the necessary tools and equipment for the job.
The contractor must guarantee the materials used on the job and the labor of the contractor’s employees. This warranty is in addition to any applicable manufacturer’s warranties provided on appliances, heating/ventilating and air-conditioning (HVAC) equipment, or roofing. Owners should articulate in their contract agreements with the contractor that all warranties relating to materials and labor should be assigned to them and should further stipulate that all installation work is to be performed in a manner that preserves the manufacturer’s warranties. This stipulation usually requires the contractor to provide follow-up maintenance and adjustments to all warranted equipment for a specified period of time.
An owner also should negotiate from the contractor a warranty that the project will be free of liens or adverse interests in the property once payment for work performed has been provided by the owner to the contractor.
The contractor is responsible for all applicable taxes related to work performed or materials purchased for the construction.
Permits, Fees, and Notices
On a normal construction project, the owner is responsible for obtaining the building permit, and the contractor is responsible for all other permits and fees required to complete the work. In large municipalities, like New York City, the list of permits, fees, and notices required for a development can be extensive and may involve many different agencies and bureaucracies.
To differentiate between the contractor’s and the owner’s responsibilities for permits, fees, and notices, the standard contracts assign to the owner the obligation for everything prior to bidding and signing the contract, and to the contractor everything necessary once the contract is signed. The responsibility for these documents should be clearly expressed in the contract documents and, if possible, attached to a calendar or schedule so that all parties know who is responsible for what and when it will be provided. Occupancy of multimillion-dollar projects has been delayed for want of a single card or slip of paper that no one was responsible for.
In every construction project, there are unknowns, just as there are conflicts and problems. Allowances are budget items that, for some reason, cannot be fully defined or specified at the time when the project is bid. The owner knows that these items will be used on the job and provides a budget amount to cover the expected costs. There is commonly a provision in the contract for an adjustment to the allowance amount once it can be fully defined. A typical allowance might be for wood beams in a renovation project, where the owner and architect have determined that some of the wood beams in the building will have to be replaced. However, without extensive demolition and testing of the existing beams, an accurate replacement cost cannot be established. An allowance is made for beam replacement, but it will be further defined and adjusted after demolition is complete. Contractors will calculate their bid for the project using this allowance amount as part of the contract price.
The contractor is a businessperson with a staff and subordinates or partners. The contract must provide that some individual on the contractor’s staff will be the superintendent for the project. It further provides that all communication with the superintendent shall be as binding as with the contractor directly. The superintendent is required to be in attendance on site during the construction process. This establishes a clear channel of communication between the owner and the contractor. There is no reciprocal clause for the owner other than direct communication with the project architect.
Contractor’s Construction Schedule.
The contractor must prepare a construction schedule immediately after being awarded the job. The standard contract provision states that the schedule should provide the “expeditious and practicable execution of the work” and shall be revised by the conditions of the work. These requirements are insufficient from the owner’s point of view, however, because they do not articulate the form, content, or level of detail necessary to properly manage a construction project. A prudent owner should modify this standard contract language to require from the contractor a detailed schedule that:
• Articulates the phases of construction.
• Establishes milestones that the owner can use to evaluate the progress of construction.
• Provides for revisions and potential delays.
This schedule will provide an agreed-on device for determining progress and a fair baseline for resolving allegations of delay. The schedule should be made part of the contract documents through incorporation into the construction contract.
Documents, Samples, Shop Drawings, Project Data
The contractor is required to keep these items at the project site for reference and review by the owner and architect and their agents. This is a useful requirement for several reasons.
First, the drawings, specifications, and shop drawings are constantly being revised to incorporate the latest changes to the work. These documents are dated with each revision, and the latest revision becomes the record copy. If work is completed from an earlier version that does not incorporate the latest change, serious cost increases and delays could result. By having the record copy on site, the architect can be assured that all changes to date have been incorporated into the actual work.
Second, many elements of a building are selected from catalogues by the project architect during the design and development phase of the project. Other elements are selected by what is known as a performance specification. This type of spec describes what the element is supposed to do without actually selecting a particular product or material. The contractor may select the particular product to be used, provided that it meets the performance standards of the specification. By having samples of these items on site, the architect and contractor can evaluate clearly any issue that may arise concerning their use on the project and expedite any approvals that may be required.
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West Jordan, Utah
84088 United States
Telephone: (801) 676-5506
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