Tuesday, August 17, 2010

Gay marriages Put on Hold

The 9th circuit ruled on Monday to stay the recent ruling permitting gay marriage. The stay is effective at least until December when the court will hear arguments on the issue.

Monday, August 16, 2010

Father can Sue Mother of a Stillborn Fetus for Negligence

The father of a stillborn fetus can sue for negligence on a mother's part.  This is a case out of Wisconsin involving a car accident.  The mother of the fetus was involved in an auto accident with a third party.  The father initially sued the other party, however the lawsuit was rejected on summary judgement on a finding that the other party could not be liable for the mother's negligence.

On appeal, the court ruled that there is a causal link between a recent car accident and the subsequent death of a fetus.  The court further found that the pregnant woman, at least in Wisconsin, does owe a duty to the unborn child and thus could be civilly liable for negligence.

Tuesday, August 10, 2010

Interesting trend

Recently, there has been some discussion about whether children of non-citizen parents should get citizenship at birth in the U.S.  This debate has been renewed with the recent court ruling in Arizona banning significant portions of the Arizona immigration law.  While it may seem like an unusual step to take to deny children born on U.S. soil the right to be citizens, this is actually not an unusual trend around the world.  Take a look at some of the other modern countries around the world that have recently changed their laws to end birthright citizenship:
*Canada repealed in 2009.
*New Zealand repealed in 2006.
*Ireland repealed in 2005
*France repealed in 1993
*India repealed in 1987
*United Kingdom repealed in 1983
*Portugal repealed in 1981

Monday, August 9, 2010

Please Participate in our Poll

In light of the recent legal ruling out regarding the California ban on gay marriage, I've put up a poll to see what the reader sentiment was on the issue.

Please participate in our poll.

Thank you!

Sunday, August 8, 2010



Support to end citizenship for children of illegal immigrants grows

Here's an interesting story.  It's traditionally been the right for anyone born in the United States to get citizenship automatically.  However, a number of lawmakers are suggesting a constitutional amendment to change this right:

Frustrated by Congress' failure to do anything to curb illegal immigration, a number of prominent lawmakers are suggesting the time has come to consider repealing or rewriting the 14th Amendment to the U.S. Constitution, which guarantees citizenship to anyone born in the United States.

Read more…

Friday, August 6, 2010

Do you need a lawyer?

When do you need a lawyer?

Sometimes, it's obvious when you need the professional advice of a lawyer such as when you are being sued or charged with a crime.  But even in the most common situations a lawyer's advice, the advice of a professional can be an asset.

One of the first questions you need to ask yourself is "What is at risk?"  When you are faced with going to jail or losing a sum of money, you should always consult with a professional, no matter how straightforward the case.  The law and the courtroom is filled with pitfalls where the inexperienced could stumble, even in a simple case.  Remember the saying, "One who represents himself has a fool for a client."

With the complexities in the government and the law, the advice of an expert is important in a number of areas:  business, estate planning, drafting wills and trusts, family matter, adopting children, real estate and rent issues.  Good preparation is necessary when taking on these tough legal challenges.

Things to consider before you hire a lawyer?

If you have a legal matter where you believe you may need the advice of a lawyer, you can often arrange a consultation with a few phone calls.  Most lawyers can arrange a free consultation, they know that if they give good preliminary advice about a case, you are more likely to consider hiring them for your cause.  Remember, it never hurts to talk to a lawyer.

If you are concerned about the cost of consulting an attorney, often times, you can turn to local community or civil rights groups that offer free legal help and information.

Alternatively, some disputes may be settled by mediation or arbitration, rather than taking court action.  Nonetheless, a lawyer may be able to give you advice in how to negotiate a favorable outcome even in those settings.

How soon should you consult a lawyer?

The sooner the better.  In some cases, it's obvious that you need to act fast.  However, many times, it may appear that you have time to weigh your options, but preparation is always the key in any complex situation.  And the sooner you begin to prepare, the better your outcome.

A couple of things to keep in mind:  In many legal situations, there is a statute of limitations, meaning a deadline for you to take action before you loose the right forever.  These deadlines can be as short as weeks or months.  If you miss the deadline, you will forever lose your right to bring a claim.

What is your goal?

While this questions may seem simple, sometimes your objectives may not be clear. If you are in a situation where you area unlawfully charged with a crime, or someone is suing you for a large sum of money, your goal is clear. 

However, what if the situation is that you feel you were unlawfully let go from your job?  Do you want to sue for your job back, or try for some punitive damages without going back to a potentially hostile work environment.

Also, your lawyer can also tell you whether you have a viable claim, and how realistic your chances are of winning your case.  If you are unsure about your rights, a lawyer is a good investment which may ultimately save you time and money.

Questions for Your Attorney

  • How much experience do you have?
  • How much will a lawsuit cost me?
  • How long will the entire legal process take? Do I have a good chance of winning?

Wednesday, August 4, 2010

Judge Strikes Down Gay Marriage Ban

The Federal Judge in San Francisco strikes down the ban on gay marriage today, ruling that the law violates the US Constitution.

California: Ruling On Gay Marriage Expected Today

Demonstrators on both sides of the issue are preparing for a ruling that is anticipated to come out this afternoon on the legality of gay marriage.

US District Chief Judge Walker presided over the trial about the constitutionality of the gay marriage ban in California. This afternoon, Judge Walker will issue a ruling on whether the law violates equal protection and due process under the US Constitution.

Arizona Sheriff given deadline to comply in Civil Rights Investigation

This is an interesting story. Since March, 2009, the sheriff of Maricopa County, Joe Arpaio, has been under investigation for civil rights violations. The primary focus of those investigations have been for alleged discrimination and unconstitutional searches and seizures.

You may recall Joe Arpaio in recent news. He has virtually served as a spokesperson for local law enforcement in support of the Immigration Law. Of course, he was also the sheriff who urged demonstrators to follow the law during the protests, and then promptly began leading immigration sweeps in Immigrant neighborhoods immediately after a Judge banned key provisions of the Immigration Law. One of the main provisions dealt with the controversial portion requiring law enforcement to check immigrants for their papers. How does one sweep immigrant neighborhoods, while following the Judge's ruling?

Apaio states that the current investigation is primarily focused on alleged wrongdoings in his immigration efforts. Arpaio, along with his attorneys, have already indicated that they have no intention of cooperating with the inquiry. The Justice Department has now given a deadline of August 17, 2010 to turn over documents that were first requested last year.

Sunday, August 1, 2010

Should the Government legalized Gay marriage?

This is an interesting debate question.
Currently, this is a debate that is ongoing in several states. Opponents of gay marriage argue that there is a strong government interest in preserving the traditional family. The extension of this argument is that gay marriage would degrade family values and break down the importance of the traditional family.
Supporters of gay marriage argue that this is a myth.
In fact, the traditional family has evolved over the years. It's hard to define the traditional family in modern times. Are we talking about mom and dad and the kids, or is it mom, dad, step-mom, step-dad, and the half brothers and sisters. It's arguable that if allowed to marry, gay couples may cherish their hard won rights, resulting in a lower divorce rate amongst gay couples.
Opponents of gay marriage also point out that gay couples can avail themselves to a civil union which carries all the same rights as marriage. This is an interesting argument that certainly cuts both ways. If marriage and civil union are the same thing, then the same argument can be used to argue on behalf of legalizing marriage for gay couples. What's the difference, if it truly is the same thing. Consider the flip side for heterosexual couples. Calling my wife a civil partner just doesn't have the same ring.
Philosophy aside, what is a state's interest in marriage? Traditional marriage was invented in religion, however the government also has a legitimate interest in recognizing marriage in the law. The government interest in marriage is fundamentally in recognizing the property interest between a married couple. Without the legal recognition of marriage, the succession of property becomes problematic when someone passes away. Consider a non-married couple with a child born out of wedlock. If the father of the child passes away, the mother of the child would not be entitled to any property from the father. The minor child would likely inherit. However, if the couple were married, then the wife would have a property interest.
The government should have a strong interest in legitimizing these property rights amongst all couples who wish to tie the proverbial knot.
Lastly, consider the equal protection arguments. If there's no argument against allowing a legal civil union, which supposedly carries all the same rights as marriage, then why single out a single group of people to say that they can't use the word marriage to describe their union?

Protestors arrested in Arizona

So far about 80 protestors have been arrested in Arizona while demonstrating against the immigration law. Some of the protestors are prominent activists. Meanwhile law enforcement officials maintain that there is no profiling or targeting involved in these arrests.