Consequences of Possessing Drug Paraphernalia in Texas

According to the website of The Law Offices of Mark T. Lassiter, drug paraphernalia is defined as any item that is intended to use, conceal, or prepare an illicit drug. This can include common household items such as scales, measuring cups or spoons, bowls, bags or envelopes. Most commonly charges are made against the possession of pipes and bongs.

Sentences for these charges vary case by case, but there are guidelines for the sentences in Texas. First possession is considered a misdemeanor and has no prison sentence, but you can be charged a $500 fine, if you have no previous felonies. First possession with intent to sell the paraphernalia is also a misdemeanor, but can result in up to one year in prison and $4,000 in fines. Being charged a second time with possession and intent to sell is a felony with a mandatory 90 days to one year prison sentence and $4,000 in fines. Being charged with selling paraphernalia to a minor is a felony as well and carries a hefty mandatory prison sentence of 180 days to two years and $10,000 in fines. These are serious penalties that will later be shown on back ground checks and can affect your job outlook in the future.

It is possible to avoid serving time in prison if it is your first offense or if you were in possession of a very small amount of paraphernalia. County laws and regulations alter the punishments as well. Depending on your specific county and judge, you may to sentenced to community service, probation, and/or be required to enroll in a drug treatment program.

However, evidence of drug paraphernalia possession must be attained in a legal manner to prove the criminal charge. If the officers did not have probable cause, your consent to enter your residence, or a search warrant then you may be able to challenge the legality of the charges. Consult a criminal defense lawyer in your area to learn more about your specific legal options.

How Vaginal Birth Injuries can Cause Cerebral Palsy

Cerebral palsy (CP) is caused either by damage to, or abnormal development of, the brain either during pregnancy, delivery, or after birth. This results in the inability to control muscles and a difficult life for both the parents and child. Precautions can be taken during and after pregnancy by regularly seeing your doctor and following their instructions. The development of CP is unfortunately often the result of medical malpractice or inattention by the attending doctors or nurses.

The most common injuries sustained during childbirth that result in CP as being nerve damage, asphyxiation, and improper use of an epidural. Nerve damage can be caused during a regular delivery when the doctor could simply pull too hard or twist the baby’s head and neck in the same direction. There can also be cephalopelvic disproportion, which is when the baby’s head is bigger than the mother’s pelvis. Most often the baby just needs a little help to get through by the use of forceps, vacuum, or other medical tool. Misuse of these devices can result in nerve damage and the development of CP.

Asphyxiation starves the baby’s brain of oxygen and results in irreparable damage. Asphyxiation can be caused from the premature separation of the placenta, the umbilical cord being wrapped around the baby’s neck, or if the baby fails to breathe on its own after birth. Breathing delays of longer than three minutes are at risk for brain damage. Therefore, the birthing team must be attentive and react quickly to such problems to prevent harm to the infant.
Lastly damage can be cause by the improper use of an epidural. Most common is an improper dosage. If the mother is given too much of the drug, her heart and breathing rate slows. This lowers the oxygen levels in her system and can result in asphyxiation of the infant.

Cerebral palsy seriously affects the lives of parents and children and sadly is often the result of birthing injuries. Contact a personal injury or medical malpractice lawyer in your area to learn more about legal options related to birthing injuries.

Chapter 13 Bankruptcy Can Stop Foreclosure

Foreclosure is a fear that many homeowners have. When a homeowner falls behind on their mortgage payments the lender has the legal right to foreclose on their home and auction it off to the highest bidder. This doesn’t happen immediately; you have to have missed several payments and there is a process that the lender must follow. One of the things that the lender must do is notify you if your home is being foreclosed on. If you receive one of these notices there is still something you can do to save your home: file for chapter 13 bankruptcy.

The word bankruptcy is scary and intimidating but it can save your home. Chapter 13 bankruptcy lets you keep your home in a few ways. The first is automatic stay. What this means is that when you file for bankruptcy your creditors are ordered to stop the collection process immediately, including the selling of your home. This typically lasts between three and four months, but depends on how long it takes for your filing to process.

There are two exceptions to automatic stay, however. You creditor can file a motion to lift the stay, in which they would have to receive permission from the bankruptcy court to sell your home despite you having filed for bankruptcy. If this happens, you will typically still have a month or two before being foreclosed on, but this varies on how quickly your creditor files the motion. The only other exception to automatic stay depends on if the foreclosure notice was filed already. Creditors must give you a notice period for foreclosure by law, but the time varies by state. If your notice period passes early on in your bankruptcy filing, then the creditor can file a motion to lift the stay as described above. Time matters, so if you have received a foreclosure notice you need to act quickly to prevent this from happening.

Chapter 13 bankruptcy stalls the foreclosure process when you file, but you still have to set up a payment plan. You are still required to make your current mortgage payments while making the payments to your debt, so there are some income requirements. However, after all of your payments are made the court forgives your remaining debt and you get to keep your home. If you have received a foreclosure notice or are falling behind on your mortgage payments, consult a foreclosure defense or bankruptcy attorney in your area.

Negotiating Child Support

Divorce is a very real and devastating issue that many individuals face. No one expects going into a marriage that it will end, but when it does it is necessary to make sure you take the proper steps to a fair separation. This can become even more straining and complicated when you have children together and child support becomes a problem. According to the website of the BB Law Group PLLC, negotiating a child support agreement is one of the most complicated parts of a divorce. How could it become worse? When your ex fails or refuses to pay child support to the parent holding custody, major financial strain can be placed on the parent not only hurting the parent themselves, but the child. They are a few steps you can take when you have a less than reliable ex spouse when it comes to paying child support.

A common mistake individuals make is planning their future financial endeavors expecting that their ex spouse will pay child support. This can have horrible affects when the child support fails to come in. A way to prevent this is to budget without the child support money factored in. Another downfall that parents can make is not keeping in proper contact with their ex. They may not have their ex spouse’s proper number or address, so when child support payments suddenly end, they have no way of contacting them. This can be prevented by constantly keeping the ex spouse involved and having contact with them regularly if they are required to pay child support. This can ensure that you do not have even more trouble than already comes when child support payments fail to come in.

Unfortunately, individual efforts are often not enough to make your ex start paying child support again. If this is the case, a family lawyer may be necessary. The most lucrative child support agreement can be made between you and your ex with this help, according to the Arenson Law Group, PC website. A highly skilled lawyer can help in working out all of the case’s factors.

It is against the law for your ex to not make their child support payments and hiring a lawyer may be the only option for individuals struggling without the help of their es spouses to handle the expensive and sometimes daunting task to raise a child on their own.

Insurance Bad Faith in Light of Texas Flooding

With the recent major flooding in Texas, many individuals have seen extreme damage to their property. This includes flooding to their homes, property damaged beyond repair, cars being flooded out, and other damages. These floods have had a devastating affect on residents of Texas and often cause the need for repairs beyond the means of individuals. As a result, many individuals are contacting their insurance companies to receive compensation to help them recover from this unexpected natural disaster.

Many are surprised when their insurance company does not follow through immediately on the promises made when they first signed up with the company. According to the website of Smith Kendall, PLLC, insurance companies can act in bad faith toward their policy holders to help their bottom lines. They can delay coverage for the holders by requiring excessive paperwork, not acknowledging they have received the claim, or by underestimating the dollar amount the holder needs for their property damage. These can not only delay the coverage the clients need in a time of crisis, but may prevent them from receiving coverage at all. This does not only violate the trust the holders placed in the insurance company they paid for years, but is often against the law.

In these times, we see insurance companies taking advantage of their policyholders in the time that they need them most. In order to ensure you are receiving proper compensation for their losses, it is often necessary for individuals to hire bad faith insurance lawyers. The expertise of these lawyers may be required to guide clients in the right direction in filing a bad faith insurance claim and receive as much as they can.

Property damages are many times out of the hands of the owners whether they are caused by a burst pipe, a fire, or a natural disaster like the recent flooding in Texas. Without the guidance of a bad faith lawyer, many are left without proper compensation in their greatest time of need which can result in financial ruins.

Drunk Driving Car Accidents

Living in a college town, it seems as though drunk driving is a very real and ever present danger we face. Whether after a night on sixth street or after having too many cocktails at a restaurant, many individuals choose to get behind the wheel and operate a motor vehicle putting others at extreme danger. Sadly, sometimes the choices of another person can have a dramatic and devastating effect on an individual, causing injuries from bad bruises to traumatic brain injuries that can change a person’s life forever.

Injuries like these are completely out of the hands of the person driving the other car safely. Some common signs of drunk driving include swerving between lanes, sudden stops and starts, and not obeying traffic signs. Even if you do notice these signs, some accidents are unavoidable. Drunk drivers kills thousands of people every year, taking the lives of innocent people.

Sometimes legal action may even be necessary to deal with drunk driving incidents after the occur. According to a personal injury lawyer website, victims of drunk driving can be forced to deal with extensive medical bills, lost wages, and other financial distress. Victims also are subjected to immense emotional suffering caused by these accidents.

Even with countless campaigns against drunk driving, the number of drivers who choose to operate a vehicle under the influence is on the rise. Individuals need to be aware of the actions of other drivers. To absolutely no fault of the other driver, drunk driving can have life altering emotional and financial effects on an individual.

Protections against Wrongful Termination

When you hear about someone being fired, you typically imagine the employee has done something wrong according to job performance or that the company they worked for was forced to lay off workers due to a financial need. But what if the employee was wrongfully terminated because of something that they could not control or was not related to how they performed at their job at all?

Sometimes companies fire people based on a reason prohibited by law. According to the website of Cary Kane LLP, these reasons can include age, gender, sexual orientation, nationality, and many others. People can also be fired based on retaliation. This includes if an employee raises concerns to an employer about a work related issues such as safety and other violations. Termination based on these factors can not only affect the employee financially but can cause emotional distress as well.

Many of those who are wrongfully terminated do not know that they can receive compensation if this happens to them. States have laws that protect employees against discrimination in the workplace and thus termination based on this.  Each state has different laws and standards so an employment lawyer is necessary to receive the correct compensation for your personal situation.

Wrongful termination can have lasting and horrible effects on the employee but many times is protected under employment laws.