What Is The Legal Definition Of Bankruptcy?

Bankruptcy involves legal processes that occur in a federal specialized court in order to assist businesses and individuals to repay debts or remove debts under protection from a bankruptcy court. All of the bankruptcy cases will be filed with the federal bankruptcy court. This court will be in an area that your business happens to be located or where you live.

The 2 main categories relating to bankruptcy include “reorganization” and “liquidation”. The liquidation bankruptcy which is also known as Chapter 7 bankruptcy is typically used by an individual and in some cases, a business whose expenses have become greater than the individual’s or business income and the debts cannot be paid back. The main reason for liquidation bankruptcy is to do away with specific debt that provides the individual with a clean slate.

When it comes to individual based liquidation bankruptcy a court discharges specific debts owed which will mean these debts fall away. An exchange for this discharge can be made with non-exempt property which can be sold. This money will then be utilized to pay back the creditors.

Reorganization bankruptcy is only used when the individual or business has enough income in order to pay the majority of the debts back over an extended time period. There are various reorganization bankruptcy types, but the one known as Chapter 13 happens to be the most commonly used in regards to consumers and individuals.

Chapter 13 bankruptcy involves that the business or individual is permitted to keep their property, but monthly payments need to be made over a period of 3 to 5 years in order to pay back the entire debt or a portion of the debt. A reorganization bankruptcy will require the business or individual to file for the repayment plan that will need approval from a bankruptcy court.

When in doubt, hire a bankruptcy attorney that can present you with options on which type of bankruptcy to file.

What Is The Legal Definition Of A Wrongful Death?

A wrongful death claim is in reference to a person that may be held liable for the death of another. This is something that can lead to civil action, typically filed by those that were relatives of the deceased, and is done because a person that has died cannot file this type of suit. There is a standard for proof that must be met in a United States courtroom which is based upon what is called a preponderance of evidence. It must be shown that there was convincing and clear intent on the part of the other to kill this other person.

Different Types Of Wrongful Death Claims

There are a couple different types of wrongful death claims that can be made such as those that are involved in automobile accidents, abuse, and medical malpractice. In fact, a car manufacturer may actually be sued in a wrongful death case if it is proven that multiple vehicles were defective with the same problems that led to multiple deaths. These are just a few of the many ways that this can be looked at, and what the judge will use in order to prosecute a person or a company.

Difficult Aspects Of Wrongful Death Lawsuits

One of the more difficult aspects of filing this type of lawsuit is exactly what the other person is liable for. There is also the fact that the other person may have actually killed the other as a result of self-defense. Additionally, if a person has committed suicide, and another person is thought to have helped them along, this is another aspect of a wrongful death case. All of the evidence will be decided upon by a judge that can make a decision based upon the evidence presented.

This basic overview of the legal definition of a wrongful death will give you a few ideas on what it actually means. It just depends on the situation, how the person died, and whether or not the other person, or even a business, is found to be responsible.  To help you learn more about the subject, we attached a video from JNY Law Firm which dives into Wrongful Death in a bit more detail.

The Legal Differences Between Prison And Jail

The terms jail and prison are more often than not used interchangeably, where people use jail to mean prison or prison to mean jail. However, there is a distinction between the two and it is important to acquaint yourself of the meaning of both terms, at least from a legal standpoint. Herein, we will explore the differences between jail and prison, just to clarify the explicit meaning of each of these terms.

Jail

One of the main distinguishing characterizations of a jail is the governing body charged running such as facility. Jails are typically run by city or county governments. Therefore, they tend to lock up a few number of people typically on a short-term basis.

Additionally, aside from the operating body, jails are also defined by the offenders they lock up. Typically, jails are used to lock up individuals sentenced to a jail term of less than a year. Such individuals are usually charged for misdemeanors criminal offenses. However, jails are also used to lock up arrested individuals waiting for trial, sentencing, plea agreements, or on transfer to another facility. In this regard, they are known as detention centers.

Prison

In using the bodies that the prisons and the sentence period to differentiate between jails and prison, you should note that prisons are usually run at the state level or at the federal level. Prisons are thus secure facilities run by the state or the federal government by the Federal Bureau of Prisons (BOP).

They are particularly developed for individuals convicted of committing felony offenses. Therefore, more often than not, they are sentenced to jail terms of more than a year, since their crimes are considered by law as serious crimes.

Prisons are also called penitentiaries. In this regard, one should use the term ‘penitentiary’ as a synonym of prison instead of using jail as a synonym for prison.

The Legal Definition Of Pain And Suffering

If you want to win a lawsuit, you’re going to have to demonstrate “pain and suffering” to the people overseeing your case. It isn’t enough to say that you suffered; you need to meet the legal definition of pain and suffering.

Here are some of the damages that fall under this category according to my friend Michael Sawicki of Sawicki Law Firm:

Shortening Of Life

Most people want to live a long and healthy life. If your life was potentially shortened because of an incident, that easily should meet the legal definition of pain and suffering. Anything that reduces your lifespan should qualify.

Temporary Or Permanent Limits On Your Activity

If you had to miss work because of an injury, you had a temporary limit on your activity levels. This qualifies as pain and suffering. If you lost a finger and are no longer able to type at the same rate you used to, that could qualify as well.

Scarring

Even if your injury didn’t put limits on your activity, it could meet the definition for pain and suffering. Scarring definitely qualifies, even if your job isn’t dependent on your appearance.

Depression And Other Mental Health Issues

Depression falls into the “suffering” portion of pain and suffering. However, if you are going to argue that you have been dealing with depression because of something that happened, you will have to see a mental health professional. Depression and sadness aren’t the same things; you are going to have to show that your overall mental health has decreased. The same is true for anxiety and PTSD.

As you can see, there are plenty of things that meet the legal definition of pain and suffering. If you are worried about the likely outcome of a case, you should talk to a lawyer. They will help to determine whether or not your circumstances fit this definition.

How to Amp Up Your Law Firm’s Profitability

One of the big questions that is on the minds of most businessmen and professionals in the world is how to increase their business. More often than not, this sort of question focuses primarily on increasing profit within the business itself. As an answer to this question, the business may resort to cutting costs in certain parts of the company where they can afford it or they may implement strategic methods of attracting customers and revenue among others. Of course, the smartest approach would generally be to kill two (or more) birds with one stone on the matter.

Sometimes, a matter of improving your business can lie within a universal solution. Technological advancements have been the easiest answer for the past several years in regard to drawing more business for many industries. And for your law firm, the answer is no different. Using practice management software to consolidate your business more effectively may well be the key that you’ve been searching for, both in order to cut down on certain costs as well as drawing in more clients to help your firm thrive in a rapidly-changing business climate.

As a law firm, you are obligated to stay in compliance with legal and ethical standards and it is a high priority for your firm. This sort of accountability also creates an atmosphere of trust around potential clients and even has the capacity to reinforce trust in an existing professional relationship. Managing the funds most efficiently could help overall satisfaction and potentially return clients in the future. Show that they can trust you as a law firm to manage their trust account and they may very well be encouraged to trust you with even more precious matters further down the road.

What is a better way to make clients feel comfortable with entering into an agreement with you? Many laymen might say providing a favorable settlement or court case. A more reasonable expectation might be the ability to maintain their privacy and keep confidentiality. In a world with an ever-expanding global network and individual privacy sometimes feeling like a rare commodity, assuring a client that their information is being handled with the utmost care can work quite heavily in a firm’s favor. Using high-end encryption programs within practice management software like Zola Suite, this demand has become much easier for your law firm to provide to your clients. Packages include 256-bit bank-level encryption for all electronic correspondence, which is a fancy way of being able to tell your clients that their privacy is as secure as most government or bank files. And while it may or may not necessarily be the favorable settlement or court date guarantee they might be seeking, giving your clients a little peace of mind while you work on their case may well afford you some returning business should they need it.

Looking at the Legal Definition of Probate

Probate is a word that can bring up many different mental images, but the general meaning of this word is very different when comparing it to the popular legal definition. Even among the various legal terms available, it’s worth noting that even several similar sounding terms are going to have quite different meanings. Legally speaking, probate refers to any law having to do with a legal will or executing the process of divvying up an estate after the owner’s death. What does this all include?

Probate & Wills
The most important aspect to a probate case is proving not only that a will actually was the true last wishes of whoever made it, but also that the will is legally viable and follows all the specific rules of state and federal law in order to be properly executed. This is part of the reason why having a lawyer look over your will is so important: to make sure it is actually acceptable according to court standards.

In many cases, a video tape or a written form with signature isn’t enough to guarantee that a deceased individual’s belongings are split the way that he/she wants them to be. The only way to make absolutely sure that the list wishes are followed is to make sure an experienced probate lawyer draws up the papers and helps to execute them.

While having some nonlegal documents is generally better than having nothing at all, there’s a reason probate law exists, and that isn’t even going into the fact that there is an entire court system dedicated to focusing specifically on any disagreements that come up with these very specific and important cases. Many people want to avoid probate so their loved ones can inherit their assets in a quick and timely fashion. This reinforces why having a probate attorney help draft up your living will can help your family from more legal responsibility in the future.

What Exactly Is The Difference Between Felony and Misdemeanor?

When a person is arrested, and they are charged with either a felony or a misdemeanor, they might be confused as to what the difference actually is. Most people know that being charged with a misdemeanor is not quite as bad as a felony, but understanding that difference is sometimes not easy to discern. These are two classifications of crimes that are committed in most states, both of which are worse than petty offenses. Let’s look at the difference between felonies and misdemeanors so that you understand the difference.

What Are Misdemeanors?

If you have been charged with a misdemeanor, you can be fined a certain amount of money, and you may do jail time, typically less than 12 months. Your time in jail would be at the county jail, and would certainly not be at a federal correctional institution like a prison. It is unlikely that the issue will go to trial, and you are not afforded a public defender because these issues are easily resolved by the judge. Felonies, on the other hand, carry more weight in regard to how much you can be fined and where you will spend time in jail if that is what the judge recommends.

What Is A Felony?

A felony is much more serious than a misdemeanor. In most states, it is up to a prosecutor to pursue an indictment of some sort, usually before a grand jury. They are punishable, just like misdemeanors, with time behind bars and also monetary penalties. Your time in jail will actually be in a prison if you are convicted of a felony, and you will be given the right to a public defender. Other penalties associated with becoming a felon include an inability to possess firearms, and also being prevented from certain jobs such as teaching or going into the military.

The exact amount of time that you will spend in jail or prison, and the amount of money that you will be fined, differ in every state. The severity of these penalties determined by the judge. Now that you know the difference, if you are ever convicted of either of these, you will have a general idea of what to expect. They are simply representative of the level of the crime that has been committed, each with their own penalties which are determined by each state.

Difference Between Murder And Manslaughter

The terms “murder” and “manslaughter” tend to get thrown around often, and people can confuse them.

It is best to understand what each term means before putting them to use in real life. Plus, those who are listening to the media might want to keep up as well because of how often these terms are used to define crimes committed in any part of the world.

Here is the difference between the two terms.

What Is Murder?

Let’s start with murder.

This is a term used to describe an act committed on purpose. It is done with intent to harm, injure, and kill.

However, there are two types of murder that fit into this category. These types are first-degree murder and second-degree murder.

First-degree murder is an act committed on purpose after a plan is set into place. This could be something as simple as following a police officer who arrested you and killing them.

Second-degree murder is an act committed on purpose but done in the heat of the moment. This can be something similar to shooting into a crowd and killing someone.

What Is Manslaughter?

So, what is manslaughter then? This is an act that is committed by accident.

For example, a person who is driving on the road ends up hitting someone and killing them. While you didn’t want to kill anyone, your actions end up being the reason for their death. DUIs tend to fall under this label as well.

It is important to note the difference because intention does matter. Murder tends to have a far worse legal consequence than manslaughter depending on the charges. This is why it is best to recognize these terms and use them in the right form.

The legal system pays attention to this while charges are being laid due to the difference in consequences.

What To Do If You Get A DWI

In this article, we will talk about what you should do if you ever get pulled over and happen to get a DWI. Getting a DWI can be a very expensive ordeal, along with lots of negative downfalls. Some of the negative things that can happen when you get a DWI include losing your license and jail time. Once you get pulled over they will arrest you if you seem to be over the legal limit. One of the great things we have in this country is that we have the right to a DUI attorney if needed.

We suggest having an attorney present if you have to undergo this process of getting a DWI. Once you have been to court, usually they will have a reset and you will go at a later date. The reason for this is so that you can talk with your attorney and figure out your best course of action. The next thing to do is to save up some money, as this is because the fines you will face are sometimes quite expensive.

Once you and you attorney agree on what course to take, it’s time to go back to court and inform the judge of what plea you choose. They will either charge you, or they can pursue a lesser or greater charge if they please. Remember, you should dress in business attire and be ready to speak loudly and clearly while you are in court. This will show the court that you take the issue seriously and that you are there to resolve the problem at hand.

In conclusion, we do not recommend drinking and driving, it can lead to serious car accidents and even wrongful death. However, this may happen to you and if it does, using these tips will help you to get through the process in an easier fashion.

5 Tips For Successfully Dealing With Credit Card Debt

Economic uncertainty often lends itself to people trying to make ends meet by opening up new lines of credit. Unfortunately, many people end up way over their heads and eventually owe more money than they can reasonably pay back. It’s important to learn how to manage credit card debt, and here are five solid tips:

1. It’s important to understand your spending by taking notes where your money is going. Many people are often shocked by the magnitude of what they owe, but that’s why it’s important to come up with a spending budget. Your budget shouldn’t surpass what you make each month.

2. Stick to your budget and don’t allow yourself to frivolously spend your money. The problem is that many times, all people see is a piece of plastic. Try using cash next time you go shopping and you’ll automatically spend less.

3. Try negotiating a lower interest rate for your credit cards. A polite phone call and a request are all that may be required of you to get better rates. Your credit score does play a role in your interest rates, but it never hurts to ask.

4. Come up with a payoff strategy for your cards. You can start by paying off the card with the lowest minimum balance or choosing to use the one with the highest limit to pay off other remaining balances.

5. Set goals for your spending in order to avoid racking up debt. By knowing where you need your money and what you can spend on miscellaneous things helps rein in debt.

Getting out of credit card debt requires quite a bit of due diligence on your part. Make sure you come up with a game plan and don’t max out your credit limit.