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Hawaiian attorneys have the luxury of practicing in one of the most beautiful places on Earth. There are 4,126 attorneys in Hawaii, one of the few states to see a decline in attorneys since 2007.
Hawaiian lawyers are licensed to practice anywhere on the islands. Attorneys in Hawaii are familiar with the Hawaiian Supreme Court, Circuit Court, Court of Appeals, District Court, and Family Court. The vast majority of courts in Hawaii are located on Oahu. Oahu is in fact the only island with an incorporated city, Honolulu. Every other island is organized at the county level, with administration of the entire island belonging to county administrators and the island’s Mayor.
Many unique Hawaiian laws are related ensuring the survival of native Hawaiian plant and animal species. Before the arrival of European colonizers, Hawaii had no large mammals other than bats. Now, Hawaii takes the preservation of its native ecology extremely seriously. In fact, airline passengers leaving Hawaii cannot even check-in before having their baggage scanned and/or ispected and tagged by agricultural inspectors.
Hawaii is one of many states to explicitly outlaw same sex marriage. Hawaii is also not a community property state, which means that property acquired during marriage is not assumed to be the property of both spouses.
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Property in Hawaii is always a big issue, primarily because it is in such short supply. The Federal Government owns almost 50% of the land in Hawaii. In the 1960s, 72 people owned the other half. Citing outrageous prices for land and rent, the state legislature tried to break up this monopoly on land ownership. In 1984 the controversial Supreme Court case of Hawaii Housing Authority v. Midkiff upheld their decision. The legislatures plan did not work however, and housing prices actually increased by 6 times.
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