The Legal Insider

July 2010

Had a Blast on Independence Day?

One of our favorite times of year is July. It's hot, baseball is in full swing, and we get to celebrate the awesomeness of the United States with a wide range of small explosives.

If you're the kind of person who made their own fireworks or likes extreme home displays, you will definitely want to read the rest.

We're all sick of Independence Day public service announcements about how fireworks are dangerous, but there are still about 9,300 injuries each year during late June and mid-July. Over half of those will are children. Those statistics also fail to take into account other firework-related incidences like home fires and damaged roofs. But who, if anyone, is liable for damages?

There are two major kinds of cases that come from fireworks mishaps. A negligence lawsuit is common if you've hurt someone inadvertently or damaged their property. Bottle rockets are illegal in many states as a result. Second, products liability lawsuits are related to mishaps with defective fireworks. Product liability lawsuits are tougher to win because they require unexpected danger, which is hard to prove when it comes to things that are meant to explode and burn. If you were injured by a professional fireworks display you should consult with a lawyer today.

Top Summer Music Festival Crimes: Fake ID's, MIP's & Drugs

Music Festivals are a great way to see lots of your favorite artists, often with mind-blowing combinations, as well as discovering new favorites. We would have loved to hear The Flaming Lips cover Pink Floyd's "Time" live at Bonnaroo Music Festival this year.

The most common criminal charges stemming from concerts include citations for minors in possession (MIP) of alcohol, using a fake form of identification, and drug charges.

If you're caught using a fake ID you could face anything from a $500 ticket and misdemeanor charge to felony impersonation or forgery charges with upwards of 1½ years in prison.

Underage kids who practice shoulder tapping or who are caught with alcohol face underage drinking laws.  Consequences range from hefty fines, suspension of license, community service, and jail time but always include mandatory alcohol awareness courses.

Marijuana seems to be sort-of a staple smell at a lot of concerts and especially music festivals. Despite what your friend told you and whatever you've heard about legality, marijuana is still illegal for the Average Joe and drug charges can be some of the harshest. If you've been accused of a drug crime, contact a lawyer immediately.

Let's all try to take care of each other out there. See you at some of the upcoming shows below:

Suing for Emotional Distress

Emotional distress lawsuits are very sticky topics because courts are forced to decide to what extent you were emotionally affected by an event or action of others. Emotional distress lawsuits can mean big bucks and normally work in tandem with a lawsuit for personal injury. There are two kinds of emotional distress lawsuits:

Negligent Emotional Distress involves negligently acting or not acting in a manner that causes someone to endure emotional pain.   There must be a connection between the conduct and the emotional distress, and to be successful must also result from a physical injury or have physical manifestations.

Intentional Emotional Distress lawsuits must prove that the wrongdoer's conduct was reckless or intentional, intolerable, and possess a strong connection between the outrageous conduct and the emotional distress.

If you have been injured or are a victim of emotional distress you may be entitled to monetary compensation. Consult a pre-certified local lawyer from LegalMatch and they will lay out your options and work with you to find recourse for your suffering.

Save Money: Apply for Permanent Residency Today

It would be surprising to find someone who isn't aware of the current debacle of immigration reform. Both parties agree that something needs to be done. Most recently, there are reports that the Federal Government will be hiking up the prices from just under $700 to roughly $1,000 for folks who want to become permanent legal United States citizens. Just before they raised the cost in 2007, there was a 69% increase in applicants trying to save some money. But which visa is right for you?

The immigration process is very involved, requiring a lot of legwork on your part to gather essential documents like fingerprints, photos, and criminal records. Furthermore, you also have to make sure you are filing all of the various application materials at the appropriate time and with the correct U.S. Immigration Court. There are a number of permanent visas available for immediate family members, marriage, work, and long term illegal residents.

The cost of becoming a U.S. citizen is on a consistent rise, which means the sooner you apply the better. LegalMatch lawyers in your area can help you sort through the confusing paperwork, decipher which visa is best for you, and beat the increasing fee. As always, our service is free, your satisfaction is guaranteed

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