Archive for February, 2011

Expungements in California

Monday, February 28th, 2011

March3Everyone makes mistakes. When those mistakes make their mark on a criminal record, it can destroy goals, hopes and dreams. Just one criminal conviction can make it very difficult to find employment or make advances in your career, only adding to your embarrassment.

Luckily, California law makes it possible to get an expungement off your criminal record. An “expungement” is court-ordered process in which a criminal conviction or criminal report is “sealed.”

Once your record is expunged, your criminal charge will not come up on your criminal background search for many employers and agencys. Some employers and agencies will still have access, but a vast majority of employers will not see the past criminal charge.

The rules for getting an expungement vary state to state. In most states, there is no expungement for those with felonies or sex offenses. Juvenile and misdemeanor convictions usually are eligible for expungement. Expungements can be especially beneficial for someone looking for a job. In California, most misdemeanors and some felony cases can be expunged.

To qualify for an expungement in California, you need to have finished probation, followed all court orders and have no new charges made against you. After the defined time period has passed, you may be eligible for expungement. To find out more, you should consult a criminal lawyer.

It is important to keep in mind that some criminal offenses cannot be expunged, or will take several years for expungement to take place. Expungement for sexual offenses or DUI cases, for example, should be discussed with a criminal defense lawyer, who can explain procedures and other outcomes.

A criminal defense lawyer can help relieve you from your prior conviction by helping you expunge your record. Attorney Search Network can help you find a criminal defense lawyer that can help defend your rights.

The Importance of Copyrights

Monday, February 28th, 2011

March2If you took the picture, you wrote it, you painted it or you sang it, it can fall under copyright law. Copyright law gives owners protection for their musical, artistic, literary and other works, whether or not they are published.

Copyright registration for your idea or business is important no matter what field it is concerned with. Companies and individuals are advised to register their copyrights in anything that can be valuable in order to prevent someone else from using your copyrighted work without your permission. If they do, you as the owner may be entitled to bring an infringement action against that person. Using a quote or a sample could be an exception to this. However, when in doubt, a person should ask the owner for consent.

Copyrights cover works such as:

  • Books
  • Poems
  • Sound recordings and musical works
  • Paintings, photographs and cartoons
  • Motion pictures and animation
  • Computer software (majority of material on the internet)

Copyrights do not cover:

  • Facts and measurements
  • Short words or phrases
  • Business names and book titles
  • Ideas
  • Processes

Copyright lawyers can help answer any questions about protecting the copyright of work you have created, or determining if someone can legally use someone else’s work. A copyright lawyer can also be useful when going through the process of copyrighting, such as preparing and submitting documents and even drafting license agreements. A lawyer can also help in copyright infringement cases in the event that someone violates your copyrights as an owner.

Can Chapter 13 Bankruptcy Save Your Home?

Monday, February 28th, 2011

March1You find yourself in a sticky situation – your mortgage payments are falling behind and fear of losing your home starts to surface. You start taking appropriate actions by speaking to your bank for a repayment plant, but may still feel that it’s more than you can afford to pay. Other homeowners that have been in a similar experience often turn to filing Chapter 13 bankruptcy as a solution.

Chapter 13 bankruptcy may be a good way to save your home if you are already behind on mortgage payments. Chapter 13 bankruptcy can give you a chance to pay either all or a portion of your debts through a repayment plan. It can give you the opportunity to pay unpaid mortgage payments within three or five years, depending on your income.

Not only can Chapter 13 bankruptcy help you take control of finances that have gotten out of control, it can help save your home. It can help you eliminate payments on your second or third mortgage, stop foreclosure proceedings and modify some debts secured by the property.

Bankruptcy is not something anyone wants to think about. However, sometimes tough circumstances force us to face difficult decisions. A Chapter 13 bankruptcy lawyer can assist you in creating a successful plan to save your home and pay off debts.

A bankruptcy lawyer that practices bankruptcy law can provide you with legal methods to either help you wipe out your debts by liquidating assets and distributing them among creditors. A bankruptcy lawyer can also help explain the primary purposes and applications of bankruptcy laws and how they function.

Third-Party Work Injuries

Monday, February 7th, 2011

February303Injuries happen. Workers’ Compensation insurance can help protect both you and your employer in case you get injured at work. But what happens when you get a work injury but your employer is not at fault?  If you are injured by equipment, machinery or vehicles that are not directly connected to your employer, you have an additional legal remedy against the third-party.

A third-party Worker’s Compensation claim can be brought if your on-the-job injury was from the negligence of a third party while you were at the job site. A third-party is someone other than your employer.

Defective machinery, a trench collapse or car accident while you’re on the job may not be directly your employer’s fault, therefore giving you additional rights against third parties that have an impact on your Workers’ Compensation claim. Some more examples of third-party work injuries are:

  • Falling from unstable scaffolding
  • Falling into an open trench created by another company
  • Injury from defective machinery
  • Injury from faulty work done by an outside company

There is no cap on the amount of damages you can recover for lost wages when it’s a third-party’s fault. You can get recovery for pain and suffering, medical bills, disability, lost wages and loss of quality or enjoyment of life.

For legal help with third-party Worker’s Compensation claims, contact Attorney Search Network. We can help refer you to a Workers’ Compensation lawyer in your area that can help with negotiations and litigation.

Not Rehired After An On-The-Job Injury?

Monday, February 7th, 2011

February202Have you suffered an injury at work and thought about what happens to your job while you are on Workers’ Compensation? Much like the Family Medical Leave Protections Act, there are legal protections in place to help secure your employment while you recover from your injury. This means your employer is often required to welcome you back to an equal level of employment upon your return, but it’s not a guarantee.

The legal requirements vary – every person and every employment situation is different. Some employers may improperly terminate you from employment after an on-the-job injury. If your employer does not rehire you once you can return to work, it is a good idea to contact a wrongful termination lawyer.

A wrongful termination lawyer can assist you in case your employer does not rehire you after you recover. Keep in mind that there are many rules, regulations and requirements that may or may not apply to your situation. In most cases, if there is suitable employment, your employer should offer you your position. If your employer refuses to rehire you without reasonable cause, you may be eligible a victim of wrongful termination.

A position should be offered to you if the employment available falls within your injury restrictions.  A labor law lawyer can help ensure your employer is treating you fairly and lawfully.

If you believe your employer lacked good reason for not rehiring you, a labor law lawyer can help you file an application for a formal hearing. Contact Attorney Search Network to be referred to a labor law lawyer that can help.

Settle Your Workers’ Compensation Claim

Monday, February 7th, 2011

February101Workers’ Compensation law is designed to protect both employee and employer in case of an on-the-job injury. In California, employers are required to carry Workers’ Compensation insurance that covers loss of earnings, medical expenses and on-going therapy or treatment. In case of an injury, employees are entitled to be covered by the insurance company their employer has selected.

Often times, determining an employee’s eligibility and compensation can be complicated and can lead to disputes. To make matters more complex, insurance companies make more money by paying out as little as possible by delaying or denying valid Workers’ Compensation claims.

When you’re suffering an injury, a delayed or denied Workers’ Compensation claim can be devastating. You can lose your home, cars, life savings, and retirement funds because of your inability to work and added medical expenses.

If you feel the insurance company is not working in your best interest, you need to contact a Workers’ Compensation lawyer. A Workers’ Compensation lawyer can advocate for on your behalf so you can make sure to receive fair payment and medical care for your injuries.

If your employer is not being helpful or is discouraging you from using full Workers’ Compensation insurance after an on-the-job injury, you should seek legal help.

Contact Attorney Search Network today if you have a valid Workers’ Compensation claim that has been delayed or denied by the insurance company for no reason. Attorney Search Network can help you find a Workers’ Compensation lawyer that can help you get the right settlement for your work related injury.