Rules and regulations are no joke for the authorities within the United States. California is a bit stricter in its policies, especially regarding the Department of Motor Vehicles (DMV). As in all other states, in order to acquire a driver’s license or license plate in California, one must register their motor vehicles and boats with the DMV of California.
However, numerous people face confusion and difficulty in the matter regarding the application procedure for license. Often times, people are new to the state of California and might be unfamiliar with the policies. Anyhow, there’s no need to worry in this regard because we’ve got you covered.
New to California?If you’ve recently established residency within the state of California, it’s quite likely that you’re wondering whether applying for a California driver’s license is absolutely necessary or not. It’s not as difficult as you might have presumed. However, it’s important that you apply for your driver’s license in California within 10 days after you have established residency within the state.
California Drivers Advocates is a team of administrative advocates that represents drivers in California when their license comes into question. You can learn more about them and their services to help California drivers here, or if you have received any type of notice from the dmv you can visit the resource website they have setup here.
A 26 year old man in Los Angeles was arrested after a DMV investigation found he had been posing and a DMV employee and taking money in exchange for the promise of removing license suspensions and fixing other renewal fee related issues. The man had posted ads on websites such as craigslist and was charging victims between $200-$400. While investigators were serving a warrant they seized his phone, which was continuing to receive calls from victims requesting their money back. Many of these victims were located in the Inland Empire.
The DMV investigators report he had learned of the scam from others, so they believe the scam may be active in California as well as Nevada. The DMV reminds people to always be aware of the way they are providing money to people, where they found the service and if anything seems out of the ordinary to do a simple internet search to learn a bit more. To read the original DMV press release click here.
While California Drivers Advocates represents California Drivers at the DMV in Fraudulent Activity Hearings these above actions depicted are not DMV hearing matters, but rather subject to criminal prosecution. If you or someone you know is facing a license suspension or revocation, California Drivers Advocates can help. They also host a resource website for California Drivers to learn about defending their driver license found here.
Many people are very overwhelmed by the “estate plan” discussion. When the issue is raised, most people zone out or attempt to change the subject. Visions of paper and signatures and legal jargon and filing documents and changing accounts come to mind. However, having a plan is not only for your property and money – it is also to help your family with end of life decisions.
Wills & Trusts
A will and trust help a person identify how they want their property distributed after death. But, there are several differences between a will and a trust. A will helps a person distribute their property on death, but in order to distribute the property, the will has to be “probated”. Probate requires the will be validated, the deceased person’s assets be inventoried and valued, all debts and creditors to be paid, and, finally, for the remaining assets to be distributed. Probate can take a year to 18 months and may be costly. A trust is often a comprehensive document, which also helps a person, or a couple, distribute their property on death. But, a trust will help you avoid probate and will provide confidentiality. This document never has to be introduced into court. When you are setting up a trust, the cost is more than a will, but may save more money in the long run. Again, there are several differences between the two, but these are some of the highlighted. Either document will help your family carry out your wishes.
Power of Attorney
Another important document, which every person should have, is a power of attorney. A power of attorney is a written document giving another person authorization to make financial and legal decisions for another, if that person should become hospitalized, disabled or otherwise incapacitated. There are many types of powers of attorney – limited powers of attorney, durable powers of attorney, or specific powers of attorney. Medical powers of attorney can be separate documents, completely.In the event you are hospitalized or disabled, it is imperative to give a trusted person the ability to take care of your finances and your health care decisions.
Updated Beneficiary Designation Forms
Beneficiary designation form is a form, which, not surprisingly, designates a beneficiary for a policy or an account. For life insurance policies, 401(k) accounts and other assets, a beneficiary designation form will generally override any conflicting provisions within a will or trust. Often, people forget to update these forms and, when the estate plan is updated,there is now a conflict. In order to make sure the asset goes to who you desire, review these forms annually.
If you are in need of assistance, and could use the advice of a local estate planning lawyer. A qualified attorney who understands the ramifications of your legal documents today and in the future can be worth far more than the cost of a consultation and document preparation.
A press release by the California DMV on May 4th, 2017 detailed new requirements for California drivers who were seeking to obtain a commercial driver license, or those who held such licenses and were looking to renew them. The new requirements were specifically related to the acceptable forms of documents used for applying or renewing commercial licenses. The press release stated. “All new commercial driver license applicants will be required to provide the DMV with proof of California residency as well as proof of U.S. citizenship, lawful permanent residency, or legal presence.”
Despite the California DMV requiring proof of legal presence since 1994, these new requirement changes reduce accepted documents in an effort to align to the Federal Government’s requirements which were adopted in 2012. For a complete list of accept documents to verify legal presence in California, view the DMV’s website here.
California Drivers Advocates is a team of DMV Defense Experts who represent California drivers at the DMV. Their services include special certificate hearing defense for ambulance drivers, tow truck drivers, school bus drivers and more. Learn more about California Drivers Advocates and their Expert DMV Defense.
Joshua Tree – A beautiful destination, but not without risks.
In a recent article by Jenna Hunt of The Desert Trail, it was noted that the National Park at Joshua Tree California could experience a record number of visitors exceeding 2 and a half million. The National Park has long been a tourist destination for hikers, rock climbers, campers and people just looking to cross another park off their list. The park aside from being a beautiful outdoor destination by itself also draws many visitors from nearby Palm Springs and Palm Desert, just minutes away. Palm Springs and Palm Desert bring in its own bounty of worldwide travelers and the ease of visiting Joshua Tree most likely contributes to the growing number of visitors to the park.
Every guest at Joshua Tree are subject to State DUI laws
While the park staff reminds people to obey speed limits there are other potentially consequential regulations to adhere to. Vacation is typically a time to relax and unwind and the businesses around the park offer great food and with that always the chance to get a quick drink or two, but keeping in mind that traffic and penal code laws apply may save some unwanted headache. Regardless of your residence status: a resident, a guest or even a foreign traveler, California State DUI laws apply to everyone in and around Joshua Tree National Park. Because the park is under the jurisdiction of the federal government visitors have a triple threat when it comes to DUI. There are n=National Park Rangers, San Bernardino County Sheriff’s Deputies and even California Highway Patrol. Each of these law enforcement agencies has the ability to conduct traffic stops and even arrests for DUI.
Arrested for DUI in Joshua Tree – A Local DUI Attorney Can Help
If you were arrested in or around Joshua Tree National Park for DUI and don’t know where to turn the Law Offices of Manuel J. Barba can help. We exclusively defend victims of DUI, nothing else. We practice right here in the desert and have been successfully defending against DUI charges for both residents and visitors alike. The DUI timeline starts as soon as you were arrested so reaching out to a professional immediately can provide a better chance at a successful defense. For a free consultation or a summary of your rights and responsibilities contact our Joshua Tree DUI lawyer for a no obligation and completely free consultation.
The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration recently reported that in 2015, nearly two thousand young drivers were killed in motor vehicle accidents, which was an increase of nine percent from 2014. In addition, nearly 200,000 young drivers sustained injuries in car accidents in 2015, which was an increase of fourteen percent from 2014. In California alone, 431 people died in accidents involving young drivers, including the young drivers themselves, their passengers, occupants of other vehicles, and non-occupants such as pedestrians and bicyclists.
Teen Drivers Nearly 3X More Likely to be in a Fatal Accident than Drivers 20 Years and Older
According to the National Center for Health Statistics, other statistics reveal that motor vehicle accidents are a leading cause of death for those between the ages of fifteen and nineteen. In fact, teen drivers are nearly three times more likely to be in a fatal accident than drivers who are aged twenty years and older. This high risk is due in part to the fact that younger drivers are more inexperienced than older drivers in the United States. Other factors that put teen drivers at risk include:
This GDL system recommendation includes a minimum age of sixteen years to obtain a learner’s permit, a mandatory twelve-month learner’s permit period, and nighttime driving and passenger restrictions.
The Centers for Disease Control publish Prevention Status Reports that highlight the status of public health policies and practices that are designed to address different health problems and concerns, including motor vehicle injuries. While California does not score as high as other states when it comes to the PSRs, California has at least taken steps to reduce or prevent accident-related injuries and deaths in some policy and practice areas. California does require seat belts for all vehicle occupants, and places some nighttime driving and passenger restrictions on young drivers, but the minimum age for obtaining a State learner’s permit is fourteen years, seven months, and the mandatory holding period for a learner’s permit in California is only six months. While these policies and practices won’t prevent accidents entirely, they will go a long way towards reducing the number of young driver deaths and injuries.
The Law Offices of Matthew Taylor in Rancho Cucamonga Can Help you Obtain the Compensation you Deserve
If you’ve been injured in a motor vehicle accident in California, it is imperative that you consult with an experienced car accident lawyer as soon as possible. Call the Law Offices of Matthew L. Taylor today at (909) 989-7774 to schedule your free consultation, serving the Inland Empire for over 20 years.
Photo Credit: https://www.flickr.com/photos/statefarm/
The statute of limitations is an important “deadline” of sorts that personal injury victims and their family members must keep in mind when determining how to protect and assert their legal rights. If an injury victim or the surviving family members of a person killed by another’s negligence fails to file a claim for damages before the statute of limitations expires, then the claim can easily be dismissed and the claimant be barred from attempting to obtain compensation for those expenses and losses through a lawsuit.
Issues with California’s Wrongful Death Statute
California law gives the surviving family members two years from the date of an injury or death to file their claims for damages. While this may seem like a straightforward limitation, there are situations that may arise in a wrongful death case that make applying this statute of limitation more difficult:
Reach Out to Your Riverside Wrongful Death Law Firm
Heiting & Irwin, APLC has four decades of experience helping injury victims and the surviving family members of those killed as a result of another’s careless actions recover compensation for their expenses, losses, and injuries. Contacting us as quickly as possible following your loved one’s injury or death can help ensure that your legal right to pursue compensation is protected. Call us at (951) 682-6400 or complete our online form to schedule a free initial consultation.
Photo Credit: https://pixabay.com/en/users/ManfredKain-3578327/
Tackling Elder Abuse in San Bernardino & Riverside Counties
When you entrust a family member to the care of a facility, there’s an expectation of compassion and empathy to be given. Often times family members don’t have the time or resources to properly help care for their loved one full time, and you have to trust that the facility you choose can implement a care plan and take responsibility for your loved one. Many reputable nursing & care facilities seek to hire the best caretakers and have strict operating procedures in place to make sure your family member is getting the best care available and the attention that they need. However, ABC recently reported that nearly 30% of elderly residents at care facilities endure some sort of physical, emotional or financial abuse.
This news prompted us to seek comment from one of the Inland Empire’s premier injury litigators, Cory Weck of McCune Wright Arevalo, LLP in Ontario, who’s currently litigating two elder abuse cases involving care facilities.
InlandEmpireLawyers.com: How long have you worked as a personal injury lawyer?
Mr. Weck: I’ve been a lawyer for over 20 years, but I’ve practiced nothing but personal injury law on behalf of individuals for the past 15 years
InlandEmpireLawyers.com: What are the most common ways cases of caretaker abuse discovered?
Mr. Weck: Usually abuse is discovered when it’s too late and the consequences are irreversible. Since the family often doesn't live in close proximity to the home where their loved one is located, it’s usually a call from the ER when they first become aware that something bad had occurred.
InlandEmpireLawyers.com: What are the alert signals that family members should look for, or be aware of that would indicate elder abuse?
Mr. Weck: Do you notice a significant change in your loved one’s demeanor? Do you notice bruising? Do you notice that they don’t seem to want to eat anymore? Is there a lot of turnover in the staff?
InlandEmpireLawyers.com: Are there any reporting agencies or resources people can use to research complaints against a facility or care taker?
Mr. Weck: Yes there are agencies both at the local level and the state level one can report complaints to against the facility like Adult Protective Services in San Bernardino or Riverside Counties.
InlandEmpireLawyers.com: What should someone do if they suspect that a loved one is being abused by someone at a care facility?
Mr. Weck: It really depends on the severity of the abuse. For more minor type of complaints I would start with the facility management and then work up through the chain of command if your concerns are not addressed. For more serious events immediately file a complaint with your county agency and the state. If serious or deadly harm occurred I would advise seeking local counsel who has experience in these types of claims.
Elder Abuse & Negligence Resources
National Center on Elder Abuse: https://ncea.acl.gov/resources/state.html
National Center for State Courts: http://www.ncsc.org/Topics/Children-Families-and-Elders/Elder-Abuse/Resource-Guide.aspx
National Committee for the Prevention of Elder Abuse: http://www.preventelderabuse.org/
Photo Credit: https://pixabay.com/en/users/Unsplash-242387/
Whenever a trial date is set, a party may demand simultaneous exchange of expert witness information (Code of Civil Procedure § 2034.210).
If a party fails to comply with the exchange of expert witness information, and the other side objects, “the trial court shall exclude from evidence the expert opinion” of said witness. (Code of Civil Procedure § 2034.300)
The recent case of Perry v. Bakewell Hawthorne, LLC, (2017) Cal. Lexis 1351, raised a novel issue as it relates to the above sections. Perry was a personal injury matter wherein the plaintiff fell on defendant’s property. Defendant moved for summary judgment, which was set to be heard after the exchange of expert witness information.
In his opposition, plaintiff used the declarations of two experts to demonstrate that the stairs he fell on were in disrepair and did not comply with building code and industry standards. The problem was that neither of these two declarants had been identified in the expert witness information exchange.
The issue became whether the exclusionary rule of CCP § 2034.300 applied only to the use of those experts at trial or whether it also applied at the summary judgment stage.
Ultimately, the Supreme Court of California held looked to the Section governing motions for summary judgment – CCP § 437c. They held, Section 437c(d) requires that affidavits and declarations submitted in summary judgment proceedings “set forth admissible evidence.” They held that when the court determines an expert opinion is inadmissible because disclosure requirements were not met, the opinion must be excluded from consideration at summary judgment if an objection is raised.
In this matter, because the declarations attached to the opposition to motion for summary judgment were by two experts whom would be excluded from testifying at trial, their declarations were similarly inadmissible to refute the defendant’s motion for summary judgment.
Published By: Jean-Simon Serrano
Photo Credit: https://www.flickr.com/photos/surreynews/
Are you married, but want to direct the passing of your property to someone other than your spouse? Are you considering getting a divorce or already in the divorce process? Or are you recently divorced? In any case, it is important to know how marriage or a divorce in California affects distribution of your estate.
To start, there are some general rules to be aware of. If are married and you do not have a will in place, if you die, your share of the estate (one-half of the community property) will pass to your surviving spouse and your separate property will pass to your surviving spouse, per California Probate Code section 6401. This is a general rule.
Second, while a finalized Judgment in a dissolution of marriage will revoke a will, a mere separation or even filing for dissolution will not revoke a will, per California Probate Code section 6122. So, essentially, during the dissolution process, the parties remain married and have all the benefits provided to a spouse by law in the event of death, per California Probate Code section 78.
From these general rules, we can learn a lot. First, if you are married and want your share of the estate (one-half of the community property) and your separate property to pass to someone other than your spouse, you must have an estate plan in place. Further, if you are thinking of getting a divorce or in the divorce process, it is important to speak to an estate planning attorney about how you can protect your share of the estate (one-half of the community property) and your separate property until you get a Judgment. And, finally, the last lesson is to make sure to draft a new estate plan on the finalization of a divorce.
One major item to know, is that during the divorce process, while you cannot change much about how your property will be distributed, you can revoke or amend Power of Attorney or Advance Health Care Directives. You may have these documents in place, so be aware.
A good game plan at the end of the divorce process, in order to organize your estate, would be:
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