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Effects of Drunken Driving Charges

It has always been said, advertised and taught even to those still applying for a license, that drinking and driving are a dangerous combination. The many lives that drunken drivers put at risk give the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) all the reasons to be aggressive in catching and charging drivers with a driving under the influence (DUI) or driving while intoxicated (DWI) offense.

DUI/DWI is a major traffic violation in all US states. Thus, despite the low 0.08% blood alcohol concentration (BAC) limit level, the NHTSA still moves to lower it to 0.05%, as different studies have clearly shown that even this level is enough to impair a person, reducing his/her capability to react on time in the event of emergency road situations.

The penalties for a DUI/DWI conviction can include large fines, time in jail, community service, compulsory attendance in a DUI class and/or suspension or revocation of driver’s license. And, depending on the severity or frequency of the offense, the court has the authority to require the installation of an Interlock Ignition Device (IID) inside the offender’s vehicle. Much like a breath analyzer, the IID is designed to detect the BAC level of the driver; it will not allow the vehicle to start if the BAC level detected exceeds the device’s programmed limit (which is much lower than 0.08%).

Another requirement the court may make is the application for an SR-22 form, which is actually a Certificate of Financial Responsibility (CFR) form, which will prove that the driver (required of it) carries car liability insurance coverage. An SR-22 lasts for three years; it also requires higher premiums for car liability insurance.

The consequences of a DUI/DWI conviction extend beyond the court room. It can affect one’s employment, dreams of traveling abroad, fight for child custody, renting an apartment, application for a professional license, and many other things. These are some of the major reasons why some of those who have been charged of the offense look for all possible means to save themselves from being convicted, even erasing the record of charge under their name, if possible.

Hiring very competent lawyers, such as a Dallas DWI lawyer, is the first step necessary for that high possibility of getting an acquittal instead of a conviction. Being a serious offense, one should only look these experienced and determined legal professionals, who will always be prepared with a strong and convincing defense. Essentially, with the help of an experienced DUI attorney, your case’s chances of success will be much higher than if you went alone.

EEOC – Protecting Employees against Workplace Retaliation...

The Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) and the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) are two of the many federal decrees that protect employees and job applicants in the US from wrongful termination, unjust compensation, and any form of discrimination, harassment, coercion, threats and intimidation in the workplace. Another protection that EEOC provides, which many employees and applicants may not be aware of, is protection against retaliation, which many have experienced and suffered from.

Retaliation involves any form of adverse activity that an employment agency or an employer may resort to that is directed against an employee or a job applicant who takes part in activities that are protected under the law. For better understanding, clarifying the meaning of adverse acts and legally protected activities should be necessary:

adverse acts – these refer to actions that can hinder any individual in the workplace from opposing discriminatory employment practices or from participating in proceedings that can expose employment discrimination. These may be accomplished through refusal to hire, filing of (or threats of filing) criminal or civil charges against anyone who would oppose or expose unjust employment practices, unjust negative evaluation or character referencing, and so forth; while,

legally protected activities – refer to actions that will help prove and expose harassment and/or discriminatory practices. Specifically, these actions include, but are not limited to:

  • Witnessing in a legal proceeding or in an EEOC investigation
  • Manifesting one’s intention to file a discrimination charge or actually filing an employment discrimination case
  • Joining employee protests/pickets aimed at stopping workplace discrimination
  • Refusing to follow any order (from a superior) that is honestly believed as discriminatory

Some retaliatory acts may be out rightly obvious, like a demotion, salary reduction, being laid off or being denied a promotion or salary increase; there are those, however, that are subtle and are, thus, not quite obvious, such as job relocation or sudden change in work schedule, which can be a major factor in limiting an employee’s flexibility or which can greatly affect a parent-employee’s time with his/her children.

Employment discrimination is not easy to prove and while an employee may have enough, valid reasons and proofs that will authenticate his/her claim, the employer will surely have his/her own attorney who would be prepared with counter arguments and ways of deposing the complainant and his/her witnesses.

Seeking the help of exceptionally competent lawyers, like New York City discrimination lawyers, would be useful in exposing workplace discrimination where it exists. As experienced legal experts, they will also be able to effectively represent and fight for the rights of aggrieved employees.

The Challenges of a Dog-Walking Job

Some types of professions require a license to be practiced, since a license is a proof that a person has undergone formal and proper education and training needed for the effective performance of the intended work. There is a license for medical practitioners, accountants, lawyers, commercial vehicle drivers and, of course, dog walkers – one of the new group of experts in town.

As a dog walker, you can be your own boss; and your office – nature’s vastness: streets, parks, or wherever there is space. Surprisingly, many dog walkers today were former professionals in other fields. One or a couple of them could have been former lawyers, computer programmers, accountants, nurses, writers, ex-military personnel or sales representatives.

To be able to join the dog-walking profession, one needs to undergo professional training and have comprehensive knowledge on canine first aid, dog behavior and body language, trail etiquette, pack management, and an effective marketing strategy that will earn clients. Prior to all these, however, the foremost requirement is love of dogs.

Dogs are very energetic pets, thus, it is important that they get to spend their energy on exercise and playful activities or these may end up resorting to unpleasant and, sometimes, harmful behavior, like harmful playful moves or rough play, play biting, constant whining, barking and scratching, destructive chewing, jumping up on people and so forth.

Part of a dog’s daily regimen is a walking or running exercise. For this, a dog walker also needs to have great stamina and, not to forget, patience, for the job sometimes requires bathing dogs, especially when it rains during a scheduled walk: a dog can definitely end up soaked in mud. This also means dirty towels and plenty of dog hair.

Entrusting your pet/s’ exercise to a highly-skilled dog walker, like an Austin dog walker, is necessary if you do not have time to see to it yourself. This will ensure that your pet is healthy and happy.

Medical Risks: Zoloft and Cerebral Palsy

Of the 2.4 billion prescriptions written by doctors every year, the National Center for Health Statistics (NCHS)states that about 118 million are for antidepressant drugs, making these the third most prescribed type of medication in the US. NCHS records also show that between 1988–1994 and 2005–2008, use of antidepressants increased by almost 400 percent.

Psychiatrists, of course, agree that antidepressants can be prescribed to people with severe illnesses or severe cases of depression, but definitely not to those suffering only from mild attacks. And, along this line, one major concern is that many of the doctors who have prescribed antidepressants are not psychiatrists. The World Health Organization’s Department of Mental Health and Substance Abuse expresses concern over the fact that a lot of Americans, who should not be using the drug, are getting the prescriptions anyway, but not as a solution to stress, anxiety or sadness.

It appears that many doctors have been prescribing antidepressants to people for off-label use, that is, use not approved for by the US Food and Drug Administration. These include off-label treatment of insomnia, pain, headache and premenstrual dysphoric disorder (PMDD), which is due to Premenstrual Syndrome (PMS); some doctors even recommend antidepressants to help people quit smoking.

One specific antidepressant that has been written on about 30 million prescriptions was Zoloft (sertraline chloride), which was introduced by Pfizer in 1990. Zoloft was originally manufactured for those in the United Kingdom, where it was given the brand name Lustral. Seen as more effective and with fewer side effects, Pfizer developed it and introduced it in the US market, where it eventually dislodged Prozac at the top of the antidepressants chart.

Zoloft comes from SSRIs (selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors) family of antidepressant drugs. SSRIs, which control the level of serotonin in the brain and which affect an individual’s learning, sleeping and mood patterns, have been prescribed to patients to control their mental illnesses, such as depression. Specifically, the drug has been used as a treatment for major depressive disorders (MDD), as well as for panic disorder, social anxiety disorder, obsessive-compulsive disorder (OCD), premenstrual dysphoric disorder (PMDD) and post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD).

Side-effects, however, both minor and severe, began to be linked to Zoloft over the past years. And while there are concerns of prescribing the drug to people with liver or kidney ailments, who also suffer from mania, suicidal thoughts or seizures, the greatest concern is giving the drug to pregnant women or those expecting (or planning) to becoming pregnant soon.

Some of the milder side-effects of Zoloft include sleepiness or insomnia, headache, suicidal thoughts, restlessness, diarrhea, nausea, dizziness, sexual dysfunction and dry mouth. The severe ones, though, can include: serious birth defects; withdrawal symptoms in babies following birth; persistent pulmonary hypertension of the newborn (PPHN), which can be fatal; the possibility of the baby being born with a heart defect; anencephaly, a fatal condition wherein a large portion of the skull and brain fail to develop; facial malformations, like cleft palate or cleft lip; and Omphalocele a condition wherein abdominal organs, like the liver and the intestines, develop outside of the abdomen.

As of June 2014, at least 250 Zoloft birth defect lawsuits have been filed in a federal court in Philadelphia alone. Zoloft lawyers still anticipate a possible surge in the number of birth defects involving Zoloft, which openly advertised the product for use by pregnant women, despite already being linked to serious birth defects.

Birth defects and other forms of medical errors are almost always due to the grave negligence of certain individuals, like manufacturers, doctors, healthcare personnel, and others. Acts of negligence can result to wrong prescription, misdiagnosis, surgical errors, injecting wrong dose of anesthesia, birth defects and to so many more.

Another serious birth defect that can be due to negligence is cerebral palsy, the loss of motor function in, or impairment in the muscle coordination of, children due to abnormality in the development of the brain. This injury, which greatly affects a child’s ability to walk, play, talk, eat, etc., can be sustained by a child while inside the womb, during birth or soon after birth.

Because of medical mistakes thousands of children end up with birth defects (including cerebral palsy) every year. Doctors’ failure to provide proper care, especially to pregnant women and those planning on becoming pregnant soon, can very well be the cause of a Zoloft prescription or inability to detect a problem in a pregnant woman’s or an unborn child’s health condition.

Besides Zoloft lawyers, there are cerebral palsy lawyers who can represent both mother and child in a medical malpractice lawsuit that will attempt to show that acts of negligence are the causes of birth defects. Victims of birth defects due to negligence are protected and allowed by the law to receive proper compensation from the liable party.

The Risk of Foreclosure During Probate

In the event of death or a serious illness, such as mental incapacity, a person would always want to make sure that his/her family is never left in a financial crisis; however, if he/she owns assets and/or properties (whether such asset/property is under his/her name alone or co-owned with someone else, a case called “tenant in common”), then a probate proceeding must be made.

A probate is a court proceeding wherein the validity of a deceased person’s Will is verified; it is also a means for the probate court to make sure all outstanding loans of the deceased person or testator (the person who made the Will) are settled and that whatever amount remains are distributed to all heirs in accordance to what is stipulated in the testator’s Will.

So many probate proceedings in the past have caused so much stress and division among family members, due to disputes by heirs who contest a Will, either because they feel that they have been denied of fair treatment or that the estate is not being correctly handled.

To avoid divisions from worsening, as well as to help ensure the proper handling of the estate, it is necessary to seek the help of a third party, particularly legal professionals, such as Chicago probate lawyers, who can work to deal with your concerns professionally and within the boundaries of the law.

There are cases, however, when the deceased has only one property to leave, like a home, but it is still mortgaged and its value has become less than the amount owed on the mortgage. Regardless of value, the deceased testator’s representative must continue to make timely payments on the mortgage as failure to do so can result to loss of property through foreclosure.

Besides failure to pay the mortgage, a foreclosure may also be due to the deceased representative’s assumption that payment of the mortgage may be suspended during administration of the estate or that payments to the mortgage are already waived due to the decedent’s death: these mistakes often happen if the chosen representative is not a lawyer and has not sought the assistance of one.

Preventing an estate property from being foreclosed is possible, though, by making sure that all secured loans are kept current. The representative may otherwise inform the lender, through writing, of the decedent’s death and his/her intents on the property; whether it will be distributed to the heirs or sold instead. Cedar Rapids foreclosure defense lawyers would be good help for the family of the deceased on this concern, especially if the lender pursues with a foreclosure without properly issuing notice to the representative.