What Are the Best Defenses Against Felony Charges?

Any criminal offense carrying a prison sentence of at least two years is usually considered a felony, although this might vary by the state. Other types of crimes are classified as misdemeanors or petty crimes.

When you have been charged with a felony, you need a competent criminal defense attorney to help you fight the charges. After all, you do not want to spend years of your life behind bars. When you hire a competent lawyer, you will have the best chance of getting a non-guilty verdict, having the charges dropped, or receiving a lesser sentence.

After all, most prosecutors will be happy to win a guilty verdict, even if it means a lower payment of fine and a shorter prison sentence in a negotiated plea deal. To ensure you get the best possible outcome, take your time to find the best criminal defense attorney available. If you are wondering “what are the best defenses against felony charges,” keep reading to find out.

The Best Defenses for Felony Charges

1. Insanity

If you have been charged with a serious crime and the evidence against you is convincing, the best defense might be to claim insanity. The legal definition for insanity is not being in the right frame of mind when committing a crime. You will have to undergo medical assessment by a psychiatrist to prove that you were legally insane when you committed the crime. An insanity defense is commonly referred to as a mental disorder, and as you may already know, stress and depression are common types of mental disorders, so depending on your medical history, you might be able to easily use an insanity defense.

2. Necessity Defense

When the court rules that you have a case to answer for, you can claim that your actions were justified. Self-defense is the most common type of necessity defense. If you killed or hurt someone to prevent him or her from harming you or your family, a necessity defense could be successful. Similarly, if you stole a car to drive home to prevent a neighbor from harming another neighbor, a necessity defense might stand. A necessity defense can pass the test if the defendant is being charged with committing a lesser crime to stop a more serious crime from taking place.

3. Duress

If someone forced or compelled you to commit a crime, then you can use duress as your legal defense. After all, you did not commit the crime willingly. For instance, if your employer required you to do something that was a violation of securities law or you would get fired, you can use duress as a defense. In such a case, the prosecution may take you up as a prosecution witness to prosecute the bigger fish. In return, they may drop or reduce the charges against you.

4. Automatism

If you commit a felony as a result of an automatic muscular reflex that didn’t require conscious thought, you can use an automatism defense. For instance, if a person with post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) falls ill and suddenly attacks innocent bystanders, an automatism defense can be used to get him or her off the hook. However, this defense can only be used in a limited number of cases.

In Conclusion

Your lawyer can help you come up with the best defense for your case. When looking for the best criminal defense attorney in Sacramento, you should compare experiences and give special consideration to the most experienced attorney.

Dangerous Intersections in Orange County, CA

Defensive driving is regularly touted as a safe driving mechanism to help avoid accidents, and for good reason. Truth is, one of the best ways to evade accidents (as far as what is within your power) is to anticipate them and respond accordingly—a principle embodied in defensive driving techniques. Still, outside of defensive driving, an added component of vehicular accident avoidance is knowing where to find accident-prone trouble spots and taking extra precaution when traversing them.

If you live in and around the Orange County, CA area, then you are in luck. In today’s article, we highlight some of the most dangerous intersections in Orange County. Taking extra care when driving through these intersections can help ensure you do not become an Orange County accident statistic.

Top Three Most Dangerous Intersections in Orange County, CA

On average, the most dangerous intersections across Orange County average six or more collisions over the year. Still, even with the average, some intersections fair significantly worse than others. The three most dangerous ones include the following:

1. Beach Blvd

With an average of about fifteen collisions per year, the intersection between Beach Blvd and Chapman Ave in Stanton is one of the most notorious intersections in Orange County.

Although it has an average number of collisions per year is a few collisions shy of the intersection topping this list, Beach Blvd and Lampson Ave in Stanton is still one of the most dangerous in Orange County. Currently, the intersection averages around twelve collisions per year.

2. Alicia Pkwy

The intersection between Alicia Pkwy and Jeronimo Rd averages eleven collisions per year.

Following behind Alicia Pkwy and Jeronimo Rd is Alicia Pkwy and Muirlands Blvd. This intersection reports an average of about nine collisions per year.

3. Crown Valley

At approximately eight collisions per year, Crown Valley Pkwy and Cabot Rd is a far cry from the average of fifteen collisions reported by the most notorious intersection on this list. Still, this more than the average of around six collisions per year.

The intersection between Marguerite Pkwy and Crown Valley Pkwy rounds out our list also with an approximate average of eight collisions per year.

When All Else Fails, Contact an Orange County Accident Lawyer

Sometimes, despite our best efforts, we may find ourselves in an accident at some point as we commute around Orange County. In such instances, you will need a car accident lawyer in Orange County to help ensure that you are treated fairly in the aftermath. One motor vehicle collision is one too many, so your Orange County lawyer will work with you to ensure securing the most favorable outcome.

How Traffic Cops Can Tell You’re Using Your Phone While Driving

Getting caught texting and driving is not only a reckless thing to do, but it is also against the law in many states. Although it is very rare for someone to be pulled over just for that, it is a secondary defense a lot of the time. How exactly can a cop tell if someone is using their phone and texting? Here are a few ways they can end up figuring out what you are doing.

The first one is simple enough, and that is checking cell phone records after-the-fact. It is not a commonly used tactic in a lot of cases, simply because it is rather difficult to put it altogether. This is mostly going to be reserved for accidents that caused a major injury or death. It is a way for them to prove in the court of law that a person was driving while distracted. Getting records is one of the best ways how traffic cops can tell you’re using your phone while driving, because they can match up the time perfectly.

A much more common way cops can tell a person is texting comes down to their tendencies while driving. There are a lot of signs that a person is distracted by something, and most of the time, these days, it comes down to the phone. Things like staring at your own lap, hesitating at lights a little bit too long, or even weaving around on the road. All these types of actions show the cop that something is not exactly right. Maybe a person is under the influence of drugs, but whatever the case is, something needs to be done.

Some jurisdictions are coming up with clever ways to also spot texters on the road. Using tactics such as truckers who were elevated, spotters on an overpass, and even cops posing as homeless people begging for money. These are all ways that cops can really tell if a person is texting while they are driving. Sometimes people are just going to go home with a warning, but there might be times in the future where more and more citations are handed out this way. Some might think it is not exactly fair for them to do that, but if it is keeping the roads clear of those who are distracted, it might be for the best.

Finally, there are some companies who are working on tools that can help cops detect if a person is texting. While they are mostly in the developing stages right now, they could be used in the future to really combat this type of behavior.

Cops handing out tickets is frustrating for sure, but Long Island cell phone ticket attorney options are plentiful these days. No one should try to fight a ticket without using one. They can help get results in a short amount of time, exploring every possible way that it can end up getting dismissed. Check them out if you ever find yourself with a ticket.

How to Prove That Your Ex Is Not a Fit Parent

A child custody case can be a challenging ordeal for a lot of people. Perhaps the most challenging is trying to craft a case against the other parent to show that they are not fit to care for a child.

The first step to having success in a child custody case is to really know the laws in that particular jurisdiction. There are so many different laws around the United States that it can be difficult for some people to know them all, at first. There are a lot of tools out there for people who want to put themselves in the best light possible. Research is essential for any legal case, but when it comes down to the amount of time a person can see their child, it becomes mandatory.

Next, a parent should never really focus on only trashing the other parent. It can really provide a fairly poor look on people doing that. Not only is it not fair to the child, but also the judge is not going to be very happy either. Most people are going to go into a child custody hearing trying to seek sole custody. Though sometimes that is necessary, it just looks terrible for a parent to only focus on how bad the other one is.

Providing evidence that you are the better parent is the best way to go. Pointing out, not only that the physical well-being, but also the psychological well-being of a child is going to be very important in their future. The judge is going to look at all of these criteria when making the final decision, so painting yourself in the best picture possible is going to be the way to go.

Sole custody might seem like a better deal, but it is easier to go for joint custody. Some people might look at this as a loss, but it really should not be seen that way. Not only does it really benefit a child because they get a chance to see both, but it makes things go a little bit more smoothly for the most part. It is always going to be complicated if the two parents live far away, but it can be dealt with.

Whatever the case may be, it is important to learn how to prove that your ex is not a fit parent without completely trashing them. For more assistance on the legal side of things, a person can get in contact with a Pittsburgh family law attorney, or any other local option. It is the best way to get general advice in these situations that can be difficult to fully-understand. They deal with hundreds of similar cases like these and will know what to do.

What Counts as Medical Malpractice in Florida?

Also known as medical negligence, medical malpractice takes place when the negligence of a medical professional injures a patient. However, one should not assume that all instances of medical mishaps occur due to negligence. Find below a list of medical mistakes that are often the basis of medical malpractice lawsuits in the state of Florida, when they result due to negligence on the part of the medical professional.

  • Failure to treat a patient on time
  • Surgery performed on wrong parts of the body
  • Delayed diagnosis or even misdiagnosis
  • Preventable injury during birth
  • Foreign objects left inside the body of a patient after surgery
  • Improper medicine prescribed, and
  • Improper dosage of medicine administered

What Counts as Medical Malpractice in Florida?

To successfully claim for medical malpractice in Florida, you, the claimant, must prove certain elements. These elements are described in detail below.

Breaching Applicable Standard of Care

It is a legal requirement for all healthcare professionals to treat their patients carefully. Based on section 766.102 of the Florida Statutes, the definition of the prevailing care standards that the medical professional owes to his patient is the level of skill, care, and treatment that is recognized as appropriate and acceptable by what similarly situated and significantly prudent medical professionals would have performed under the circumstances. To breach these standards would be to show how the actions of the defendant deviated from the prevailing professional care standards.

Proximate Case

After this, the claimant must prove that the breach of the applicable care standards by the defendant was the proximate cause of his injury. In other words, it is the onus of the defendant to prove that the injuries that have suffered from would not have taken place had the defendant been careful instead of been negligent.

Compensable Damages

The most important factor is that the claimant must establish that the damages he has suffered are due to the negligence and malpractice of the defendant. To prove this, the claimant must provide evidence of the economic damages (also known as monetary amount) required to replace whatever had been lost, together with any applicable non-economic damages suffered, such as inconvenience, suffering, and pain.

Hire a Professional Lawyer

It might not be possible for you to perform all these tasks on your own, especially when you are unable to move around due to your medical condition. In such a scenario, hire the services of a professional medical malpractice lawyer in West Palm Beach.

The lawyer should have years of experience in successfully and aggressively dealing with such cases. He will fight your case to prove that your injuries are due to negligence or malpractice of the medical professional and provide you with the compensation you are legally entitled.

Austin’s Infamous Traffic Is a Health Hazard

It may or may not come as a surprise that Austin is basically one of the worst cities when it comes to traffic congestion. In fact, it is ranked thirteenth worst for traffic congestion in the United States and eighteenth in North America. However, this is not news to commuters as they are used to sitting in the rush hour traffic day in and day out. According to commuters, rush-hour traffic is at its worst in the evenings. Thursday evenings are reported to be the worst when more than sixty percent of the road is congested. So, what implications do traffic congestions have on the health of motorists?

It’s true that no one enjoys being stuck in traffic, however, thousands of people in Austin have to go through this on a daily basis. Traffic congestions affect more than just your mood; it affects your health as well. It also increases your blood pressure and increases air pollution levels.

Air pollution has been known to contribute to asthma, lung cancer, and various other respiratory diseases. In addition to that, it also increases risk for heart disease and stroke—conditions that are potentially fatal. According to reports, the amount of pollution that gathers inside your car during traffic jams far outweighs that found in moving vehicles.

In another study, it was found that hearing damage can occur by listening to daily traffic sounds. Another interesting fact is that rush-hour traffic sounds exceed ninety decibels. Therefore, it can be concluded that if you continue to sit in traffic congestion day in and day out, you run the risk of permanent hearing damage.

According to recent studies conducted by Texan cities, longer daily commutes lead to high blood pressure as well as a larger waistline. In addition, it can also lead to further problems that increase chances of chronic diseases. It is also true that people spend long times in commute are less active.

Blood pressure also appears to be more sensitive when it comes to commuting distance. For example, people who had a commute of twenty miles round-trip, had an increased risk of elevated blood pressure or hypertension.

Additionally, Austin roads are hazardous because the congestion leads to an increased number of accidents, especially during peak hours. Extended time in traffic jams and stand-stills is conducive to distracted driving, leading to more fender benders and reckless driving.

So, when you look at all the research and statistics pointing to the congestion on Austin roads, no one can deny it is a health hazard. The only question is how you can try and beat the traffic congestion. The short answer is that unless funding is given and infrastructure improved, there’s probably little that you can do with regard to the traffic situation since you have to use the roads.

However, you can try some things that can probably make the commute a bit easier on you. For example, if your employer offers flexible hours, try choosing shifts that start early in the morning and finish in the afternoons to avoid the rush hour traffic. If you haven’t tried it already, public transport could be a good solution. Sharing rides or starting lift clubs are a great way to decrease the number of vehicles on the road. If you are on the road in your vehicle, keep your windows closed as this would reduce your exposure to the loud noise and polluted air.

If you have implemented all of the above suggestions and you still find yourself in a sticky situation due to other drivers that don’t care to be considerate or cautious then you need to contact an Austin car crash lawyer, who will assist you further.

When Can You Sue for a Construction Accident?

The Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) has established safety standards that a construction site must adhere to for the construction workers to be safe. However, construction sites still regularly report numerous serious accidents that lead to permanent or life-long injuries, such as broken hip bones, lost limbs, paralysis, and other injuries that could require an employee to undergo a surgical procedure. The law mandates that any worker who sustains an injury due to construction activities be compensated accordingly.

Many construction-related injuries resulting from negligence qualify for compensation for pain, suffering, and lost wages. A construction worker may sue the negligent party responsible for the injuries and seek compensation through a personal injury claim. However, in many cases where a worker is injured on the job, the victim may not sue his or her employer for negligence. Instead, the law provides workers compensation benefits.

What Is Workers Compensation?

Employees are not expected to sue their employers for on-the-job injuries since there is workers compensation coverage for this purpose.

Workers compensation provides employees with medical benefits and lost wages when they can no longer work due to a workplace injury. When an employer has this coverage, it is illegal to sue the employer for compensation.

What Are Third-Party Claims?

In addition to workers compensation, there is something called a third-party claim. While the law does not normally allow employees to sue their employers for injury compensation, it does allow claims to be brought against other parties who were responsible for the accident.

Such personal injury claims may be awarded in addition to the benefits obtained through workers compensation. For example, a motorist might cause an accident that results in an accident that leaves you injured on the job. In this case, you may sue the driver for compensation. In another example, if you operate faulty equipment or machinery that causes serious injuries, you may claim compensation from the manufacturer of the machinery.

Common Situations Resulting in Injury Claims

Not all construction accidents require a third-party claim. Therefore, every accident is treated on its own merits, and much depends on the number and the role of the parties involved. Understanding how each of the parties may have been responsible often requires an experienced St. Louis personal injury attorney.

Steps to Take After a Construction Injury

Whether you want to file a claim for workers compensation or file a personal injury claim against a third party, you must follow certain steps:

Call Emergency Services

The first thing to do is report the injuries to your employer through a notice.

Document the Accident

Like all personal injury cases, you need to document both the scene of the accident and the event to increase the odds of winning your claim. Record information about the accident, including witness statements and anything that bystanders witnessed.

Complete Workers Compensation Paperwork

You must observe the deadlines that apply to the claim. Remember that the clock begins ticking immediately following the accident. Missing the deadline can jeopardize your chances of obtaining compensation. Working with a workers compensation lawyer can help you win your claim.

File a Personal Injury Claim

Finally, you may initiate a claim against any responsible third parties outside of your employer. You will need an experienced personal injury attorney to help you navigate the process.

The Importance of Hiring a Personal Injury Attorney

Knowing exactly what steps to take in the event of a work-related accident can be complicated. This is a tricky process that requires legal knowledge. Trying this yourself can be overwhelming. Your lawyer can help you weigh your legal options and get the most compensation possible.

Everything You Need to Know About Virginia Car Accident Laws

If you are a Virginia resident or are visiting the state, you should familiarize yourself with the laws of the land. Every state has its legal code as well as laws that must be adhered to by everyone who lives in the state or is visiting it. Everything you need to know about Virginia car accident laws can be brought down to a few very specific obligations:

Liability Insurance

If a driver does not have liability insurance, then they must pay the DMV a five-hundred dollar “uninsured motor vehicle fee.”

Reporting an Accident

If you have been in a car accident, do not leave the scene of the accident for any reason. Once you have overcome the initial shock of being in an accident you are obligated to report the accident.

The Virginia car accident laws state that in an accident that has injured or killed someone, or if another vehicle or property has been damaged, you must report it. You will be expected to offer all the necessary information such as your name, address, driver’s license, and vehicle registration.

Assign Fault

Virginia is a ‘fault’ car accident state. This means that the person at-fault, accordingly to the insurance carrier, will be responsible for the damages caused by the car crash. This also means that it is crucial to identify which driver was at fault.

Statute of Limitations

The state of Virginia has a statute of limitations about the lawsuits you can file in court. When it comes to injuries suffered in a car accident, you have a period of exactly two years from the date of the accident to file your lawsuit. For cases pertaining to damage caused to your car or other property, the time limit is set at five years.

Finally, the statute of limitations for a wrongful death lawsuit in the case of a car accident is two years. Do remember that the time period is calculated from the exact date of the accident, and not when the insurance claim was filed.  

While most Virginia residents may know the traffic laws in their state, they may not understand how to deal with the legal ramifications of a car accident, which is why it is recommended that you consult an experienced and reliable car accident lawyer in Richmond, VA.

Your attorney will discuss the details of your case, collect the required information, and help you understand the legal options before you. It is crucial that you make informed and educated legal choices that will protect you and ensure that you receive appropriate compensation.

Things to Know About “Wet Reckless” Plea Bargains

According to the Department of Motor Vehicles, thousands of accidents and injuries are reported every year due to drunk driving. Because of the severity of the accidents due to drunk driving, DUI cases are very serious offenses in the US and a defendant risks going to jail, having his driving license revoked, and having an interlock ignition device installed on his or her vehicle. Here are some of the things you want to know about “Wet Reckless” Plea bargains when faced with DUI charges.  

What Does “Wet Reckless” Mean?

There is no such crime known as “wet reckless.” Instead, it is term that is used to describe a plea bargain offered to a first-time DUI offender. If offered, you will be expected to plead guilty to reckless driving instead of being charged with a DUI.

Who Qualifies for a “Wet Reckless” Plea Bargain?

One way that you may reduce the severity of the charges is by having a prosecutor offer you a “wet reckless” plea bargain. However, since the law in almost all the states is strict, only a few people are eligible for plea bargains following a DUI charge.

For one to qualify for a plea, he or she must be a first-time offender, you must not have caused fatalities, and your BAC level at the time of arrest should not be very high.

Every state in the US considers driving under the influence (DUI) very serious, which is why there are such harsh penalties for the crime. If you are facing a DUI charge, your criminal lawyer may negotiate for a reduction of the charges from DUI to “wet reckless.”

What Happens After Accepting a “Wet Reckless” Plea Bargain?

Upon accepting a “wet reckless” plea bargain, you will be charged and convicted of reckless driving instead. The good news is that reckless driving is a far less serious charge than a DUI, so it carries less serious penalties. Some of the consequences for accepting the charge may include serving a short jail term, a fine, revocation of a license, and an enrollment in an alcohol education course. You also should expect your insurance rate to go up and points to be added against your driving license.

Should I Accept a “Wet Reckless” Plea Bargain?

Every DUI case has its uniqueness, so there is no universal answer to this question since each case will be considered on its own merits. It is advisable not to accept or reject a plea deal before talking to a criminal defense attorney. A competent and experienced defense attorney will check the facts and review the evidence before determining if the plea deal is the best option for you. If the attorney strongly believes that you have higher chances of being acquitted after trial, he may advise you not to take the plea.

If you are arrested and facing first-time DUI charges, seek help from a reputable Tampa DUI lawyer right away. An attorney will work tirelessly to protect your rights.

Dallas Auto Accidents: By the Numbers

When you’re driving through Dallas, you might be a little concerned about having an accident. What are your chances of being hit by a careless driver, and what can you do about it when it happens? While you will have options to get compensation if you’re injured by another driver, what are the chances of being involved in an accident in the first place?

Dallas, like many cities, is a high-traffic area, which means that accidents happen regularly. However, when you know what to expect from an auto accident, you’ll have a better idea of what to do to fight for your compensation.

Crashes Are Expensive

Unfortunately, crashes are generally expensive, and those costs add up over time. In Texas, the costs of motor vehicle accidents tallied to around $38.4 million over the course of 2017. As one of Texas’s biggest cities, Dallas made up a large percentage of those accidents and their associated costs.

Keep in mind, not every accident may be expensive, but your damages could be worth more than you think. For example, your non-economic damages are intangible and more difficult to calculate. You may need a lawyer like those at Crain Lewis Brogdon, LLP to deal with those damages (like pain and suffering or psychological damage) and help you get the full compensation you deserve.

Urban Areas Have More Accidents

Because Dallas is a large metropolitan area, an accident is more likely than it would be in a less urban area. Compared to smaller areas, Dallas has thousands of accidents per year. While many of these crashes are non-fatal or even non-serious, it can be a major headache for you.

Fortunately, though, Dallas wrecks, as well as accidents in other urban areas, tend to be less fatal. This is simply because you’re generally closer to hospitals and other places that can offer medical care; even a serious accident is more survivable.

Act After an Auto Crash

A crash in Dallas can be a traumatic, expensive ordeal—leaving you struggling to get the full compensation you need to recover from your accident. Fortunately, while the number of accidents and the costs may be disheartening, you have a chance to recover fully from a Dallas crash.

If you’ve been hit by a careless driver, you may be eligible for compensation from the responsible party. They should cover the costs of your losses, since you didn’t cause the accident.

If your accident has you overwhelmed, reach out for the help you need with your recovery. Your Texas car accident can leave you stressed, but you should have an opportunity to recover and get the full compensation you deserve.