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Opelika Alabama Legal Blog

Even in Alabama, icy roads can present sliding hazards

Living in Alabama over the years may not have presented you with many opportunities to build snowmen or enjoy other snow-related activities. However, even in this southern state, winter weather can cause safety issues, especially when out on the road. Snow does not have to accumulate for roadways to become treacherous.

Freezing temperatures still affect many areas of the state, and if any moisture has accumulated, it is possible for ice to form on the road. Bridges, highways ramps, and shady areas may ice over first and remain icy for longer than other portions of the road. Still, any area could become icy. As a driver, you need to remain conscious of your safety and the safety of others around you.

Family law: Do I need a new financial adviser after divorce?

Filing for divorce is about more than ending a romantic relationship. Alabama couples usually want a clean break physically, emotionally, and financially, which gives both parties the room to grow in their new, post-divorce lives. However, some couples may have a few connecting ties that they still need to sever before they can truly put this family law issue behind.

Aside from the typical things that most couples share -- a home, property, investments, and more -- many also share professional services. It makes sense for married couples to use the same financial adviser and accountant. However, it no longer makes sense to continue using shared professionals after a divorce. In many cases, securing the services of new financial professionals before the divorce is finalized is an even better idea.

Criminal law: Utah lowers legal BAC to .05 percent

Drunk driving charges are a serious matter that can permanently alter the course of a person's future. In Alabama, a driver aged 21 or older can face criminal law charges if their blood-alcohol content is .08 percent or more. Hoping to lower the number of alcohol-related fatalities, another state is now lowering its legal BAC.

In 2017, Utah had the fewest number of people die in alcohol-related collisions. Still, with a nationwide average of 11,000 deaths -- that is 25 percent of nationwide vehicle deaths -- accounting for about 29 deaths a day, having the fewest number of deaths might not mean much. In an effort to further reduce these numbers, Utah enacted a new law on Dec. 30, 2018. Now, Utah's legal limit for driving is a .05 BAC.

Personal injury: Inexperience cause many road accidents

For motorists to navigate the Alabama roads safely at this time of the year requires experience. Unfortunately, experience is something Opelika teenage drivers do not have, making them exceptionally vulnerable. Many personal injury lawsuits follow auto accidents that were caused by errors made by inexperienced teenage drivers. The best way for young drivers to gain experience is to have a parent or guardian to ride with them and monitor their progress.

Some parents seem to think that their teenage children are responsible and intelligent, but although those attributes are beneficial, nothing can replace experience. Experienced drivers can help their children by being with them in as many different scenarios as possible. Driving in poorly lit areas at night, in rainstorms or other adverse weather, in heavy traffic and other situations can teach teens how to adjust their driving to the circumstances.

Understanding one's criminal law rights can be vital

Violent crimes happen every day. People are arrested and charged with those crimes, and it may become a story in the local or even national media. For the person charged with a crime, it is much more than media. The charges have an immediate impact on one's life, and it is crucial that the accused individual understand his or her rights under the criminal law to the proceedings.

Recently, a man was found dead in a Foley apartment complex. The deceased had reportedly been stabbed multiple times. In the course of the investigation, the police reported that the deceased's SUV was missing. It was later recovered after having been abandoned on a highway.

Understanding drug trafficking charges may help your defense

Certain situations in life may seem never-ending or as if the repercussions will follow you for the rest of your life. In some instances, this feeling may just be in your head, such as replaying a bad date or a regrettable choice of words over and over. However, other predicaments, like having felony drug charges brought against you, are serious and can affect your life for a considerable amount of time.

If you do face felony charges for a crime like drug trafficking, you will undoubtedly want to make sure that your side of the story is heard by the necessary parties. As part of your criminal defense presentation, you may have the ability to give a reason why these charges should not apply or work toward less negative outcomes.

Doctor, others charged with criminal law violations

An Alabama doctor was recently indicted on 103 different criminal counts. The alleged criminal law violations include accusations that he improperly dispensed controlled substances. Two others -- a pharmacist and a pharmaceutical sales representative -- were also indicted on related charges.

The 46-year-old doctor allegedly conspired with the pharmacist, drug sales rep, and members of his staff to commit health care fraud. Investigators believe that the doctor had his officer manager or X-ray technician meet with his patients who suffered from opiod addiction, and then billed the insurance company, claiming that he had actually conducted the examination. This was also apparently related to his charges for administering controlled substances to patients who did not have a medical need for them, such as Adderall for patients with attention deficit disorders and oxycodone for patients with addictions.

Should baby boomers consider using this family law tool?

After divorce, some people in Alabama feel as if they will never be ready to marry again. However these feelings often fade, and many people go on to find a new love and remarry. This is not always a stress-free process though, especially for baby boomers who may have a few extra family law worries on their plate.

By the time people begin to hit 50, 60 and even 70 years old, many have accumulated a significant amount of assets. Even if a person's home, motor vehicle and retirement assets do not exactly make them rich -- particularly if these assets were already divided in a past divorce -- protecting them is still important. This is where the prenuptial agreement comes into play. Baby boomers who are close to or are already in retirement can outline all of their separate property in a prenup, ensuring that it is kept out of property division should their subsequent marriage end in divorce.

Addressing financial burdens through a wrongful death claim

Unexpectedly losing a loved one is devastating for a family. What you might not have realized before is that most Alabama families are not only left behind to grieve, but also to shoulder the burden of related financial damages. Although no amount of money can undo what has already occurred, successfully pursuing a wrongful death claim can help you handle any unexpected costs.

Paying for a funeral is often much more expensive than most families expect, but these enormous costs are just one of many burdens you may be facing. There could be medical bills from attempts at life-saving care or other related bills as well. You could also be dealing with the loss of certain benefits, your family's breadwinner or a significant contributor to the finances.

Holiday shopping may put you at risk of slip-and-fall injuries

With the holiday season fast approaching and the likely need to buy gifts for loved ones, you may want to get started on your holiday shopping. Whether you enjoy getting out to bustling shops to find the right gift or if you dread crowds and want finish as quickly as possible, you may be unable to avoid going to physical stores, even if you are an avid online shopper.

While getting out and about can be enjoyable, you may also face several safety risks while on the premises of certain businesses. Unfortunately, you could easily fall outside or inside a store due to an owner's lack of attention to potential hazards.

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