General Article

Hiring a Family Lawyer Can Help You Get a Fair Child Custody Arrangement

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When couples divorce, one of the most tragic results is the separation of the family. Suddenly, child custody becomes a concern and each parent fears that a divorce means losing parenting rights and the ability to maintain a presence in the child’s life. While this is rarely the case, it’s still important to ensure a legal advocate is representing your interests.

In many custody battles, each parent’s goal is to obtain sole custody of the child, but, unless there are extreme circumstances, the courts try to keep families together as much as possible. The goal of the family court system is to do what’s best for the children, but, as a secondary goal, they also try to ensure each parent has the ability to participate in the child’s upbringing.

While the courts try to be fair, they can only rely upon the evidence and testimony provided by each party and their lawyers. Your ex-partner may paint an unflattering picture of you and, without an attorney counteracting those charges, you may only end up with an allowance for child visitation Hillsborough County. Your own attorney will combat unfair allegations and ensure the judge hears two sides of the story.

In some cases, a divorcing husband and wife may be able to settle issues of custody in mediation. This is a less costly and faster process, but it requires the ability to set aside your differences and compromise. Even in these situations, hiring a lawyer can help keep the mediation process fair and civil. There are many intense emotions involved, when ex-partners try to divide their lives, so rational and logical attorneys can help both parties keep things in perspective.

Each parent wants to ensure he, or she, maintains a presence in their child’s life. Lawyers can help parents work together and show the judge that they can compromise, which makes it more likely that the parents will be able to share custody. Ideally, shared custody allows parents to divorce without unnecessarily disrupting the child’s life. Hiring an attorney may seem counterproductive to creating a positive situation for the child, but, in most cases, it’s the only way to ensure a smooth and fair transition for all involved.

General Article

UK Fire Safety Laws

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All the fire safety legislation in England and Wales comes under “The Regulatory Reform (Fire Safety) Order 2005.” This legislation was enacted in 2006 to simplify the existing legal requirements in the country. All business premises in England and Wales are covered under these regulations. In fact, every business owner or manager should designate a “Responsible Person” (RP) to see that all precautions are taken both to prevent fires as well as injury and death in case of a fire emergency. Since there are more than 20,000 commercial fires every year in the United Kingdom, the RP should take his job seriously and use professional fire safety methods to safeguard the business premises as well as the employees from a fire hazard in the future. This article provides information on the UK fire safety laws.

Fire Risk Assessment

All commercial establishments in the country should conduct a fire risk assessment – which is mandatory by the newly enacted law. It is the first thing that you need to do in order to protect your organization from a fire emergency in the future. On the other hand, the RP should maintain a Fire Safety Log Book to minimize the risk of a fire on their premises. In fact, the fire safety assessment and the fire safety log book are the first things that the fire inspecting authorities will check when they inspect your premises. If these are not in order, your organization is in for some serious trouble with the authorities.

Your fire risk assessment should be written down if your organization employs more than 5 employees. But it is better to document the assessment for easy reference during an inspection by the fire inspecting authorities. The fire risk assessment of your premises must:

  • Be documented if you employ more than five employees.
  • Be reviewed on a regular basis.
  • Record the main findings and the necessary actions to be taken in order to prevent the risk of a sudden fire.
  • Indicate whether the premises requires a license due to notices issued by the fire brigade saying that you should do so.

In fact, you don’t have to use the service of a professional fire risk assessor in case you don’t want to do so. But the RP needs to be confident that he could:

  • Accurately identify the potential causes of fire on your premises.
  • Identify the employees at risk.
  • Assess the suitability of the fire safety techniques in place in the organization such as the escape routes and fire alarms.
  • Record all the important findings if you employ more than 5 employees.
  • Develop an effective fire safety action plan if certain changes are required to the original plan.
  • Implement the action plan if required.
  • Train staff and conduct regular fire drills in the organization.
  • Keep the fire risk assessment updated on an ongoing basis.

In case you don’t maintain a suitable Fire Risk Assessment and fire safety precautions, your organization could be prosecuted with several fines. If extreme negligence is proven, the result would be a prison term. That is why you need to take these regulations seriously and prepare the premises to protect your employees and goods during an emergency fire.

The fire safety laws in the UK reiterates that you should provide appropriate fire-fighting equipment to safeguard the premises during an emergency fire situation. This would mean portable fire extinguishers, sprinklers, and hose reels. In fact, a restaurant is considered a high-risk business under this law. On the other hand, any other business that needs to store chemicals and flammable materials would be considered high-risk businesses in this regard.

Fire safety signs are very important in this regard. Fire signs are mostly overlooked by businesses due to negligence. All businesses will require at least two fire safety signs such as an Extinguisher ID sign and a Fire Action Notice. Fire system alarms may not be necessary if you operate out of a small premise. But high-risk businesses should have fire system alarms properly place on their premises. On the other hand, emergency lighting is another concern in buildings for the purpose of proving light in case the normal lights fail during a fire.

The aforementioned article provides information on the UK fire safety laws.

Attorney At Law

About the UK Solicitors Regulation Authority

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Simply known as the SRA, the U.K. Solicitors Authority is a regulatory body of solicitors in Wales and England.

Headquartered in Birmingham, the SRA is saddled with the responsibility of regulating the conduct of over 125,000 solicitors and other professional individuals at public and private sector organizations in over 11,000 firms. It has Paul Philip as the Chief Executive.

The SRA was established in 2007 and serves as an independent regulatory body for solicitors in the region of England and Wales. It has an office located in London.

It formally existed as an arm of the UK’s Law Society, which is still the body representing solicitors. However, the SRA was created statutorily and now operates independently.

The body came into existence after former executive of the Bank of England and the executive chairman of BBC, Sir David Clementi, suggested that bodies of professionals holding representative and regulatory responsibilities should have their roles separated. The UK government adopted his idea and the SRA was formed.

Who are solicitors?

Solicitors are lawyers who provide expert legal advice to as well as supports to clients. Once they become qualified for the role, they can specialize in legal areas such as litigation, family, tax or property.

They conduct specific legal activities such as:

  • Advocacy
  • Probate
  • Litigation
  • Notary
  • Conveyancing
  • Oath administration

Differences between solicitors and barristers

In England and Wales, there are two types of lawyers- solicitors and barristers. It is a distinction of a historical nature that has its supporters and its detractors, so that, from time to time, voices emerge calling that it should disappear. So far, the critics have not managed to merge these two professions. However, in recent years, some changes have been introduced that have greatly reduced the differences that existed between them. The loss of the monopolies of the solicitors (for example, in the matter of transfer of property) and of the barristers (in the right of hearing before higher courts) has blurred the dividing line between these two types of lawyers.

What are the functions of the barrister?

The barristers defend the interests of their clients in court proceedings before the courts. They are also responsible for drafting the main procedural documents (the so-called statements of case: the complaint, the answer, etc.). Until the entry into force of the Courts and Legal Services 1990, they were the only ones that could exercise before the superior courts or senior courts. At present, the solicitors can also access these functions, although they must have a certificate that gives them additional rights of hearing (Higher Rights of Audience) granted by the Solicitors Regulation Authority.

Can you hire a barrister directly?

Before the nineties of the last century, the barristers could only be hired by “professional clients”. However, during the 1990s, the Bar Council – the governing body of the barristers at that time – implemented a pilot program called BarDIRECT to allow certain professionals and organizations (unions, police forces, etc.) to contract barristers directly. In this way, a process was initiated to liberalize access to this type of lawyers that culminated in 2004. On that date, the Bar Council adopted a series of rules known as the “Public Access scheme” that allow the public to contract the barristers without intermediaries.

How are the barristers organized?

The representative body of the barristers is the Bar Council (The General Council of the Bar of England and Wales), which formerly was also its regulatory authority. In 2006, these two functions were separated to avoid conflicts of interest between them. After all, it is difficult to protect the interests of the general public and, at the same time, the corporate interests of lawyers. For this reason, the body responsible for regulating the profession is now the Bar Standards Board (BSB), which is integrated into the Bar Council, but acts independently.

The barristers are obliged to comply with the BSB code of conduct and to pay for the practicing certificate (PC) that it issues, if they wish to exercise.

What are the functions of the SRA?

The SRA is responsible for regulating thousands of authorized professionals, solicitors and their firms in their regions of legal jurisdiction – England and in Wales. The North Ireland and Scotland are separate regions of jurisdiction as these countries also have their regulatory bodies. Apart from the SRA, there are many other bodies which regulate legal services in England and in Wales. The Bar Standard Board (BSB) regulates barristers. Some of the other regulatory bodies are: Notaries, CILEx, Council of Licensed Conveyancers and many others.

The SRA ensures that all legal services achieve regulatory outcomes such as:

  • Promoting and protecting the interest of the public.
  • Promoting and protecting the best interest of the clients.
    Promoting healthy competition for legal services.
  • Encouraging diverse, effective, strong and independent legal profession.
  • Supporting the constitutional rights of the people.
  • Increasing citizens’ understanding of their duties and legal rights.
  • Observing the courts’ best interests.
  • Promoting the right work standards.
    Promotin adherence to principles of integrity and independence.
  • Maintaining clients’ confidentiality

The responsibilities of the SRA

  • Maintaining the code of ethics for professionals and the Solicitors’ Handbook.
  • Authorizing and giving licenses to solicitors and their firms.
  • Supervising professionals and their firms.
  • Enforcing actions against the violators of the regulatory body’s codes through the
    solicitors’ tribunal.

As a matter of fact, the supervisory function of the SRA handled 6,289 cases in 2012. It also closed down firms in a total of 37 interventions because they posed risks to their clients. Acting on referrals to the tribunal, a total of 77 strikes-off, 56 suspensions, and 94 fines were made during this period, amongst other sanctions.

Law Power

Appointing Personal Injury Lawyer in Las Vegas

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If you or a loved one was injured due to someone else’s fault, you may be owed compensation to cover your expenses. Often this is an emotional and overwhelming moment, and few of us have prepared for such situations. What happens if you need to negotiate with insurance companies or seek compensation through a lawsuit? It is unlikely that you already have a lawyer to handle these things for you.

In today’s media era, there are endless sources that promote various personal injury lawyers, but how do you know which one is right for you and your case? The most important thing is that you find someone with whom you feel comfortable and with whom you feel you are on your side.

At kelly huange sq, our personal injury lawyers will fight to protect your legal rights and help you seek the maximum compensation you deserve under the law.

Do Your Research

If you are starting your search from scratch, the best place to start is by asking your friends and family if they have used a personal injury lawyer they would recommend.Another good resource for your search is an online legal directory. Legal directories often include reviews and give you some information about a law firm or a lawyer in particular.

Once you have found some lawyers in your area, explore what kind of cases they have handled in the past and read the comments of their clients. This information can be found on their websites or social networks. Here are just some of the other things to find in your search:

  • Stay up to date with the state licensing agency
  • Industry awards
  • Years of experience
  • Results of the cases
  • Specialty areas
  • Reviews

The Consultation

Once you have narrowed the search, contact the law firm and schedule a free consultation. The consultation will give you the opportunity to find out if the lawyer has experience in handling your type of personal injury claim. But what you really need to determine is if you feel comfortable and trust that injury lawyer. Consider preparing questions before the consultation. Such things to ask include:

  • How much experience do you have in personal injury cases?
  • Can you explain how a personal injury case like mine would develop?
  • Have you taken cases like this to trial? If yes, what was the result?
  • What is my role throughout the case?

Pursuing a personal injury claim can be overwhelming and challenging. Having the right lawyer for personal injury cases will help alleviate anxiety while seeking compensation. Remember, you want to choose a lawyer with experience in cases like yours, but especially one with whom you feel comfortable, who is on your side throughout the process.

Business Law

5 Things You Need to Consider Before Filing for Divorce

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Filing for divorce is a major decision, not one that you should enter into lightly. The better prepared you are beforehand, the smoother the entire process will be. Those who have the most difficult divorces are those who are least prepared for them. Entering into things having done your due diligence, and knowing what to expect, will make things much easier.

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Make Sure It’s the Right Decision

It might seem obvious, but you would be surprised how many people enter into divorce proceedings without giving the matter proper thought. This isn’t something you should do in a fit of anger, no matter how severe. This should be a well-reasoned decision that you reach after much careful consideration.

Once divorce papers have been served, even if you can legally halt the process, it will have a lasting impact on your relationship going forward. If you have any hopes for reconciliation, you should exhaust this possibility before filing.

Interview Potential Attorneys

In order to make sure that you come out of divorce proceedings as well as possible, and in order to ensure that things progress as smoothly as possible, you should hire an attorney who specializes in divorce litigation. You can find numerous individual attorneys and law firms such as Cordell Cordell, by searching online.

Once you have identified a potential law firm to hire, you should conduct an interview. This is your opportunity to vet the attorneys before you commit any money to retaining their services. Ask them about their specialist areas of knowledge, their prior experience, and of course what their fee structure is.

Gather Financial Documents

Even if your divorce proceeds amicably, you will need to disclose a lot of financial information. Your attorney, and your spouses, will want to have an accurate picture of your current financial status. This, among a number of other factors, will determine how your assets are divided between you and your spouse.

The sooner you can gather together all the relevant documentation, the sooner the necessary accounting will be done. As things progress, you may need to dig out even more information and documentation. The more of it you can find early on in the process, the less you will have to run around later.

Consider Your Custody Goals

You should be aware that, barring exceptional circumstances, you will have to share custody of your children with your spouse. It is therefore better for everyone if you are able to work out custody arrangements between yourselves. Talk to your spouse about what each of you wants in this regard as there might be a way to accommodate both of your wishes if you are willing to look for it.

Tie Up Any Purchases or Sales

Once you begin divorce proceedings, the judge will usually forbid you or your spouse from acquiring or offloading any significant assets. This is to prevent either party from attempting to conceal or deny assets from the other. If you have any legitimate transactions which have not yet concluded, it would be a good idea to wrap them up before filing for divorce.

Filing for divorce can be a very stressful time, but if you prepare adequately beforehand, things stand a much better chance of progressing smoothly.