I've had an idea for a product review site and am trying to discern whether product photographs can be legally reproduced on the website, from where fair-use photographs should be obtained and how, if at all, they should be attributed. [more inside]
I'm thinking there must be many real people out there with the same names as fictional TV characters. They had these names before the TV show ever came into being, but because of the huge popularity of these shows, their lives must be changed. [more inside]
I made it through law school without taking crim pro, I only crammed what I needed of crim pro for the bar exam, and my practice has nothing to do with criminal law. So, esteemed colleagues at the bar, can you tell me how jurisdictional lines affect police procedure at the state/local level? [more inside]
So there were some problems at the testing center for my Law School Admission Test. They are offering me a letter for my application that would explain this with my score. Can this look bad for me? [more inside]
My cousin was married for years to an infamous criminal and all-around bad guy--let's call him John. John is infamous only to people in and scholars of his particular professional sector; the world at large isn't aware of him. John is no longer living. ~20 years ago, a local reporter wrote a book about him, which of course included his wife, my cousin. The book made a brief stir but was quickly forgotten, my cousin has moved on, and life continues ... except I've recently heard rumors that someone may have optioned the book for a movie. So now what? [more inside]
Is there a right to breast pump in private businesses in California? There is a right for breastfeeding in CA Civil Code S 43-53, but it doesn't mention breast pumping. If there is, what is the best way to lodge a complaint about being disallowed from breast pumping?
My friend is buying a house and received the original 1942 deed to the place, in Arizona. There's a (blatantly racist) provision we're having trouble parsing. [more inside]
A friend (no, really!) will officially be divorced next Monday, and will then own 50% of a residential property in Bucks County, Pennsylvania. The property has one house (that's basically a teardown), currently occupied by their ex (with no intention of selling), and one barn. The rest is undeveloped property. The property is in a great school district (Central Bucks). Is there ANY way they can sell my 50% stake in the property. They're wiling to sell at a discount and talk to developers, banks, private investors, whatever.
My Dad owns about 20 acres of land in a small town that he wishes to give to my brother, my sister, and myself now, not when he passes. My siblings and I plan to split the proceeds of the sale of the land evenly amongst us. Which way, tax-wise, would maximize the amount of money we receive from the land in the end? Should my dad give the title/deed to us first and we sell it, or Dad sells it and then gives us the money from the sale of the land? [more inside]
46, lawyer, musician. I have been fallow for an extended time and am coming out of a bankruptcy and divorce. I have a couple years experience as a criminal defense lawyer (from 4-5 yrs ago) but haven't really done much since. I don't want to continue in criminal law. I find jobs that are intriguing but my resume is spotty at best. So how do I write an effective cover letter and create a resume that doesn't reflect my lazy attitude toward work these last few years? [more inside]
My ex-wife has not paid her monthly fees on the land I sold her in 9 months now. Confounding details within... [more inside]
My family just moved to Tippecanoe County in Indiana, and we're baffled by the seemingly arbitrary rules that dictate when babies are and are not allowed in bars and restaurants. [more inside]
According to my copy of The Art of War, "Sun Tzu asserts the moral right to be identified as the author of this work". Please help me understand what is intended by this statement in this instance. [more inside]
In the moment of encounter with an authority who is making a legal claim that is a technicality or perhaps over-reaches of an intended law, is there any defense? Are you stuck until you get in front of a judge? [more inside]
I have a name that is similar to another registered trademark - different services but similar in terms of spelling. Is this likely to be rejected? [more inside]
Hello, I am working on a photography project --hoping to profile a few modern day cowboy bounty men who operate in the West (preferably find people off the beaten path) and who have a strong "cowboy look". Thank you in advance for your help...
I am browsing cases in Canada, and noticed several cited "Unreported" cases. The "Unreported" have a year, last name and the general offense. No results when I try to search for them on canlii.org. The provincial court has told me they can't look it up without a first name. Can anyone advise on how I should proceed with my research?
I'm in a tricky situation with a car accident. [more inside]
Several roommates and I moved out of an apartment in DC this summer that is owned by a large corporate company (coughAvalonBaycough). We’d been in the apartment for almost four years. Before we moved out, staff from the building signed off on paperwork stating that there was no visible damage. A month later we get an incredibly bogus set of damage charges from the building for nearly $1,000. We already got our security deposit back, but they’re threatening to send us to collections over these new charges. [more inside]
What job do you have that uses your law degree but didn't require you to take the bar and, ideally, you're able to do it as a side gig? [more inside]
My club's Constitution (written in 1934) requires that members be notified of proposed changes by mail. I would like to send a notification via email rather than postal mail and am looking for any legal precedent (preferably in New York State) showing that the legal definition of mail in this case would include e-mail. [more inside]
I have an arbitration clause in my lease. Does this preclude me from using small claims court? [more inside]
I recently applied for and am now actively being considered for a legal assistant/senior case technician position with the federal government (Social Security Administration). The job description sounds a lot like what I used to do as a paralegal (reviewing records, analyzing cases, making recommendations for further action, contacting medical providers), but I'm worried that what I've actually applied for is a secretarial position (e.g., making travel arrangements, maintaining calendars, hanging out a copy machine a lot, collating and binding copies). [more inside]
I am in need of a Title 1 school choice transfer to get my child out of a really terrible school into a pretty decent one. The administration is giving me the runaround, so I'd like to find the specific section of the law that discusses it so I can print it out and cite it. I won't have the time to scan through the entire law before my meeting with them. Please help! [more inside]
I work in corrections. On facebook, on my page, I posted something that might have been a breach of confidentiality. Snowflake details inside. [more inside]
I'm currently in Mexico and will be returning home to the US in about a week. I'd like to bring back some tamales to share with my family, but I'm not sure whether or not I can bring them through customs. I've read the guidelines here and here, but I'm still not sure. [more inside]
In the context of an employment contract in Illinois, does the employee have any ability to rescind their signature if the employer has not yet signed? [more inside]
What are some computer science-related/IT jobs that help people or society at large? [more inside]
I recently gave notice at my job, after having received Metrocards in advance. The HR department says because of the Metrocards, I still have to keep working until my resignation date, but won't get a final paycheck and will owe them money afterwards. Is this either legal or normal? What should I do? Details inside. [more inside]
Lawyers: how do you decline helping out your friends? [more inside]
My husband just got a permit denied for the reason that there was an active warrant against him. We have no idea what it can possibly be for and need to find out ASAP, as he's going up for a job that will be doing a background check. How can we best do this as fast as possible? [more inside]
I'm looking for a well-written, balanced book on corporate personhood for research. Actually, could use two or three if possible, and links to good, extensive and well-researched non-political articles on the web would be helpful as well. [more inside]
My car failed its MOT yesterday and, as a result of my bad time management, the tax disc has expired today. I can't tax it without it being covered by a valid MOT certificate, but I need to get it to a garage for repairs so that it can pass the MOT. Is it legal for me to drive it to the mechanic? [more inside]
I live in the US and have followed the RIAA/MPAA suits closely. Over the years I have heard British news agencies report such-and-such as being charged with illegal downloading and wondered if that were even possible. [more inside]
The management software my company uses recently added the ability to send messages via SMS to our clientele. We've signed up and it's tested well, but we're not clear on the legality of sending business correspondence messages (no marketing, simply "Your rent is due, please call # or pay online @ oursite.com/pay") without the client expressly opting in for SMS messaging. Do we need to have everyone opt-in or are non-marketing messages for the purpose of communicating legitimate business notices exempt? [more inside]
I'm a reference for a friend who is applying for a license to practice law. The reference form asks me whether my friend has ever "been arrested, or engaged in unlawful conduct". My friend has not, to my knowledge, ever been arrested (or had any other trouble with the law), but like most people consumed alcohol before the age of 21, jaywalks, downloaded music as a teen, etc. Nothing serious at all. What should I say? [more inside]
I currently attend a top 2 law school in the UK (no prize for guessing which), and am interested in working in the US after I graduate. While I am aware that I will be eligible to take the bar exam in NY and California with a degree from a common law jurisdiction, would my prospects of landing a law firm gig be appreciably augmented if I go for an LLM (or perhaps even a JD) at a US law school? [more inside]
What kind of skill sets does one need to be of best help to addressing climate change? It would seem like the most obvious choice is to major in environmental science. Otherwise, maybe political science to deal with legislators and capital hill? Or "who cares what you study undergrad" and go to law school?
(YNML) We're purchasing a leasehold property in the UK. The lease for this property says "The Demise hereinbefore contained includes the following rights:- ... and the exclusive use of the parking space numbered 1 shown hatched red on the plan ...". Our solicitor has been saying that 'as the right is exclusive this does not form a legal right under common law and as such may be denied by subsequent Landlords.' I don't understand why this is an issue, and as it's held up our move, I would like to understand. Although I've asked my solicitor, I suspect Mefites can give me a clearer answer! More details inside... [more inside]
My grandfather was born in Pennsylvania to Italian parents during the 1920s in Lackawanna County / Scranton. I was able to obtain a new birth certificate from the PA Dept of Vital Records, but the last name was misspelled. When I called about this, they could only tell me that the mis-spelling "was what it said on the birth certificate". How do I go about seeing the original to get the mistake corrected? [more inside]
At the age of 46 I had to get my younger brother, who also lives in the U.S. but for a much longer time, to cosign my lease because my wife and I have only a year of American credit history being recent immigrants. Now I know it is illegal to deny housing based on someone being an immigrant but that it is legal to deny housing based on a credit check. Is it foul play that they refuse to check our foreign credit history? [more inside]
Father left his stuff to me in a trust. Not sure what that means, and need an answer to the most basic of questions. [more inside]
I've been given lots of conflicting advice about how one should approach the study of law. While I know the hoary old advice that one should do whatever works best for oneself holds true, I hope that the collective wisdom of former law students has more insight to offer than that! [more inside]
I'm 46. I've been a stay at home mom for most of the last 11 years. I have an undergrad in Religious Studies (Ethics focus) and a Masters in Library Sciences as well as a MS in Education, Counseling. I want to get involved in some type of higher-level policy work. I'm interested in both education and women's issues, specifically pro-choice abortion issues. I've done volunteering in both areas (PTA, and Planned Parenthood, for example). While it's valuable, I don't want to be a room parent or walk people into a clinic. I want to be involved in fighting for rights and supporting laws in a more meaningful way. How does one do this? Does it take more schooling? A political career (not interested in running for any local positions)? A law degree? I know I need to choose an area to focus on, but I'm gathering information right now. Any ideas are welcome!
Everyone always tells you that going to law school and being a lawyer will open up all types of job possibilities. I tried being a big firm lawyer and am don't want to continue doing it. I'm looking to figure out life after biglaw and what that actually means. Looking for advice on how to figure out what's next, where to look for jobs that might play to a legal skill set, and how and what to highlight about biglaw experience when looking for the next job. [more inside]
My lease, like most, says that subleasing is not allowed without manager's consent. I came in on a sublease and later let the manager know I was planning on subleasing. She just declared she will not accept any subleasing any more. Does anyone know if this is legal for her to do this? It's breaking faith, but not breaking the literal contract. FYI, I live in Missouri.
Hi MeFi, This past Friday I was pulled over by Brookline PD for speeding (doing 42 at 35) -- they told me my license was suspended and immediately put the cuffs on me and took me in. I told them this has to be a mistake, but they didn't want to listen. My license was briefly suspended in November when I was laid off from my job and was unable to pay for one of my tickets. I rectified this once I got my first unemployment check and have proof of payments via my bank statement. When I went to the RMV to get my license reinstated, they charged me $140 and told me I was all set. This very same day I bought my auto insurance via Progressive and we all know you cant buy insurance unless your license is valid. The cops at Brookline PD are saying my RMV record shows nothing about my license being reinstated and they believe that someone at the RMV made a clerical error and did not do their job properly. My questions are as follows; - Can I sue this RMV branch for negligence? - How can I get this stupid shit off my record? They took my photo and all. I don't want this lingering on my record! I've never been arrested before. [more inside]
Short version: my siding has a 3/4" hole thanks to a bobcat's spinning tire shooting a piece of gravel into it. I know this is the cause, but do no have a video to prove it. The bobcat operator's boss and his boss have "determined" (magically) that the bobcat did not cause the hole. Pursue, or eat it? [more inside]
I'm thinking about titles for a new project and was wondering about the word "Hobbit." I'm not familiar with copyright law here but isn't it that after a certain amount of years the work - and everything in it - goes to the public domain? Are the works of JRR Tolkien there yet?
I am employed in Sacramento, California. I would like to speak to an attorney with experience in employment law, as related to overtime-exempt status. [more inside]