Thursday, September 1, 2016

How to Avoid a Traffic ticket

You look in your rear view mirror and ... Oh, no ... the dreaded blue lights! Your mind races; were you speeding? Is your insurance current? Did they finally suspend your license from that back child support?

In America, traffic tickets are always a possibility on our roadways. Police officers are constantly searching for inventive ways to stop you and increase their “productivity” numbers by issuing a citation. What can you do to prevent receiving that piece of paper that takes your time and money?

The police need a reason to stop you. Follow these tips to help prevent giving them that reason and, ultimately, avoiding a ticket;

1. Wear Your Seat Belt 
In Arkansas, Police officers can stop a driver simply for failure to wear safety belts while driving. Wearing your seat belt is an easy way to avoid this excuse for officers to stop your travels and ruin your day. Plus, seat belts DO save lives so BUCKLE UP!

2. Keep Registration Current
Another easy stop for the police is observing your expired license plate. You may not think officers pay attention to those small numbers on your tag, but they do. Keeping this visible evidence of compliance with state laws current will help prevent a traffic stop.

3. STOP at STOP signs
Failure to stop at stop signs and traffic signals is another sure-fire way to get pulled over by the police. Officers watch to see the weight of your vehicle “transfer” when you stop. A motorist's failure to come to a complete stop is like a gift to traffic officers. Don't give them any presents.

4. Obey the speed limit
Some people believe that police officers will “give 5 over,” assuming that unless they are greater than 5 mph over the speed limit that the cops will not pull them over. This is a fallacy. The police only need evidence that you exceeded the speed limit by 1 mph to justify a stop. Don't make the mistake. Drive the speed limit.

5. Make Eye Contact 
Many people feel that if they pass an officer they should avoid eye contact or even look the other way for fear that the officer might notice them more if they do not. This is also a fallacy. Officers are trained to observe certain types of suspicious human behavior. If it is normal to look in the eyes of a passing driver, wave, or otherwise acknowledge their presence, then you should do the same regardless if the other driver is a police officer.

Should you be on the receiving end of a traffic stop don't fret! Our firm stands ready to assist you with all your legal needs from divorce to civil suits to the everyday traffic ticket. 

Friday, August 12, 2016

Pregnancy As A Factor In Employment Discrimination

A recent discrimination case that’s making headlines in Little Rock serves to illustrate just how important it is to know your rights as an employee and what recourse is available to you in the event you experience discrimination in the workplace.

A former employee of Triple T Foods in Springvale, Arkansas is suing the company for discrimination after she was terminated in late September. The female employee was fired immediately after informing the company that she was pregnant.

Pregnancy discrimination is expressly forbidden under Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964. Furthermore, the Arkansas Civil Rights Act of 1994 clearly states that citizens have the right to hold employment without discrimination. Because Triple T Foods has so far failed to provide any legal or legitimate cause for the employee’s termination, it appears the employee’s case is relatively sound and that she was illegally discriminated against. If the court finds in her favor, she may be entitled to receive punitive and compensatory damages, back wages or other forms of compensation.

Employment discrimination may take a variety of forms, which often makes it difficult for victims to identify whether — and, specifically, how — their rights have been violated. The unsettling truth is that employment discrimination is surprisingly common, and discriminatory practices tend to go under-reported.

It’s important to not allow employment discrimination to deprive you of your livelihood and personal well-being. If you feel you have been the victim of employment discrimination, consulting a lawyer can help you determine what options are available to you.

(501) 315-5297

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When Discipline Turns To Violent Child Abuse

Every parent takes a unique approach to child discipline, but there are clearly defined legal boundaries that no parent should cross. The law provides certain limits for discipline that, when exceeded, can have serious legal consequences for parents.

An Arkansas mother and father were recently brought up on charges of child abuse after a babysitter found bruises covering their six-year-old child’s face, chest, arms, legs and buttocks. After the babysitter reported the child’s injuries to the authorities, the police launched an investigation that turned up evidence of child abuse.

Police suspect the parents were in the habit of disciplining the boy with a paddle made from wood that was 1 1/8 inches thick. Authorities also believe the parents routinely slapped the boy across the face as a form of punishment for misbehavior. This case demonstrates what can happen when discipline goes too far. Reports of abuse to the Division of Children and Family Services (DCFS) are taken very seriously, and if abuse is evident, the parents or caretakers responsible for the child’s protection may face criminal charges. The ultimate result could be jail time, large fines, probation and a loss of custody, which can have devastating effects on a family for many years into the future.

Allegations of child abuse are taken very seriously in Little Rock and West Tennessee. The courts and police aggressively pursue any course of action necessary to protect children from abuse. It is important to seek legal counsel if you are involved in any legal matter related to this issue.

Please contact the office of for more information!

(501) 315-5297

The Consequences Of Negligence

Negligence occurs when a person acts in an irresponsible manner or fails to take the proper care that circumstances demand. Negligent actions that result in harm to another individual may result in severe criminal and civil penalties, as is the case with Teagan Ross Martin, a 21-year-old man who struck several cyclists with his vehicle while traveling through Arkansas — killing one person and injuring several others.

Martin faces charges of negligent homicide in the death of Merritt Levitan, an 18-year-old cyclist killed in the collision. In addition to the homicide charge, Martin also faces 13 charges of negligence related to his conduct when passing cyclists, as well as one charge of careless and prohibited driving. He has pleaded not guilty to the charges.

Not all cases of negligence are created equal. While some may involve physical injury to another, others may be less serious in nature and only involve property damage. However, negligence is one of the primary means by which the court can establish liability. If you are found to have committed an offense as the result of negligence, you may face both criminal and civil penalties and have the possibility of serving jail time, paying large fines and providing compensation to victims and their families.

If you believe you’ve been injured or have suffered undue consequences because of someone else’s negligence, it’s important to seek professional legal representation to establish a course of action. If you have been accused of negligence, you need to immediately contact a lawyer to establish your case and protect your rights.


A Contract Is A Contract, No Matter The Circumstances

Violating the terms of any contract can land you in serious legal trouble. Regardless of the circumstances, legally binding contracts are just that: legally binding. This fact lies at the center of one of the most interesting legal battles to make headlines in Little Rock.

The story begins with John Lile, president of Cosmopolitan Life Insurance Co., being accused of charging more than $300,000 in personal expenses to his company credit card. When lawsuits started piling up against Lile and Advanced Insurance Brokerage of America Inc. (AIBA), a company where Lile served as CEO, he was forced to foot the bill for his legal defense.

Lile had insurance from Mutual Marine Office Inc. of New York and Gotham Insurance Co. of Morristown, N.J., which entitled him to legal representation. These companies failed to honor their contract with Lile, leaving him to pay for his own defense. In retaliation, Lile, himself accused of being a crooked insurance executive, is suing two other insurance companies for breach of contract.
While many of us may gain some satisfaction from the irony of an insurer getting cheated by other insurers, the fact of the matter is that Lile has strong legal footing for his claims. He had a binding legal contract with Gotham and Mutual Marine, which they failed to honor. Thus, he is likely to receive compensation from the insurance companies once the case is resolved.

This bizarre and convoluted case illustrates that a contract is a contract, no matter what the circumstances. If you have questions about a contract involving you or your business, meet with a knowledgeable attorney to make sure you’re completely informed of your rights and obligations.

If you have any questions for concerns please do not hesitate to contact us!