The Staffordshire University legal advice clinic, or SULACis an advice clinic where Staffordshire University law studentssupervised by legal practitioners includingmembers of the law school staff, provide a free legal advice serviceto members of the public on a variety of legal issues. The clinic is modeled on life in a solicitor’s officegiving students the opportunity to dip their toe in the waterto find out what legal practice is really all about. I think in today’s society it’s an amazing opportunityto gain skills that you can put forwardinto your work life, for the rest of your life, and I thinklaw is an amazing subject to do that withwe’ve seen the University invest in our futuresand we apply these skills not only in the class, or in examsor coursework, but we can apply them toreal life scenarios, so it’s an amazing opportunity. Students, it seems to me, will have a number of benefits. The first is that they will have anopportunity to apply the knowledge that they’ve acquired inthe classroom to a practical legal situation. This is important. No client ever comes in to see a solicitor to ask them about a contractualproblem. They come in to tell you about that problem and then you have to decide whatarea of law applies. They will also improve skills such as drafting because that will be dealing withthe preparation of an attendance note for example,or indeed the letter of advice. They’ll also have to do research becausethe advice that they have to give will have to reflect the law as it currentlystands. A point that would be checked obviously by their supervising solicitor. They will also learn to work as part of a team because they’ll be workingin groups of threes with all of the steps they will be doing and they will also have to operate professionally. The point is that lots of clients trying to be very emotional when they come inand the students will need to be able to detach themselves emotionallyfrom the client, but still provide them with support. The benefits to the clients seem to me to be fairly obvious, the first isthe opportunity to get free legal advice which is all too rare these days. But SULAC will also be advising in a areas of law where it is either goingto be very difficult to obtain advice in private sectorand will also be targeting clients who wouldn’t be able to affordto pay for solicitors to advise them. And the final benefit is that of course the work,because it is signed up off by qualified solicitors,the client will be comfortable in knowing that the qualityof the advice is good.
helloI’m David Clark and welcome to the Turcan Connell videocast on digital assetsand how they can past on in your legacy. Obviously, this is a very fast-movingarea,the whole area technology. I’m here with one of Turcan Connell’sexperts on this issue, Catherine Guthrie. Catherine, can you tell me, what are digital assets and how can they be managed, basically?Well, essentially, a digital asset is anything that could stored in a binary format andcomes with a right to use. So, that could be your email accounts,your social media accounts, photo-sharing accounts and the things that you’d storein these online accounts; so your web documents, your photos themselves, your videos. Some ofthese will obviously have a monetary value like the balance of yourPayPal account,some of them have sentimental value which you’ll want somebody else to benefit fromand some of them just contain a bit too much information to the leftforever and ever. So that’s things like Facebook and things like that? We’veheard a lot about that in the news about people -their Facebook account going on after after they die. Yes and that’s a very current issue. Facebookrecently announced that they’re going to introduce way to memorialiseyour Facebook account. So, rather than it simply being like to continue,it will be updated to show that you have died andyour friends and family will be able to continue to post olike a online memorial to you. So, can digital assets be passed on to someone else? Wellit really depends on the Internet Service Provider involved. Most people, when they sign up to an online account,they’ll tick the box to say they’ve read the terms and conditions. These terms and conditionsusually do contain something about itwhat will happen to that acoountwhen you die. So, in most cases, itsa case of going back to those terms and conditionsand seeing what they say. For example, in your iTunes and Kindle account, youdon’t own that content. You’re effectively only leasing itso you can’t pass that on to somebody else; while could pass on the physical thing,can’t pass on the content. Other things like gaming credits, for example,can usually be passed on fairly freely so it does just dependwhat the asset is. So, how shoulddigital assets be dealt with when somebody dies? Well, the first thingyou really need to do is keep it clear record of what accounts you have and theaccess details – the username and password. You can do this onlinethrough an online safety deposit box or you can simply do it in that paper formatat so long as you keep it up to date. And then,as with any succession planning, you need to decide who’s going to benefit. And the simplest way to make your wishes known is to simplyput a digital asset clause into your Will. This could allow your executors the discretionas to who should benefit or it couldbe a lot more prescriptive and detail very specificallywho should get what. The other thing you probably do want to consider iswhether to appointa separate digital executor or whether you just want to make sure that one ofyour appointed executivesis digitally literate so that they will be able to carry out your instructions. Thanks very much, Catherine. So, for more information on digital assets,or Wills and legacies in general, go toturcanconnell. com
Sunwest Trust Does NOT Provide Self Directed IRA Legal AdviceHi, my name is Terry White, CEO of Sunwest Trust, and this afternoon, and I’m glad you’re with me. What I wanted to talk about today, is the ‘Ask The Expert’ button that we have on the front of our website, and explain to you a little bit more about that, why it’s there, and encourage you to use it. First of all, we get lots of questions, from either potential customers, or customers, about tax issues; how a particular issue might be viewed by the IRS; and then also, in some cases, some legal advice. So, we’re not in a position to answer the tax issues, for more than one reason, the number one thing would be you know, we’re not really paid to do that, and we don’t charge for that; and the other thing is, probably the major thing is, we don’t know your entire situation, so, if you were to call us up and say, ‘hey, I want to buy this piece of property, my last name’s White, obviously, and I want to rent this piece of property, to Suzie Smith’. Suzie Smith may be my daughter, that’s married, which would make that a prohibited transaction, but the person you talk to here at Sunwest Trust doesn’t know that. So, we can’t really answer those questions, because we don’t know your entire situation. And so that’s why we always encourage you to talk to your own tax professional, or your own tax attorney. Because they will be more familiar with your specific situation. So, what we’ve done in an attempt to try to help you, with answering some of those questions, is we’ve given you this ‘Ask the Expert’ button; and we hired JM Consulting a few years back, and you send them an e-mail with your question, and I think they get back to you, like, within forty-eight hours. It’s pretty quick turnaround, but they have to do, sometimes have to do some research; sometimes they may have to clarify what you’re asking, or ask for some more information; but then they give you a very conservative approach, based on internal revenue code, and the Department of Labor, and they give you the answer, that you can then, if you want, you can take that to your CPA, or your tax attorney, and say that, ‘this is what I asked, this is what they told me, is there a way we can do something different to make this work, or you know, is this a situation that we just can’t do’. So, I would encourage you to use that, resource, as much as you can, we pay them, whether you use it or not,so, the more you use it, the better, and the more bang we get for our buck. So, we encourage you to use it, you just click on that button, you agree that you understand they’re not your representative,they’re not our representative. They’re just an independent consulting firm that’s answering questions, based on the information you give them, and then they will e-mail that information back to you. So, I hope that’s useful for you, and I hope it helps you understand, and, I think a lot of times, people call our office, and they get kind of the pat answer that we don’t give tax advice, we don’t give investment advice, we’re not; we can’t give legal advice, and they think that we’re just trying to be hard to get along with, but we’re really not. We want to make sure that you get the best advice, for your particular situation, and we’re just not in a position to give that to you. And, it’s really not part of the service we provide, so hopefully, that will give you a better understanding. And then, next time, on Tuesday at Two, we’ll go back to the Self-Directed IRA Handbook, begin going over some of that stuff again. So, I hope you’ll join me next week, for Tuesday at Two.
Hi. My name’s Andy Gale. I’m a business attorney and I practice here in Orange County California. I had a client retain us this week who wanted to form a corporation for his bail bond company. And bail bondsmen, like a lot of other people, are licensed professionals in the state ofCalifornia, and whenever you have a license that’s given to you by the state, a lot oftimes there are some unique requirements that are placed upon you that are not placed onthe typical business corporation. And so I want to just walk you through one of thoseexamples, which happens to do with how you select and how you get approved the name foryour bail bond corporation. Many times, the first step in getting your corporation formedis filing the articles of incorporation with the Secretary of State. However, in the caseof a bail bond corporation, there’s actually a preliminary step, and that step is gettingyour corporate name approved by the Department of Insurance. if you happen to do things inreverse, that is file your articles of incorporation, get a name approved by the Secretary of State,and then go check with the Department of Insurance, the Department of Insurance could reject theproposed name that you have and then you’ll be stuck with either having to go back andamend your articles of incorporation with the Secretary of State or from that pointforward doing business under a fictitious business name, which is not always desirable. So the steps that you need to go through in order to you get your name approved are these. First, you’d go to the California Department of Insurance at this URL, and you would wantto familiarize yourself with what the descriptive or definitive words are that need to appearinside the corporate name. So in this particular case, we will go to the definitive word sectionand you will find that, under the law, what is required for a bail bond company is thata bail applicant or a bail licensee must include the word “bail” in its corporate name. Soif you just happen to do ABC Enterprises and submit that for approval with the Departmentof Insurance, they will reject it, but if you have the ABC Bail Company, or ABC BailCorporation, or something with the word “bail” in it then that would be approved. Next whatyou need to do is you need to review the Exceptions to Name Approval Requirements, and there isan entire list put out in the code found here in the Department of Insurance’s website. Sorry. And it’s found in the California Insurance Code regulations where they will talk aboutthe exceptions to the name approval requirements, and then the list of unacceptable words ishere in California Code of Regulations, and none of these words can appear in your corporatename. Otherwise that will get rejected as well. And then finally, what you want to doto do a “quick and dirty” search, if you will, is go to the business entity name search here,and you will click on your name search here, and you can run a check. If your name, ifthe two first words of your corporate name conflicts with another, in this case bailbond company, then the Department of Insurance will not permit you to use that name. So Ihope that was helpful in letting you know some of the nuances that apply to forminga bail bond corporation. If you’re a bail bondsman and are interested in forming a corporationin the state of California, I’d love to be able to help you. Please give me a call. Myname again is Andy Gale. I’m an attorney practicing in Orange County, California.
My name is Lydia Foy,I’m here near the four courtsin Dublin, in Irelandand I’ve beenbattlingto get basic rights before the law for very many years . What happened to me was I was born witha syndrome whichoriginally used to be called transexual syndrome but unfortunetly terminologywasdestroyedwhen there were some controversialcasesso people just casually dropped the syndrome which is a medical termand just start calling peoplewho were born with a gender disability, just calling them transexuals, it justtrivialized the disability and alienated. FLAC has represented Dr. Lydia Foy for more than twelve yearsand what happened was thatafter her personal experiences of transgender and transitioning she was thenlooking for legal recognition because there are a lot of circumstances in whichshe might be asked to produce a birth certificate which would show a differentgender from the gender she was presenting as, which was very embarrassingand also as a form of affirmation and recognition of her new identity whichis very importantbut she got nowhere so it became clear that she would have to take legal action . She came to FLAC to help her with that. It took five years to get adecision on that in the high courtand the decision went against her. The European Court of Human Rights two daysl latergave a decision in favor of transgendered people from Britainunder exactly the same lawso we appealed that to the Supreme Court. It took another three years for that to come up inthe Supreme Courtby that time the law here had changed and we had brought the European Convention ofHuman Rights into our domestic law and it provided an opportunity to test this newlaw in her caseand we eventually won in two thousand and seven but we’re now in asituation where the state has appealed the positive decision in the high court in thiscase, and we will have to fight that in the Supreme Courtand may well have to take it to the European Courts as well. FLAC is an organization that hashas a huge dependence on the voluntary involvement of practicing lawyers. We have about seventy centers around the country which we supportwe organize twenty one of them directly, others are organized throughthe Citizens Information Centers of Irelandbut the purpose of our centers and the work in the centers is that peoplewho need legal information and legal advice can get it in a non-threatening way, ina confidential way and in a way that just gives them appropriate accessso we like to see FLAC as an organization which can use law and legal tools as acatalystfor social change, social justice.
Hi, how are you going? My name’s Caitlin KeageI’m currently in my final year of LawI’m doing my Graduate Diploma in Legal Practiceand I have another degree in Political Science. My name’s Carly ManuelI’m in my fourth year of Law doing honours this yearand I’m part of the Legal Advice Clinic. The Legal Advice Clinic is a placement optionfor students who are enrolled in an elective calledLegal, Professional and Community Service Experience. Students can choose to be placed in the clinic as their placement. The clinic plays a very important role in the developmentof, not only student skills, but alsothe students’ understanding of client-centered practiceand what it means to actually be a Lawyer. So, students learn about the role of the Lawyerand in particular they really have a day-to-dayunderstanding of all the ethical componentsof what it means to actually be a legal practitioner. Well, the Law Clinic was a really good initiative by UniSAIt’s just a great opportunity to provideaccess to justice for those in the communitywho wouldn’t be able to seek legal adviceif it wasn’t for the service that we provide. There is a vast section of the populationwhich simply does not get access to legal adviceand then, in turn, those people don’t get access to justice. So, the Legal Advice Clinic can provide accessto justice for particularly marginalisedand vulnerable members of our society. The legal advice clinic here at the uni is a free serviceavailable to anyone in the community. We’re able to interview them and figure out whattheir legal dispute is and if they’re eligiblefor us to help them then we’ll do our bestwith the resources that we have. Researching the issues, then talking with the Solicitor thereand then being able to have follow up interviewsand advise the clients. Actually dealing with real people providesquite a different experience for students compared withproblem solving in a simulated environment. Throughout the Law degree there are a lot ofexperiential learning opportunities for studentsbut in this particular environment they’re actually able to solvereal problems with real people. Our first day at the clinic was really full on. We had our client, we had to get out a letter by that nightand now I’m writing letters within an hourand that is definitely going to help in my career. The skills that I’ve learned in the clinicwill definitely help me in my future career. You really learn how much is involved in taking on a client. Any member of the public can come to the clinicand we will endeavour to help as many people as we can. There are some areas of law that we will be unable to help withbut we will make a decision about thoseon a case-by-case basis.
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It’s important to understandwhat some of the rules or regulations might be,you know, that are around a problem -for example, a fence or a tree. You know, where does the law standin terms of what you can or can’t do?But, yes, who else can you go and talk to?You can go and talk to a council,you can get on the legal handbookto find out what your responsibilities areas an owner of landin relation to building a fenceor removal of a tree. If you wanted interpretation -legal interpretation and legal’s opinion -you could go onto a legal community siteor ring up the local legal community centreand get legal opinion,at most times at free cost to you. Well, in terms of dealing with neighbourhood disputes,you can get a lot of legal advicefrom the internet. There’s Law Handbook Online that you can approachand they do set out a lot of the fencingand clauses to do with trees and things. So that might be your first point. There’s also community legal centres. You can look it up online or look it up in the Yellow Pages. You’ll be able to find out where they’re locatedand what their contact numbers are. So they’ll actually tell you what your rights arein relation to the law. There’s also the Disputes Settlement Centrethat could help you out withwhat you can do in terms of dealing with your neighbour. But if what you’re looking foris specifically legal advice,then my advice is to go to Law Handbook Onlineor to contact your nearest community legal centre.
The legal aid system was created in 1949 as part of the development of the post-war WelfareState, alongside the National Health Service. It provides funding both for legal adviceand out-of-court representation by lawyers, for example in negotiating the settlementof disputes, and — should it come to this — legal representation in court. While the NHS provides free, universal access to medical services, access to free legaladvice and representation has always been subject to a means-test and a merits-test. Although means-tested, the scheme was originally intended to reach beyond the very poorest,reaching 80 per cent of the population. However, the better-off never received entirely freelegal services under the scheme: they are required to make a contribution towards thecosts. And the means test has been progressively tightened up, so the scheme currently coversjust over a third of the population. So, part of the welfare state, but this limitedprovision of legal services is a poor relation of our universal free health care and education,its overall budget dwarfed by the running costs of the NHS. And the legal aid budgetis not spent on feeding so-called “fat-cat” lawyers. In 2009, the average legal aid lawyerearned £25,000. Legal aid is currently available to covera wide range of issues in the civil and family law arena, in particular those affecting poorermembers of society, such as problems relating to welfare benefits entitlements, debt andhousing, and problems arising on family breakdown. However, all this is set to change in April2013, when the controversial Legal Aid, Sentencing and Punishment of Offenders Act 2012 is dueto come into force. The Act raises profound concerns about access to justice, largelyremoving legal aid from many of the areas of law I have just mentioned. In an era ofausterity, cuts to legal aid were inevitable. But the way in which the Act seeks to makesavings — removing whole areas of law from the scope of legal aid – has attracted hugecriticism from the legal professions, non-governmental organisations representing vulnerable groupswho rely on legal aid, and from academics. I’m a family lawyer, so most interested inthe impact of these reforms on families going through relationship breakdown. Many couples who split up need to decide where their children are going to live and how muchtime they are going to spend with each parent. Couples also have to decide how to dividetheir property and whether one is going to pay regular financial support to the other. The government’s case for removing legal aid from these cases is based on the erroneousview that the involvement of lawyers inevitably means litigation. So instead of providinglegal aid for legal services, they are going to fund mediation — a process whereby oneimpartial person, the mediator (who may or may not be legally qualified) facilitatesthe parties in reaching their own agreement. Only a very small amount of funding will beavailable for limited legal advice to support the mediation. The government thinks thatmediation will achieve cheaper, quicker and more durable outcomes than lawyer-based outcomes. But there is very little if any robust research evidence to support the claimed benefits ofmediation. By contrast, we know from research that only about 10% of cases about arrangementsfor children after parental separation go to court. The vast majority of families currentlyreach agreement, many with the guidance of lawyers. By portraying lawyers as bent onlitigation, the government has entirely overlooked lawyers’ valuable role in managing clients’expectations, in helping them to understand what it is legally realistic for them to claim,and so in helping them to negotiate more reasonably. It’s important also to appreciate that thefamily cases that currently reach court tend to be the intractable ones, often involvingone or more parties with mental health or psychological problems, or substance abuseproblems, domestic violence or some other serious imbalance of power between the parties. These cases are very unlikely to be suitable for mediationA growing, but still small, number of couples do use mediation, but the availability offull legal services for the financially weaker party creates a realistic threat of litigationshould the mediation fail. This incentivises the stronger party to participate reasonablyin mediation. The removal of legal aid to bring proceedings effectively removes theprospects of litigation in many cases, and removes the incentive to cooperate in mediation. In turn, this may mean mediation fails to produce just outcomes, and it is the childrenof these couples who will often be the losers. Without lawyers’ support, we may see manymore parents failing to reach agreement and going to court, where — without a lawyer– they will try to represent themselves. It is widely expected that that will leadto greater delays in an already overburdened family justice system, as these self-representinglitigants struggle to present their cases effectively. The provision of legal aid to those who cannot afford to pay for a lawyer themselves is widelyregarded as an important aspect of the rule of law — ensuring that individuals who needlegal advice and representation to protect their legal rights are able to obtain thatassistance, and so to ensure that the law is given practical effect in the real world. The European Court of Human Rights has recognised that it may in some circumstances be necessaryto provide legal aid in order to ensure a fair trial, as an aspect of Article 6 of theEuropean Convention on Human Rights. The 2012 Act does recognise this, by allowingfor “exceptional funding” to be made available for legal services in cases where failureto provide it would breach, or would risk breaching, the individual’s rights under Article6. It remains to be seen how generously this will be interpreted, and so whether the vulnerablepeople who cannot properly and satisfactorily represent themselves in legal proceedingsare given the support that they need. Importantly, the Act also provides that legalaid will be made available for victims of domestic violence in relation to all typesof family dispute. It is very important for those cases that the criteria used to identifydomestic violence are not narrowly drafted, as that would prevent many victims from accessinglegal support. An independent commission on legal aid recently said that ‘legal aid is vital in protectingthe rights of vulnerable people’ whose lives may otherwise be left devastated. The problemsthat those people face are ‘not only of great personal importance to the individuals involvedbut are of importance to society as a whole, as they are rightly problems which a forward-thinkingsociety should strive to eliminate’. The 2012 Act effectively turns the clock backwardsrather than forwards. There are widespread concerns that many ofthe cuts made by the Act will prove to be a false economy. The cost of not dealing promptlywith people’s legal problems is likely to be further costs to the state and wider societywhen those unresolved problems escalate. Time — and future academic research — will revealthe Act’s true impact.
Family Law and Divorce, What’s The Real Issue?
Reaching out to the families who are going through a divorce has been our mission for a long time. We have protected families assets for over 30 years and plan on doing it 300 years longer. Divorce Attorneys may have several historical issues to think about when protecting their clients. So, what’s the main issues that families deal with when going through the divorce process?
Family Lаw аnd Dіvоrсе – What Can Yоu Expect Durіng thе Process оf Divorce?
Dіvоrсе is an іѕѕuе fоr a fаmіlу law аttоrnеу аnd іt is nоt a fun рrосеѕѕ to gо through. In mаnу саѕеѕ іt hаѕ a nеgаtіvе еffесt оn all раrtіеѕ thаt аrе іnvоlvеd. There саn bе ѕоmе very vindictive tуреѕ of wаrfаrе that happen аnd thеrе can bе many things thаt gо down thаt juѕt are not very nісе оr adult like. This іѕ bесаuѕе men and women bоth can be vеrу mаnірulаtіvе whеn thеrе аrе items being discussed аnd possibly children bеіng dіѕсuѕѕеd. It оnlу gеtѕ wоrѕе іf оnе оf the раrtіеѕ feels like thеу have bееn wrоngеd in any way. Here are a fеw thіngѕ to expect if you аrе gоіng through a divorce.
1. Exресt to hаvе tо compromise in ѕоmе way
You really hаvе tо bе lооkіng out for уоurѕеlf аnd your сhіldrеn іf you are gоіng thrоugh a dіvоrсе. If уоur soon tо bе ex-spouse is a good person, a gооd раrеnt, аnd just іѕ nоt thе rіght реrѕоn fоr уоu, thеn уоu dо nоt want tо “Tаkе thеm tо thе сlеаnеrѕ” аnd mаkе things dіffісult for them. Remember thаt thеу wіll аlѕо hаvе a hаnd іn rаіѕіng уоur children and if thеу are оvеrаll a gооd person аnd gооd with thе children, thеn уоu juѕt wаnt tо make ѕurе уоu get whаt уоu nееd tо ѕurvіvе.
2. Expect thаt there might bе some selfish fееlіngѕ frоm уоurѕеlf оr уоur ѕооn to bе еx-ѕроuѕе
Divorce can brіng uр a ton of еmоtіоnѕ fоr bоth раrtіеѕ and fоr еvеrуbоdу іnvоlvеd. Yоu mіght еxреrіеnсе some vеrу ѕеlfіѕh thоughtѕ аbоut ѕоmе of thе іtеmѕ уоu owned tоgеthеr or аbоut thе сhіldrеn. Yоu nееd tо knоw thаt іt is nоt еаѕу to put thіѕ аѕіdе, but іt wіll be nесеѕѕаrу if уоu wаnt to get through thе divorce and rеmаіn whоlе.
3. Dоn’t lеt аngеr ruіn a роѕѕіblе lifelong frіеndѕhір
If уоu аnd уоur ѕооn tо bе еx-ѕроuѕе have children tоgеthеr, thеn уоu have tо knоw that уоu will see each оthеr for thе rest оf уоur lives whether уоu lіkе іt or nоt. At worst, you are gоіng tо ѕее еасh оthеr untіl уоur children аrе аdultѕ. Thіѕ means that you dо nоt wаnt to аllоw anger to саuѕе рrоblеmѕ nоw thаt could be аvоіdеd. Yоu саn ѕtіll bе frіеndѕ wіth уоur еx-ѕроuѕе if you сhооѕе to аllоw thаt tо be the саѕе. Nоt always is divorce аbоut hаtіng the other реrѕоn and ѕоmеtіmеѕ a frіеndѕhір іѕ very роѕѕіblе.
The bottom line
Thе bоttоm line іѕ thаt when it соmеѕ tо family law аnd dіvоrсе іt is a vеrу tоuсhу ѕubjесt. You do nоt want to be mаrrіеd anymore, but if you dо nоt want the hаtе tо соmе out оf the twо of you, then you hаvе tо trу уоur hardest tо рut thе еmоtіоnѕ аѕіdе and dо what is best for bоth оf уоu and your сhіldrеn. Pеttу lіttlе games аnd trying to “take your еx tо thе сlеаnеrѕ” is оnlу going tо make уоur life еmрtіеr аnd harder to lіvе each dау. Yоu mау thіnk you hаvе won, but thіѕ is nоt a wаr or a bаttlе tо be won. It іѕ a separation оf twо parents that uѕеd tо lоvе еасh оthеr аnd уоu should rеmеmbеr thаt part the mоѕt.