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New Jersey And Pennsylvania Legal Blog

Drinking and driving is more dangerous than ever

drunk-driving-police-car.jpgThe drinking habits of Americans have increased dramatically in the last 10 years, according to recent research published in JAMA Psychiatry. According to the authors of the study, one in every eight Americans can be classified as an alcoholic.

All forms of alcohol consumption have increased in the last decade. The increase in alcohol use and alcohol use disorder plays a part in traffic fatalities, which have risen over the last two consecutive years. About 30 percent of all traffic fatalities involve drunk driving.

Shoplifting In New Jersey -- What Will Happen to Me?

shoplifting 2.jpgOften times, shoplifting cases involve an individual being stopped by a loss prevention agent before actually leaving the store property with the unpaid merchandise. What most people don't realize is that you can still be charged, and convicted, of shoplifting even if you never make it through the exit.

Where Can I Get a Divorce?

divorce.jpgSpouses who are getting divorced sometimes ask whether they have to get divorced in the state in which they were married. The answer is no.

In order for someone to file for a Complaint for Divorce, the state in which they seek to file must have "jurisdiction". Typically, jurisdiction is acquired by one or both spouses who have lived in that particular state for a specific period of time immediately prior to filing a Complaint for Divorce. For instance, in New Jersey, the person filing a Complaint for Divorce (or his or her spouse) must have resided in New Jersey for at least one year prior to the filing. In Pennsylvania, the person filing or his or her spouse must have resided in Pennsylvania for at least six months immediately preceding the filing.

Keep Your Last Will and Testament Up to Date!

last will.jpgMany responsible people execute a Last Will & Testament, but unfortunately, many of those same people shove it in a drawer and forget about it for years, sometimes even decades. Failure to keep your Will up to date can lead to just as many problems as not having a Will at all.

Expungement May Become Easier in Pennsylvania

eraser.jpgExpungement, or "setting aside a criminal conviction," effectively erases an individual's criminal record to the public. When a record is expunged, information regarding arrests or convictions is not available in background checks. If you successfully expunge your record, when you apply for a loan, an apartment, or a job, the offense does not legally have to be disclosed.

However, law enforcement, the courts, and certain other government agencies can still access and consider an expunged conviction. Expungement does not apply in immigration or deportation proceedings or if you commit a crime after an expungement. Sealed records provide proof of a prior conviction, and they may be considered in sentencing.

Driving Without Insurance Can Result in Losing Your License and Jail Time

sus.jpgIn New Jersey, every owner of a registered motor vehicle or principally garaged motor vehicle is required to carry liability insurance. Liability insurance covers you in the event that you are liable in an accident resulting in bodily injury, death, or property damage to another person. If you forget to pay your premiums, or otherwise let your insurance coverage lapse, you will be violating the law. If the police determine you are driving without insurance, you will be given a summons to appear in municipal court. The penalties increase depending on the number of times you have violated the insurance requirement.

New "Opioid" Bill May Affect Your Prescription

The Pennsylvania House of Representatives may soon consider a bill that would restrict the ability of doctors to provide certain medications to patients who become injured at work.


The proposed law would create a "drug formulary" for prescription opioids for injured workers. In essence, injured workers would only have access to a limited set of prescription medications and treatments while receiving workers' compensation. This bill is meant to reduce the over-prescription of opioid pain killers to these types of patients.

What's Mine Is Yours: When Pre-Marital Real Estate Becomes Marital Property

martial home.jpgWith the growing trends towards lengthy engagements and living together before marriage, more and more couples are assuming "marriage-like" relationships before officially tying the knot. While this may work well at the time, if the parties do marry and subsequently divorce, the debate over when "my property" became "our property" can be tricky, particularly when it comes to the marital home. If a husband or wife bought a property prior to the marriage, that individual may think he or she is indisputably entitled to 100% of that property. However, in New Jersey, that is not necessarily the case, even if the party bought the house before the marriage or purchased it solely with his or her own money.

Protect Yourself from Underinsured and Uninsured Motorists

auto accident.jpgOne of the most vital aspects of owning an automobile is properly protecting yourself from the unexpected. Accidents can happen at any time, and often those accidents are not your fault. When you suffer serious injuries in an automobile accident, you have the option of suing the driver responsible for those injuries.

If you do choose to sue, the most you may recover from the liable driver is the maximum limits of the liability coverage he or she has paid for under his or her own automobile insurance policy. Under current laws, drivers can take to the roads with as little as $15,000 in liability coverage. Recovering such a small amount from the liable driver could leave you with little to no compensation for the physical, mental, and monetary damage caused.

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Phillipsburg, NJ 08865

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