Why Seatbelts Still Matter in the Backseat?
A car accident can happen in the blink of an eye and seatbelts are an essential safety device that can save lives. Unfortunately, it’s often thought that accident injuries are less likely to affect passengers in the backseat. The data show that when a car accident occurs in Glen Burnie or Severn, unbuckled passengers are just as likely to sustain injuries or be killed in the backseat as they are in the front seat.
Watch this video to get the facts on accident injury prevention. It discusses a study that evaluated car crash deaths during 2013. The study found that over half of all backseat passengers who were killed in these crashes were not wearing their seatbelts. About one-fifth of passengers resist buckling up-a figure that grows even worse among taxi passengers.
Do You Need a Separation Agreement?
Maryland divorce law requires some divorcing spouses to undergo 12 consecutive months of legal separation before an absolute divorce can be granted. When you talk to a divorce lawyer in Glen Burnie or Severn, you can find out whether you may have grounds to divorce sooner than this or if you need a separation agreement. A legal separation is not the same as a divorce; separated spouses are still legally married . However, the separation agreement is still a legally binding document that can resolve the same issues that arise during a divorce, such as a child custody and property division.
During the 12 consecutive months of separation, the spouses must maintain separate residences and abstain from sexual relations with each other. If these conditions are breached, then the period of separation must begin again if the spouses are still intent on divorcing. There is no requirement to finalize the divorce; a legal separation may end in reunification.
Tips for Preparing for Your Consultation with Your DUI Attorney
Your initial meeting with your DUI attorney in Glen Burnie or Severn may take place while you are in custody or after you have been released. Since DUI cases are time-sensitive, it’s important to meet with your attorney as soon as possible. However, you should take a few minutes to prepare so that your attorney can thoroughly evaluate your case.
Create a Concise Summary
The stress of the arrest can make it difficult to think clearly and you may quickly begin to forget important details. It’s important to write down your side of the story promptly. Be completely honest in your summary of the events; being less than truthful with your lawyer can compromise the outcome of your case. Your attorney will need to know the key facts of the case, such as the reason the police officer pulled you over, the way you interacted with the officer, and the responses you gave to the officer’s questions.
Write Down Your Questions
The criminal justice system can be confusing for defendants. You may have questions about the potential penalties if you are convicted and you may be wondering about the next steps in the legal process. You might also be curious to know exactly how your lawyer plans to approach your case and what your chances are of securing a favorable outcome. Write down all of your questions in order of priority.
Make a List of Witnesses
Write down the full names and contact information of all parties involved with your case. This includes anyone else who was in the car with you and anyone you may have seen prior to getting in the car.
Consider Your Goals
You might think that the goal of a defendant in a DUI case would be obvious, but there are more outcomes to consider than the possibility of an acquittal. Many cases involve plea deals. A plea bargain would allow you to avoid a trial; you would agree to plead guilty in the hopes of having the charges reduced and getting a lesser sentence.
Determining Who Is Responsible After a Personal Injury Claim
Personal injury cases such as commercial truck accidents can be quite complex. After a crash occurs, it’s important to contact a big rig accident lawyer serving Glen Burnie and Severn because statutes of limitations apply to filing a big rig accident lawsuit. Your lawyer will review the facts of the case and examine all available evidence to identify the parties that may be named as the defendants. In a case that involves a big rig accident , it is not unusual to have multiple defendants.
Truck drivers are frequently named as the defendants in big rig accident lawsuits. To hold a truck driver liable, your attorney must prove that he or she breached a duty to exercise reasonable caution while behind the wheel. Negligence can come in many forms, such as using illicit recreational substances or consuming alcohol before operating a truck. Taking legitimately prescribed medications might even constitute negligence if those medications are known to cause delayed reaction times and impaired judgment. A truck driver might also be found negligent if he or she operated the truck in an unsafe manner, such as by speeding, failing to merge into traffic safely, failing to navigate intersections safely, or otherwise violating traffic rules. Driver distraction is a major problem on the nation’s roadways and truck drivers are not immune to it. Even professional drivers may give in to the temptation to use a cellphone while driving or otherwise engage in distracting activities.
Commercial transportation is an inherently dangerous industry. Because of this, truck drivers and the companies that employ them are required to adhere to strict safety standards. If a trucking company violates those standards, the truck accident lawsuit may name that company as a defendant, perhaps in addition to the truck driver. In these types of personal injury cases, a truck driver’s logbook is often a key piece of evidence. The logbook may establish that the truck driver failed to take the required breaks, perhaps because of the company’s policies on timely deliveries and pick-ups.
Another possible defendant is the manufacturer of the truck or any of its parts. Big rig accidents may be caused by defective brakes, tires, or other components. For the safety of everyone on the roadway, it’s essential that commercial trucks are in good working order.
What Happens When You Fail a Sobriety Test?
Sobriety Test DUI Lawyers in Severn, MD
Being pulled over by a police officer and undergoing a sobriety test is never a pleasant experience. The Law Offices of William C. Trevillian represent clients who have failed a sobriety test in Severn, MD. Our DUI lawyers know that field sobriety tests and blood alcohol tests are very different. If an officer pulls you over in Maryland on suspicion of driving under the influence, they may ask you to walk heel-to-toe in a straight line, stand on one foot while counting, or perform similar tasks. These field sobriety tests are designed to make people fail, and entirely sober people often fail them because they are nervous or not used to performing such tasks. Field sobriety tests are used to gather evidence to be used against you during DUI proceedings. The good news is that drivers can refuse to take field sobriety tests without fear of additional legal penalties or other consequences, and our attorneys represent clients who have been charged with failing a sobriety test. Learn more and get in touch with us today for a free consultation.
Common Reasons for Failing a Field Sobriety Test
Because field sobriety tests are easy to fail even when you are sober, and there is no legal mandate that drivers consent to them, our DUI lawyers typically advise our clients against taking these tests. If you do consent to a field sobriety test and fail it, it will only serve as further evidence against you in court. Saying no to a field sobriety test will not result in a field sobriety test penalty. Police officers will perform field sobriety tests in accordance with the manual from the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA). Some of the many reasons you may perform poorly on a field sobriety test include:
- Physical disabilities
- Medical conditions
- Effects of prescription medication
What Happens if You Perform Poorly on a Field Sobriety Test?
You are innocent until proven guilty, and performing poorly on a sobriety test does not necessarily result in a guilty verdict. An experienced and aggressive DUI attorney from The Law Offices of William Trevillian can help you fight against your allegations. You might be able to show why you performed poorly due to a preexisting condition and attack the reliability of the tests.
Failing a Field Sobriety Test May Lead to a DUI Arrest
Police need probable cause to lawfully arrest you for a DUI. The evidence that the police need to prove you were under the influence of drugs or alcohol while operating your vehicle is often a field sobriety test. There are three standardized tests that are said to be accurate predictors of a driver’s blood alcohol concentration (BAC) according to the NHTSA. Those tests are the horizontal gaze nystagmus (HGN), walk and turn, and one-leg stand. Failing one of these tests is supposed to indicate that you likely have a BAC of at least 0.1%, which makes it illegal to operate a motor vehicle. Poor performance on an FST test can give an officer probable cause to arrest you for driving under the influence.
How Failed Sobriety Tests Can Lead to DUI Convictions
As a driver, how you perform during a field sobriety test can become a factor at your DUI trial. In every state, including Maryland, drivers can be convicted for DUIs if they have a BAC above the legal limit or were impaired by drugs or alcohol. The prosecutors must prove your BAC or impairment at the DUI trial. The prosecution typically proves BAC by using blood or breath test results. While failed field sobriety tests can be relevant to providing a BAC level, they are commonly used in DUI trials when the prosecution is trying to prove actual driving impairment. The arresting officer may testify in court about how you as a driver performed on your tests. In other cases, the prosecutor can show the jurors a video of you performing your field sobriety tests.
Field Sobriety Tests in Maryland
Being pulled over driving in Severn or Anne Arundel County can be a scary situation. The state of Maryland has an implied consent law as it relates to undergoing preliminary breath tests if you are stopped for suspicion of driving under the influence. However, there is no penalty if you refuse to submit to a field sobriety test. These tests are completely voluntary, and there will be no penalty against your license or in court.
Get Your Free DUI Consultation Today
The experienced attorneys at The Law Offices of William Trevillian are here to help if you’ve been charged with a DUI or failed a field sobriety test. Our criminal, family, and personal injury attorneys can represent you in many areas, including bankruptcy, DUI and DWI, car accident injuries, probate and estate, workers’ compensation, and more. Contact us today to request a free consultation so we can get started on your case.
What to Expect When You Attend an MVA Hearing?
If you’ve been charged with a DUI in the Glen Burnie or Severn areas, you can expect your driver’s license to be suspended. You can also have your license suspended if you refuse to take a chemical test. When the police officer confiscates your driver’s license, he or she will issue a temporary license known as a DR-15 form. However, the temporary license will not remain valid for long. You’ll need to contact a DUI lawyer immediately. Your DUI attorney can request a Motor Vehicle Administration (MVA) hearing and provide legal representation.
Requesting the Hearing
After being issued an Order of Suspension of your driver’s license, you must request an MVA hearing within 10 days or your driver’s license will be suspended. Your request for a hearing must be made in writing. Your DUI lawyer can prepare this request and file it, along with the filing fee. MVA hearings are scheduled about four to six weeks after the date of the request. You will receive a notification in the mail of your scheduled hearing. Be sure to immediately let your attorney know when you’ve received this notification.
Appearing at the Hearing
The MVA hearing is not like a typical hearing at a courtroom. It is held at the Office of Administrative Hearings (OAH) before an administrative law judge. You, your attorney, and the judge will be present, but the MVA does not send a representative. Although these administrative hearings are far less formal than court proceedings, it’s still important to conduct yourself with respect and to dress in a professional manner. Many defendants make the mistake of approaching these hearings in a manner that is far too informal. The hearing will cover the paper documentation submitted by the MVA. Then, your attorney may contest the evidence submitted by the MVA and argue in favor of your ability to retain your driving privileges.
Receiving the Decision
You will receive a copy of the administrative law judge’s decision. If your license is suspended, you must surrender it to the judge or to an MVA branch office. You do have the option of appealing the decision if it is not in your favor.
Car Accident Injuries: Traumatic Brain Injuries
Tips for Preparing for Your Consultation with Your DUI Attorney
Car Accident Injuries: Traumatic Brain Injuries
A car accident can easily injure one of the most delicate parts of the body-the brain. If you’ve been involved in a car accident in Severn or Glen Burnie, it’s important to seek medical attention promptly and discuss your injuries with a car accident lawyer . A traumatic brain injury (TBI) may require weeks of recovery, during which time you’ll have to remain out of work and avoid doing many daily activities.
When you watch this video, you’ll learn about the common signs and symptoms of brain injuries. Victims of car accidents may lose consciousness if the brain sustains damage, but others may not pinpoint their symptoms until a few weeks after the crash. A brain injury can cause dizziness, nausea, memory impairment, cognitive impairment, blurry vision, and headaches. It can even lead to changes in personality and behavior, and may contribute to long-term problems like Alzheimer’s disease or Parkinson’s.
Do You Have Grounds to File for a Fault Divorce?
Maryland has stricter divorce laws than many other states. In many cases, it’s necessary to prove that a person has fault-based grounds for an absolute divorce if a 12-month legal separation is not desirable. Speak with a divorce lawyer in Glen Burnie or Severn about your particular situation to find out if you may be able to prove a fault basis for divorce.
Infidelity is a common reason for divorce, but many spouses hesitate to seek a fault-based divorce because they believe that adultery is difficult to prove. It can sometimes be challenging to prove adultery, but it is certainly not impossible. All your divorce lawyer needs to prove is that your spouse had the disposition and the opportunity to engage in intercourse outside of marriage; it isn’t necessary to provide definitive documentation of sexual intercourse. For example, a private investigator may take photos of public displays of affection between your spouse and another person. This proves the disposition to commit adultery. Testimony may be admitted to show that your spouse entered the other person’s dwelling and did not leave until the following morning. This proves the opportunity for adultery.
Under Maryland divorce law, desertion may be “actual” or “constructive.” Actual desertion occurs when a spouse leaves the marital home without a justifiable reason. Constructive desertion involves being justified in leaving the marital home, in which case, the spouse who leaves is deserted.
Cruelty of treatment and vicious conduct often involves acts of physical violence committed against a spouse or the minor child. Cruelty may be proven with medical records, police reports, and photographs of injuries. However, cruelty of treatment can also involve emotional or verbal abuse. Cruelty can refer to a pattern of abusive language that is severe enough to threaten the well-being of the other spouse.
A fault-based divorce based on a criminal conviction is among the easiest to prove. All that’s needed is the proper paperwork to prove that your spouse was convicted of a crime and has received either an indeterminate sentence or a sentence of more than three years. At the time of filing for divorce, the spouse must have been incarcerated for 12 months.
What to Do if Your License Is Confiscated in a DUI Stop?
If you’re pulled over on suspicion of DUI in Glen Burnie or Severn, the police officer can confiscate your driver’s license. When this happens, he or she will issue you a paper license, which is only valid for the next 45 days. If you do not act quickly enough, you are facing a suspension of your driving privileges. Get in touch with a defense attorney as soon as possible after being charged with DUI. Your criminal defense lawyer will walk you through the process of requesting an administrative hearing and, of course, he or she will represent your best interests at this hearing. You must request this hearing within 10 days.
The hearing may be scheduled after the 45-day period has expired. However, if you request a hearing within the 10-day period, you can receive an extension of the paper license. This allows you to retain your driving privileges while you await the hearing. However, even if your license is indeed suspended, your DUI attorney may be able to help you obtain a work-restricted driver’s license to allow you to retain your employment.
Understanding Catastrophic Injuries and Car Accident Lawsuits
Moving forward from a car accident is always difficult. The car accident survivor’s health is the top priority, but other obstacles include the damage inflicted on the car and the lost wages the survivor is likely to suffer. When a survivor’s injuries are catastrophic, recovering from a wreck is particularly challenging. If you or a loved one has been diagnosed with catastrophic injuries, you should consult a car accident lawyer in Glen Burnie or Severn immediately for legal guidance.
Defining Catastrophic Injuries
All car accident injuries are undesirable, but catastrophic injuries are on a different level. They are broadly defined as severe injuries that inflict long-term or permanent bodily impairment or disfigurement. Catastrophic injuries will typically involve a lengthy period of recovery and extensive medical treatment, such as multiple surgeries. Some people with catastrophic injuries require a lifetime of medical and personal care. Some examples of catastrophic injuries that a car accident may inflict include traumatic amputations, permanent loss of vision, severe and extensive scarring, traumatic brain injuries (TBIs), and spinal cord injuries. Spinal cord injuries in particular can be devastating because they often involve a degree of paralysis, which is irreversible.
Before filing a personal injury lawsuit, the attorney must identify and calculate the plaintiff’s damages or losses. These calculations will inform the amount of money that the lawsuit specifies. It may not be possible to develop an accurate estimate of a plaintiff’s damages right after the accident. The plaintiff may first undergo extensive medical treatment and try to recover to the maximum extent that is possible. Then, the attorney can add up all of the plaintiff’s economic damages, which include medical bills, medication costs, and similar expenses. The attorney will also develop an estimate of the medical costs the plaintiff can expect to incur over his or her lifetime. Then, the attorney can calculate the plaintiff’s non-economic damages, such as pain and suffering.
In any personal injury lawsuit, it’s necessary for the attorney to gather evidence and argue the plaintiff’s case in court. In a catastrophic injury case, the attorney must not only prove that the defendant is liable for the plaintiff’s injuries, but also prove the extent of the injuries. It may be necessary to have an expert witness testify as to the future medical and personal needs of the plaintiff.