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Lafayette Legal Blog

Your criminal record can affect your ability to win child custody

If you ask any family law judge in Louisiana what their responsibility is when deciding a heated custody dispute, they'll tell you that it's to make a decision that's in the child's best interests. Before deciding what's ideal for them, they'll often consider their gender, age, family relationships, school affiliations and even sometimes their own wishes. A judge will want to know about a mom's or dad's fitness to be a parent as well.

Before making a decision about custody, the judge may inquire about a mom's or dad's past problems with substance or alcohol abuse, domestic violence or other criminal offenses that they've been convicted of.

Louisiana gets another drop in compensation insurance rates

There are many pitfalls for even the most conscientious worker focusing on safety. Many jobs in Louisiana, such as short-haul trucking and industrial fishing, have some of the highest injury rates of industries around the country. The state is also a center of offshore drilling, a type of resource extraction with the highest death rate.

Workers' compensation is one protection that ensures employees can get financial help out of an unexpected injury on the job. Every state guarantees the right of injured and disabled workers to claim lost wages and help for medical expenses while they are recovering from a work injury.

A judge is to decide if the Bayou Bridge Pipeline moves forward

On Nov. 16, a Louisiana judge was slated to hold a preliminary hearing about the 162-mile pipeline that a privately-held fossil fuel company has already begun building across the Atchafalaya Basin and the southern part of the state. Both parties are fighting over whether the United States Constitution allows these types of companies to seize private citizen's property to install their pipelines.

Once finished, this pipeline is slated to connect the Dakota Access Pipeline directly to Louisiana refineries. Indigenous groups first voiced their opposition to this at Standing Rock in 2016.

How to start the divorce conversation

It's a big step to tell your spouse that you want to end the marriage. You know you want to, but how do you start that conversation?

First and foremost, stay calm. This is something you want to discuss in a relaxed setting over a cup of coffee, not something you want to yell at your spouse the next time you get angry. Try to have a respectful conversation where you just explain what you want and why. You can't control how your spouse reacts, but you can control how you present it.

Important insurance coverage for your business

It takes quite a lot of energy, dedication, time and commitment to run your own business. Many people risk all they've built in their business by not having the proper insurance policies protecting the company. Today, we will take a look at the insurance policies you should have to protect your business from the ground up in the event a lawsuit or other issue arises.

The very first policy you should purchase is liability insurance. This will cover your business from mistakes and failure to perform issues. This coverage is also known as errors and omissions. There is no one policy that covers all businesses or industries. The policy will be tailored to your industry.

Use prenuptial agreements to strengthen a marriage

Many couples are surprised to learn that prenuptial agreements can actually strengthen a marriage rather than weaken it, depending on the perspective and intentions of the partners who create the agreement in the first place. Like most legal tools, the intentions and understanding of the partners creating the agreement have much more to do with how it affects their relationship than the tool itself.

Couples who want to avoid financial conflicts in marriage should certainly consider creating a prenuptial agreement, even if they believe that divorce is not an option they want to consider. Many couples have cultural or religious expectations that their marriage must remain intact no matter what. They may decide to forego a prenuptial agreement because divorce is simply not on the table.

A blow to the head can ruin your work relationships

Our brains are both fragile and resilient, which can make a mild brain injury a very difficult injury to identify and understand. Although a brain may suffer an injury more easily than we expect, it may also continue to function despite the damage. These kinds of injuries may occur any time that a person receives a blow to the head, but the victim is not always aware that they suffered any serious harm. In fact, the victim may simply suffer through the symptoms without ever receiving a diagnosis or proper treatment, destroying many of their personal and professional relationships along the way.

Mild traumatic brain injuries, or TBIs, affect each victim differently because each person's brain is different. However, some the most common symptoms of a mild TBIs are a short temper and an inability to complete familiar tasks easily. To the untrained or unaware eye, this behavior can look just like an immature person acting out in their frustration, not the result of a serious brain injury that changes the victim without their permission.

Divorce does not have to be a lengthy, costly battle

If you are ready for divorce and know that your spouse is on the same page, then there is no need to put it off any longer. Depending on the nature of your marriage and the complexity of your divorce issues, you may be able to streamline the process with an uncontested divorce.

Uncontested divorce is a simple concept. As long as both parties can amicably agree on how to divide their property and deal with any other issues they need to address, they may be able to shorten the divorce process. They may also be able to keep the associated costs much lower than in a contested divorce.

You may have grounds to challenge your prenuptial agreement

Creating a prenuptial agreement is typically a wise choice for any partners entering into marriage. In broad strokes, this is because the law views marriage as a business partnership, and achieving divorce is very similar to dissolving a business. Whereas getting married only requires signing a few documents before a clerk, getting divorced involves dividing assets and liabilities in a way that is acceptable to a court. This does not even deal with the issues surrounding children, which courts don't allow prenuptial agreements to address.

Still, many spouses find that the prenuptial agreement they signed before their marriage no longer suits their needs, or may be unfairly restrictive. This is particularly true for spouses who did not carefully consider the terms of their agreement, or spouses who married each other when neither party had many assets or liabilities. Large life changes tend to shift our priorities, which a prenuptial agreement may not address fully.

Are homeowners liable for slip-and-fall injuries in their homes?

As we finish out the calendar year of 2018, the last several months are often filled with dangerous weather and house parties to celebrate holidays and professional achievements. Without fail, some of these parties involve someone slipping on a hazard and hurting themselves.

Most people may assume that the homeowner automatically bears legal responsibility for the injury, since the harm occurred in their home. While this is true sometimes, it is not true all of the time.

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