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Bowie Maryland Legal Blog

How should I dress for my custody hearing?

While it might seem like an unimportant factor in winning a child custody case, how you dress on the day of the hearing can have a real impact on your chances of success. The clothes you wear will make an impression on the judge before you even begin speaking, which is why attorneys urge their clients to dress correctly. To help you do so, Very Well Family offers the following tips. 

Piercings & tattoos

AI in health care raises ethical questions

If you are like a lot of people in Maryland, you are aware of the continued impact that emerging technologies are having on our everyday lives. From in-home devices that can turn lights or radios on and off to autonomous vehicles and more, computers are involved in multiple aspects of daily living. When it comes to health care, advances like artificial intelligence and machine learning are today often used in systems that facilitate diagnosis and even treatment recommendations.

As reported by Forbes, the use of these technologies has raised some ethical questions, especially concerning the options for patients if and when a medical mistake may be linked to these systems. There is as of yet little to no regulation over what technologies can be used in health care and how they should be used. Such regulation is often spurred by legal precedence but there is little to none of that yet, either.

Pedestrian safety tips

With summer just around the corner, more people in Maryland are apt to be out and about on foot. This can be a nice perk to the warmer weather but it can also increase a person's risk of being hit as a pedestrian by a car, truck or other vehicle. The fact of the matter is that anyone can be a pedestrian at some time, even if that is walking from a parked vehicle across a lot to get into the grocery store to do some shopping.

The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration records show that in 2017, nearly 6,000 people were killed on foot across the United States. That averages out to one pedestrian death every 88 minutes. Taking safety seriously is something everyone should do when they are out of their vehicles and in the vicinity of motor vehicles.

Maryland crash results in deaths of 1 adult, 3 children

Four people have died and three more received injuries as a result of a collision between a car and a pickup truck that occurred in Cecil County, Maryland, last Thursday evening. Those who lost their lives were all occupants of the car, the driver of which lost control for reasons that are not entirely clear. A four-year-old boy and 34-year-old man died at the scene, while a nine-year-old boy and 10-year-old girl succumbed to their injuries following transportation to a hospital. 

Three helicopters responded to the scene and served to transport three critically injured occupants to the hospital. One of these was the 53-year-old female driver of the car, another was a 13-year-old boy and the third was the nine-year-old boy who later died at the facility. Current information about the condition of those injured is not available. The 24-year-old male driver of the pickup also required transportation to the hospital, but his injuries were not life-threatening. 

US maternal mortality rate unacceptable

Living in a developed country should allow pregnant and new mothers in Maryland to feel secure about their health care and the care their babies receive when in the womb and after birth. Unfortunately, the United States has been experiencing an increase in the number of women dying during pregnancy, childbirth and in the first year after giving birth. For a while now, health care professionals have been blaming the mothers themselves for this problem. A new report sheds some new light on the matter, however.

As reported by USA Today, approximately 700 women die every year in the United States from pregnancy- and childbirth-related complications. Those deaths were split relatively evenly between deaths during pregnancy, deaths during labor and delivery, and deaths that took place up to 12 months after delivery. More than 50,000 women experience some form of serious complication during these times.

What is asset valuation?

One of the most important things in a high-asset divorce is properly figuring out your net worth as a couple. The Maryland court will expect that you do a complete job of determining the value of all your assets so they can be properly divided. This is where asset valuation comes in.

According to AICPA, asset valuation is determining how much your assets are worth. You probably have a variety of assets, some of which may have varying values. This includes retirement accounts and stocks that have values that could go up and down. Then, there are assets with set values or values that change gradually. A vehicle, for example, would have a slowly changing value.

Can illegal turns harm you?

As a resident of Maryland, you likely spend a decent amount of time on the road throughout the week. Poor driving behaviors can put you at risk any time you go out, and this includes drivers taking risks by making illegal turns.

What are illegal turns, exactly? It's any turn you make that is banned by law. FindLaw takes a look at one type in particular: illegal U-turns. These turns puts people on the road at risk by introducing a vehicle into the flow of traffic where there shouldn't have been one. Drivers are unprepared for this new obstacle and may not see the new car in time to slow down or stop, resulting in rear-end crashes.

Do angry drivers pose a risk to motorists on the road?

If you have ever had a case of road rage while traveling in Maryland traffic, you are not alone. In fact, up to 80% of Americans admit that they have experienced road rage at some point during the last year. There is no doubt that getting stuck behind a slow driver or in traffic when you are late for a meeting or an appointment is frustrating. However, road rage can cause people to engage in dangerous driving practices that may lead to a serious car accident. It is important to refrain from engaging in these behaviors and to be on the lookout for other motorists who are driving dangerously, as they may put other peoples’ lives at risk.

According to the Insurance Information Institute, aggressive driving behaviors may include the following:

Cyclists and motorists need to share the road

As temperatures gets warmer in Maryland, more people are out and about on their bikes. Whether they are commuting, going out for a Saturday afternoon ride or training for an upcoming race, cyclists present a risk on the road because motorists do not always know how to share the road with bicycles. There are things both drivers of vehicles and cyclists can do to minimize accidents.

According to the Metropolitan Police Department, cyclist and pedestrian fatalities make up 23% of traffic-related fatal accidents in the area, and that thousands of bicyclists retain injuries from crashes on a yearly basis. Because of the size of bicycles, motorists should be overly cautious when riding in their presence. They should look carefully for bikes before backing up or turning at intersections. They should also look before opening their doors and allow for extra room when passing cyclists.

Can activate military service members stop a divorce?

Virginia law requires personal service of divorce orders on members of the military. If you were unable to respond to a divorce action by a spouse, the statute could protect you from an automatic divorce — something you may have heard described as a default judgment.

This could be an important safeguard if you were not in favor of the divorce, or if you believe that you would benefit from mediation or another form of alternative dispute resolution. There are also other ways to protect your rights.

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