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Bowie Maryland Legal Blog

Collision sends one vehicle into group of students

When people in Maryland send their children off to catch the school bus in the morning, they expect that the kids will arrive safely at school and then safely back at home later that day. If a problem would ever occur, parents would most likely assume that it would happen once their children were on the bus, not while they were standing on a street corner waiting for the bus. However, an accident can happen anytime and anywhere, including on a street corner. An example of this can be seen in an incident that happened recently in Aspen Hill.

As reported by WTOP, the incident took place at approximately 7:00 a.m. on a weekday morning when a group of high school students were innocently waiting for the school bus to pick them up and take them to school for the day. That never happened. Instead, the four in the group found themselves hit by a vehicle that left the roadway after colliding with another vehicle.

New divorce laws simplify process for military couples

The divorce process was frustrating for most Maryland couples not just because of the emotional strain, but also because of the state’s requirements to get them done. Prior to October, divorcees in Maryland had to live apart for at least 12 months and both had to show up for the final hearing. It was long and tedious, as these spouses just want to move on with their lives and sign the papers as soon as they can. This was even harder for military couples given the varying nature of their living conditions.

Now that October 1 has passed, two new laws have come into place that makes the process significantly easier and quicker for separating couples in Maryland. If you and your spouse are planning to divorce in the near future, you should know about these new bills so you can implement them in your preparations.

Is joint-custody a better option?

Whether you have recently filed for divorce or you are simply considering the idea, there are many issues that arise. One of the most important is that of child custody and how you and your spouse will continue raising your children once you are separated. Traditionally, the child is put in the sole physical custody of one parent, and the non-custodial parent is given a visitation schedule. However, studies show that children who are raised in joint-custody arrangements may have advantages over those who are raised in sole-custody households.

Children need both their mother and father to develop crucial life skills. Each parent provides something that the other parent does not. For example, the Father Involvement Research Alliance reports that fathers bring children a sense of competition, achievement and independence. Mothers, on the other hand, teach children the importance of working together, and treating others are equals while giving them a sense of security.

One dead in three-vehicle crash on freeway

Most people in Maryland have at some time or another passed by a recent accident on the freeway or another road. Fortunately, many cases like this seem to involve only damage to vehicles and no immediate or evident harm to the people in them. However, this does not mean that great care is not still important when dealing with these crashes.

As reported by CBS Baltimore, two vehicles had collided on a stretch of Interstate 97 and the drivers had gotten out of their respective vehicles. This was likely done so that each could examine the damage, take photos and exchange their information as would be a normal course of events after an accident. During this process, a third vehicle is said to have hit both already crashed vehicles and both drivers.

How can I make my co-parenting experience easier?

Having the right mindset is key to succeeding in many areas of life, but when you are going through a difficult arrangement, such as co-parenting with a former spouse, suddenly it is not easy to stay upbeat and focused. However, making sure your child has a healthy upbringing in Maryland even if you and your spouse are no longer together is important for your offspring’s future. That is why you should separate your ex-spouse’s performance as a wife or husband from the spouse’s ability to function as a parent.

As explains, you may have had serious issues with your spouse while married, but that does not mean your spouse cannot be a good parent. In other words, your marriage might have failed, but that does not mean the parenting of both you and your ex has failed also. In many instances, children benefit from continuous interaction with both parents, so you want to include your former spouse in your children’s life as much as possible.

Understanding informed consent in health care

When a person in Maryland goes to the doctor, they should always know that it is their choice as to what, if any, treatments they undergo or medications they take. As explained by the American Medical Association, except in extreme emergencies, health care is not to be administered to a person without their approval or the approval of an appropriate representative acting on the patient's behalf. This is called informed consent.

Informed consent is actually a matter of both law and ethics in the medical world and there are a few specific factors that must be present for it to be said that a patient was properly informed and provided consent. Certainly important is any signature on a document authorizing treatment. However, such a signature may not be sufficient if the person who signed the document was not capable of making an informed decision.

Three things to do in the months leading up to a divorce

Divorce is not something that anybody goes into marriage planning on. However, as MarketWatch reports, about 2 million divorces are filed in the United States each year and about half of all marriages ultimately end in divorce. With such daunting statistics, it is only prudent for those who feel as though their marriage may be coming to an end to prepare beforehand. Divorce is a major and often stressful undertaking, but doing these three things can help mitigate some of the pressure.

Keep copies of financial records

As USA Today notes, good recordkeeping can make all the difference between a relatively simple and painless divorce and a protracted and contested one. When both spouses are in possession of a complete record of the financial assets and liabilities that they own, then a lot of the guesswork about how much their marital estate is really worth is removed. As such, each spouse should ensure they have copies of all their financial records, including bank and credit card statements, income tax returns, pay stubs, insurance policies, retirement and investment accounts, and business-related statements.

When married business partners get divorced

Most people in Maryland would agree that a divorce regardless of the nature of the circumstances is never a simple experience. It tends to rock a person at the most fundamental level and even forces them to realign their hopes and dreams for the future. When a person getting divorced is married to their business partner, things can get even more complicated quickly. 

MarketWatch indicates that business-owning spouses who operate their companies together can benefit from creating either solid buy-sell agreements or even prenuptial agreements, or maybe even both. These documents can outline their wishes for how a business will be handled in a number of situations including divorce but also in the event of death or simply the wish of one person to leave the business to pursue other opportunities. Such agreements and documents essentially outline their exit strategies which is simply smart business even for partners who are not married to each other.

The difference between limited and absolute divorces in Maryland

You and your spouse decide that a separation will prove healthy and beneficial for you, your spouse and your children. Yet perhaps you and your spouse do not necessarily want to terminate your marriage altogether. In Maryland, two types of divorces exist. You and your spouse can determine whether each type proves best for your individual circumstances, and in doing so, you can file for separation without a permanent decree by the court.


Drunk driving death statistics in Maryland

Any person in Maryland who has been involved in an accident caused by a drunk driver knows how traumatic these experiences can be. When a loved one's life is taken due to the negligent decisions of an impaired driver, the challenges mount further. Despite widespread public awareness that driving after consuming alcohol is dangerous, too many people continue to do just this.

A new report from SafeWise reviews traffic fatality data to get a picture of how each state is doing in the fight against drunk driving. The Baltimore Sun reports that the report reviewed the number of people killed in drunk driving accidents across the nation and while certainly even one death is one death too many, Maryland fared better than most other states.

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