Should We Worry about Marijuana DUIs?

146967521The number of drivers with alcohol in their system has has gone down significantly while the number of drivers using marijuana has gone way up. Safety-wise this doesn’t seem to be a bad trade. A recent National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) study (.pdf) has found that drivers with THC in their blood are no more likely to be involved in car crashes than are drug-free drivers. Continue reading

Keep Cross-Examination Short (Unless You Shouldn’t)

153165013A successful evangelist once said about his sermons: “Nobody ever got religion after the first twenty minutes.” His time estimate may be wrong, but every evangelist and trial attorney has wrestled with the short attention span of their audiences. Continue reading

5 Things to Do to Prepare for Voir Dire

78724287When next faced with preparing for jury voir dire examination before trial, consider these five practical suggestions. Continue reading

Revenge Porn Victims Have New Rights

102733346In 2013 and again in 2015, California amended its disorderly conduct statute to include instances of “revenge porn.” See Pen C §647(j)(4). The first convictions are coming down with more likely to follow. Continue reading

They Know Computers But Not How to Help Your Case

183145432When corporate goes criminal, i.e., an investigation involving a corporation leads to a criminal case headed to trial, you often need computer forensic experts to testify about the evidence. Such experts know all about electronic devices and data storage and retrieval, but they don’t necessarily know how to clearly relay that knowledge. It’s up to you to prepare your computer forensics expert to testify effectively. Continue reading

Notice of Incarcerated Beneficiaries: No More Splitting “Heirs”

489194765The law requiring notice of incarcerated heirs has just been extended to beneficiaries, too. Practitioners have long recommended giving notice of at least those incarcerated beneficiaries who might take property by intestate succession. But now it’s the law.

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Defenders: Be Ready to Advise on the New Immigration Program

114392182The following is a guest blog post by Katherine Brady, a Senior Staff Attorney at the Immigrant Legal Resource Center in San Francisco.

On November 20, 2014 President Obama announced a new program—Deferred Action for Parental Accountability (DAPA)—that may help millions of undocumented immigrants who are parents of U.S. citizens or permanent residents. Qualifying applicants will get a temporary reprieve from deportation (currently set at three years), as well as an employment authorization document that will permit them to get a legal social security number. In California alone, over one million people may qualify for this program. Criminal defense lawyers will get a lot of questions about this program, because the main bar to eligibility is conviction of certain crimes.  Continue reading

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