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Recent Blog Posts

Whiplash Injuries Can Have Serious Consequences

 Posted on February 24, 2023 in Personal Injury

Palo Alto Personal Injury LawyerIf you have never suffered a whiplash injury, you may be under the impression it is just a minor injury. However, whiplash can be a painful and complex injury, causing a variety of symptoms that leave the person who suffered the injury dealing with chronic pain and even neurological issues.

How Does Whiplash Occur

A whiplash injury can happen when there is a violent jerking of the neck, similar to the cracking of a whip. This jerking motion can damage ligaments, soft tissue, and even bones that are around the neck and upper back. Whiplash is typically diagnosed after the physician has run a series of imaging tests (X-rays, MRIs, and CAT scans) that rule out other injuries.

One of the most common causes of whiplash is vehicle accidents, however, any type of accident that causes whipping of the neck can result in damage.

Whiplash Classifications

When a person suffers a whiplash injury in an accident caused by the negligence or recklessness of another party, they may be entitled to damages for the losses they have suffered due to that injury. They may be entitled to financial compensation for medical expenses, loss of income, pain and suffering, and any future health issues the injury could cause.

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Do You Know What to Do and Not Do When You Are Stopped by Police?

 Posted on February 09, 2023 in Criminal Defense

San Jose criminal defense lawyerOne of the most stressful experiences a person can have is looking in the rearview mirror and realizing those blue flashing lights and that siren is meant for them. Any interaction with the police can be intimidating, even if you have done nothing wrong. If you find yourself in this position, there are important things you should remember in order to help prevent the event from escalating.

Just Breathe

It is entirely normal to become nervous when you are pulled over, even if you have done nothing wrong. But if you are acting nervous, the officer may suspect that you have indeed done something wrong and request to search your vehicle. This type of situation can quickly turn into criminal charges or even worse.

Your Rights

Regardless of why the officer pulled you over, you do have constitutional rights that protect you. You do have to identify yourself when asked by the officer, however, you do not have to agree to a search of your vehicle. If they continue to ask questions or they arrest you, make sure to tell the officer you want to speak with an attorney. At this point, the officer is not allowed to ask any more questions.

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Do You Qualify for the New Federal Marijuana Pardon Initiative?

 Posted on January 18, 2023 in Criminal Defense

San Jose drug crimes defense lawyerBeing convicted of any crime can have serious ramifications, but being convicted of a federal crime carries a heavy burden. One of the most inequitable areas of federal convictions revolves around federal marijuana-related offenses, especially given the changes the state of California has made regarding marijuana.

There is good news, however, for those with federal convictions in the form of a new initiative signed by President Biden in October 2022. This initiative will provide clemency for certain offenders to have their records expunged of their crimes and receive a presidential pardon.

The Federal Marijuana Pardon

As part of the Biden administration’s commitment to addressing the disproportionate impact that enforcement of cannabis laws has had on communities of color, the president introduced a three-step plan for pardoning federal convictions:

  1. Federal simple marijuana possession convictions will receive presidential pardons.

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New California Criminal Justice Laws Now in Effect

 Posted on January 06, 2023 in Criminal Defense

San Jose criminal defense lawyerJanuary 1st is not only the date many people choose to set resolutions, but it is also the date the state of California chooses as the effective date for many of the new laws that state lawmakers passed over the past several months. This year is no different. Included in the dozens of new state statutes are some key criminal laws that California citizens should be aware of. The following is a brief overview of those laws.

Alternatives to Incarceration

Under AB 2167, when an individual has been convicted of a crime, the courts are now required to consider other alternatives other than jail or prison as punishment. Lawmakers included wording in the statute that specifies their intent that the disposition of every criminal case in the state concludes with the least restrictive sentence possible. The goal is to reduce the number of people incarcerated in order to achieve better results when it comes to recidivism rates, reducing racial disparities, and better economic outcomes for those involved.

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How the Fourth Amendment Protects Can Result in Dismissal of Criminal Evidence

 Posted on December 22, 2022 in Criminal Defense

san jose criminal defense lawyerAlthough the media is often filled with stories about incidents where law enforcement overstepped their legal authority, there are laws in place to protect citizens when those misuse of powers occurs, especially if the citizen is charged with a crime as a result. One of the most important protections we have is the Fourth Amendment. This amendment protects from “unreasonable” searches by police. Read on to find out how this critical law can make a difference in your criminal case.

Obtaining a Warrant

The Fourth Amendment grants the right to citizens “to be secure in their persons, house, papers, and effects.” It protects against unreasonable search and seizures by police, meaning that an officer must have a warrant in order to perform a search. A warrant is a legal document issued by a judge that gives police the right to search, however, police are required to show probable cause why they think the search is necessary for obtaining evidence of a crime.

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New California Law Will Automatically Seal Many Criminal Records

 Posted on December 09, 2022 in Criminal Defense

 

santa clara crimnal defense lawyerCalifornia will soon be the first state in the nation that will automatically seal the majority of criminal records for those defendants who complete their sentences and avoid any future convictions. The new law is an extension of an earlier “Clean Slate” law that California passed in 2019 with the purpose of eliminating the criminal record roadblocks that many previously incarcerated people have in obtaining housing, jobs, education, and more.

Criminal Records Relief

It is often difficult for ex-offenders to successfully re-enter society with their criminal records hanging over their heads. In California, criminal record screenings are conducted by 80 percent of landlords, 90 percent of employers, and 60 percent of colleges and universities.

Under the new law, which will go into effect in July 2023, the arrest records and criminal convictions of people (on or after January 1, 2005) will automatically be sealed as long as they have not been convicted of a new felony offense for four years following the completion of their sentence. This automatic sealing also includes arrest records of people who were charged but not convicted.

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Common Kinds of Fraud Crimes in California

 Posted on November 23, 2022 in Criminal Defense

santa clara fraud defense lawyerPeople throughout California engage in a variety of business-related activities, so it is not uncommon for some individuals to occasionally face fraud accusations for certain actions they take. The commission of a fraud crime typically requires an alleged offender to obtain some kind of benefit to which they are not entitled and cause harm to an alleged victim.

The California Employment Development Department (EDD) actively encourages people to report fraud, and any person who is facing fraud allegations will want to be certain they retain legal counsel as soon as possible.

Frequently Committed Fraud Offenses in Santa Clara County

The term fraud includes a wide variety of criminal offenses. Some of the most common fraud crimes in California include, but are not limited to:

  • Welfare Fraud — Welfare fraud occurs when someone wrongfully obtains public assistance. This crime is prohibited under California Welfare and Institutions Code § 10980.

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California Property Crimes You Should Know About

 Posted on November 11, 2022 in Criminal Defense

san jose criminal defense lawyerProperty crimes generally refer to criminal offenses in which an alleged offender steals, destroys, or otherwise violates another party’s property rights. A conviction for a property crime in California can result in serious criminal penalties. While many property crimes may be misdemeanor offenses, several others can result in felony criminal charges. If you are facing property crime charges in California, seek the help of a San Jose, CA property crimes defense attorney.

Types of Property Crimes in Santa Clara County

The most common kinds of property crimes in California usually include:

  • Burglary — Under California Penal Code § 459, an alleged offender who enters another party’s property with intent to commit grand or petit larceny or any felony commits burglary. First-degree burglary involves burglary of residential structures while second-degree burglary crimes involve other types of structures. Convictions are punishable by up to six years in prison.

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Understanding Domestic Battery Charges in California

 Posted on October 24, 2022 in Criminal Defense

San Jose criminal defense attorneyThe stereotypical image that may come to mind when you hear “domestic violence” is of a man physically attacking a female romantic partner. While this form of domestic violence is fairly common, it is far from the only situation in which domestic battery may be charged. People of any gender may be charged with domestic battery, and the victim need not be a current romantic partner. Regardless of the specific set of circumstances leading up to a domestic battery arrest, the charge remains heavily stigmatized.

The collateral consequences associated with a domestic battery conviction may even be worse than the judicial consequences. You may face struggles similar to those a felon may face in finding a good job, securing educational opportunities, or even finding housing that is acceptable to you. If you have been accused of domestic violence, it is important to take the situation very seriously and find a skilled criminal defense lawyer. 

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Four Eligibility Requirements for PC 1000 Drug Diversion

 Posted on October 11, 2022 in Criminal Defense

Santa Clara drug crimes defense lawyerIf you are eligible for PC 1000, a pretrial diversion program for those with minor drug charges, it may provide an opportunity for you to keep your criminal record clean. For those who qualify, it may prove invaluable. If you successfully complete this diversion program, your charges will be dismissed. You will not have a conviction. To succeed in this program, you must commit to certain requirements, like seeking substance abuse treatment and staying clean and sober. There are also requirements for entering these programs. They are designed for people who use and possessed drugs and may benefit from treatment, not manufacturers or distributors.

For many eligible individuals, but not all, this will be their first interaction with the criminal justice system. If you believe that you are eligible for this drug diversion program, your attorney will likely advise you to take advantage of it in most situations. 

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