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June 2014 Archives

How To Protect Assets In Divorce

Many divorce clients are concerned with asset protection.  Many others are also concerned with keeping an existing business going in the event of a divorce.  The best avenue is to protect a business with a prenuptial agreement.  A prenup is often the best way to avoid costly litigation and possible dissolution of your company.  Even though a company may have preexisted the marriage, there may be a marital portion associated therewith. In general, any asset which preexisted the marriage is considered the premarital, or non-marital, property of the owner.  A company, like many other assets, may change and evolve over the course of the marriage.  For example, if the company was a startup with nominal value at the time of the marriage and is now worth three million dollars, the increase in equity could likely be considered marital property.  Often, additional work, effort, expense, as well as influx of cash or debt will modify the nature of the asset. Other assets may also be considered a mixed in nature.  A mixed asset is one which has some non-marital component and some marital component.  If you own a piece of real estate outright prior to marriage and do no improvements and borrow no money against it during the marriage, it is essentially a non-marital asset. If, however, you rent it out, pay down some debt, do improvements or otherwise change the value, some or all of the property will be considered marital.  If there is both marital and nonmarital, it is considered mixed. Remember, it may be illegal to hide or conceal an asset during divorce discovery.  That said, it is perfectly legal to protect that asset and assure that it remains intact.  Retain an attorney before making any major decisions regarding your assets. Many family law attorneys have experience in social work, family litigation, with concentration in custody and other issues.  Some others also have a business degree and/or real business experience.  Choosing an attorney that understands the nature of a business and can assist in valuation of the business is essential in achieving a good outcome to your case. If you have questions or wish to further discuss your divorce and asset protection, contact the Bouldin Law Firm at mwbouldin2@gmail.com or call 581-MIKE; 859-581-6453.

Supreme Court Victory for Privacy Rights

The United States Supreme Court ruled in a unanimous decision yesterday, June 25, 2014, that cell phones cannot be searched by police without a warrant during an arrest.  This comes as a major victory for those advocacy right to privacy and opposed to police overreaching.  Reported today by MSNBCCNN, NY TimesWSJ and USA Today. The supreme court stated, "We cannot deny that our decision today will have an immediate impact on the ability of law enforcement to combat crime." emphasizing, "Privacy comes at a cost." This was written by Chief Justice John Roberts.  Those first amendment activists have applauded the decision as a major victory to individual rights. Under the law, police can search a person under arrest and whatever physical items are within their reach in order to find weapons and preserve evidence.  The ruling makes clear that this does not apply to the contents of a cellular phone or smart phone.  Other cases pending include NSA surveillance methods of phone and computers. Both beat police as well as investigating agencies have been routinely searching cellular phones in Northern Kentucky.  Due to the question of the law, many have not obtained search warrants.  Without permission of the owner or a proper search warrant, they have no legal right to search a smart phone or flip phone in order to determine if other crimes have been committed or to gain additional evidence regarding a crime. If you have quetions about the ruling or are facing criminal charges or investigation in Northern Kentucky, contact Michael Bouldin at mwbouldin2@gmail.com or call 581-MIKE; 859-581-6453. 

Help For DUI

Most people who get a DUI charge don't know the next step.  They simply throw their hands in the air and yell, "HELP!"  That is a good place to start in that DUI attorneys are here to help you through this trying and often complicated system Really, the system is set up for you to enter into court and plead guilty.  The officer, many times the jailers and the judge will tell you how easy it is to simply plead guilty.  DUH!  If you want a conviction for DUI on your permanent criminal record, a lengthy license suspension, possibility of incarceration, increased penalties for future violations, significant increase in insurance premiums, fines and court costs totaling nearly 1,000 or more.  You could also get pulled over for virtually any reason in the future and every officer will know you had a DUI.   Your figurative cry for HELP should start with a phone call to a criminal defense attorney.  The attorney can consult with you, determine your possible defenses to the charges and advise you how to best proceed.  if you are guilty and the facts are overwhelming, the attorney can attempt to negotiate a plea deal that will minimize the incarceration, minimize the fines and cost sand minimize the license suspension.  The attorney will seek alternative dispositions of your case and determine what issues are most important to you in the process.  He may also assist in assuring that you can receive hardship driving privileges if you are eligible. As an attorney handling DUI cases for nearly 20 years, there are many things that come secondhand that an uneducated defendant would not consider as options or possibilities.  Each case is unique and is handled so that every option is explored.  The choices remain that of the defendant of whether to go to trial, whether to plea and whether to request a jury or bench (judge) trial.  If you have been charged with DUI in Northern Kentucky, contact the Bouldin Law Firm office of Michael Bouldin at 859-581-6453 (581-MIKE) or email at mwbouldin2@gmail.com.

How Do I Find a Good Divorce Attorney?

Northern Kentucky divorce attorney Michael Bouldin has posted a video legal guide on how to choose an attorney for your divorce or custody case in the Commonwealth of Kentucky. A link to the video guide follows:  http://www.avvo.com/legal-guides/ugc/how-do-i-choose-a-ky-divorce-attorney?published=true   The video can also be found at the following: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=SbECcRn02No It is amazing how often potential clients come into my office knowing the answer that has been provided to them by friends, relatives or found on the internet.  It is not amazing that much of this perceived knowledge is incorrect.  It is important that you know your rights, know what to is occurring and have realistic expectations when going through a divorce or dissolution. When choosing an attorney, you should have trust and confidence that they have the ability to handle your case and that they will properly advise you as to your rights and responsibilities.  You should communicate freely with your lawyer and trust they know the law as well as can accurately predict how a judge is likely to rule. If you have questions about your divorce or custody case, you should consult with an attorney who has experience in the area and dealing with the judges in your jurisdiction.  In Northern Kentucky counties of Boone, Campbell and Kenton, call Michael Bouldin at 859-581-6453 or email amwbouldin@fuse.net.  

Do I Have to Go to Jail?

Many criminal defendants ask if they will have to go to jail. The answer depends largely on the charges as well as the defendant's criminal history. If you have been sentenced to incarceration, you DO have to go to jail.  Often the courts will allow a report date for the defendant to appear at the jail. If you do not report, they will generally issue a warrant for Bail Jumping, a felony. There are times when you could also be charged with Felony Escape. This sounds like a jail break, but could also be failing to return after work release. Many charges have mandatory jail sentences. If you have a 2nd or multiple offense DUI, there is mandatory jail time associated therewith.  There are some instances when Home Incarceration (HIP) or work release may be possible in lieu of standard jail sentence. If you have been charged or are facing criminal charges, contact an attorney to discuss whether jail is mandatory or avoidable.  For representation in Northern Kentucky, call Michael Bouldin at 859-581-6453 or email at mwbouldin2@gmail.com.

Father's Custody Lawyer

If you are interested in a law firm that specializes in father's rights, you only need to find a lawyer committed to represent your cause. Fathers enjoy the same legal rights as mothers in the commonwealth of Kentucky. This is regardless of whether the parties are married or unwed at the time the child is born. Note: this is not the same in the state of Ohio. Father's generally enjoy the same rights to custody and parenting time as the mother; when it is possible.  Many fathers feel like their rights are inferior because they pay child support or do not see the children half of the time.  Often, this is due to a work schedule in stead of a court preference for mother.  Other times, the father consents to a parenting schedule which is less than he may otherwise enjoy. One such reason for this is the presumption that fathers historically enjoy visitation and not joint legal custody.  Also, fathers historically pay child support.  Many also have the mistaken belief that if they get joint custody that they will not have to pay any support for the children.  Joint custody is the legal right to make decisions for the child(ren). Parenting time is another consideration.  Even in equal parenting situations, child support is still regularly exchanged if the parties do not have the same earning ability (income). If you wish to know more about your rights or if you need to retain an attorney for custody or divorce, call michael Bouldin at 859-581-6453 or email at mwbouldin2@gmail.com.  [caption id="attachment_31" align="alignnone" width="300"]MWB and boys MWB and boys[/caption]

Father's Rights

With Father's Day on Sunday, USA Today has a major article about Dads fighting for equal rights with their children. "Divorce for men" and "Men only. Family law." Law firms specializing in father's rights are becoming all the rage. Intelligent divorcing men will realize this is simply a marketing ploy. Those of us with a history of practicing family law in Northern Kentucky have been fighting for men's rights for years...and winning. Fathers in Kenton and Boone counties generally are presumed to have equal frights and can share parenting time with Mothers if their schedule allows. Child support can be paid from either parent to the other. Kentucky law is essentially gender neutral with the exception of child support laws and income imputation to mothers of infant children. Many times child support is still exchanged because it is simplistic than exchanging expenses on a monthly basis. Child support, expenses and custody are all interrelated. It is naive to thing that any one exists in a vacuum. Talk with your attorney about those things that are most important to you. For a consultation about divorce and custody rights in Northern Kentucky,call Mike Bouldin at 859-581-6453 (581-MIKE) or email mwbouldin@fuse.net.

What Is PDP?

PDP is short form for Possession of Drug Paraphernalia.  It is often charged in connection with possession of an illegal drug - heroin, cocaine or marijuana.  While the courts very often only issue a fine in connection with a PDP charge, n Kentucky the charge is a Class A misdemeanor and is punishable by up to 12 months in jail and up to $500 fine. KRS 218A.500 defines the unlawful practices and penalties associated with drug paraphernalia.  KRS 218A.510 outlines the factors for a court to consider when evaluating whether an item is that of drug paraphernalia.  It is not common for a PDP charge to be made when there are no drugs found. That said, it is increasing in criminal charge when the police often find hypodermic needles near or on a drug user and the drug is already been ingested.  This is very common in heroin cases.  In most cases, some amoutn of the drug can be taken as evidence. Any testable amount is sufficient for a conviction of possession of drugs, which may be a Felony charge. If you have been charged with possession of drugs or PDP, you need an attorney.  Even marijuana can be used against you in future cases as well as by employers.  Heroin, cocaine and many prescription drugs can lead to felony convictions. In Cincinnati and Northern Kentucky, call Michael Bouldin at 859-581-6453 (581-MIKE) or email at mwbouldin2@gmail.com  to schedule a consultation.

What is DWOP?

DWOP is short term used for Dismissal Without Prejudice.  The term is used in both Kentucky and Ohio courts.  It is generally slang but becomes shorthand for many prosecutors and some judges.  If a case is dismissed without prejudice, the State/Commonwealth has the ability to refile the case at a later date.  This is often done in cases where an essential witness or victim does not appear or is unable to appear at the trial date. Very seldom do defendants object to a DWOP, since the case is technically being dismissed.  There are certain times when objection should be made so that the Court can determine if to dismiss without or with prejudice.  If a case is dismissed WITH prejudice, then the matter cannot be recharged or re-indicted without the defense of double jeopardy.  This is done when the defendant and counsel are set for trial.  The defendant can announce "ready for trial" and if the prosecution cannot proceed, the Defense Attorney should ask for dismissal with prejudice. Whether the case is refiled or re-indicted depends on a number of factors, including the reasons that the witness may be absent as well as the severity of the alleged crime.  Generally, the decision rests with the local prosecutor. Whether to dismiss with or without prejudice is a decision for the judge and is discretionary.  If you have a case pending, you need an experienced criminal defense attorney.  For consultation in Kentucky or Cincinnati, call Michael Bouldin at 859-581-6453 (581-MIKE) or email at mwbouldin2@gmail.com. 

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