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Is That Even Legal?
17 minutes | Jul 25, 2022
Who Gets The Money Crowdsourced for Charity?
You have it in your heart to give to a charity. There is a site set up for donations like yours. All good right? Not so fast!Who organized the effort? How much will ACTUALLY go to the intended recipients? What if you are scammed? Listen in as attorney Kelsi Lane gives some good tips. Here are some more from foolproofme.org.Beware of Campaigns Posted After a Tragedy or Natural Disaster The cause can be personal or local, such as supporting medical help for a local family injured in an auto wreck. In one recent case, a woman was prosecuted for raising money for cancer treatments when she was not ill. So if the organizer is an individual, ask exactly how the money will be distributed and accounted for. Do a web search on the individual also. Remember, you just have their word for what they plan to do. In many cases, the cause is regional, national or global, such as campaigns that appear after tornadoes, floods, hurricanes, earthquakes, or the current wildfires in the western U.S. Such campaigns are a hotbed for fraud, and they pop up like mushrooms. Always thoroughly check out charitable causes. Check out the charitable organization's track record with the Better Business Bureau (regional BBBs often evaluate local groups) and with national sites such as guidestar.org, charitywatch.org and charitynavigator.org. In the case of disaster relief, it is probably wiser to give money to an established nonprofit charitable organization that has a track record of accountability. Don't Give More Than You Can Afford Remember, if you are supporting the development of a new product—from a new online game to an innovative tech gadget—there is no guarantee that the product will be successfully brought to market. Also a large percentage of eventually successful projects experience delays. If you are supporting a charitable cause, there is no real guarantee that the money will actually go where the campaign says it will. If you are giving to a creative event, only the individual's or group's integrity or track record indicates that the artist will complete that exhibit of ground-breaking digital art, that the newbie filmmakers will shoot that indie film, or that the choral group will conduct the new composition and present the winners in concert. So support a project you like, but don't give more than you can afford. File a Complaint about Scams If you have been defrauded or have good reasons to suspect a fraud, report your experience to the crowdfunding platform. Also make a complaint to the Federal Trade Commission (FTC) Complaint Assistant.
36 minutes | Jul 4, 2022
Personal Injury Lawyers...They are NOT All the Same!
The ads are ubiquitous. The slogans annoying. Personal injury and car crash lawyers often get a bad rap. Sometimes deservedly so. As widespread as those billboards, radio ads and other assaults on the senses are...they are meant to address something almost all of us has experienced, or been touched by - a car accident. When those accidents produce injuries, the "PI" lawyer is suddenly needed. How do you find a good one? Does a bad ad make for a bad lawyer? Does no ad make for a good lawyer? Let's find out as Bob interviews Kevin Fine, a PI lawyer and a wellness advocate.As you listen, mull these stats over from drivingtests.org: In 2019, there were 6,756,000 police-reported motor vehicle crashes, including 1,916,000 crashes involving injury and 33,244 crashes involving death. (NHTSA, 2021) In 2010, the economic cost of traffic crashes (both reported and unreported) was estimated to be about $242 billion, plus an additional $594 billion in societal costs resulting from the effects of these crashes on the victims, for a total cost of $836 billion. This total cost represented about 5.6% of the US Gross Domestic Product (GDP) in 2010. (NHTSA, 2017) (Source: https://driving-tests.org/driving-statistics/) Around 2 million drivers in car accidents experience permanent injuries every year. (Driver Knowledge, 2019) (Source: https://driving-tests.org/driving-statistics/) About 10 million or more crashes go unreported each year. (National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, 2018) (Source: https://driving-tests.org/driving-statistics/)
28 minutes | Jun 13, 2022
The recent defamation trial featuring Johnny Depp and Amber Heard put the word defamation in the headlines. The entire world now knows too many details about the marriage of those two - more perhaps than many of us care to. But, do we know about defamation and what it really means?Bob says too many people have talked about the trial for him to weigh in...but we bring back an episode with Ted Boutrous, one of the country's leading defamation lawyers...to tell us what that word means and how and when you can sue and win a defamation case....Listen in.
27 minutes | May 30, 2022
Do Bad Actors Use Bankruptcy as a Shield?
Many say there is a coming recession the likes of which this country hasn't seen in years. If you are behind on your bills with signs you may not recover, or if your business needs to restructure debt...bankruptcy is the fresh start you need. Contact a bankruptcy lawyer soon...before things get bad. It is, in a way, a shield you can deploy as you get your debt under control and move forward with a new life.But what about bad actors who use this shield? Is That Even Legal?Can bankruptcy be used to protect those who commit crimes?On this timely episode, Bob speaks with bankruptcy law guru and attorney Ron Holmes - exploring everything from what happens when someone defames mass shooting victims' families (and then files bankruptcy due to lawsuits), to churches that go bankrupt over mounting sexual assault claims.The good, the bad...and the legality...of bankruptcy.
50 minutes | May 16, 2022
Supreme Court Spotlight - Featuring Justices King and Beene from the Arizona Supreme Court
We have witnessed another U.S. Supreme Court confirmation recently. We have also witnessed the controversy when a draft SCOTUS majority opinion was leaked to the media resulting in issues of privacy and protest.How do nomination processes differ between the Federal system and the judicial system in Arizona? What is it like, from a Justice's perspective, to go through the process of "getting the job?"Find out more about judicial philosophy, merit and stare decisis and their impact on your life through rulings from the bench.What would Justice Kathryn King and Justice James Beene want you to know about their role and duties on the court?
25 minutes | May 2, 2022
Which Trust Can You Trust? Will Your Estate Plan Leave Your Heirs High and Dry?
Welcome to the definitive Estate Planning podcast episode.1. Can You Trust Your Trust?2. If You Are One of the Thousands of Business Owners Planning to Sell Your Business This Year...How Can Your Protect Your Wealth Once You've Accomplished The Sale? The parent passes and the prospective heirs say...we are in good shape. We have a trust! Then they find out...as guest attorney Alan Soelberg describes it...with a gut punch...that the trust they have doesn't apply to their situation. This happens far too often! The airwaves and newsfeeds are flooded with ads for estate planning and trusts these days. Which ones can you actually trust? Many Americans find out when it's too late that filling in fields online and getting the document printed out and notarized does NOT mean you are in good shape with your estate plan. Listen why.If you sell your business without estate planning and proper asset protection, you could pay up to SEVEN FIGURES more in taxes than you need to. This is the year of the exit...the year of the silver tide (boomers selling their business). Find out why your business sale and your estate plan/asset protection go hand in hand.
31 minutes | Apr 18, 2022
Who Gets The Dough After A Death in the Family? The Podcast You Must Hear
Your mom passes and suddenly women from around the neighborhood are showing up at your dad's door with casseroles. Soon, dad marries one of these "casserole ladies." Fine. But after a few months or short years, she begins to tell dad that YOU are evil and should be disinherited. He acquiesces. Now he has passed, and you and your siblings get nothing, according to his will. Is That Even Legal?Casserole Ladies, AB Splits, Beneficiary Designations and ERISA...it's a recipe for complexity unless you know the right lawyer. In this episode, guest host and estate planning and trust administration lawyer Sarah Clifford interviews Bob, who's expertise is probate law.So often after death someone in the family is left disappointed or destitute because they didn't understand how the law worked. From a widow who loses half her house, to the children who watch the "casserole lady." get rich while they are left with nothing. Bob has seen it all, and he has some tips on what you can do to understand and control who gets the dough.
24 minutes | Apr 4, 2022
Revenge Porn is Becoming Pervasive...
Revenge Porn has recently been the plot of daytime soap operas, been an issue on international reality shows, and of course has had a number of high profile celebrity victims in recent years.Increasingly, however, for many married couples whose relationships go south, the issue is hitting close to home during divorce discussions as threats to reveal intimate photos are made or acted upon. Furthermore, when teen romances involving underage pictures are involved, serious felonies can be committed when images are stored viewed and or distributed.As of 2020, 42 states and the District of Columbia have specific laws outlawing distribution of revenge porn. However, revenge porn laws are still relatively new and the laws are continuing to develop. The crimes however, are multiplying.While each state has different laws, most generally define the crime of revenge porn as any person, with the intent to harass or annoy another who: Publishes or distributes electronic or printed photographs, pictures, or films that Show the genitals, anus, or female breast of the other person, or Depicts that person engaged in a sexual act. In this episode, Bob talks with Divorce specialist Douglas Gardner and Criminal Defense attorney Russel Richelsoph to find out what is legal. This is an important episode for everyone in today's society.Show Notes:Scenario 1: Photos of Couple Many couples have, during the good times, photographed or videoed themselves or their partner or both together in intimate ways. While such videos or photographs may be seen by the parties as appropriate and acceptable at the time the videos or photographs are taken, these photographs and videos can become very awkward during and after a divorce. First, follow the Golden Rule. Delete photos of others, as you would want them to delete photos of you. As part of your “moving forward to a new life” delete such intimate photos or videos of your former spouse or partner. If you are aware of photos or videos your partner may have, you can ask politely that they also delete them. Second, never store intimate photos or videos online, or post to any form of social media. What gets posted online or social media, seems to stay online or social media. Protect yourself and your partner or former partner, and keep personal control over such items. Third, while there may be no real way to know for sure if such photos or videos have been deleted, please understand that publishing or posting or sharing photos of an un-consenting ex-spouse or partner could be a criminal matter, and could result in an Order of Protection and other legal action being taken against you. It is not worth it. In Arizona, where Is That Even Legal? originates, Revenge Porn is a Class 4 felony, punishable by up to 1.5 years in prison and a fine up to $150,000 and could in some cases require registration as a sexual offender. Specifically, A. R. S. § 13-1425 makes it a criminal offense to intentionally disclose the image of an identifiable person in a state of nudity or engaged in sexual activity, when the person has an expectation of privacy, with the intent to harm, harass, intimidate, threaten, or coerce the depicted person.”
35 minutes | Mar 21, 2022
Your Food May Not Contain What You Think It Does!
Is it really "natural" food? (hint, there is NO definition from the FDA) Does it really have fruit in it, or just "flavoring?" How much beef in a "beef," fast food item is "reasonable?"What if the package is half empty whey you buy it? What if it is baby food and contains dangerous metals?If a cow eats GMO grain, is it's milk natural?As host Bob Sewell would say...what the hell is "natural food?" and what is "free range," or "grass fed?"Should you sue over your food?! If you do...what do you get if you win?In this episode, Bob interviews food law guru Ivan Wasserman to discuss. everything from Pop Tarts to Froot Loops to Red Bull. For good measure, Ivan does some "Probiotic comedy!"From the American Bar Association:"The food and beverage industry continues to face increasing scrutiny over labeling and advertising. Despite the pandemic, the number of class actions targeting the food and beverage industry increased last year and shows no signs of slowing down......given the competitive plant-based protein segment, the food and beverage industry should expect a substantial uptick in litigation. The year 2020 saw a 10-year high in food and beverage class action filings. Overall, there was an 80 percent increase in class action filings from the prior year. The upward trend in class action litigation and the burgeoning area of plant-based products suggest that the business of food litigation is anything but stale."
19 minutes | Mar 7, 2022
You’re Drowning In Student Loan Debt...Is Bankruptcy a Solution?
Last month The Washington Post published this headline: Biden administration promised bankruptcy reforms. So why is it still fighting student loan borrowers in court? While the administration withdrew its appeal to one of the hardship cases mentioned in the article, there is still widespread misunderstanding about bankruptcy and the student loan crisis - what can and can't be done. Enter Bob's guest, bankruptcy specialist Pernell McGuire, who also serves as the managing partner of Arizona law firm Davis Miles McGuire Gardner.Bob and Pernell break down what you need to know about the current crisis and what might be needed to solve it.Show notes: Can you have your student loans discharged in bankruptcy? What does it take currently? What other programs exist today and what is being done/contemplated? Student loans add up to $1.75 trillion in debt! That's 20 percent of all U.S. debt. The Biden administration has pledged to address student loans and bankruptcy reform. In the meantime; Some have called for a moratorium on the Education Department opposing federal student loan borrowers bankruptcy requests until new laws and programs are adopted...will that happen? What about private student loans? Give it a listen, and share with anyone you know who has student loan debt...
32 minutes | Feb 21, 2022
Dirty Deeds and Title Theft...Can Someone Actually Steal Your House?
Maybe you have never heard of home title fraud or deed fraud? In today's crazy real estate market, you should be aware...and be prepared. You’ve probably heard about it through commercials in the media trying to get you to buy products to protect yourself from title fraud. Should you be scared?In this first episode of Season 3, Bob visits with real estate lawyer and title guru Jesi Wolnik to get the real facts about title fraud...something she has dealt with a lot as a lawyer.What are we talking about here? (hat tip The Better Business Bureau):Home title fraud happens when someone obtains the title to your property and changes ownership from your information to theirs. The scary part is, you may not even realize it has happened until it’s too late. How the Scam Works: Scammers will choose a house, sometimes a second home, rental or vacant house. They then gather your personal information from the internet or elsewhere, and take over your identity to assume the role of property owner or claim to represent you. They file the necessary paperwork to transfer ownership of your property to themselves, using forged signatures and fake identification. They then sell the home or borrow against the equity. You might not even know this has happened until a lender starts to send letters of foreclosure on your home due to failure to make payments.
23 minutes | Feb 7, 2022
Prince Philip's Will Must Be Secret for 90 Years...Your Will is Public Record...Why?
It all started with a scandal in the 1900s. A royal with a mistress to whom he literally left the family jewels... After much pubic embarrassment and a costly ruby buy back programme, it became the practice that Royal Family Wills be sealed and secret. Now, even distant relatives may get the royal treatment of a secret Will!Either in the U.S.A. or (for non-royals) in England, if YOU want the details of your Will kept private...you are royally out of luck...unless you also have a trust.Our intrepid host and probate guru Bob Sewell found it fascinating that the High Court ordered that Prince Philip’s Will be kept secret for 90 years. This is a departure from the general rule that wills are open to inspection by the public after being admitted to probate. However, Prince Philip’s Will was judged to fall within the sole exception that a Will may be kept private if the court agrees that it would be “undesirable or otherwise inappropriate” to publish it.What does that even mean? Is that even legal? Our guests, probate litigators and estate experts Judith Swinhoe-Standen and Geoff Kertesz join us from across the pond to expound on royal secrets!Don't miss it.For more legal reading, here is their recent article:https://www.stewartslaw.com/news/why-prince-philips-will-and-other-royal-wills-are-kept-secret/
20 minutes | Jan 17, 2022
The Supreme Court Rules on Vax Mandates...What's Next for Employees and Employers?
Last Thursday, the Supreme Court ruled that OSHA does NOT have the power to enforce Biden's COVID vaccine mandate for employees of large employers (if you are a regular listener to this podcast, you were no doubt NOT surprised by this ruling) the rule had just barely gone into effect, requiring employees at large businesses get a vaccine or test regularly and wear a mask on the job.At the same time, the court is allowing the administration to proceed with a vaccine mandate for most health care workers in the U.S. The court's orders Thursday came during a spike in coronavirus cases caused by the omicron variant.In light of the ruling, some companies have already suspended their vaccination requirements of employees. Some companies, like Boeing, have delayed mandates until its fate is certain, while others, like Citigroup, have said they are going ahead regardless.In this episode, Bob brings on employment law guru Krizia Verplancke to talk about the implications for employers, employees and healthcare workers.Listen in to learn:Can you sue your company if you get COVID on the job?Will the government try again with a new rule?Employers can still enforce their own mandates, but will doing so be more fraught?Will companies that were on the fence still introduce mandates? Should they?Healthcare workers who refuse to be vaccinated may reduce the number of healthcare workers on hand to treat COVID.
35 minutes | Jan 10, 2022
Designer Divorces: Can You Keep the Dirty Laundry Private?
You've read the tabloids...the salacious divorce details of the world's rich and famous. Yet, somehow other equally powerful people manage to dissolve their unions with virtually no disclosure to the public, and maintaining a modicum of a relationship. How is this done? Meet the "designer divorce," better known as the collaborative model. Divorce takes an astronomical toll on couples, their families, friends and their personal, financial and personal lives. Yet statistics show 50% of couples will divorce. When that happens, a typical contested divorce not only is costly, but it exposes a couple's issues in a very public way. The collaborative model is different. While not for everyone, it's also not only for celebrities! Bob's guest is collaborative divorce guru Cristi McMurdie...listen in and learn about an alternative approach to untying the knot.
21 minutes | Dec 27, 2021
You hear a lot about 'Self Defense," but.... Is that even legal? Bob gets to the bottom of it.
In this episode Bob intereviews defense lawyer Russ Richelsoph about the myths and misconceptions of self defense, stand your ground and what's legal!
20 minutes | Dec 13, 2021
Can You Get a DUI on Your Bike? Your Scooter? Your...Horse?
'Tis the season to be jolly. Many will give and get bicycles for gifts, others will get festive with bike pub crawls or blast through college towns on scooters after having downed a few ounces of holiday cheer. Is That Even Legal? Bob takes to the road in tights with one of our favorite guests, avid bicyclist and attorney Marshall Hunt, who has been on a legal journey to find answers because...“Nothing compares to the simple pleasure of a bike ride.” John F. Kennedy, Okay, that may be an urban legend that Kennedy actually said that, but the guest and the host of this episode certainly agree with the quote...whoever said it! So do a lot of other folks: In 2020 alone. the number of participants (aged six years and above) in road/paved surface biking amounted to approximately 44.47 million in the U.S. according to Statista. E-bikes are becoming wildly popular worldwide. So...same laws apply to drinking while riding or scooting as say, driving?Listen in and find out!
35 minutes | Nov 29, 2021
Can Your Employer Stop You From Getting Your Next Job?
Restrictive covenants. Non-competes. Some states allow their enforcement. Some states don't. In an increasingly mobile employment environment and in a time when the "Great Resignation," is sweeping the country, the Federal Government is paying a lot of attention to trying to "promote competitive labor markets and worker mobility." This effort is in response an Executive Order by President Biden in July, urging the Federal Trade Commission to "curtail the unfair use of non-compete clauses...that may unfairly limit worker mobility."On December 6th and 7th, the FTC and the DOJ will host a virtual workshop to inform the rulemaking process. This episode tees up the issue looking at restrictive covenants from all sides, with guest litigation attorney David Williams.Have you ever been laid off only to find that you can't get a job in your field due to a non-compete? Have you ever had an employee walk off with your customer list or your "secret sauce? As an employee, are you free to leave for a competitor? As an employer, are your trade secrets protected.? If you aren't sure, this episode of Is That Even Legal is for you.More on the December Workshop. See also https://www.justice.gov/atr/events/public-workshop-promoting-competition-labor-markets#informationAccording to the FTC, Over the two days (12/6 and 12/7) a series of panels, presentations, and remarks will address competition issues affecting labor markets and the welfare of workers, including: labor monopsony; the increased use of restrictive contractual clauses in labor agreements, including non-competes and non-disclosure agreements; information sharing and benchmarking activity among competing employers; the role of other federal agencies in ensuring fair competition in labor markets; and the relationship between antitrust law and collective bargaining efforts in the “gig economy.” Panelists will be invited to discuss potential steps antitrust enforcers can take to better target enforcement resources, improve public guidance, and pursue a “whole of government” approach to ensuring fair competition for workers and consumers by leveraging interagency resources. The FTC and the DOJ Antitrust Division invite comments from the public on the topics covered by this workshop. Interested parties may submit public comments online now through Dec. 20, 2021, at Regulations.gov. DocuPlayer! The best tool for explaining legal contracts! Simplify legalese with DocuPlayer!
26 minutes | Nov 15, 2021
Will Build Back Better Break You With Taxes?
Democratic lawmakers in the House of Representatives have advanced updated legislation containing the tax elements of President Biden’s Build Back Better agenda. It could get voted on this week! The draft legislation may be modified before that. What does it mean for you?Bob goes to the mystic tax guru Elliot Barela to read the future.... Using the Tax Foundations General Equilibrium Model, they estimate that the tax provisions, IRS enforcement, and drug pricing provisions in the House bill would increase federal revenues by about $1.5 trillion over the next decade, before accounting for $500 billion in expanded tax credits for individuals and businesses, resulting in a net revenue increase of about $1 trillion. Excluding the anticipated revenue from increased tax compliance and the drug pricing provisions, the bill would raise about $637 billion from net tax increases over 10 years. They also estimate however, that the House bill would reduce long-run economic output by nearly 0.4 percent and eliminate about 107,000 full-time equivalent jobs in the United States. It would also reduce average after-tax incomes for the top 80 percent of taxpayers over the long run. Is that even legal?DocuPlayer! The best tool for explaining legal contracts! Simplify legalese with DocuPlayer!
46 minutes | Nov 1, 2021
You Can't Afford or Hardly Access Good Healthcare...
The law effects every aspect of our lives - including healthcare. Bob likes to say we have the best healthcare money can buy in America...but it takes a lot of money to buy it!Bob has questions: Why does it cost so much to get good healthcare and what is being done to bring those costs down? What is being done to make access to healthcare more equitable? What happens to patient advocacy in the age of COVID, when your defender can't be at your bedside or in the care facility with you? These answers and more as Bob interviews Harvard trained lawyer and healthcare law guru Scott Becker, host of the Becker Healthcare podcast.DocuPlayer! The best tool for explaining legal contracts! Simplify legalese with DocuPlayer!
43 minutes | Oct 18, 2021
Pandora Papers! Stashing Cash Offshore…
Welcome to the Pandora Papers Episode!Some of your favorite pop stars...the leaders of foreign governments and other high profile people have been exposed by "investigative journalists," for their "secret" dealings overseas!And, some states in the U.S. enable private transactions and accounts that protect the name of individuals from both in and outside the United States...IS THAT EVEN LEGAL?Bob is joined by Ike Devji, a nationally-known Asset Protection guru with nearly 20 years of experience helping Americans use offshore tools legally. Listen in as Ike helps sort out what is legal, what is illegal and what is legal made illegal through stupidity! Some highlights:There is NO SUCH THING AS A SECRET where the law is concerned.Tax evasion is illegal.That Magic Bag of Beans Trust you bought from a radio commercial...? It may just land you in jail.
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