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April 25, 2013

Crime Doesn’t Pay, Especially for Your College Tuition

Trends these days have ranged from wearing leggings, to using an iPad in the classroom instead of taking notes with a good old fashioned pencil and paper. These days, the trend in education seems to be the completion of some form of graduate school in addition to a college bachelor’s degree. Most people, however, cannot afford to pay for these degrees on their own, because, let’s face it, who has $150,000 lying around? Thus, these students must resort to applying for and receiving federal loans to pay for their expensive…

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April 17, 2013

FATHER’S RIGHTS IN CUSTODY BATTLES EQUAL TO MOTHER’S RIGHTS

The 1970s was a decade of substantial changes in the law, including the prohibition of involuntarily committing citizens to a psychiatric institution if they were not a danger to themselves or others by the states, the determination that carefully crafted death penalty statutes might be constitutional, and the historic case of Roe v. Wade, whereby abortions were legalized throughout the United States. Despite these liberal advances in the areas of criminal and constitutional law, this was not a decade of progress in the family law arena, as the tender years…

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April 15, 2013

Medical Marijuana….Should it Be Legalized in PA?

In 1972, Congress declared marijuana to be a Schedule 1 drug when it passed the Controlled Substances Act. Schedule 1 means that there are absolutely no medical uses for the drug. However, since then, 17 out of the 50 states in the country, plus Washington, D.C., have legalized marijuana for medicinal purposes. Was Congress wrong, then, for placing this drug into that category? Or, was Congress correct in attempting to control this potentially dangerous drug? Marijuana comes from the cannabis plant, and has a long history of medicinal uses. Medicinal…

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April 5, 2013

Energy Drinks; Bad for You Physically, Bad for You LEGALLY?

Energy Drinks; Bad for You Physically, Bad for You Legally You have probably heard the saying, “beer before liquor, never been sicker, liquor before beer, you’re in the clear,” and you may even follow it as a ‘rule of thumb’ when socially consuming alcoholic beverages. And because it is the law in every state in the country, everyone has heard the saying, “friends don’t let friend drive drunk.” However, you have probably never heard the sayings, “don’t drink ENERGY drinks and drive,” or “don’t mix alcoholic beverages with energy drinks.”…

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November 13, 2011

The Pennsylvania Gold Rush

The Marcellus Shale drilling boom has brought with it the hope for lucrative profits to Pennsylvania landowners and drilling companies alike. Some Pennsylvania landowners have already benefited from this and we will see many, many more benefit in the near future as the gas companies who have already entered into agreements with gas and oil companies begin to more aggressively approach those landowners in the Marcellus Shale regions of Pennsylvania. Although Marcellus Shale underlies approximately two-thirds of Pennsylvania, it was only recently – in the past few years – that…

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November 16, 2010

Why Was I Charged with Two Counts of DUI?

A lot of people who have been accused of DUI in Pennsylvania wonder why they end up being charged with not one but two DUI offenses at one time.  This is because Pennsylvania law allows a driver to be charged with what I will call two “separate” DUI offenses.  Each can stand independently of the other but, in the unfortunate event that you are found guilty of both offenses, such offenses merge for sentencing. The first type of DUI requires that government must prove that while you are driving or…

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November 11, 2010

Stupid Human Tricks on the Roadside

A History Of The Standardized Field Sobriety Tests (in other words: Stupid Human Tricks) I know…history. Bor-ing! But keep reading and I promise that you will find the history behind the Standardized Field Sobriety Tests to be interesting. And, I guarantee that you will learn something too. For example, you may be surprised to know that certain tests like touching your finger to your nose or reciting the alphabet backwards are NOT standardized tests for DUI and should not be used exclusively to determine if you are impaired due to…

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November 4, 2010

What’s the Purpose of the Preliminary Hearing?

What’s The Purpose Of A Preliminary Hearing, Anyway? If you have been charged with a criminal offense, you will eventually receive a notification in the mail advising you of the time and place of your preliminary hearing.  The problem, though, is that you may not understand the purpose of a preliminary hearing or what occurs there.  Most important, you may not be aware that, with the help of competent attorneys like us here at Tibbott Richardson, a preliminary hearing is the first place in which you can vigorously challenge your…

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October 24, 2010

Is Scalping Tickets Legal in Pittsburgh?

Well it’s Steeler Sunday and that has me thinking about ticket scalping. On the way to Heinz Field for every home game, I see scalpers everywhere holding their signs telling people that they need tickets.  I thought I’d share the rules with you, considering scalping without a license IS a crime. Scalping in Pennsylvania is legal, as long as the seller doesn’t collect $5 or 25 percent more than face value on the ticket, whichever is higher. In Pittsburgh, a ticket scalper is required to have a license in order…

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October 21, 2010

Why Field Sobriety Tests Are Unreliable

Why The Standardized Field Sobriety Tests Are Unreliable You are driving along the highway late at night when you see that a police officer has pulled a car off at the side of the highway.  You notice that the car’s driver is standing in between his vehicle and the police cruiser, with one leg lifted and is attempting to balance.  From experience, you know he is being tested for DUI. We’ve all seen this happen sometime in our lives and, without knowing better, many of us don’t even question the…

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