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Abandoned Pets In California

Abandoned Pets In California

Abandoned Pets In California

There is little that tugs on the heartstrings more than a family pet that has been abandoned. A startling number of these stories involve a family suddenly moving and leaving a cat or dog behind, often on the property. If you happen to be the person who either rents or purchases the property, it’s important to understand your legal rights.

California lawmakers addressed the issues of abandoned pets. The law was designed to protect both landlords and incoming residents from inheriting responsibility for the pet the previous tenants left behind. All you have to do is report the pet to animal control. When you report the pet, local animal control officers will arrive at the property and remove the animal. Prior to the law change, everyone had to leave the pet where it was for a full two days after its discovery to see if the previous owners planned on returning for it.

This new law makes it possible for the pet to receive shelter, food, and any veterinary care it requires.

If you are getting ready to move and are considering leaving your pet behind, you need to think again. This is a serious problem that law officials are starting to really crackdown on.

Even if there is a legitimate reason your pet can’t make the move with you, you’re legally obligated to take care of them. That means that if you aren’t able to convince a friend or family member to assume ownership, you’ll have to go through a shelter.

It’s important to understand that abandoning your pet is illegal. The resulting charge is a misdemeanor. If you’re found guilty you could be fined $50-$500 and possibly spend time in jail.

If the stress of the move causes a pet to run away, you need to report them as a lost animal as quickly as possible. Reporting them as lost not only increases the odds of them getting safely returned to your family, but eliminates the possibility of you being charged with animal abandonment in California.

 

Selling Real Estate Without A License

Selling Real Estate Without A License

Selling Real Estate Without A License

Selling real estate seems simple enough. Someone wants to sell their house. You know a few people who would be interested. You agree to act as a broker between everyone. Considering that people sell houses as “for sale by owner” all the time, what can possibly go wrong.

Yes, it’s possible that this could turn into a good deal for everyone, it can also go horribly sideways. While state laws do allow you to sell your house without the aid of a real estate agent, you’re not allowed to step in and act as a broker for another person unless you’ve been properly licensed by the state.

Getting a real estate license in California isn’t necessarily difficult, but it does require some commitment on your part. The state real estate board wants proof that you clearly understand the ins and outs of real estate law.

The State of California won’t issue a real estate license to you until you’ve:

  • Completed a specified real estate course.
  • Passed a written exam.
  • Undergone a thorough state background check.

It is important to understand that California has two different types of real estate license: (1) a license that allows you to act as a real estate salesperson and (2) a license that allows you to act as a real estate broker.

You won’t be granted a broker’s license until you’ve first obtained your salesperson license. The state won’t even consider your application to become a broker until you’ve obtained a great deal of hands-on experience working as a real estate salesperson.

Failure to become properly licensed before selling real estate has serious legal repercussions. If you’re caught, you could be facing either a felony or misdemeanor charges. The punishment often depends on why you were eventually caught, how many properties you ultimately helped sell, and if you have ever been charged with selling a property without a license in the past.

In many cases, you’ll serve time in either jail or state prison. It’s also likely you’ll be required to pay a steep fine, have a probation period, and even be required to do community service. Depending on the situation, you could also have to pay restitution to everyone involved in the case. There’s also a chance that civil charges will be filed against you. It’s unlikely that you’ll ever be allowed to legally sell real estate after you’ve been convicted.

All things considered, it’s best to put in the work and obtain your real estate license rather than trying to take a short cut.

 

Tips To Help You Get Ready To File Your 2020 Tax Return

Tips To Help You Get Ready To File Your 2020 Tax Return

Tips To Help You Get Ready To File Your 2020 Tax Return

Your 2020 tax return isn’t due until mid-April, but that doesn’t mean you should ignore that tax season is officially here. The last thing you want to do is wait until a few days before the deadline to file. Turning your thoughts to your tax return now and creating a plan to help you prepare them reduces a great deal of tax season stress.

The key to keeping your stress levels low during tax season is creating a plan of attack. Create a list of specific tasks that need to be completed and determine when you’ll do them. You’ll be amazed how much a solid plan of attack smooths out the process of filing your 2020 tax return.

Gather Your Paperwork

Spend the second half of January and the first half of February gathering up all the paperwork you need to complete your 2020 tax return. The paperwork you need to have on hand before you’re ready to start preparing your tax return includes:

  • W2s
  • Documents that indicate itemized expenses such as child care, medical insurance, and educational costs
  • Any 1099s connected to freelance contractors you hired throughout the year
  • Donation receipts
  • Mortgage interest payment documents
  • An itemized list of business expenses (if relevant)
  • Investment statements
  • Receipts for any tax-deductible purchases you made throughout the year

Keep all of these documents in a drawer or file that’s specifically dedicated to your 2020 taxes.

Dedicating a few weeks to simply organizing all the paperwork that’s relevant to your 2020 tax return does three things. One, it means you don’t have to constantly stop and look for things while you’re preparing your return. Two, you won’t accidentally forget to add something that could impact how much you owe/receive. Three, by gathering all of the documents early, you’ll notice if something is lost and still have time to find/replace the document.

Prepare Your 2020 Tax Return

Set aside a few days in early March to actually prepare your tax return. If you’re handling this on your own, make sure you have a block of time when you won’t be interrupted. Give yourself plenty of time. If you find the process overwhelming, divide the process into several small, manageable chunks. By starting to prepare the paperwork in March, it means you won’t be in a race to complete the work by the April 15 deadline.

When you’re done, save the documentation but don’t submit it to the IRS just yet.

Review Your Work

Give yourself a week or two before returning to your completed tax return. Carefully go over every single line and make sure everything is correct. This review process is the best way to avoid making a mistake that could trigger an audit. Once you’re satisfied that everything is accurate, it’s time to officially file your taxes.

Set Up A Payment Plan

If you’re getting a refund from the IRS, you can sit back and wait for the check to appear. If you discover that you owe taxes, you’ll want to set up a payment plan and stick to it. It’s better to make your payments a few days early than to be late.

Hopefully, this plan of attack for your 2020 tax season takes all the stress out of the process, making it possible for you to file your taxes and also enjoy time with your family and friends.

 

What Is Disorderly Conduct In California?

What Is Disorderly Conduct In California?

What Is Disorderly Conduct In California?

Disorderly conduct in California isn’t really one specific charge. It’s a blanket term that covers a surprisingly large array and variety of charges.

Charges that fall under the category of disorderly conduct in California include:

  • Trespassing
  • Rioting
  • Begging
  • Disturbing the peace
  • Prostitution (both soliciting and engaging)
  • Public intoxication
  • Loitering
  • Invasion of privacy
  • And many more

If you’re going through California’s laws, you’ll find disorderly conduct mentioned when you read PC 647.

The exact consequences of disorderly conduct in California depend on what type of crime you’ve been charged with. In most cases, you could face up to one year in jail and/or a fine of up to $1,000 or community service.

The biggest consequence connected to disorderly conduct crimes in California is the damage they do to your reputation. They’re a misdemeanor, so once you’ve put the matter behind you, legally it doesn’t have much impact on your life. However, it does mar your reputation and can have a negative impact on your personal relationships and also make it harder to find employment.

The exact defense you and your lawyer decide to mount in a disorderly conduct case will depend heavily on the situation. The most common defenses involve:

If you’ve been accused of a disorderly conduct crime, it’s in your best interest to contact a lawyer right away. The sooner you start working with a lawyer, the stronger you’re defense will be.

 

People Do What Before Getting Into Public Pools?

People Do What Before Getting Into Public Pools?

People Do What Before Getting Into Public Pools?

With the weather quickly heating up, many people are starting to pull their swimsuits out from their winter hiding spots. With California’s thousands of miles of coastline, there are plenty of places to go to the beach. However, the beach isn’t for everyone. Some people prefer to cool off without having to worry about sand getting everywhere. That is why some people prefer going to a pool.

In addition to the lack of sand at pools, they are often cleaner as well. The water is maintained by humans, instead of being left alone. However, despite the chemicals, mostly chlorine, put into pool water to keep it clean, one recent survey found that pools aren’t always as clean as one would hope.

Public Pools May Not Be As Clean As You Think

The clear blue water of pools often looks a heck of a lot cleaner than the ocean, lake, or river water. Those waters typically have all kinds of debris floating beneath the surface, making them hazy. Pools lack this haze due to the chemicals put into them to kill bacteria, and the filtration systems in them to pick out the bigger particles like bugs and leaves.

However, despite all of that, pools can still contain bits of harmful bacteria, bacteria that is typically brought in by swimmers. A recent survey conducted by Water Quality and Health Council found that 51% of Americans used pools as a way to rinse off after performing sweat inducing activities.

The survey, which polled 3,100 American adults and had a margin of error of plus or minus 2.7%, also found the following information:

  • 24% of people would go within a pool within an hour of having diarrhea.
  • 40% of adults peed in pools.
  • 48% admitted to not showering before entering a pool.
  • 53% didn’t know makeup affected the chemistry of the pool.
  • 55% didn’t know deodorant affected the chemistry of the pool.
  • 64% acknowledge the fact that pools don’t eliminate the need to shower, but use pools as a reason not to shower anyways.

While chlorine does help keep pools cleaner, it isn’t an infinite source of cleanliness. Think of the chlorine in a pool like a bar of soap. Every time it is used to clean something, it becomes smaller and less effective until it is all used up. However, chlorine is not a replacement for soap.

Chlorine keeps pools clean by causing chemical reactions in the water that kill microorganisms and bacteria. By adding other chemicals to the mix, bodily fluids, makeup, and deodorant, a person reduces the strength of the chlorine in the water, thereby reducing its effectiveness.

Help Keep Public Pools Clean

Some of the findings in this survey are more than a bit disgusting. Hopefully, they will serve as a reminder to everyone that there are times when they should not go swimming, and more than that, they should shower before getting into a pool. Doing so can help keep the water cleaner, longer.

Pools are a great way to beat the summer heat, and most are likely maintained on a regular basis. So long as a pool owners keep up with the maintenance of the pool, its filter system, and the chemical makeup, there is no reason to not go swimming in it. All public pools in California are required by law to be kept at safe and sanitary levels at all times. If a person suspects that this isn’t being done at a local public pool, they can report the problem to their local health officials.

As things begin to heat up this summer, be sure to help keep pools clean by not using them as bath time and showering before getting into the water. This will help keep the pool water clean for everyone.

 

Putting Chalk On Tires Deemed Unconstitutional

Putting Chalk On Tires Deemed Unconstitutional

Putting Chalk On Tires Deemed Unconstitutional

One of the great things about our government is how laws can change. As our country grows and beliefs and ideas changes, our laws can adapt with the times. This has been done countless times over the course of America’s history and it continues to happen to this very day. In fact, an interesting change has recently taken place in regards to parking violations.

Most cities have pretty strict guidelines on when, where, and how residents can park their cars. These rules can change from city to city, and even street to street. However, the results are always pretty much the same: a small fine and/or the possibility of being towed.

Different cities and law enforcement agencies have different methods for how they monitor parking on city streets. However, thanks to a new court ruling, one method will have to be dropped, in some states anyways, since a court decided it threatens a person’s constitutional rights.

Why Do The Rules Exist?

When it comes to why these strict rules exist for parking, it boils down either to safety or fairness. For instance, parking in front of a fire hydrant can pose a danger in the event that a fire breaks out nearby and fire fighters need access to the hydrant. Similarly, double parking, the act of parking a car parallel to a car that is parked along a curb, can be dangerous since it often places a car in the way of traffic.

Since parking spots are such a rare commodity in cities, many areas often pose time limits for how long vehicles can be parked there. The idea here is to keep cars moving out of the way in order to allow new drivers to park their own vehicles.

Most of the time, cities enforce their parking laws via parking meters. These devices keep drivers on a time limit, and charge them accordingly if they exceed that limit. As helpful as these devices can be for cities, not every city out there has parking meters installed. After all, they can be very expensive to install. This leads to cities using older methods to monitor parking, such as using parking enforcement officers.

Chalking Tires Is Deemed Unconstitutional

One method used to monitor parking is to mark tires of vehicles with chalk. Parking enforcement officers use the chalk to signal how long cars have been parked. This helps them determine when a vehicle has been stationary for too long. However, the Sixth Circuit Court of Appeals has determined that this method of parking enforcement is unconstitutional.

The court determined that the method invaded a person’s constitutional rights since the marking of the chalk was similar to a warrantless search of a citizen’s possessions. The search is unwarranted since there is no clear proof that the driver of the vehicle will break the law, there is only and assumption that the driver might break the law. This decision was reached largely due to the fact that this sort of enforcement seemed to be more focused on raising revenue for the city rather than enforcing safety.

This decision means that in the states of Michigan, Ohio, Kentucky, and Tennessee, parking enforcement officers will no longer legally be allowed to chalk vehicles tires as a way to determine if a car has overstayed its welcome in that particular spot.

How Will This Ruling Affect California?

While this recent court ruling does not directly affect the state of California, one can safely assume that other states will be taking notice of this event. The state of California is well known for being forward thinking, and this could very well become a law in the state in future. If that were the case, law enforcement agencies would have to rely on parking meters to determine if a car has been parked in a spot for too long.

What do think of this court ruling, is chalking a vehicles tire to monitor how long it has been parked unconstitutional?

Should California and other states adopt a similar ruling? Let us know what you think in the comments down below.

 

No Pets While Driving

No Pets While Driving

No Pets While Driving

Anyone who has a pet knows how fun they are to be around. Often times, pet owners would prefer to spend time at home with their furry companion rather than deal with people. They often fantasize about being able to take their pet to work with them, just to make the day more bearable. Unfortunately, taking pets everywhere with them isn’t always a good idea.

Pets don’t always understand human customs. This can lead to them misbehaving in the most inopportune times, which is why they aren’t allowed in certain places. One town in Ohio has just outlawed pets from one area that many people are all too happy to have pets.

A new city ordinance in Mantua, Ohio looks to crackdown on distracted driving by making it illegal for a person to drive with a pet in their lap. There is no denying that pets can be distracting at times with their cute little faces and fluffy bodies. Unfortunately for them, driving is a time when people cannot pay attention to them.

According to the Centers for Disease Control (CDC), 9 people die every single day due to distracted driving.

Sadly, having a pet in your lap while driving can be very distracting. They can restrict a drivers’ movements and take their attention away from the important task at hand. A driver needs to keep their focus on the road as much as possible, which is why Mantua enacted this law. Now, local police officers will be able to ticket drivers caught driving in this very distracting way.

As much as we love our pets, they can get in the way at times. They may not mean to, but it does happen. This is especially true when it comes to driving. That is why it is best to either leave the pet at home, or have them sit in a separate part of the car.

 

Keep Your Pets Healthy And Warm This Winter

Keep Your Pets Healthy And Warm This Winter

Keep Your Pets Healthy And Warm This Winter

When winter finally begins to be felt in California, many people run for the safety and warmth of their homes. They do not want to deal with the cold, wind, rain, and snow. Unfortunately, some people forget about the furry creatures that are under their care. After all, the cold weather affects animals just like it affects us.

Animals that are kept strictly outside should be provided with protection from the wind, rain, and snow. This means having some sort of insulated shelter with an entrance that faces away from the direction that wind usually blows. There should also be some sort of bedding on the ground, such as wood shavings, to help keep them dry and warm. The bedding should be changed or dried regularly.

Outdoor animals will also need more food, and have their water bowl checked constantly to ensure a good supply of water.

The cold also affects animals who spend most of their time indoors as well. After all, most dogs need to go outside to do their business a couple of times a day. If a pet owner wants to take good care of their furry companions this winter season, they should follow some of the tips below.

  • Always accompany dogs outside. Once you are too cold to be outside, bring them inside. This prevent them from getting too cold as well as keeps someone from forgetting about the animal outside.
  • Dry dog paws and bellies thoroughly after they have been outside. They could have snowballs stuck to them, even between their toes. This can lead to frostbite.
  • For dogs who live near frozen roads and sidewalks, drying their feet can also remove road salts, which if linked up in large portions and can cause digestive issues in dogs.
  • Dog breeds with short hair may need protective sweaters when going outside, since their fur is less suited to keeping them warm. However, don’t forget to remove and dry the sweaters after any outside trips. After all, wearing cold and wet clothes can be bad for anyone’s health.
  • Keep a close eye on older animals who have arthritis. The cold can cause them to stiffen up and become tender rapidly. Keep them on a tight leash, close to you to also help prevent any slip or fall injuries to the animal.

Another thing to be aware of in winter, is the fact that outdoors cats will be seeking shelter from the cold. They love to hide in warm engine compartments on vehicles, and don’t always move before the engine is turned on. In order to prevent any harm to an unsuspecting feline, bang on the hood of the car a few times before getting in and starting it up. This should scare them off without hurting them.

The cold weather isn’t always fun to deal with. Just remember that if you don’t want to be out in the cold, your pets probably don’t enjoy it much either. Give them the love and care they need this season to ensure that they stay happy and healthy until spring comes around again.

 

Have A Safe Holiday Season This Year

Have A Safe Holiday Season This Year

Have A Safe Holiday Season This Year

The holiday season is officially here, and many people are getting ready to have some fun at family, friends, or office parties. Everyone celebrates in their own special way, but many celebrations will be including alcohol. If that is the case, then a person should be prepared to get home safely that evening.

Holiday season is all about getting together with people you are close with. Since it’s a celebration, there will likely be a bit of alcohol consumed. If that does happen, the person needs to have a safe ride home since, as everyone knows, driving with alcohol in your system is dangerous and illegal.

In order to avoid getting pulled over, best case scenario, or getting into an accident, worst case scenario, a person should have a designated driver. This can be a someone who has not had any alcohol, or it can be a hired driver. That is the great thing about today’s modern world, it is so easy to get a taxi, Uber, or Lyft to take a person home. Often times, it can be done through an app on the person’s phone.

Drinking and driving is very dangerous, and results in dozens of deaths every single day in the United States.

It is estimated that a person is killed in a drunk driving related accident every 50 minutes. This is a statistic that no one wants to be a part of. Luckily, that can easily be avoided by drinking responsibly, and having a designated driver.

When a person has an assigned designated driver to get them home, they do not have to worry about how much alcohol they are consuming. All they really have to worry about is not giving the people they are with another embarrassing story to talk about for years to come.
 

The Legal Ins And Outs Of Hidden Cameras

The Legal Ins And Outs Of Hidden Cameras

The Legal Ins And Outs Of Hidden Cameras

Hidden cameras have become a surprisingly popular thing in the United States. These days, it seems like nearly everyone has a hidden camera, frequently called a nanny cam, tucked into their house. The question is: are nanny cams legal.

The answer isn’t as black and white as you may think. There are laws governing the recording of other people. However, if you have the nanny cam set up inside your house, even if you don’t tell anyone it’s there, you’re legally allowed to use it.

While you’re legally allowed to record the activities within your home, if you’re doing so in order to keep an eye on guests, babysitters, house sitters, or your neighbors, you need to consult with a good lawyer and find out what the specific laws are in your state and township. For example, there are some rooms you may not be allowed to use the camera, and there are often laws that prohibit the use of hidden cameras to spy on your neighbors. Another example is that many states have laws stating that you can’t set up a hidden camera in parts of the house where the guest expects privacy: namely bedrooms and restrooms.

It’s also important to know why you’re using the hidden cameras. It’s perfectly legal to use the camera to make sure your housekeeper and babysitter are doing their jobs correctly. It’s illegal to use footage gotten off a hidden camera to blackmail someone.

There are many shades of gray when it comes to using hidden cameras outside of the home. Most businesses are allowed to use the cameras both inside their establishment and parking lots.

One of the issues that has recently come up is the legality of hidden cameras that also make audio recordings. In California, the audio recording can only be used if both of the parties know that the conversation is being recorded. Other states that require two party consent include:

  • Florida
  • Maryland
  • Massachusetts
  • Washington
  • New Hampshire
  • Montana
  • Pennsylvania
  • Connecticut
  • Illinois

It’s important to note that in California, recorded telephone calls also require two party consent. You’re also not allowed to use a phone or hidden camera to deliberately record a conversation that wouldn’t be overheard if you were sitting just a few feet from the speakers.

You are also not allowed to set up hidden cameras in apartments that you’re renting to tenants.

 

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