Divorce

Nobody likes divorce.  Unless you are able to salvage your marriage, the best we can do in a divorce is to protect your rights.  If you are a stay at home mother, we will see that you receive your fair share of the property which you and your husband acquired during your marriage. We will aggressively demand your rights to child support and custody.

On the other hand, if you are a husband going through a divorce, we will see that your wife receives no more money than she is allowed by law.

Either way, we will work to get you divorced as quickly and painlessly as possible.

Call me at 501-604-4525 or e-mail me at srd@stevenrdavislaw.com to discuss divorce, custody, visitation, paternity or any other family law issues.

 

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Plan Ahead

If you expect to leave any money or property to your children or loved ones, it is essential that you prepare and plan how you want your property, which is also known as your estate, to be divided.  Some people will put  money or property in a joint account with a child or another person with the expectation that after they die, the other person on the joint account will divide the property equally among their other children or loved ones.  Human nature being what it is, many joint account holders fail to divide the dead person’s money or property as intended.   Even worse, some joint account holders help themselve to the money in the joint account during the lifetime of the person who put the money into it.

You should only name a person as the executor of your will or the trustee of your trust if you can trust them absolutely.  In my opinion, it is better to hold your money or property in a living trust for your benefit during your lifetime and for the benefit of your loved ones after you die.   It would even be better to allow your estate to go into probate, knowing that your executor would have to carry out your wishes.

Please call me at 501-604-4525 or e-mail me at srd@stevenrdavislaw.com to discuss planning your estate, or to draw up a will or a living trust.

 

 

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What is hearsay?

You may have heard the word “hearsay” used in connection with the law.  Hearsay is an out of court statement which is used to prove the truth of the matter being asserted.  For example, if I tell you what someone else told me and represent that what I’m telling you that someone told me is the truth, then my statement to you is hearsay.

As a general rule, hearsay is not admissible in court to prove the truth of the statement in question.  Due process of law and the Rules of Evidence provide that you have a right to confront your accusers.  There are notable exceptions to the hearsay rule.  For example, if a person robbed a bank and bragged about it to a friend, the friend’s testimony that the bank robber admitted he robbed the bank is admissible as an admission against interest, even though it is hearsay.  Certain business records are admissible, even though they are hearsay.

 

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My Charges have been Filed Direct. What does that mean?

When a person is first arrested on criminal charges, his or her case is usually assigned to the District Court.  The District Courts have the authority (jurisdiction) to decide misdemeanor cases and to conduct preliminary hearings on felony cases.

However, if the prosecuting attorney believes there is a strong case against a criminal defendant, the prosecuting attorney may bypass the preliminary hearing and file the charges directly in Circuit Court.  That is what is known as direct filing.  The document the prosecutor files is called an Information.  That way, the prosecuting attorney can avoid presenting his case before filing it in Circuit Court.

If the prosecutor believes the case against the suspect is strong, it is very common for the charges to be filed directly in Circuit Court.

If your case has been assigned to Circuit Court, you definitely need an experienced criminal defense lawyer.  If you need legal help with criminal charges in Central Arkansas, call me at 501-604-4525 or e-mail me at srd@stevenrdavislaw.com to discuss your case.

 

 

 

 

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We are personal injury lawyers.

I have successfully  represented clients in personal injury cases for over 25 years.  As a solo practitioner, I can give you personal service you are not likely to find at a high volume personal injury firm that advertises on television.  I won’t hand your case off to a “claims manager” to prepare the case for me or negotiate with the insurance company.  If your case goes to trial, I will try it, and not some junior associate.

Like the guys who advertise on television, if you don’t get any money, I don’t get paid.  So if I agree to represent you, you know that I believe in your case.

 

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What’s the difference between Chapter 7 and Chapter 13 Bankruptcy?

Chapter 7 is known as a liquidation.  That’s not as bad as it sounds.  Most people who file Chapter 7 do not have to give up any property.  You do, however, have to disclose all of your assets and all of your debts.  You have to file and income and expense statement.  Chapter 7 is most appropriate for people who have large amounts of unsecured debt, such as credit card debt or medical expenses.   You do not have to make payments in Chapter 7.  At the conclusion of the Chapter 7 Bankruptcy, usually about 120 days after you file, you receive a discharge of your debts, which means that most of your debts are forgiven.

On the other hand, Chapter 13 is known as a wage earner’s plan.  In Chapter 13, the Debtor pays a portion of his income to the Chapter 13 Trustee to distribute among his or her creditors.  The Chapter 13 Plan can last up to 5 years.  At the end of the Chapter 13 Plan, the debtor also receives a discharge.  Chapter 13 is appropriate for persons who have a regular income and want to catch up on past due mortgage payments or car payments.  Some individuals with higher incomes who need bankruptcy protection cannot file Chapter 7 and need to file under Chapter 13.

Please call me at 501-604-4525 or e-mail me at srd@stevenrdavislaw.com if you have questions about which Chapter is right for you.

 

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How can you represent a criminal defendant when you know he’s guilty?

Sometimes people ask me how can you defend someone when you know he’s guilty?  That’s cerrtainly a fair question.  Our Founding Fathers believed that everyone was entitled to an attorney to defend him or her against criminal charges.  They provided that we were entitled to a speedy and public trial.   We have the right to demand a trial by a jury of our fellow citizens.

I believe our prosecuting attorneys do a good job enforcing the law and bringing the guilty to justice.  However, they are human and they do make mistakes.   In recent years DNA has proved that many people have been falsely convicted of crimes.  Often this has resulted because of a rush to justice, or because someone did not have a good lawyer to defend them.

If you have been charged with a crime in Arkansas, whether felony or misdemeanor, state or federal court, I would be glad to visit with you.  Please call me at 501-604-4525 or e-mail me at srd@stevenrdavislaw.com

 

 

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We help people with their debts.

Are your finances out of control?  Do you have so many debts you don’t know what to do next?  You don’t know who to  pay next?   Are bill collectors calling you all the time demanding payment?  Are you facing repossession of your car?  Is your home about to be foreclosed?

We may be able to help.  Bankruptcy can give you a fresh start.  Bankruptcy can give you some breathing room so you can see your situtation a little more clearly.  If you are facing foreclosure or repossesion, Bankruptcy may give you a chance to catch up on your house payments or car payments and keep your home or vehicle.   If you have a lot of medical debt or credit card debt, you may be able to hve those debts forgiven, or discharged, by filing bankruptcy.   If your income is below a certain level, you may not have to pay any portion of your credit card or medical debts.  

You may be able to cancel a lease or rental agreement by filing bankruptcy.

Please feel free to call me at 604-4525 to discuss your financial situation with no obligation.

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We defend accused people

We have successfully defended people accused of crimes since 1979.  We represent people in circuit court, district court, municipal court, juvenile court, and federal court.   If you hire me, I will be with you every step of the way, from plea and arraignment, to pretrial motions, to trial, and on appeal if necessary.   

We have defended people accused with all sorts of crimes:  possession of  controlled substances (methamphetamine, cocaine, crack cocaine, and marijuana, tylenol with codeine), conspiracy to possess controlled substances, aggravated robbery, bank robbery, murder, illegal re-entry by an alien into the United States, theft of property (embezzlement, shoplifting, and other forms of theft),  felon in possession of a firearm, rape, enticement of a minor (police stings to lure men into supposed meetings with underage girls), food stamp fraud, Medicaid fraud, forgery, and many others.

Please call me at 501-604-4525 to discuss your criminal case at no obligation.  Whether you hire me or not, don’t talk to the police without a lawyer present if you even think you might be a suspect.  A wise old attorney once told me that a lot more people have talked themselves into the penitentiary than out of it.

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Bankruptcy can give you peace of mind and a fresh start.

I represent people with debt problems in U.S. Bankruptcy Court.  If you have debts you cannot pay, federal law provides a means for having those debts forgiven, or discharged.  Generally, you may seek protection under either Chapter 7 or Chapter 13 of the Bankruptcy Code. 

Chapter 7 is a liquidation of debts.  If the Court approves a Chapter 7 plan, you do not have to pay anything to your creditors.   Most people who qualify for Chapter 7 do not have to give up any property as a result of  filing bankruptcy.   At the end of the bankruptcy, your debts or fogviven, or discharged.  Not all debtors qualify for Chapter 7, but if you do, then you don’t have to make payments over time.   The filing fee for Chapter 7 is $299.00, and attorney’s fees are paid on the front end. 

Chapter 13 is a payment plan in which you pay off all or a portion of your debts to creditors over a period of time, up to 5 years.  In Chapter 13, you  pay a portion of your income to the Chapter 13 Trustee, who then pays most of that money out to creditors.   In order to qualify for Chapter 13, you must have a regular source of income.  This can be wages, self-employment, or perhaps disability benefits or a pension.  Chapter 13 has some advantages over Chapter 7.  A Chapter 13 plan can allow you to catch up on past due mortgage payments or car payments and thus avoid foreclosure or repossession.   While the Chapter 13 debtor must pay a filing fee of $274.00 up front,  there are no additional out of pocket fees to get started.  Attorney’s fees are paid through the Chapter 13 plan.    

If you are having trouble with debts and need advice, please call me at 501-604-4525.   We understand that anyone can get into debt trouble.    We will treat you with respect.  Filing bankruptcy can stop the harrassing phone calls from debt collectors, it can stop garnishments, and you may be able to prevent foreclosures or repossessions.   I will happy to talk with you, either in person or by phone, with no obligation,  to decide whether bankruptcy is right for you.

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