Computer Crimes and Federal Offenses

Computer crime

If you are under investigation for a computer crime, or if you have already been arrested for such an offense, you are probably under a great deal of stress. Computer crimes involve a wide range of activities that are otherwise illegal. When people use a computer or the internet to further commit such crimes, then they are categorized as computer or internet crimes.

These days, nearly every aspect of our society is digitalized. People can download movies, apply for a credit card, transfer balances between accounts, and pay their bills all with the touch of a button. The expanding functions of the internet have opened a whole new world to criminal outlets and activities. Criminals are finding new ways to break the law at a pace that law enforcement is struggling to keep up with. Because computers have such a large impact on society as a whole, federal prosecutors waste no time or expense in securing criminal convictions against the individuals who commit such crimes. In fact, the federal government has entire task forces devoted to tracking down and arresting people who commit these types of crimes.

What categorizes a computer or internet crime? One common aspect of computer crimes involves financial fraud and money laundering schemes. Other financial crimes committed via the internet include credit and debit card fraud, hacking and identity theft.

Computer crimes also involve harassment, spamming, phishing, and sex crimes against children. People who possess child pornography on their home or work computer, and people who distribute child pornography via the internet are in violation of the law. Unfortunately, internet crimes involving children can oftentimes be a case of mistaken identity. Perhaps you were not aware that the images were of minors, or perhaps someone else used your computer. Revealing the truth of what actually happened will be dependent upon the highly investigative tactics of an experienced defense attorney.

Because these crimes typically cross state lines, they are often classified as federal offenses. If you are under investigation for a federal crime, you could have a large government entity assisting your local law enforcement agency. This means that the prosecution will have unlimited manpower and means to pursue a conviction. If you want to effectively protect your legal rights, you are going to need the assistance of a seasoned federal criminal defense attorney on your side. Your lawyer will have a wealth of proven defense tools at their disposal. The last thing you would want to do is hire an inexperienced or apprehensive lawyer when you are fighting to preserve your reputation and your freedom. If you are under investigation for a computer crime, don’t hesitate to contact a federal criminal defense attorney immediately.

Many firm has been providing their clients with outstanding defense representation for all sorts of federal and state criminal offenses. Whether your case is going to military, state or federal court, they have the knowledge, experience and tools necessary to protect your legal rights.

Remember things about free or low-cost legal services

low-cost legal services

How can you keep track of legal fees?

Get a fee agreement in writing. If an attorney is unwilling to put a fee agreement in writing, cross that attorney off your list. Some states require written fee agreements for most cases.

Ask your attorney to include in the fee agreement a provision for periodic, itemized billing. An itemized bill should list and describe all charges so that you can review them and compare them to your fee agreement.

You might want to arrange for a ceiling or limit on fees. You might also require your lawyer to get your approval before proceeding beyond a certain amount in legal costs. If you’ve hired an attorney to recover a $10,000 debt, you probably don’t want to pay $8,000 in legal fees to resolve the matter.

Depending upon your financial situation, you may be entitled to free legal services. If you are “indigent” within the meaning of any applicable state or federal guideline, you may be eligible for representation by a public defender in a federal or state criminal case. Low-income people may also qualify for free representation in landlord-tenant and divorce cases. If you need financial help in obtaining legal representation and think that you might qualify for indigent status, contact pro bono and legal services organizations in your area.

In many cases you don’t have to be indigent to get a lawyer for free or at little cost. Some organizations offer their members prepaid legal plans. Often plans include a low or no-cost consultation, or low-cost services in uncontested divorces or simple wills matters. Check your liability insurance policy. Your policy may include coverage for attorney fees or require your insurance company to provide an attorney to defend you in a lawsuit.

Many unions provide free legal services to their members in union-related matters. If your case or claim is work-related, talk to your union representative.

Certain rights or advocacy groups might want to get involved in your case. For example, if you are challenging an unlawful attack on your civil liberties or right to free speech, an organization such as the American Civil Liberties Union may be interested in helping you.

What should you do if you are charged with a crime but can’t afford a lawyer?

If you are indigent and if you are charged with a serious offense, you may be entitled to have an attorney appointed to represent you for free. The federal government and the states provide for the appointment of public defenders for indigent criminal defendants.

Little things add up. Carefully discuss with your lawyer anticipated miscellaneous costs so that you can estimate those costs up front and avoid any unpleasant surprises. Be prepared to scrutinize court costs, filing fees, secretarial time, and delivery charges.

Public defenders are paid by the government and are required to represent clients as vigorously and competently as private attorneys. Public defenders often are specialists with many years of experience in the defense of criminal cases. Don’t underestimate their expertise.

Accident Claims, Your Compensation And You

Accident Claims

In a bid to make a claim for compensation following her husband’s death a woman was recently shocked to find that her income was used as a yardstick for considering how much she would be paid. This prompted the woman into challenging this decision at an appellate court.

The appellate court, a High Court, made a decision setting aside the earlier ruling as it said the income of an accident victim’s family member should not have any bearing on the amount of compensation that they are entitled to after an accident.

As much as this issue is clearly resolved by this decision, it is worth the trouble to explore the circumstances leading to an accident claim and what could be considered it determining its success or failure.

What is accident claim?

Accident claims could be defined, according to a web dictionary, as compensation claims made by a victim (or victims) of an accident in which they sustain injuries or property is damaged. Accidents could range from minor to major ones and they could occur on the road, where cars or motorbikes or bicycles are involved, or at workplace as a result of inadequate training in the use of safety equipment and the like.

In addition, accidents could occur in private premises like retail stores or home or in public places and it could take forms like a slip or fall or something suddenly happening and resulting in some form of injury or damage, minor or serious.

Where any of the above occurs the victim is entitled to compensation, and claims must be made, especially if it is not the victim’s fault or as a result of their negligence.

How are claims for compensation considered?

Claims for accident compensation are usually awarded on the basis of certain essential variables. Among these are the seriousness or gravity of the claimant’s injuries, which could be both physical and psychological and the financial losses or damage incurred as a result of the injury.

In considering the financial losses suffered, the fact that an accident victim is practically put out of action and out of work is important for the success of the claim. It also plays a crucial role in determining how much could be awarded in the end. However, the most important factor in determining how much a claimant is awarded is the injury sustained. This explains why a claimant who would need physical assistance for the rest of their life is awarded the maximum compensation, usually, to enable them acquire equipment and hire the services of assistants that would help facilitate all the assistance they would need for as long as they are alive. In the same vein it says why someone whose injury does not render them physically dependent is awarded much less.

The loss of breadwinner’s income

In the scenario earlier mentioned, the woman whose breadwinner’s death renders them permanently unable to get the income that used to come in the form of the deceased’s salary, determining how much they get in compensation depends also how much is lost financially and the cause of the accident in the first place. But it is usually left for the court to decide on the account of evidence available to it. The onus of proving this is on the victim’s solicitor.

The court’s ruling in voiding the earlier decision is unambigous in that it debunked the conclusion that because the victim’s dependent had been given a job on compassionate ground removed the loss dependency suffered.

The above is one case that could vary from several hundreds of others. For accident claims to be successful there’s a need to show that someone else is at fault, resulting in the accident in which the victim suffered the injuries. Proving this is not as easy as it sounds, but solicitors often know how to go it, even on a no win, no fee basis.

Contracts and the Digital Warrior Beware the Form Agreement

Agreement

Web developers, graphic artists, software programmers and other Internet professionals often make the mistake of working without a net (pardon the pun). That is, they do business on a handshake. While the credo “my word is my bond” may be noble to live by, in business it is often the source of many problems. It seems that many of those digital warriors who do get signatures before they start a project, get them on form contracts that they find on the net or in a book. Misunderstood contracts can be just as dangerous, if not more so, than not having one at all.

So, why do digital warriors shun written contracts? Could it be the outrageous rates that an attorney would charge to draft them? Could it be that contracts are too complicated? After all the legalese is meaningless anyway? Isn’t it? (Of course not.)

Legal fees are not cheap, granted, but the costs associated with a breach of a poorly drafted agreement or no agreement at all will out weigh any costs you would have incurred as a result of having an attorney draft your contracts. An ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure, as the saying goes.

Here are some of the issues that you will encounter when your attorney drafts your operating agreement(s). This article does not presume to cover all of the topics you will need to consider. You should always seek legal advice from a competent attorney who is duly licensed in your jurisdiction.

The Parties 
Let’s get the most obvious thing taken care of first. Who are the parties? To answer that question you must ask yourself some other questions first. Do you want to allow your client to assign their rights to the agreement to someone else without your approval? Do you want the ability to delegate some of your duties without having to obtain permission from your client? (A web site developer may need to hire a freelance graphic artist; A programmer may need to hire someone familiar with another language.)

Warranties 
Do you know how to disclaim warranties? Did you know that you imply certain warranties in every agreement you enter into? Did you know that oral agreements are still agreements and you imply certain warranties in them as well?

It is reasonable for your client to warrant that it owns or has the right to use all the materials it supplies to you. Intellectual property is property, after all, and you do not want to be caught up in a claim by a third party for using materials supplied by the client which infringe on a third party’s rights.

Indemnification 
Regardless of whether your client has warranted that it owns or has the right to use all materials if supplied to you, you still may be sued by a third party for, let’s say, copyright infringement. If you had an indemnification clause in your agreement with the client, you would have an easier time recovering from your client your defense costs and any damages that assessed against you. Remember to include “reasonable attorneys fees” and “costs” in your indemnification clause.

Intellectual Property 
As a web site developer, graphic artist or programmer, you deal in intellectual property. This is your stock in trade. As the creator of an original work and absent an agreement to the contrary, you own a copyright in that work. This means that you control the work. You determine when and how to publish it, where and how to display it, when and how to modify it and how and when to create works which are derived from the original work. The mere fact that you were hired to create the work does not mean that the client owns any rights to the work.

Do you wish to license some rights to the client? Will you allow the client to have the web site hosted wherever it wants? Will you allow the client to install your database application on as many workstations as it sees fit? Will you allow the client to make copies of the work and sell it? These points (and others) are all points that should be negotiated before the commencement of any work and memorialized in a written agreement.

Beware of Arbitration Clauses 
Many contracts these days contain arbitration clauses, especially boiler plate contracts found on the net or in books. While, arbitration can be a viable alternative to litigation, you should understand the drawbacks as well as the benefits (which include speed of resolution and lower cost).

Another point that must be understood is that unless you find fraud, bias or some other egregious violation of the applicable act on the arbitrator’s part, you cannot appeal an arbitrator’s award. This is difficult for some to comprehend, especially in light of the facts that the arbitrator needs not follow any rules of evidence, not understand the law nor follow it even if it is understood.

An insight into crime scenes clean up services

crime scenes

Crime scene cleanup companies also clean unattended deaths, damaged environments due to tear gas, and other crime and distress scenes. The larger crime scenes that involve mass murder scenes, terrorist attacks and anthrax and other biochemical damage is also taken care by these companies. Crime Scene Cleanup services may also include bird and rodent infested areas. The cleaners in this case require special experience and equipment than a typical cleaning company’s experience and equipment.

Typically, crime scene cleanups start taking place only after the coroner’s office and other government bodies releases the “scene” back to the owner or some other responsible person concerned with it. The cleaning task can not begin till the police investigation is completely finished on the contaminated scene.

In most cases crime scene cleanup is a small business activity. Mostly, small cleaning services like carpet cleaning or water damage companies add services for Crime Scene Cleanup for diversifying their activities. The prominent and recognized organizations in this field of cleaning consist of the Institute of Inspection, Cleaning, and Restoration Certification (IICRC) and the American Bio-recovery Association (ABRA).

Earlier crime scene cleanup was a loathsome job but today it has become a lucrative business. Crime scene cleanup companies can charge anywhere between $100 to $600 per hour depending on the “level of trauma” and the quantity of hazardous material that the cleaners have to deal with and dispose of.

While a crime clean up service is ultimately a business like any other, advertising and marketing your services can be tricky. In a job that involves tragic death; most companies avoid mainstream methods of advertisement. Some choose the standard phone-book route while many others advertise on the side of their vans. Most of these companies largely depend on discreet options like passing out their business cards at service-industry gatherings, police stations and funeral homes.

An important requirement for success in this industry involves being considerate towards the sensitive nature of the work. There are certain crime scene clean-up companies that provide a grief counselor to the families at no cost while others offer discount to needy people. There are many countries where this type of service is funded by government or by religious organizations.

While some people call this emerging field a social trend of commercializing death, others call it plain capitalism. But for many others it still remains an essential service, a godsend. The fact is that whether you like it or loathe it but if you ever end up with blood and brains splashed all over your bedroom walls, you will definitely be relieved that there is someone you can call to clean it up.

suicide cleanup is taken up

A suicide generally involves close range of weapon to body and so in-depth decontamination and thorough cleaning is required. The cleaners also have to handle family members who might be present at the scene searching for answers that why their beloved person decided to end his/her life. The technicians need to remove all traces of any evidence of a suicide so that no remains are present for family members and friends that might remind them of the tragedy.

3 Methods on How to File Personal Bankruptcy That You Must Know

Personal Bankruptcy

How can you start with your bankruptcy? If you want to declare yourself bankrupt you have to start the bankruptcy process by filing the official bankruptcy forms. You need to know the various methods on how to file for bankruptcy. Your goal is to get the most inexpensive bankruptcy solution and save big money on legal expenses. This article will give you an overview of the different process of filing for bankruptcy. This article is not a substitute for legal counsel, and it is not intended to give you specific legal advice on your financial situation.

The Safest Method

This is the simplest and safest way to file personal bankruptcy — retain a bankruptcy attorney full-time. The attorney will help you through the entire bankruptcy process. It is the lawyer’s job to evaluate, prepare and file your papers. During the creditors meeting your attorney will address all the tough issues that may arise. The only negative in using this method is that it costs more. You must find a way on how to screen cheap bankruptcy attorneys in good order for you to get the best possible deal if you want to use this method.

The Hybrid Method

This method is the most followed technique in filing for bankruptcy. The hybrid method normally works best in filing Chapter 7. The key factor here is to hire the services of a lawyer or law firm to prepare your case. You need to pay the service provider with a flat fee. Once they file your papers you are on your own. You can save huge amount on legal fees because part of the solution is a do-it-yourself work. You should look for a bankruptcy preparation service that will also give you a short training on how to handle the do-it-yourself portion as part of the package.

The Cheapest Method

This method is a full self-help solution or “pro-se” filing. You need to educate yourself with the complexity of the bankruptcy laws. You can download the official bankruptcy forms free but it is usually easier to do this method if you buy an up-to-date bankruptcy kit or a good bankruptcy book. If you try to ask instructions from your local court clerks they will say they can’t help you. They will not give you advice on how to fill up the forms because that would be “practicing the law” — a task reserved only for licensed bankruptcy lawyers.

What to Do Next?

Now that you know the different ways of filing personal bankruptcy, which method are you going to use? The new bankruptcy law does not require you to have a lawyer, but it is in your best interest to seek the advice of an experienced bankruptcy lawyer. If you choose to file bankruptcy without the help of a lawyer, you will need to have to show a lot of patience and diligence. Keep in mind and remember that when it comes to filing bankruptcy, you either liquidate your assets or you protect them.