Florida Senators Get Law Enforcement To Help In Puerto Rico

Florida Senators are trying to send out law enforcement in order to curb the crime in Puerto Rico. Bill Nelson and Marco Rubio sent a letter to Jeff Sessions on Thursday. The letter urged Sessions to work with law enforcement in order to curb the crime. There have been several reports of increased crime in Puerto Rico. Many of the businesses in the area are closed. Some places still do not have any power.

There were 46 murders last month. This is twice as many murders as there were last year around this time. Many of these murders are due to gang activity. Gang activity has been on the rise because of diminished police presence.

It has been four months since Hurricane Maria devastated Puerto Rico. It is estimated that 500,000 people in this country do not have any power. Christina Rodriquez has talked about how difficult it is to live in a place without any power. She said that she cannot buy any milk or eggs. She also stated that she cannot buy any eggs.

Christina and her husband Luis have been eating spam and canned sausages for months. She stated that might die of high blood pressure because of the massive amount of sodium. Despite the fact that there is a lot of crime in Puerto Rico, many people are coming together and making the most of a bad situation. Christina stated that many people are coming together and helping each other.

They do not have much, but they are sharing what they have. Christina and Luis cook for several people each day. They were serving 300 meals per day at one point.

Emojis and Emoticons Become a Legal Matter

In the legal profession, emojis and emoticons have become an urgent matter, even to the point that serious attempts are being made to determine what they mean and what should be done with them.
An emoji is a graphic symbol, often a “happy” face, which can be used to decorate a page of text. An emoticon is a visual representation that is usually comprised of numbers, letters or punctuation marks. Both are widely used in electronic messaging. Though seemingly harmless, they create a problem when the symbols accompany text in legal communications. The issue is whether emojis and emoticons somehow supplement or alter the meaning of the written information, clouding communications that are by their nature adversarial.
In one sexual harassment case, an emoji with a kiss mark on its face may have been an attempt to further humiliate the victim. In a similar case, an emoji seemed to represent merely another advance by the person accused of harassment. An Internet messaging case in Michigan involved the use of a visual representation that appeared to defame a local official, although a state court later ruled that the artwork was in fact insignificant. In still another incident, a judge ruled that artwork appearing on written communications had to be shown to a jury.
According to available statistics, emojis and emoticons appeared in 33 U.S. court cases last year. This indicates a rapid increase in their use in recent years, with 25 such appearances reported in 2016 and only 14 in 2015. More about this matter is available at www.reddit.com/r/law.
Those in the legal profession have begun to tackle this matter through meetings, seminars and the dissemination of official documents. Some of these symbols are more obvious than others, but it may still take a legal mind to decipher what each one of them means.

Key Legal Case Coming Up Next Month With Many Ramifications

A major legal case is coming up next month. In December, the Supreme Court of the United States will decide on a key law relating to civil rights. It is known as Masterpiece Cakeshop Ltd. v. Colorado Civil Rights Commission.

There are two issues at play here. One is the need for civil rights laws to protect the rights of all couples, regardless of orientation. Another is the right of businesses to choose which customers they want to serve. Which right is more important? The Civil Rights Act of 1964 decided that it is more important to protect civil rights than it is to let people choose who they want to hire. Will the Supreme Court decide that the same applies when it comes to businesses choosing their customers?

Another issue at play here is religious freedom. Do the store owner’s religious beliefs come into play here, and are they more important than protecting civil rights?

In a previous case, the Supreme Court, led by Justice Antonin Scalia, ruled against Native Americans who brought a lawsuit against the state of Oregon. It had to do with their religious ceremonies. The Supreme Court ruled that since the thing that they were not allowed to do was not based on religious discrimination, meaning that the law to prohibit it was neutral and not motivated by any religious factors, the Native Americans could not claim religious discrimination. It is possible that the Supreme Court will decide the same here, meaning that the civil rights laws are not motivated by any religious factors and are simply neutral. Therefore, it cannot be said that religious beliefs are being violated.

Another issue at stake here is whether compelling someone to bake a cake would be compelled speech, which is a violation of the First Amendment which guarantees the freedom of expression, meaning that you can choose to not say something as well.

Disappointed Lawyer Sues Oxford for $1.3 Million

A lawsuit by an Oxford University graduate is underway in London’s High Court. Former student Faiz Siddiqui alleges that when he graduated from Oxford he earned a less-desirable degree as a result of poor teaching and faculty negligence. According to Siddiqui’s suit, his low grades prevented him from attending law school at Yale University and damaged his burgeoning legal career.

Siddiqui enrolled at Brasenose College, Oxford in 1997 and began to study modern history. Like many Oxford students, he hoped to earn a first class honors degree from the school. However, after taking his final exams in 2000, Siddiqui discovered that he had instead received an upper second class bachelor of arts honors degree.

Siddiqui’s lawsuit alleges that poor teaching and low faculty numbers were responsible for his depressed grades. In his suit, he claims that teachers were overworked and inadequately prepared to deal with an increased number of students. According to Siddiqui, many of the college’s teachers were on sabbatical, leaving only one tutor to assist students with the Indian special subject portion of the exams. The lawsuit alleges that this tutor was in charge of twice the number of students that college tutors typically supervise. Siddiqui also cites another student from his class who submitted complaints to the university after she received low grades on the same exams. Furthermore, Siddiqui claims that the university failed to take a medical condition into account when grading his exams; his doctors had diagnosed him with severe hay fever, a condition which they said would affect his concentration.

Siddiqui claims that his second-class decree from Oxford left him depressed and unable to sleep. He states that as a result of these emotional problems, he performed poorly in his duties at several different jobs he has held over the years and eventually became unemployed. He is suing Oxford University for a total of $1.3 million. As part of his suit, Siddiqui is also seeking restitution for lost earnings.

Judge Rules On Trump’s CFPB Pick

In recent legal news, a judge in Washington has given a victory to President Donald Trump. After the resignation of the previous director of the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau, President Donald Trump appointed Mick Mulvaney as the new director. However, the deputy director, Leandra English, filed a lawsuit in order to get a restraining order to prevent Mick Mulvaney from taking charge of the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau. Leandra English claimed that she was the rightful director and that she should have taken over after the previous director resigned.

 

Judge Timothy Kelly refused the restraining order on Tuesday morning. He said that there is a very small likelihood that the case would be able to proceed based on its merits. Leandra English argued that the Dodd-Frank Act made her the rightful director. However, Judge Timothy Kelly said that the Federal Vacancies Reform Act seems to apply to this situation. The Federal Vacancies Reform Act would give President Donald Trump the ability to appoint a new director for the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau.

 

Mick Mulvaney is the head of the Office of Management and Budgets. However, Judge Kelly said that there is nothing that would prevent him from heading both departments. In addition, he added that denying Donald Trump the ability to appoint Mick Mulvaney as the head of the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau would raise significant constitutional issues.

 

The Dodd-Frank Act says that the deputy shall serve as acting director in the absence or unavailability of the director. However, the Department of Justice said that the Dodd-Frank Act does not replace the Federal Vacancies Reform Act, which gives the president the ability to temporarily appoint a director of an agency that is subject to Senate confirmation. In other words, either one of those acts can be invoked. Leandrea English is considering her steps and may seek an injunction against the ruling.

What Legal Actions Awat Harvey Weinstein?

Movie mogul Harvey Harvey Weinstein’s is having a rough time. More than fifty women (and some men) have come forward claiming that the film maker has sexually harassed them at different times over a long period of time.

The picture that is emerging is that of a powerful and influential figure in the film industry using his position for undignified gains. On the other hand, Weinstein has acknowledged that has “caused a lot of pain,” yet still claiming that some of the allegations are “patently false.”

But it is the legal implications of the long list of allegations that is likely to cause even more drama. Employment and labour law attorney Ann Fromholz said that regardless of Weinstein’s influences and his position at the company, The Weinstein Co. would be liable over sexual harassment claims even if they weren’t aware.

The four member board of the company had indicated that their commitment to participating in any investigations. “We are committed to assisting with our full energies in all criminal or other investigations of these alleged acts, while pursuing justice for the victims and a full and independent investigation of our own.” Read, a statement from the board.

Several board members resigned in the wake of the allegations. Details of whether the company or Weinstein had made any payments have not been substantiated.

Top celebrities, including award winning actress Angelina Jolie, Ashley Judd,Gwyweth Paltrow among others have given grotesque accounts of their encounter with Weinstein at different times in their career. Actress Rose McGowan is reported to have reached a $100 000 settlement with Weinstein to “avoid litigation and buy peace,” after an ugly encounter with the film mogul in a hotel room during the Sundance Film Festival in 1997.

The allegations on Harvey Weinstein have cast a pale shadow on work ethics in Hollywood. Focus now shifts to whether there will be lawsuits emerging from the Weinsten scandal even as Weinstein reportedly takes time for counseling and to concentrate on his family.

Wells Fargo Faces Will Spend Billions in Legal Fees

Banking giant Wells Fargo is making shareholders and investors very nervous as its legal bills keep getting more and more exorbitant. The American bank is keeping law firms quite busy as it faces multiple legal challenges ranging from consumer fraud to improper mortgage lending practices, and the total cost of legal representation, settlements, court fees and fines could total more than $3.3 billion.

 

In a recent financial filing reported by Bloomberg, Wells Fargo indicated that it allocated $1 billion more than the previous quarter to its legal defense fund. The bank’s Chief Financial Officer has hinted that Wells Fargo will likely settle with financial regulators and aggrieved mortgage borrowers in the next few months, but there have been no indications of how much the settlement amounts may be. The bank needs to make strong investments in legal operations now for the purpose of keeping settlements as low as possible; this is a case in which a single legal misstep could put the bank out of business.

 

In July 2017, Wells Fargo estimated that it would have to pay $80 million to aggrieved account holders who were charged for auto insurance coverage that they never requested; in the financial world, this unethical practice is known as “slamming.” A November filing by Wells Fargo indicates that the bank underestimated this loss considerably since it will now have to pay $150 million; in general, each financial report issued by the bank this year has seen an increase of legal fees, a situation that shareholders are not happy with.

 

An interesting aspect of the various cases Wells Fargo is currently facing is that former executives and directors are being held personally accountable. Whereas in the past a simple dismissal of executive board members was the typical corporate reaction to major scandals, a federal district judge in San Francisco overseeing the Wells Fargo case recently determined that claims against former bank directors should face legal scrutiny in certain circumstances.

Equifax Defends Legality of Executive Stock Sales

This summer’s hack of Equifax’s customer data has left nearly 150 million Americans in question of whether or not their data was included in the breach. The attack, which began in May and wasn’t caught until July, was further punctuated by a malware incident involving the company’s website in the following October, resulting in the suspension of a deal with the IRS. While the company will inevitably face legal repercussions, whether in the form of Justice Department action or through suits from individual customers, a recent internal inquiry has allegedly cleared members of the company from wrongdoing in at least one aspect of the case.

 

In the immediate days following the Equifax breach, it was reported that a group of several key executives sold off a large quantity of shares. With a value approaching $2 million, the sale of these shares was immediately the target of a probe led by the the Securities and Exchange Commission and Georgia’s U.S. Attorney’s Office. Equifax first became aware of the hack on July 29th, with the four executives in question jettisoning their stocks the following first week of August.

 

Given the timeline, it seemed more than likely that the sellers had been made aware of the hack, thereby making this an example of insider trading. However, Equifax maintained that Douglas Brandberg, an investor relations lead, Joseph Loughran, president of information solutions, John Gamble, the CFO, and Rodolfo Ploder, the president in charge of workforce solutions, were not among whose who had knowledge of the attack before its public announcement.

 

Equifax led its own internal investigation, which this week revealed its determination that the trade did not break any legal bounds. The investigative teamed performed well over 30 interviews and sifted through roughly 55,000 emails but found no evidence that the four executives in question had advanced knowledge, and likewise determined that the sales were approved following the necessary legal procedures. That said, it’s unclear if or how this internal investigation will affect legal proceedings from U.S. officials.

6 Things You Shouldn’t Do to the Flag

Here are some things that people do to the American flag that are considered disrespectful according to the Flag Code.

 

  1. Wearing American Flag Patterned Clothing

 

The U.S. Flag Code 176, letter D, states that the U.S. flag pattern is not to be used as wearing apparel. This means that all those flag printed bikinis, button-up shirt, socks, and even those Old Navy flag shirts, can be considered disrespectful.

 

  1. The Flag Shouldn’t Be Displayed Flat or Horizontally

 

The flag must never touch the ground. Most people know this, but only a few know that the flag has to be displayed vertically. The U.S Flag Code 176, letter C, states that the American flag should never be held horizontally.

 

  1. Disposable Flag Products

 

Using disposable flag printed cups and plates can be considered disrespectful. Therefore, think twice before buying any of those flag printed plates or cups.

 

  1. Using the Flag for Advertising Purposes

 

During Independence Day, you will see a lot of brand products being decorated with the U.S. flag. Well, according to the law, using the flag to advertise brand products is strictly prohibited.

 

  1. Using the Flag on Costumes or Athletic Uniform

 

Teams in the NBA, NFL and other leagues normally sell and wear jerseys and other athletic gear featuring the United States flag. However, the Flag Code states that no portion of the flag should be used as an athletic uniform or costume. Only a flag patch can be used on policemen, firemen, military personnel and members of patriotic organizations uniforms.

 

  1. Drawing on the Flag

 

Attaching or placing any drawing, figure, letter, mark or insignia on the flag is illegal. In simple words, don’t add anything to the U.S. flag or even edit a picture over the flag.

 

The Flag Code has it that the flag should not bear any mark, word, letter, figure, design or drawing of any nature.

Corporate And Individual Taxes To Get Cut In The Proposed Republican Tax Bill

As written in an article by Rachel Gerber on 2nd November 2017, the JURIST, also known as the Committee on Ways and Means of the Republican Controlled House of Representatives released a proposal on jobs act and tax reduction. Kevin Brady, who chairs the committee, introduced the so-called Tax Cuts and Jobs Act on Thursday this week.

 

Paul Ryan, the House Speaker, co-sponsored Kevin Brady’s proposal. According to the article, Brady emphasized that the bill intended to help the American people who belonged to the low and the middle class. He further said that the American legislation got wholly focused on:

  • Growing the economy
  • Taking the jobs back to the local communities
  • Increase salaries for the workers
  • Ensuring that Americans got to save more of their earnings.

Rachel Garber indicated in the article that the proposed Act will not only lower tax rates for all the earning Americans within the low and middle class but will also lower business taxes. The article further explains that the Child Tax will get expanded and renamed the Family Credit to accommodate additional aid and support. Tax Credit will get added to the new Family Credit. High earning Americans will retain their usual tax rate of 39.6 percent. Rachel further indicates that the estate tax will get phased out by the end of the year 2023.

 

The article got published on Paper Chase, the JURIST’s news service provider. Comprising of a team of 30 editors and reporters who are law students, the Paper Chase provides real-time legal news. The team gets led by a university professor, Bernard Hibbitts, who teaches law at Pittsburg School of Law. The paper offers an educational service which explains why they get dedicated to presenting critical legal news. The format used in the presentation is accessible. The news is not only presented intelligently but also objectively. The materials get spread and presented rapidly.