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Maryville Tennessee Legal Blog

How to choose a new doctor after leaving the pediatrician

Going to the doctor is very difficult for some people. They simply fear hearing bad news even if they know they are healthy. This fear can be instilled in people at a young age, which is why many people in their 20s still visit their pediatrician.

Most young people are healthy, which leads them to delay in finding a doctor to visit who tends to adults instead of children. Here's how to switch from a pediatrician to a family physician.

What does 2018 hold for homebuyers and sellers?

Spring is the most popular season for home sales, and real estate experts are predicting that 2018 will see a lot of them. Whether you're a buyer or seller, it's important to do your homework on the current trends in housing sales to get the greatest benefit from a real estate transaction.

Tennessee's residential housing market, like that of all states, is unique. Like other states, it also varies by region. However, real estate experts say there are several things that anyone involved in a real estate transaction this year should know.

What actions are considered obstruction of justice?

The term "obstruction of justice" sounds like the stuff of FBI investigations and large-scale cases regarding money laundering or corporate malfeasance. However, it covers a much broader range of activities that involve impeding an investigation or prosecution of a crime. Obstruction of justice can result in felony charges.

Lying to law enforcement authorities is a common form of obstruction. In this country, we are not required to answer a police officer's or other law enforcement agent's questions. We can also invoke marital or spousal privilege to avoid incriminating a spouse. However, if someone knowingly makes false statements to law enforcement, whether verbally or in writing, he or she is breaking the law.

How do you ask for a prenup?

Prenuptial agreements are becoming de rigueur for couples planning to marry. Over 60 percent of family law attorneys in a recent survey said they have had more clients seeking prenups in recent years than previously. This includes younger adults commonly known as "millennials."

One family law attorney advises that prenups are often best discussed while you're in a serious dating relationship with someone, but before you've become engaged. "That way, you can gauge your partner's reaction to one," she says. "If the reaction is to move to the other room, then you know you will need to handle with extra sensitivity."

Legal guidance is often a crucial part of homebuying

For many first-time home buyers, it may not seem important to enlist the help of an attorney in the buying process. Unfortunately, this is almost certainly because they don't understand how many ways a home purchase can go sideways, making the process far more expensive in the long run or possibly even dismantling the deal altogether. If homebuyers do not navigate this process carefully, other parties may have grounds to sue.

Not only does an attorney help review the small mountain of documents necessary for a home purchase, he or she can also do in-depth research to ensure that no unpleasant or costly surprises crop up in the transfer or afterward.

Key estate planning considerations for new parents

Whether individuals have a large number of assets or just a few valuable ones, it is important that they distinguish who should receive them after their passing. A proper estate plan can help with this, and allow testators to provide for their loved ones once they are gone. 

Particularly, parents should truly consider how an estate plan could help make sure their children maintain stability even if they are not around. In creating or revising an estate plan as a new or seasoned parent, there are a few key things to consider.

Falsely reporting a crime can have serious legal consequences

It is illegal to intentionally make a false report of a crime to law enforcement. In most cases, it's a misdemeanor. However, depending on the type of crime reported and the amount of manpower called out to deal with it, the person accused of making the false report can be charged with a felony.

That's what has occurred in a recent high-profile case of "swatting" that had tragic consequences. (Swatting refers to a SWAT team or similar law enforcement response.)

Digital spying is changing the modern divorce

More Americans are using digital methods to spy on their partners when their marriages are no longer working. According to a large number of investigators, divorce attorneys and a family court judge interviewed by NPR, increasing numbers of divorcing couples are turning to spying on their partners via their smartphones. 

Easy access to this technology is making it simple to know exactly where someone is at any point in the day. In addition to features such as Find My iPhone, ex-partners can install spyware on smartphones. These apps typically have a subscription fee and once installed can track someone’s every text message, phone call, web search and keystroke.

Why do Tennesseans need a living will?

If you are a Tennessean who is considering putting an estate plan into place, one of the terms you'll hear from your attorney is "living will." This is a document you can use to designate your wishes on things like what you wish your end-of-life care to be and what procedures you wish, if any, to be used to prolong your life.

For example, if you suffer a catastrophic brain injury that would prevent you from ever regaining cognitive functions, would you still want to be kept alive? If you were suffering from incurable cancer with only a few weeks to live, all of which would be spent in pain, would you wish to continue being fed intravenously?

Understanding some important estate planning terms

When you begin working on your estate plan, you'll hear a lot of terms you've never thought much about before. It's essential to know what they mean.

Four terms that are often used interchangeably in general discourse around estate planning are "trustee," "executor," "administrator" and "personal representative." These all refer to people who have a fiduciary responsibility to ensure that the estate is handled responsibly. There are distinctions among them, however. How these people are referred to depends in part on what type of estate plan you have.

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