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A DWI arrest is a hard lesson to learn

As the semester comes to an end, you were probably looking forward to kicking back with some friends. With the pressure off, you wanted to let down your guard and enjoy a few drinks and some good times. However, what started as a good time ended quickly when police pulled you over for suspected drunk driving.

Whether this is your first offense or you have been through this before, you may be facing consequences that could set you back financially for the foreseeable future. This does not even take into account the affects a DWI conviction will have on other areas of your young life.

Make sure you aren't buying trouble when you purchase a home

The decision to purchase a home is an exciting step for any Texas resident, but any prospective homeowner would be wise to make sure that he or she is not also buying a bunch of hidden problems as well. Home purchases are major financial and legal decisions, and there are certain pitfalls that any person would be wise to try to avoid.

If you are looking for a home, have already made an offer on a home or are already under contract on a home, you could benefit from the assistance of an attorney who can help protect your interests. Many people fail to see the importance of having a lawyer when buying a home, but securing legal guidance can pay off for you should complications arise.

Do you know your 4th Amendment rights?

When you see flashing lights in your rear-view mirror, you may sense a sudden panic. Your mind may race to figure out what you did wrong that caused the police to pull you over. In the end, it may be something simple like a broken taillight, you missed a stop sign or you were going over the speed limit.

Why would the police officer ask to examine the inside of your car for a seemingly simple traffic violation? It may seem unnecessary, even if you drove significantly over the speed limit. Would you know how to respond to such a request?

How to get medical treatment after an accident

Getting medical treatment is the most important thing you can do after a car wreck. Obviously, you should get medical treatment so that you can recover from your injuries. However, there is another reason, as well. Getting medical treatment can help protect your personal injury or insurance claim.

How going to the doctor can protect your claim

There are many reasons people do not go to the doctor after a car accident. They might not think they need medical attention if their injuries don't seem severe enough. Going to the doctor might give them anxiety. Or they might not have insurance or money to pay for the visit.

However, you should not let these reasons or any others prevent you from going to the doctor after a car wreck. Here is why: The insurance company will use it against you. They will say that you must be exaggerating your injuries because if you had been seriously injured, you would have gone to the doctor immediately.

This argument is used time and time again, and unfortunately, it often works in the insurance company's favor.

How to prevent a lawsuit from ruining your business

If you own a small business, chances are that you (or your business) will be sued at some point. In fact, the longer your business is open, the more likely it is that you will be involved in litigation of some type.

It could be a slip and fall claim filed by someone who tripped while walking into your store. It could be a discrimination suit filed by a disgruntled former employee. It could be a contract dispute filed by a supplier who feels duped.

Although some businesses are much more prone to lawsuits than others (think: a ziplining business versus an Etsy shop), all business owners expose themselves to potential lawsuits each time they enter an agreement or hire an employee.

Even being successful enough to have competitors can lead to lawsuits, whether they are legitimate or not. Unfortunately, even "frivolous" lawsuits can be very expensive and can destroy everything a business owner has worked for.

What you need to know about divorce and taxes

Gone with the Wind author Margaret Mitchell said: "Death, taxes and childbirth! There's never any convenient time for any of them." Mitchell could have easily included divorce on that list as well.

But, unlike with death, taxes and childbirth, people can usually choose when to file for divorce, and some base that decision on taxes.

What was your marital status on Dec. 31?

Your filing status for the tax year depends on what your marital status was on Dec. 31. If you were still married on Dec. 31, 2016, then you could file jointly one last time, even if your divorce was pending. However, if your divorce was finalized by that date, then you will have to file as a single taxpayer (or head of household status if you are a custodial parent).

For this reason, some people choose to wait until the new year to finalize the divorce process if the marital deduction will give them a lower tax bill.

Are reports of massive roundups of undocumented immigrants true?

It's no secret that Donald Trump promised to take an aggressive approach against illegal immigration while on the campaign trail, and now that he has been sworn in as president, many immigrants in Texas and elsewhere are understandably anxious.

There have been numerous reports that U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) has begun massive roundups of undocumented immigrants in various cities throughout the country, including reports of raids, vehicle checkpoints and random ID checks in Central Texas.

However, officials from the U.S. and Mexican governments say that these reports are largely untrue and that reports of recent apprehensions -- including at least 160 people who were detained over dive days in California in early February -- were part of a routine "enforcement surge" and were not tied to President Trump.

How to handle a power imbalance in divorce

Divorce is naturally a difficult process to go through, but if a power imbalance exists between the two spouses, it can make the whole process even more traumatic for the spouse with less power.

If your husband or wife has been controlling and overpowering during your marriage, you may find comfort in learning that there are ways to level the playing field during your divorce.

In a healthy marriage, each spouse has the same value and worth. They will discuss issues and reach mutual decisions even if they have to compromise.

However, if your spouse assumed more power and tried to control you in the marriage, he or she will likely also try to maintain control of all the decisions in the divorce. This could leave you at a significant disadvantage.

What homeowners need to know about land use and zoning laws

Congratulations, you purchased a home and the land that it sits on. It's yours to do whatever you'd like with, right? Not so fast. Land use and zoning laws could limit your options.

Land use and zoning laws are in place in most major urban and suburban areas in the U.S. in effort to maintain order and protect the environment.

Have you ever noticed how urban and suburban areas are generally divided into residential areas, business areas and industrial areas? That's not just coincidence; it's the result of planning and zoning regulations.

Land use and zoning regulations at the local level also lay out how land owners can use their property. Here are a few examples of restrictions that many municipalities have on the books:

Arrests common this time of year for Texas State students

Between back-to-school partying, Homecoming festivities and Halloween, this is a time of year when many Texas State University students find themselves in trouble with the law. Common criminal charges faced by college students include:

  • Underage drinking
  • DWI
  • Drug crimes, including marijuana possession
  • Theft, burglary and property crimes
  • Assault
  • Sexual assault

Any one of these charges needs to be taken very seriously in order to avoid the harshest consequences, which can include jail time, major fines, a permanent criminal record, driver's licenses suspension and academic consequences such as getting kicked out of school.

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