What You Need to Know About Getting Repeat DUI’s
You may have heard about Pennsylvania’s new laws regarding repeat DUI offenders. Read PennDot’s recent news release: Those committing repeated DUI offenses will face stricter penalties under a new Pennsylvania law. As a result, the law has changed the grading of certain DUI offenses.
The Act 59 of 2022, referred to as “Deana’s Law”, amends the Pa. Vehicle Code. This results in several changes including: 1) Increased grading for certain DUI offenses. 2) Required consecutive sentencing for certain repeat DUI offenders. 3) An 18-month driving privilege suspension for a DUI conviction graded as a 2nd degree felony, PennDOT said.
ESTATE PLAN UPDATES & REVIEWS
There are three main documents that encompass an estate plan:
- A Will
- A Power Of Attorney
- A Health Care Directive or Living Will
In addition, certain situations merit creating a Trust or retitling real estate. Estate planning documents should be reviewed every few years and revised as life changes require. Some examples of life events that may prompt a review of your estate plan include marriage, separation or divorce, birth of a child, death of a family member, acquisition or sale of significant assets, receiving an inheritance, moving into Pennsylvania from another State or Country, retirement from employment, eldercare parent or spouse situations, and changes to existing tax laws.
Thanksgiving Traditions New & Old
There is much to look forward to this Thanksgiving Day and holiday season! The staff of Pyfer, Reese, Straub, Gray & Farhat, P.C. shared a bit about their own traditions, plans, and eagerly anticipated moments this upcoming Thanksgiving weekend.
Lori, legal assistant to Attorney Sandra E. Gray, is most looking forward to the time she will be spending with family as she hosts the Thanksgiving meal. Her time with her family also includes the time she will be spending with her two Labradors, Lexi and Ellie.
Did You Get an Unjust or Questionable Traffic Ticket?
It’s probably that time of the year again when police departments may implement their holiday traffic citation quotas. Typically, in Pennsylvania, these quotas go into effect on December 1st and run through New Year’s Day. You may however, start to see an increase in police activity starting as early as November!
A Clean Bill of Health
Is there really such a thing as a Puppy Lemon Law? When most people think of the Lemon Law, they tend to think of it as something that applies only to cars. But the truth is, the Lemon Law can apply to just about any type of consumer product, including dogs. Dealing with legal issues can be stressful, especially when it involves your new pet. At Pyfer Reese, we understand the added devastation that comes with legal issues surrounding dogs. Our team of experts is here to help make your legal process as smooth and humane as possible.
Know Your rights
When someone is charged with a crime, they have the constitutional right to a speedy public trial. In the vernacular sense, time is an elusive creature in the modern criminal justice system. It is not unusual for criminal cases to take over a year to resolve from the time charges are filed. A careful and diligent lawyer can use the speedy trial rules to your advantage.
We are proud to be your Reader’s Choice Awards Winner
Thank you for choosing Pyfer Reese as your 2022 Reader’s Choice Awards Winner! We take great pride in providing our clients with unmatched service in all of our specialized areas of law. Our team of highly experienced attorneys and paralegals take the time to get to know you personally so we can provide you with quality service, advice and care.
When we prepare an estate plan for our clients, we strongly recommend that it include a will, a power of attorney, and often an advanced health directive. A power of attorney often referred to as a POA is a legal document that allows you as the principle to appoint another person to act as your agent or attorney-in-fact. The agent has the authority to act on your behalf and handle financial and personal affairs.
A power of attorney is important because a will has absolutely no effect until after the death of the person who wrote it. A POA allows a person (or persons) that you name as your agent (or agents) to act on your behalf while you are incapacitated or are unable or unavailable to act on your own behalf. You may also include a provision which allows your agent to receive medical information and give instructions to medical providers.
TRUSTS FOR ANIMALS/PETS
Section 7738 of the Decedents, Estates and Fiduciaries Code of Pennsylvania provides for the creation of an Animal Trust to provide for the care of pets upon the owner’s death or disability. Learn about Estate Planning, Trusts for Animals/Pets.
It is not generally recommended that a formal trust be established for the care of a pet. A better approach may be to discuss this issue with a family member or friend and obtain their agreement to care for the pet upon your death or disability. In this scenario, a specific sum of funds is set aside in your Will to provide for the expenses related to your pet’s ongoing care. This eliminates the need to establish a formal trust account which would require additional, unnecessary expenses. The informal animal care approach is certainly is the more cost effective approach.
The Social Security Administration (SSA) offers monetary benefits to individuals that qualify based on a disability that meets SSA statutes or, in the case of Supplemental Security Income (SSI), are low income eligible. The process of filing for Social Security Disability Insurance (SSDI) or SSI will vary for each individual, as each individual’s situation is unique. An attorney at Pyfer, Reese, Straub, Gray & Farhat, P.C. is available to assist you at any stage throughout the filing process, beginning with a free consultation.
Filing an Initial Application
The initial application can be filed in person at a local Social Security office, over the phone, by mail, or online at ssa.gov. If applying via paper forms, these will be sent to you in the mail for you to complete. While the initial application may seem straightforward, there are steps that you can take to best ensure that you are approved at the application level.
Accurate completion of these forms is critical to the decision that will be made in your case. The forms should be filled out appropriately and returned promptly. An applicant may be required to have an examination by SSA doctors during this time. The best steps for an individual to take at the application level are unique in each case and would require review prior to advice being provided. This first level can require approximately 3-6 months before a determination is made on your application.