The Albarado Law Firm, P.C.

Gainesville Legal Issues Blog

Know your rights if asked to take a field sobriety test

Nothing can put a damper on your travel time quite like a Texas police officer pulling you over in a traffic stop. If you were already having a bad day, an unexpected traffic stop might just be the final straw that causes your stress monitor to short circuit. While such situations are indeed stressful, you're likelier to obtain a positive outcome if you remain calm and if you know your rights ahead of time.

Some traffic stops start out one way then diverge into much more serious situations. For instance, if the police officer sees a beer can in your car or thinks he or she smells alcohol on your breath, he or she may request you to step out of your vehicle. That's a sure sign the officer suspects you of a crime, most likely drunk driving.

Are you at risk of a suspended or revoked license?

When a police officer pulled you over, you may have expected that the worst-case scenario would be that you got a ticket for speeding or for having a taillight out. Unfortunately, your mind did not picture the actual worst-case scenario you could face because you ended up accused of driving under the influence.

While you may have had a few drinks earlier in the evening, you likely did not feel as if it had negatively affected your driving ability. Still, if an officer believes otherwise, you could wind up in a serious legal situation. You may even be at risk of having your driver's license suspended or revoked.

Divorce, retirement and preserving your financial future

Divorce is a difficult process, and it can be especially difficult for people who are closer to retirement age. Gray divorce is a term used to describe a divorce involving two people who are over the age of 50. Over the last few decades, the number of gray divorces has been increasing, which means more people are looking at bleak financial futures after their divorces are final.

Divorce often leads to financial struggles for both parties, even if they are wealthy. Dividing marital property, paying spousal or child support, selling the family home, or finding a new place to live are all costly. Studies suggest that people who divorce can expect to see their overall wealth decrease by approximately 50%. With this in mind, you understand how important it is to fight for a fair property division order.

Don't count on that roadside breath test to be right

When police pull you over and suspect you of drunk driving, they may ask that you participate in field sobriety tests and a roadside breath test. They present these options with such authority that you may participate, and when the breath-testing machine indicates that your blood alcohol concentration meets or exceeds the legal limit of 0.08 here in Texas, the officer places you under arrest.

You may feel as though, since the breath test indicated illegal impairment, that the officer has you "dead to rights." Don't make that mistake. Roadside breath testing machines are notoriously inaccurate -- so much so that the results are often not admissible in court.

How can you draft a parenting plan that will work long-term?

One of the most important things that parents want to do after divorce is protect the interests of their children. As a parent, you understand how critical it is to provide as much continuity of lifestyle as possible and reduce the emotional strain they experience during and after divorce. The end of a marriage is difficult, but there are steps you can take to make things easier for the youngest members of your family.

In your effort to provide your kids with a stable and secure environment, one of the things you can do is craft a thoughtful and sustainable parenting plan. This will allow your child to have peace of mind and regular access to both parents. These are two things that are greatly beneficial for kids after their parents divorce. 

How do felony convictions affect non-citizens?

Coming to Texas from another country may have been a goal of yours since you were a child. You may have believed that coming to the United States would allow you to build a better life, and for a time, you may have found that life. Now, you face a difficult situation because authorities have charged you with a crime.

Along with worrying about your criminal case, you likely also have concerns about how the charges and a possible conviction will affect your immigration status. If the crime of which authorities have accused you falls into the category of a felony, you face a serious predicament.

Questions to ask before passing another vehicle

Driving on Texas roadways can provide a sense of freedom (as long as there isn't too much traffic). On a nice day, going for a drive can be a relaxing or energizing experience, especially for individuals like you who enjoy motorcycle riding.

Of course, you understand that safety is of the utmost importance when you are on the road because a single mishap could potentially leave you with serious or fatal injuries. As a result, you do your best to adhere to the law and make sure that any driving maneuver you carry out is with focus and care.

How could you defend against Texas drug possession charges?

Though federal law applies in many cases relating to drug-related activities, each state has specific laws as well. Because these laws, charges and potential punishments differ from area to area, it is important that anyone accused of a crime gains information on how state-specific courts will handle a drug-related case.

If you face charges for drug possession in Texas, you face a serious predicament. Overall, this state has some of the more severe consequences for drug possession convictions. Therefore, you will certainly want to take the time to find the best defense route for your particular case.

Certain factors can make a DWI more severe

You may be among the few who still believe driving after you have been drinking is no big deal. Most states impose a legal limit of .08 percent blood alcohol concentration, but the fact that some states are dropping that level indicates how seriously lawmakers take DWI. While you may not go to jail, in Texas, the consequences for even a first-offense DWI can include, among other things, substantial fines and loss of your license, which makes it difficult to get to work and complete other important tasks.

There may be factors that can increase the severity of the penalties you face after a DWI arrest. If your situation includes any of these aggravating factors, you may find yourself facing much more than a traffic ticket or a misdemeanor offense. In fact, you may face criminal charges that could derail the rest of your life.

How to avoid problems in a post-divorce co-parenting situation

Not every marriage lasts a lifetime. While the overall divorce rate in Texas and across the country has reportedly been declining in recent years, it doesn't guarantee any married couple that their particular relationship will stand the test of time. You may be one of hundreds of other couples who are preparing to end a marriage as a new year unfolds. If so, your children are no doubt your highest priority regarding what you should or should not do during proceedings and once the court finalizes your divorce.

There is definitely no shortage of post-divorce nightmarish stories regarding co-parenting. It's also true that you can't foolproof your interactions with your ex so that you can be certain you will never encounter challenges in your co-parenting lifestyle. However, you can keep several tips in mind to make things go as smoothly as possible. First, know where to seek support if a problem arises.

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