east-los-angeles-bail-bonds

Leaving Kids in Hot Cars in California

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Kids and hot cars are never a good combination. Everyone knows that, yet there is still an average of 38 children who die each year after they’re locked into a hot car.

In all fairness, nearly all of these cases are an accident. The child is strapped into their car seat in the back of the vehicle and the driver simply forgets that they’re there until it’s too late. There are even situations when the parent accidentally locked the car keys in the vehicle with the child.

While accidents do happen, children overheating in the car something everyone would like to forget. If you’re traveling with a small child who can’t possibly let themselves out of the car, you need to figure out what steps you can take to make sure they aren’t accidentally forgotten. The hotter it gets, the more you’re going to have to worry.

One of the things that might help you remember that your child is in the backseat of your car is understanding that it’s illegal to leave your child there. California passed Kaitlyn’s Law in 2001. The law was created in memory of Kaitlyn Russel, who was only six months old when she died after her babysitter forgot her in a hot car for over two hours.

Kaitlyn’s Law not only makes it illegal to leave an infant in the car, but it also makes it illegal to leave an infant in the care of anyone who isn’t at least 12 years old if the vehicle is running or there are keys in the ignition and if there are unsafe conditions, such as overheating.

Kaitlyn’s Law makes it illegal to leave your unsupervised infant in the car period. So even if there is no danger of them overheating, you still have to bring them into the store or appointment with you.

Leaving a child under the age of six in a vehicle when they have no supervision can result in a $100 fine. It’s not unusual for the judge to waive the fine after you’ve completed a community education program.

In many cases, leaving a young, unsupervised child in the car, especially on a hot day, will result in you being charged with child endangerment. It is one of California’s wobbler offenses. In felony cases, you could face up to six years in prison. In misdemeanor situations, you could be sentenced to a year in county jail. In both situations, the Child Welfare Service will likely become involved and decide if you should retain custody of your child.


lynwood-bail-bonds

Can You Get Into Trouble for Using a Computer That Doesn’t Belong to You?

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We’ve all done it from time to time. Grabbed a friend or family member’s laptop to check our email or update our social media accounts. Most of us ask for permission first. But what if you don’t ask for permission? What happens if you simply boot up someone else’s computer and start using it.

While each situation is different, in legal terms, if you use someone’s computer without getting their permission first, you can be charged with a crime. You’d be charged with violating Penal Code 502 PC. This law states that:

“It is the intent of the Legislature in enacting this section to expand the degree of protection afforded to individuals, businesses, and governmental agencies from tampering, interference, damage, and unauthorized access to lawfully created computer data and computer systems. The Legislature finds and declares that the proliferation of computer technology has resulted in a concomitant proliferation of computer crime and other forms of unauthorized access to computers, computer systems, and computer data.

The Legislature further finds and declares that protection of the integrity of all types and forms of lawfully created computers, computer systems, and computer data is vital to the protection of the privacy of individuals as well as to the well-being of financial institutions, business concerns, governmental agencies, and others within this state that lawfully utilize those computers, computer systems, and data.”

This means that not only are you not allowed to boot up another person’s computer without their permission, you’re also not allowed to use their computer network or any of their software. You should also be aware that in most situations using another person’s cell phone without their permission would also be covered by the same law.

Most of California’s unauthorized use of a computer cases involve additional charges which frequently include fraud, identity theft, and trespassing.

At this point, unauthorized computer access is one of California’s wobbler laws. The exact circumstances of the situation determine if you face misdemeanor or felony charges.

If you are convicted of misdemeanor unauthorized computer use, the maximum sentence is twelve months in county jail and a fine that doesn’t exceed $5,000. Felony convictions can include a three-year stint in state prison and as much as $10,000. Probation is an option in both felony and misdemeanor cases.

While there are defenses you can use in an unauthorized use of a computer case, putting one together isn’t easy. In order to win, you’ll have to prove that you were actually given permission or that you didn’t realize it wasn’t your computer or cell phone.

The best way to avoid an unauthorized use of computer charge is trying to use your own electronics’ as much as possible.


Battery-charges-in-california

Understanding Battery in California

Battery-charges-in-california

Assault charges can be confusing, mostly because the law has so many nuances and different stages of things. The simplest way to look at things is to understand that any assault and battery charge involves someone getting into an altercation with another person.

California’s Penal Code sections 240 and 242 deals with assault and battery. The law defines battery \ and battery as, “any willful and unlawful use of force or violence upon the person of another.”

Don’t assume that simply because the person that you allegedly assaulted wasn’t hurt that the charges will simply go away. The way the law is written, simply grabbing another person’s shirt without their consent can be grounds to file assault and battery charges against you.

Even though assault and battery charges often seem like the same thing. In California, you could potentially be charged with just assault or just battery. The reason for this is because California lawmakers consider assault as an attempt to use physical force to threaten/harm whereas battery happens when you carry through with the threat and genuinely harm the other person.

If convicted of misdemeanor battery, the maximum sentence you’d receive is misdemeanor probation, up to six months in jail, and a $1,000 fine.

If the battery case involves a police officer, a guilty conviction could result in twice as severe consequences.


California-ride-share-laws

California Laws Ride Share Drivers Need to Understand

California-ride-share-laws

Rideshare programs like Uber and Lyft are a great way for some people to supplement their income. The programs are designed so that you get to choose your hours. In some cities, people have found that they were able to live a respectful living as a rideshare driver.

The problem some people encounter is that they aren’t properly prepared for the reality of becoming part of a rideshare program. There are some legal issues you should review before you pick up your first customer.

As rideshare programs gained popularity, California lawmakers realized that they needed to step in and start regulating the practice. This led to the creation of several state laws. It’s important to understand that these state laws pertain to anyone who is part of a rideshare program, it doesn’t matter if you’re a full-time driver or if you’re picking up your first passenger.

California state laws rideshare drivers must familiarize themselves with include:

  • A sticker that identifies you as a rideshare driver has to be prominently displayed on your vehicle. One sticker on the windshield, one on the rear window.
  • You must consent to an annual background check
  • The vehicle you use for rideshares must be inspected every 12 months or every 50,000 miles
  • You must pick up and transport customers who have service dogs
  • Vehicles used for rideshares must adhere to California’s current climate emission levels

Rideshare drivers are impacted by Assembly Bill NO. 5 which went into law on January 1, 2020. The law officially changed your status from that of a freelance contractor who simply provided work for Uber or Lyft to that of an employee.

Issues concerning Assembly Bill NO. 5 resulted in a case appearing in the California Superior Court where a judge ruled that both Uber and Lyft were legally responsible for paying drivers a mandated benefit, over time, business-expenses, and minimum wage.

Personal safety and liability issues have been raised by both drivers and passengers. At this point, there aren’t any laws that require rideshare drivers to install a dashboard camera in their vehicle, which would prevent false claims from being filed against drivers, but it is still a good idea.

The most important thing to remember is that you will have to claim any money you make as a rideshare driver and pay taxes on it. Get into the habit of keeping detailed rideshare financial records so that if you’re ever audited, you won’t have to worry about getting a bill for back taxes and unclaimed income from the IRS.


public decency laws

Avoid Inappropriate Public Display Of Affection This Valentines Day

public decency laws

One of the great things about Valentine’s Day is it provides you with an opportunity to look at your current relationship. Many people use the holiday as an excuse to try to inject some added spice into a relationship that has fallen into a comfortable rut. For some couples, this involves experimenting with public sex.

Here’s the thing about public sex. It can be exciting. It can make your relationship feel new and risky (in a fun way.) A little round of public Valentine’s Day sex is just the kind of thing you and your partner will reminisce about for years.

In books and movies, public sex is always hot and romantic. If the couple gets caught, they’re generally either embarrassed or laugh it off. Unfortunately, we don’t live in a romance novel. Here in the real world, a round of public Valentine’s Day sex (or public sex on any other day) can get you tossed in jail.

The issue of public sex is addressed in California’s Penal Code 647. The code clearly states that “An individual who solicits anyone to engage in or who engages in lewd or dissolute conduct in any public place or in any place open to the public or exposed to public view,” violates the law.

In California, you can’t have sex in any public area, or even on private property if there is a reasonable chance of innocent passersby viewing you.

If you’re found guilty of Valentine’s Day public sex, you’ll be convicted of lewd or dissolute conduct. It’s a misdemeanor.

The sentence can include:

  • Six months in county jail
  • A fine of up to $1,000

The one good thing is that as long as the charges don’t include indecent exposure, you won’t have to register as a sex offender.

A possible defense to a Valentine’s Day public sex charge is that you had reasonable expectations that no one would see you.


Consequences of brake checking

The Ins and Outs of Brake Checking in California

Consequences of brake checking

It has happened to all of us. You’re driving along at what you think is a perfectly acceptable speed when you notice a car behind you. Under most circumstances, the other car wouldn’t bother you, but this driver has decided you’re not going fast enough so they proceed to get as close to your bumper as they possibly can with the hopes that it will encourage you to step on the gas.

Some of us can ignore this behavior. Other drivers will speed up. Then there are those of us who decide this is the perfect time for a brake check.

What is a Brake Check?

A brake check is stepping on your brakes, hard, for no reason other than to startle the driver behind you into backing off.

Are Brake Checks Legal?

While the idea of brake checking the driver behind you seems appealing, you should stop and consider the consequences before you do so. California’s highway patrol is quick to point out that drivers who brake check are quite possibly breaking vehicle code 2209. That means you could be the person who gets the ticket.

The problem with brake checking is that most of these instances tend to involve two aggressive drivers. The driver in the lead is irritated that they’re being pushed. The driver that’s tailgating is irritated that they’re not traveling faster. Too often what starts off as tailgating and brake checking leads to a nasty road rage incident.

How you should Respond if Someone is Tailgating you

Rather than brake checking the driver who is tailgating you, you should employ one of two methods designed to get them off your bumper.

The first is to simply ignore them. If they don’t want to pass, simply keep driving until they finally give in and either slow down or work their way around you. If you decide to do this, don’t slow down, which the other driver could perceive as an aggressive move.

The second thing you can do is pull over and let the other driver go around you. Only do this when you’re in a location where you can safely do so.

If the situation doesn’t get better or you feel that the other driver poses a threat, you can call the police and report the situation. Make sure you give them your location, the direction your traveling, and a description of the car that’s tailgating you.


landlord rights in california

What Are Your Rights When a Tenant Will Not Move Out of Your Home?

landlord rights in california

Owning a rental property is a great opportunity to earn extra money while also helping resolve a small portion of California’s rental housing crisis.

While there are many good things that go along with owning a rental property there are also some downsides. One such drawback is when you have a tenant who simply refuses to move out of your home.

The good news is that there are some things you can do.

California law states that you have a right to tell your tenant that they’re evicted when they’ve:

  • Failed to pay their rent
  • When they do something that blatantly breaks the rental contract, such as having a dog in a no-pets property
  • The tenant has done so much damage to the property that it’s lowered the overall property value
  • The tenant is on the property when they break the law
  • The neighborhood has repeatedly reported that the tenant is a nuisance

You can also evict a California tenant when they fail to move out after the lease agreement has expired.

California doesn’t allow you to simply tell your tenant that they’re evicted and need to vacate the premises. There’s a legal process you must go through.

The first step involves sending a formal lease termination notice to the tenant. It’s in your best interest to send this notice via registered mail. One exception to the lease termination notice is in Epp California where landlords are allowed to send a simple 60-day notice instead.

Before you can file for an eviction, you must provide the tenant with a minimum of three days to either get caught up on repairs or deal with whatever contact violation led to the eviction notice. Just because three-days have passed doesn’t mean you can change the locks. Now it’s time to file get the court system involved. The fact your tenant didn’t respond to the eviction notice indicates that they want to fight the situation.

The tenant has the right to remain on the property until the court says they have to move out.

As the landlord, you’ll be pleased to know that most tenants don’t want to get the court involved. Most prefer to leave your property quietly because they don’t want an eviction on their record. That kind of black mark makes it nearly impossible for them to find a nice to rent in the future.

Just because your tenant has moved off your property, it doesn’t mean you’re done with them. They will want their security deposit back. You have 21 days to go through the property and make a note of any damage they left behind. At this point, you have to either refund the security deposit or explain why they won’t get it. If you’re not returning the full security deposit you have to provide your former tenant with a written explanation. The explanation should include an itemized list of deductions that make it clear that the repairs needed match or exceed the security deposit.


drunk driving in california

What happens to the passengers of a suspected DUI driver?

drunk driving in california

The law is clear. If your blood alcohol level is 0.08% or higher and you’re pulled over, you’ll be charged with a DUI. What isn’t clear is what happens if you’re the drunk passenger in a vehicle that’s being operated by a drunk driver.

The good news is that you can’t be charged with a DUI. That particular law only impacts people who are physically operating the vehicle at the time.

That doesn’t mean you’re completely off the hook. It’s entirely likely that the police officer will consider other things they can charge you. It’s not uncommon for drunken passengers to be charged with public drunkenness, underage drinking, resisting arrest, disturbing the peace, etc. In many cases, the exact charges you face will be determined by how badly you behaved when the car you were in was pulled over. If you sit quietly, do everything the officer asks, and find a sober driver to give you a lift home, it’s likely the officer will let you go.

What if You Caused the Accident

There have been cases when a passenger was charged with a DUI. Some of these cases involve a drunk driver, but there have been some where the driver was sober and was helping transport a drunk passenger. Most of these situations involved the passenger grabbing the steering wheel and yanking the car off course. Since you were behaving as the operator at that moment, you can be charged with a DUI.

Civil Liability

Things can take a different turn if the officer suspects that you knew the driver was drunk. It hasn’t happened in California yet, but some states have gone so far as to create DUI by consent laws that means anyone who knew the driver was drunk and failed to stop them from getting behind the wheel faces serious criminal charges.

In California, knowingly allowing someone to get behind the wheel even though you knew they were drunk creates the perfect situation for anyone who was hurt by the drunk driver to file a civil lawsuit against you. In many cases, this type of lawsuit favors the plaintiff, meaning you could lose everything. Not only could the victims of the drunk driving accident file civil charges against you, if your drunk driving friend is hurt or killed in the accident, their family might also name you in a lawsuit.

If you are unable to convince a drunk friend to let you drive them home, it’s in your best interest to contact the police and alert them to the situation. By letting everyone know there is a problem, you create proof that you did everything in your power to stop them from driving which makes it difficult for anyone to mount a civil case against you.


can employers force you to get tested

Can Employers Force you to Submit to a Covid-19 Test?

can employers force you to get tested

If you’re confused about what your employer can and can’t require of you during this pandemic, you’re not alone. Every other day it seems like some new rules and requirements and expectations seem to intrude on our rights. In many cases, getting a straight answer feels impossible.

Finding out if you have to submit for a Covid-19 test each time you go to work is a perfect example of how many people don’t know what they can and can’t fight. Some lawyers freely admit that they’re not sure how legal this topic is. For a long time, it was common knowledge that employers couldn’t legally require employees to undergo any medical examination that didn’t directly impact their work. COVID-19 has changed things.

Based on what the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission has stated, it’s likely that you do have to adhere to your employer’s wishes and be screened for COVID-19. The catch is that when your employer requires that you get the test, they have to do so in a way that stays in line with the Americans with Disabilities Act.

Your employer isn’t allowed to simply declare that you take a COVID-19 test. There are some strict rules that they have to follow. These rules include:

  • Adhering to both federal and California confidentiality laws
  • Stick to reliable tests
  • Understand the possibility of false/positive and false/negative tests and have a plan of action in place

What happens if the test comes back positive? You’ll have to socially distance which means you can no longer go to work. If working from home isn’t an option, how are you supposed to pay your bills for the two or more weeks you aren’t working?

The good news is that the government has taken the steps needed to make sure you don’t lose your home during this period. If you have to take sick leave because you’ve tested positive for COVID-19, the Families First Coronavirus Response Act (FFCRA or Act) stipulates that provided you meet certain criteria, your employer must pay you, provided you’ve tested positive. In many cases, your employer only has to pay for 2 weeks of sick leave. If you have worked for your current employer for at least 30 days and have a genuine inability to work due to caring for a child during the pandemic, you’re entitled to a 10-week leave of absence at 2/3s of your regular salary.

Some employers who employ less than 50 employees are exempt from the required sick pay for COVID-19 victims.

If you start feeling unwell or were exposed to COVID-19 it’s in your best interest to sit down with your employer and try to find a solution that keeps everyone safe.


pico rivera bail bonds

What Happened to Proposition 25?

pico rivera bail bonds

In the weeks leading up to the November election, Proposition 25 was a hot topic. It was designed to completely change the way California’s bail bond process worked.

In the chaos that followed the November 3 elections, many of us got so caught up in the presidential election, we forgot about some of the other things that appeared on the ballot. Now that things have calmed down, many people have started to ask about Proposition 25.

The simple answer is that it failed. While some voters who would like to see some additional bail reform, the majority have decided that they are happy with the way things are.

The way things stand, if you’re charged with a crime, there are two ways you can be released from jail. The first is that the court can decide to release you on your own recognizance, which basically means you sign a piece of paper that serves as a promise to appear for all of your court dates.

The second is bail. If the court says you have to pay bail, you can either pay in cash and bail yourself out, or you can contact Lynwood Bail Bonds for help. If you pass our approval process, we’ll cover the cost of your bail in exchange for a 10% fee.

Why you Should choose Lynwood Bail Bonds

There are several reasons you should consider Lynwood Bail Bonds when you need help covering bail. These reasons include:

  • We have a long, positive history in the area
  • We’re a family owned bail bonds business that genuinely cares for our clients
  • We know how to get you released from jail as quickly as possible

We have been in the business long enough to know that each client is unique. That’s why we’ve made it a priority to create a list of services that can be customized to meet each client’s special needs.

The services you’ll enjoy when you turn to Lynwood Bail Bonds include:

  • A 20% discount for many clients
  • No collateral for working signers
  • Zero Interest Payments
  • Affordable payment plans
  • 24/7 availability
  • Online consultations
  • Phone consultations
  • And more!

The sooner you contact us, the sooner we can go through the process that will ultimately get you released from jail and back with your family. Every single consultation is free of both monetarily and of obligation. Taking advantage of our consultations is a great way to both learn about the bail bonds process and to decide if Lynwood Bail Bonds is the company you should align yourself with.

To learn more, call (323)357-0575 or click Chat With Us now.