May 29, 2013

Video: What to Ask When Hiring an Attorney

written by Lane Fitzgerald

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Video Transcript

 

Title Slide: What to Look for When Hiring an Attorney

 

Q1: What questions would you ask if you were looking to hire an attorney?

 

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Bankruptcy Law, Criminal Defense, Blog, Family Law

May 22, 2013

How To Protect Your Privacy In A Public World – Part II: Trash (continued)

written by Lane Fitzgerald

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Criminal Defense, Blog

May 10, 2013

How To Protect Your Privacy In A Public World - Part 1: Trash

written by Lane Fitzgerald

To kick off a series devoted to the broad topic of privacy protection in an increasingly public world, we’ll first examine a number of ways to keep sensitive information guarded against unwanted intrusion. Garbage protection is a privacy issue often overlooked by many. Because of this, law enforcement routinely utilizes it as a method for collecting sensitive information regarding all sorts of legal, financial, or communicative data.

 

The public perception of the practice has been defined through dramatizations in television shows and movies leading many to believe it’s an action taken only by federal investigators involved in high profile legal cases. Others equate their garbage as personal property and thus assume the Fourth Amendment protects its contents.

 

This perception could not be further from the truth when we consider the 1988 Supreme Court ruling in California v. Greenwood, which stripped garbage of any constitutional protection. In essence, the court believed that by submitting waste items for collection, you have relinquished ownership of it.

 

Although privacy laws protect us from illegal searches ofour homes and the property within them, garbage is not included. The fine line which determines legality of garbage searches involves primarily the placement of one’s garbage at a given time.

 

If it’s left in your garage for example, it is within your house and is therefore still private property. However, by taking it to the street curb for collection, you effectively redefine its contents as public property and forfeit any legal protection you possessed in the past.

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Criminal Defense, Blog

May 01, 2013

Video: How Filing For Bankruptcy Will Affect You

written by Lane Fitzgerald

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Bankruptcy Law