What’s In Your Kid’s Halloween Candy?

What’s In Your Kid’s Halloween Candy?

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very year, as Halloween rolls around, people begin seeing articles about how they can keep their kids safe during the holiday. One of the big topics is being sure to check kids’ Halloween candies for any tampering before allowing them to eat it. Unfortunately, there are people out there who think it’s fun or funny to harm people by messing with their food.

The first step to making sure your child is safe from tampered Halloween candy is to make sure that they don’t eat any of it while they are out trick or treating. Do not let them eat any of the candies until you have been able to examine it under good lighting. Check for damaged wrappers, candy that smells funny, homemade sweets from strangers, or any candy or sweets not in their original packaging.

If a piece of candy doesn’t seem right to you, throw it out. In this instance, it is better to be safe than sorry, especially when it comes to your child’s safety. If you do find any candy that has been clearly tampered with, such as having needles, razors, or glass shards in it, report it right away to the local authorities.

As uncommon as tampering with candy may be, this kind of thing does happen. Recently Australia has been dealing with people putting sewing needles into strawberries. So, check your kids Halloween candy this year just to be safe.

 

Be Responsible This Halloween

Be Responsible This Halloween

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t’s that time of the year again, and people are busily preparing for what custumes to wear this Halloween. Kids are plotting out the best route to get them as much candy as possible, while adults are figuring out which party to go to. However, something else adults should be considering, is who will be driving to the party.

If a person plans on drinking at any Halloween parties, then they need to have a designated driver (DD) or use a ride share service such as Lyft, Uber or even just a taxi. They have to do this because drinking and driving is never a good idea on any day of the year. On Halloween, it is an even worse idea.

On Halloween, kids are out and about trick or treating. This usually continues after the sun goes down. This means that the roads are often dark and lined with kids. This increases the chances of a drunk driver causing a horrible accident. This is why it is so important for a person to drink responsibly.

The likelihood of people getting behind the wheel after drinking at a party on Halloween is why there will also be an increase of DUI checkpoints that night. Law enforcement officers know that there will be more drinking on Halloween night. In order to reduce the chances of any accidents occurring, they will setup numerous checkpoints to catch as many drunk drivers as possible.

If you plan on having a few drinks this Halloween, be sure to do so responsibly.

Designate a friend or a family member to drive, or get a Lyft, Uber, or a taxi cab to get to your destination safe and sound. In today’s world, there is no need to get behind the wheel of a car while drunk. Especially not this Halloween.

 

Protecting Your Property From Creditors In California

Protecting Your Property From Creditors In California

Just because you owe a debt, it doesn’t mean you should sacrifice your home. To protect homeowners, California legislatures created a series of California homestead real estate laws that are specifically designed to ensure that non-consensual creditors drive you away from your home, or that they take the money you made from selling a piece of property. It is worth noting that these laws only protect your home from non-consensual creditors, but not voluntary liens placed against your property.

Examples of voluntary liens include:

  • Mechanic’s liens
  • Mortgages
  • Federal tax liens
  • Judgement liens (child support, spousal support)
  • Deed of trust

Chapter Seven Bankruptcy

The best way to help erase your debt load and still maintain ownership of your home is filing for Chapter 7 bankruptcy. Even though Chapter 7 bankruptcy does require that you liquidate nearly all of your assets, one of the things that remains yours during the bankruptcy process is the equity you have built as a home owner. This means that if you keep up on your mortgage payments and consistently pay federal and state property taxes, you will continue to have a place to live, and there is nothing your creditors can do about it.

Protection from Lawsuits

California is one of the few states that has passed legislation that prevents the sale of your primary residence in order to meet debts owed to creditors, a law that allows you to keep your residence even if you lose a large civil lawsuit. The exception is, lawsuits that deals with either child support or spousal support.

It is important to note, that only your primary residence is protected by California’s homestead laws. If you own a secondary residence, you could be ordered to give it up. This is going to be true for both rental and vacation properties.

If you’re worried about creditors coming after either a primary or secondary residence, one of the courses of action you can take is gifting it to another family member. Not only does this keep the property out of the creditors hands, but often reduces estate tax liability. The trick is to make sure you gift the property to a family member that doesn’t have issues with creditors and who is willing to let you continue living on the property.

 

Be Safe This Halloween

Be Safe This Halloween

There are certain holidays that just call for parties, and Halloween is one of those days. While kids are out trick-or-treating in search of candy, adults are out partying with friends. While there will still likely be some candy at these parties, most adults have upgraded to something different. Many adults will be consuming alcohol while having a good time.

Of course, there is nothing wrong with this, provided it is done responsibly, which is what most people do. However, there are still far too many people out there who will be consuming alcohol this year, and then getting behind the wheel of a vehicle. Due to this fact, don’t be surprised to see a rise in DUI checkpoints on Halloween.

Law enforcement officers will be doing everything in their power to keep everyone safe that night, which means trying to prevent as many drunk drivers as possible.

When a person drives drunk, their cognitive functions are drastically decreased, making them much more likely to get into a car accident. This is bad enough on any night of the year, but even worse on Halloween when kids are out roaming the streets.

If you plan on going to a party and having a few drinks this Halloween, be sure to do so responsibly. Assign someone as the designated driver (DD), or get a taxi, Uber, or Lyft. This way, you do not have to drive and risk your life, and the life of everyone else out on the road.

 

Taking The Perfect Selfie Can Be Dangerous

Taking The Perfect Selfie Can Be Dangerous

When people do something fun or amazing, they like to document it in some way. For most people in this day and age, that means taking the perfect selfie of the moment. For those unaware, a selfie is a picture that you take of yourself. For the most part, the action of taking a selfie is harmless. However, there are instance when it can become dangerous, or even deadly.

Posting a cool selfie on social media sites is a surefire way to get a lot of attention, which is why selfies are so popular. The problem is, some people don’t pay enough attention to their surrounding when taking the picture. People have fallen from cliffs or been attacked by wild animals while attempting to get the “perfect” shot.

Perhaps what is worse than simply not paying attention to their surroundings, are the people who perform dangerous stunts in order to gain more attention online. The Los Angeles Sheriff’s Department (LASD) reports that search and rescue teams performed over 680 rescue missions in 2017. Many of those missions were to rescue attempted daredevils who injured themselves performing a stunt in a remote area.

Taking a good selfie is nice, but it is not worth risking your life to gain a few additional likes on your social media. If you are going to be taking pictures, always be aware of your surroundings. Don’t walk to close to a cliff or wild animal, or else you could wind up in some serious trouble and in need of a rescue.

 

The Police Towed Your Ride, Now What?

The Police Towed Your Ride, Now What?

It doesn’t matter if your vehicle is towed after you’ve been pulled over and arrested for a bench warrant or because you left it parked too long in one place and someone reported it as an abandoned vehicle, learning that the police have towed your vehicle triggers a sinking feeling in the pit of your stomach. It’s worth noting that if a vehicle is parked on a street or public/business lot for more than a week without moving, the police consider it an abandoned vehicle and will tow it.

The fact that many police stations, especially in small towns, contacts a third-party towing service to move and store the car, makes getting your vehicle back even more complicated than if it was sent to a local garage.

Find Out Where Your Vehicle Is At

Finding out where your vehicle is shouldn’t be complicated. All it takes is a simple call to the nearest police station and they will provide you with the information you need. What they might not know is how much it’ll cost to free your vehicle. When you collect your car, be prepared to pay for towing fees and storage fees. The sooner you pick up the vehicle, the lower the storage fees.

Collecting Your Vehicle

You should be able to collect your car as soon as all the bills connected to the police towing have been paid. The only real exception is if the vehicle is being held as evidence of a crime, such as an accident, because drugs were found in it, or if the police believe it was used to commit a felony.

When you pick up your vehicle, make sure you have your driver’s license, current proof of insurance, and valid registration, or the vehicle won’t be released. If you no longer have a valid license, you will want to ask someone to go with you and drive the vehicle for you. In some cases, if the car isn’t properly plated or insured, arrangements can be made to have the vehicle towed to your home.

Once you have the vehicle back, you will want to avoid repeating whatever it was that lead to the car being towed in the first place.

If You Don’t Pick Up Your Car

The police will not hold onto your car forever. If a certain length of time passes and you haven’t made any attempt to get your car back, the police will auction it off. Once it’s been sold, there’s nothing you can do to get it back.

 

AMBER Alerts

AMBER Alerts

If you own a cell phone then it’s likely that you’ve heard the buzzer-like noise that blasts from the speakers at any given time of the day. Depending on the time of day, you may or may not be slightly irritated at the unannounced noise. However, this noise, part of the National AMBER Alert Program, could be a signal of life or death for an abducted child.

According to the National Center for Missing and Exploited Children, the America’s Missing: Broadcast Emergency Response Plan, also known as the AMBER Alert program, is a partnership between law enforcement agencies, broadcast agencies, and transportation agencies to activate an urgent notification for serious child-abduction situations.

The blaring noise that comes over your cell phone is part of the Emergency Alert System that broadcasts a description of the abducted child, who the suspected abductor is, and the vehicle used for the abduction. This is done in an effort to immediately notify the public or assist in the successful recovery of the child.

You receive these notifications on your phone as part of Wireless Emergency Alert program, when you are in the geographic location that the alert has been issued. Luckily, the alerts are sent through a special wireless carrier so you are not charged the receipt of these notifications.

After you are startled by one of these notifications, it can be very tempting to turn them off – don’t.

AMBER Alerts are effective.

Out of the 179 AMBER Alerts issued in 2016, 155 of the children were recovered and 43 of those recoveries were a direct result of the AMBER Alert being issued. That’s 43 children that were reunited with their families and will be able to grow up.

These alerts aren’t very common, California only issued 10 alerts in 2016. However, as we said before, these alerts could be the difference between life and death. If you’ve turned off these alerts on your phone, we suggest turning them back on. You could be the difference in saving a child’s life.

 

Legal Gambling Options In California

Legal Gambling Options In California

The office football pool and the friendly weekly game of poker you indulge in might not seem like a big deal to you, but if you’re caught, you could find yourself on the wrong side of California’s legal system.

While gambling is legal in the state, California lawmakers have created some specific rules limiting when and how you can gamble.

Casinos Owned by Native American Tribes are Legal

Like most states, the only casinos that are legally allowed to operate in California are Tribal Casinos that are connected to and managed by a Native American tribe. In most cases, these casinos are modeled after Las Vegas casinos, in addition to offering an assortment of gambling options, they frequently have restaurants, entertainment, and lodging available.

Horse Racing is Okay

One of the preferred forms of legal gambling allowed in California is betting on horses. Whether it is Thoroughbreds, Standardbreds, or Quarter Horse races, you can spend as much time placing bets as you would like. The only catch is that the races must be officially sanctioned. You are not legally allowed to bet on the barrel races during county fairs.

Horse racing is the only form of gambling in California where pari-mutuel betting is legal. If you decide to try your hand at pari-mutuel betting while at the races, be aware that both management fees and state taxes are deducted before you’re allowed to collect your winnings.

Card Clubs are Legal

According to the state law, the only type of casinos that can legally operate in California are those run by Native American tribes; however, there is one loophole – Card clubs. These clubs represent California’s oldest form of formal gambling. As of 2016, the state had issued 89 licenses even though only 76 belonged to active card clubs.

The California Gambling Control Act which was introduced and passed in 1998 makes these card clubs legal. To operate a Card Club, the management must:

  • Submit to a highly extensive background check
  • Obey all local ordinances

State law prohibits publicly owned corporations from becoming involved in card clubs.

Card Clubs operate by charging each player a fee before they start playing. Once the game gets started, the players bet against one another. The house doesn’t have a stake in the game.

California Loves the State Lottery

California lawmakers not only permit gambling via state sanctioned lotteries, they encourage it. The couple dollars you spend on lottery ticket is a huge money maker for the state. Both the MegaMillions and SuperLotto Plus are state lotteries.

Gambling for Charity

Charity organizations are allowed to host gambling functions in order to earn money for their cause. The trick is that they have to be a registered non-profit organization. For the longest time, the only game allowed during the events was bingo but in 2007, legislatures voted to increase the types of games charitable organizations were allowed to offer, which is why it’s not common to see poker, raffles, and a few other casino-style games being played at these events.

 

Consequence Of Driving With A Suspended License

Consequence Of Driving With A Suspended License

Having a driver’s license makes life considerably easier and in some parts of California, the ability to drive is a key component of survival since there’s no form of public transportation. However, there are times when the State of California can decide to suspend your license.

How a Driver’s License Becomes Suspended

It’s a easier to have your drivers license suspended than you might think. Things that can result in to the state revoking your driving privileges include:

  • Unpaid tickets.
  • Driving while under the influence.
  • Being declared physically or mentally incapable of driving.
  • Having too many points on your driving record.

California Vehicle Code 14601 VC not only deals with the various reasons why a license can be suspended, but also the consequences connected to continuing to drive despite the fact you’ve lost your license.

What Happens if You Continue to Drive

It’s easy to understand the urge to drive despite the fact that your license is suspended. No one is going to know as long as you don’t get pulled over and driving means you don’t have to walk or beg a friend for a ride.

The thing you have to remember is that if you are caught driving on a suspended license you’ll face severe consequences.

Penalties for Driving Without a License in California

  • First Offense: Imprisonment for between 5 days and 6 months; $300-$1000 fine.
  • Subsequent Offense: Imprisonment for between 10 days and 1 year; $500-$2000 fine.

Vehicle Code 14601 VC states that when you’re caught driving on a suspended license, the local prosecutor will charge you with a misdemeanor, a charge that can be a serious blow, especially if you’re trying to get a job or lease a new apartment.

The exact penalty connected to your decision to drive while your license is suspended depends on a few different variables, including:

  • Why your license was suspended in the first place.
  • How many times you’ve been caught driving on a suspended license.
  • The traffic infraction that led to you being pulled over and the officer discovering the status of your license.

It’s not uncommon for a person who has been caught driving on a suspended license to spend time in the county jail and to also be issued some heavy fines.

In addition to facing legal problems when you’re caught driving on a suspended license, you’ll also have a difficult time registering your vehicle (which increases the odds of you getting pulled over and caught) and insuring your vehicle. The lack of insurance and license means that you’ll be on the wrong side of a lawsuit should you cause an accident.

 

Think Twice Before Making A Prank Call

Think Twice Before Making A Prank Call

When you’re the person making prank calls, it is a lot of fun, but you should know that each time you make one of those calls, you’re breaking California’s Penal Code 653m PC. This code also includes prank text messages and emails.

The problem with prank calls is that while you’re having a great time, the person on the other end isn’t. Having to deal with threatening and/or annoying calls is very stressful which is why the lawmakers got into the action. Don’t assume that your prank calls will simply get you a slap on the wrist. If the prosecutor decides to pursue the case and a jury finds you guilty, you’ll go through life with a misdemeanor on your record and could spend time in a county jail cell.

What Types of Call Violate Penal Code 653m PC

Most people assume that the only calls that will get them in trouble are ones that openly threaten the person on the other side of the message/call. The truth is that when you read Penal Code 653m PC, you’ll discover that California’s lawmakers consider repetitive and flat out annoying calls to also be in violation of the law.

The good news is that the most prosecutors aren’t looking for teenagers who randomly call people and ask them a joke. In most counties, Penal Code 653m PC is used mainly to prosecute harassing phone calls/messages that are involved with cases that include other issues such as stalking and domestic violence. The calls/messages that get the most attention from the authorities are the ones that are openly threatening and where obscene language is used.

One of the things that has gotten some people in trouble with the law is that they made a prank call but failed to connect with anyone on the other end, only to have the person return the call. If you start using obscene language at this point, the cops could knock on your door.

The Problem with Penal Code 653m PC

While most law officials feel that Penal Code 653m PC is a great idea, there are quite a few problems connected to it, which is bad news for prosecutors but good news for those charged with violating the law. The biggest problem is that the type of obscene language is so bad it violates Penal Code 653m PC. This gives the defense a good argument they can use to get the charges dismissed.

If found guilty, you could be required to pay a $1,000 fine and sentenced to 6 months in county jail.