Archive for the ‘Law’ Category
How old do you have to be to get married?
When I was growing up in the 80s, there was a defined legal minimum age required before a couple could be legally married. I remember this because my uncle was in a long relationship with a woman and I remember him talking about wanting to be married and that since they were both over the age of 16. That seemed very old to me then — I was around 8– but come to find out that old law has changed dramatically.
Depending on where you live, the legal age of consent (the age at which a person can legally consent to sexual activity) and the minimum age required for marriage are different. In almost every state, the legal age of consent is actually lower than the legal age required to be married. For example, in New Mexico the legal age of consent is 16 but the minimum age for marriage is 18. Another extreme example of a great difference between age of consent and marriage age is Mississippi, where the age of consent is 16 but both members of a couple must be 21 years old to marry.
Pregnancy and Marriage
In every state in America, a pregnancy can be grounds for marriage as long as the couple gets court approval–this is handy because court approval requires a medical test to prove a woman is pregnant. This little clause seems antiquated–I know plenty of unwed couples doing a good job of raising a baby together, but for some reason we here in America want to see all people who have babies together become married.
State-by-State Marriage Laws
The age is 18 unless the following applies — if either person is under 18, they will need a certified copy of both party’s birth certificates. Both parents must be present and carrying identification. If one or both parents are deceased, proper evidence of such must be provided. Individuals under the age of 14 may not marry under any circumstance.
The age is 18 unless the following applies — if either person is under 18, they will need a certified copy of both party’s birth certificates. Both parents must be present and carrying identification.
The age is 18, however you can marry at age 16 is you have the notarized consent of your parents or legal guardian. If you are under 16, you must have the notarized consent of your parents or legal guardian as well as a court order.
The age is 18, however those under 18 can be married if both sets of paretns consent.
The age is 18, but if either the bride or groom is under 18, at least one of the minor’s parents must appear with the couple. Certified copies of birth certificates are required. The couple must also schedule an appointment with a counselor and then appear before a superior court judge for approval
You can be married at 16, but you will need the written consent of both parents or simply seek judicial approval, usually granted for pregnancy.
The legal age is 16 with written parental consent, but if either member of the couple is under the age of sixteen, they can still be married if they have the written consent of the judge for the district where the minor resides. Written parental consent is needed if under 18 years of age.
The age of marriage is 18, but signed parental consent forms will allow you to marry between the age of 16 and 18.
The age of marriage with no restriction is 18, however If a person is between the age of 16 and 18, a marriage license can be obtained with parental consent. Interestingly enough, all you have to do to get a marriage license when pregnant (at any age) is to swear that they are pregnant before a judge and produce a written statement from a doctor.
If you are between the ages of 16 and 18, you can apply for a marriage license if you go to the court with both parents who have provided written consent. If the bride is pregnant, no parental consent is required if you submit a statement from a licensed physician certifying the pregnancy.
The age is 18 unless the following applies — if either person is under 18, they will need a certified copy of both party’s birth certificates. Both parents must be present and carrying identification.
The age is 18 unless the following applies — if either person is under 18, they will need a certified copy of both party’s birth certificates. Both parents must be present and carrying identification. You must be accompanied by one of your parents or your legal guardian and have written parental consent on the Affidavit of Consent to Marriage of Minor. If you are under 16 years of age, you will also need a court order.
If you are 16 or 17 years of age, you will have to provide a copy of your birth certificate along with some other sort of identification showing your date of birth. You will also need to have the sworn consent from each parent, each legal guardian or a judge – in person – before the county clerk at the time of application. If your parent is deceased, you will need to show a death certificate or proof of guardianship, or a court order waiving consent. A legal guardian will also need to show a certified copy of the guardianship papers. If you are under 16 years of age, you cannot get married.
A certified copy of your birth certificate is required. If you are 17 years old you must apply for the license with both parents (or the person with legal custody). They will need to sign the consent portion of the application. If you are 16 or 15 years old, you must petition the Circuit Court via a “Permission to Marry” form.
Under 18 applicants (16 or 17 years of age) need to have parental consent.
The age of marriage is 18, but any applicant for a marriage license who is under the age of 18 must have either notarized written consent of all living parents or notarized written consent of one parent or legal guardian and consent of a district court judge.
The age is 18 or above. If a person is between the ages of 16 and 18, he or she must have the consent of parents or legal guardians.
The age of marriage is 18, but if either member of the marraige is between the ages of 16 and 18, the presence and signatures of both parents are required. If either party is under the age of 16, a court order is required in order to obtain a license.
Applicants must be over 18 years old. Maine has rather strict laws — there is no case in which a marriage license can be handed out under the age of 16.
Parental consent is needed if under 18 years of age. If you are between 16-18 years of age, one of your parents or guardian must be with you and provide written consent. If you are under 16 years of age, you will need both the written consent of your custodial parent or guardian and the written approval of a judge of the Orphans’ Court Division of the Court of Common Pleas. If you are under 18, pregnant or have a child, and show a certificate from a licensed physician stating you are pregnant or have had a child, the parental consent requirement may be waived.
Age 18 years or older. A birth certificate may be required to show proof of age. If either party is under 18, a court order from a probate or district court where the minor resides must be obtained before the marriage intentions can be filed.
Applicants 16 years of age may marry with parental or legal guardian written consent. Applicants under the age of 15 with parental consent and probate court permission. ‘Marriage of a Minor’: The legal marriage of a minor “shall release such minor from parental control.”
Applicants between the ages of 15 and 18 must have the consent of a parent, guardian or the judge of juvenile court. Applicants younger than 15 need the written consent of a parent of guardian and the consent of a juvenile court judge.
Mississippi has the highest legal marriage age in the country — parental consent is needed if either member of the pair is under the age of 21. If parents or guardians do not give consent at time of application, they will be notified via certified mail for their later consent. The marriage application will be held for only three days to allow the parents to decide. Marriage licenses cannot be issued under any circumstance to males under the age of 17, or to females under the age of 15. If the clerk receives a signed authorization from either parent, the minimum age requirement can be completely waived.
A person under age 18 cannot marry without the consent of the custodial parent or guardian. Ç²A person under age 15 cannot marry without approval of a judge in the county where the marriage license is sought. The statute states that the judge should grant approval only upon a showing of “good cause” and that unusual conditions make the marriage “advisable.” Persons lacking mental capacity to consent to marriage cannot marry without court approval.
If you are 16 or 17 years old, you must have the consent of both parents unless only one parent has legal custody of you. Both of you, as a couple, will also have to attend at least two counseling sessions that are at least 10 days apart. This has to be done with a designated counselor who will then have to provide a letter that states the names of the couple, their ages, the dates of the counseling sessions, and what the counselor thinks about their possible marriage.
Under 19 — A notarized consent form must be signed by the person’s legal guardian giving consent to the marriage of the minor. Nebraska will not issue a marriage license if either applicant is under 17 years of age.
If you are 16 or 17 years old, you must have one parent or legal guardian present. A notarized written permission is also acceptable. It must be written in English and needs to state the name, birth date, age of the minor child, along with the relationship of the person giving consent. The notary must note that the parent or guardian personally appeared before or was subscribed and sworn to. If you are under 16, marriage can be authorized only by court order when the request has been filed by either parent or legal guardian.
A female between the age of 13 and 17 years and a male between the age of 14 and 17 years can be married only with the permission of their parent (guardian) and a waiver. A female below the age of 13 and a male below the age of 14 are not allowed to marry under any conditions. If both parties are nonresidents of NH and are below the age of 18 they cannot be married in NH under any conditions.
Applicants under 18 can marry if both parents consent to the marriage. The consent must be given under oath in front of two witnesses. Males: 16 or younger parties may marry with parental consent and/or permission of judge. Younger parties may obtain license in case of pregnancy or birth of child. Females: 16 or younger parties may marry with parental consent and/or permission of judge. Younger parties may obtain license in case of pregnancy or birth of child.
Parental consent is required if either party is between 16 and 18 years of age. If either member of the couple is 15 years of age, a court order is required. New Mexico has an odd system whereby there’s no waiting period for marriage, and licenses are issued and declared valid immediately and never expire.
If you are 16 or 17 years of age, you will need to have a completed parental consent form filled out by both parents. If you are either 14 or 15 years of age, you will need to show the written consent of both parents and a justice of the Supreme Court or a judge of the local Family Court. Applicants under 14 years of age cannot marry. Only one parent’s consent will be accepted if one parent is deceased or has been missing for over a year, or if one parent has full custody from a divorce proceeding. Your parents or guardians must give their consent in person before the town or city clerk or some other authorized official. If they are out of state, a notarized affidavit is acceptable but has to be accompanied by a certificate of authentication when the consent is filed in New York State.
Applicants 18 to 20 must present a certified copy of their birth certificate. Applicants 16 and 17 must present a consent form signed by the parent, individual, agency or institution having legal custody or serving as the legal guardian of the underage party. (birth certificate is also required). The consent form must be notarized. Applicants 14 and 15 must provide a certified copy of the court order authorizing the marriage. A certified copy of the birth certificate is also required. A marriage license may not be issued to applicants under 14 years of age.
If a person is between sixteen and eighteen years of age, a marriage license may not be issued without the consent of the parents or guardian. This requires a notarized statement.
If you are 18 to 21 years of age, you will need to show your birth certificate. Persons aged 16-17 must have consent to marry from parents or legal guardians and may have to contact the Probate Court. Additionally, the Judge may require the minors to state that they have received marriage counseling that is satisfactory to the court. Section 3101.05 also mentions how the court will deal with a pregnant minor.
If you are under 18, your parents must appear at the courthouse with you to sign a consent form. Minors must wait three days before the marriage license is valid.
Under 18: Anyone not yet 17 years of age cannot be legally married in the State of Oregon. A seventeen year old can be married if they have the parent’s or guardian’s consent (State Consent form needed).
If under 18 years of age applicants may marry with consent of a parent or guardian. Applicants must present Birth Certificate plus an additional $5.00. Okay, if under 16 years of age with the approval of a Judge of the Orphans Court, as well as parent or guardian.
Under 18: A Minor’s Permit to marry must be completed if a female applicant is 16 or 17 years of age. The permit must be signed and notarized in the presence of the City or Town Clerk or any clerk employed in that office. ²A female under age 16 and a male under age 18 cannot secure a marriage license in the State of Rhode Island without the approval of the Family Court.
If you are under 18, you will need a certified copy of your birth certificate and a notarized statement of parental consent. The minimum age for a female is 14 and it is 16 for a male.
Applicants 16 and 17 must have parental consent. South Dakota law does not permit marriage of those under 16.
The age is 18 without from a parent or your legal guardian. If under the age of 16, the law requires that the couple receives a court order before being allowed to marry.
If either party is under the age of 18, they must be accompanied by parents. If under the age of 16, Tennessee law requires that the couple receives a court order before being allowed to marry.
The law states that marriage at the age of 18 years and above does not require parental consent. For those aged 16-17, parental consent is necessary. For those 15 years old, the following requirements must be met: Parental consent must be obtained. Approval from Juvenile Court is necessary. The court must conclude that the marriage is voluntary and in the best interests of the minor.
If you are at least 16, but under 18, you will need the consent of a parent or guardian.
If either of you are under 18 years of age, you must have written, notarized consent from a parent or your legal guardian.
If under the age of 18, proof of age is required (birth certificate or driver’s license). Additionally, the parent or guardian must be present to sign the application form. If under 17, written permission from the family court must be obtained.
If either of you are under 18 years of age, you must have the consent (in person or written) of a parent or guardian. If written, the consent must be notarized. There may be special provisions for an underage bride who is pregnant.
If either the bride or groom is under 18, you must have written, notarized consent from his or her parents or guardian. There is a Consent form available to be signed by parents or guardian before a County Clerk.
Applicants must be at least 18 years old or with written parental consent. Applicants under 16 years of age only with court order.
A final note — most of these restrictions apply to people being married within the boundaries of that specific state. In almost all cases, it doesn’t matter what state you come from as long as you meet the requirements for the state in which you’re being married.
This post is part of a series of posts answering questions about how old you have to be to do certain things. Other posts in this series include:
- How Old Do You Have to Be to Babysit?
- How Old Do You Have to Be to Buy Condoms?
- How Old Do You Have to Be to Rent a Hotel Room?
- How Old Do You Have to Be to Get a Job?
You might also be interested in this site which is about how old do you have to be in general.
What Are DUI Checkpoints?
You may have seen them on the highways and byways of America especially during high-traffic times, late at night, or during the holidays. In general, DUI checkpoints are regular points along high-traffic roads that allow police and other peace officers to examine drivers to make sure they aren’t driving in an impaired state.
DUI checkpoints take many forms–some are simply patrol cars checking speed and safety, and pulling over drivers who appear to be impaired for a closer check. Other checkpoints are more invasive–all cars travelling along a certain stretch of road must pull over and pass inspection. The kind of checkpoint that you encounter has more to do with a state’s laws and attitudes toward DUI checkpoints than anything else.
38 states in America conduct DUI checkpoints, also known as sobriety checkpoints, as part of their state policy toward impaired and drunk driving. The other 12 states have found that laws exist preventing or challenging the legality of such checkpoints.
DUI Checkpoint Locations
The best way to find DUI checkpoint locations is to watch local news and read your local newspaper. Most places that setup DUI checkpoints are legally bound to announce the location in some form. Your municipal or state police department may even post these checkpoint locations on their website.
DUI Checkpoint Locators
Websites like Roadblock Registry allow you to search for posted roadblocks by state and sometimes by city. You can also use your own two eyes to spot roadblocks–if you see lots of flashing lights between 9 pm and 2 am, you can bet you’ve just found a DUI checkpoint.
DUI Checkpoint Apps
Three apps for smartphones, called Buzzed, Tipsy, and Checkpointer, allow people with smartphones to instantly access roadblock and DUI checkpoint registries. These apps run from totally free to $4.99, and the more expensive the app the larger the database and the more often the updates. These apps are currently legal, though there are legal challenges to their existence and availability to the public.
DUI Checkpoint Laws
Depending on the state you live in, you may or may not have to worry about DUI checkpoints. Some states have ruled that such checkpoints are illegal–other states have specific interpretations of the Constitution that make such checkpoints illegal. There appears to be a geographic component to the legality of DUI checkpoints, with states in the Deep South and around New England favoring DUI checkpoints, while states in the West and Midwest tend to declare them illegal.
Here is a breakdown of all fifty states, whether or not they conduct DUI checkpoints, and how often.
Alabama–DUI checkpoints are legal and are conducted throughout the year.
Alaska–DUI checkpoints are illegal because the state has no legal authority to run them.
Arizona–DUI checkpoints are conducted at least once per month.
Arkansas–DUI checkpoints are conducted weekly.
California–DUI checkpoints are conducted once or twice a month.
Colorado–DUI checkpoints are conducted once or twice a month.
Connecticut–DUI checkpoints are legal but are not conducted regularly.
Delaware–DUI checkpoints are legal and are conducted once a month between January and June and weekly from June through December.
D.C.– DUI checkpoints are conducted once or twice a month.
Florida–Florida is the DUI checkpoint capital of the world. DUI checkpoints are legal and are conducted 15-20 times monthly.
Georgia–DUI checkpoints are conducted weekly.
Hawaii–DUI checkpoints are conducted weekly.
Idaho–DUI checkpoints are illegal by state law.
Illinois–Illinois is almost as DUI checkpoint-crazy as Florida, conducting several hundred checkpoints randomly throughout the year.
Indiana–DUI checkpoints are legal and are conducted randomly.
Iowa–DUI checkpoints are illegal because of a state law that authorizes roadblocks but does not specifically authorize sobriety checkpoints.
Kansas–DUI checkpoints are legal and are conducted once or twice a month.
Kentucky–DUI checkpoints are legal and are conducted weekly.
Louisiana–The state Supreme Court recently authorized the use of DUI checkpoints.
Maine–DUI checkpoints are legal but rare.
Maryland–DUI checkpoints are legal and are conducted weekly.
Massachusetts–DUI checkpoints are conducted year round.
Michigan–DUI checkpoints are specifically classified as illegal by the Michigan state constitution.
Minnesota–DUI checkpoints are illegal by the Minnesota state constitution.
Mississippi–DUI checkpoints are conducted weekly.
Missouri–DUI checkpoints are conducted twice a month.
Montana–By state law, only “safety spot checks” are allowed.
Nebraska–DUI checkpoints are conducted 6 – 10 times per month.
Nevada–DUI checkpoints are conducted twice a month.
New Hampshire–According to the New Hampshire DPS, DUI checkpoints are conducted weekly, “weather permitting.”
New Jersey–DUI checkpoints are conducted once or twice a month.
New Mexico– New Mexico law states “DUI checkpoints set up to detect and apprehend drunk drivers are constitutionally permissable as long as law enforcement follows . . . guidelines to ensure their reasonableness.”
New York–DUI checkpoints are legal and conducted weekly.
North Carolina–DUI checkpoints are conducted weekly.
North Dakota–DUI checkpoints are legal but not often conducted.
Ohio–DUI checkpoints are conducted regularly throughout the year.
Oklahoma–DUI checkpoints are conducted once or twice a month.
Oregon–DUI checkpoints are illegal under state constitution.
Pennsylvania–Pennsylvania conducts the third-most DUI checkpoints in America, at a rate of “several hundred per year.”
Rhode Island–DUI checkpoints are illegal by Rhode Island law.
South Carolina–DUI checkpoints are legal but not conducted regularly.
South Dakota–DUI checkpoints are conducted weekly.
Tennessee–DUI checkpoints are currently under challenge at the state Supreme Court level.
Texas– DUI checkpoints are illegal under Texas’ own interpretation of the Federal constitution.
Utah–DUI checkpoints are conducted six times a year.
Vermont–DUI checkpoints are conducted weekly.
Virginia–DUI checkpoints are conducted weekly.
Washington–DUI checkpoints are illegal by state law.
West Virginia–DUI checkpoints are conducted weekly.
Wisconsin–DUI checkpoints are prohibited by law.
Wyoming–DUI checkpoints are illegal due to the state’s interpretation of Federal roadblock statutes.
Where Is Gay Marriage Legal?
There are many places in the world where homosexuals are allowed to get married or to form civil unions. Gay marriage is a hot-button issue in America, but in a few places around the world, gay marriage and union has been legal for years.
Gay Marriage vs. Civil Unions
Not every gay marriage law allows traditional marriage between homosexuals. Many cities in America and countries around the world have allowed for something called “civil unions” as a concession to the gay community without angering that portion of the population that believes marriage should only take place between a man and a woman.
The concept of a “civil union” is a recent one. The concept was born in Denmark in 1989 and has spread around the worldsince then. A civil union gives a same-sex couples the same rights, benefits, and responsibilities as a married couple. Civil unions between homosexuals are favored in areas where making a change to marriage law would be time-consuming and costly, or in areas with a heavily religious population.
Every civil union law is a little different–civil unions in the state of Vermont, for example, are intended to completely imitate marriage, providing same-sex couples with a viable path to marriage without addressing the issue of whether or not marriage is defined as between a man and a woman. Other civil unions are more restrictive, creating civil unions that are distinct from marriage and may not allow all the same rights to same sex couples that traditional married couples would have.
Gay Marriage in America
Here is a breakdown of every state in America and their policy toward gay marriage and civil unions.
Alabama–Marriage is defined as a union between a man and a woman. No civil unions, no gay marriage.
Alaska–Marriage is defined as a union between a man and a woman. No civil unions, no gay marriage.
Arizona–Marriage is defined as a union between a man and a woman. No civil unions, no gay marriage.
Arkansas–Marriage is defined as a union between a man and a woman. No civil unions, no gay marriage.
California–The law in California banning gay marriage is still being worked out in the courts. For now, civil unions are available under certain conditions, and are essentially the same as heterosexual marriages in terms of rights and responsibilities.
Colorado–Marriage is defined as a union between a man and a woman. There are provisions that allow for civil unions.
Connecticut–Gay marriages and civil unions are legal in Connecticut.
Delaware–Marriage is defined as a union between a man and a woman. No civil unions, no gay marriage.
District of Columbia–Both domestic partnerships and gay marriage are legal.
Florida–Marriage is defined as a union between a man and a woman. No civil unions, no gay marriage.
Georgia–Marriage is defined as a union between a man and a woman. No civil unions, no gay marriage.
Hawaii–A legal gray area exists in Hawaiian civil union laws. A civil union law is being voted on as of this writing.
Idaho–Marriage is defined as a union between a man and a woman. No civil unions, no gay marriage.
Illinois–Marriage is defined as a union between a man and a woman. No civil unions, no gay marriage.
Indiana–Marriage is defined as a union between a man and a woman. No civil unions, no gay marriage.
Iowa–Marriage is defined as a union between a man and a woman. No civil unions, no gay marriage.
Kansas–Marriage is defined as a union between a man and a woman. No civil unions, no gay marriage.
Kentucky–Marriage is defined as a union between a man and a woman. No civil unions, no gay marriage.
Louisiana–Marriage is defined as a union between a man and a woman. No civil unions, no gay marriage.
Maine–Same-sex couples married in states where their union is legal can apply for domestic partnerships in Maine.
Maryland–One of the oldest “definition of marriage as between a man and a woman” laws, Maryland has banned gay marriage since 1973. Marriage is defined as a union between a man and a woman. No civil unions, no gay marriage.
Massachusetts–Gay marriages and civil unions are legal in Massachusetts.
Michigan–Marriage is defined as a union between a man and a woman. No civil unions, no gay marriage.
Minnesota–Marriage is defined as a union between a man and a woman. No civil unions, no gay marriage.
Mississippi–Marriage is defined as a union between a man and a woman. No civil unions, no gay marriage.
Missouri–Marriage is defined as a union between a man and a woman. No civil unions, no gay marriage.
Montana–Marriage is defined as a union between a man and a woman. No civil unions, no gay marriage.
Nebraska–Marriage is defined as a union between a man and a woman. No civil unions, no gay marriage.
Nevada–Marriage is defined as a union between a man and a woman. No civil unions, no gay marriage.
New Hampshire–Gay marriage is legal in New Hampshire. In fact, there’s no such thing as a “civil union” as of January 1, 2011. That’s the day that all “civil unions” became legal marriages.
New Jersey–The only legal marriage status for same-sex couples in New Jersey is a limited civil union.
New Mexico–Marriage is defined as a union between a man and a woman. No civil unions, no gay marriage.
New York–Marriage is defined as a union between a man and a woman. No civil unions, no gay marriage.
North Carolina–Marriage is defined as a union between a man and a woman. No civil unions, no gay marriage.
North Dakota–Marriage is defined as a union between a man and a woman. No civil unions, no gay marriage.
Ohio–Marriage is defined as a union between a man and a woman. No civil unions, no gay marriage.
Oklahoma–Marriage is defined as a union between a man and a woman. No civil unions, no gay marriage.
Oregon–Civil unions only.
Pennsylvania–Marriage is defined as a union between a man and a woman. No civil unions, no gay marriage.
Rhode Island–Marriage is defined as a union between a man and a woman. No civil unions, no gay marriage.
South Carolina–Marriage is defined as a union between a man and a woman. No civil unions, no gay marriage.
South Dakota–Marriage is defined as a union between a man and a woman. No civil unions, no gay marriage.
Tennessee–Marriage is defined as a union between a man and a woman. No civil unions, no gay marriage.
Texas–Marriage is defined as a union between a man and a woman. No civil unions, no gay marriage.
Utah–Marriage is defined as a union between a man and a woman. No civil unions, no gay marriage.
Vermont–Full marriage rights available to same-sex couples. No civil unions allowed.
Virginia–Marriage is defined as a union between a man and a woman. No civil unions, no gay marriage.
Washington–Marriage is defined as a union between a man and a woman. No civil unions, no gay marriage.
West Virginia–Marriage is defined as a union between a man and a woman. No civil unions, no gay marriage.
Wisconsin–Limited domestic partnerships exist, but there is no legal gay marriage.
Wyoming–Marriage is defined as a union between a man and a woman. No civil unions, no gay marriage.
What is used to suppress a discharge, reusable, silent but deadly, and banned in 15 different states? Gun silencers have received a bad rep in certain states, others embrace the weapon during hunting season. Each state has their reasons for banning the use of them, but in most cases you have liberal politicians who like to pass “Feel good” legislation that does nothing to prevent criminal acts. In fact according to the United States Department of Justice (USDOJ), of the millions of legally owned suppressors and assault weapons in the US, only .01% of them will ever be used in a criminal act.
Those who reside in a state where silencers are illegal bay have a different interpretation of an assault weapon as well. An assault weapon to most people is considered a fully or semi automatic weapon. Liberal politicians see assault weapons as more of a genre for guns then a function. For example, pistols that look like a sub-machine guns, pistols with detachable magazines, pistols with threaded barrels, pistols with silencers or a forward pistol grip.
If you carry any of these in the following states you may unintentionally be committing a felony.
- Washington DC
- New Jersey
- New York
- North Dakota
- Rhode Island
- West Virginia
Most individuals who legally own a suppressive hand gun use them for hunting purposes. Sure video games portray silencers as a bad example and therefore radicals claim silencers should be considered an assault attachment, but the fact is they are effective for hunting. Criminal investigations aren’t impaired when a gun silencer is used, in fact in some cases it even helps identify the criminal. Here is an interesting tid bit, in other countries it is considered rude to fire a weapon without a gun silencer due to the irritating and disruptive noise.
- Is It Illegal to Drive without Car Insurance?
- Is It Illegal to Drive Barefoot?
- Is It Illegal to Be High?
- Is It Illegal to Sleep in Your Car?
- Is Drinking Absinthe Illegal?
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There’s nothing like the feel of the open road — just you, your car, and miles of highway stretching off into the distance. Driving is the definition of freedom, a past time as American as baseball.
Sometimes you want to feel the gas pedal underneath your toes, you want to feel directly connected to your car’s engine. Sometimes you just want to drive barefoot.
What are the legal ramifications of driving without shoes?
Our research indicated two facts –
1. There is no specific law restricting the operation of a motor vehicle without shoes in any of the fifty states or the District of Columbia
2. Every state’s department of public safety has a recommendation that drivers wear shoes, either to avoid reckless driving charges (a very real possibility) or injury during an accident.
So, driving barefoot can get you ticketed for reckless driving (or any number of other statutes) and can cause severe injury in the case of an accident.
While you will not be ticketed specifically for “driving barefoot”, your state’s DPS can ticket you for any number of driving offenses related to barefoot driving.
If you believe tradition, when automobiles first appeared on the scene, they were not covered in upholstery, no floor mats and nothing to block the feet of the driver from the heat of the engine. During these times, a barefoot driver risked serious burns to their feet if not wearing proper footwear. For many people, this old tradition of covering the feet to protect them from the engine is the main reason they feel the need to wear shoes.
Driving barefoot is an unavoidable event sometimes. Maybe you lost your shoes after a day at the beach or are in a hurry to get to the emergency room or other emergency facility. Know your local laws and be extra careful when driving barefoot, and you should ‘get away’ with it just fine.
This article is part of a series we’re doing on “Is It Illegal?” The other post in this series is:
- Is It Illegal to Sleep In Your Car?
- Is It Illegal to Be High?
- Is It Illegal to Drink Absinthe in the United States?
Is It Illegal to Be High?
Yes, it is illegal to be high.
Here’s the situation — you and your buddies were sitting around listening to The Dark Side of the Moon and enjoying a joint or two. The night’s over and it is time to head home. On the way back to your house, you get pulled over for speeding. You know you don’t have anything illegal on you, and you haven’t been drinking, but still you gotta wonder — can the cop bust you simply for being high?
Drug Test got you worried? CLICK HERE
Let’s set aside the issue of driving under the influence of marijuana for just a moment and talk about the legality of being high.
Intoxication can be difficult to prove. When talking about alcohol intoxication, cops have several methods for determining your level of drunkenness, from field sobriety tests to breathalyzers to blood tests back at the police substation. With marijuana there is no really effective way to prove in a court of law that you were under the influence.
The short answer is Yes — it is illegal to be “under the influence of marijuana”, especially when you’re driving The problem lies with the officer’s ability to take stock of your level of intoxication.
Detecting Marijuana Intoxication
If the police really want to know if you’re under the influence of marijuana, the only true test is a blood test. There’s no “marijuana breathalyzer” (though one is being developed in California as I write this) so if a cop wants to bring you into the station, that officer will have to have good cause to do so.
A field sobriety test is fairly effective for detection of marijuana intoxication. Depending on the individual (and depending on how high they are) a typical field sobriety test could be tough. Walking a straight line, speaking clearly, etc — marijuana can make all those tasks difficult.
But for an officer to perform a field sobriety test on an individual who is high on marijuana there must be mitigating circumstances. Either you’ve been involved in an accident (which automatically triggers such a test) or you smell so much like marijuana that the officer can’t help but test. If you don’t appear too high and if you haven’t caused too much of a problem in your vehicle such as an accident or something, you probably won’t be tested.
Another sticking point for cops is that they usually have to see evidence on marijuana use in order to arrest you for it. If a cop finds marijuana, paraphernalia, or sees you smoking marijuana, then you will most certainly be arrested and given any drug test they can think of to prove your guilt.
But if you’re walking down the street, causing no trouble and not in possession of any drugs, you could possibly walk right up to a cop and say, “I’m high on marijuana.”
And they probably won’t do anything. If you aren’t driving or behaving criminally, a simple statement to a cop that you are intoxicated is usually not enough to warrant an arrest. On the other hand, don’t test this theory in real life. It’s always a bad idea to admit to any kind of illegal activity to a police officer.
The basic facts are as follows — while it is illegal to be high and operate a car, and while it is illegal to possess, smoke, or sell marijuana, it can be difficult to prove intoxication and therefore most of the time you can get away with.
Our advice is to obey all the laws in your jurisidction.
Drug Test got you worried? CLICK HERE
This article is part of a series we’re doing on “Is It Illegal?” The other posts in this series are:
What are Some Questions to Ask a Lawyer?
When you first sit down to consult with a lawyer, it may be difficult for you to think of questions you need answered. Many people are intimidated by lawyers the same way they are intimidated by doctors, dentists, or their mother-in-law. Here are a few key questions to ask at your first consultation.
According to this post at the website for The American Bar Association, the most important generic questions to ask a lawyer are –
- What is your experience in this area of legal practice?
- How long have you been practicing law?
- How long has your firm been practicing law?
- What kind of legal problems do you handle most often?
- Are most of your clients businesses or individuals?
The article goes on to suggest that you ask if there will be paralegals or other non-lawyer personnel working on your case. The article also suggests you ask as many questions about legal fees as you can think of, including how you are being charged (hourly, by the case, or by a percentage of winnings), how much the bill will be from start to finish, and any possible payment plans you can use to pay off your bill.
This blog post from AllBusiness.com has a long list of suggestions for good lawyer questions.
- How many cases like mine have you handled in the last year?
- How will you keep me informed of new developments?
- What is the possibility of a successful outcome?
- What are the chances of settling the case before trial?
Finally, here are some questions to ask a lawyer in the specific field of bankruptcy.
- Should I file for bankruptcy or do I have other options?
- Who will actually be handling my case?
- How much of your time is devoted to bankruptcy cases?
- How much do you charge for your bankruptcy services?
Sitting down for a consult with a lawyer can be expensive and nerve wracking. To make the most of your time and money, arrive prepared with questions you need answered. The lawyer will appreciate you saving his time, and you’ll appreciate getting the most bang for your buck.