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Vineland Legal Issues Blog

Family law: Film stars Rebecca Gayheart, Eric Dane to divorce

There are many reasons that couples give when they decide to divorce. Celebrity marriages, in particular, are notorious for ending in dramatic fashion. However, some New Jersey residents and others who are not familiar with family law might be surprised to find that many marriages, including a number of celebrity marriages, end for what seems to be no specific reason. 

After 14 years of marriage, actress Rebecca Gayheart, has filed for divorce from her husband, actor Eric Dane. The pair stated that there were irreconcilable differences behind the cause of their divorce. The couple has chosen not to share any specific differences or problems in their marriage, but the two have had their share of hardships in the last 14 years. Some of these hardships include the release of a personal video, a stint in rehab and depression. 

Husband suffers fatal personal injury in carjacking

For many, a carjacking is just a distant idea, a plot device in a movie or something that happens to others. However, for some New Jersey mall patrons, it was a very real and terrifying possibility. One woman has chosen to file a lawsuit against the mall itself, claiming that the administration could have prevented the fatal personal injury that her husband suffered. 

The carjacking that resulted in the man's death occurred in Dec. 2013, and unfortunately, the carjacking was not a one-time occurrence. This lawsuit has revealed that there were four previous carjackings in the mall parking lot. Because of these previous crimes, the widow and her attorney have asserted that the mall owners should have been aware of the problem and acted accordingly.

Estate planning tips

Preparing for one's death can be a daunting task. Many New Jersey residents may not know where or how to start the estate planning process. Beginning the process early can give the benefactor time to ensure that everything is properly planned and that all of the instructions that he or she wishes to leave are conveyed clearly. 

If a person is incapacitated and does not have an estate plan in place, that person's family members may have to appeal to the courts in order to obtain permission to make legal and health care decisions for him or him, or the courts might appoint a third party to make these decisions. In order to prevent this, individuals may appoint powers of attorney. A person who has been given health care power of attorney can make decisions regarding the benefactor's medical care, and he or she can help to ensure that the benefactor's wishes are carried out as they are described in a living will or advanced directive. Normal powers of attorney may also make health care decisions if needed, but they can also make financial decisions on the benefactor's behalf. 

Cancer and workers' compensation

At some point in their lives, many children across the nation, including New Jersey, will express a desire to be a firefighter. It isn't until several years later that they realize just how dangerous the job is. One state is considering a bill that will include certain cancer diagnoses in firefighters' workers' compensation claims. If it is passed, it could possibly pave the way for similar bills to be passed in other states. 

While out on the job, firefighters come into contact with a wide variety of harmful substances. Some of these things include burning plastic, burning insulation, carbon monoxide or hydrogen cyanide, to name a few. Their gear is designed specifically to limit exposure to these substances, but as of now, it is impossible to eliminate contact entirely. Work continues to be done in an effort to further improve the existing gear and better protect the firefighters who use it.

Husband and wife each suffer a fatal personal injury in crash

When traveling on roadways many drivers fail to consider the possibility of equipment failure. A tire blowout, for instance, can have catastrophic results not just for the occupants of that vehicle, but also for anyone else nearby. A New Jersey husband and wife each suffered a fatal personal injury in a crash caused by a blown tire.

While traveling eastbound on Route 80 a dump truck's tire had a blowout. The driver was unable to maintain control of the vehicle, and it veered across the median into opposing traffic. Before it overturned, the dump truck struck the victims' pickup truck as well as a box truck.

Divorce: A thing that often happens once people hit 50

Did you get married in the early 1980s? If so, you perhaps own your home (or at least pay a mortgage loan on one), have one more children and have gone through several career changes by now. Like most things in life, your marriage has probably seen its ups and downs; in fact, if you're one of many in New Jersey who are considering filing or have recently filed for divorce, the downs may have over taken the ups. If so, you are definitely not alone.

Not only are you not the only one to be thinking about divorce as you enter your 50s, 60s or beyond, it has become so common in the past couple decades that marriage and divorce analysts have coined a new term known as "gray divorce" to describe it. No two marriages or divorces are exactly the same. You have your reasons just as others have theirs. Even so, if you were to discuss it with those who have trod the path before you, you might find similarities in your situations.

Business owners and estate planning

When discussing the benefits of writing a will, most people will reference personal benefits like how finances or other assets will be divided upon their death. However, business owners across New Jersey may be interested to know how estate planning can benefit their businesses. Creating an estate plan can help business owners outline how they wish their businesses to be handled in the event of their death or incapacitation. 

One way that an estate plan can help business owners is to help streamline the process of transferring assets. The benefactor could set up a revocable trust or power of attorney which allows an appointed individual, or group of individuals, to make decisions concerning the business or assets if the benefactor is unable to do so. This may also help to reduce the need for lengthy court proceedings and eliminate many legal fees.

Briana Renee files family law suit against husband

New Jersey residents know that the lives of celebrities are often exaggerated to extremes. However, there are times where such exaggerations are not necessary. Briana Renee of Little Women: LA has recently filed a family law suit against her husband, Matt Grundhoffer. In this suit, she is seeking not only a divorce but also spousal and child support. 

The mother of three has also filed a restraining order against her husband for domestic violence, which requires him to stay at least 100 yards away from Renee and her son. She has claimed that Grundhoffer subjected her to verbal abuse on at least two occasions and made threats against her life. In the suit, Renee specifies that her husband has a habit of getting drunk and threatening violence and suicide. At one point, she says that her husband threatened to kill everyone in the house, including the children.

Deployed soldier's family law case takes to social media

There are military families in every state, including New Jersey, that are familiar with the struggles associated with raising children while one parent is deployed overseas. These families don't always get to spend every holiday and birthday together, but many try to make the time they do have together count. Unfortunately, there are a number of soldiers who have run into family law problems while they are deployed. Some have had their spouses file for divorce, and others have lost custody of their children. One soldier and his wife have taken their child custody case to social media hoping to find help.

An Oklahoma sergeant was deployed to Afghanistan in December, leaving behind his current wife and 11-year-old son. He received word just before Christmas that temporary custody of his son was being given to the boy's biological mother who had not had custody in nine years. When he found out that he would be moving to live with his biological mother, the boy called his father overseas. When his father asked him what he wanted, the boy responded that he wanted his father to continue fighting. 

Crash causes 2 fatalities and 6 to suffer from personal injury

New Jersey residents may have heard about the recent fiery crash on Route 440. The accident was not caused by a single, large crash but a series of small accidents that compounded upon one another. These crashes ultimately resulted in the personal injury of multiple individuals, as well as more than one death. 

While the exact cause of the accident is unknown, authorities have been able to piece together the series of events which caused the injuries and fatalities. The accident began with only two vehicles, but by the time police arrived, there were six in total. Two people were killed in the crash, and six more were injured.

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