Tag: Legal

Student Loan Crisis: Is Bankruptcy the Answer?

Every graduate has the same message drilled into their head by every financial aid department: bankruptcy won’t save you from your student loans. The case In Re Brunner lists several factors that would allow for discharge of your student loan debt, but practically speaking, the “Brunner Test” is a very hard burden to meet. The three-prong test is as follows: (1) that you cannot maintain a minimal standard of living if to pay the student loans; (2) that some “additional circumstances exist” that...

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National Law Day – 2019 Wrap-Up

I just wanted to take a moment to thank everyone who made our year’s National Law Day celebrations possible. From our esteemed speakers to our amazing patrons, thank you for coming out and taking part in honoring the role of law in our society. This year’s theme was “Free Speech, Free Press, and Free Society,” which resounded throughout our events. There is a reason why Free Speech was first amongst our numbered amendments (hopefully it just wasn’t a typo). In the age where your privacy and your...

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National Law Day – Judicial Independence Panel Discussion

In honor of National Law Day, our library will be holding a judicial panel discussion with three esteemed justices from the Fourth Court of Appeal and two Riverside County Superior Court judges about the role of judicial independence in a politically divided society. But what is judicial independence and what shape does it take in the California judicial system? Judicial independence allows our judicial officers the ability to do their jobs without external influences. Let’s just say that the...

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Whose Dance is this?

For those of you not familiar with some of my past blogs, I took a liking to a story about a macaque who lived in Indonesia. The monkey allegedly took a selfie and from there ensued a three-year legal struggle as to whether non-human animals could legally own copyrights to photographs. If you’d like to catch up with these stories, please read the blogs from: May 2018: Part 3; November 2016: Part 2; October 2015: Part 1. The reason I bring up these past blogs is that when I read about the...

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New Law Would Eliminate Bail

On August 28th of last year, Governor Jerry Brown signed SB10, better known as the bail reform bill, into law. Originally scheduled to go into effect in October 2019, the new law promises to transform conditions of pretrial release and is already being used in test programs in several counties. For example, Napa County has a similar system in place and has reported a lower rate of recidivism. Under current law, those facing misdemeanor charges are usually released on their own recognizance and...

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What was lost was (almost) found

Isn’t it amazing what you can find if you look hard (or long) enough?  Take for example the gentleman recently visited our Indio branch with a very straight forward request (well, as “straight forward” as a legal research question can be, I guess). Seems he wanted to know if we had anything by “Witkin” dealing with small claims procedures. For those not in the know “Witkin” is a code word for the series of books written by Bernard E. Witkin.  The Witkin...

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We’ve Got Some Great Cheat Sheets

Do you remember the first day of the first job you ever had?  Were you a wizard at what you were doing?  Was there a learning curve?  Did you wish you had a cheat sheet or something like that to help you get you through your paces? I remember years back when I first graduated from law school I couldn’t get hired to save my life at a law firm so I decided to strike out and start my own little business with area attorneys I had been golfing with.  I started serving process, writing motions...

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RCLL’s LW17 Legal Clinic

Library Week is a time to celebrate libraries.  In addition to the programs we offer, and the resources we provide, one thing many Riversidians look forward to every year is the Legal Clinic the RCLL hosts during National Library Week.  This years’ Legal Clinic was a little different in that our Riverside, Indio and Temecula branches all held clinics at their own locations. We had a total of 60 patrons participate in these clinics, as well as 16 attorneys. The areas of law covered by the...

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“Can I get legal advice at a law library?”

Is there someone at the law library who can advise what I should do in my case?  Short answer is, no. What you are asking is whether library staff can give you legal advice in your matter and you cannot get legal advice at a law library. What you can get is help finding the answers to legal questions that you do have. Every day I am asked questions that would require me to give legal advice and I think that we often get confused as to what constitutes legal advice. Legal advice refers to written...

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