What To Do When You’re Charged With A Crime

Knowing how to handle a situation can help you get through it less stressfully. Being arrested or charged with a crime is going to be stressful, and, unfortunately, there’s no way around that, but if you know what to do to protect your rights, you may get a better outcome. A lawyer who works in the realms of criminal defense law can help you strategize a legal plan to find a good solution for your situation. Here are some things to consider.

When You’re Arrested

You can be arrested and taken into custody without a warrant if law enforcement believes you violated the law. A judge can also issue a warrant for your arrest. You can turn yourself in if you aren’t already in custody when you become aware of the warrant or you can wait for law enforcement to find you and take you into custody. It depends on the charges, but for lesser offenses, you may just be issued a citation to appear in court. If you are arrested, just know that what you say to the officers can be used in a court of law to convict you. You do not have to say anything without a lawyer present to protect your rights. It can be better to wait to say anything until after you’ve spoken to a lawyer. A lawyer understands what statements can be taken out of context and used against someone later in the court or case.

Going Through an Arraignment

The arraignment is the formal hearing in which you’ll be advised about the charges you’re facing. You will also be advised about your rights, such as the right to an attorney, the right to a speedy trial, and the right against self-incrimination. You will also be asked how you plead. This is not the time to tell your side of the story. Generally speaking, you either plead not guilty or guilty. At your arraignment, the judge may place you into custody pending bail. You could be released on your own recognizance. Your lawyer can help you understand the process based on the charges against you and the procedures in the local jurisdiction.

Does Getting a Lawyer Involved Delay Your Case?

If you’re in custody, you may not want to wait to get a lawyer involved in your case. The short time you spend waiting for your lawyer before you get released can be a huge time saver in the long run. Advice from an experienced lawyer can help you get through the system more effectively without incriminating yourself and help set you up for a more positive outcome. You don’t necessarily need a criminal defense lawyer on speed dial, but you should expect to contact one if you are arrested and facing criminal charges. Consider making an appointment to discuss your case today with a criminal defense lawyer in Des Moines, IA from an experienced law firm like the Law Group Of Iowa.

What Is An Estate Planning Lawyer?

An estate planning lawyer in Memphis, TN is a legal professional who helps individuals and families create wills and trusts. They can also help you designate guardians for your children in the event something happens to you. Estate planning lawyers can also advise you on tax implications of your estate plan. If you are interested in creating an estate plan, it is important to consult with Patterson Bray PLLC to ensure that your plan is tailored to meet your specific needs.

Why do I need an estate plan?

You need an estate plan because you want to make sure that your assets are passed on to the people you love after your death in the most efficient way possible. You also want to choose your own personal representative, who is often called an executor. Without an estate plan, you might not be able to choose who will represent you and distribute your assets upon your death.

What does an estate planning lawyer do?

The estate planning lawyer in Memphis, TN plays a key role in this process. An experienced estate planning lawyer can help you navigate complex tax laws and ensure that your wishes are carried out according to your specifications.

What should I bring to my first meeting with an estate planning lawyer?

When meeting with an estate planning lawyer for the first time, you should bring any documentation related to your current financial situation and assets. This includes bank statements, investment statements, and real estate deeds. You should also bring a list of your loved ones and their contact information. If you have any specific questions or concerns, be sure to bring those up as well.

What are some of the most common mistakes people make when creating an estate plan?

One of the most common mistakes people make when creating an estate plan is not taking into account potential tax implications. Another mistake is failing to name a trustee or executor who will be responsible for carrying out your wishes after your death. It is also important to keep your estate plan updated as your life changes, such as if you acquire new assets or children. Estate planning lawyers in Memphis, TN from Patterson Bray PLLC can help you review your plan and make any necessary updates.

If I don’t have an estate plan, what happens to my property after I die?

If you do not have an estate plan in place, your property will be distributed according to state law. This may not be what you want, and it can often lead to lengthy and costly court proceedings. Estate planning is a vital step in ensuring that your wishes are carried out after your death. Contact an estate planning lawyer in Memphis, TN  from Patterson Bray PLLC to get started on creating your estate plan today.

The estate planning process can be a difficult one, especially if you’re unfamiliar with the legal jargon and complex processes often associated with it.

An Estate planning lawyer Memphis, TN from Patterson Bray PLLC can help you with everything from your will and living trust to your living will and health care power of attorney. Understanding more about what an estate planning lawyer does, how much one costs, and how to find an experienced estate planning attorney in Memphis can help you find and choose the best professional for your needs.

Estate Planning Considerations For Parents Of Dependent Children

If you have minor or otherwise dependent children, it is important to make sure that you have a comprehensive estate plan in place. It is also important to make sure that your estate plan is up to date at all times. Failure to make necessary changes to an existing estate plan can leave your loved ones—and the courts—unsure of what your true wishes may be in the event of your death or incapacitation. Similarly, if you do not have a legally enforceable estate plan in place at all times, you will leave your children vulnerable to the processes imposed by the state in such situations.

You need to make sure that your wishes are articulated in ways best described as “crystal clear” and to make sure that your estate planning documentation reflects shifts in these wishes or circumstances as time ticks by. The experienced Memphis, TN estate planning lawyer team at Patterson Bray PLLC can help you to achieve and maintain these critical objectives.

Estate Planning Lawyer – Memphis, TN

Not so long ago, most individuals drafted simple wills and then moved on without thinking much about their estate plan ever again. Nowadays, estate plans aren’t really complete without a will and/or trust dealing with a person’s assets, an advance healthcare directive, power of attorney designations, digital estate planning preparations, and (if applicable) guardianship designations for minor or otherwise dependent children. This is the minimum number of tools that tends to “make up” a comprehensive estate plan. If you’re missing any of these resources, your estate plan likely isn’t complete.

Estate Planning Considerations for Parents of Minor or Otherwise Dependent Children

If you become incapacitated or pass away without an estate plan in place, your assets will be distributed and the guardianship of your children will be determined by law, not by you. This is an outcome that must be avoided. If you are reading these words, you are proactive and savvy enough to understand that you need an updated estate plan in place to protect your kids. Don’t wait to act on this understanding. None of us knows how much time we will have before our estate plans become our legacy.

Legal Assistance Is Available

If you either have not yet constructed a legally enforceable estate plan or have not made significant updates to your existing plan since your needs, priorities, preferences, and/or circumstances have changed, it is time to get in touch with the experienced Tennessee legal team at Patterson Bray PLLC. Our dedicated and reputable staff have extensive experience assisting parents with constructing estate plans that meet their needs. Few people enjoy thinking about a time during which they will no longer be in a position to provide for their families. However, thinking about this inevitability is critical to ensuring that your children are properly taken care of after you’re gone. Please connect with our firm today to either begin or continue the process of taking these necessary legal steps forward. We look forward to speaking with you.

What Is Estate Planning?

Estate planning refers to the development of instructions that dictate how your estate will be managed after you pass away. Having an estate plan will ensure that the state will follow your orders regarding how you want your assets distributed. If you have intended beneficiaries, naming them in your plan makes it much easier and faster for them to receive any inheritance that you pass down. 

What should be included in an estate plan?

An estate plan contains important documents that provide information about your wishes for your estate as well as your preferences for the medical care that you will receive in the future. These documents include a will, living will, trust, and medical directives. Should an event occur that results in your incapacitation and inability to clearly communicate, your medical team and loved ones will refer to your estate plan. 

What mistakes should I avoid?

Many people tend to put off working on their estate plan until a major life event or emergency happens. However, an estate plan should be developed well before you have to go through a sudden life event. It is better if you have it prepared and complete with the documents that you need. Another mistake that people make regarding estate planning is not consulting with their loved ones about their goals and preferences, such as concerning their medical needs. 

Can I update my estate plan? 

Once you have made an estate plan, you should not just finish it and never look at it again. Think of your estate plan as a living document that should be continuously updated. Review your plan periodically and make any necessary changes, such as after life events like marriage, death of a relative or the birth of a child. Your plan should always be current and contain the most up to date information and instructions. 

Why should I hire an estate planning lawyer? 

Managing your estate is a process that should be done earlier than later. Many people do not think that making an estate plan is necessary, but it offers a host of benefits, such as protecting your estate and ensuring your loved ones receive their inheritance. If you are at a loss at handling your estate and are not sure how to begin, a trusted and experienced estate planning lawyer in Memphis, TN, like one at Patterson Bray PLLC.

Hiring a lawyer to help you with your estate plan has many benefits. Developing an estate plan often takes a lot of time, and you need to have a strong understanding of estate laws so that you can make a suitable plan that meets the legal requirements. An estate plan lawyer can also suggest ways you can better secure your assets from the wrong hands and decrease your estate taxes. 

A trusted estate plan lawyer like one from Patterson Bray PLLC can guide you through the estate planning process. Learn more by scheduling a consultation with a qualified lawyer to discuss your goals.  

Steps to Take In A Personal Injury Claim

Whether your personal injury resulted from a car accident or slip and fall accident, it’s important to take the proper steps in order to receive fair compensation.

  • Take Photos: If you are physically able, it’s a good idea to take a few photos of the accident scene. If you were involved in a car accident, a personal injury lawyer in Memphis, TN might suggest taking photos of the damage to your vehicle, photos of any nearby traffic signs, and photos of skid marks on the road.
  • Talk to Witnesses: If there were bystanders present at the scene of the accident, don’t be afraid to ask for their names and contact information. A personal injury lawyer Memphis, TN clients trust may call these witnesses to testify on your behalf in court.
  • Seek Medical Care: Seeing a doctor for your personal injury is crucial, as a personal injury lawyer Memphis, TN residents count on can confirm. A doctor will examine your injury and determine the best treatment for it. Make sure to ask for copies of all relevant medical documents, including bills and X-rays, to include in your claim.
  • Hire a Personal Injury Lawyer: It may be in your best interest to work with an experienced Memphis personal injury lawyer on your case. Your lawyer may help you gather evidence, talk to insurance companies, and represent you in negotiations or court proceedings.

What Types of Cases Does a Personal Injury Lawyer Memphis, TN Trusts Handle?

At Patterson Bray, we represent victims who have been injured in all types of accidents. Whenever you have sustained injuries in an event caused by another party or parties’ negligence or recklessness, you may able to obtain financial compensation for any pain and loss you have suffered because of those injuries. Some of the most common types of accidents we handle include:

  • Motor vehicle accidents: Many of the victims we represent were injured in car accidents caused by another driver. Whether you were a driver, passenger, pedestrian, or cyclist, our personal injury lawyer Memphis, TN residents rely on can pursue damages against the at-fault driver who caused the accident. We also represent motorcycle accident and uninsured motorist accident victims.
  • Truck accidents: Accidents involving tractor-trailers can be more complex than other types of vehicle accidents. Not only may the truck driver be at-fault, but there may also be liability with the trucking company the driver worked for, and the cargo company who loaded the freight the truck was transporting. If a truck accident was due to a defective truck part, then the manufacturer of that part may also be liable.
  • Workplace Injuries: Under federal and state laws, employers owe a duty of care to provide a safe environment for employees. However, workplace injuries or illnesses do occur and, when they do, the employer is responsible for the employee’s medical bills as well as paying the employee their salary as they recover from their injuries. Unfortunately, this process can get complicated and many companies and/or their insurance companies attempt to either deny and injured worker’s claim or try to force the worker to return to their job before they are medical ready.
  • Construction Accidents: The construction industry is one of the most dangerous and is where the most workplace injuries occur. Many of these injuries are catastrophic for the victim and their families and often result in the victim’s death. Our firm specializes in construction site accidents and work diligently for victims and their loved ones.
  • Medical Malpractice: When we go to doctors, we put our trust and faith in them to heal us, not hurt us. But statistics show that preventable medical errors are the third leading cause of death for patients in this country. Medical staff can be guilty of missed or incorrect diagnosis, medication errors, and even operating on the wrong part of a patient, all leading to sometimes tragic injury to the patient.

Consulting with a Personal Injury Lawyer Memphis, TN Depends On

In your first meeting with a Memphis personal injury lawyer, he or she will likely want to learn more background information about your case. For example, your personal injury lawyer Memphis, TN victims call may ask you what sort of injury you suffered from the accident, how it occurred, who was involved, and if you have any evidence. If you have any documents that pertain to your case, such as medical records or police reports, don’t forget to bring them with you to the meeting.

Do not hesitate to ask questions of your own during the meeting as well. For instance, you might want to ask your lawyer if they have handle personal injury cases similar to yours in the past. These questions may help you learn more about their experience.

Call a Skilled Personal Injury Lawyer Memphis, TN Clients Recommend

If you suffered a personal injury, you may want to talk to a personal injury lawyer Memphis, TN residents respect. At Patterson Bray, we handle a wide range of personal injury cases and take the time to get to know our clients. Our policy is to cap the number of active injury cases our firm is handling at a given time. This allows each personal injury lawyer Memphis, TN clients depend on to be fully available to focus on each of our clients’ cases.

If you would like to talk with a compassionate personal injury lawyer in Memphis, TN, contact our firm today. At Patterson Bray, we’re happy to meet with potential clients to discuss their cases at length. These initial consultations give us the chance to evaluate the details of each case and to get to know our clients on a personal level.

Do not wait to hire legal representation for your personal injury case. You deserve justice for everything you have been through. If you are searching for a personal injury lawyer Memphis, TN offers, contact Patterson Bray at 901-372-5003.

Insurance Claims After An Accident

When your Memphis personal injury lawyer files a claim on your behalf with an insurance company, there are several different types of damages that he or she may pursue. Compensation for medical expenses may be awarded, as well as lost wages from being unable to work. Pain and suffering, emotional anguish, and other losses you have suffered might also be included in an injury claim.

The claim your attorney files will likely be either a first-party claim or a third-party claim. A first-party claim is one where you file a claim for your injuries with your own insurance company. This may happen if the accident was your own fault, or if you live in a “no fault” states. In these states, you file a claim with your own insurer regardless of who caused the accident. Other reasons why you might file a first-party claim for your injury would be if you were injured in a hit and run accident, if the other driver was underinsured, or if the other driver had no auto insurance. A personal injury lawyer Memphis, TN has to offer may help you navigate these complex situations.

A third-party claim is when you file a claim with another party’s insurance company. If a car accident was the other driver’s fault, your attorney may file the claim with that driver’s insurance company. If you were a passenger in someone’s vehicle and they crashed, the claim would be filed against the driver’s insurance company.

A third-party claim would also be filed if you were injured in a premises liability accident, such as in a shopping mall or business.

What an Injury Attorney May Do

Whether you are injured in a car crash, shopping mall, or someone’s home, a claim should be reported to the insurance company within a day or two after the accident. Once a claim is opened, the insurance company will begin an investigation of the accident to determine if your claim is valid.

The insurance company will make their determination, and if they find that their client was at fault, they will likely offer a settlement. In many situations, the settlement the company offers is less than what the victim deserves, or the insurance company drags out the claim in an attempt to discourage the victim.

Another result may be that they will deny the claim completely. This is why it is imperative to have a seasoned personal injury lawyer Memphis, TN residents depend on advocating for you.

Let a Personal Injury Lawyer in Memphis, TN Fight for You

If you have been injured in an accident, you do not have to go through the insurance process alone. Contact a personal injury lawyer Memphis, TN families trust from Patterson Bray at 901.372.5003 to find out how we may be able to help.

A personal injury lawyer Memphis, TN can provide likely knows how complicated insurance policies can be. This is especially true for vehicle-related accidents. When you are injured in a car accident caused by another party’s negligence or recklessness, you’ll likely file a claim with the at-fault party’s insurance company or, in some situations, with your own insurer. Tips on Filing a Personal Injury Lawsuit.

At Patterson Bray, we have been helping victims obtain the financial compensation they deserve for their injuries for many years. If you have been injured in an accident, consider contacting a personal injury lawyer Memphis, TN from our legal team to find out if you’re entitled to damages.

Types of Personal Injury Cases

There are a variety of ways that a person may succumb to an accident. If you have sustained damages such as injuries or financial loss, you may consider taking legal action in the form of a personal injury claim with our Memphis personal injury law firm. Taking legal action is a way to obtain damages from the party responsible for the accident. There are many ways that a personal injury case can occur. Our passionate team has represented a wide range of personal injury cases:

  • Car Accidents
  • Medical Malpractice
  • Trucking Accidents
  • Injuries in the 
  • Workplace
  • Premises Liability

Our Memphis personal injury law firm may first recommend that you first pursue an insurance claim in an attempt to settle your case outside of the courtroom. Victims have the advantage of resolving their case in as timely a manner as possible. While, in some cases, we may recommend filing a lawsuit, we will first work to resolve your case through the insurance claims process. 

Signs You Need Help from a Memphis Personal Injury Law Firm

In the wake of an accident, you may be unsure of whether it’s in your best interest to take legal action. There are many reasons for this. You may not be sure of whether you have a valid claim against the responsible party, or the idea of paying for a lawyer may give you pause. Here are some signs that may indicate the need for our Memphis personal injury law firm: 

  • You have been seriously injured and required medical treatment as a result
  • You are facing long term or permanent disabilities 
  • You are unable to work following the accident, causing lost wages and missed time away from work
  • You believe there was another party responsible for the accident
  • You have evidence that can support your case

Even if you are unsure, taking the time to at least meet with our Memphis personal injury lawyer will give us the ability to review your case and provide you with a clear direction moving forward. 

Patterson Bray is a Memphis personal injury law firm that understands the impact an accident can have on victims. In an instant, your entire life may change, leaving you with the harsh reality that the life you once knew may no longer be. Tennessee accident victims should carefully consider contacting the experienced lawyers at Patterson Bray. We are well versed in personal injury claims and have handled a vast range of personal injury cases. Contacting our personal injury law firm based in Memphis right from the start can provide you with the support and guidance you need in your time of need. To ensure that you retain the right legal team for the job, schedule your complimentary consultation with us today. 

Contact us today to schedule your complimentary consultation. Our legal team is prepared to help you. For more information, contact Patterson Bray, a Memphis personal injury law firm that is prepared to provide you with the representation that you deserve. 

The Basics of Personal Injury Lawsuits

When you or someone you love suffers an injury through someone else’s negligence, it may be tough to recover. Financial devastation may occur as a result of medical bills and a lack of income. Filing a personal injury case against the responsible party may be the best way to try and recoup some of what you lost. Understanding how the process of the litigation and the recovery of damages occurs may better prepare you for the road ahead. Lawsuit Filed  When a lawsuit is filed, the court dictates proper procedures. Your Memphis personal injury lawyer and the opposing side will go through a period of discovery; or rather, the time when all evidence relating to the incident that caused injury is exchanged. These include your medical records, work records, and any other pertinent info that would help a judge determine the outcome of your case. The Trial  If the parties involved cannot settle, the case proceeds to court. It is here that a judge, and possibly a jury, will hear the allegations and facts of the case side by side. There may be witness testimony including experts who may testify on behalf of either party. These individuals review the evidence and provide an opinion on a specific element of the case, such as medical diagnosis, treatment and mechanics of the incident. During this time, you can feel confident in knowing your Memphis personal injury attorney from Patterson Bray, will be at your side. Damages Finally, the judge or jury will evaluate the case. During this process, special attention is paid to the severity of the negligence, the impact the injury has on you, and any other outside factors that may impact your life. Your Memphis personal injury attorney will likely put forth a figure that you hope to recover, often referred to as damages. In a personal injury case, three types of damages may be imposed: Compensatory: A reimbursement of all the money you lost as a result of the injury. This includes medical bills, lost wages, therapy, medication, and any other amount you paid or lost. General: A less palpable figure awarded that takes into account your suffering and pain, mental anguish, and any loss of marital intimacy resulting from the injury. Punitive: In cases of extreme negligence, the court may seek to punish the defendant and award you money above and beyond what you asked. The imposition of punitive damages ranges from state to state, and as such, knowing the law where you live may help you understand the chances of getting this type of damage. When another person’s negligence or wrongdoing caused you harm, you may have the right to file a personal injury claim. Although you can do so on you own, it is not recommended without the assistance of a Memphis personal injury lawyer. At Patterson Bray, we have helped a broad number of individuals and families recover damages from vehicular accidents, slip and falls, premises liability accidents, and more. In general, we are able to successfully resolve a case before it reaches the stage of a lawsuit. However, in about 5% of cases, they will go to court and be heard before a judge and jury. If this happens to you, it will be important to understand the basics of personal injury lawsuits. Personal injury cases can be challenging to understand and usually result from a painful injury. Asking your Memphis personal injury attorney to set expectations for your case may be the best way to alleviate stress and avoid misunderstanding. Call Patterson Bray, for a consultation and case review.

Driving? It’s Deadly Out There: US Traffic Deaths Hit 16-Year High

Here are the numbers: 42,915 people.

That’s how many people the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration estimates died in motor vehicle crashes last year in the United States. 42,915 lives lost. It’s a 16-year-high statistic; in fact, it’s a 10.5% increase from the previous year. It’s roughly the population of Hackensack, New Jersey. It’s a crisis, and a national tragedy.

But it’s more than that: each of those people whose lives were ended on America’s roads leaves behind an empty seat at the dinner table; many leave behind children, parents and loved ones – unbearable pain. Traffic fatalities don’t just end lives; they tear apart families and disrupt the survivor’s lives.

And they’re happening more and more. (Research places this alarming statistic behind only South Africa and Thailand.)

And here are some of the options for those left behind to pick up the pieces according to our friends at Lesnevich, Marzano-Lesnevich, O’Cathain & O’Cathain, LLC. If a family member is killed in a car crash, what should you do? Here are some suggestions:

  • Speak with a licensed therapist. The loss of a family member — be it a primary parent, a beloved cousin, or whomever — is often fraught with grief. Feelings may include rage, survivor’s guilt, self-destructive tendencies, or some combination thereof. It’s understandable not to know how to live through these emotions, and it’s important to know you’re not alone. Consider speaking with a licensed therapist and/or seeking out grief counseling regularly. This is also good advice for your children if they have lost a parent. We all grieve differently, and we often hit certain stages of grief at different times. This means that we don’t always understand why other family members feel the way we do. Grief counseling and therapy will help manage this.
  • Take care of your own physical health. Trauma and grief can make us forget about our own physical health. The loss of motivation can mean that we start to lose out on exercise and fall out of our regular routines which have just been torn apart. As best you can, take the steps you need to exercise, sleep, and eat well.
  • Consult with a personal injury attorney. There are many, many factors in traffic fatalities. Factors can range from speeding, to distracted driving, to driving under the influence of drugs and/or alcohol, to an overworked truck driver – all resulting in careless driving. The point of filing a lawsuit against the other driver’s insurance company is to get money for what has been taken from you. It is the only way the law knows to compensate victims of trucking crashes and motor vehicle crashes.

A lawsuit can also help you get answers to your questions as to how the fatal crash happened.

Not every family member is allowed to recover compensation from the trauma of losing someone in a trucking crash or car crash. Most cases only allow a financial recovery for parents, spouses, and children.

Contact a personal injury lawyer today for help with your case.