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Ohio Legal Blog

Bill Cosby sexual assault case ends in a mistrial

One of the highest-profile criminal cases in years ended in a mistrial on Saturday. The jury in the Bill Cosby aggravated indecent assault case was unable to reach a unanimous verdict, as is required. They deliberated for a total of six days, first reaching a deadlock on Thursday. The judge asked them to return to deliberations, but they were ultimately unable to return a verdict.

“This is neither a vindication nor a victory,” stated the judge before praising the jurors for their service and requesting that they refrain from discussing their deliberations. As a result of that request, very little information is available about the vote tally or the nature of their disagreement. The jury was made up of two African-Americans and ten whites, although it is unclear if race affected the deliberations.

Arrested for OVI over the holiday? Act now to save your license.

If you’ve been arrested for drunk driving in Ohio, your driving privileges are at immediate risk. You may know that your driver’s license can be suspended if you are convicted, but many people don’t realize that an administrative license suspension, or ALS, is put in place right away.

There are two kinds of driver’s license suspensions in Ohio. The first, the ALS, is virtually automatic. The court suspension, which comes after conviction, extends the ALS period. If you need to drive, you need to fight both types, and you only have 30 days to request a hearing to fight the ALS.

Annie's Law is now in effect

Annie's Law, which was passed into law in January, went into effect in April. It's goal is to keep drunk drivers off the streets of Ohio. This law will impact how people convicted of drinking and driving are punished. 

Columbus CEO Magazine names Jon Saia as one of Central Ohio's Top Lawyers

In its April publication, Columbus CEO Magazine named Jon Saia as one of Central Ohio's top lawyers for 2017. The list was compiled using Martindale-Hubbell's Peer Review Ratings. Only lawyers given the highest ratings by their peers - the AV Preeminent rating - were considered for the list. Columbus CEO noted that the lawyers honored have "reached the highest levels of ethical standards and professional excellence."  For more firm news and information about Jon and his OVI practice, visit http://www.splaws.com/About/Jon-J-Saia.shtml .

Prince estate hits probate court, singer's siblings named heirs

It seems celebrities are no more likely than others to have a will or estate plan in place. That was apparently the case for the internationally renowned artist known as Prince, who died just over a year ago.

Whenever someone dies without a will, any state where they own substantial property will still need to transfer the title to that property to an appropriate heir. (Only if there are no heirs whatsoever does the property revert to the estate.) The way that retitling is done is through a probate proceeding for what is known as an intestate estate. That simply means there is no known testament (will or estate plan).

Ohio Supreme Court: Warrantless search of student backpack was OK

If a high school student leaves his backpack on the bus, would it be fair for him or her to expect it to be left unopened? Would it put anyone in danger? What if there was a rumor the student was a gang member?

These are the questions the Ohio Supreme Court recently answered in the case of a Columbus high school student who was charged with possession of a deadly weapon after leaving his bag unattended on a bus.

Have you considered mediation to resolve your probate dispute?

There are a variety of situations in which a spouse, family member or other beneficiary might become in a probate dispute. While good estate planning can prevent many family conflicts, it’s not uncommon for an excluded beneficiary to dispute a will or estate plan. Your dying loved one might have been under undue influence from a friend or caregiver when they made decisions about who would receive their estate. They might not have been mentally competent when they revised their will. They might have had multiple wills -- or no will at all.

With money, cherished property, or fairness at stake, families who might otherwise get along can find themselves on opposite sides of a courtroom. Children from different stages in the decedent’s life might find themselves treated differently. There may be very good reasons to challenge a will or estate plan.

If you died, how organized would your loved ones find your estate?

According to the Census Bureau, 14 million widows and widowers live in the U.S., or about a quarter of the population over 65. Every year, 800,000 Americans lose their spouses.

It's reality. People die, and they leave behind loved ones in emotional turmoil. That doesn't have to mean your loved ones have to suffer through financial turmoil during that difficult time. Taking time to create a solid estate plan and then keeping your estate organized can protect your loved ones from having to deal with hassles while in a fog of grief.

The benefits of probate in Ohio

Probate is an important part of everyone's life and really should not be avoided, much like many people tend to hear. Probate happens following someone's death whether or not he or she had a will. If you have a will in place that includes an estate plan, your surviving family members will be able to spend less time and money during the probate process.

Some of the advantages of probate include the following:

Jon Saia instructs OVI standardized field sobriety test course

Jon Saia, along with Robert La Pier and Ken Bossin, recently led a DWI Detection and Standardized Field Sobriety Test course in Cleveland, Ohio. Saia instructed students on the proper way to perform roadside field sobriety testing, an essential skill for attorneys practicing OVI/DWI defense. The course is the same one taken by law enforcement officers. Saia has been certified to train students in DWI Detection and Field Sobriety Testing since 2005 and has helped many attorneys across Ohio sharpen their skills through these courses. With his training, he has also given expert testimony in OVI cases regarding field sobriety testing and procedures.

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