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Most Common Legal Questions Asked by Family Members and Friends of FindLaw Employees

When you've got a legal question, to whom do you turn? I mean, besides the helpful FindLaw blogs. You probably ask that one friend who went to law school -- they're an expert, right? So you can imagine how many questions FindLaw's staff get from family and friends, covering every legal topic under the sun.

So here are a few of the more common questions we get asked, with some hopefully useful answers:

Get Out of Jail Free Card

Just because we're lawyers doesn't mean we're experts in criminal procedure. Well, a few of us have prosecutor or public defender experience, so we might be. But still, the number of criminal law questions we get is astounding. Everything from how to get out of a speeding ticket and if those red light cameras are legal to the ever popular distinction between murder charges and what's going on with all of these police shootings.

But most criminal questions stem from DUIs with the most popular, by far, being, "Should I refuse to take a breathalyzer test?" While there are circumstances where refusing a breath test is preferable to blowing a high BAC, you should be aware that there are implied consent laws that can impose automatic penalties (like suspending your license) for refusal.

Signs of the Times

Perhaps it's living in the high-demand market of the Bay Area, but questions about renting and landlords are quite common as well. Friends and family want to know:

In another possible commentary on our current condition, people want to know what happens to your debt after you die. While generally someone can't be held personally liable for another person's debt, the debt could pass on to a spouse, depending on the marital property laws in your state.

On the Fence

Finally, we also get quite a few real estate and property questions, mostly regarding trees, obstructed views, and fence disputes. While fencing laws will depend on your local ordinances and when the fence was constructed, generally both parties are responsible for the fence, so our best advice to friends and family is to be amicable with your neighbors and try to reconcile disputes without turning to litigation.

And if that's not possible, we point them to FindLaw's extensive directory of experienced attorneys.