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Salem Legal Blog

Defining the proper use of self-defense

It is easy for people to roll their eyes when someone in Salem offers up self-defense as justification in an assault case. That was the common reaction amongst several of those that we here at Van Ness, Williamson LLP have worked with before they were actually placed in a situation where reactive force was warranted. If you found yourself in a scenario where you or others felt threatened, and you reacted in a way that now has you facing criminal charges, understanding when the law allows you to use force may be the key to successfully defending yourself. 

Per the Oregon State Legislature, it is recognized that there are scenarios in which actions which would otherwise be considered criminal are justified. These are when such action is needed as an emergency measure to avoid sustaining either a public or private injury. The severity of the injury is what then justifies self-defense. If it is perceived to be so severe that "the standards of intelligence and morality" would dictate that doing whatever is necessary to avoid it is preferable to being subjected to the criminal penalties you may face in doing so, then the use of force is justified. 

Things to watch for in executive non-compete agreements

Non-compete agreements are a common practice in companies for employees at all levels in an organization. However, CEOs and others in executive positions have more at stake financially than frontline employees. Therefore, executive-level jobseekers should be wary of signing away their non-compete rights without carefully examining what is at stake.

A comprehensive non-compete agreement will address several factors, but there are some central issues that are commonplace. It's important to remember that a non-compete serves the employer first and foremost, so potential employees should know what items to specifically pay attention to.

How can you make your divorce easier on the children?

Your divorce is likely to be one of the most emotionally challenging times of your life, regardless of how well you and your spouse get along. Divorce is even harder on children. It can be upsetting and traumatic to see their parents living in different places, as well as confusing when they are expected to split their time between homes. You and other Oregon parents may wonder how to make this period less conflicting for your children.

According to the Huffington Post, children often act out in different ways in response to their parents’ divorce. Your older child, for example, may start to have difficulties in school, withdraw from activities he or she once enjoyed and rely more on friends for emotional support than on you or your ex-spouse. On the other hand, his or her younger sibling may seem clingier and could regress to earlier development stages, such as bedwetting, sucking a thumb or being afraid of the dark.

Tips on Handling a Difficult Divorce

While divorce is rarely easy, in some cases it can be highly stress inducing. High conflict divorces fall into this category, and conflict can become even greater if one or both parties fail to see eye to eye on major issues. If you’re going through a difficult divorce in Oregon, the following tips from Psychology Today can help you navigate the process.

With highly contentious divorces, it’s crucial that all official decrees are specific as possible to prevent one or both parents from behaving in an inappropriate manner. For instance, instead of saying the non-custodial parent will have the child over the weekend, visitation guidelines should have specific information regarding times, dates, and locations. This will prevent parents from returning the children late Sunday evening (which would still be acceptable if guidelines were kept vague) just to spite their exes.

How do I determine the right brewery license for my business?

One glance at the Oregon regulations regarding brewing is probably enough to make you want to give up on your application. However, as you might expect from the many microbreweries, wine makers and distillers in the state, getting a license is not all that complicated with the right guidance. The key is to develop a licensing strategy that fits your current operations and allows for your company to grow easily according to your plan. 

The State of Oregon lists over 25 types of liquor licenses in three major types for nearly any brewing enterprise you could imagine:

  • Special event permits
  • Annual licenses
  • Multi-year licenses

Understanding the legalities of Oregon open & concealed carry

Oregon is an open carry state where adults, unless prohibited by law, can openly carry a firearm without a permit. While Oregon has relatively loose firearms regulations, there are limitations in place that prevent certain people from owning a gun and carrying a firearm is not permitted everywhere.

Who is prohibited from possessing a firearm?

What is insider trading?

There are many activities that may occur in your Oregon business that could lead to business litigation. Some are more serious than others. Some may even be criminal acts that could end up with someone in jail. One such issue is insider trading. As the name suggests, insider trading is when someone uses inside information or information that is not publically known to influence trading decisions, according to Money Crashers. 

Insider trading is bad because it gives unfair advantages and negatively impacts others. Investing is supposed to be done on an even playing field, but if you have information that you know will affect stocks and nobody else has that information, it is not fair for you to act on the information and sell or buy. Prices can be driven up or down due to this action, which affects everyone. 

Threats of OSU campus shooting lead to arrest in Corvallis

The number of school shootings seen in recent years has served to heighten the collective consciousness of people both in Salem and throughout the rest of the country. As these events take place, special attention is often paid to the subtle clues perpetrators may have given prior to carrying out the acts, and how such indicators may be identified in order to prevent similar tragedies from happening in the future. While it is perfectly reasonable to expect that law enforcement officials will take any perceived threats of violence (no matter where they may potentially occur) seriously, it should also be remembered that words may not always lead to actions. 

Twitter threats describing a potential shooting on the campus of Oregon State University recently led local authorities to investigate Corvallis resident. The tweets were shared with campus officials through a statewide school safety tip line. While school administrators did not close facilities or evacuate students, they did share the information with law enforcement. The man was found and arrested on a misdemeanor charge of disorderly conduct. He had been a student at the school, yet had left before completing his studies. Whether his premature exit from the school was a motivating factor for the threats was not shared. The details of the tweets were also not made available. 

When a custody dispute gets out of hand

We know how hard life can be for parents who are working their way through a bitter divorce. From disagreements involving the distribution of marital property and worries about paying or even receiving child support to uncertainty about their future, the end of marriage is often a major life change for both parties. However, issues involving the custody of children can be especially hard for custodial and non-custodial parents, not to mention their children. If you are involved in a custody dispute that has become hostile or taken a turn for the worse, you should carefully review which options you have and strive to protect your child's best interests.

Parents may disagree on a host of issues with regard to child custody. One parent may disagree with the other's decision to move to a new city, while another parent may not be happy about the amount of time they are able to spend with their child. In some instances, parents may disagree with another parent's ability to have custody altogether. During these bitter disputes, some people may have to deal with hateful words, threats, and other problems, which may need to be presented in court, in some instances.

Oregon: a "sanctuary state"

In recent years, immigration has been in the news lots, with controversies on all sides of the debate. In 2017, Oregon found itself in the middle of it all because of a 30-year-old incident in a local restaurant. The commotion had come about when deputies questioned immigrants about their legal status without having any other complaint against them.

Oregon Public Broadcasting reported that after the questioning in the restaurant, a lawmaker had introduced a bill to protect local law enforcement officers - and the governments that hire them - in similar circumstances. The representative had hoped to require the federal government to use its resources to enforce federal immigration law. Where things stood at the time, local governments were often footing the bill.

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