I get asked a lot of relatively random stuff. Some people want to do things they shouldn’t and others just have great questions. Here are five scenarios we’ve come across recently that are good to know.
1. I got an alert that a sex video of me was posted on the internet. I’m assuming it was done by an ex-boyfriend. How can I get this taken down?
This is known as revenge porn and it’s now a felony in Illinois. You can certainly sue the website that is hosting it, but a better first step would likely be to go to the police and file a report. Hopefully they will arrest the ex. In general, you should never pass around or post a sex tape whether it was filmed in a consensual way or not. Better advice is to just never make a sex tape.
2. I got my first speeding ticket ever. I thought it was not a big deal and I’d just pay a fine, but when I went to court, the Judge said I could go to jail. What’s going on and how do I fix it?
This person was charged with aggravated speeding, in this case it was 92 in a 55. Aggravated speeding is any charge 26 miles or more over the limit. Once you hit more than 35 over as in this case, it’s a class A misdemeanor punishable by up to a year in jail and a $2,500 fine. The good news for this person is that they have a clean record. In many cases, an attorney can get the charge reduced so you avoid jail. You’ll still pay a fine, but not as big. Everyone speeds, but once you are in the 20 over range you should really be careful.
3. Last year I was hurt at work and scheduled for surgery. The insurance company sent my records to some doctor in Florida and now they’ve denied my treatment. Is this legal?
It is. The process is called “Utilization Review” which is a fancy term for sending your records to a doctor who doesn’t examine you. Often these are semi-retired hired guns who will say what the insurance company wants. It’s shady because they can send your records to as many doctors as they want until they get the answer they want. And you don’t know it happened until they find one against you. Nine doctors could be in your favor, but you’ll only hear about the 10th who isn’t. The good news is that when compared to a credible treating doctor it won’t have much weight. But it is legal and can delay your care.
4. My girlfriend is pregnant and just got fired. Is that legal?
It’s not legal typically to fire someone because they are pregnant, but not against the law to fire a pregnant person. So she’d have to prove that she was fired for that reason which is often easier said than done. If she suspects it, but doesn’t have hard evidence, she can/should file a complaint with the Illinois Department of Human Rights or the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission.
5. My Dad had two families. He had three kids with my mom and they divorced. He then married another woman who didn’t like us and had two kids with her. She died two years ago and my Dad just passed away. His will was created ten years ago and leaves everything to the newer kids. He told me that he didn’t want to make waves with his wife. Can my siblings and I contest this will?
Anyone can contest anything, but it doesn’t sound like they have a good leg to stand on. There is no law that requires a parent to leave anything to any children and they can cut off some and not others. You’d have to show that the will was fraudulent or that he didn’t know what he was doing when he signed it. That doesn’t sound like the case in this situation.
If you have any questions about these situations or anything else related to Illinois law, you can call us for free to speak with a lawyer at 312-346-5320.