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We get so many good legal questions that aren’t worthy of a full blog. So every few months I like to group the “best of the rest” in to one post. Here are some great questions we’ve received recently:
I just found out that my ex-husband took out a life insurance policy on me. Is that legal?
It is. It’s up to the insurance company to choose to write or not write a life insurance policy. They don’t need your approval, but typically won’t do this because they can’t give you a medical exam. Most likely this is either a continuation of an old policy or an accidental death policy that would cover you if you were killed in a car accident or something like that. Your ex is likely wasting money.
Can you turn down an inheritance? It’s not much and I really don’t want it or to have to go through the legal hurdles.
Yes you can. This is called disclaiming an inheritance and it typically involves putting that in writing.
How do I fire my lawyer? They hardly return my calls and when they do they are really rude.
It doesn’t sound like calling them would do the trick. For most cases I would encourage you to have someone in place before getting rid of your current representation. It’s usually not hard to find (we can help with that), but in some cases it can be. In my experience, the new attorney can help you in communicating to the old one. In cases that are in court, the lawyer will need permission of the Judge to get out of the case.
I was accused of shoplifting. I didn’t do it. I wasn’t arrested, but the store had a lawyer send me a letter saying that I need to pay a re-stocking fee of the item for $400.00 and that if I don’t do it I could be arrested or sued. Do I have to pay?
No. I’m not saying you can’t get arrested still. It’s not likely, but possible. I’m not saying they won’t sue you. It’s not likely, but possible. But in any case they’d have to prove you did it and the fee for their damages can’t just be random like that. I think the attorneys who do this work are kind of gross and if it was me I wouldn’t pay, especially if I didn’t do anything. That’s not a guarantee of a result, but you don’t usually see a company paying a lawyer to sue someone for a few hundred dollars and if you were going to be arrested it likely would have happened already in most cases. I really don’t like these tactics because they, in my opinion, take advantage of a lot of people.
There was hair in my food. I’m so grossed out. Can I sue for that?
Anyone can sue for anything, but I don’t know any attorney who would take that case as it has no value beyond replacing the food you bought.
My soon to be ex wants to sell our home. I don’t want to. We are both on the title. Can she just list it without my approval?
Not unless she forges your name. If you are on the title, a sale can’t happen without your approval unless they get a court order to do so.
I was sued for a car accident but the other person ran the red light. How is that possible?
People lie all the time about what happened and insurance companies go after people who don’t have insurance. So there is a likelihood that one of those two things is happening here. Or maybe the police report got it wrong. Bottom line is that if you did get sued and had insurance at the time of the accident, report it to them and let them sort it out. That’s what they are there for.
My brother got killed by a random person. We learned that person was having a psychotic episode because their doctor took them off of their meds. Can we sue that doctor for not monitoring their patient which led to my brother’s death.
This is a really sad situation. Unfortunately, doctors generally don’t owe a duty to third parties. So if their malpractice causes harm to someone who isn’t their patient, courts have ruled that they can’t be held responsible.