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USDOJ Warms Up to Body-Worn Cameras on Joint Task Forces

Under a new policy, the Justice Department will let state and local officers on joint task forces use body-worn cameras in some cases. The policy follows a successful pilot program that ran in cities like Houston, Detroit, Wichita, and Salt Lake City over the last year. It is a response, in part, to the growing use Read More

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The Due Process Protections Act

Last week, Congress passed a new law that sharpens a fundamental rule of fairness in our system: “In all criminal proceedings, on the first scheduled court date when both prosecutor and defense counsel are present, the judge shall issue an oral and written order … that confirms the disclosure obligation of the prosecutor under Brady v. Maryland, Read More

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California Broadens Its Family Rights Act

Attention, small businesses and their employees. This one’s for you. Beginning January 1, 2021, if you employ five or more people in the state, you must provide them up to twelve weeks of unpaid leave, upon request, so they may welcome a newborn or care for a sick family member. You don’t have to pay Read More

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Anything You Can Do (I Can Do Better)

Okay, so it’s not a competition. But Orange County has rolled out remote hearings for traffic tickets, too. We talked about L.A. two weeks ago. But O.C. launched its own service at the same time, and they’ve got video. If you already had a hearing scheduled, it’ll be rescheduled and held remotely, and they’ll show you how. Read More

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L.A. Rolls Out Remote Hearings for Traffic Tickets

How’s this for useful information? Now, if you have a court date scheduled on or after September 14, you don’t have to go to court. You can appear by phone. And you can do it for traffic tickets as well as non-traffic infractions. But you can’t do it if you’re appearing for trial or you Read More

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L.A. Goes Remote for Civil and Criminal Cases

As of August 10, every criminal courtroom in the L.A. Superior Court is equipped to hold hearings by audio- or video-conference. You just need the judge’s approval and the defendant’s consent. The same goes, more or less, for family-law matters. In restraining-order or contempt proceedings, you can now appear by audio or video. For all other matters, it’s Read More

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Forward through the Darkness, Forward into Light

This month marks the 100th anniversary of the 19th Amendment, which enshrines these words: “The right of citizens of the United States to vote shall not be denied or abridged by the United States or by any State on account of sex.” That’s kind of a big deal. If you can think of a more Read More

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California Wants YOU for that Business or Professional License

Do you have a rap sheet? So do approximately one in three Americans, so you’re not alone. This summer, a new law went into effect that could help you earn that business or professional license you seek. We wrote about it in January 2019, but now that it’s effective, here’s more food for thought. It matters more Read More

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The ADA Celebrates Its Flirty Thirty

This week marks the 30th anniversary of the Americans with Disabilities Act, the federal law that bans discrimination based on disability in all parts of public life. Signed into law on July 26, 1990, it opens access for people to jobs, school, transportation, and private places of public accommodation like hotels and restaurants. To commemorate Read More

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We Can Work It Out

Are you fighting over child custody or visitation? Don’t do it if at all possible, we say. It compounds the pain of separation for kids and likely causes more lasting harm. Far better to decide for yourselves on your own terms than to have a court do it for you after you’ve torn each other Read More

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