Brookville Legal Blog

Make sure your commercial lease does not expose you to risks

It's not easy to find a commercial space that is suitable for the needs of your Pennsylvania business. When do to find a place to lease that works for your company and fits your budget, you may feel tempted to go ahead and sign on the dotted line as soon as possible. It is smartest, however, to take your time and make sure that your commercial lease is not exposing you to any potential risks in the future.

The terms of your commercial lease are important. What is in this agreement will affect your business for years to come, and you will want to be sure that the terms are reasonable, sustainable and fair. Commercial leases are negotiable, and you will want to take the time to review the terms already in the agreement and work with the landlord to include other conditions and terms as needed.

Overcoming liability waivers that block personal injury claims

You have likely signed at least one waiver that is being used to absolve an entity from responsibility for a personal injury. If your child brought home a liability waiver for a field trip, you probably looked it over quickly and then signed it without much thought. Most summer camps require campers to sign a similar waiver before they can use the property.

Our lawyers want you and other Pennsylvania residents to understand that it is sometimes possible to challenge these waivers. Below you will find two examples of when you can fight against such a waiver and hold the entity responsible for your injury accountable.

The buyer risks associated with rent to own real estate purchases

Owning a home of your own is a large part of the American dream. Unfortunately, it is difficult for some Pennsylvania residents to qualify for a real estate purchase through traditional means.

A popular alternative for these people is buying a home through a rent-to-own situation. Under the state's real estate law, these purchases are 100% legal and could put you in a home of your own quickly. However, these deals do not come without a share of risk on the buyer's part.

Choosing the right type of trust

Estate planning often feels overwhelming. Adding to a person's trepidation, discussions about estate planning typically involves discussing issues of life and death. Further, the person who is attempting to plan their estate must make many critical decisions, especially when it comes to trusts.

You can find help making these decisions. Working with an estate planning attorney when choosing your trust provisions can take nearly all of the mystery out of the process. Additionally, your attorney can help you decide which trust(s) will best protect you and your family.

What are some fault grounds for a Pennsylvania divorce?

Getting a divorce is not quite as simple as it was in bygone days. Those considering a permanent split must make several important decisions before the process even begins. One of these decisions involves deciding whether or not to base a divorce on fault. A family law attorney can provide you with detailed guidance about pursuing a fault divorce. In the interim, this blog post will familiarize you with the grounds necessary for such a divorce.

In order for a family law court to approve a fault divorce, your spouse must have engaged in one or more activities that "injured" you. Below, you will find a brief outline of the fault grounds available to injured spouses.

  • Adultery: Unlike some other states, Pennsylvania allows a couple to divorce on the grounds of cheating.
  • Abandonment: If your spouse has deserted you without a reasonable reason for at least one year, you may pursue a divorce on this ground.
  • Endangerment: This ground typically involves your spouse treating you cruelly or perhaps endangering your life or your health through violence.
  • Bigamy: If your spouse marries another without getting divorced first, you can seek a split based on such actions.
  • Intolerability: Getting divorced under this ground involves showing that your spouse forced you to live in intolerable conditions.
  • Imprisonment: If a court convicted your spouse of a crime resulting in at least two years in prison, it is possible to seek a fault divorce on such grounds.

Title insurance is an important part of any property purchase

The Pennsylvania you know today came about in 1681 when King Charles II gave the land to William Penn as payment for a debt. Even before that time, people have owned land in the state. When you purchase a piece of property or a home, it may be new to you, but it probably changed hands numerous times since at least 1681.

Why the history lesson? Well, you need to know that when you buy property here, you need to make sure you actually own it. A search of hundreds of years of land records could reveal problems with you receiving legal ownership of it. 

Disturbing facts about driving while impaired

All American states have a vast amount of statistics about motor vehicle accidents caused by impaired driving. As those of us who live and work in Pennsylvania already know, this state has its own share of crashes caused by alcohol and drugs. With all of the widespread knowledge regarding impaired driving, it is natural to wonder why these motor vehicle accidents continue to occur.

Unfortunately, there is no answer to the question of why. However, continuing to spread facts regarding impaired driving may at least reduce the statistics. Below you will find several unsettling facts about this phenomenon to share with the people you care about.

  • Nearly 10,500 people died in 2016 (the last year for which the Centers for Disease Control has figures) in motor vehicle accidents involving alcohol
  • Impairment caused by substances other than alcohol is a factor in approximately 16% of vehicle crashes
  • Every 120 seconds, a person suffers injury in a drunk driving accident
  • Those who experiment with alcohol while young are seven times more likely to experience an alcohol-related crash within their lifetimes
  • A drunk driver will operate a vehicle while impaired approximately 80 times before an arrest occurs
  • In the U.S., someone dies in an impaired driving crash about every 51 minutes

Avoid these common estate planning mistakes

During discussions with an attorney about estate planning, there is much talk about what you should do to create a solid plan. These discussions are extremely important as they inform you of the most effective ways to protect your estate and make your passing easier for your family. However, there are additional discussions that are equally important.

One of these discussions involves talking about mistakes that could render your plan ineffective during and after your estate planning efforts. This post will inform Pennsylvania residents about a few potential errors to avoid.

Is it okay to start dating while getting a divorce?

Dating during a divorce is one of those tricky areas of family law. On one hand, your spouse may not care what you do, but on the other hand, you might end up injuring your spouse's ego if you begin a new relationship so soon. As many people have already discovered, it is unwise to upset your current spouse unnecessarily if your divorce is still in progress.

There are many other reasons to resist a new relationship if you are still legally married. For example, you may not be as ready as you think you are to enter the dating scene. For your own mental health, it is wise to wait until you have emerged from divorce completely and are emotionally ready to start fresh with someone new. Additional reasons to avoid dating during your divorce include the following.

  • Pennsylvania is an at-fault divorce state, which means that your spouse could raise adultery issues before the court
  • Dating during divorce may negatively affect your final property settlement as well as any spousal support you request
  • If you share children with your spouse, your kids may resent you for dating too soon, and it may harm their sense of security and well-being
  • Avoiding new intimate relationships gives you ample time to adjust to life after divorce, which means you will foster better relationships down the road

What is the best way to resolve boundary disputes with neighbors?

Fortunately, an attorney experienced with real estate law in Pennsylvania can help property owners address boundary disputes before they grow out of hand. Several different options exist depending upon the nature of your dispute. This post will highlight some of the most effective ways to resolve unwanted boundary disputes.

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