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Boca Raton Florida Legal Blog

The federal government is about to 'get tough' on opioids

The opioid crisis has captured national attention in recent years. It finally reached the White House in March when President Donald Trump announced his new plan to combat the opioid epidemic in America. Trump's plan is multifaceted and could mean different things to different people. What does it mean to you?

An estimated two million Americans have a substance abuse disorder involving prescription painkillers, according to the American Society of Addiction Medicine. For many people in need of pain relief, an opioid prescription becomes an addiction, leading them to be an unwitting participant in America’s opioid epidemic. Further, some people seeking pain relief now find themselves facing criminal charges.

Can I clear my criminal record in Florida?

If you’ve ever been arrested, you now have a criminal record. Even if the charges against you were subsequently dropped, or even if you were found not guilty in court, the offense remains in your public history. Anyone who does a background check on you can discover the offense—sometimes just by conducting a simple Google search.

However, if the offense occurred in the state of Florida, you may have the opportunity to clear the offense from your record—either by sealing or expunging it.

Understanding the consequences of probation violation

Probation is a form of community supervision granted to low risk offenders in lieu of incarceration with the main goal of rehabilitation. During the probationary period, the person must comply with any conditions ordered by the court. The length of the probationary period and the terms differ for each case and usually depend on the severity of the offense and any prior convictions. The state of Florida views probation as a privilege and not a right.

Florida AG joins united push against opioid makers

Just in time for the 2018 elections, Attorney General Pam Bondi has announced a fresh initiative against drug makers and drug users.

The focus of this new initiative is on opioid drugs prescribed by physicians, including hydrocodone (Vicodin) and oxicodone (OxyContin).

Boating under the influence (BUI)

Boating while impaired is a serious offense. Florida has some of the strictest boating under the influence (BUI) laws in the nation, and some of the strongest enforcement.

If you have recently been issued a BUI citation, the process for fighting it is very similar to a driving under the influence (DUI). The consequences are not as severe, but you don’t want this on your record as a prior conviction. It is important to fight a BUI just like a DUI for that reason.

Tiger Woods to benefit from diversion program

Tiger Woods has spent more time in the news for his driving infractions than his golfing successes recently. Woods, who was arrested in May after he was found unconscious in his Mercedes-Benz in Palm Beach County, pleaded guilty to reckless driving recently, agreeing to enter a diversion program to settle a charge of driving under the influence that stemmed from the incident.

Woods, who did not test positive for alcohol but did have two painkillers, Xanax and Ambien in his toxicology report, was found in his car some fifteen miles from his house, according to an article by the LA Times. 

Probation: Is it just a 'get out of jail free' card?

People who are charged with a crime may be eligible for probation, especially if it's a person's first offense. Probation replaces some or all of a jail sentence that would have otherwise been imposed, so it is typically something to fight for if you are facing criminal charges.

However, receiving a sentence of probation is not something you should take lightly. While it can be a much more attractive option than spending weeks, months or years behind bars, there are several reasons why probation is not simply a "get out of jail free" card.

Think your DUI case is fruitless? Don't count yourself out

Being arrested on suspicion of drunk driving is a traumatic event for anyone. The process can be harrowing, disorienting and can be disheartening. However, while the sequence of events surrounding a DUI arrest can be overwhelming, they do not seal your fate by any means.

In Florida, an experienced DUI defense attorney can work with you to devise a viable defense strategy. Responsible drivers want to ensure their driving record is not tarnished by an unwarranted traffic violation, particularly with something as serious as drunk driving.

Florida counties punish marijuana possession differently

As you may know, the severity of the penalty for possessing marijuana depends in part on the amount that’s possessed. Possessing 20 grams or less is a misdemeanor. Any amount exceeding 20 grams is a felony.

It turns out that it’s not only the amount of marijuana that impacts the severity of the penalty imposed. The location where you’re using marijuana can also have a major effect on the type of penalty you receive.

When can the police search a car during a traffic stop?

Being pulled over by a police officer is always a tense situation. It can become an even more stressful event if the officer asks to search the car during the traffic stop.

If the officer has a search warrant, they will likely be able to legally search a driver’s car. However, there are also times when the police can search someone’s car. These searches may be legally valid even if the officer doesn’t have a warrant.

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