Our Neighborhood

Terms and Documents for Planning Your Estate
Article written by AWD LAW Attorney Stephen Thompson

Fences make good neighbors. They keep the peace and promote harmony. They clearly delineate the boundary and give each side a clear indication of their property rights. No, this isn’t an article about real property boundaries (important, but for another day). Instead, this is an article about planning your estate. Similar to a fence, a clearly articulated estate plan is designed to keep the peace, promote harmony and give family members, creditors and other interested parties a clear statement of their respective rights, obligations and duties. And, the well-drafted estate plan will also save considerable costs, delays, aggravation and uncertainty.
Go Green, Save Green: 10 Tips for Offices
Article written by AWD LAW Attorney Jennifer Mott

Unless an office has an effective corporate sustainability policy, an enthusiastic green team of employees, and is housed in a solar-powered, LEED-certified building, odds are good the office can benefit from a bit of “greening.” Looking at office operations with an eye toward environmental issues can benefit the bottom line as well as the earth. At the basic level, consuming fewer resources reduces office expenses (i.e. utilities, paper, staff time), but can also increase office efficiency. Greening need not be a daunting task. Experience suggests many offices have “low hanging fruit” – relatively simple and inexpensive ways to make green changes. A little forethought can go a long way. Below are tips for the “typical” office to start saving green by going green:
end-of-life planning… for electronics
Article written by AWD LAW Attorney Jennifer Mott

Law offices are full of electronics—computers, monitors, cellphones, printers, copiers. As the next wave of smartphones, tablets and e-readers works their way into the office, lawyers will add yet more devices to their stockpiles. In 2009, 438 million new consumer electronics were sold, according to the most recent data from the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA).

At the end of their useful life in the office, these electronics are destined to join the e-waste stream. E-waste—electronics waste—generally refers to discarded electronics that may or may not be functional. E-waste is on the rise here and abroad. Americans generated 2.37 million tons of electronics that were ready for end-of-life disposition in 2009, a 120 percent increase over 1999 amounts.
Making the Case for a Greener Law Office
Article written by AWD LAW Attorney Jennifer Mott.

Green is the new black. It’s an oft-repeated mantra these days. Becoming more sustainable and environmentally friendly—“greening”—is everywhere in American culture and the business world. Consumers are seeking it. Business is selling it. Niche markets are helping it happen.

On the other hand, lawyers and law firms say, we are retained based on quality, skill, experience, outcomes and reputation—not on the sustainability of our law office. For the legal profession, is greening an important element, or is it an expensive luxury?
New Immigration Regulations Taking Effect
Article written by AWD LAW Attorney Kate Mahady

NOTE: On February 17 a federal judge blocked implementation of the following regulations. Additionally, Congress has threatened not to fund the Department of Homeland Security, which oversees implementation of immigration policy. At the time of printing, neither of these issues has been resolved. The following addresses the new immigration regulations that are set to be implemented once these issues are resolved.

On Feb. 18, 2015 new immigration regulations were set to take effect that would expand the previous Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals and make many people who are not United States citizens eligible to apply for work authorization in the U.S. for the first time. Under these new regulations, many people in Flagstaff and Northern Arizona will have the opportunity to legally enter the work force.
What to Do if Suspected of DUI
Article written by AWD LAW attorney Wendy A. Edwards

If you are ever confronted by the police as a suspect, remember two rules: First, don’t lie. Don’t say anything to the police that is not true. Second, don’t incriminate yourself. Don’t say anything that admits a fact that could cause you to get in trouble. Here’s how this advice plays out in the context of a DUI. If you have been drinking and get pulled over driving a vehicle, the police will ask questions about your drinking. An officer will likely tell you he can smell the odor of an intoxicating beverage and ask how much you have had to drink. The answer is simple and can be stated in a number of ways. Invoke your Fifth Amendment right to remain silent. This can be done by simply stating, “I plead the Fifth.” Alternately, you can state, “I do not want to answer any questions.” When you invoke your right to remain silent, your silence cannot be used against you in court. This means that the officer is not permitted to testify even that he asked the question, let alone that you refused to answer it.

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