Responding To The Crime Of Paternity Fraud

Paternity fraud is a serious challenge to the legal establishment, even though it is not legally defined as a crime. Paternity fraud occurs when a woman identifies the wrong man as the father of her child. The man may believe that he is the father and ends up having to pay a substantial portion of his income in child support, until the child reaches adulthood. This often happens when a woman has an extra marital affair that results in a pregnancy. Often, women cover this up by naming their husband as the father. Paternity fraud usually takes place when the man does not doubt that he is the child’s father and is under the impression that he was the woman’s only sexual partner during their relationship or at the time of conception.

The consequences of this are far reaching, and affect not only the man, but also the child. The man is legally required to pay child support and can go to jail if he is unable to do so. The child can end up losing many means of support such as social security benefits, its inheritance, military benefits, and the knowledge of its paternal family history. Because paternity fraud is not generally recognized as a crime, it has become widespread and endemic. Read on to learn about the best recourses for responding to paternity fraud.

If you suspect that you are a victim of paternity fraud, the first course of action you should take is to seek expert legal advice. Your lawyer will be able to tell you what the best legal course of action will be. You should not pursue legal action before being properly advised and briefed by a competent lawyer who has experience in dealing with paternity and paternity fraud issues.

You should be aware that there is still not much precedent of men being compensated and relieved of financial fraud. In fact, men who are often clearly not the child’s father are still required by law to keep supporting it. This happens so often because the state has a vested interest in mothers naming their children’ fathers, so that the state does not need to support the child out of its own finances. Child support money is known to significantly swell federal bank balances.

The legal actions you can take can include DNA testing. DNA testing is a test of genetic material and can determine with more than 99% accuracy whether you are the child’s father or not. DNA testing is a tried and tested method of establishing a genetic link between a man and his alleged offspring. DNA testing is routinely available in labs throughout the country, but you may require the mother’s assent or a court’s order in order to be able to have it done, which can often be hard to obtain. This is why good legal counsel is of crucial in paternity fraud cases.

Recent legal developments have given defrauded men some reason to cheer. Many states are considering changing their antiquated paternity laws in light of new technologies such as DNA fingerprinting which are capable of determining paternity without any doubt. Courts now often require DNA testing before a man is required to shoulder the responsibility of providing for a child. Divorce cases commonly require DNA testing as a matter of course. You should be aware of all your legal options should the need arise, and therefore it is essential that you hire a good lawyer, one who is experienced and proficient in paternity fraud cases.

Responding to paternity fraud is difficult and your legal options can sometimes be limited, but with the right legal counsel, there is no reason you cannot overcome the fraud and even counter claim for damages.

The Facts About Online Divorce

When most people think of divorce they think of a stressful situation in which two spouses are on bad terms with one another. They are ready to take all their possessions and split them down the middle and have nothing to do with one another ever again. The unfortunate part of this scenario is that it is sometimes true. The fortunate part is that it this type of divorce only happens in a very small percentage of divorces.

Most divorces are actually amicable meaning both parties have agreed to terminate the marriage. They have also agreed on how to divide their property, possessions and have come to an agreement on child support and visitation. This makes things so much easier to put up with in court.

Now you may be wondering what this has to do with the facts about online divorce. The online divorce procedure requires the two spouses to have already agreed to how the division of all property and debts has been determined. Once this is done its just a matter of filling out a questionnaire to allow the Online Divorce Provider to draft the proper forms to take to the local court to be filed.

Here are the facts.

Will you still need to appear in court?

Most likely yes, but it’s not as bad as it may seem. Usually the court appearance consists of you answering a few questions about when and where you were married, when you separated and how long it’s been since you had cohabitation with one another.

Does your spouse need to appear in court?

The answer is no he/she doesn’t need to be there as long as either you have a waiver signed by your spouse agreeing to the terms of the Separation Agreement or you are unable to locate your spouse and the courts have put in an order of publication.

Are there other fees involved?

Yes. But don’t let that scare you. Once you have purchased your online divorce paperwork from the provider, you will need to also file those papers at your county clerk. It’s best to call your local county clerk for filing fees as they do vary from state to state.

How long does the process usually take?

Under regular circumstances your divorce will be final in about 4 weeks if you and your spouse have already agreed on everything. It then becomes just a matter of how long it takes to get your paperwork notarized. The actual length of time can vary depending on the work load of your local clerk. If everything is done in an expedited manor and the clerk workload is not too great, I have seen a divorce finalized in as little as 2 weeks.

These questions and more can be answered at Be sure to check out the Frequently Asked Questions for more in-depth information.

The Trademark Application Process and Costs (Detailed)

A United States trademark grants its owner the right to prevent others from using a confusingly similar mark in connection with similar goods or services. The cost of a trademark application can vary considerably depending on the existence of any similar marks.

The trademark application process moves through three stages:

Stage 1 – The Application

As a preliminary matter, trademark applicants have four options for trademark application depending on their particular circumstances:

1) Section 1(a) of the Lanham Act (the United States Trademark Act) allows application for applicants who have already made use of their mark in United States commerce (e.g., already doing business in the US).

2) Section 1(b) of the Lanham Act allows application for applicants who verify that they intent to use the mark in United States commerce within 1 year of publication on the National Register. Such application must be perfected within 1 year by submitting specimens to prove use of the mark in commerce. The purpose of a 1(b) application is for applicants who have not yet used the mark in the US to “lock” in their date of priority to the date of their 1(b) application — in other words, if another entity uses a similar mark after the applicant’s 1(b) application but before the date of perfection, the original applicant will be accorded priority as of the date of its 1(b) application.

3) Section 44(e) of the Lanham Act allows foreign applicants who already own a trademark registration in their foreign country of origin to register their mark in the US based on such foreign registration.

4) Section 44(d) of the Lanham Act allows foreign applicants to “lock” the day of priority for their mark to the day of their foreign trademark application. The practical results of this are the same as in the 1(b) application described above.

Applicants may apply under a combination of the above options. For example, they may apply under Section 1(a) if they have already used the mark in the US and they may also use Section 44(d) to lock their date of priority to the date of their potentially earlier foreign application.

Costs for Stage 1:

USPTO Fees: The United States Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO) charges a $325 filing fee for each class under which the applicant wishes to register their trademark. A “class” is a description of the type of goods or services with which the mark is associated. For example, is registered for Class 35 (advertising information) and Class 38 (interactive bulletin boards).

Attorney Fees: Most attorneys charge hourly for trademark work or otherwise charge a flat fee based on the estimate time it would take to complete the initial filing. The initial paperwork for a Stage 1 filing should take no longer than one hour. As explained below, it is not possible to estimate the time it would take to move an application through Stages 2-3.

Search Fees: The USPTO does not refund filing fees, thus prior to filing the application it is highly advisable to have your attorney conduct a search of the USPTO database to confirm that a registration or application for a similar mark does not already exist. The most advisable search method is to have the attorney engage a specialist service, like Thompson CompuMark, to perform a thorough search. Such services generally charge $600-800 for the search.

While most attorneys can perform the search for a lower fee, we feel it borders on malpractice not to urge the client to pursue the more thorough option.

Stage 2 – Office Actions

Once the application is filed, the USPTO will assign an Examiner to evaluate the proposed trademark and decide whether it meets the requirements for publication to the Official Gazette.

The USPTO will issue Office Actions, in the form of correspondence from the Examiner to the applicant, if the Examiner finds defects in the application. The most common and innocuous defects include improper or vague description of the goods and services associated with the mark or a vague description of the mark itself. Such defects can be remedied with a short and simple response to the Office Action.

A more serious Office Action arises if the Examiner finds the application to be confusingly similar to an already-existing trademark. While the chances of seeing this situation are practically non-existent if the applicant performed a thorough search of the USPTO database prior to applying, there is, unfortunately, no 100% guarantee.

At this stage, depending on how similar the existing mark is, and based on his attorney’s advice, the applicant may wish to dispute the examiner’s decision or to abandon the application.

Costs for Stage 2:

USPTO Fees: There are no USPTO fees for responding to Office Actions. There is a $100 per class filing fee to appeal the Examiner’s final decision if the applicant’s responses fail.

Attorney Fees: Attorneys charge an hourly rate for responding to Office Actions and, where applicable, for appealing adverse decisions.

Stage 3 – Publication to the Federal Register and Potential Opposition

Once the applicant successfully moves through Stage 2 by satisfying any problems the Examiner may have with the application (or by successfully appealing an Examiner’s adverse decision), the proposed trademark will be published in the Official Gazette to allow other trademark owners the opportunity to Oppose the mark in the event that they feel it is substantially similar to their registered mark or their unregistered mark for which they may have priority of use (e.g.., they used the mark in US commerce before the applicant used it or before the applicant established priority with his application).

If a trademark owner makes an opposition, the application will proceed to litigation between the Applicant and the Opposer before the Trademark Trial and Appeal Board (TTAB).

Costs for Stage 3:

USPTO Fees: There are no USPTO fees for Stage 3 other than any TTAB filing fees which may arise out of an Opposition litigation.

Attorney Fees: If the application is Opposed by another entity with a substantially similar mark, the application will proceed as a litigation. It is difficult to estimate the number of attorney’s hours such litigation will require. Moreover, additional costs of such litigation will include the costs of discovery to ascertain whether the marks are similar, whether the Opposer has priority, as well as any other remedies that applicant may have depending on the facts learned in discovery.

The total costs of such litigation can range in the tens of thousands of dollars and, as such, we advise our clients that litigation is always the option of last resort. If such a situation occurs, we help our clients minimize costs by vigorously pursuing a settlement with the Opposer whereby the Opposer would agree to a “concurrent” use of the mark in return for some set value of remuneration.


The foregoing provides a list of all of the possibilities in the best and worst case scenarios. In most cases, a trademark application will proceed to the Official Gazette without any Office Action (Stage 2) or any Opposition (Stage 3). As explained above, we always advise our clients to elect a thorough USPTO database search prior to filing the application because such a search is the best way to predict how the application will proceed.

Bike Lanes Prevent Injury and Reduce the Need for an Auto Accident Injury Lawyer

In cities across the United States, drivers may be noticing a narrow separate lane has been added on the side of the street. These designated bike lanes, sometimes marked by a symbol of a bicycle to denote their purpose, are preventing automobile-bicycle accidents across the nation and saving people money they would have spent on hospital bills and an auto accident injury lawyer.

Many people’s excuses for not making the healthier, more eco-friendly decision to ride a bike instead of a vehicle include issues with safety and not having a smooth, continuous path on which to ride. Many Americans who own bikes simply consider them recreational toys that are meant to be brought to the park to ride around for exercise.

However, the bicycle is slowly reclaiming its place as a viable transportation device. Thanks to the addition of bike lanes in many major cities, more people have been getting to and from work, school and the grocery on two wheels.

Studies have shown that the number of bike accidents decreases as the number of bicyclists on the road increases. The lanes encourage main road bicycling, which has proven to decrease automobile traffic. The greater presence of bicyclists forces those who do choose to drive automobiles to take the lanes seriously and to yield to the more fragile vehicle.

In the Netherlands, for example, the rate of automobile-on-bicycle accidents is about 26 times lower than that of the United States. This is true despite the fact that about 25 percent of their population commutes by bike, while only 1 percent of our population does so. Why? The Netherlands, though a much smaller area, contains over 18,000 miles of segregated bicycle lanes.

The lanes encourage more cycling and less driving, a change that is overall beneficial. More cycling and less driving means less traffic, less pollution, more exercise, more safety and less money one would potentially spend on gas, maintenance and an auto accident injury lawyer.

But some people have taken issue with the lanes. In New York, ironically one of the first U.S. cities to establish enforceable bike lanes, protesters argue that the lanes take away from their rights as motor vehicle operators by forcing them to share the road. Other arguments against the lanes include the fact that they take away precious curbside parking spots, run through loading zones originally designated for delivery trucks and sometimes actually cause more traffic because of the narrowed lanes.

However frustrating the adjustment period might be, studies have shown that equipping cities with bike-friendly roadways severely reduces instances of automobile-on-bicycle accidents and injuries. The protection of people’s lives and physical safety outweighs the minor Inconveniences posed by the lanes.

In the end, most drivers probably would prefer to suck it up and yield to bikers than to have to deal with an auto accident injury lawyer after accidentally knocking a cyclist off of a bicycle-unfriendly roadway.

About Whiplash Injury And Compensation Claims

Whiplash is one of the most common types of injury sustained when road traffic accidents occur. Whiplash is not a life threatening injury, but it can cause pain, discomfort, partial disability and may take a long time to make full recovery depending on the severity of the injury.

Whiplash injury can be described as a range of injuries to the neck. It occurs when the soft tissues in the neck and spine become stretched after the body is subjected to a sudden, forceful jerk, which mostly happens in car accidents, especially rear-end collisions. But, whiplash injuries can also occur as a result of sporting accidents and accidents at the workplace.

Symptoms Of Whiplash

Some of the most common symptoms of whiplash are headaches, stiffness in the neck, reduced neck movement, swelling around the neck area and pain in the shoulders and neck. The symptoms of whiplash usually take few days to fully develop and it may be essential to seek medical attention if you experience these symptoms following a road accident.

Other symptoms of whiplash may include tiredness, blurred vision, dizziness, inability to concentrate, memory loss and ringing in the ears.

In the most severe cases of whiplash injury, the victim may experience anxiety, depression, insomnia, stress and post-traumatic stress disorders.

Whiplash Injury Claim

If you have suffered whiplash injuries in an accident that was not your fault, you may be able to seek whiplash injury compensation. Following a successful whiplash injury claim, you may be eligible to recover compensation for the following:

– Injury, pain and trauma

– Lost income

– Medical expenses

– Prescription costs

– Cost of travelling

– Other financial losses

The best way to deal with a whiplash injury claim is with the help of experienced personal injury lawyers. The injury lawyer you choose to handle your claim can become your legal advisor and help you obtain what you rightfully deserve. Once you appoint an injury lawyer to act on your behalf, he will take care of the entire claims process.

It is quite logical that you shouldn’t pay for something that was not your fault. Why should you pay for medical expenses, treatment costs, vehicle repair costs and deal with pain and injuries when it was not your fault? This is the reason it is important to seek legal advice and consider pursuing an injury claim so that you are compensated for all your losses. With the help of expert No Win No Fee injury claim lawyers, you don’t even have to worry about funding your claim in any respect.

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