July 2022

Question: Is it legal to take your child on a long vacation when school is in session?

Written by , Posted in Family Law

Answer: Each U.S. state has truancy laws that vary in their strictness. Truancy means absent from school without permission.

For example, in California, all children between the ages of six and eighteen are required to attend public school, with exceptions for those who are homeschooled, attend private school, or who have special needs. Parents can be fined up to $2,500 and may face up to one year in jail if they permit their child to miss ten percent or more of school days. But only in the most chronic cases will school officials initiate legal action against a student or parents.

But many school districts have policies specifically designed to allow parents to take children out of school for longer family vacations. In some school districts, if a child will be absent for 5-15 days, parents may request Short Term Limited Independent Study. The teacher will then provide academic assignments for the student to complete while on vacation. After vacation, all completed work must be returned in order to receive academic credit. Remember that policies vary widely by school district and state, so contact your school first.




November 2015

Question: Is It Legal to let your spouse drive drunk?

Written by , Posted in Criminal Law


Assuming you do not serve a spouse to the point of intoxication and do not hand them the keys to the car when walking out the door intoxicated, as well as not giving them permission to drive your car if you know their driver’s license is suspended from a DUI, you are probably safe with one exception: minors in your care or custody- you may have a duty to object and/or or report any such child endangerment.

Additional note from attorney: “Bottom line is you’re most likely NOT legally responsible, however you could be held financially responsible if your spouse were to seriously injure someone. I once had a client that had DUI after DUI. His wife divorced him but they still remained in a relationship. She stated the divorce was merely to protect her from financial disaster.”




May 2014

Question: Is it legal to fly the flag upside down?

Written by , Posted in Constitutional Law


An individual has the right to fly an American flag upside down. The First Amendment of our Constitution not only ensures freedom of speech in the traditional sense, but also protects conduct, symbols, and non-verbal speech that convey an idea or a particularized message. Since 1989, the Supreme Court has acknowledged that conduct pertaining to the flag, including flag burning, is expressive conduct within the ambit of First Amendment protection. Texas v. Johnson, 491 U.S. 397 , 404-6 (1989). As recently as four months ago, in Congine v. Village of Crivitz, the United States District Court for the Eastern District of Wisconsin extended citizens’ expressive rights by holding that it is a constitutional violation to forbid the public display of an upside down American flag.

It is uncertain whether or not the Supreme Court will weigh in on the “upside down flag” issue. Nevertheless, given that the Supreme Court continuously upholds expressive conduct regarding displays of the American flag, it is likely that it will agree with Wisconsin District




April 2014

Question: Is it legal to ship a gun?

Written by , Posted in Firearm Law


Yes.  It is legal to ship a gun.  However, the devil is in the details.  First, a gun can only be shipped to the holder of a valid Federal Firearms License.  The sender, however, is not required to have a valid Federal Firearms License.  Second, the sender must not be otherwise prohibited from owning a gun.  If you are prohibited from owning a gun, you cannot ship a gun.  Third, the sender must also notify the shipping company that the package contains a gun.  Ammunition cannot be shipped with the gun.   You should also check with the different shipping companies to determine their internal policies and procedures.




September 2013

Question: Is it legal to fly the confederate flag?

Written by , Posted in Constitutional Law, Statutory Law


The freedom of speech protection provided by the First Amendment to the U.S. Constitution allows people to fly the confederate flag on their own property. However, the Government is not required to permit all forms of speech on public property. The legality of flying a confederate flag in public areas depends upon whether the area is designated as a public forum, limited public forum, or nonpublic forum.
Traditional public forums include public streets, sidewalks, and parks, while limited or designated public forums include public auditoriums or theaters. The Government may restrict speech in these forums if the restriction is narrowly tailored to achieve a compelling government interest. Nonpublic forums include areas such as airports and cemeteries; the Government is allowed to restrict speech in nonpublic forums so long as the restriction is reasonable and not an effort to suppress expression because public officials oppose the speaker’s view.

Multiple courts have upheld restrictions prohibiting confederate flags from being displayed in cemeteries, while courts in some states (such as South Carolina and Alabama) have approved the display of the confederate flag atop state buildings. Although a person is free to fly a confederate flag at their own home, one could potentially be restricted from doing so in a public place.


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