Coeur d'Alene Law Firm Blog

jail

WHAT IS A WITHHELD JUDGMENT?

When is an Idaho conviction not really a conviction? This occurs when the defendant pleads guilty and receives a “Withheld Judgment.” When this occurs, the court withholds entering a formal judgment of conviction. The defendant, who may or may not be ordered to serve jail time, is ordered to satisfy certain conditions and complete a period of probationary good conduct. … Learn More

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WHAT IS ADVERSE POSSESSION IN IDAHO?

Normally a change in the ownership of land is accomplished by signing a deed. However, an owner of real estate can lose some or all of his property by a process called Adverse Possession. This occurs when another person exercises dominion and control over the land, without protest from the true landowner, and this dominion and control lasts more than … Learn More

GPS-Under-Car_Jon-SnyderWired

SUPREME COURT SAYS POLICE CAN’T USE GPS TRACKER WITHOUT SEARCH WARRANT

Police often are in a situation where they suspect that a person is involved in criminal activity, yet don’t have the evidence to prove it. One way for the police to gather evidence is to follow that person to see if he makes contact with other individuals involved in criminal activity. In our automobile age, a GPS tracker has been … Learn More

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LAWSUIT TO STOP A NUISANCE

Among the legal remedies available to Idaho residents is a lawsuit to abate (lessen or stop) a nuisance. Idaho Code Section 52-111 defines a nuisance as “anything which is injurious to health or morals, or indecent, or offensive to the senses, or an obstruction to the free use of property, so as to interfere with the comfortable enjoyment of life … Learn More

dog

RECOVERING DAMAGES FOR THE LOSS OF A PET

The death of a dog, cat or other pet can be heartbreaking, especially if the loss was caused by another’s carelessness or negligence.  Taking the wrongdoer to court can produce disappointing results because of the legal tradition which only permits a judge or jury to award money damages for the “fair market value” of the pet.  Unless the pet was … Learn More

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INSANITY DEFENSE IN IDAHO CRIMINAL CASES

Traditionally, a criminal defendant who was suffering from a serious mental disorder at the time of the alleged crime could enter a plea of Not Guilty by reason of insanity.  However, in 1982, Idaho abolished the insanity defense.  I.C. § 18-207(1) states: “Mental condition shall not be a defense to any charge of criminal conduct.” This law also provides that … Learn More

marijuana

IDAHO’S FREEDOM OF RELIGION LAW

In addition to protections by provided by the United States Constitution, Idaho Statute 73-402 provides additional protection to freedom of religion.  This statute contains the following language: “(1) Free exercise of religion is a fundamental right that applies in this state, even if laws, rules or other government actions are facially neutral. (2) Except as provided in subsection (3) of … Learn More

deed

WHAT IS TITLE INSURANCE?

For most types of property, mere physical possession can be assurance of ownership.  For example, items of personal property such as jewelry, art, and clothing are owned merely by physically possessing them.  Such is not the case for real estate. Over a number of years, the title to real estate can pass from seller to buyer to new buyer dozens … Learn More

slander

$12 Million Verdict in Internet Defamation Case

An Arizona jury has awarded two Scottsdale physicians a $12 Million verdict against a former patient they accused of defaming them on the Internet.  The Maricopa County jury awarded the money to Dr. Albert Carlotti and his wife, Dr. Michelle Cabret-Carlotti. The verdict was against Scottsdale jazz singer Sherry Patta, who had written Internet postings accusing the physicians of wrongful … Learn More

deposition

WHAT HAPPENS IN A DEPOSITION?

Many years ago “trial by ambush” was often the norm. Attorneys arrived at the first day of a trial not sure exactly what the other side was going to use as evidence in a case. All of this changed in the 1950s, with the introduction of the modern rules of civil procedure. Pretrial “discovery” rules now enable each side in … Learn More