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August 31, 2009

Wireless Password: bijou

IMG_1851.JPGThe wireless password for the week of August 31, 2009 is bijou.

More information about wireless access in Utah's courthouses.

August 28, 2009

House Health Care Reform Bill Available Online

fdpllogo.jpgHealth Care Reform has been everywhere in the news lately. No matter what your opinion is on the subject, you can read the full bill online at GPO Access. H.R. 3200, America's Affordable Health Choices Act of 2009, is the official text of the health care reform bill.

Don't want to download and read the entire 1,017 page PDF document? You can browse and read specific sections at THOMAS.

If you're more interested in the news surrounding the bill, OpenCongress.org lets you follow news and blog postings about the bill from diverse sources.

August 26, 2009

Utah Court of Appeals Briefs

The library has received additional Court of Appeal briefs. The docket numbers range from 20070663 to 20080477 (list not inclusive).
If you're looking for a specific brief, contact the library by phone (801-238-7990) or email to make sure we have it. If you can't come in to make copies yourself, we offer a document delivery service for 25¢ per page and will scan the briefs and email them to you.

August 25, 2009

How to Read a Legal Opinion

"How to Read a Legal Opinion" was written for new law students, but is a great tool for anyone who is new to reading court opinions because it guides you through all the important pieces, from caption to disposition. The author, Orin Kerr, is a law professor at the George Washington University Law School.

The article was published in The Green Bag, "an entertaining journal of law." Archived articles are available online, dating back to Winter 2008. Besides publishing articles that are much less serious than the average legal journal, the Green Bag is known for giving away bobbleheads of U.S. Supreme Court Justices to some of its subscribers. The most recent bobblehead created by the Green Bag was Justice Souter.

August 24, 2009

Wireless Password: admit

IMG_1851.JPGThe wireless password for the week of August 24, 2009 is admit.

More information about wireless access in Utah's courthouses.

August 21, 2009

Registering Foreign Orders

If you have a child support or child custody court order from another state and you want to either enforce or modify that order in Utah, you must first register that order with an appropriate Utah court. This process is often referred to as "registering a foreign order."

Instructions and forms to register foreign child support and child custody orders are now available on the Utah State Courts website at http://www.utcourts.gov/howto/family/foreign_order.

Modifying Child Support Orders

Forms to ask the court to modify a child support order are now available on the Utah State Courts website at http://www.utcourts.gov/howto/family/modification/child_support/. The site also provides information on how to use the forms and how to calculate child support amounts.

For help with calculating child support, you can use the online calculator or stand-alone worksheets.

August 20, 2009

September Classes

columnsOur September class list is here!

Small Claims Basics
Thursday, 9/10, 4:30-6:30 p.m.
Topics include the small claims process, Rules of Small Claims Procedure, small claims forms, an overview of collecting a judgment and appealing a small claims case.

Resources for People Representing Themselves in Utah's State Courts
Friday, 9/11, 3:30-4:30 p.m.
Introduces the resources available for people representing themselves in court, including how to find an attorney, legal clinics, forms, the Online Court Assistance Program and other resources. The presentation will be followed by a tour of the Utah State Law Library introducing the print and electronic resources available.

Guardianship of a Minor Basics
Thursday, 9/17, 4:30-6:30 p.m.
Topics include who can be a guardian, why you might want a guardianship, the difference between a guardianship and conservatorship, the rights and responsibilities of a guardian, how to request a guardianship appointment, and how to terminate a guardianship appointment

Landlord-Tenant Basics
Thursday, 9/24, 4:30-6:30 p.m.
Basic rights and responsibilities of both landlords and tenants, as well as provide a description of the eviction process.

All classes are held in the Matheson Courthouse in Salt Lake City.

To register for these free classes call 801-238-7990 or email library@email.utcourts.gov.

August 17, 2009

Report Bankruptcy Fraud & Foreclosure Scams

If you suspect you are the victim of bankruptcy or foreclosure fraud, you can report the suspected business or person to the Executive Office for U.S. Trustees.

For suspected bankruptcy fraud cases, the U.S. Trustee Program requests that you provide as much information as possible, including:
"* Name and address of the person or business you are reporting.
* The name of the bankruptcy case, case number, and the location of where the case was filed.
* Any identifying information you may have regarding the individual or the business.
* A brief description of the alleged fraud, including how you became aware of the fraud and when the fraud took place. Please include all supporting documentation.
* Identify the type of asset that was concealed and its estimated dollar value, or the amount of any unreported income, undervalued asset, or other omitted asset or claim.
* Your name, address, telephone number, and email address. You are not required to identify yourself, though it is often helpful to do so if questions arise."

Additionally, the U.S. Trustee Program warns people faced with foreclosure to proceed carefully if a person or business:
"* Calls itself a "mortgage consultant," "foreclosure service," or similar name.
* Contacts or advertises to people whose homes are listed for foreclosure.
* Collects a fee before it provides services to you.
* Tells you to make your home mortgage payments directly to the individual or company.
* Tells you to transfer your property deed or title to the individual or company."

For more information and to report suspicions of fraud, contact the local U.S. Trustee office by phone at 801-524-5734 or by email.

Wireless Password: zebra

IMG_1851.JPGThe wireless password for the week of August 17, 2009 is zebra.

More information about wireless access in Utah's courthouses.

August 13, 2009

More Supreme Court Briefs

The library has received Supreme Court briefs for appeals and petitions filed in 2007. The docket numbers range from 20070009 to 20071015 (list not inclusive).
If you're looking for a specific brief, contact the library by phone (801-238-7990) or email to make sure we have it. If you can't come in to make copies yourself, we offer a document delivery service for 25¢ per page and we'll scan the briefs and email them to you.

Free Upcoming Consumer Information Class

small_claims.jpgIf you're in the Salt Lake City area, the AAA Fair Credit Foundation is offering a free seminar on Avoiding Predatory Lending Products on Wednesday, August 19th, from 6:00 to 7:00 p.m. It will be held at the Foundation's office at 230 West 200 South, Suite 3104. The class will teach how to identify and avoid predatory lending products.

Space is limited and registration is required. Visit the event registration page to reserve your spot for this class. The Foundation updates an online calendar of events, so keep your eye on this page for future class dates and times.

August 12, 2009

New Governor, New Websites

Utah has a new governor: Gary R. Herbert was sworn in yesterday (8/11), replacing Gov. Jon Huntsman, who resigned office to become U.S. Ambassador to China.

If you are looking for information about the new governor or other new offices, check out these new websites:
* The Governor's website at http://www.utah.gov/governor/index.html
* The Lt. Governor's website at http://www.utah.gov/ltgovernor/
* The First Lady's website at at http://firstlady.utah.gov/.

If you're interested in Ambassador Huntsman's work in China, check out the U.S. Department of State's website on China.

August 10, 2009

Learn About the National Labor Relations Board

NLRB PAGE.JPGEver wonder what the National Labor Relations Board does? It's the federal agency that handles disputes related to the National Labor Relations Act, including the rights of both employers and employees. You can learn about workplace rights, case procedures, and file a complaint or petition against an employer or union online.

The NLRB has created two new videos to help the public learn more about the organization and its website features. The first, a Site Tour, helps people learn about the organization and what the website offers, such as filing case documents online. The second, Using CiteNet, instructs people in how to search the Classified Index of NLRB Board Decisions by unique subject heading, digest, or case number.

The Utah State Law Library has print volumes of National Labor Relations Board decisions, which we receive as a Federal Depository Library, spanning from 1942 to 2008. If you can't come into the library, you can browse volumes online and read any full text opinion from 1936-present.

Wireless Password: years

IMG_1851.JPGThe wireless password for the week of August 10, 2009 is years.

More information about wireless access in Utah's courthouses.

August 08, 2009

Annulment Law in Utah

The Utah State Courts' web page on Getting a Divorce in Utah provides information about the difference between divorce and annulment, and points out that there are both statutory and common law reasons why the court may grant the annulment.

Note that annulment laws differ from state to state. You must consult the laws of Utah to determine if you meet any of the criteria for annulment. Even if any or all of the grounds for annulment exist, it is still in the judge's discretion whether or not to grant the annulment.

The grounds for annulment include:
* Where the marriage is prohibited or void under Title 30, Chapter 1, Section 2, which deals with age requirements, prior marriages and divorces, and persons of the same sex.
* Where the marriage is incestuous, and therefore void.
* Common law grounds include fraud, misrepresentation, and failure to consummate the marriage.

Utah laws make no mention of a minimum or maximum amount of time for a marriage to have existed in order to petition the court for an annulment.

At this time, no Court-approved annulment paper work is available. If you find sample pleadings online, you should consult the Rules of Civil Procedure to ensure your documents conform to Court Rules. You should also consider consulting with an attorney, whether at a free legal clinic or through paid representation.

August 06, 2009

Utah #1 in Volunteerism

According to the Corporation for National and Community Service, Utah has the highest rate of volunteerism in the country for 2008.

The Utah Commission on Volunteers website provides information about hundreds of ways you can volunteer.

The Utah State Courts offer several volunteer opportunities including the Court Appointed Special Advocate (CASA) program, the Village Project, and Juvenile Court Restorative Dialogue programs.

Help keep Utah #1 - volunteer!

August 04, 2009

FTC Consumer Alert: Debts of Deceased Relatives

Foreclosure-Invoices.JPGThe Federal Trade Commission recently released a consumer alert to help people who may be concerned about debts of deceased relatives, and whether or not they are responsible for those debts.

Paying the Debts of a Deceased Relative: Who Is Responsible? explains a surviving relative's basic rights under the Fair Debt Collection Practices Act, including what you should do if a debt collector calls about a deceased relative's debts.

For more consumer information about debt collections, visit the FTC's consumer facts page on credit and loans.

August 03, 2009

Utah.gov Rated a Top Government Website


A report this week from Government Computer News has declared the official State of Utah website one of ten exemplary online government websites for its aesthetic design, use of Web 2.0 tools like Twitter and blogging, and easy-to-navigate content.

If you haven't had a chance to see the redesigned State of Utah website, be sure to check out some of the unique features such as the online services directory, the business information center, and postings aggregated from Utah government and city blogs, including our own State Law Library blog. The 2008 U.S. States E-Governance Report consistently ranks Utah in the top ten state websites for usability, content, and privacy.

Read the entire Government Computer News report to learn more about Utah.gov's achievements and other great government websites.

Wireless Password: xeric

IMG_1851.JPGThe wireless password for the week of August 3, 2009 is xeric.

More information about wireless access in Utah's courthouses.