As of Today, US Law Enforcement Has New Hacking Powers

As of December 1, 2016, US law enforcement has gained new hacking powers thanks to changes to Rule 41 of the Federal Rules of Criminal Procedure that now simplify the process of getting warrants to hack into devices of US citizens and the citizens of other countries. The Rule 41 amendments had been proposed in 2014 by an advisory committee on criminal rules for the Judicial Conference of the United States. In April 2016, the United States Supreme Court, and … Continued

SCOTUS: Double Jeopardy Doesn’t Bar Retrial After Inconsistent Verdicts

The double jeopardy clause does not prevent the government from retrying defendants where the jury delivered inconsistent verdicts on related charges and the convictions were subsequently vacated by an unrelated error, the U.S. Supreme Court ruled today. If anything, a jury’s failure to rule consistently supports the need for a retrial, reasoned Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg, writing for the unanimous court. Arthur H. Geffen Attorney & Counselor at Law 1620 East Beltline Road Carrollton, TX 75006 972-242-8887 972-446-7976 fax … Continued

Dr. Seuss Enterprises sues over crowdfunded comic, ‘Oh, the Places You’ll Boldly Go!’

Dr. Seuss Enterprises has filed a trademark and copyright lawsuit over a crowdfunded book that is said to combine elements of Star Trek and Dr. Seuss. The federal suit (PDF), filed last Friday, says webcomics company ComicMix “unabashedly misappropriates” the intellectual property of Dr. Seuss Enterprises with its illustrated book, Oh the Places You’ll Boldly Go. The Hollywood Reporter covered the lawsuit. The book used Dr. Seuss’ illustration style, characters, prose and themes, the suit alleges. ComicMix had raised $30,000 … Continued

Holding Vacation Homes in Trust

A few years ago, Arizona accounting firm BeachFleischman helped a Tucson couple structure specialized trusts for both a ­primary residence and a California vacation home. Qualified ­personal residence trusts, or QPRTs, hold properties that can be transferred at a discounted value to children after a specified ­period of time. This both reduces the gift tax and removes the property from the estate. In this case, the two residences, worth a total of $4.3 million in 2009, can be transferred via … Continued