Monday, January 31, 2011

Boise Divorce Attorney Discusses Grounds for Divorce

As a Boise Divorce Attorney I often get questions about the grounds for divorce. Some people seek divorce because they are generally unhappy with their spouse and want out of the marriage. Other people have very specific reasons for seeking divorce and don't want their divorce order to read, "irreconcilable differences". Divorce lawyers help clients understand what the grounds for divorce are and help them understand which ground they should claim and why. Attorneys in Idaho use Idaho Code section 32-603 which provides the grounds for divorce. They are adultery, extreme cruelty, willful desertion, willful neglect, habitual intemperance, felony conviction, insanity and irreconcilable differences.

The first seven are called "for cause". This is because there is a specific fact or set of facts which support the claim. "For cause" divorce can be denied if the evidence does not support the claim. Irreconcilable difference is a catch all and there needs to be no specific reason to claim this grounds for divorce. As a Boise Divorce Lawyer I can tell you that the majority of divorce claims are brought on the grounds of irreconcilable differences. That is not to say that you shouldn't claim "adultery" or "neglect" if you have suffered from these. If you want to claim a "for cause" reason for divorce you should speak with an attorney who can explain to you what evidence is necessary to support that claim.

Friday, January 28, 2011

Boise DUI Lawyer Talks About Lost BAC Results

Believe it or not, evidence gets lost. Blood alcohol concentrations are key evidence for prosecutors. As a Boise DUI Lawyer, I feel it is important to challenge a DUI on a variety of grounds but especially if the prosecutor or the police have lost your BAC. Also, as a Boise DUI Lawyer I think that if your BAC has gone missing and then suddenly reappears, that you have a good challenge to the chain of custody. If your BAC was missing and then comes back, who knows what happened to it, who had control of it and what possible alteration could have been made to it while it was gone. If you are charged with a DUI, make certain your attorney looks for evidenciary challenges such as these. A lost BAC could mean the difference between a DUI and a lesser charge.

If you need more information on DUI please also visit

Wednesday, January 26, 2011

Boise Criminal Attorney Discusses the Difference Between Assault and Battery

As a Boise Criminal Attorney I often get asked what the difference between assault and battery is. Assault as defined by the Idaho Code is when a person has the ability and tries to harm another or a person intentionally threatens to do harm, coupled with the ability to do that harm. Battery is the unlawful use of force or violence against another, actual, intentional and unlawful touching of another or intentionally causing bodily harm to another.

So what does all that mean? To lawyers and to attorneys and to you it means the difference between up to a $1000 fine and/or up to 3 months in jail (assault) and up to a $1000 fine and/or up to six months in jail (battery), unless you commit battery against a pregnant woman. If you batter a pregnant woman (you have to know she is pregnant) then you can be put in jail for up to one year.

To lawyers and attorneys it also means, did you touch the person or not? Assault is the threat of harm and battery is the actual touching. As a Boise Criminal Attorney people often ask me why they have been charged with both crimes. Assault is the lessor offense and if you have actually unlawfully touched another you will be charged with both crimes just in case the evidence of the battery is not sufficient to convict you.

Sunday, January 23, 2011

Boise Divorce Attorney Talks About Community Property and Lottery Winnings

In today's news there was a story about a northern Idaho woman who won $190 million in a lottery jackpot. The woman was separated from her husband but had never gotten a divorce. As a Boise Divorce Attorney the question I see is, "are the lottery winnings community property?".

While there is not case on point in Idaho, Idaho Code 32-606 gives willful desertion as a grounds for divorce. In Idaho, however, you must file for divorce and actually go through a divorce proceeding to be divorced. Also, in Idaho, as long as you are married, your income is community property and anything you purchase with your money is community property. On the other hand, there is an Idaho Statute, Idaho Code 32-909, which has been determined to be unconstitutional presumably because of equal protection reasons, which states that the earnings of a wife living separate from her husband are her separate property. While the statute has been declared unconstitutional it has not been repealed.

As a Boise Divorce Attorney I see this case as one of those murky areas where there is no smoking gun, there is no black and white. While the law seems to say that the lottery winnings are community property, equity would say that the husband should have no claim to the money.

With Holly Lahti's new found wealth she certainly has the resources to pursue any claim her husband makes against her.

Pat Kershisnik is a local Boise Divorce Attorney. This blog is also available at at Law-in-the-news.

Saturday, January 22, 2011

Boise DUI Lawyer Talks About Aggravated Driving Under the Influence

As a Boise DUI Lawyer I feel one of the saddest parts of my job is when someone is charged with aggravated driving under the influence. This is a difficult charge because what it means is that someone was driving under the influence of alcohol, drugs or other intoxicating substance and caused great bodily harm, permanent disability or permanent disfigurement to another.

The penalty for aggravated driving under the influence is very serious. This is a felony charge. You can be sentenced to prison for up to 15 years and ordered to pay a fine of up to $5,000. In addition, you will lose your license, beginning upon your release, for up to five years. You will also be ordered to pay restitution.

If that weren't enough, Idaho law allows any evidence of your conviction to be used in a civil proceeding against you. A "conviction" for the purposes of this code section not only includes if you are found guilty but if you plea or get a withheld judgment.

If you need to speak to a Boise DUI Lawyer call or an Idaho Criminal Attorney, (208) 472-2383 or visit us on the web at or

Thursday, January 20, 2011

Boise Attorney Discusses Filing a DBA and Registering a Small Business in Idaho

As a Small Business Attorney in Boise I often get questions about DBAs in Idaho. If you have a small business or a large business for that matter and you operate your business with an assumed name you are required to file a DBA with the Secretary of State's office. You must do this before you start operating your small business.

You must also decide what legal status your business will be. Many small business owners choose to run their businesses as an LLC (limited liability company). You can also choose to operate your small business as a sole proprietorship, partnership, a LLP (limited liability partnership), limited partnership, a corporation, an S corporation, a C corporation, a non-profit corporation, a professional services corporation, or a PLLC (professional limited liability company.)

How you choose to register your small business will affect your liability as a small business and your tax consequences.

If you open a small business with employees or your small business has retail sales, you must also register with the Idaho Tax Commission, the Idaho Department of Labor and the Idaho Industrial Commission.

If you need to speak to a small business attorney in Boise call (208) 472-2383 or visit for more information.

Tuesday, January 18, 2011

Boise Divorce Attorneys Discussess Temporary Orders

As a Boise Divorce Attorney clients often ask me about temporary orders. Specifically, people often ask if they can ask for something different than what they already have. Custody and visitation, for example, are a big area where parties to a divorce seek to establish an order giving them better visitation or more custody than the status quo. If you are a parent who has stayed at home with your child and you have provided the daily care of that child, of course that is what you would ask for in temporary orders. In the converse, the other party might want to take the opportunity to bring up past issues of things like anger, or laziness or the like, to try to get more visitation.

Judges do not like this. In general, temporary orders will preserve the status quo. If you bring up an argument such as you fear for the children because of the other parent's anger, but that parent has had those anger issues all along, the judge will see your desire to change the status quo as an act done in spite.

Child custody and the determination of it has so much to do with stability and continuity. Judges do not like to mess with stability and continuity in child custody cases.

If you are seeking a divorce or child custody and you need to speak to a Boise Divorce Attorney
please call, (208) 472-2383 or visit us at or

Monday, January 17, 2011

Abandonment and Non-Support is a Crime in Idaho

Both as a Boise Divorce Attorney and an Idaho Criminal Attorney I often am asked what can be done when a parent abandons his or her children. Abandonment of a child under 18 years of age is a crime in Idaho. What exactly constitutes abandonment in Idaho?

Idaho Code 18-401 states that abandonment is when one intentionally and willfully fails to provide a child with the necessary food, clothing, shelter or medical care. Abandonment is a felony and is punishable by up to a $500 fine or up to 14 years in prison or both.

Although it is a crime in Idaho it is not regularly pursued. People often feel that if a parent fails to have anything to do with the child then it is better for them to be out of their life anyway. It is also often the case that the abandoning party claims that the other parent prevented them from having contact with their child.

To pursue a case of abandonment it would be important to provide evidence showing that the other parent was not prevented from making contact and that no support was offered.

This code section also applies to abandonment and non-support of your spouse. If you intentionally and willfully leave your spouse in a destitute condition, when you yourself have the means to support yourself and your spouse or if you willfully refuse or neglect to provide your spouse with the necessary food, clothing, shelter or medical care you can be found to have abandoned your spouse or found to have failed to support them. Unlike abandonment of a child, this particular form of abandonment is dependent upon the spouse's behavior. You can be justified in abandoning your spouse if your spouse's misconduct forces you or warrants such behavior.

If you need to speak to a Boise Divorce Attorney or an Idaho Criminal Attorney call (208) 472-2383 or visit or

Wednesday, January 12, 2011

Boise Divorce Attorney Talks About Alimony

As a Boise Divorce Attorney I often hear from clients that they would like to pursue alimony as a condition of their divorce. Alimony is more commonly referred to as spousal support these days. While a divorce order can include spousal support, it is not a very common order in Idaho.

Idaho Code 32-705 provides for spousal support but it is a very limited scope. If you can show that you do not have enough property with which to support yourself and you cannot support yourself through employment, an Idaho court may order alimony. In general, however, it is for a limited duration.

The concept of alimony was created to protect women after a divorce because historically women did not work, nor did they have the necessary training to enter the work world. Today, however, because women are an integral part of the work world, to presume a woman could not support herself would not only be condescending, but it would be flat out wrong.

Generally, if temporary support is ordered, an Idaho judge will allow them to continue until the person seeking support has gotten job training or completed their education and then the orders will terminate.

If you need to speak to a Boise Divorce Attorney about alimony or any other family law issue, please call (208)472-2383 or visit us on the web at

Tuesday, January 11, 2011

Boise Divorce Attorney Discusses a Bifurcated Divorce

As a Boise Divorce Attorney I often hear from people who they wish there was a way to get a divorce as far as their marriage but without actually dividing the property and finances or determining custody immediately.

There is something in Idaho known as a bifurcated divorce. This allows the parties to terminate their marriage and have their property and custody issues heard at a later point. There can be many reasons for doing this. One example of why you might seek a bifurcated divorce is because one spouse wants to get remarried right away. You could also ask for a bifurcated divorce if you wanted to file your taxes as an individual instead of filing jointly. If you are business partners and you have community property tied up into your business or perhaps convoluted loans, bifurcating your divorce might also be an option for you. As a Boise Divorce Attorney, I sometimes also suggest a bifurcated divorce when you need to separate your finances but because of convoluted property or custody issues a full divorce trial can't be heard until a time in the future and you might suffer financial harm if there is not the bifurcated divorce.

If you need to speak to a Boise Divorce Attorney call (208)472-2383 or visit us on the web at

Thursday, January 6, 2011

Boise Divorce Attorney Discusses Domestic Violence

Today's headlines describe the horrors of domestic violence. As a Boise Divorce Attorney I regularly have to deal with the issues associated with domestic violence. Idaho law provides for protection orders to protect people in domestic relationships from violence at the hand of their partner.

One of the services I provide as a Boise Divorce Attorney in domestic violence situations is to file a motion for an ex parte temporary protection order. If you can show that you will suffer irreparable harm if a restraining order is not issued the court will order a temporary order without the other party being present. The order cannot exceed 14 days. After or before the 14 days a full hearing is held and the party against whom the retraining order was issued has an opportunity to cross examine the moving party and provide witnesses and testimony.

The temporary ex parte protection order protects individuals by preventing them from entering their residence or interfering with custody. The protection order gives them grounds to call the police before harm can be perpetrated against them.

While I believe in the value of the ex parte protection order, as a Boise Divorce Attorney I have also seen it misused. I have seen it misused as a means get back at the other party, to interfere with custody or to try and make the other party look bad. It is for these reasons that the ex parte protection order cannot last for more than 14 days. In addition, Idaho law allows for a motion to shorten time which allows the accused party the opportunity to have the hearing heard earlier and have the opportunity to present their evidence which they believe proves their innocence.

If you need to speak with a Boise Divorce Attorney or need advice or representation for domestic violence, divorce or other custody issues, call (208) 472-2383 or visit for more information.

Monday, January 3, 2011

Boise DUI Lawyer Discusses Breathalyzer

As a Boise DUI Lawyer part of my job is to make certain that my clients are not convicted of a crime when their rights have been violated. Part of the evidence that goes into a DUI conviction in Idaho is evidence of a BAC of .08 or greater as measured by a breathalyzer. There are many ways to challenge a breathalyzer reading but today I am going to discuss the defense of burping.

As a Boise DUI Lawyer burping is my favorite defense. I know it sounds silly that you could throw a DUI out in Idaho with the defense of burping. It is true, however. If you burped within 15 minutes of blowing you can challenge the BAC reading on the breathalyzer. It all has to do with the way the breathalyzer works and how it reads the concentration of alcohol in your system.

If you are charged with a DUI in Idaho make certain you tell your Boise DUI Lawyer if you burped before you blew.

For more information about DUI in Idaho or to schedule an appointment with a Boise DUI Lawyer please visit or call (208) 472-2383 today.