Tuesday, August 30, 2005

On-Line Defensive Driving Class Approved

The Delaware Insurance Commission has just approved an On-Line Defensive Driving course, and more are waiting in the wings.

The first to be approved, The On-Line Traffic School, Inc. involves a reasonable fee, an online course followed by an in-person final exam and verification of identification.

Then you can save 10% on your insurance! Well.... part of your insurance anyhow. What do you think about this? Do you feel that you can learn as much from an on-line course as you can from a live course? Will it encourage people to take this class that wouldn't have taken a class at all?

Friday, August 26, 2005

Celebrity Kitchen Outing

We recently experienced the Celebrity Kitchen in Wilmington. It was not just a dinner out. It was much more than that.

We really enjoyed the experience of learning cooking techniques, and gaining some insight behind the swinging kitchen doors. And we had foods in combinations that I never would have thought of on my own.

We were attending a session hosted by Chef Peter Gilmore, of Gilmore's. It was magnificent.

If you don't mind participating, you may want to check it out.

Saturday, August 20, 2005

Sweat Equity LLC Contributions

Small business owners should be sure to maintain the advice of relevant professionals in the field of accounting, taxes, and law.

One frequent problem that I see is that Sweat Equity LLC Investors don't take into account the potential tax treatment of their contribution. What difference can it make? Well, for one thing it can trigger self-employment tax. This can be big.

Be sure to plan your LLC contributions with a tax professional.

Wednesday, August 17, 2005

Widener in the News

While browsing potential law schools to apply to, I came across this article about Widener Law School. Widener has been nationally recognized by being honored with the American Bar Association School Award. This award was given due to Widener's superior ABA Law Student Division recruitment and participation efforts. Nearly, 60% of Widener Law School students are members of the ABA Law Student Division. Certainly this news sparked my interest in Widener where I hope to gain admission this upcoming fall.

-Posted by: Craig J. Springer, Paralegal

Friday, August 12, 2005

Copyright Battle Over Movie Clones

When I first saw the previews for this summer's big action/sci-fi movie, The Island, I thought that it looked like a retread of of the 1970's sci-fi classic, Logan's Run. But, apparently it is closer in many respects to the almost forgotten 1979 movie, The Clonus Horror. So close actually, that the producers of Clonus are suing the makers of The Island for copyright infringement.

I haven't seen either of the two movies in question (although the Mystery Science Theater 3000 version of Clonus sounds pretty familiar) but the producers of Clonus claim at 90 instances where the films are identical.

This should make for an interesting copyright infringement case if it ever makes its way to a courtroom.

Tuesday, August 02, 2005

Racial Incarceration Statistics, and the Race to Action

A recent article in the Wilmington News Journal by astute, Al Mascitti, discusses a study regarding differential incarceration rates in Delaware (PDF) amongst the races. I have read the study, and found it to be interesting and worthy of follow-up.

What is in the report on the study which seems to have been overlooked, is that we don't yet know the cause of the problem. The report recommends, and rightly so, that we should follow up with a study to see how the Truth In Sentencing Guidelines are being applied to defendants, and to see how defendants' previous criminal records fit into the picture.

Most of the commentary in the report itself, and that quoted by Mr. Mascitti from other speakers, would seem to have us draw unsubstantiated conclusions and run off and take some other action (although perhaps I misunderstand the suggestion).

I agree that the data suggests a problem and that we should work energetically to evaluate it further. It would be irresponsible and ineffective however, to take some other sort of direct action when we don't yet even know specifically what the problem is that we are attempting to fix.

UPDATE - In this Sunday's News Journal the author of the report, Thomas P. Eichler, speaks out on the topic. I think his comments are reasonable and on point, even if not empirically supported. What are your thoughts?

Elvis and the Law

As a big Elvis Presley fan, it's hard to pass up on posting a story about an Elvis memorabilia law suit. According to a Yahoo News story, a New York man is being sued for submitting an eBay bid on a car formerly owned by the King and then refusing to pay, claiming that his daughter submitted the bid by accident.

The suit, which was filed in a Philadelphia District Court, is asking for the price of the bid ($245,000) plus damages of $150,000. However, the seller has agreed to settle at a smaller figure if the buyer issues an apology.

While most people know that Elvis was a Cadillac fan, this dispute revolves around a 1969 Mercedes. When I visted Graceland earlier this year, one of the more surprising exhibits was Elvis' car collection. Dozens of cars that he owned, including a few Cadillacs, were on display in a room the size of an airplane hanger. Also on display were go carts, dune buggys, and golf carts that Elvis and his buddies would race around the fields behind Graceland. My favorite of the lot was a purple convertible Cadillac that seemed about fifty feet long. I couldn't even imagine trying to parallel park that monster.

Hopefully, this case will stay in the news so that we can follow its progess.