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Showing content with the highest reputation since 05/15/2012 in all areas

  1. 2 points


    Good question. But I think the "huge ass" part of the phrase refers to the size of the bowl. Like in "That's a huge ass Cadillac you're driving."
  2. 2 points

    HAVE to show I.D.?

    No. Read this: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Stop_and_identify_statutes But how would you know what the officer suspects or doesn't suspect? Answer: You don't. You could resemble somebody who just robbed a store around the corner. You could end up on the ground with your face rubbing the pavement while you are being handcuffed and then you get to argue the officer's behavior in court long after the damage has been done. If an officer stops you while you are innocently just walking down the street, don't be one of those "I got rights" people. He may have a reason for asking you for ID that you don't know about and I don't see any harm in providing it and then being sent on your way if all is well. If your question is based on something that actually happened to you then give us the details so our comments might be helpful instead of meaninglessly speculative.
  3. 2 points


    Let's keep on track with the subject at hand, everyone. You can disagree without dwelling at length on the extent of your disagreement with each other. I've removed the 'extraneous' posts.
  4. 2 points


    Are you working now? Are you living on your own? Did a court grant guardianship of your daughter to your parents or was this an informal agreement? Your parents have raised your daughter, and understandably they have a bond with her and they will almost certainly fight your efforts to get your daughter back. You will need to demonstrate that you are able to provide for your daughter by establishing that you have a stable work history and housing arrangements. If you are working, you will have to have a plan in place for her care while you are working. I'm not sure why you are even mentioning having another child when it appears you can hardly care for yourself, let alone two children. You do need to retain an attorney for assistance with this. Check with Legal Aid or your State Bar's Lawyer Referral program. They should have a program that would allow you to meet with an attorney one time for no fee or a very nominal fee.
  5. 2 points
    Don't believe everything you see on the Internet, but believe this: In every state in the US, in matters of custody, child support, and parental rights, the court's paramount consideration is the best interest of the child. In the eyes of the law, it's considered in the child's interest to have two parents. For this reason the courts require a compelling reason to terminate one's parental rights and obligations, and will do so only under highly unusual circumstances. The two circumstances that come ready to mind are first, that another person is willing to step forward and assume all parental rights and responsibilities in place of the biological parent in a valid adoption procedure, and second, the biological parent, by his or her actions constitute a credible threat to the child's health and/or safety. You don't say anything about why your child's biological father's rights were terminated previously, or even how you know that statement to be true, so I can't comment on that. I can only say that based on the information you provide in your post, the odds of the court's granting termination of his rights and responsibilities with respect to your child, absent an adoption, are slim to none. As for his refusal (or inability) to pay child support owed to you, there are legal tools available to you to enforce collection. A local family law attorney can explain how New York's laws apply to your particular circumstances and help you get started with the process. Good luck!
  6. 2 points

    Executor vs Executor

    No will comes into play until it is admitted to probate by the court. If one will was admitted and then a later will is located, then the newly named executor would notify the existing executor as well as all the beneficiaries or potential beneficiaries by serving them with a copy of his petition to admit the second will to probate and be appointed executor. Until the court rules, the second executor has no power to do anything.
  7. 2 points

    Competent? Ethical....need help!

    Hi @Shelbi2016 A few issues which may interest you: (1) testamentary capacity, and (2) undue influence. You may want to discuss these issues as they pertain to your case with an experienced trust and estate attorney. Best of luck! The FindLaw.com Team
  8. 2 points

    I am a Victim of Scam and Fraud

    I once met a nice looking person online. The person needed me to provide a cellphone so we could speak directly. A sister in UAE (I think it was) would receive the phone and deliver it when she visited. Fortunately, at about the same time I also received a nice letter from an oil ministry worker in Nigeria who had money he needed to transfer. So I put them in contact with each other. I hoped it worked out for the best for them.
  9. 2 points
    Hi @PlainlySecret Welcome to the community and thanks for posting. So sorry to hear about the attack against you and all that you have endured. If the police locate a suspect you can likely initiate a civil action against that person. In the meantime, you may want to speak with a worker's compensation attorney just be totally aware of your right since you were injured while attending a work training. It may be possible that worker's compensation might pay for your out-of-pocket expenses and lost wages. You can also speak with a civil attorney about initiating a lawsuit against Baltimore who can advise you about the likelihood of succeeding in a claim against the city. Best of luck with your case and keep us posted! The FindLaw.com Team
  10. 2 points

    Failure to diagnose and treat and Lab errors

    If your condition is as serious as you believe it is, and I have not reason to doubt you, your best course of action is to take the $500.00 you have, go and see the doctor of your choice and get him/her to treat you. Then you will have a measure of damages to take to an attorney. Right now, your damages are speculation at best and $500.00 is not enough to get an attorney even started. At $300.00 per hour, it will go fast.
  11. 1 point

    parent in prison can he get custody

    Meaningless unless a judge also signed it. All her life partner is doing is babysitting until the court gets involved. In the abstract, anything is possible. Do you have some reason to suspect that this might happen? That question makes no sense. It's up to a judge to determine what is in the best interest of the child. Yes, you certainly could be. I suggest that you and the want-to-be Dad pool your resources and see if you or he can get court ordered guardianship.
  12. 1 point

    What does a Vacated motion mean?

    In the other post I wrote: And PG1067 wrote: and: It was to your advantage to get the judgment set aside. However, setting aside the judgment typically just reopens the case so now I think the next step would be for the attorney to file to dismiss the case.
  13. 1 point

    International visitation

    If your son is a US citizen, he will need a US passport. That will require *some* information from the parent(s) as children can not legally apply for passports on their own. That information wouldn't go to the other parent; it would go to the passport office. Here is a link to what you need to obtain a passport for a child under 16 https://travel.state.gov/content/travel/en/passports/apply-renew-passport/under-16.html What country will the child be visiting? How long is the visit? In most cases, a visa isn't necessary for short visits. The State Department and or the embassy/consulate of the country the child will visit can guide you. Some countries do require a letter of consent from the parent(s). The embassy/consulate can guide you. Keep in mind that you are going to have great difficulty finding an airline that will allow a young unaccompanied minor on an international flight. Those that will generally charge a fee for this.
  14. 1 point

    CEO duties

    If you're asking about the CEO of a particular nonprofit company, then generally you'd have to look at the company's articles of incorporation, by-laws, and board resolutions to get that information. The Illinois business organization statutes (accessible here: http://www.ilga.gov/legislation/ilcs/ilcs2.asp?ChapterID=65) might also give you some useful information about corporate officers for nonprofit companies generally, but for the most part the statutes point to the company documents (articles of incorporation, bylaws, board resolutions) as defining the powers and duties of each officer of the company.
  15. 1 point

    Criminal Offense or Civil or ?

    If she somehow managed to get the bank to give her money from an account to which she was not an owner (and she knew she was not an owner) then she committed a theft or fraud offense. But note that it was not the use of her married name itself that gives rise to the problem. She was identifying herself — just using her prior married name. It is not like she was impersonating someone else. So the question becomes, regardless of the name used, what rights she had to the account and what knowledge she had of it. As a result, the additional context you wish to leave out does in fact matter.
  16. 1 point

    My Dad deceased with no will

    Of his pension plan, right? Your father was free to designate whomever he wanted as the beneficiary of his pension plan. That he may have erroneously designated his girlfriend as a "common law wife" doesn't really matter. Regardless of anything he told someone who then told you what he told them, the only thing that matters is the written beneficiary designation that your father provided to the pension plan administrator. It is possible that your father had no bank accounts in his name alone and that his bank account(s) were joint accounts with his girlfriend. It's not clear what other assets you think he might have had, but it's possible that his estate consists of very little or nothing of any value (other than sentimental value). The following types of assets are not part of one's "estate": (1) assets owned jointly with someone else and which pass to the other joint owner by operation of law (e.g., real property owned as joint tenants and joint bank accounts); (2) assets with designated beneficiaries (e.g., life insurance and various types of retirement benefits); and (3) assets owned in a trust. Since these types of assets are not part of the estate, they "pass outside the estate." If you believe your father's estate has substantial value, then you should consult with a probate attorney in the area where he lived. By the way, most attorneys who handle wrongful death cases are not also probate attorneys. While most/all attorneys should know the basics of probate law, it is entirely likely that the attorney handling your wrongful death case won't have any particular expertise in this area. Then it probably will be extremely difficult to separate out assets that were solely your father's from assets that he owned together with his girlfriend. Under New Jersey law, when a person dies without a will and is not survived by a spouse but is survived by children, then the entire estate passes to the children. However, as noted above, things like a pension are generally not part of the estate. I'm not sure if "we know otherwise" refers to anything other than the pension. As explained above, if your father designated his girlfriend as the beneficiary of his pension (and even if he erroneously referred to her as "common law wife"), then that money is hers and is not part of the estate. All you know is what he told you or you heard him say. You have no way of knowing what he may have said to others when you weren't present. Moreover, if he listed his girlfriend as the beneficiary of his pension and (erroneously) designated her as his "common law" wife, then what you purport to "know" obviously isn't correct. Foremost among these reasons is that the lawyer was retained to file a wrongful death case, not a probate case, and is (probably) a personal injury lawyer, not a probate lawyer. :-)
  17. 1 point

    Prenuptials and Thrift Savings Plan (TSP)

    As phrased, this question doesn't make sense. A prenup is a document, and documents don't have "discretion." As "Tax_Counsel" previously explained, "if your pre-nup is valid in your state and the court applies it in the divorce then your spouse is entitled to no more than what the court orders," and "the pre-nup might help you preserve your TSP account in a divorce." The first of these quotes is a bit awkwardly worded, but the point is that a prenup may well impact what the court does in the event of a divorce, including how the TSP is treated. That's the whole point of doing a prenup.
  18. 1 point

    Property Taxes

    There is no question that the amount is deductible in the year you pay it. My guess, however, is that your check date is what counts, not the posting date at the tax office. Our old friend Tax Agent participates here as Tax_Counsel. Stick around for his response.
  19. 1 point

    Capital Gains Tax on Foreign 2nd Home

    The property was located in Scotland, and UK tax law imposes capital gains tax on the sale of most property, though the gain from some sales of your primary home are not taxed. As this was not your primary home, it would be subject to the tax. Under UK tax, you get a tax free allowance of £11,300, which means that only your gain in excess of that is subject to tax. You may deduct from the gain your purchase cost of the property, costs you paid for improvements to the property, and certain costs of sale, like solictor’s fees, etc. You cannot deduct the annual property taxes, rates, and repairs from the gain. Some of that might have been deductible from UK income tax in the year the cost was incurred had you paid it (and I don't know if it was), but even if that had been the case you don’t get to deduct things that you do not pay for. You may want to consult a UK tax professional to get the proper gain computation as I do not know all the details that go into it, I just know the fundamental aspects of it. The U.S. has a world wide tax system in which U.S. citizens and permanent residents are taxed on their income no matter where in the world the income comes from. Thus, you will be taxed in the U.S. on the gain, too. The U.S. does not allow a tax free allowance like the UK does but otherwise the rules are similar. Your capital gain is computed by subtracting from the gross sales price your adjusted basis and certain costs of the sale. The adjusted basis is the price you paid to buy the property increased by the cost of any improvements (but not repairs) to the property and decreased by any depreciation that you took or could have taken on the property. Your brother was, I assume living in the home and paying those costs in exchange for living there. Under U.S. tax law, that would generally be regarded as rental arrangement with those costs he paid treated as rent paid to you. That rent should have been included in income each year, but you would also deduct against that the costs of the rental, including depreciation. This would likely mean that you had no income from the rental each year as the costs plus depreciation in this case would almost certainly equal or exceed the rent, but the depreciation you should have taken would still be deducted from the basis even if you did not report the rental arrangement, thus increasing your gain. The rules for basis are discussed in detail in IRS publication 551. IRS publication 544 discusses the sale of property. IRS publication 527 discusses rental residential property. Those publications will not directly address the issue of your brother’s payments of your annual property costs being treated as rent, but the case law (court decisions) and IRS administrative rulings do make it clear that this is how the arrangement gets treated. Now, you will not end up paying double tax (i.e. tax to both the U.S. and UK) on the sale of the home. In this situation you will be eligible to claim a foreign tax credit on your U.S. return for the tax you had to pay to the UK for the capital gain on the house. The effect of the foreign tax credit is that in the end you basically end up just paying the higher of the two taxes on the sale. As the U.S. capital gains rates are pretty low, that means that the foreign tax credit might completely offset the U.S. tax on the gain. But you have to report the gain and then claim the foreign tax credit to get there. Information on the foreign tax credit is found in IRS publication 514. Note that the U.S. and UK do have an income tax treaty but in this situation the treaty is of little help. The treaty says that gains on real property are taxable to the country in which the real property is located, but the U.S. reserves the right in all its tax treaties to tax its own citizens notwithstanding the treaty, so the U.S. still taxes you on this despite the treaty. That’s the reason why you will need to report the gain and take the foreign tax credit to deal with this.
  20. 1 point
    I'm sure you can do lots of things, including explaining the situation to the two utilities and anyone else who asks. Whether that will result in any of the added fees being removed is anyone's guess. Obviously, you'll still have to pay the bills.
  21. 1 point

    3RD Party check fraud& Forgery help

    Why do you think you need to slap a label on this? I don't know what county you're in, but if this form is any indication, all you need to do is describe what happened.
  22. 1 point

    service dog workers comp

    It is possible that medical care could include a service dog. It does call into question causal relation if the prior service dog was not part of the claim.
  23. 1 point


    This thread is getting out of hand so I'm locking it. Please remember to keep it civil on these boards, everyone. This space is as pleasant as we make it - together.
  24. 1 point
    Yes the witnesses should be interviewed separately and should not be allowed to discuss their testimony. The defense attorney can use the fact that they may have colluded during the trial.
  25. 1 point

    Changing gift of home to temp stay

    Not really sure what you are asking. According to your narration there is no non-verbal evidence that the owner of the unit intended to give the unit to her sister. There is apparently a bill of sale tending to prove Becky owns the property. So between the two parties there is not a question about who has superior ownership of the property. Annie's position is that there is a contract to transfer the property to her. Besides the fact that the alleged contract is entirely verbal, the contract also appears to be gratuitous. A gratuitous contract is a contract where there is no exchange of value. Generally gratuitous contracts are not enforceable. Annie made payments to Becky but the payments were apparently in the exact amount of the ground rent. So the obvious inference is that she was renting the unit. Had she made any payment in excess of the rent (and presumably utilities) she would be in position to claim she had an actual contract. Since she didn't, the only logical inference for the finder of fact is that she was simply subletting unit and had no enforceable contract. BTW, I would have to say that inclusion of the factual statements about the parties health, marital status, familial relations, etc. is all unnecessary and irrelevant.
  26. 1 point

    Deceased beneficaries of will

    A devisee is a person or other entity to whom real property is left. A legatee is a person or other entity to whom personal property is left. That being said, the words are often used interchangeably by those not schooled in the law. Anyway, the clause you have quoted makes it very clear that the share of the estate left to any of the individuals who predeceased the testator goes to the surviving individuals and not to the heirs of the deceased persons.
  27. 1 point

    Friend Problems

    Since your daughter is an adult, you have no personal liability. To the extent possible, I suggest you make her deal with the insurance company and whatever else comes up.
  28. 1 point


    Notify your insurer.
  29. 1 point

    Living Trust

    Although I have prepared revocable trusts for folks who would benefit from them, I generally tried to talk people out of them. A trust is useful if there are minor children or special needs children. An estate planning trust to maximize the marital deduction when the estate is over $5.5 million is also beneficial. But in 99% of the cases, at least in Virginia where I practiced, the cost and complications of creating, maintaining and terminating the trust far exceeded the cost of probating and administering an estate.
  30. 1 point

    Stolen money

    First of all, this is not stolen money, it is a breach of contract and if you report it to the police, they will tell you it is a civil matter. Take him to small claims court and you can both tell your side of the story and the judge will decide.
  31. 1 point

    Next of kin issue

    The coroner's office may not be the one who filled out the death certificate--it may have been the boyfriend and they just accepted the erroneous information he reported, without ever officially verifying it. What type of settlement is involved here (is it from a wrongful death case, personal injury accident, etc.) and how much is the settlement? You will need to check at the county courthouse probate court to see if the decedent had a last will and testament that was probated in court. If the answer is yes, did she designate the boyfriend as a beneficiary? If the son-in-law already has an attorney working on his behalf for the settlement, then this attorney should be able to advise if the boyfriend has any rights to any of this estate at all. Whether there was a will or not, the attorney needs to be looking at probate law to see what the law says. You may also want to tell the attorney that the son-in-law wants to fill out a form from the Vital Statistics Department for the relevant state to have the death certificate officially corrected (that is just submitting a form, and it does not have to go through court)..
  32. 1 point
    While it was filed in civil court, it wasn't a "civil case." It was more likely a 8100 petition to retain and destroy a confiscated weapon. Service of the petition can be by mail to the address where the weapon was confiscated. If no response is filed within 30 days, the cops win by default and the weapon is either kept by the cops to use or it is destroyed. This isn't something you can set aside years later. The gun is gone.
  33. 1 point

    Facts vs. Illegal Legal Advice

    Yes. Surprised? And, under the "letter" of Maryland law (and likely every other state as well), I just committed the same crime by answering your question. Maryland Business and Occupations Code Section 10-101 defines the following: http://law.justia.com/codes/maryland/2015/article-gbo/title-10/ Technically, anybody making any comments (helpful or otherwise) about anybody else's legal matter is in violation. You're in violation, I'm in violation, any non-lawyer on this and all the other legal websites who comments on anybody's legal situation is in violation. I've been at this for 15 years on a variety of sites and have racked up enough counts of the unauthorized practice of law to put me in jail for several lifetimes with billions of dollars in fines. Your accuser is technically correct but from a practical standpoint he's also an idiot because nothing is ever going to come of you rendering an opinion on your HOA's legal issues any more than I'm ever going to get charged for it. So let's have a good laugh while we continue our criminal enterprise. LOL. Stick around. There are a couple of lawyers that participate here. They may have some comments.
  34. 1 point

    Person refuses to return borrowed property

    Like anyone else, you have dozens of legal rights, and it would serve no useful purpose to try and list them all. We have no way of predicting how the case will turn out if you sue her, but you obviously will get nothing if you don't try. Why wouldn't you try.
  35. 1 point

    Separated for 16 yrs and husbands retirement

    Out of curiosity (mostly), why would you separate for 16 years and not bother getting divorced? During the period of your separation, what filing status(es) did you use for your federal and state income taxes (e.g., married filing jointly, married filing separate, etc.)? Not sure what you mean by this. "Retirement" is merely the act of permanently not working anymore, and there can be no doubt that this is available to him. Not sure what you're intending with "etc." By chance are you talking about a pension or some sort of retirement benefit? If so, the answer is to ask. If neither of you filed for and obtained a divorce, then you're still married.
  36. 1 point
    I'm interested in making a generic cart part for an older car model. I'd like to ascertain that the patent has expired for that product, how can I find that out?
  37. 1 point

    marrying under false name.2

    You marry a person, not a name. If you married someone and have not gotten a divorce through the courts, you are still legally married to them and not free to marry someone else, regardless of what name you use.
  38. 1 point

    City tree falls on Property Damages shed

    We live in Clearlake Calif. A huge oak tree along the creek behind our house fell on our property doing some damage. A neighbor said the city owns the tree. Would the city be responsible for damage and clean up?
  39. 1 point

    Doffing and donning class action info

    Hi @cdhum Welcome to the community and thanks for posting! Do you know what court this lawsuit was filed in? If so, you can go to the court's online website, or visit the court clerk's office and ask to pull the file. Often class action cases can take a long time to litigate -- even years. Pursuant to California law, a party can move to dismiss a case if it is not brought to trial within a certain number of years, however, there are many exceptions to this rule. Let us know if you have additional questions! The FindLaw.com Team
  40. 1 point

    Sole custody of 1, joint custody of 2

    You could do it either way but a single new order, not document, would probably be best.
  41. 1 point

    Pro supp after failure of divorce decree

    The question doesn't really make sense. "Exemptions" is a reference to a law (or laws) that make certain property exempt from a civil creditor's efforts to recover a judgment. For example, if a creditor seeks to levy on and sell your car that is worth $4k or less, you can claim it as exempt pursuant to section 34-55-10-2(b)(2) of the Indiana Statutes. The specific mechanism by which you do this is a bit too "local" in nature for a message board such as this (and I don't think anyone from Indiana follows these boards regularly). I can't even follow the run one sentence that is your second question, and which appears to be based on facts you didn't share with us.
  42. 1 point

    Double Jeopardy

    You won't get that. First, unless the defendant himself seeks to overturn the original plea agreement and vacate the sentence that previous conviction will stand. That being the case, double jeopardy prevents the state from trying him on murder charges now since he was already convicted of a crime for that particular death. If the state didn't have a strong enough case to want to go to trial on murder charges 20 years ago, what makes you think the case would be any stronger now?
  43. 1 point

    Mother refuses DNA testing

    First because she's only 8 years old. This is not something she should have to deal with. Second because it's very possible that the poster isn't the father either. So you expose an 8 year old who loves her daddy to the idea that he's not her "real" daddy because some stranger wants to find out if he's her daddy and if he isn't, she's left wondering who is. That's in no way helpful for the psyche of a young child.
  44. 1 point

    Force Amenity

    Explain "trash pickup service". I'm too accustomed to landlords' inappropriate assignation of something as "amenity" when it isn't. If you are m-t-m, not sure why they wouldn't just increase rent by $25 extra and then separately say "New amenity! Just put trash outside door and no more lugging to dumpsters." If you're in the middle of a lease, they aren't free to change terms. Regardless, fighting "The [wo]Man" (in this case, landlord) often requires an expenditure of time, trouble-effort and dough well beyond what you may suspect, even where landlord is behaving unlawfully or contrary to contract. The "(it's the) principle" cases usually need to be personally meaningful to look back on them as worthwhile.
  45. 1 point

    Chapter 13 converstion to Chapter 7

    If there are assets to be administered by the chapter 7 trustee, may be able to collect the fees. In some districts and if it is included in the fee agreement, he can collect a fee for the conversion motion and hearing (if necessary). He would also have to get court approval for any additional fees.
  46. 1 point
    There's no law that will entitle you to do this. However, you are free to run and hide and hope you never get caught, maybe skip to some third world country with no extradition. One less criminal in the US suits me.
  47. 1 point

    Wrongful termination?

    Hi RMS, Welcome to the community and thanks for posting. So sorry to hear both about your medical issues and the loss of your job! It is possible, if your employer terminated you specifically because you had a medical condition or took leave, that your employer might have wrongfully terminated your employment. As others have stated, this will depend on the specific factual circumstances surrounding the termination. You may want to consider conferring with an experienced employment attorney, who can advise you about wrongful termination and your likelihood of success with this claim. Many offer free consultations—you can use our Lawyer Directory to find an employment attorney in your area. You can also review these helpful materials from our Learn About the Law section: Employee Rights after a Job Termination Vacation and Sick Leave Wrongful Termination Best of luck and keep us posted! The FindLaw.com Team
  48. 1 point
    Not really sure what "back side of the fence means. If the fence sits on the line between your property and his property (and/or the lines between his property and property belonging to other neighbors), which you said it does, then there is "your side" and "his side." What am I missing here? It would be helpful to have a citation to the law you've referenced, but I have to assume that you're responsible for the grass on your side (i.e., the grass that exists on your property) and he's responsible for the grass on his side (i.e., the grass that exists on his property). Trim his fence? Huh? If you damage his fence, then you should pay the cost of repair. This is completely garbled. "[F]ences that share that wall"?? What wall? What's the difference between a wall and a fence? Note that I don't see how any of this discussion about the cited statutes, which relate to the construction and maintenances of fences, has anything at all to do with your questions, which appear to relate solely to the maintenance of the property on either side of the fence or damage to the fence that might result from such maintenance. Perhaps I'm not reading your post correctly, but I don't interpret your questions as having anything to do with the maintenance of the fence itself. This statement is inconsistent with your statement that the fence is "on the property line."
  49. 1 point


    my former employer is providing me with health insurance but I am not currently employed with him, if I use this coverage , and the insurance company finds out that I am not longer employed by this company, would the insurance company make me pay for the health costs that I have incurred by using the coverage , though insuring me
  50. 1 point

    Retail Fraud Third Degree

    Retail fraud 3 in Michigan is a misdemeanor. This charge is for a dollar amount from $99.99 on down VERY SELDOM will a person convicted of this charge (And it is called retail fraud 3) ever see a jail cell. I know, I arrest people for this offense all the time and have been in court with most of them. No judge will take a mother away from her kids for a retail fraud 3 crime. If you have a clean record, you didn't fight or resist the security person or the police officer, you will get a fine, probably community service of 40 hours and you are done with it. The bad thing is you will have a conviction on your record which may or may not hurt you in the future with a job search, etc. You may ask for a deferred sentence which will allow your conviction to be erased if you do not come before the judge in 6 months or a year depending on what agreement you come up with. To be honest if the retailer seeks a civil remedy proceeding on you, that will cost you more than what the judge will give you. You to be honest probably do not need a lawyer in this case. But when you appear in court, the judge will call your name, he will ask you how you plead, if you say not guilty, he will ask you if you have a lawyer to represent you. At this time you say no and request one be appointed for you. But this is such a minor offense it probably is not worth it, and that will p*ss off the judge to have to schedule a trial for such a petty offense. I am not saying stealing is petty, but this holds no jail time anyway and depending on the evidence the store has against you (Like a video showing you doing the task) all a lawyer will do is get you no jail time, which you will not get anyway. This is the lowest level of retail fraud there is in this state. If you had a RF 1 then you would need a lawyer, but a RF 3? Not worth it and since you are not denying you did it, there is nothing to fight here