Our 2008 blog post about mental illness cases introduced two aspects of that topic. Last month we covered Mental Health Courts – specialized court programs which can set up treatment in lieu of incarceration for some criminal offenders with mental health problems. For those offenders, their mental illness may have been a contributing factor in their commission of a crime, but is not severe enough to warrant commitment to a mental institution.
In order to be committed, a mentally-ill person must be dangerous to himself or herself or to others, or be unable to care for himself or herself. Criteria … Read More
Unless you live in Delaware, Mississippi, or Tennesse, you may not be familiar with the term Chancery Court. But Chancery Courts were part of the English judicial system for hundreds of years, were brought to the American colonies, and were part of most U.S. states’ early judicial systems.
The name itself originated outside of the judicial system; in Europe, starting with the Roman Empire, the Chancellor was in charge of government records. When today’s English legal system first began to develop after the Norman Conquest, the Chancery was the public records office, under the direction of the Lord Chancellor. Because … Read More
Crime is in the news lately. But as they say in the news business, “If it bleeds, it leads.” – so whether crime rates are up or down, crime is always in the news. Among the crime reports are those in which the accused is a minor, so the reports note whether the accused will be tried as an adult or a minor. But what does that question really mean?
If the minor is tried as an adult, the trial will be in a regular criminal court, and neither the process nor the result will take the accused’s age into … Read More
Last month we discussed judges (Justices of the Peace and Magistrates) who are not required to have law degrees, and whose courts have jurisdiction over areas larger than a city or town. Judges of city, town, village, and other municipal courts in many states are also not required to have law degrees or be practicing lawyers. These judges only have geographical jurisdiction over their own municipality, and in many states their subject-matter jurisdiction is limited to violations of the municipality’s ordinances.
We reviewed New York’s Town Courts and Village Courts in a 2010 post; with over 1200 such courts, … Read More
If you’re looking for a job in Mississippi, the Mississippi Department of Employment Security has a new website “MDES” for job seekers and employers. Potential employees can register online to search for a new job, register for unemployment, review job hunting tips, learn about Veteran’s services, job fairs, and featured employers.
The website also offers tools for potential employers including recruitment services, online job postings, online viewing of job applications, on-the-job training information, unemployment taxes, and work opportunity tax credit information.
If you are new to Mississippi’s employment website “WINGS,” you can follow the registration information … Read More
“Justice of the Peace” is an imposing title. Almost like Justice of the Supreme Court? Not quite; A Justice of the Peace presides over a court of limited territorial and subject-matter jurisdiction, and is addressed as “Judge” more often than “Justice”. Justices of the Peace were originally English quasi-judicial officers who volunteered to preserve the “king’s peace” in their local county or borough. Important qualifications for the position were land ownership and connections with the monarchy (and later, with the Lord Chancellor and Parliament).
American colonists brought the Justice of the Peace system with them, and it persisted throughout the … Read More
Have you ever wondered about the safety of the food that you eat at your neighborhood restaurant? Ever wonder when it was last inspected? Well, depending on where you live, you may be able to search online for the latest inspection scores for the restaurants in your area.
All states and counties have rules and regulations about the safe handling of food including periodic inspections of the establishments. Generally, the inspection scores are the result of routine inspections covering critical and non-critical items. Many states and counties have created websites which provide the results of the inspections. Some of the … Read More
Ever wonder what happens to properties that have delinquent property taxes owed? They are sold at public auction for the amount of the back taxes, administrative costs and accumulated interest. The sales are generally held once per year by the County Treasurer, Tax Collector or Sheriff’s Office.
The Free Public Records Directory provides links to many different categories of public records including delinquent taxes and delinquent tax sales. Using the Foreclosures and Tax Lien Sale Records main page, you can access information about delinquent taxes or tax sales for a specific state and each county within the state. Each state … Read More
The 2009 annual Sunshine Week survey of government information available online is in and the results are interesting. Results were based on reviews of government web sites in every state to determine the availability of 20 different kinds of public records. The public record types researched include disciplinary actions against attorneys and doctors, inspection reports of bridges, schools, school buses, hospitals, nursing homes and child care centers, financial disclosure information including audits, project expenditures and campaign finance, as well as death certificates.
The survey found that death certificates were the least likely type of record to be found online and … Read More