Car Accident - What do you do after an accident?

About 5.5 million car accidents are reported every year. Most of us will only be in a few accidents in our lifetime and most will be minor. However, when an accident happens it can still disrupt your calm and ruin your day. In addition to natural anxiety in response to an unexpected event, the process of working with the other driver, the police, and the insurance companies can create further apprehension. Much of the stress can be eased if you take a little time now to prepare your vehicle and yourself for the chance event of an auto accident.   More Info

Vehicle Aftermarket Additions and Your Car Insurance

For car enthusiasts, some of the joy of car ownership involves the personalization of the vehicle with several types of aftermarket products. This can be as extreme as lowering the vehicle or adjusting the engine to basic muffler changes or new detailing. Any change to your vehicle can be regulated by the laws in your state and aftermarket parts must meet federal regulations as well. Warranties are often the first battle ground if your altered vehicle ends up in the shop. If your insurance carrier is made aware of aftermarket adjustments to your vehicle, this can impact your premiums. There are some simple aspects to be aware of before altering your car or truck. More Info

How the Presidential Caucus Work for Iowa Participants

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Every 4 years the race for the next president of the united states starts in Iowa. They way Iowa votes is unique because the state uses a caucus. Democrats and Republicans will participate with their own party members exclusively to decide their presidential preferences for the 2012 election. It should be noted that the Democratic party was the first party in Iowa to initiate the Caucus procedure. The Republican party followed with a Straw Poll..  More Info

Charity 101 - Choose the Best & Avoid Scams

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Giving to others in need seems to be a natural impulse the world over. Many of us enjoy giving to causes, programs or research that we agree with and believe in; however, sometimes we are caught unaware and are asked to give by volunteers. We may love the idea of the cause but know little about the organization. Or we may like the idea, but prefer it were handled differently. So where do you go to find the best fitting charity and how do you determine if they are legitimate? Below we have compiled some things to consider when choosing a charity, such as when to give, how to avoid scams, and other ways to give to the community rather than a cash donation.   More Info

The Importance of Security for Video and Document Share:

Every manner of communication from the law office to a client is expected and understood to be strictly confidential.  Naturally, a major goal of every lawyer is to establish a lasting relationship with the client through confidential and timely responses to the client’s needs and requests.  Therefore, an “on-going” and “ever-ready” means of secure communication serves to enhance the attorney-client relationship.  By the law office taking measures to assure that all disclosures, documents, and discussions are uncompromised and secure, the lawyer conveys to the client the fact that the client’s privacy is as important to the lawyer as it is to the client. More Info

Is videoconferencing your customer service solution?: Is online insurance right for you?

The evolution of the help desk for companies has brought with it a variety of ways for clients to correspond using the company website as a communication platform. With e-mail already being a standard replacement for printed memos and letters, there is a growing demand for websites to offer even faster communications with a personable presence, and a direct convenience with instantaneous results. The solution? Live Help (by enlighten technologies incorporated™) - The Future of Customer Service for Companies More Info

Domain Name Basics for your Business

Skeptics initially doubted the utility of the internet and, in the early years of growth, many businesses utilized a webpage like an online business card that listed little more than their contact information. Many were uncertain how to promote their brand online which included the dilemma of creating a domain name. New URLs that included acronyms or catch phrases as well as company names now competed across state lines and even international borders. Today, the benefit of maintaining a strong online presence is no longer in question. Indeed, the internet provides consumers 24/7 access to even the smallest of businesses. Legal professionals are no exception as they discover the new challenges of translating their brick and mortar business with an online presence.  More Info

Flood Survival: How to prepare, respond, and recover from a flood

lawyer logoExperience is sometimes an unforgiving instructor. At Lawsonline™, we learned about devastation caused by flood waters firsthand when Cedar Rapids, IA was hit by a massive flood June 13, 2008. Lawsonline™ is parented by enlighten technologies, inc.™, which includes many other businesses such as LAWCHEK® and LEGALCONFERENCE™. Our headquarters in downtown Cedar Rapids was inundated with water after the Cedar River crested at 31.1 feet (19.1 feet over flood stage) to overtake 1,300 blocks of the city.* The first floor was completely lost and when the water reached 4 feet on the upper level, it was destroyed, as well. After a slow road to recovery, and upon reflection, we've written an article about what to do if a flood hits your home or business. We hope our readers never have to use the practical advice in this article.  More Info

Flood Survival Part II: Cleaning Up & Battling Mold

  1. The Return: Again, do not enter until the authorities have given the go-ahead. You may be instantly charged if you do not comply with their precautions. Remember, they are trying to help by checking structures for integrity and other hazards such as possible gas leaks. Also check to see how the authorities want you to return to the site. They may limit the number of people you take in, have check in/out points, or other rules in place.
  2. Tetanus: Make sure you have a current tetanus vaccination. Although the CDC has stated on their website that it is now not required to work in a flood disaster area, they do mention that it is beneficial in case an accident does occur. Tetanus should be boosted every 10 years. You should have a good idea if you have this beforehand. In Cedar Rapids, tetanus vaccinations were offered to those who had need. However, with the new information on government websites like the CDC, these programs may not happen at future floods. Therefore, know if you have one so if you do get injured treatment can be simplified.

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Don't Break the Bank: Tips for the Household Budget:

Most of us always appreaciate new ways to be a bit smarter with our money. If it wasn't your New Year's resolution this year, you can always make a late start and implement a few new approaches to making your money last. Finishing taxes on one year and looking at the lengthy year ahead, a little time taken to reflect on spending habits can help lead to better financial security during the slow economic recovery. Although the majority of us do not have direct influence on the big companies and banks, we do control how we run our individual households, and as the economy improves slowly, many of us will be tightening our spending budgets and looking for ways to save. Below we have provided some online resources for everything from keeping a balanced budget to finding ways to shop a bit smarter.. More Info

Homeowners Insurance: What does your policy cover?

Many of us obtain our homeowners insurance when we purchase our home. After this initial purchase, we do not give this insurance another thought. It is not until the roof is damaged during a violent thunderstorm, a major appliance fails and floods our basement, or the neighbor's kid slips and fractures their wrist in our living room that we dust off the policy and ask ourselves, "Am I covered for this?" Don't wait until damage or an accident happens to discover what your insurance policy includes. Instead, you should have a good understanding of your policy and every year you should assess if your coverage should increase. The purpose of this article is to point out some general characteristics of homeowners insurance and help you determine if you have the right coverage. Obviously this cannot substitute for a consultation with your insurance provider, but it will give you a better idea of what questions to ask.  More Info

Online Insurance: Is online insurance right for you?

The Internet is a powerful tool for the savvy online consumer. You can review products, compare prices, research companies and purchase almost anything. Following this trend is the increased availability of insurance online. Insurance companies are providing coverage information, quotes and even contracts online. This includes automobile, homeowners, life, medical and even pet insurance. Insurance has traditionally been a high customer service field with direct in-person contact with your insurance agent. Because of the change in customer contact, the migration towards providing insurance online has not always been a smooth one. Instead, companies are finding some tools work and others only cause frustration or confusion. Indeed, the availability of insurance online is still fluctuating and developing. Below we have compiled a few of the ways you can utilize online insurance options and determine if it is the right tool for you. More Info

Interpreting the Second Amendment, An Introduction:

The Second Amendment in the Bill of Rights was melded together from several proposals and simplified into twenty-seven words. This brevity is often blamed for the enigmatic meaning that has fueled the recent debate on guns, government, and individual rights. Lawyers, judges, historians, and political scientists delve repeatedly into the 18th century world of the Framers in attempts to ascertain the intended meaning of the Second Amendment.. More Info

Citizen-Soldiers, Part I: Creating a well-regulated Militia

In 1792, the first national legislation detailing the organization of the state militias was enacted after years of debate. Questions of local vs central authority, local need vs uniformity, required service vs substitution, and general militia vs select militia were just a few of the recurring issues that challenged the new country. Republican ideals touted the idea of a citizen-militia who protected liberty and would make the reliance on a dangerous standing army obsolete. But efforts to use the militia on the frontier and in wars as military forces failed. These efforts removed the militia from its traditional localized function and inequalities of service, disorganization, and poor preparation only proved the militia was useless on the worst days or inconsistent on the best. So why did the Founders cling to this ideal? A long tradition of militias used effectively at the local level and political thought that searched for a real alternative to expensive and corruptible standing armies encouraged the Founders to try militia reform and revival. This Uniform Militia Act provided a compromise of several conflicting ideas about how to create the most efficient militia. However, in the short history of the militia below, it becomes evident that this Act did little more than officially recognize preexisting local practices. The lack of consequences for failing to comply with the Uniform Militia Act ultimately left the militias heavily localized, again relying on local initiative for their success. More Info

Citizen-Soldiers, Part II: Volunteer Militias and the National Guard:

The National Guard enlistment oath requires enlistees to acknowledge their allegiance to both federal and state authority. This select militia developed from a foundational belief in the United States that a militia, made up of citizen-soldiers, should be central to local, state, and national protection. Originally this militia was expected to be a general militia that included all male citizens eighteen to forty-five years old who would dutifully abandon their civil life in times of need to become the citizen-soldier. But the general militias met obstacles from the very beginning that prevented them from performing their idealized role and meeting expectations. The militias were often successful meeting local needs but proved problematic when needed for an organized military defense; they never materialized as a sustainable replacement to a standing army. As the country grew the general militias proved too unwieldy, disorganized, and underprepared to provide even local solutions and states increasingly favored volunteer or select militias who advocated for national support which would lead to the federal organization of the National Guard. The focus on the National Guard by state and federal governments diminished and eliminated the viability of using the general militia system. Ironically, several of the country's Founders thought a federally run select militia training system was unavoidable and desirable but popular fears of centralizing too much power in the national government prevented them from creating a select militia More Info

The Body of the People: Rebellion:

The ratification of the U.S. Constitution by all states in 1790 came after the passionate debates between Federalists and Antifederalists highlighted the tensions between regional and national interests. Can a representative government succeed in balancing the local needs of communities against the needs of the nation? James Madison argued in Federalist #10 that a larger national government would protect citizens from extreme shifts in policy by factions and, as a result, protect minority groups better than the smaller state governments.[1] But this also required political minorities to submit to the realities of a representative government and respect the decisions of the majority. Citizens had to accept that a balance between benefits and disappointments was part of establishing a peaceful government. In theory many agreed this was a fair exchange but in practice there were still lingering tensions. For many it was difficult to suddenly accept that national interests superseded their local needs. Conflicts could turn violent when local political majorities found themselves political minorities at the national level. This struggle set off the Pennsylvania Regulations of the 1790s, known more commonly as the Whiskey Rebellion and Fries’s Rebellion.. More Info

The Body of the People: Regulation

Does the Second Amendment in the U.S. Bill of Rights protect the right to bear arms in order to ensure armed citizens can check government? Is there a "right to revolution" inherently protected by the Second Amendment? And, if so, does this idea include a "right to insurrection" wherein armed protestors or regulators can check administrative missteps without dissolving the government outright?

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The Body of the People: Revolution:

How do you determine when a revolution is over? When the fighting is done there are several, often competing, points of view or goals that spurred the revolutionaries to action. How do revolutionaries begin to develop a constructive dialogue of compromise? Who determines the majority and who speaks for the "body of the people"? What happens when the revolution has not achieved its goals for everyone and how can those who disagree express this dissent? This is precisely the challenge that Americans faced after the Revolutionary War. This struggle for defining and defending the various goals of the revolution is illustrated in the climatic events surrounding Shays’s Rebellion - a rebellion sometimes called the last battle of the American Revolution. More Info

Judicial Interpretation of the Second Amendment:

Those who watch the headlines in the news today cannot help but see an uncanny parallel between the hypothetical scenario given by Justice Green and the tragic mass shootings of the last few decades. However, this opinion also highlights the perplexing questions about the regulation of arms: What is the line between legislation and a political right? Or between law and a personal right? Is firearm regulation appropriate? If so, how much? When is a right infringed? How does society protect itself from the few who would strike "terror to the people"? When does "police power" become arbitrary? Most discussions about gun rights and gun control in the media and in public center around these perplexing questions of how to make an imperfect society safer . More Info

Political Parties in the United States

How will you vote? Democratic? Republican? Third Party? Or will you vote as an Independent and choose candidates based on their political platform, regardless of party affiliation? When it comes time to vote, most of us have chosen a candidate from one of the two primary parties, Democratic or Republican, and usually vote for the same party for each office, even if we don't vote a straight ticket ballot. But what about the lesser-known third parties? It might surprise you to know that there are nearly fifty recognized political parties sponsoring candidates for various offices. Remember - you don't have to vote for the same party for each office. For instance, if you're a Republican and are committed to voting for a Republican candidate for the office of President in the 2012 Presidential Election, that doesn't mean that in the next general election you can't vote as an Independent and choose a Third Party, such as the Green Party, for the office of Governor in your state. Especially if the Green Party candidate better represents your beliefs and values on state issues. Or, if you want to see a new direction in the Presidential office and have decided to vote for a Republican candidate in the 2012 Presidential Election, you can still vote for your current state Governor in the next general election, even if their affiliation is Democratic. It's all about voting for the candidate that best reflects your views. Remember - no matter what way others are voting, when you step into the voting booth, it's completely confidential, and it's entirely up to you! More Info

Is videoconferencing your customer service solution?

The evolution of the help desk for companies has brought with it a variety of ways for clients to correspond using the company website as a communication platform. With e-mail already being a standard replacement for printed memos and letters, there is a growing demand for websites to offer even faster communications with a personable presence, and a direct convenience with instantaneous results. The solution? Live Help (by enlighten technologies incorporated™) - The Future of Customer Service for Companies

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