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Monthly Archives: September 2012

Divorce: Flat Legal Fees & Costs

The court costs and legal fees for a divorce depend on a number of things: whether the matter will be contested, whether there are minor children, the presence of complex property issues, and the Missouri County the divorce is filed in. The court costs for filing a divorce action in Missouri counties such as Saint […]

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Contract Disputes: Ambiguity, Vagueness, Reformation

Interpreting contract language is an essential requirement for any commercial/business attorney. It is, further, an important job function of judges. The cardinal rule for interpreting contracts is to ascertain the intention of the parties through the language of the contract and to give effect to that intention. J.E. Hathman, Inc. v. Sigma Alpha Epsilon Club, 491 S.W.2d […]

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Missouri Statute of Limitations

Statutes of limitations are laws which place a defined time limit on how long an individual has to bring in court or an administrative agency. They can depend widely on the claim. Under Missouri Law, most of the limitations periods are proscribed in Chapter 516. As a general rule of thumb, many of the limitations […]

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The Importance of Damages in Litigation

To make the prosecution of any civil case worthwhile, there has to be sufficient damages to justify the time and expense of litigation. Very often we receive questions which, based on how the factual circumstances are presented, suggest that liability exists, but the damages complained of do not warrant the filing of a case. For […]

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Unemployment Benefits: Rights, Objections, Appeals

Unemployment benefits — referred to statutorily as”employment security” — is in place to provide a safety net for persons unemployed through no fault of their own.  The law is in place to provide temporary funds to individuals whose jobs have been terminated for reasons outside of their control (e.g., the employer going out of business, […]

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Corporate/Business Shareholder Preemptive Rights, Options

With Missouri corporations — both closely held and public — one of the major issues that must be addressed is whether stockholders are entitled to preemptive rights. Simply speaking, preemptive rights allow stockholders to purchase stock in future sales of stock, thus allowing them to maintain their ownership percentage in the corporation. For instance, if […]

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Rent & Possession: Landlord-Tenant

Rent & Possession is a landlord-tenant action in which a landlord may recover possession of a leased premises and any outstanding back rent when a tenant defaults under a lease. Before the landlord may act, however, it must first send a written demand to the tenant requesting that the default be corrected. It is typical […]

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The 14th Amendment, Incorporation, Due Process

The 14th Amendment to the U.S. Constitution is arguably one of the most important provisions in the constitution because, among other things, it has been interpreted to have the effect of incorporating the bill of rights against the states. Before the twentieth century, the first ten amendments were interpreted to apply only against the federal […]

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Statute of Frauds — When Contracts Need to be in Writing

When do contracts need to be in writing? Under Missouri law, the answer lies in statutory section 432.010: No action shall be brought to charge any executor or administrator, upon any special promise to answer for any debt or damages out of his own estate, or to charge any person upon any special promise to […]

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Abuse of Process & Malicious Prosecution

Litigation is expensive. Between court costs, discovery costs, and legal fees, you can end up feeling like you “lost” even when you prevail. It is for this reason that there are often strong cries for lawsuit reforms, such as loser pays systems in which the losing party in litigation must pay for the prevailing parties […]

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