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Student loans plague the minds of millions of Americans, but people often have more financial obligations than student loan debt to worry about. Your budget may already be stretched thin between other debts, bills, and necessities. If you are experiencing financial hardship on top of everything, it may feel impossible to honor every financial obligation, including your student loan payments.

Unfortunately, defaulting on your private student loans can greatly impact your financial health, resulting in consequences you may not have anticipated. Many people don’t realize that defaulting on federal student loans can affect your job prospects, and the same
Continue Reading Defaulting on private student loans … and my job prospects

Smiling at the Beginning of my bike workout on South Mountain

It’s 50 days until my first full Ironman race – Ironman Lake Placid. It’s taken nearly 3 years to get here.

After my coach and I did the Half Ironman Maine in 2019, we signed up for Ironman Mont-Tremblant (near Montreal, Canada) for 2020.

And then COVID hit.

Our race was cancelled, and all got deferred to Ironman Mont-Tremblant in 2021. Then that race was cancelled, not because of COVID infection rates, but because the Canada-U.S. border was still closed. Ironman gave us the option to change to
Continue Reading 50 days until Ironman

Not too long ago I was driving in the car with both junior associates. I was talking to my spouse on the phone (safely via hands free), and in the course of the conversation I used the “s” word–“stupid.” An adorable little 4 year old voice called out from the back seat, “Mommy, we don’t say ‘stupid.'” To which I said, “you are right, I am so sorry.”

This little episode, which has sadly happened more than once, got me thinking about the advice that judges give attorneys. Judges are often very quick to give excellent advice to attorneys, but
Continue Reading Do as I do: Tips on writing briefs … and opinions

Just because the thought comes into your head does not mean it should come out of your mouth. In many situations, it matters what you say next. This is why it’s so important to think before speaking. It doesn’t mean uncomfortable long silences, but it means you need to plan for important conversations, negotiations, or presentations. It also means you need be able to think on your feet.

This can be difficult in emotionally charged situations. But those situations require the most thought and patience.

This was brought home to me a few years ago when an opposing attorney answered
Continue Reading Do you think before speaking?

Contractors in central and southern Arizona know all too well the work hazards that accompany Arizona’s notorious summers. OSHA’s recently launched National Emphasis Program on Outdoor and Indoor Heat Hazards (NEP) provides a useful reminder of the risks of heat stress and how to help workers avoid it.

Before we describe some of the resources at your disposal, let’s briefly discuss the NEP and its application in Arizona. The NEP, which went into effect April 8 and is scheduled to continue for three years, calls for heat-specific workplace inspections in over 70 high-risk industries (including construction) at locations where the
Continue Reading Heat stress: Reducing the safety risks to outdoor workers

Capitalism has done wonders for the world in terms of raising the standard of living for so many people.  Of course, like everything else in this world, capitalism is not an unbridled blessing.  It has its dark side.  When it comes to health care, capitalism has caused a lot of problems.  Among them are the rise of health insurance giants, the growth of hospital chains, big pharma, and the increasing emphasis on medicine as a business whose goal is to make money to name just a few.  Today, I want to discuss how capitalism affects rural hospitals.  Rural hospitals face
Continue Reading Capitalism can be bad for your health

In everything you do you can do better, you can be better. Always. If you disagree you are only fooling yourself and being intellectually dishonest. Investing in yourself is the best investment you can make.

If you put your money in a can and bury it in your backyard, it has no chance to grow. If you invest your money, it has the chance to grow. The corollary is if you don’t take the time to improve yourself, to learn, you will become stagnant and, in this fast-paced world, probably be passed by others. If you work to improve you
Continue Reading We can always do better by working on ourselves

In terms of pro bono service, our profession has a long way to go.

Model Rule of Professional Conduct 6.1 makes clear that “[e]very lawyer has a professional responsibility to provide legal services to those unable to pay.”  To that end, the Rule says that lawyers “should aspire to render at least fifty (50) hours of pro bono publico legal services per year.”

Let’s be honest, though: 50 hours is pretty paltry.  If you take a two-week vacation, you can still satisfy Rule 6.1 with just one pro bono hour per week.  Even for busy lawyers, that’s hardly “aspir[ational].”  Yet
Continue Reading A plea for pro bono service

Rebuttal provides an advocate with an opportunity to point out otherwise undiscussed weaknesses in an opponent’s argument, as well as to emphasize the superiority of the evidence, precedents, and reasoning that supports your client. Five points fundamental points should guide rebuttal:

  • Answer your opponent’s best argument. During your opponent’s argument, you can evaluate your opponent’s framing of the argument and the court’s reaction to them. Many advocates go after the obvious weakness in the argument the court just heard. Doing so can be effective, but, if the argument is available, demonstrating why your opponent’s best argument should not prevail can

  • Continue Reading The art of rebuttal

    Are you the workaholic each of us knows? You know the one. Checking email from the moment they wake up, when they are at lunch with you (rude, by the way), and checking it right before they go to sleep. Every social opportunity is really a networking opportunity with people they probably would not socialize with. All conversations point towards and relate to business, money, etc. You are not sure what their interests are other than work and making money. Or is this you?

    It is no secret that hard work is required for success, and there are times you
    Continue Reading Do you have work/life balance?

    Product or service reviews are common occurrences when operating a business. Consumers express their opinions of a product or service in writing on sites like Yelp, Angie’s List, TripAdvisor, Ripoff Report, or social media. These reviews provide feedback to suppliers and give other consumers real insight into the product or service.

    A company need not have an online presence to receive an online review, whether that review is positive or negative. However, negative reviews have a wide reach and have the potential to damage a brand or a business extensively. Thus, they must be handled effectively.

    Reviewers are protected by
    Continue Reading You got a negative online review – now what?

    Public confidence in the United States Supreme Court is declining because many citizens believe that politics, not law, motivate the Court’s decisions.[1] That belief is not likely to improve, particularly as the Court prepares to issue decisions on abortion, the right to bear arms, and religious liberty, which may be decided by a single vote.

    Part of the problem, aside from the fact that, on divisive social issues, the justices’ decisions so conveniently align with their policy predilections, is that the Court often gets involved when it should defer to the legislative and executive branches. Indeed, judicial deference can
    Continue Reading Why judicial deference matters

    No branch of the U.S. Armed Forces allows an individual with a driving under the influence (DUI) conviction to join. However, there are ways you can work around this rule if you wish to join the military with a DUI on your record. With assistance from a Scottsdale DUI lawyer, you can take advantage of expungements and loopholes to prevent one mistake from ruining your future.
    What’s the Connection Between the Military and DUIs?
    The military is very selective when choosing its new recruits. To join the military, an individual must go through a process known as a “
    Continue Reading Can you join the military with a DUI?

    At Torgenson Law, we always put an emphasis on driver safety in an effort to decrease the chances of personal injury. As an example, we always encourage Arizona citizens to utilize ride share options particularly to avoid drunk or buzzed driving. With that said, Uber and Lyft drivers can and will make mistakes on the roadways. Ride sharing drivers are just as likely to get involved in a car accident as you are. Just like any other car crash or personal injury matter, it is crucial for the victims to follow specific steps to insure that their injury rights are
    Continue Reading Injured in an accident with an Uber or Lyft driver? Don’t panic, follow these steps

    The Law Library is excited to launch an ongoing series in which we will be reviewing newly published books authored by faculty of the Sandra Day O’Connor College of Law. This is the first review in the series.

    As a prosecutor, Valena Beety, author and law professor, had been a carceral feminist, seeking to promote justice for women by incarcerating those who harmed them. But she realized that her passion for promoting justice needed to involve confronting criminal injustices, and freeing the falsely convicted.

    Her new book, Manifesting Justice, illustrates the dangers the legal system presents to innocent people,
    Continue Reading Innocence found: Former prosecutor turned innocence advocate’s new book takes intersectional approach

    The rules for parole differ by state. Generally, parole is the conditional release of an inmate before the end of their sentence. If approved for parole, the inmate will spend the rest of their sentence outside of prison but under community supervision.

    If the parolee violates any terms of their parole, the court may revoke parole and send them back to prison. The court may also reinstate parole but add stricter rules and conditions for remaining on parole.
    What Are the Types of Parole in Arizona?
    Most criminal offenses may qualify for parole. However, the Truth in Sentencing Bill exempted
    Continue Reading How does parole work in Arizona?