Questions tagged [united-states]

For questions specific to the United States as a whole, or that span multiple state jurisdictions. If your question is related to a specific state then you should use that state's tag instead (or as well).

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36
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2answers
12k views

Why would someone get a fine when using a disabled parking space when the disabled person is not in the car?

An article in LA Times about someone parking on a disabled parking space without the disabled person being in the car: (...) I saw a woman pull into a disabled parking space and begin to exit her ...
35
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4answers
8k views

Can you legally move a dead body to preserve it as evidence?

A fisherman is heading upstream in his boat, and sees a human corpse float past. Obviously even if it wasn't murder, it still warrants a 911 call because it was a death. The river however, is steadily ...
35
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3answers
31k views

Can women also go shirtless in public legally?

Do women have the same rights as men to walk on the beach or sidewalk topless where men are also walking bare-chested without being discriminated against? If a woman is arrested or asked to leave by ...
35
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5answers
17k views

Is the banning of large events in the USA constitutional?

Recently several US cities banned large gatherings of events such as listed here. Given that the 1st amendment of the US constitution states Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment ...
35
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3answers
8k views

Is youtube-dl takedown due to their tests which use copyrighted content?

The DMCA takedown notice posted on GitHub's youtube-dl page seems to be primarily based on the fact that youtube-dl is expressly advertised as a tool to "circumvent the technological protection ...
35
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1answer
7k views

Do I have legal rights against a company that offered me a raise to not leave, and then promptly fired me after turning down the other offer?

I was just informed of this situation that occurred somewhere by a co-worker, and was wondering what the legal ramifications are (U.S. Law). To be clear, the scenario is as follows: I tell my boss I'...
35
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1answer
8k views

USA: Is “I am not a lawyer” disclaimer generally necessary?

Is it legally necessary to disclaim "I am not a lawyer" when engaging in casual conversation, writing Internet posts, etc. to avoid civil or criminal liability for one's comments? Specifically, in ...
34
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7answers
13k views

What if a restaurant suddenly cannot accept credit cards, and the customer has no cash?

If a restaurant normally accepts credit cards, and a customer eats a meal there, then tries to pay with his valid credit card, and the cashier says the credit card system is down and they can only ...
33
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4answers
10k views

Does a private citizen in the US have the right to make a “Contact the Police” poster?

Imagine the following hypothetical situation. Assume the location is in the United States. Mary had a credit card stolen by a suspect. The suspect used the credit card at a store. The manager of the ...
33
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7answers
16k views

Pregnant spouse slipped abortion pills unknowingly. What would the legal ramifications be?

Suppose a partner to a pregnant woman gave her an abortion pill which successfully aborted the pregnancy. Suppose that this was done in a non-violent way, unbeknownst to the woman. One could argue ...
33
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4answers
21k views

Does ripping up the only signed contract form invalidate it?

Suppose I sign a contract in front of witnesses, but then immediately tear it up. Is the contract still binding?
33
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2answers
10k views

What are the rules on businesses that wish to only hire attractive females?

Many businesses feature beautiful female employees as part of their business plan and service offering. Examples include: Hooter's waitresses Sportclips stylists A small chain of drive-thru smoothies ...
33
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2answers
18k views

Does being engaged (to be married) carry any legal significance?

Being married carries specific legal consequences, e.g. spouses typically are treated differently under tax law, divorce property law, inheritance law, have rights regarding medical visitation and ...
32
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4answers
137k views

How to prove I live in a specific address?

https://www.flhsmv.gov/ddl/address.html I need to provide proof of address for the DMV, but the process can be difficult because: I live with someone else; I do not pay rent/utilities; and they will ...
32
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4answers
8k views

Can a soldier be court-martialed for revealing intelligence while in duress?

Can a soldier be court-martialed for revealing intelligence while in duress? Let's say a soldier is captured and then tortured by Russian agents to reveal critical top-secret intelligence to the ...
31
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6answers
7k views

Is it legal to go take my license plates off a car I sold, without realizing I should keep my plates?

I sold a car a year ago in TX and didn't realize that I should take the plates off. The buyer has taken full advantage of this and is racking up lots of tolls in my name. Fortunately I'm able to get ...
31
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3answers
11k views

Why does the victim have to press charges?

Case in point that was in the news: "BART identifies man in viral video of racist attack on train", East Bay Times A California man attacked a stranger while expressing his hatred of the victim's ...
31
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3answers
14k views

In the US, is it legal to lie to a business such as a hotel to obtain a discount?

Let's say a hotel chain or a restaurant provides a 50% discount to anyone aged over 70. Would it be legal (as in, no criminal charges could arise from that action) for a patron to lie to the hotel/...
31
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4answers
4k views

When is ignorance a legal defense?

In the United States, under what circumstances is ignorance of a law or legal principle a defense against legal action?
31
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1answer
4k views

Held indefinitely for contempt of court?

Tommy Gregory Thompson is a former deep-sea treasure hunter and is about to mark his fifth year in jail for contempt of court for refusing to disclose the whereabouts of 500 missing coins made from ...
30
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5answers
11k views

Should I serve jury duty when I have no respect for the judge?

My son was once sentenced to 3 years in prison in a particular case. The individual(s) that took him to court had deep personal connections with law officials in our small county. This seems to have ...
30
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9answers
7k views

How will anyone know if an employer fires an employee for an illegal reason?

From the Wiki article "At-Will Employment": At-will employment is a term used in U.S. labor law for contractual relationships in which an employee can be dismissed by an employer for any ...
30
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2answers
9k views

Why does Disney omit the year in their copyright notices?

I was trying to sort a stack of movies chronologically. Most boxes contain a copyright notice e.g. “(c) 1985 Acme Pictures LLC“. However, Walt Disney Pictures consistently omits the year, e.g. “(c) ...
30
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3answers
8k views

Do I (witness) have to respond to email from defendant's lawyer?

I witnessed (heard) an alleged crime a long while back and was recorded as a witness by the police. Recently, I received an email from the defendant's lawyer requesting contact information and asking ...
30
votes
7answers
9k views

Does the government control what time it is?

Does the government control what time it is? Recently, I read that the west coast states are considering dropping Daylight Savings Time. Apparently, the process is first for the states to agree, and ...
30
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1answer
10k views

Jurors not allowed to talk to each other during the trial?

Apparently many judges instruct jurors not to discuss the case in progress. What is the rationale for this, other than just yet another tactic to marginalize juries and prevent them from trying cases? ...
30
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3answers
15k views

Can a US President, after impeachment and removal, be re-elected or re-appointed?

This answer in its present form states If Donald Trump were impeached and blocked from running again (which is one of the things that impeachment can do, disqualify from office)... Is that true? ...
30
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2answers
4k views

What does it mean if your apartment is in two cities at once

I discovered that the border between two cities runs through an apartment that I am renting. There are two official parcels, one in one city (City A) and one in another (City B), they are both in the ...
29
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3answers
8k views

Can the President of the United States pardon proactively?

President Trump's administration has just formally started the transition process. He is now officially a lame-duck President. It is common for outgoing Presidents to grant pardons in this last phase ...
29
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5answers
9k views

Can a judge suggest to the jury that a witness is lying?

I was recently party to a preliminary hearing in a criminal case in which a 911 call was played. The content of the 911 call was very beneficial to the defendant. During the hearing, the judge said ...
29
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3answers
10k views

If the President's power to grant pardons is absolute, could he face any consequences?

Does the Presidential power to pardon include the power to avoid any consequences? Consider this hypothetical situation: An extremely rich individual (a US citizen) gets involved in a sordid love ...
29
votes
2answers
15k views

Are employers legally allowed to pay employees in goods and services equal to or greater than the minimum wage?

In the United States, full-time employees (not contractors) must be paid a minimum wage per hour. Assuming both parties agree to it, are they legally allowed to be paid in goods and services equal to ...
29
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2answers
3k views

Copyright a Land Feature?

This sign is posted on private property in New Mexico, USA at: 35.47212, -106.15719 COPYRIGHT NOTICE Photos and videos taken of Lone Butte Mountain may not be directly or indirectly published, ...
29
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4answers
10k views

How can the US president give an order to a civilian?

I remember reading that the US president can give an order to a civilian via some special letter. (The example given involved an IT company employee ordered to install a back-door in the company's ...
29
votes
3answers
121k views

Is it illegal to throw away the previous tenant's mail?

Say I move into an apartment. And over the next months and years, I keep receiving mail for the previous tenant, whom I do not know. This is understandably annoying. The easiest and most convenient ...
29
votes
2answers
5k views

Is it legal in the USA to pay someone for their work if you don't know who they are?

Let's say you go on a freelancing platform and hire a designer to make a website for you. They never reveal their real name, photo or location and payment is requested via Bitcoin. The job completes ...
28
votes
3answers
5k views

Does someone in the U.S. illegally have the same rights in court as a U.S. citizen?

So right now in my home state of Iowa, an undocumented immigrant is on trial for murder charges. Apparently he wasn't read his rights when he was being investigated. Whether that is true or not, does ...
28
votes
5answers
8k views

Is it illegal to market a product as if it would protect against something, while never making explicit claims?

I've recently come across an advertisement online of a product that stated "Most people have heard of the horror of [bad thing] or even [worse thing]. Protect yourself with [our product] today!&...
28
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6answers
6k views

Is the requirement to have positive attitude discriminatory?

Many companies list "positive attitude" as a requirement for the candidates, including job positions that have nothing to do with customer service or management (for which jobs it could be ...
28
votes
4answers
18k views

If someone orders a pizza in the US and doesn't pay for it, could they be arrested?

If you were to order a pizza in the US and didn't pay for it afterwards, could you be arrested?
28
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6answers
6k views

What's the most crucial issue when deciding Senator Cruz's citizenship?

Donald Trump is threatening to sue Senator Cruz for his citizenship issue. I understand Senator Cruz was born to an American mother and Cuban father in Canada . I understand it would not be an issue ...
28
votes
2answers
7k views

Job interview adjustment request was ignored. Is this an act of discrimination?

Imaginary situation: a candidate arrives to a job interview for a position of software engineer. She had notified the HR manager that she has severe mobility problems and thus can't move around unless ...
28
votes
7answers
11k views

Can I booby-trap my property against police?

Inspired by this question: Suppose I'm paranoid (perhaps justifiably) that law enforcement personnel might conduct a warranted raid of my property. So I setup booby-traps that are designed to either: ...
27
votes
6answers
7k views

What prevents laws from being interpreted pedantically?

In some discussion on another StackExchange, 18 US Code §1464 came up, which states: Whoever utters any obscene, indecent, or profane language by means of radio communication shall be fined under ...
27
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4answers
9k views

What happens to Donald Trump if he refuses to turn over his financial records?

Headlines for 2021 February 22 read "Supreme Court Approves Subpoena for Trump's Financial Records". Since the Supreme Court has now ruled on the matter, I am not aware of any other body to ...
27
votes
4answers
9k views

Do Legal Documents Require Signing In Standard Pen Colors?

I have a question as to whether or not legal documents signed in non standard pen colors (Anything other than blue or black) are valid. I carry a purple pen around that use for everyday writing tasks,...
27
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2answers
8k views

Is a list of the most common English words copyrightable under US law?

I am currently interested in doing some research performing various measurements and algorithms on the most common words in the English language. I have found a few good word lists online that would ...
27
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5answers
17k views

Are judges immune from prosecution of crimes committed while acting as a judge?

Discussing the civil lawsuit to Hans Reiser's murder conviction, Wikipedia states: "Judges ... are immune to lawsuits regarding their official conduct." In the United States, is that true? Surely,...
27
votes
4answers
5k views

Where is the line at which the producer of a product cannot be blamed for the stupidity of the user of that product?

It seems to me that no matter how thorough your warnings are, there will always be someone foolish enough to get themselves hurt in a way you couldn't have expected. Is there a line somewhere at ...
27
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2answers
3k views

How far can the meanings of commonly used words be redefined by a legislature?

Most people understand "operating a motor vehicle" as driving, until they are arrested for DUI while sleeping off in their turned off car. Most people understand "loaded weapon" as ...