Rapid City Legal Issues Blog

How effective are drug courts?

Though not currently available everywhere, drug courts are programs that are sometimes available to those who receive convictions for drug crimes. Typically, drug courts offer treatment and counseling to participants who must make regular appearances before a judge in conjunction with regular drug testing, and if you take part in one, it may help you beat your addiction once and for all.

In addition to helping addicts stay out of prison and curb their addictions by essentially forcing them to abstain from drugs, drug courts, per the National Association of Drug Court Professionals, offer numerous additional benefits. More specifically, drug courts:

Does a DUI charge hurt my chances at child custody?

Yes, being charged with a DUI can negatively affect your chances of getting child custody, whether it is full custody or joint custody. The extent to which it influences custody depends on factors such as any other charges or convictions you have faced, your relationship with the co-parent, the circumstances surrounding the charge and the strength of the evidence against you.

The "good" news is that a DUI charge normally does not affect legal custody, which lets you make decisions about your children's medical care, religious education and cultural education, among other things. It is physical custody, the issue of where the children live, that you are more likely to lose out on. The ways in which a DUI charge affect physical custody can be indirect and far-reaching, too.

3 tips on emotionally preparing for your divorce

When you know your marriage is nearing the end, it can be devastating. The thought of divorcing from your spouse can cause a lot of pain and grief. It can seem impossible to manage the wave of emotions that come with divorce. However, if you make the effort, you can weather the storm and heal. 

Divorce can cause you to hyper-focus on the despair and forget everything else. But if you try each day to direct your attention to certain aspects of your life, you will be better off. Here are some tips for emotionally preparing for divorce. 

What to do financially when divorce becomes inevitable

When it becomes apparent that you and your spouse are no longer on the same page in your marriage and unable to bridge the gaps, it may be time for you to separate. In those circumstances, even if you are not entirely sure if divorce is the answer, you should make sure your finances are in order to protect your future. 

There are a number of ways you can prepare your finances for divorce. 

How to emotionally survive your divorce

Divorce is often one of the most stressful and difficult experiences you will ever have. It is common to feel helpless, confused and angry. While these feelings are normal, you do not have to let them control you. With the right tools, you can get through your divorce by focusing on the positives and moving on.

While you may not be able to completely eliminate your negative emotions, there are several steps you can take to cope with the pain and find a sense of hope. Keep reading to learn how you can get through this.

You were charged with DUI — and not even driving?

The laws for driving under the influence are quite strict in South Dakota. For example, law enforcement can still charge you with DUI if you parked your car, but they found you intoxicated while sitting behind the wheel and in control of the ignition key.

If this is your first offense, the court could revoke your license for up to one year. The penalty is automatic if this is your second or third offense. However, you need to be able to drive because there is no other way for you to get to work. What you need now is sound legal advice and support.

Explaining divorce to your children

Divorce takes an emotional toll on you and your spouse, regardless of how the marriage ends. Whether it is through betrayal, abuse or just a decision to move on, it affects everyone around you. Perhaps no party is more vulnerable to the complicated divorce process than your children.

You can help your children get through the process unscathed emotionally if you are prepared. The first step is to tell your children about the split in the right way.

Using South Dakota's guidelines to develop a co-parenting plan

While you and your spouse may have good intentions when you sit down together to discuss child custody during your divorce, it can be all too easy to allow personal feelings to intrude and derail your attempts at an agreement. The South Dakota court system takes the best interests of your child seriously, though, and provides you with some detailed parenting guidelines that may help you stay on track.

Creating a schedule

Your goal should be a calendar that allows your child to spend as much quality time as possible with each parent. This not only includes the regular schedule, with details about childcare, weekends, evenings and special days, but also reasonable vacation times and holiday plans. Neither of you may disrupt this schedule or deny visitation because of unpaid child support or some other issue regarding the court order.

4 things to know about women and DUIs

Men are generally far more likely to be arrested for DUIs than women are. This does not mean that women are exempt from such charges, though. According to the Traffic Resource Center, in fact, arrest rates for women have been on the rise while rates for men have been on the decline. This is an alarming trend, and if you are a woman who has recently been arrest and charged with driving under the influence, there are four things you should know.

Issues with the credibility of child witnesses

Eyewitnesses are no longer the beacons of truth people once thought they were. For example, when stressful and unexpected situations unfold quickly, it is unrealistic to expect people to remember details well. Yet that was exactly what happened for many years. On the other hand, quite a few people have always approached the accounts of child witnesses with some skepticism, and today, the credibility problems of young witnesses are even more well-known.

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