Jacksonville Criminal LawyerJacksonville Attorney Handling Criminal, Family, and Injury Matters
Certain legal proceedings can have tremendous consequences that have the power to ripple through the rest of your life. For instance, if you are charged with a drug crime, you may be facing the possibility of a prison term, along with difficulties in obtaining jobs, housing, and education. If you get a divorce, your financial security and relationships with your children may hang in the balance. If you are injured in a car accident, your family may lose vital income and incur expensive medical bills. If you need a Jacksonville criminal lawyer or advocacy during a divorce or after an accident, you should consult Attorney Kevin M. Cobbin. He is dedicated to providing outstanding legal representation and actively making a difference in his community.
Prosecutors must establish criminal charges beyond a reasonable doubt to secure a conviction. This is a difficult standard, and you should not assume that you will be convicted. There are various procedural or substantive defenses that you may be able to raise. For instance, in some cases, it is possible to bring a motion to suppress evidence that was gathered in violation of your Fourth or Fifth Amendment rights. However, only a knowledgeable and experienced attorney can thoroughly investigate a case and uncover all the potential strategies.DUI
In Florida, you can be convicted of DUI if you were controlling a vehicle under the influence of alcohol, illegal controlled substances, or harmful chemical substances, or if you had a blood or breath alcohol level of at least .08. For a first offense DUI, you can face up to six months in jail and other penalties, such as fines and license revocation. The penalties are harsher for subsequent convictions and when certain factors are present. For any DUI charge, though, you should consult a Jacksonville criminal attorney who can protect your rights.Drug Crimes
Under Florida Statutes Section 893.13, it is illegal to sell, make, deliver, or possess with the intent to sell, make, or deliver a controlled substance. Controlled substances include cocaine, heroin, morphine, fentanyl, LSD, methamphetamine, and oxycodone. If you are caught with more than a threshold amount of a certain drug, you can be charged with drug trafficking. These charges are especially serious because courts do not have discretion over sentencing when a threshold amount of a substance is involved.
Florida gun crimes include improper exhibition, possession or discharge of a destructive device, possession of a firearm as a convicted felon, and carrying a concealed weapon. What a prosecutor must prove depends on the crime being charged. Under Section 790.01, for example, if you are not licensed when you carry a concealed weapon or device on your person, you commit a misdemeanor of the first degree. In addition to specific gun crimes, there is also a firearms enhancement, the 10-20-Life Law. A criminal attorney in Jacksonville can help you seek to avoid the harsh application of this law. It exposes a defendant to the risk of a mandatory minimum sentence if they engaged in various activities involving a firearm while committing certain serious crimes.Homicide
Homicide is a broad category that covers crimes such as first- and second-degree murder, manslaughter, and vehicular homicide. Malice distinguishes murder from manslaughter. Under Section 782.04, murder in the first degree can be charged if a killing is perpetrated according to a premeditated design to achieve the death of the person killed. It can also be charged when an unlawful killing is committed by someone perpetrating certain serious offenses, such as sexual battery, robbery, human trafficking, or arson. It can also be charged in cases in which the killing resulted from the unlawful distribution of any of certain controlled substances when the controlled substance is shown to be the proximate cause of death of the user. You should immediately contact a criminal lawyer in Jacksonville if you are being investigated for homicide.Family Law
Florida family law matters may involve issues such as prenuptial agreements, divorce, alimony, timesharing, child support, and paternity. In many cases, a prenuptial agreement provides rules for how property division, retirement accounts, life insurance, and alimony will be handled during the marriage or if the couple gets divorced. A prenuptial agreement must meet certain formalities to be valid and cannot cover certain topics. For instance, you cannot agree to child support or a specific timesharing arrangement in a prenuptial agreement.Divorce
Florida is one of the states that have abolished “fault” as a basis for getting divorced. You can dissolve your marriage if you can show that it is irretrievably broken. You will need to show that at least one spouse has lived in the state for the six months immediately before filing your divorce petition. Even though a divorce is not based on fault, it can be hotly contested. The spouses may disagree over issues affecting their children or property, and each spouse should hire an attorney in that situation.Child Custody (Timesharing)
Florida courts determine child custody according to a child’s best interests and the particular facts of the case. Sometimes the parents can reach an agreement prior to filing their case. However, if they cannot agree, the court will create a plan. A parenting plan sets forth how the parents will share responsibilities and decision-making authority for their children. It will specify how much time a child spends with each parent. It also designates which parent will be responsible for decisions involving medical, school, religious, and extracurricular matters.Child Support
Child support is a court-ordered obligation in which a parent is required to financially support a child in terms of care, maintenance, education, or training. Child support guidelines presumptively establish the amount that the court must order as child support or when modifying child support. The court generally can order support that varies by a maximum of five percent in either direction. Under Section 61.30, factors to consider include the standard of living, the children’s needs, the ages of the children, and each parent’s financial status and ability.Personal Injury
A personal injury lawsuit may arise whenever someone injures another person through their careless actions. As a plaintiff, you will need to establish negligence. This means that the defendant owed you a duty to use reasonable care, the defendant breached that duty, and the breach caused your injuries. If liability can be established, you can recover compensatory damages, such as medical costs, lost income, and pain and suffering.Car Accidents
Common causes of car accidents include distracted driving, drunk driving, excessive speeding, failing to yield, and failing to adjust to weather or road conditions. Florida is a no-fault state. After a car accident, you will need to turn first to your personal injury protection (PIP) coverage. However, you can pursue damages from an at-fault driver in court if you meet a certain threshold of serious injuries. Sometimes multiple parties are responsible for an accident, and only a skilled attorney can identify all the appropriate defendants and bring them into the litigation.Slip and Fall Accidents
Property owners are supposed to keep their property reasonably safe for visitors. Their level of responsibility depends on the reason why a visitor comes to the property. The greatest duty is owed to you if you are a public or business invitee. Many of these cases involve proving that a property owner had constructive notice of a hazard. Constructive notice can be shown if the dangerous condition existed for so long that the business should have known of the condition, or if the condition occurred regularly enough that it was foreseeable.Wrongful Death
Some of the most serious accidents lead to a tragic loss of life. If a loved one has died in a car crash, a slip and fall, or another accident, you may be able to bring a wrongful death claim under Florida law. These claims usually must be brought within two years of the death of the victim, so you should consult an attorney promptly. Damages in wrongful death claims are partly based on the relationship of the plaintiff to the victim, and they may include lost support and services, lost companionship, and medical and funeral expenses, among others.Retain a Jacksonville Attorney to Protect Your Rights
Certain legal matters may be life-changing, and assistance from a knowledgeable and experienced attorney can make a huge difference. If you need a Jacksonville criminal lawyer, or representation in a divorce or a personal injury claim, you should consult Kevin M. Cobbin. He represents people throughout Duval County and the surrounding areas. Call him at (904) 357-8448 or complete our online form.