Whether it’s a traffic ticket or a DUI situation, hiring an attorney can be stressful. Despite that stress, it is important to select your attorney carefully and prepare information for your first meeting. An attorney can do a better job defending you with all the facts.
Tip #1: Your legal health is as important as your medical health! What do I mean by that? Research your attorney’s qualifications. Is there experience with your type of case? Do not hire your Uncle Bob’s sister-in-law, the divorce attorney, to handle a DUI case! Chances are that she won’t have the technical/scientific/court familiarity that you need to successfully resolve your issue. What background does he or she have in going to court? Is your prospective attorney even a litigator? How many years has she or he been practicing law? If you are facing a DUI or criminal charge whether misdemeanor or felony, having an attorney with prior experience as a prosecutor can be a huge plus. Is there a specialty in a certain type of law? Again, you do not want to hire a real estate attorney to handle your criminal or traffic matter. Your license and sometimes your freedom is at stake. I can’t stress this enough. You would not hire a dermatologist to handle your ulcer surgery! One thing I continually stress to clients who come to me to handle a case after they are unhappy with their current attorney is that you must take the same care with your legal health as you do with your medical health. Failing to do that can and often does have dire legal consequences. Much information on a prospective attorney can be found on their website or in search engines or through a phone call.
Tip #2: Prepare for your first meeting as a job interview. Arrive 15 minutes early to fill out any paperwork and have your personal information with you. Don’t plan on going to see your attorney while on the way home from carpooling your three kids. You need to focus for this meeting. Turn off your cell phone and listen. As an early step in the lawyer/client relationship, the first impression is important. Do not be intimidated or leave out information because you don’t think it important. Ask questions!
Tip #3: Organize your information. Bring all paperwork with you in a neat file. If you have witnesses or an alibi, be sure to have their contact information with you. If you have text messages or emails that constitute correspondence relevant to your case, bring it with you.
Tip #4: Be honest. Your attorney needs to know all details to properly defend you. Surprises in the courtroom are not to your benefit. Make sure that your attorney is fully prepped on important facts.
Tip #5: Take notes and ask questions. Your lawyer will provide information and direction about what you need to do. Write it down, so that you can review it later and prepare as needed. You should also ask questions about the process:
- What will this cost and are there payment arrangements?
- What options do I have?
- Do I need to go to court or do you just go?
- Will I lose my license?
- Do I have to attend classes?
- Will I be able to drive to work?
By following these tips, you will have a productive partnership with your attorney.
The Law Offices of Laura J. Morask provide full legal consultations in a rush-free, non-intimidating atmosphere. We spend as much time as you need reviewing questions, your rights and responsibilities and what we can do for your particular legal situation.
Hazing prevention seminar participants: Todd Wessell, Hannah Kline, Tom Delehanty, Darnell McCoy, Jessica Henry, Sergeant Kenneth Boudreau, Dr. Gina Lee-Olukoya, Laura Morask, B. Eliot Hopkins, Detective Gregory Jacobson
As a Maine Township trustee and a concerned parent, I am committed to working with our community. I was honored to be the moderator at the Anti-Hazing Seminar, which I feel brought much-needed attention to this ongoing problem.
In attendance were several keynote speakers that explained the repercussions of hazing and how it can affect both children and their parents. They reviewed the issue from the student’s perspective, including how the importance of belonging can cause them to accept hazing. I was deeply touched by the parents that flew in from other states to share their stories and the young people who had the courage to talk about their experiences of being bullied.
Laura Morask (seated, moderator of the anti-hazing seminar) listens as Pam Champion speaks.
Specific ideas were offered on how to prevent and monitor hazing in our schools and community. I want to thank the school administrators, law enforcement officials and hazing experts who participated. An even greater thank you goes to the parents and students who had the bravery to tell their stories to support putting a stop to this troubling trend. What an honor it was to be featured on WBBM Radio and countless articles, both national and local.
Journal & Topics article
Maine Township will be sponsoring an Anti-Hazing Forum this Wednesday, May 22 at the Des Plaines Leisure Center, located at 2222 Birch Street. Please join me, as well as B.Elliott Hopkins, a board member of Hazing Prevention.Org, and is the director of the National Federation of State High School Associations Student Leadership Conference, Dr. Gina Lee-Olukoyand, who serves on the board of directors of Hazing Prevention.Org, and directs the Novak Institute for Hazing Prevention. Also in attendance will be Sergeant Kenneth Boudreau, Administrative Sergeant/Commanding Officer of the Chicago Police Dept.’s Gang Enforcement unit, Detective Gregory Jacobson, a homicide detective for the Chicago Police Dept. and Mr. Tom Delehanty, who currently serves as a national marketing director for Sequel Youth and Family Services.This is an ongoing problem that exists not only in our community, but in Grade Schools, High Schools and Colleges across the nation. Let’s take on the challenge together to protect our children. Hope to see you there!
As posted in The Daily Herald the Academy Awards are coming to Niles. Back by popular demand, Maine Township Republican Women will host their annual Spring Fashion Show. Join us this Saturday in an afternoon of Fashion, beautiful flowers, good food and friends! Come see some of your elected officials walk the runway in clothing provided by two Boutiques right here in Park Ridge.
I am excited to announce that a new speaker has joined our panel at the upcoming Anti-Hazing Forum on Wednesday, May 22. Dr. Gina Lee-Olukoya, Associate Dean of Students at the University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign, has expressed an interest in contributing, and we happily welcome her to our team. In her role at the U of I, Lee-Olukoya provides oversight and support to Fraternity and Sorority Affairs and is also a member of the Board of Directors of Hazing Prevention.Org., a renowned beacon in the fight against hazing. Lee-Olukoya’s insight and expertise will certainly prove to be an enriching addition to our program. The 90-minute forum will be held at the Des Plaines Park District’s Leisure Center, located at 2222 Birch St., in Des Plaines, and will commence at 7 p.m. Refreshments will be available after the program accompanied by a question and answer session. I look forward to seeing you at this very important community event. Learn more.
Laura Morask, Jan Provenzano and Allison Poppone prepare for the 3rd annual Maine Township Fashion Show.
Get out the glam! Support the local retailers! For the third year in a row, I am chairperson for an event that combines fun, fashion and the community. The annual Maine Township Fashion Show offers a great way to participate locally and have a great time.
The fun part—it’s an Academy Awards theme where we will be giving awards for the best celebrity look-a-like outfit with a great lunch from Chateau Ritz.
The community part includes fashions and flowers provided by local retailers, including Uptown Girlz, Natalie’s Boutique and Pesches’s flowers. Models will include township officials and special dignitaries, such as State Treasurer Dan Rutherford, 20th District State Representative Michael McAuliffe and Highway Commissioner Bob Provenzano to name just a few.
As you know, I am a strong believer in events that bring together government and the local community (check out my Gang Awareness seminar). While this fashion show is a more light-hearted event, the theme of using community resources to support our local businesses is just as important.
Tickets for a “Day at the Oscars” (May 4, Chateau Ritz, Niles) are available by contacting me at 847-696-7185 or Jan Provenzano at 847-390-8964. All proceeds will benefit the local women’s club. Whether you choose the classic beauty of Elizabeth Taylor or the hip look of Zooey Deschanel, it’s your chance to be a star! Learn more.
As one of your Maine Township Trustees, one of my proudest accomplishments has been my initiation of The Anti-Gang Education Forums. As I maintain involvement in what is happening in our neighborhoods, there is both a noticeable and gaining presence of Bullying and Hazing, not only in our schools, but also as a national problem. It is important that parents are aware of what is happening in our community, due to the fact that most children are not informing their parents about what they are experiencing. As an epidemic, this truly needs to be addressed and I am honored to be part of The Anti-Hazing and Bullying Forum on May 22. One of the speakers, B. Elliott Hopkins, director of Sports, Sanctioning and Educational Services for the National Federation of State High School Associations (NFHS) will join Sergeant Kenneth Boudreau and Detective Greg Jacobson along with additional panelists at the forum. If you are able to attend, please mark your calendar. Together we can be the voice for our children as they face these senseless acts of abuse.
I would like to send a big Thank You to all of those who went to the polls to vote last week. It has been an honor to serve our community as one of your Maine Township Trustees and I will continue to do all that I can to ensure your trust in me. Let us move forward together as we keep Maine Township a safe and truly special place to live.
Journal Election Endorsements, Park Ridge Journal
Wednesday, April 3,2013
MAINE REPUBLICANS DESERVE REELECTION
For decades, members of the local Republican Party have run Maine Township government regularly earning the support of voters to provide such services as helping people in need of financial and food assistance, offering programs for senior citizens, maintaining roads in the unincorporated areas and advocating on behalf of local residents matters pertaining to land use and property assessment reduction.
Every four years, a slate of Democrats usually emerges to provide voters a choice by claiming that they can manage township government more efficiently and at less cost.
What we’ve found by listening to the Democratic candidates is that they are always well-meaning and in most cases fairly qualified. The problem is that the ideas they put forth are not strong or convincing enough to warrant tossing out the incumbents who are running things well.
In next Tuesday’s election, the Democratic field is comprised of four trustee candidates and a township clerk hopeful. The Republicans are offering a full slate of four incumbent trustee candidates, along with candidates for supervisor, clerk, assessor and highway commissioner.
The Journal & Topics Newspaper enthusiastically recommends the reelection of Supervisor Carol Teschky, Highway Commissioner Robert Provenzano, Assessor Thomas Rueckert, Clerk Gary Warner and for trustee, Peter Gialamas, Walter Kazmierczak, Laura Morask and Susan Moylan Krey. They’ve displayed sound leadership the last four years by maintaining—and in some cases—improving on a high level of service and openness in government.
My commitment to fighting gangs and creating community awareness of how to protect families remains strong. My work last year in gathering together law enforcement, township officials and residents for a Gang Awareness seminar made a strong difference in the community and I plan to continue these no-cost programs when reelected. I was so honored that Township Perspective profiled this program as an example of a strong state program. The program has helped fight crime and bring together the community, supporting the ongoing battle against gangs. I will continue to be a Leader in the Fight Against Gangs to protect our neighborhoods.