Underage Drinking and Minor in Possession

Underage drinkingUnderage drinking problem is a major public health issue in the United States. Adolescents want to overcome social anxiety, lower their inhibitions in social situations, reduce stress and worries, increase courage, feelings and power, enhance sexual attractiveness and performance, satisfy the thrill seeking desires through alcohol consumption. This issue became one of the most well known cause of numerous legal disputes.

Alcohol consumption by youth in the United States (also known as underage drinking) is a term used for the concept of alcohol use by anyone under the minimum legal drinking age of 21. A lot of states have a minor in possession (MIP) – criminal offense concerning alcohol and drugs found in possession of minors, although some details regarding punishments vary from state-to-state. Some states provide a very strict strategy towards those who violate the MIP law and prosecute its felons; others have a different point of view about juvenile justice, providing probation by entering a court-ordered diversionary program and offering medical care. It is typically a misdemeanor for anyone under 21 to possess alcohol. Besides the fact that this is the minimum legal age to buy alcohol in all states, details tend to vary.

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How to Deal with Botox Injury?

botoxEverybody wants to be perfect. We persistently tend to achieve success in our careers, have perfect families and flawless appearances. However, what does “perfect” even mean? And how far are you ready to go on this never-ending struggle for physical attractiveness?

Nowadays, tabloids and magazines set unimaginable beauty standards, making average people feel inferior. As a result, beauty industry makes a large amount of money, appealing to our body dissatisfaction through consumerism. Botox is one of the most popular beauty tools, mainly practiced by women of different ages around the world. As a matter of fact, Botox injections jumped 748 percent since 2000, which tells us that contemporary women exhaustively undergo different procedures in order to fix flaws they don’t have. Continue reading

Employment: How to Use Social Media in Your Job Search

A recent Forbes article written by Jacquelyn Smith entitled: How Social Media Can Help (Or Hurt) You In Your Job Search, provides some interesting insights into the world of employment opportunities through Social Media.

Most people know that Social Media is not just for connecting with one of your childhood or high school friends you haven’t seen for ages, and sharing what has been going on in your life. Nowadays you can use this on-line tool to maximum advantage to your career prospects.

In addition to a résumé, cover letter, or interview, many employers successfully use Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, and Google+ to get a more objective impression of a potential candidate or to connect with their current and former colleagues. These websites are also good resources for you to learn about companies you are interested in and hear about job openings at once.

This explains why nearly half of all job seekers are active on social networks every day, and more than a third of all employers and hiring managers use these sites in their hiring process.

According to Lee Hecht Harrison, a career transition and talent development consulting firm, 48% percent of job seekers are active on social networking sites on a daily basis, 19% log on about two or three times per week, 22% use social networking sites one to three times per month, or less. Only 11% of job seekers never use social networking websites.

Helene Cavalli, Marketing Vice President at Lee Hecht Harrison, and Greg Simpson, Senior Vice President at Lee Hecht Harrison, stated that Social Media is an increasingly important tool in a job search strategy, and job seekers must understand how hiring managers and recruiters are using social media in all phases of the selection process.

Last year, CareerBuilder.com surveyed 2,303 hiring managers and human resource professionals throughout the U.S. via an on-line poll asking if, how, and why they include social media into their hiring process.

According to the CareerBuilder survey, nearly two in five companies (37 %) use social networking sites to research job candidates. 15 % of the employers, who do not research candidates on social media, said their company prohibits the practice. 11% report they do not currently use social media to screen, but plan to start.

Though 12% of hiring mangers said they are using Social Media to uncover reasons not to hire a candidate, most said they are trying to dig deeper than the traditional interview to find out: 65% whether the job seeker presents himself or herself professionally, 51% whether the candidate is a good fit for the company culture, 45% want to learn more about the candidate’s qualifications, and 35% want to see if the candidate is well-rounded.

So, Jacquelyn Smith advises those job seekers who use social networks to be careful.

While candidates may be aware that their social profiles are public to employers’ watchful eyes, they may not realize their on-line personas are costing them a job. 34% of employers said the following social media discoveries led to a candidate not getting the gig:

“If you choose to share content publicly on social media, make sure it’s working to your advantage,” says Rosemary Haefner, Vice President of Human Resources at CareerBuilder. “Take down or secure anything that could potentially be viewed by an employer as unprofessional and share content that highlights your accomplishments and qualifications in a positive way.”

Brad Schepp, co-author of How To Find A Job On LinkedIn, Facebook, Twitter and Google+, says: Make sure any profiles you write are free of typos, the information is coherent and applicable to your industry [or job you’re trying to land], and your photos present you in a favorable light. You can verify the applicability of the information by checking profiles of others in the same field.”

Not all employers use social media to screen candidates out. 29% of hiring managers said some discoveries have led to them extending an offer:This means the job seekers shouldn’t just focus on hiding or removing inappropriate content. They should work on creating on-line profiles that do a really good job of representing their skills and experience in the workplace.

Brad Schepp shared tips for finding a job using social networking sites. Here’s what he suggests:

1. Create Relevant Profiles

Convincing, professional profiles, which include your job history, should demonstrate not only what you’ve accomplished, but where your strengths are and what you can offer future employers.

2. Network

Connect with others in your industry. LinkedIn’s Groups are an excellent place to do this, Schepp says. Join those groups that appear especially active and vibrant, and then introduce yourself to the other members.

3. Be Engaged

Follow companies in your field on LinkedIn and Twitter so you’re automatically notified about new hires, product developments, and other news. “Like” companies you’re interested in and join the conversation about industry trends on Facebook. This is a great way to demonstrate your expertise and value to a potential employer.

4. Be Known As A Resource

If you regularly answer questions on LinkedIn and provide links to great content on Facebook and Twitter, you are building your social capital.

5. Don’t Ask For A Job

Keep your name in front of people in a position to help your career. And instead of asking people outright for a job, make connections with the right people and let them see you are an intelligent, qualified candidate by updating your statuses several times a week, providing content to the groups you join, and tweeting about that interesting article you just read.

6. Search For Jobs

Websites Simply Hired, CareerBuilder, Monster and Indeed provide access to millions of job postings and are used by a proportionate number of job seekers. Improve the odds in your favor by looking for jobs on company Twitter feeds, on their Facebook pages, and in LinkedIn Groups.

7. Make A Plan

It’s also important to have a plan in mind when you set out to use these sites as part of a job search. Don’t try and do too many disparate tasks all day, every day. You’ll waste too much time and not do anything as well as you could have if you were more organized and disciplined. Work on your profile one day, join groups another, and follow companies a third.

Our Legal Bistro website is a great platform for lawyers’ career prospects. So, we hope the information above will be useful not only to our blog readers but also will help our lawyers become more attractive for their future clients.

The US Supreme Court is being asked to judge whether human genes can be patented

In a recent CNN article written by Bill Mears entitled: Justices at odds over patents for human genes, is reported that the US Supreme Court has heard on Monday arguments questioning whether the government should allow patents for human genes.

The lawsuit centers on whether companies and scientists could patent human DNA extracted from the body like a mechanical invention.

The case relates to nine patents on two human genes held by US biotech firm Myriad Genetics.

Myriad Genetics isolated two related types of biological material, BCRA-1 and BCRA-2, linked to increased hereditary risk for breast and ovarian cancer.

The company claims that the genes patented were “isolated” by them, making them products of human ingenuity and therefore patentable.

There are two completely different opinions to this so moot question. Scientists and companies argue patents stimulate medical innovation and investment that saves lives. But patient rights groups and civil libertarians accuse the patent holders are “holding hostage” the diagnostic care and access of information available to high-risk patients.

During the court hearing, people came together outside holding signs: “Your corporate greed is killing my friends”, “My genes are not property.”

According to Justice Stephen Breyer, the patent law is filled with uneasy compromises, because on the one hand, they do want people to invent, on the other hand, there is a worry about them tying up some kind of whatever it is, particularly a thing that itself could be used for further advance.

Justice Anthony Kennedy appreciated Myriad’s significant investment in time and money in its genetic studies and propounded that they might be given two-decade control over the genes for research, diagnostics, and treatment.

But a “chocolate chip” cookie analogy made by Justice Sonia Sotomayor demonstrated pretty clear that it is impossible to get a patent just isolating naturally derived products only for the particular process or use of the cookie. Indeed, it seems nonsense to apply for a patent for the basic items of salt, flour and eggs, simply because a new use or a new product from these ingredients has been created.

The patent system was designed long ago to encourage innovation, not to stifle scientific research and the free exchange of ideas and, what not less important is, not to discourage consumer accessibility to all new products.

All applications for getting a patent need a close examination based on applicable laws, in order to make right decision between abstract ideas and principles, and more tangible scientific discoveries and principles.

Medical science had traditionally avoided patents.

It is well-known that in 1952 Dr. Jonas Salk invented the polio oral vaccine. He announced his life-saving treatment, saying the people would “own” the vaccine, adding “Could you patent the sun?”

The sun does not come into question, but for the past 31 years, US authorities have been awarding patents on 20 percent of the human genes to universities and medical companies.

Nobody disputes the fact isolating the building blocks of life is not easy. Myriad has spent several years and hundreds of millions of dollars in its research.

Myriad Genetics is the only company that can perform tests for potential abnormalities of breast cancer genes. An initial test usually registers most problems, but the company also offers a second test, called BART, to detect the rest, a diagnostic that can cost several thousand dollars.

“Strong intellectual property and patent rights in the United States are critical to fulfilling our mission,” has said Richard Marsh, executive vice president and general counsel at Myriad.

Myriad points out the benefit for 1 million patients from its BRAC Analysis technology. 250 000 BRAC tests continue to be performed each year.

 Everybody agrees that BCRA testing has saved many lives, giving at-risk women the option of having their breasts removed as a preventive measure.

The average costs for the testing for patients is only about $100, as officials say. But there are others who disagree with these data.

Some patients have complained about too high prices for a second test, blaming the company for more interest in profits than patient care for those who cannot afford the second analysis. The company refuses in its turn to admit this as a truth.

Among those challenging the Myriad patents are sisters Eileen Kelly and Kathleen Maxian. Kelly was diagnosed with breast cancer at age 40.

Maxian made a BCRA test to be sure she was not at risk. Fortunately, it showed “negative”, but later the second BART testing proved positive, meaning the siblings carry the cancer-causing mutation all along.

Now the cancer is so advanced, that Maxian have only a 20-percent chance of being alive five years from now.

Money was not an issue for them, but Kelly and Maxian, along with a coalition of physician groups and genetic counselors say Myriad has not made the BART tests widely available for patients without a strong family history of these kinds of cancers.

ACLU‘s lawyer, Christopher Hansen, said: “Myriad did not invent the human genes at issue in this case, and they should not be allowed to patent them.”

But several justices raised concerns.

Justice Antonin Scalia asked: “Why would a company incur massive investment if it cannot patent an isolated gene?”

The Supreme Court rejected the appeal court’s conclusions, and is now reconsidering the case.

A ruling from the court is expected in June.

For more detailed disputes and other arguments, please read the entire CNN article.

Your Profile Image Can Get You More Clients

According to a recent Wall Street Journal article your profile picture is very important, especially if you are building your own business. And being strategic in the art of creating an image is a key component to success.

The New York City-based Ms. Williams spent some her time among three social-media sites — Twitter, Facebook and LinkedIn. Her research shows that a page with a profile picture is seven times as likely to be viewed as a page without one.

Even a small detail has a great role, for example, the way you are dressed. Imagine a client or an interviewing employee saying: “I don’t recognize you, you look different in reality.” In other words, the appearance should reflect the norms of your profession.

Another detail is to be caught in the moment so your energy in that moment is somehow captured. “If you’re sitting up straight, your shoulders are back, you’re smiling and you have open eyes, you’re non-verbally communicating that you’re confident, competent and have a curiosity about the world,” Ms. Williams says. She also suggests that it would be better if a friend takes a picture of you, because in a professional photograph you can sometimes feel uptight.

As concerns Facebook or other social-media websites the image on the main page has to be carefully selected and chosen. There shouldn’t also be too many photos of you uploaded as soon as you come back from a trip from Italy. Nobody is going to see them all, anyway.

No photos of you with food or drinks should be in your profile. “I don’t think anyone cares about what coffee I’m drinking in the morning, no matter how flavorful it is,” says Ms. Williams.

In addition, tagged photos can lead you to a problem, too. Everything can be ruined by a friend tagging you in a photo drinking wine on a Sunday afternoon. Here is what Ms. Williams says: “I have professional people on this network — I don’t want them seeing what I’m drinking on a Sunday night.” She was horrified when a relative tagged her in a picture showing her drinking wine at a family party.  She untagged herself.

More info. here: http://online.wsj.com/article/SB10001424052970203388804576613561719372694.html#articleTabs%3Darticle