Legal-Ease: Technology challenging limits of contract law

New technology is complicating and challenging our legal system, especially when it comes to contract law. 

Typically, people can be wronged in one of two different ways. First, a person may be harmed when that person’s rights are violated. Second, a person may be harmed when someone else violates a contract. Technology’s advances are designed to automate actions and decisions that were historically done manually by human beings. This can complicate contract law now that technology is taking the place of humans. 

Legal-Ease: Train noise and road blockage

The United States Constitution gives the federal government complete authority over interstate commerce, which includes railroads. So while residents and businesses may get frustrated by the noise and inconvenience that trains can sometimes bring, bringing their complaints to local governments won’t affect change. 

In northwest Ohio, state and local governments have no power to regulate railroads since our region has mostly interstate railroads. 

Legal-Ease: Pope Francis and elevator malfunctions

Ohio has several laws in place to ensure that elevators are safe and operable. The laws focus mainly on the construction, registration and inspection of elevators. 

Ohio elevator laws were last significantly updated in 2012. The Ohio Department of Commerce administers and enforces elevator laws. 

Legal-Ease: Can I legally play ‘Queen of Hearts’?

Ohio bars and restaurants frequently run “Queen of Hearts” games and people have the opportunity to win hundreds of thousands of dollars. Lottery games are allowed in Ohio because money is given to schools. Charities and religious organizations can raise money from games such as Bingo. Games of chance are typically not lawful unless there is skill associated with the game of chance. 

So, are Queen of Hearts games illegal? Ohio law allows for games of chance if the manager of the game makes no money in the game, among several other requirements. 

Legal-Ease: Is it worth fighting over?

Some disagreements stem from an action that causes someone to be physically or financially hurt. Other disagreements come from perceptions alone, often from poor communication or just simple misunderstandings.

Sometimes people want to use a lawsuit to exact revenge on principle. Principle can be a very expensive goal, though, when it comes to lawsuits. The cost of attorney fees and filing fees should be considered when deciding whether to involve a lawyer in a disagreement. 

Legal-Ease: Ohio bicycle laws

While many of Ohio’s laws concerning roadways apply to bicycles, there are some laws interpreted differently for bicycles and some laws that are specific to bicycles only. Bicycles aren’t allowed on all Ohio roadways, including freeways. Bicycles must be operated at safe speeds based on the context of the road and other traffic. There are several other laws that bicyclists should keep in mind while on Ohio’s roadways. 

Legal-Ease: What to do when the plan fails

Successful people both plan for success and for less-than-ideal circumstances. When a plan fails, it’s important to engage in three big steps. First, don’t just bury your head in the sand. Second, be proactive and gets plans in place early. Finally, be open-minded and be willing to accept help from others. 

Legal-Ease: Grass clippings on roadways

Property owners often blow their grass clippings on roadways, and a problem may arise if the grass clippings cause an accident. Some research suggests that grass clippings can be as slippery as grease is on roads, and clippings can be especially dangerous for motorcycles. Ohio does not have laws that explicitly prohibit property owners from blowing grass clippings onto roadways. An Ohio law makes it illegal to place injurious materials onto roads. But this law doesn’t cover glass clippings. 

Legal-Ease: Buying or selling over time

Businesses and individuals often want to buy or sell something over time. There are four items to consider when entering into a sale or purchase “over time.” First, if the sale includes a house or land with a house, it may be referred to as a “land contract,” which requires numerous legal requirements. Second, if the subject of the purchase is real estate that isn’t a house, the buyer and seller can agree to almost any terms they want. Third, if the subject of the purchase isn’t real estate, and it’s personal property, the buyer and seller can be flexible in terms as long as the personal property isn’t a retail item. Finally, every installment sale should be reviewed by the buyer and seller’s tax advisers. 

Legal-Ease: Walk this way

Ohio has several laws to govern pedestrian traffic, and many communities have their own additional laws and ordinances as well. Pedestrians must obey all pedestrian traffic-control signals. Sometimes people can become confused over how to handle pedestrians at intersections with stopped vehicular traffic.