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Thursday, March 28, 2013

Study Indicates I-80 Deer Fence Effective

Image of deer behind fence
Preliminary reports from a study indicate that the deer fence that was placed along a portion of Interstate 80 (I-80), between Lincoln and Omaha, Nebraska, have reduced the number of vehicle-deer crashes in that area. The Nebraska Department of Roads had the deer fence installed, along with improving wildlife underpassings, as the area on I-80 between the Mahoney State Park Interchange and Pflug Road had the highest number of deer-vehicle crashes in Nebraska.

Read the full post: Study Indicates I-80 Deer Fence Effective:


Lapin Law Offices represents clients in all types of motor vehicle accidents in Lincoln and throughout Nebraska. We always represent our injured clients with caring, passion and dedication. We offer a free consultation anytime (24/7) at 402-421-8033. You can also submit your case or question online: Contact Us.

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Wednesday, March 20, 2013

Do Not Yell "Bingo" Unless You Have It In Kentucky

An 18 year-old in Covington, Kentucky, falsely yelled “bingo” and was cited for second-degree disorderly conduct. On the ticket, the issuing officer wrote: "This caused the hall to quit operating since they thought someone had won. This delayed the game by several minutes and caused alarm to patrons.” The officer said he probably would not have issued the ticket but the yeller refused to say he was sorry. 

While the judge could have sentenced the young man up to 90 days in a jail and a $250 fine, he only ordered him not to say "bingo" for 6 months and stay out of trouble. In explaining this sentence, the Judge said, "He was remorseful in court. He was obviously a good kid who hadn't been in trouble before. With all the other things that happen in the court system and the families you’re dealing with, you've got to keep a sense of humor.”

Source: Bogus 'bingo' earns no jail time by Cindy Schroeder via


Lapin Law Offices represents injured, abused and disabled clients throughout Nebraska. You can contact us at 402-421-8033 or submit your case or question online: Contact Us. We offer a free initial consultation and do not collect a fee unless we get money for you.
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Thursday, March 14, 2013

New York Judge Permits Legal Service Via Facebook

By: Jeffrey Lapin

Serving Legal Documents Through Facebook
On March 7, 2013, United States District Court Judge Paul Engelmayer, of the Southern District of New York, ordered that the Federal Trade Commission (FTC) can serve legal documents upon five defendants residing in India by email and Facebook. Courts in England, Australia and New Zealand have already permitted service via Facebook. This decision is likely the first time a United States court has approved service by Facebook.


The Federal Rules of Civil Procedure ("FRCP") are rules created by the United States Supreme Court. Rule 1 states that they "govern the procedure" in almost all civil actions and proceedings. After a lawsuit is filed the plaintiff must serve the defendants with a copy of the Complaint (the lawsuit) and a summons, which is basically a notice that the defendant is being sued and in which court the lawsuit has been filed. FRCP Rule 4(f) governs service of summons on a person in a foreign country. This Rule states, in part:
SERVING AN INDIVIDUAL IN A FOREIGN COUNTRY. Unless federal law provides otherwise, an individual ... may be served at a place not within any judicial district of the United States:
(1) by any internationally agreed means of service that is reasonably calculated to give notice, such as those authorized by the Hague Convention on the Service Abroad of Judicial and Extrajudicial Documents; ...
(3) by other means not prohibited by international agreement, as the court orders.
Both the United States and India are signatories to the Hague Service Convention. Federal court decisions have stated that constitutional due process requires that any method of service be: reasonably calculated, under all circumstances, to apprise interested parties of the pendency of the action and afford them an opportunity to present their objections.


Without getting into the specifics and technical details of the case, Federal Trade Commission v. PCCare247 Inc., et. al., the issue that Judge Engelmayer had to decide was whether the FTC could serve 5 defendants, who were in India, by Facebook and email as efforts to serve them by other methods had failed. Judge Engelmayer noted that service by email had previously been determined to be a valid method to serve defendants and that the defendants were aware of the lawsuit. The FTC was not trying to serve Summons on these defendants but the Court used FDCP Rule 4(f) to determine whether the requested method of service would be permitted. Service by Facebook would work, as described by the Judge:
The FTC would send a Facebook message, which is not unlike an email, to the Facebook account of each individual defendant, attaching the relevant documents. Defendants would be able to view these messages when they next log on to their Facebook accounts (and, depending on their settings, might even receive email alerts upon receipt of such messages).
Judge Engelmayer noted that there could be constitutional due process issues with service by Facebook as "anyone can make a Facebook profile using real, fake, or incomplete information" but that the FTC had proven that the Facebook accounts the FTC wanted to send the documents to were actually operated by and likely to be received by the defendants. He opined:
The Court acknowledges that service by Facebook is a relatively novel concept, and that it is conceivable that defendants will not in fact receive notice by this means. But, as noted, the proposed service by Facebook is intended not as the sole method of service, but instead to backstop the service upon each defendant at his, or its, known email address. And history teaches that, as technology advances and modes of communication progress, courts must be open to considering requests to authorize service via technological means of then-recent vintage, rather than dismissing them out of hand as novel.
Ultimately, the Judge permitted the defendants to be served by Facebook and email. Read the Court’s Opinion and Order


The law always seems to trail technology. Social media has become a pervasive method of communication. It is good that courts are starting to catch-up and permit service by methods not even thought of when the original rules about service were adopted. The only concern, as noted by Judge Engelmayer, is the anonymity that social media permits. It is imperative that new methods of service, like via Facebook, ensure due process protections.


Administrative Office of the U.S. Courts on behalf of the Federal Judiciary: Federal Rules of Civil Procedure - Rules 1 and 4 (

Opinion and Order: Federal Trade Commission v. PCCare247 Inc., et. al. - Case No. 12 Civ. 7189 (PAE)



Lapin Law Offices represents injured, abused and disabled clients in Lincoln and throughout Nebraska. We pride ourselves in representing our clients with caring, passion and dedicated. We offer a free consultation anytime (24/7) at 402-421-8033 (Lincoln) or 888-525-8819 (Toll Free). You can also submit your case or question online (Contact Us).
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