Monday, April 18, 2011
Legal Beagles -- Do you know the laws regarding your work in the home
1) Do you know what housing codes, zoning codes, home owner's covenants, animal codes, liabilities regarding animals or property or home business, etc. apply in your area?
2) If you want to operate a business from your home, do you know if you need licenses? Home business insurance? If you hire someone to help you, do you know what tax responsibilities you might have? Some home business have very few, if any, legal requirements. Others may call for more legal documentation.
3) If you allow someone who is not in your immediate family to stay in your home for an extended time, do you have a written agreement of what is expected from each party? Having one can save a lot of headaches for both you and the person who is staying in your home.
4) Do you know how long to paperwork related to personal and business taxes?
5) Do you understand any leases you have signed? Mortgages? Even if it's after the fact, go back and educate yourself.
6) Do you keep up with contracts for improvements to your home or household services? Warranties?
7) If you trade via E-Bay or Craig's list, have you checked any legal matters related to your transactions? Do you keep written records of the transactions you have made, even if it is an informal letter of agreement between two parties?
8) Are your sidewalks, steps, and porches up to code? Safe?
9) If you have a pool, is it surrounded by a fence and safety gate?
10) Do you keep up with current recommendations for Internet safety and privacy?
11) If you are a homeowner, do you know your rights as a homeowner? If you are a renter, do you know your rights as a renter? If you are a landlord, do you know your rights as a landlord?
12) Do you know legal restrictions in your state or area regarding how young a babysitter may be?
13) Do you know how to remove your name from unsolicited market lists, calling lists, etc.
14) Are you aware of your rights regarding loud noises from the street that enter your home?
15) Are you aware of your rights regarding radio, T.V., cable T.V., phone services, Internet service, etc.?
16) Do you know your rights regarding freedom to worship?
17) When was the last time you read the Constitution of the U.S.? Do you understand the hearts of the founding fathers with regard to the laws they enacted? Do you understand the original intents behind the amendments?
18) Do you understand laws that affect home schooling, public schools, private schools, etc?
19) Are you prepared to be a juror should you be called?
20) Do you know your legal rights regarding intruders, trespassers, and people who create nuisances?
21) Do you know your legal responsibilities if you suspect that a child is being abused? Do you know the requirements of any organization that you are involved in regarding this issue?
22) Do you know what your rights and responsibilities as a voter are?
We don't have to go to law school to live happy and healthy family lives. However, it's good to have some knowledge of any legal aspects that could affect your family. This will keep you from inadvertently breaking the law and incurring penalties. It will also help you maintain your rights to privacy and security in your home.
A study of the city, state and federal laws with regard to homes, neighborhoods, and farms in your area makes a good home school course. It's a good way to introduce your children to the practical aspects of the law.
Understanding a little law history can help us also interpret our country's constitution in a right way. This, too, makes a good subject for home school.
Happy Home Keeping!