Self Defense in Pennsylvania

Self Defense in Pennsylvania

Self Defense in Pennsylvania The Pennsylvania Supreme Court has recently affirmed the case of Commonwealth v. Torres through Commonwealth v. Lineman, holding that the government must prove beyond a reasonable doubt that defendant did not act in self-defense, when there is evidence of self defense raised by the Defendant. This is a major decision, as […]

Pa. Super. Ct. Rules Time of Blood Draw is Testimonial Evidence

Time of Blood Draw, Second Offenses

Pa. Super. Ct. Rules Time of Blood Draw is Testimonial Evidence. The Pennsylvania Superior Court has decided the case of Commonwealth v. Hajdarevic, 2020 Pa. Super. 175. In this case, the Court held that the time a defendant’s blood is drawn is testimonial evidence for purposes of the Sixth Amendment Confrontation Clause. In other words, […]

Hearsay at Preliminary Hearing

Hearsay at Preliminary Hearing, Bail Motion

Using hearsay at a preliminary hearing is subject to limitations.  The Pennsylvania Supreme Court has decided the case of Commonwealth v. McClelland, holding that hearsay alone is insufficient to establish a prima facie case at a preliminary hearing.  This is a landmark decision since the Pennsylvania Superior Court recently held in Commonwealth v Ricker, that […]

Emergency Housing Protection Act

Emergency Housing Protection Act

PHILADELPHIA EMERGENCY HOUSING PROTECTION ACT  The Philadelphia City Counsel has passed the Emergency Housing Protection Act (“EHPA”).  The city law imposes strict compliance requirements on landlords to evict tenants following the COVID-19 pandemic.  The EHPA has already been challenged by the Homeowners Association of Philadelphia (HAPCO) as unconstitutional in federal court. The EHPA was passed […]

Pennsylvania Search and Seizure Law

Search and Seizure Law

PENNSYLVANIA SEARCH AND SEIZURE LAW Police must have a legal basis to intrude on the rights of a private citizen under search and seizure law.  The Pennsylvania Superior Court has decided the case of Commonwealth v. Arrington, holding that a traffic stop late at night in a high crime-area without more is not reasonable suspicion […]

Jury Selection

Jury Selection

SHOULD I WAIVE THE JURY TRIAL? Jury selection is an important element of a criminal trial.  The Pennsylvania Superior Court has decided the case of Commonwealth v. Rosenthal, No. 1401 WDA 2018, holding that general racial animus or stereotyping is insufficient to overturn a jury verdict.  For a jury verdict to be overturned due to […]

Early Lease Termination

Lease Termination, Breaking a Lease

In Philadelphia, many tenants inquire about early lease termination.  Tenants have rights.  The rights are codified in the Philadelphia Property Maintenance Code.  Tenants also have rights under the Emergency Housing Protection Act.  Finally, Tenants have rights under Pennsylvania case law. Early Termination Protections The law guarantees tenants a covenant of quiet enjoyment and implied warranty […]

Violation of Probation Lawyer

Violation of Probation Lawyer, Ejectment Lawyer

VOP REQUIRES NEW CRIME A violation of probation lawyer may assist in obtaining the release of a defendant arrested while on probation.  The Pennsylvania Superior Court has decided the case of Commonwealth v. Giliam, No. 3882 EDA 2016.  In this case the Superior Court held that to violate probation a defendant must either; 1.) violate […]

Philadelphia Tenants Rights

Philadelphia Tenants Rights, Airbnb Rental

Philadelphia Tenants Rights have expanded under recent legislation.  On October 26, 2011 Philadelphia City Council passed § 9-804 of the Philadelphia Code.  The ordinance expands tenants rights.  Under the law tenants have rights in Philadelphia Landlord/Tenant Court to contest evictions.  It is important that landlords and tenants are aware of tenant rights as they are […]

Notice to Vacate

Notice to Vacate

LEGAL REQUIREMENTS OF A NOTICE TO VACATE In Pennsylvania a landlord must terminate a lease by providing the defendant a notice to vacate.  The notice must be delivered to the tenant.  The notice must state whether the tenant is being terminated for; 1.) breach of the lease; 2.) nonpayment of rent; or 3.) termination of […]