Many Seattle homeowners are unaware that their property may have restrictive covenants (dictating what types of people can own the property) attached to it that are based on outdated, unenforceable and racist policies from the past. But beginning January 1st of 2019, homeowners can ask the King County Recorder’s Office to modify any of their deeds that contain such language. Read the Seattle Times article HERE.
The Federal Trade Commission’s online resource, IdentityTheft.gov, can help you recover from identity theft. The site uses a three-step process to gather information about your situation, create a recovery plan for immediate action and follow-up steps and, if you choose to create a personal account, to help you track the steps you’ve taken and update your recovery plan as you proceed. It provides sample letters and checklists. It also includes custom checklists for specific types of accounts that are often the target of identify thieves and special forms for situations like tax, medical and child identity theft. The recommended routine is to follow the site’s interview process to produce a custom recovery plan but you can also jump directly to a complete list of all recovery steps contained within the site. It includes numerous independent links related to identity theft and identity protection, including links to information about the warning signs of identify theft, what your rights are in an identity theft situation and how to contact credit bureaus.
Thanks to LeighAnne Thompson, Reference Librarian at Seattle University School of Law, our site now has copies of the following legal research guides, presented as infographics created with Piktochart.
Many people are visual learners so using the infographics format leverages this fact and can help people better understand information, even complex information like legal research processes. Please let us know if you find these helpful by contacting us here.
The King County Law Library’s 2017 Annual Report is here. Highlights include discussions of our expanded Subscriber Program services, a new lunch-time CLE series and the remodel of our web site.
The Washington State office of the ACLU has posted helpful “Can I Vote?” flowcharts to help people with criminal convictions figure out if they are eligible to vote. The flowcharts are written in seven languages–English, Chinese, Korean, Oromo, Spanish, Somali and Vietnamese. A person convicted as an adult of a felony in Washington State loses their right to vote and is also ineligible if they are serving a sentence for any felony conviction from another State or federal court. The right to vote is automatically restored once the person is no longer under the supervision of the Washington State Department of Corrections. Read the English language version of the “Can I Vote?” flowchart here.
This past session, the Washington State Legislature passed SHB 2822, Chapter 176 of the Laws of 2018, to address growing problems with people misrepresenting ordinary animals as service animals. In addition to changing the definition of “service animal”, the new law also creates a civil penalty for misrepresentation of a service animal of up to $500. WashingtonLawHelp has published a guide related to this new law here.
K & L Gates has founded a pro bono project to help victims of “revenge porn” or nonconsensual pornography defend their “cyber” civil rights. Assistance is available to victims both within the United States and abroad. To contact the Cyber Civil Rights Project and K & L Gates, use this link. For more information about cyber civil rights, see the Cyber Civil Rights Initiative’s web site.
The disconnect between the perceived value of public libraries–particularly in the eyes of influencial policy-makers–and the vital role they play in supporting the social infrastructure of a civil society is real. And it’s something that anyone concerned about equity, open access, and diversity should be prepared to confront. So says sociologist Eric Klinenberg, in his recent New York Times opinion article, To Restore Civil Society, Start With the Library.
For more information about the recanted Forbes article about the value of public libraries, see this QZ article.
King County Bar Association’s Volunteer Legal Services program has launched a new service for low-income people trying to vacate criminal conviction records. The ultimate goal is to reduce the barriers to employment and housing created by convictions. To be eligible to participate, you must be low-income and your most recent conviction must have been from a court within King County. Download this flyer for more information.