Can the Government Literally Seize the Shirt off Your Back?

I'm a long-time critic of state and federal forfeiture laws. Civil forfeiture laws, supposedly derived from an obscure passage in the Bible, permit police to seize your property without ever charging you with a crime, much less convicting you of one.

Read More Can the Government Literally Seize the Shirt off Your Back?

Identity Theft Scam Targets Foreign Investors in US Securities

A new scam targets non-resident investors in U.S. accounts. It is an e-mail message, purportedly from the IRS, that threatens to impose a 30% withholding tax on all income from the account if the recipient fails to disclose a great deal of confidential information via a fake IRS reporting form.

Read More Identity Theft Scam Targets Foreign Investors in US Securities

U.K. Uses Anti-Terror Laws to Deal with Financial Crisis

The word “terrorism” is a politically charged term, to put it mildly. Declaring a “War on Terrorism” means, of course, deciding who is a “terrorist.” And, according to the British government, the latest terrorist in its sights is Iceland.

Read More U.K. Uses Anti-Terror Laws to Deal with Financial Crisis

Negotiate, Don’t Litigate

I’ve been involved in lawsuits (fortunately, not for more than a decade), and believe me, they’re no fun. To begin with, lawsuits are terrifically expensive.

Read More Negotiate, Don’t Litigate

Your Cell Phone is a Sitting Duck for Data Theft

If you’re like me, you carry your cell phone everywhere. And, you may not give much thought to the information on it: phone numbers you’ve saved, photographs you’ve taken, records of calls made and received, along with text messages.

Read More Your Cell Phone is a Sitting Duck for Data Theft

Attack of the $54 Million Pants

If you don’t recognize Roy L. Pearson’s name, you should. He’s the latest poster boy for frivolous lawsuits, and for good reason. And now, he’s back in court.

Read More Attack of the $54 Million Pants

We Know Where You Are, Where You’ve Been, and Where You’re Going

First, it was radar guns. Next came red light cameras, which took a photo both of your face and your license plate numbers. And now, surveillance vendors are promoting an American “homeland security” system that would track you, wherever you drive.

Read More We Know Where You Are, Where You’ve Been, and Where You’re Going

Offshore Trusts Instead of Pre-Nups?

Speaking from personal experience, the legal action that is the most expensive, the most emotionally difficult, and the most invasive of privacy, is a divorce.

Read More Offshore Trusts Instead of Pre-Nups?

Google Censors “Drunken Emails”

We’ve all done it…sending out an e-mail message in the heat of the moment, without thinking clearly. Or,,after drinking "a few too many. "

Read More Google Censors “Drunken Emails”

How to Survive the Coming Economic Emergency [Part II]

In my last post, I described the awesome power of the U.S. President to under an “economic emergency.”  That authority includes, among other measures, the power to restrict or even prohibit the transfer of dollars outside the United States.

Read More How to Survive the Coming Economic Emergency [Part II]

Living Under a State of Financial Emergency [Part I]

As the global economy implodes, governments throughout the world have responded.  So far, that response hasn’t impressed global investors.  Stock markets are in free-fall, major banks collapse daily, and even creditworthy consumers and companies find it difficult to borrow money.

Read More Living Under a State of Financial Emergency [Part I]

EU Tells Savers to Invest Outside Europe

With an average tax burden consuming more than 40% of GDP, the 27-member European Union already has some of the world’s highest taxes. At the same time, the EU faces a fiscal crisis.

Read More EU Tells Savers to Invest Outside Europe

It’s Not Just Sarah Palin’s E-Mails at Risk—Yours are Too!

Last week, the media reported that hackers had obtained unauthorized access to vice-Presidential candidate Sarah Palin’s Yahoo! personal e-mail account. Within hours, photos of her family and screenshots of her messages were posted on various Web sites.

Read More It’s Not Just Sarah Palin’s E-Mails at Risk—Yours are Too!

IRS Cracks Down on Offshore Reporting

If you’re a U.S. citizen or permanent resident, Uncle Sam wants to know if you’re investing or doing business offshore.  And if you don’t “tell all” to the IRS, you could face some very nasty penalties.

Read More IRS Cracks Down on Offshore Reporting

The Terrorist Excuse for Global Financial Surveillance

Quietly and with little fanfare, governments throughout the world have constructed a pervasive network of technology and law to eliminate financial privacy worldwide.

Read More The Terrorist Excuse for Global Financial Surveillance

RFID Tags Enable 24/7 Surveillance

Are you ready to begin living a tagged life?  If you are, the future is here, courtesy of radio-frequency identification (RFID) tags.

Read More RFID Tags Enable 24/7 Surveillance

Attorney-Client Privilege: Use It, Don’t Lose It

When you retain a licensed attorney, you generally have the right to refuse to disclose all "confidential communications" between you and your attorney.  You also have the right to prevent others from disclosing confidential communications.  In U.S. law, this is known as the attorney-client privilege.

Read More Attorney-Client Privilege: Use It, Don’t Lose It

U.S. Tracks All Border Crossings for 15 Years

One long-term goal of the War on (Some) Terrorists is to create a "lifetime personal travel history" of all U.S. citizens and visitors to the United States.

Read More U.S. Tracks All Border Crossings for 15 Years

Click Here to Sue!

Looking for a quick buck?  Starting next month, you could do worse then surfing to WhoCanISue. You too can get rich playing the "lawsuit lottery,"

Read More Click Here to Sue!

Asset Protection by Stealth: Why—and How

Lots of people contact me because they're interested in protecting their assets.  Yet, in setting up an "asset protection plans" for clients, I always caution them never to refer to their plan as, well, an "asset protection."

Read More Asset Protection by Stealth: Why—and How

When It Comes to Sperm Donors, Nice Guys Finish Last

In the nearly 25 years that I've been writing about America's lawsuit crisis, I thought I had seen everything.  But a growing trend of holding sperm donors accountable for child support payments has to take the cake.

Read More When It Comes to Sperm Donors, Nice Guys Finish Last

Are You Ready for the e-PATRIOT Act?

If you've ever wondered how Congress could possible enact legislation as complex as the USA PATRIOT Act less than 30 days after the events of Sept. 11, 2001, you're not alone.

Read More Are You Ready for the e-PATRIOT Act?

America’s “Long Arm” is Very Long Indeed

Have you committed a "tax crime"—or any other crime—that could be prosecuted in the United States? If you have, you should know that there are few if any practical limits to U.S. jurisdiction if Uncle Sam wants to bring you before its courts.

Read More America’s “Long Arm” is Very Long Indeed

Welcome to the Olympics…and Big Brother

You've realized a lifelong dream…and arrived in Beijing just in time for the opening ceremonies on Saturday, August 8.

Read More Welcome to the Olympics…and Big Brother