New Laws in Maryland Today

October 1 is the normal day for new Maryland laws to take effect. These are the laws passed by the Maryland General Assembly during the last legislative session.

And a slew of interesting laws do take effect today. Here is a rundown. Future blog posts will expound on some of more interesting of these laws. As always, the devil is in the details!

  • Easier Divorce Laws – this is by the far the one which will have most impact on the practice of law. You no longer need the one year separation to get a divorce in Maryland IF you have no minor children in common and you resolve your divorce with a separation agreement. We will have a longer post on the details of this law Monday. 
  • Shielding Your Criminal Record – You will now be allowed to keep private certain non violent misdemeanors. This law is designed to help people with minor criminal records get jobs. We will have a longer post on the details of this law coming soon. 
  • Higher Speed Limits? – The State Highway Administration is empowered to raise the speed limit to 70 mph in certain locations. The first is I-68 in Western Maryland. They will study if other areas are safe for this increase. Don’t hold your breath living in Southern Maryland for a speed increase any time soon. We don’t have any roads that qualify.
  • Leave Your Car Unattended & Running – You can leave your car running and unattended if you have a remote ignition and the car is locked on private property. This is for all of you who like to pre-warm your car in the winter months.
  • Stronger DUI penalties – If you are drunk and involved in a deadly crash, you will have your license suspended automatically for 6 months instead of the old rule of 45 days. 
  • Prevent Heroin Overdose Deaths – Maryland made it easier to get Naxolone, which reverses the effects of a heroin overdose. 
  • Other laws – Laws on sexual harrassment are now extended to interns, anyone applying for a corrections officer job must now pass a polygraph, the police are going to issue alerts for hit and run drivers, and social services can more easily put a kid in foster care if their family is neglecting them or failing to shield them from abuse.
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Andrews, Bongar, Gormley & Clagett is one of the oldest and largest law firms in Southern Maryland. We have been serving clients here for over 50 years. We have more attorneys and a larger staff than most other local law firms, so we can handle a wider variety of legal matters. Each attorney concentrates his or her practice in a few key areas, so you can be assured of the expertise you need.

 

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