Environmental / natural resources lawyers deal with the government's rules for the use of natural resources, such as air, land, and water. These attorneys also typically have experience working with the government agencies that regulate natural resources, such as the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency or a state Bureau of Land Management. If you are a business owner that may have caused pollution (for example, your underground oil tank leaked), or if you want to use a natural resource for your personal use (for example, water from a river to irrigate your property), an environmental lawyer or a natural resources lawyer can help you understand the complex laws in this area and how to avoid problems.
Employment attorneys focus on the many laws concerning the relationship between employers and employees. If you feel your employer has treated you wrongly as an employee, or if you're an employer who needs to terminate an unsatisfactory employee, you may benefit from the services of an employment attorney. Some professionals, such as teachers, policemen, and pilots, belong to labor unions, which have specific negotiation and labor law procedures that protect union members. A labor attorney will know which laws apply to your particular situation and how you can take advantage of the laws to protect your rights.
Family law includes laws of marriage, civil unions, same-sex relationships, domestic partnerships, divorce, separation, property settlements, alimony, spousal abuse, adoption, child abuse, child support, child custody and kidnapping. If you need help with a family-related legal issue, a family law attorney can advise in family disputes as well as represent you in lawsuits.
If you are involved in a domestic violence case, you may want to hire an experienced domestic violence (DV) lawyer. A DV attorney can help protect you if you or your family have been the victim of domestic violence. An attorney can file restraining orders and make changes to your child custody agreement in order to protect you and your family. Conversely, if you have been accused of physically or mentally threatening someone close to you (e.g., a family member, boyfriend, girlfriend, or partner), you should contact a lawyer with experience in domestic violence cases. DV lawyers can also defend you against false accusations of domestic violence, which might otherwise put you at a disadvantage in divorce or child custody negotiations.
A civil rights attorney helps protect the personal rights granted to you by the government. When someone violates those rights, a civil rights attorney can help you make them stop these violations, or repay you for any damage they have done to you. Your civil rights are spelled out in federal and state constitutions and in discrimination laws. In fact, civil rights attorneys are sometimes called discrimination attorneys because they frequently handle cases involving a person being treated differently based on gender, age, ethnicity, or sexual orientation.
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