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Maryland Legal Aid COVID Videos on YouTube

Maryland Legal Aid has added a number of videos in response to the effects of COVID on certain areas of law on YouTube. Right now you can find a video on the following topics:

More articles on COVID resources can be found on our Coronavirus/COVID19 Resources page.

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Life Planning & Power of Attorney

Information on power of attorney, health care power of attorney (health care directives) and standby guardianship for children (delegation of parental authority) can now be found here, all in one place, on the Maryland Judiciary’s website.

The page states:

This page provides some standard legal forms to help you prepare for death, incapacity, or unavailability. These documents are complicated and can have serious consequences. Consider consulting with a lawyer before you sign any paperwork.

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Maryland Law Help App

With the limited access to the courts now, and the law libraries and walk-in self- help centers housed there, it is the perfect time to download the new and improved Maryland Law Help App.

New features listed on the Maryland Law Help webpage include:

  • An improved user interface including more photos and contrasting colors to improve readability and ease-of-use.
  • New categories to aid in finding what you need quicker, including: Maryland Law, Legal Help, Find Your Court, Language Access, Accessibility, and Mediation.
  • Print or share PDF documents, including Tip Sheets and court forms, directly from your phone.
  • Find the nearest courthouses, law library, or self-help center on the new interactive maps.

This APP is your direct link to the Maryland People’s Law Library and the remote Maryland Courts Self-Help Center.

The app is available for iOS and Android.

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lawlibrary Maryland Law

Maryland Sentencing Guidelines Updated

The Maryland State Commission on Criminal Sentencing Policy‘s newest edition of its E-News, Guidelines E-News Vol. 15, No. 2, reports that there is a new Sentencing Guidelines Offense Table, Appendix A of the Maryland Sentencing Guidelines Manual. The changes are effective today, April 1, 2020. The E-News summarizes the changes:

(1) classification of a new offense passed during the 2019 Legislative Session;
(2) addition of CJIS codes for a number of offenses; and
(3) minor edits to the table.


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lawlibrary Maryland Law Self Represented

Maryland People’s Law Library COVID-19 Update

The Maryland People’s Law Library has added a link to a special page for a COVID-19 Update.

Resources there include:

And a link to find out accessibility of Maryland Court Law Libraries.

The Maryland People’s Law Library is always a great source for information on Maryland law written for the non-lawyer.

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lawlibrary Maryland Law

Maryland Coronavirus (COVID-19) Information for Business

The State of Maryland has created a page with information just for businesses. It provides links to Governor Hogan’s Executive orders, information on business relief measures, as well as interpretations of what is an essential business and contact information for questions.

Other topics on the page include:

  • Business Closures & Restrictions During COVID-19
  • Public Health Emergency Protection Act
  • Resources for Business
  • Financial Assistance & Taxes
  • Employer & Worker Assistance 
  • Licensing & Permitting
  • Educational Information
  • Enforcement

There is also link for subscribing for updates.

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lawlibrary Maryland Law

Maryland Legislative Session 2020 – SINE DIE?

The 2020 Session of the Maryland Legislature ended early on March 18 at 5 p.m. due to the Coronaviris/Covid19 pandemic and may reconvene in May. Still, the legislature passed more than 650 bills during the shortened session.

Visit the website of the Maryland General Assembly to see what passed and what did not. Some helpful links follow:

Bills enacted http://mgaleg.maryland.gov/mgawebsite/Legislation/Report?id=chapters

Bills passed by both chambers http://mgaleg.maryland.gov/mgawebsite/Legislation/Report?id=passedByBoth

Bills vetoed (includes veto overide information): http://mgaleg.maryland.gov/mgawebsite/Search/Publications?filter=veto

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lawlibrary Maryland Law

Worth a read: The Law of Impeachment – A digital exhibit from the Harris County Law Library

Wondering about the law of impeachment? Interested in the history and past impeachment proceedings? Or just want to be ready with the law for Thanksgiving table discussions?

The Harris County Law Library in Texas has put together a digital exhibit that includes a brief history, cites to the U.S. Constitution, and information on the most recent proceedings. It also includes discussion of Texas impeachment.

If interested in the Maryland law on impeachment see theMaryland Constitution Art. 2 § 7 Impeachment, Art. 3, § 26 Impeachment and Art. 4, § 4 Grounds and procedure for removal of judges.

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lawlibrary Maryland Law

New Maryland Laws Take Effect October 1, 2019

New laws take effect in Maryland today.

HB0240 (CH0028) makes it a crime to threaten certain hate crimes.

SB0236 (CH0750) changes the minimum sentence that would disqualify someone from jury duty.

HB1169 (CH0396)  increased the minimum age for purchasing tobacco products including vaping products from 18 to 21.

SB0449 (CH0755) allows for same day voter registration.

The law banning bump stocks takes effect today but SB0707 (CH0252) was actually passed during the 2018 session. The law prohibits a person “a person from transporting a certain rapid fire trigger activator into the State or manufacturing, possessing, selling, offering to sell, transferring, purchasing, or receiving a certain rapid fire trigger activator, subject to a certain exception; defining “rapid fire trigger activator” as any device, including a removable manual or power-driven activating device, constructed so that, when installed in or attached to a firearm the rate at which the trigger is activated increases or the rate of fire increases…”

This is just a small sampling of the new laws enacted by the 2019 Legislative Session. The Department of Legislative Services (DLS) of the General Assembly of Maryland provides a full listing. Was there a major issue from the 2019 session that was not covered in this series? The 90 Day Report – A Review of the 2019 Session, published by DLS, includes a hyperlinked list of Major Issues from 2019.

Can’t find what you’re looking for?  DLS publishes a Popular Terms List as a reference for current legislation that is often referred to by the public and media by certain popular terms.

Do you prefer paper sources?  The Law Library’s collection includes the the advance (paperback) Laws of Maryland, arranged in chapter number order with separate volumes for a Sponsor Index, the Final Status Report, and Committee Index. In addition, the Law Library’s Maryland collection includes print copies of the current Annotated Code of Maryland. The  2019 pocket parts should be coming soon.

Don’t forget – the Law Library is here if you have questions or would like additional information. Contact us!

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lawlibrary Maryland Law

New Edition of the Journalist’s Guide to Maryland’s Legal System

The third edition of the Journalist’s Guide to Maryland’s Legal System was released on Law Day, May 1, 2019. The theme for this year’s Law Day was “Free Speech, Free Press, Free Society.” From the judiciary’s press release:

“It is significant that we are releasing the Journalist’s Guide on Law Day,” said Maryland Court of Appeals Chief Judge Mary Ellen Barbera. “The Judiciary strives to improve public awareness and understanding of the Maryland judicial branch, the court system, and its role in resolving conflicts, providing justice, and upholding the rule of law. A free press is vitally important to inform the public about court proceedings and events. This guide gives journalists the tools they need to report about our legal system with the necessary accuracy and thoroughness to inform and educate the people we serve.”

Please read more of the press release here.

This is a great resource not just for journalists but for anyone who wants to learn more about our legal system.

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