Friday, August 28, 2015

Consequences Of Having An Order Of Protection Entered Against You

When you think of criminal defense, what comes to mind?

From reckless driving to manslaughter and everything in between, criminal defense at the Lake of the Ozarks comes in a variety of different forms. Today, the team at O'Donnell Law Center is here to take a look at some of the different factors involved in abuse or assault cases. Specifically, we want to look at orders of protection and the impacts they can have on those they are entered against.


What Is An Order Of Protection?

To put it simply, an order of protection, also called a restraining order, is a court order that is entered by a judge against a person accused of such things as abuse, assault, the threat of abuse or assault, or stalking, and are intended to provide a layer of protection between the alleged victim and the person accused of the threatening or dangerous behavior. While these orders do not necessarily prevent the undesired behavior, they do give law enforcement the ability to arrest you based upon a violation of the order.

What Happens If An Order Of Protection Is Entered Against You?

Having an order of protection entered against you has several legal consequences. For example, individuals who have had an order entered against them...
  • May not be able to possess firearms.
  • May not be eligible for a conceal and carry permit.
  • Could be punished by jail time or hefty fines for violating the order.
  • May be required to attend counseling or other corrective programs.
  • Could be forced to stay away from their home.
  • Could be forced to stay away from their children.
The consequences you face when a protective order is entered against you can be severe.

Contact An Experienced Criminal Defense Attorney

Obviously, having an order of protection entered against you can have several undesirable effects. Fortunately, you do not have to face these challenges by yourself! While a petition for an order of protection is a civil matter, a violation of an order of protection can result in criminal charges.  Our experienced criminal defense attorney at the Lake of the Ozarks has the knowledge and skill you need to successfully navigate these legal challenges. If you have questions about defending yourself from having an order of protection entered against you or from criminal charges in Camden County, MO, contact our attorney to schedule a consultation today.

Call the most trusted law firm at the Lake of the Ozarks to get started today.
We Carry Your Burden ~ You Carry On With Life.

Disclaimer: No attorney-client relationship is created by the publication of this blog.


Phone: (573) 552-0317

O'Donnell Law Center, LLC
1026 Palisades Blvd. Suite 3
Osage Beach, MO  65065
(Located on the McDonald's Side of the Building)

Thursday, August 20, 2015

What NOT To Do When Getting A Divorce

Even for the most mature, emotionally grounded individuals, divorce can be incredibly challenging and stressful. Even when both parties agree that divorce is the best option for everyone involved, emotions tend to run high and it can be hard to stay level-headed. Your Lake of the Ozarks divorce attorney can help you navigate your divorce in such a way that is as stress free and rational as possible. If you are getting a divorce at the Lake of the Ozarks, what you don't do can be just as important as what you do do. Here are a few reminders on what NOT to do, courtesy of the team at O'Donnell Law Center.


Don't Forget To Update Your Will
If you and your spouse had established a will while you were married, it is crucial that you update this document after the divorce is finalized. Chances are you will no longer want your now-ex-spouse to be your healthcare power of attorney, for example, and your assets may have changed during the divorce proceedings. You will want to update your estate planning documents to reflect your current position and desires as soon as you can.

Don't Assume That Things Have To Be Challenging
Just because divorce is notorious for being incredibly difficult does not mean yours has to be. Divorce proceedings do not have to get ugly right out of the box. The most successful divorces typically occur when both parties are able to compromise a bit.  When compromise is possible, the chances of coming to an agreeable solution are much higher.

Don't Ask Your Lawyer To Be Your Therapist
Your lawyer is there to help you with the legal aspects of your divorce. Getting proper emotional support during this transitional time is very important, but your attorney is not situated to provide that emotional support. Your attorney has not been trained to help people cope with the emotional aspects of divorce, but he/she may be able to recommend a good therapist for you to see.

Don't Forget To Take A Long, Hard Look At Your Finances
Divorce requires you to make a major financial transition. Throughout the duration of your marriage, you and your spouse probably divided the costs of your mortgage, taxes, loans, and general costs of living and used your joint incomes (if both of you worked) to cover these expenses. After your divorce, you will not have your spouse to help you cover these debts or expenses. Early on in the divorce process is the time to take a critical look at all of your current (and future) expenses.  This information is important to have when considering how to divide up the marital assets.

Don't Withhold Information From Your Attorney
Withholding information from your attorney, specially embarrassing information, may be tempting, but it can create serious problems during a divorce. In order for your attorney to set you up for success, he/she needs to know everything about the situation, especially if custody is at issue.  This information includes such things as how you spend your money, whether you use illegal drugs, and whether or not there have been infidelity issues within the marriage. Your best bet is to get everything out on the table with your attorney early, so that he or she can discuss with you the best strategy going forward.

Contact A Lake Of The Ozarks Divorce Attorney To Get Started
If you are preparing to get a divorce and are in need of qualified legal representation, contact the experienced divorce attorney at O'Donnell Law Center. Our team would be honored to assist you through this transitional time.

Call the most trusted law firm at the Lake of the Ozarks to get started today.
We Carry Your Burden ~ You Carry On With Life.

Disclaimer: No attorney-client relationship is created by the publication of this blog.


Phone: (573) 552-0317

O'Donnell Law Center, LLC
1026 Palisades Blvd. Suite 3
Osage Beach, MO  65065
(Located on the McDonald's Side of the Building)

Friday, August 14, 2015

3 Example Defenses You Can Use In A Criminal Court Case

Under our American legal system, individuals who have been charged with a crime are innocent until proven guilty. If you are facing a criminal charge at the Lake of the Ozarks, you have many rights that go along with that presumption of innocence. Depending on the severity of your criminal charge, being found guilty can have serious consequences that forever change your life as you know it, including:
  • Hefty fines and county jail time
  • Life in prison and even death
  • A criminal record that will stay with you for the rest of your life
With such dire consequences at stake, it is critically important that you consult with an experienced criminal defense attorney in central Missouri as soon as you are charged with a crime, and even before being charged if you are the target of a criminal investigation.


There are several different categories of defenses to consider if you find yourself charged with a criminal offense. Your criminal defense attorney will be able to work with you to help determine which defense will be best for your specific case, but here is a quick look at some of them:

1. Alibi

If you didn't commit the crime and were not even at the scene of the alleged crime,  then the alibi defense should be considered. This is where you produce evidence that you were in a different place at the time the crime was committed, or you have a witness that can testify that you you were somewhere else at the time that the crime was committed and you could not be the person who committed the crime. Your Lake of the Ozarks criminal defense attorney may be able to help you determine if you have the evidence necessary to assert an alibi defense.

2. Mental Disease or Defect

Also known as the insanity defense, this defense acknowledges that you "did the act" but are not legally guilty of the crime due to a mental disease or defect that was so severe you were incapable of knowing and appreciating the nature, quality, or wrongfulness of your conduct. This is a very difficult defense and you will be required to prove your mental disease or defect through psychological evaluations, expert testimony, and witnesses who provide evidence on your behalf. If this defense is successful, you may still be required to spend a substantial amount of time confined, but in a mental institution rather than the department of corrections. Your criminal defense attorney will be able to help you determine if the not guilty by reason of mental disease or defect defense will be right for you and your case.

3. Self Defense

Intentionally injuring another person or taking another's life are typically illegal acts in this country, but our Missouri law of self defense allows for exceptions to that rule under very specific and limited circumstances. The law of self defense in Missouri is built upon a belief that we should be allowed to use varying degrees of physical force upon another person (subject to several exceptions and caveats that are too numerous to detail here) when necessary to defend ourselves or others. If you have been charged with a crime of violence, seek advice from your criminal defense lawyer in Camden County, MO to help you determine if you may be able claim self-defense.

Contact A Criminal Defense Attorney To Get Started

These are brief overviews of three of the many different types of defenses that may be asserted as defenses under certain circumstances.  If you have been charged with a crime or are the target of a criminal investigation and you do not have an attorney, you should talk to a criminal defense attorney who can assess your unique situation and help you determine which defense will best meet your specific situation. At O'Donnell Law Center, we have an experienced criminal defense team that you can speak with about assessing your case.

Call the most trusted law firm at the Lake of the Ozarks to get started today.
We Carry Your Burden ~ You Carry On With Life.

Disclaimer: No attorney-client relationship is created by the publication of this blog.


Phone: (573) 552-0317

O'Donnell Law Center, LLC
1026 Palisades Blvd. Suite 3
Osage Beach, MO  65065
(Located on the McDonald's Side of the Building)

Thursday, August 6, 2015

Getting To Know Andrea Harris

We're a tightly knit team at O'Donnell Law Center; we rely heavily on each of our valued team members in order to successfully provide high-quality legal representation to each of of our clients. Over the past several weeks, we have had the pleasure of introducing you to several of our team members: attorney Deirdre O'Donnell, paralegal Randy Huff, and legal assistant Aprill Stonebarger. This week, we'd like to finish off this introductory blog series by introducing you to the other key person on our team: Ms. Andrea Harris.

Getting To Know Andrea Harris

Andrea was born and raised in St. Louis County. She graduated from high school in 1982 and went on to earn an associate's degree from St. Louis Community College. She lives with her beloved husband, Justus, and their son, Magnus.


Andrea started out working with animals. She volunteered at a veterinary clinic, and worked with birds of prey and other wildlife in a domestic capacity. For twelve years, she worked as a keeper at the St. Louis Zoo where she worked mainly with hoof stock and birds. 

Andrea became a stay-at-home mom after her son was born. She jokes that being a stay-at-home parent was the same as her zookeeper job - feeding, protecting, and enriching - but that now she got to limit herself to just one particular species! As Magnus grew, she got more involved with the community by volunteering at his school and hosting "book swaps" so that children who were unable to afford books could still get the educational materials they needed.

A little over a year ago, Andrea re-entered the workforce as a substitute teacher. She loved working with the children and has many fond memories from her stint at the school - such as the time the 1st-graders worked their math problems while singing along to the soundtrack from "Frozen."  She now works from her home in the St. Louis area as a "virtual" legal assistant for O'Donnell Law Center, and when you call our office, she is likely to be the first member of our team you have contact with.

Andrea's son is now in the 7th grade and she home-schools him. She has many exciting projects lined up to help guide her son's education, including building a robot with his grandfather.

Andrea and her husband love to travel, but their many pets make it difficult to get away. Among many things, Andrea spends some of her time tending to their flock of chickens - which sometimes includes sparring with their rooster, "Captain Kirk."

Through her work as a zookeeper, parent, teacher, and pet-owner, Andrea has gained important insight into the value of teamwork, cooperation, and trust. She is very happy to be a member of the team at our Lake of the Ozarks law firm and enjoys putting those lessons of teamwork and cooperation to good use every single day. We are lucky to have such a caring, reliable, and well-rounded person on our team!

Contact O'Donnell Law Center For All Your Legal Needs!

No matter what legal challenge you may be facing, we hope you'll consider contacting our local law firm. We have experience handling cases in criminal defense, family law, property law, business law, personal injury, debt collections defense, and many other legal disciplines. We look forward to working with you!

Call the most trusted law firm at the Lake of the Ozarks to get started today.
We Carry Your Burden ~ You Carry On With Life.

Disclaimer: No attorney-client relationship is created by the publication of this blog.


Phone: (573) 552-0317

O'Donnell Law Center, LLC
1026 Palisades Blvd. Suite 3
Osage Beach, MO  65065
(Located on the McDonald's Side of the Building)