Important Issues For Green Card Holders to Remember and Consider When Traveling

Clients who are Green Card holders (i.e. permanent residents) frequently ask me about issues they need to be aware of when traveling internationally, outside of the United States.

Here are some things to consider to minimize the potential for problems at the border. After a long intercontinental flight, nobody wants to find themselves in a position of being subjected to lengthy questioning by CBP officers at the airport. Particularly in situations where the Green Card holder has spent significant time (more than 6 months, typically) outside the U.S., there are potential pitfalls one needs to be aware of – or risk losing the highly-prized Green Card. CBP, interestingly enough, in its operations manual, has some good guidance on what immigration inspectors are to consider when inspecting Green Card residents seeking re-admission into the U.S.

Admission, generally The CBP officer shall admit a resident alien returning to an unrelinquished domicile, if not otherwise inadmissible, upon presentation of an unexpired Green Card (I-551), a reentry permit, refugee travel document (indicating lawful permanent residence), or temporary evidence of LPR status such as an Travel Statmp (or ADIT stamp).

A returning resident alien is not required to present a valid passport for reentry into the U.S., although most will have one, since a passport is often required for entry into a foreign country. When presented, the passport is normally annotated with “ARC”, and the alien’s “A” number should be written on the page with the admission stamp.

Admission after prolonged absences A Green Card holder, who has been outside the United States for more than one year (two, if presenting a reentry permit), may be seen by CBP to possibly have abandoned residence. Other indicators of possible abandonment of residence are:

(1) employment abroad,

(2) having immediate family members who are not permanent residents,

(3) arrival on a charter flight where most passengers are non-residents with return passage,

(4) lack of a fixed address in the U.S., or

(5) frequent prolonged absences from the United States.

In questionable cases, it is appropriate for CBP to ask for other documentation to substantiate residence, such as driver’s licenses and employer identification cards.

Green Card holder without Green Card? Lawful permanent residents (LPR) lacking evidence of alien registration because it has been left at home or in a safety deposit box, may obtain from CBP a visa waiver, with fee, or defer the inspection to another CBP office local to the Resident’s home in the U.S.

If the LPR claims the card has been lost or stolen, the POE may accept a Form I-90, Application to Replace Permanent Resident Card, with fee. These actions may be considered once the identity of the LPR has been confirmed, preferably by checking against the data contained in the CBP computer systems.

A LPR requesting a visa waiver must complete a Form I-193, Application for Waiver of Visa or Passport, if otherwise admissible. The applicant requesting the waiver is to review the information recorded on the printed form for accuracy and sign where indicated. If the waiver is approved, the LPR is to be given a copy of the Form I-193 and be admitted as a returning resident. If a waiver is denied, the applicant may be placed in removal proceedings before an immigration judge.

CBP officers can also use something called “deferred inspection”. This is usually limited to a Green Card or Visa holder who:

o will be able to produce the requisite document within a few days; or,

o claims to have lost or had the Form I-551 stolen, is unable to pay the Form I-90 fee at the time of initial inspection and has not been previously deferred for presentation of the Form I-551 document.

The LPR will be required to file a Form I-90 with U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) within the next 30 days.

Conditional Residents A conditional resident is generally admissible to the U.S. if applying before the second anniversary of admission for conditional residence. The conditional resident may also be admissible if he or she has a boarding letter (or “transport letter”) from a U.S. consulate, has been stationed abroad under government orders, or is the spouse or child of a person stationed abroad under government orders. Otherwise, the applicant for admission as a conditional resident must have filed a joint petition or an application for waiver, Form I-751 (marriage-based cases) or Form I-829 (investment-based cases), in the U.S. within the 90 days before the second anniversary but not more than 6 months prior to the application for entry.

Once I-751 has been filed, the applicant will receive a receipt notice (I-797 Notice of Action) from USCIS, extending the conditional resident status for another year, allowing travel.

If none of those conditions exist, the inspector may defer the applicant to file Form I-751 or I-829 if there is reason to believe the Service will approve a petition or waiver. If the applicant is not admissible, CBP has authority to place him or her in removal proceedings.

Question of “Meaningful Departure” When examining a Green Card holder who has spent significant time abroad (usually more than six months), when there is a question as to whether the LPR may have abandoned his/her U.S. residence, the CBP inspector has to evaluate the situation and make a determination as to the LPR’s intent and the nature and reason for the prolonged absence from the United States. Prior to 1997, if a lawful permanent resident was believed to be inadmissible, immigration inspectors had to first make a determination whether his/her absence was “meaningfully interruptive” of permanent residence. Later revisions to immigration laws have formalized a ‘test’ for immigration inspectors to apply in this situation. Under this test, a lawful permanent resident is NOT considered to be seeking admission, unless the alien:

o has abandoned or relinquished that status;

o has been absent continuously for more than 180 days;

o has engaged in illegal activity after departing the U.S.;

o has departed under legal process seeking removal;

o has committed certain criminal offenses;

o is attempting entry without inspection; or

o has entered the U.S. without authorization by an immigration officer.

If CBP believes an LPR may be inadmissible or no longer entitled to lawful permanent resident status, CBP should refer the alien for removal proceedings if a deferred inspection is not appropriate.

Special Rules for Dependents of U.S. Service Members Spouses and children of U.S. Armed Forces servicemembers, or civilian employees of the U.S. Government, are exempt from many normal requirements for returning residents. If a dependent is a conditional resident, and the period of conditional residence has expired, CBP should admit the person and advise to file Form I-751 within 90 days.



Source by Steven A. Culbreath

Bringing Your New Puppy Home – The First 48 Hours

The much anticipated time has come. Today, you’re finally going to bring your new puppy home! You’ve spent many hours joyously waiting to bring your cuddly, furry little ball of fluff into your life. You’ve done your homework into what breed of dog would fit into you and your family’s lifestyle. You know how big he will get, and the basic temperament of the breed. You took into consideration how much yard space you have, and whether he will be a housedog, an outside dog, or somewhere in between. But before you actually bring your puppy home, you will need to make preparations and establish some guidelines.

The good care that you take of your puppy in the first 48 hours he is with you is very important. Don’t forget, he will be alone for the first time in his young life. His needs have been taken care of by his mother, and he sought his puppy mates for play and comfort. All of these things will be gone from his life when he comes home to live with you. But puppies are resilient. He will soon adapt to his new home, family and surroundings. Here’s a guide line for the first 48 hours of your puppy’s new life with you.

The first thing you need to do is puppy-proof your home and create a safe and friendly environment. Take all of your household poisonous cleaners out of the reach of your puppy. Do the same with any houseplants that are toxic to dogs. And lastly, look around in your house with a puppy’s perspective and remove any hazardous items, or any family heirlooms that you don’t want destroyed.

Next, make sure you have the appropriate supplies such as food and water bowls, a leach and collar and a brush and comb. Safe puppy toys such as stuffed animals can be found in your local pet store or Walmarts. Make sure that the toy is not too small. (If it can fit into his mouth comfortably then it is too small and the puppy could be endangered if he tries to swallow it. Choking can result.) A puppy crate with a bed is ideal to have in your home. This area will be his own little safe “cave”, where he can go to feel secure. You might also consider purchasing a puppy or baby gate to restrict your new puppy to certain areas in your home.

The transition your puppy will experience when he comes home to you can be made easier and more pleasant if you follow theses helpful tips:

Choose a name for you puppy and use it all of the time when addressing him. He will soon learn his name this way. For the first 2 days, try to limit visitors. Always watch over your puppy when he’s out of his crate or pen. This will keep him from harm and start to establish good social behavior. When your puppy is sleeping, don’t wake him! He needs all the rest he can get to grow properly. Do not leave your puppy unattended with small children or other pets in the beginning! Finally, to make the most out of your puppy and your relationship, you will want to start him on a puppy training program. There are many books and helpful tools on the market today. Find one you like, and stick to it religiously. Please visit SitAndHeel.com for more information on how to train your dog.

Using these guidelines and helpful hints, you will have a successful start with your new puppy.



Source by Diane Gray

Travel To Singapore – The Strict Entry Requirements To The Casinos

With the launch of the two integrated resorts in Singapore, this has opened up a flood gate of tourists visiting this wonderful city-state. In Singapore context, what is known as the integrated resorts is another meaning for a resort and casino complex.

The two resorts that have successfully obtained the licenses required to run a casino in Singapore are the Marina Bay Sands Resorts and Casino, run by the Sands Company which is headquartered in the United States, and Resorts World, run by Genting Group which is headquartered in Malaysia. Regardless of which integrated resort you visit, if you intend to visit the casino, you must abide to the strict rules in place. Here is a quick guide to the entry requirements to the casinos in Singapore.

Age Requirement

The minimum age requirement to enter the casino is 21 years of age. Anyone below that age is not allowed to enter.

Documents Requirement

For all visitors who are neither Singapore citizens nor holding any permanent residence status in Singapore, the only requirement is to bring their passports as a form of identification to prove that they are purely tourists from overseas and that they meet the minimum age requirements to enter the gambling areas. There is no levy fee for these types of visitors. If you qualify as this type of visitor, then you can simply line up in the foreign visitor’s lane while entering the gaming areas.

For visitors who are Singapore citizens or holding permanent residence status, they must present either their passports or national identification card, and also pay the mandatory 100S$ (Singapore dollar) levy fee. Please note that the levy fee only allows you to enter the casino for 24 hours from the time and date you paid the fee. After the 24 hours is up, then your current levy will expire and should you wish to stay longer, then you will need to pay the levy fee a second time in order to enter the casino for another 24 hours. To enter the gambling center as a Singaporean or permanent resident, you will need to line up in the lanes designated as “Singaporean citizen/ PR holder” to enter the gaming area.

Dress Code

For both integrated resorts at Marina Bay Sands and Resorts World, the dress code to enter the gaming areas is smart casual. Shorts, singlets, and “flip flop” slippers are not permitted. The security guard will check to ensure you meet the dress code before allowing you to enter.

By taking note of these entry requirements to the casinos of both integrated resorts in Singapore, it will help to ensure that you can enter the casinos as smoothly as possible.



Source by Alec Chan

Bitcoin Buying Guide – Easy 3-Step Guide to Buying Your First Bitcoin

Looking for a Bitcoin Buying Guide? Wondering where to start? People have a lot of misconceptions about bitcoin – the very first widely known and accepted cryptocurrency worldwide.

A lot of people think for example that only hackers and shady people use it. However bitcoin is actually going mainstream with everyone from TigerDirect to Expedia.com to Dell and even Subway accepting payments in bitcoin now.

Why so popular?

Well, bitcoin has a lot of benefits over other currencies. For example, you can send bitcoins to someone as payment without having to go through the bank middleman (and get hit with extra fees). It’s also much faster than sending money via a bank wire or transfer. You can send bitcoins to someone and have them receiving the coins in seconds.

With all of this, it’s no surprise that many people are now trying to buy bitcoin for the first time. However it’s not as easy as going to your bank and withdrawing bitcoins – or going to a store and plunking down some hard-earned cash for bitcoin.

The system works a bit differently than that. This Bitcoin Buying Guide will go over a few things you need to know before you buy – so you can buy safely and securely.

First of all, while the price might be over $2000 us per coin, you don’t have to buy an entire bitcoin. Most places will let you buy portions of a bitcoin for as little as $20. So you can start off small and go from there as you get more comfortable with the way things work.

Secondly, this article is for general purposes only and not to be taken as financial advice. Bitcoin can be risky and before making any purchase you should consult with your financial advisor to see if it’s right for you.

So here are 3 easy steps to buying Bitcoins:

#1 Get a Bitcoin Wallet

The first thing to do before you buy your coins is to get a virtual wallet to store your coins. This wallet is a string of text that people can use to send you bitcoins.

There are a number of different types of wallets including ones you download to your phone or computer, online wallets and even offline, cold storage wallets.

Most people prefer to get a wallet on their phone or computer. Popular wallets include Blockchain, Armory, Bitgo MyCelium and Xapo.

Usually it’s as simple as downloading the wallet to your phone as an app or downloading the software to your computer from the wallet’s main website.

#2 Decide Where to Buy

There are several types of places to buy and each one is a bit different. There are online sellers that will sell you bitcoins directly for cash (or bank wire or credit card).

There are exchanges where you can buy and sell bitcoins from others – similar to a stock market. There are also local exchanges that link you up with sellers in your area looking to sell.

There are also ATMs where you go to purchase with cash and get your coins delivered to your wallet in minutes.

Each bitcoin seller has their benefits and drawbacks. For example ATMs are great for privacy, but they’ll charge you up to 20% on top of the current price, which is ridiculous. (On a BTC price of $2000, that $400! So you’re paying $2400 instead of $2000).

No matter where you decide to buy, remember to do your research and go with a trusted seller with a good reputation and strong customer service. First time buyers will especially have questions and may need the extra support to help them with their first transaction.

Take your time and research the different places to buy before you decide. Factors to consider include coin prices, extra fees, method of payment and customer service.

#3 Buy Bitcoin and Move It To Your Wallet

Once you’ve found a place to buy, get your funds ready (i.e. you may send a wire transfer or use your Visa to fund your account). Then wait for a good price. (Bitcoin prices are always fluctuating 24 hours, 7 days a week). Then place your order when you’re ready.

Once your order is filled and you have your coins, you’ll want to send them to your wallet. Simply enter your bitcoin address and get the seller to send you your bitcoins. You should see them show up in your wallet within minutes to an hour (depending on how fast the seller sends them out).

Voila, you are now a bitcoin owner. You can now send coins to pay for other goods and services, or hang on to them for a rainy day.

One last thing to remember: bitcoin is still in its infancy. There are huge price swings and the currency can be risky. Never buy more bitcoins than you can afford to lose.



Source by Eric Summers

How to Open a Halfway House Or a Recovery Home

To begin with, let us tell you that this article is going to smash any preconceptions out there regarding opening a halfway house in the USA. You do not need a license, permit, or any other document to open a halfway house. If any person, government official, government agency, zoning commission, etc. tells you otherwise, they are engaging in illegal and unfair practices. Know your rights (see bellow links to know your rights).

NATIONAL LAWS (ADA) ALWAYS SUPERSEDE LOCAL LAWS.

Just for a hypothetical situation; let’s say that 3 people who have depression decide to become roommates in a home. Should they be shut down and kicked out of the neighborhood because of their disability? Does that mean they have to get a license or permit to stay? Of course not. They are protected under the ADA (Americans with Disabilities Act), as well as other determinations (see links below) against such discrimination. Havingchemically dependent persons in a home is no different!!! Alcoholics and addicts have the same laws to protect them.

It is a well known fact that City Councils have tried to stop halfway houses in their neighborhoods by stating that a halfway house with alcoholics and/or addicts, in other words disabled persons, (and alcoholics and addicts qualify as disabled under the ADA), must not have roommates (as in 2 people in a room at a house), which prevents most halfway houses from opening.

If you have a house, and you want to open a halfway house, and your mortgage payment is $700.00 per month (see additional expenses at the bottom of this paragraph), there are many things to consider before accepting residents into your house. Let’s say, hypothetically, you follow licensing and zoning guidelines. With the average charge to a resident with a substance abuse problem, being around $125.00 per week, you can see that if you went with what the license division / politicians tell you, (which are illegal tactics), you would be out of business shortly. Keep in mind that in addition to your mortgage payment are things such as: utilities, phone service, water, food, furniture, cooking utensils, beds, sheets- basically everything you would need to survive, etc.

On the other hand, if you did not license your house, you could put in 2 or 3 people in a room and keep your halfway house open. In other words, helping others to get a hand up at living sober. Please read more details below…

NATIONAL LAWS (ADA) ALWAYS SUPERSEDE LOCAL LAWS.

How to open a Recovery Home, Halfway House, Sober Living Home OR starting a Half Way House/Recovery Facility*- Resources to assist you. This article includes information on the standards and requirements of opening and operating a Halfway House/Recovery Home- NOTE: Not every county in the United States approaches standards and licensure in the same way- it is best to contact your local licensure department and/or zoning division.

The first thing you should know about opening a halfway house is that you do not need a degree or special certification to open one, and that most operate without a license/permit. Also, under the ADA (Americans with Disabilities Act) and The Fair Act Amendment, as well as other determinations, makes it illegal to discriminate against halfway houses and the people who own, operate, and live in them. Please see our links below for more information concerning these issues. There are a number of other important issues to cover concerning opening a halfway house that are vital to know.

You must first decide where you will operate. Once you have determined a location you have a choice in whether to license* the facility or not. There are also other permits, inspections, zoning variances, etc. to explore prior to opening up a halfway house. Please keep in mind that it is your choice whether to obtain a license, permit, and other certifications for the operation of a halfway house. If you choose to open a halfway house without a license, there are certain parameters you must operate under to make sure you are not shut down by the county/city you operate within. It is always best to check into what is required, allowed, and not allowed by contacting your local licensure agency and zoning department.

Most halfway houses that are not licensed are mandated to NOT provide on-site counseling or other wrap-around services- to avoid additional

paperwork and hassles, you could provide these services at a local church or other building. Most halfway houses that are licensed may need to

obtain a zoning variance, simply because (in the eyes of politicians) you are basically operating a business in a residential area. You may find that

because you are licensing it, the county (Zoning Commission) will limit the number of people you can have in any one room and at any one residence.

A halfway house that is going through the licensing process (and this may take months, even years to work out) will be required to have certain

structural adaptations made (water/fire sprinkler lines installed- which is very expensive) wheel chair accessible, parking and traffic issues to deal with, etc.

There are some overhead details to work out before you start taking in residents. You should know how many residents you will have in each room, what you are going to charge each resident, and what services are included in this cost or rent. You may also have to contend with residents coming in with no money, or that some residents will be late and/or short of the entire rent monies owed. It’s up to you how you handle these situations. If you have a house ready to use as a Halfway House (providing you have decided whether to license it or not) and your mortgage payment, for a 4 bedroom home, is $700.00 per month (estimate), you will also need to factor in start-up and continued costs like food costs per week, water and utility costs, household needs, (paper towels, toilet paper, dish soap, cleaning chemicals, phones, etc.), as well as monthly and yearly costs, (beds and sheets, TV, computer(s), Internet connection, towels and face clothes, shampoo, dishes and utensils, pest control services, vucuum(s), maintenance, etc.)- basically everything you would need if you were starting from scratch in a new home (considering you have nothing on hand) only this time it is for X number of people. Also include additional items, if licensed, like license and permit charges, health inspection fees, reports, paperwork and filing, accounting, etc. With the above example you can clearly see that many licensure and zoning variances would limit you to having only 4 people at your house, so meeting your overhead is not possible- you would be operating in the red every month.

Fair Housing Act

A case in point (actual court case) in which, for a period of more than 1 year, a city violated the provisions stated within the Fair Housing Amendments

Act (Title VIII of the Civil Rights Act of 1968, as amended by the Fair Housing Amendments Act of 1988, 42 U.S.C. §§3601-3619) and denied the operating of a Halfway House within a residential area.

In an effort to assist individuals, agencies, religious affiliations, etc. open recovery places and tackle the unfair and illegal tactics politicians and others are using to stop them, NICD has put together some basic, and very needed, resources to aid in the journey. Counties are using zoning

codes/variances to try and control halfway houses/sober living homes and the total census allowed within these centers. Some of the bias is a

NIMBY, (Not In My Back Yard) situation, while others include property value concerns. In any case, the reasons for discrimination and unfair tactics are not based on fact or material circumstances. These counties and individuals are in violation of the law as it relates to the ADA, (Americans With Disabilities Act), Section 36.209 section 510 which describes alcoholics/drug addicts as people with disabilities. The Federal Fair Housing Act, (see link below), 42 USC section 3604(f)(2) makes it unlawful “to discriminate against any person in the terms, conditions, or privileges of sale or rental of a dwelling, or in the provision of services or facilities in connection with such dwelling because of a handicap.” The 42 USC section 3604(f)(3)(B) provides that unlawful discrimination includes failure to make “reasonable accommodations in rules, policies, practices.

providing some resources that you can use in starting up a program.

There are numerous obstacles to overcome in trying to open up a halfway house for alcoholics and/or drug addicts. NICD will attempt to help you by

Note: Please feel free to copy/print this page, as we have waived the copyright for this page only.

Some additional concerns you may encounter:

The next section has some rules that should be a part of any quality run halfway house. In addition to these is a section for navigating your way

through getting your residents into benefits and entitlements.

Specific: Halfway Houses Rules- A good halfway house should have rules. We have constructed some that we feel are essential.

RULES & REGULATIONS

IMMEDIATE DISCHARGE

*Being under the influence of alcohol and/or drugs

*Possession of alcohol/drugs

*Possession of weapons

*Threats either verbal or physical, or acts of violence, fighting

*Property destruction or altering the physical construction of the premises, including interior walls

*Failure to submit a U/A (which are always at your cost)

*Unaccountable or discrepancies in times off of premises

*Lies, either found on your intake paperwork or otherwise, stealing, unusual behavior, and any criminal activity

*Failure to comply with rules and/or staff directions

1. You are required to attend at least 3 12-Step meetings per week, have a program book, (Big Book, NA Text, etc.), and have your meeting slip

signed by a member of the group, and not another resident, and attend on-premises “House Meetings” which are held 2 times per week, 1-2 hours per meeting.

2. House meeting attendance is mandatory, (which means you must arrange for employment that does not interfere with these meetings), there are

no exceptions to this rule.

3. For the first 30 days you are to remain on premises, (during this time you are expected to be working on your steps), and must arrange 12-Step meeting attendance with another resident who is not on restriction, and this must be pre-approved by the house manager.

4. You are required to sign-out when leaving the premises, and sign-in upon return- all leaves must be pre-approved by the house manager in

advance, and any inconsistencies in leave times are grounds for discharge.

5. Rent must be paid every Friday directly to the house manager, and kept up to date without exception.

6. You must see the house manager at least 1 time per week to discuss your recovery program- it does not count as a visit to discuss program while paying rent, unless the house manager chooses to do so.

7. You must obtain a Home Group and a Sponsor (You must provide a contact name and phone number), within the first week of residency, and this will be verified.

8. You must have Steps 1,2, and 3 in writing, and present these in the House Meeting by the 3rd week, along with a copy to the house manager.

9. You are required to be employed full time, and you are not permitted to quit a job without first discussing it with the house manager, (employment status will be checked on periodically).

10. There are certain types of employment that are not allowed, and you must speak with the house manager

11. No cab driving, working in bars, clubs, or places that sell alcohol.

12. Your room must be kept neat, with your bed made at all times, rugs vacuumed, toilet cleaned, kitchen area clean, which means absolutely no

glasses, dishes, forks, knives, spoons, etc. left in the sink at any time, and any trash disposed of in a timely manner.

13. You will be assigned daily and weekend chores (these are mandatory as part of your stay).

14. All vehicles will have current tags and insurance, and this must be verifiable. Also, there will be no storage of vehicles, and no working on vehicles on the premises.

15. Bikes and other modes of transportation must be stored in the appropriate locations, and security for these are at your own cost.

16. Any situation that requires police involvement must be discussed with the house manager before the police are called, (any police involvement

without house manager approval will be grounds for discharge).

17. There are absolutely no visitors allowed on premises without prior approval from the house manager.

18. There will be no congregating outside, no loud music or discussions, no walkmans, caps, sunglasses, bandanas, or inappropriate dress allowed, and you are required to attend to daily hygiene needs.

19. No one is allowed in another residents room- period.

20. There are no sharing of clothes, personal property, loaning money, borrowing vehicles, including bikes by either staff or residents.

21. You may be requested to submit to a U/A at any time, which may include either with cause or without.

22. Any resident who is aware of a rules infraction and does not notify the house manager immediately will be subject to discharge, which includes

finding out later that you knew about it.

23. All rooms are subject to inspections at any given time, and any room that does not pass inspection may cause all residents in that room to be

discharged.

24. Smoking is not allowed in rooms.

25. There will be no illegal hook-ups of cable, or use of cable boxes. Cable hook-ups will be done legally, at your cost, and your risk. If bills are not current you will be required to cut-off services until the bill is paid for.

26. Phone hook-ups are your responsibility, as are the bills that go along with it.

27. Any cooking done by residents requires immediate clean-up.

28. Any delegation, directive, or request that is made by staff will then become a rule.

29. Any medical conditions and/or injuries must be brought to the attention of the house manager.

30. Calls to 911 for medical conditions, injuries, etc. must be approved by the house manager before calling.

31. If there is an emergency, call 911, and then notify the house manager immediately.

32. Any and all medications, including pain pills, psych. meds, aspirin, Advil, cold, flu, sinus, etc. will be kept, and locked up by the house manager and dispensed according to the instructions on the bottle- any Rx. or

33. House shut downs will occur if chores are not done, the grounds and buildings are not cared for, rooms are not kept clean, or general attitudes are not in line with house etiquette, and is done so at the discretion of the house manager.

34. All rules and regulations are subject to additions and changes at the house managers discretion.

This is not a complete list of all the possible rules and/or violations that may happen, so to insure a healthy, happy, drug and alcohol free recovery

environment please do your part to use common sense when it comes to either doing or not doing something that may affect yours and others

continued stay.

Finally, staff will not take the role of cop, lawyer, or investigator. This means discharges will occur without investigation of who did what, what was said, who is, or who is not at fault.

The NIMBY Syndrome, (Not In My Back Yard), is one area that an owner of a recovery home / halfway house will have to contend with. It is usually best to address this issue up front before you open, or before construction is started. Your local Zoning Commission office should be able to provide information on the area you plan on opening the halfway house in. The census bureau can provide information on the neighborhoods make up, (economic base, average salaries made, gender average, average cost of homes in the area, and other good information to educate yourself with).

Check to see if there is a homeowners association, as that could be your best bet in getting to know your neighbors, and them getting to know you.

You should plan on going to one of their meetings before you open, but definitely after you have been armed with the information that you know will come up for discussion. Some concerns will be on whether or not you will accept violent offenders, psychiatrically unstable residents, how your home will affect property values. You can convince people that you plan on running a safe, drug free, and strict program by bringing a copy of your intake protocol and halfway house rules. Let them know how you plan on handling the situation when one of your residents comes up positive on a drug

screen. You should develop, in writing, protocols for dealing with this and other situations- there should be a plan of action that all staff and residents are to follow in any given situation. There will be some fear there, as no one wants a drug addict discharged/kicked out in their neighborhood at 1:00 A.M. on a weekend or any other time.

You need to arm yourself with the facts and also how you will handle all sorts of possible situations. If you take the lead and let your neighbors know, before they ask, what they can expect from you, you will go far in gaining their trust. Just be sure you follow through as you promised. It will pave the way to open another site, if you want to, if you have a great relationship with those that live around your halfway house.

In six major studies of communities where halfway houses were opened, no significant change in average housing prices could be found (MacNeil & Kappel, 1986, Part III.A.).



Source by Stephen Murray

5 Ways to Get Rid of Pet Hair in Your Home

Our dogs and cats can bring smiles to our faces and joy to our hearts, but those little fur balls also leave hair all over our households. Pet hair is a real nuisance. It’s big enough so that your neighbors can see it on your couch, yet too small to pick up with just your hands. It collects not only on our fabric furniture and carpets, but our clothing as well. In addition, pet hair can often cause allergic reactions not only in humans but surprisingly in pets as well. Let’s face it, pet hair is not an easy thing to clean, but these five tips should help keep life a little less hairy.

Use Lint Roller. While you should try to keep your pet off of your furniture and out of your closet, the lint roller can be a very effective tool for removing hair from those attracting surfaces. Simply grab the handle and roll the adhesive surface up, down and across any item. The sticky surface grabs each strand and when you’re done, you just peel off the old piece and a new one is there under it ready for use. Also, mainly used for big pieces of furniture like couches and chairs, sticky sheets are extremely effective for hair removal. Sticky Sheet act like the lint roller except it’s larger and more adhesive. It is made up of a large transparent piece of plastic with a sticky surface on one side. You apply the sheet with your hand on the desired surface and then peel away. One sheet should be able to de-hair all of the furniture in your living room. Keep in mind furniture is only half the battle.

Vacuum Often. Our rugs are where our cats and dogs spend must of their time so, maintaining their cleanliness is not always the easiest task. A vacuum is a necessity when it comes to owning a pet, but you can’t just own it; you have to use it all the time. I know it sounds tedious, but it’s completely necessary in maintaining rugs, drapes and furniture. We recommend to all our Denver house cleaning clients to get small vacuums with detachable handles, which would allow you to get into all the nooks and crannies.

Brush Your Pets Regularly. Brushing your cats and dogs everyday, outside removes dead, unwanted hair and gets rid of tangles and decreases the amount of hair that ends up in your house in the first place.

Wash Your Carpet. Giving your cat or dog a bath twice a week will greatly decrease you’re the amount of hair around the house. Similar to brushing, shampooing and scrubbing your pets coat will get rid of dead hair and moisturize the skin making the follicles stronger. Try Anti-Allergen Solution. This shampoo will not only decrease shedding but, it will clear up dander for your allergic friends.

Hire a professional cleaning service. This could be the first step in the process if the pet hair problem is out of control, hiring a professional crew will give you a head start on controlling the hair problem in the long run.



Source by Yelena M Gertsenova

How To Do – Tax-Free Income Overseas

What closely is the Foreign Earned Income Exclusion? The IRS defines it like this:

“For this target, distant earned revenue returns you collect for navy you make in an unknown country during an epoch your tax home is in an exotic country and during which you meet each the genuine residence suffering or the bodily aura check.”

On the other lexis, money earned for work performed by those residing overseas qualifies for the exclusion. There are two customs to qualify for this exclusion. One is to be a genuine resident. Taxpayers can quality for this when they are genuine residents overseas for an uninterrupted phase over a whole tax year. The other is to authorize the objective presence examine. This is distinct by the IRS as “if the taxpayer is physically there in a overseas country or countries 330 ample being during a stop of 12 consecutive months.”

Earned takings is clear as the salaries, wages, bonuses and professional fees that are salaried for military performed while running overseas. Therefore, return such as money gains, dividends, royalties etc. ensign while overseas are still lawfully rateable.

However, even although dividends and other unjust earnings are not debarred from taxes, the exotic earned wages exclusion still lowers the time at which these incomes are taxed. For example, if all the taxpayers earned earnings is excluded, their tax liability starts with their unjust revenue. If the full of the unearned wages is minus than their deductions, they still will not owe the IRS any taxes. If the profits exceeds their standard deductions, the tax pace paid should still be reduce since their deducted earned profits does not push unearned takings into an upper tax band.

However, running overseas is not a tax-unbound paradise for most people. The foremost analyze is that, distant from a few exceptions, most countries have wages taxes too and typically tax external employees at the same degree they would tax their own citizens. These toll was sometimes superior to US charge.

Still, in sometimes older areas of the law, distant employees regularly steal under the tax radar. Also, different public tax jurisdictions usually do not work together. With revenue in different countries, it is unlikely any one tax jurisdiction will know the full earnings for any release taxpayer, especially if that taxpayer is a foreigner.

Why does the US government give this exemption? The chief deduced given is the competitiveness of US employees overseas. If overseas US people have to pay US taxes while effective overseas (many nations do not tax their nationals running overseas at all), US personnel will be relatively more luxurious to employ than those from countries that do not tax citizens effective overseas.

Also, while American effective overseas are not commonly using taxpayer funded military, they regularly pump money into the US reduced when the send money back, store on trips to the US and other occasions. Thus, there are monetary advantages provided by Americans working overseas.

The overseas tax exclusion does have obvious tax advantages. However, these advantages are not as great as one might think on first glance, and there are lucrative reasons for bountiful this tax vacation.



Source by Karen Watson

Buying a Property in Romania – Real Estate Law in Romania

If you are looking to buy a holiday or second home or invest in Romania, Transylvania or at the Black Sea and you are a foreign citizen/investor, there are few aspects you should know about the procedure an the costs for the acquisition of Romanian land or Romanian houses.

After 2012, foreign citizens EU citizens (non-Romanian) may purchase a home or apartment in Romania may freely buy and sell any Romanian property, without restrictions. Along with the sell price for the property, buying real estate in Romania has other costs associated with it.

If you have chosen to collaborate with a Romanian real estate agent/ broker you can expect to have an additional commission of approximately 2-4% of the price of the property. The local tax will be 2-4% of the price of the property. The signing of a contract must be witnessed by a public notary who submits it for certification by the Land Registry in charge of real estate records. The fees for the Romanian public notary is about 0.5-1% of the purchase price. You will also have to pay fees to the Land Registry (“Cartea Funciara”) to register the Transfer Deed. The Romanian Land Registry Fee for a purchase of a property will vary from 1-3% according to the length of time that the seller had owned the property and the property’s value.

The Romanian law on property states that Citizens of EU member states, legal persons incorporated in the EU member states and stateless people domiciled in an EU member state can purchase land in Romania only if the land is used for secondary residences or for secondary headquarters after a 5 (five) years term from the accession of Romania to the EU (starting with January 1st, 2012); only for the agricultural land and forest land 7 (seven) years term from the accession of Romania to the EU ( starting with January 1st, 2014).

But for the Citizens, legal persons and stateless people not from a EU member state, the Romanian legal system establishes that they can purchase land in Romania, under the conditions of international treaties between Romania and the states of origin on these persons, under a reciprocity basis.

In our point of view, a prudent investor will hire a Romanian lawyer/ a Romanian Law Office, who will liaise closely with the notary on the verification of the title, obtaining the Land Registry excerpt and the drafting of the agreement for the transfer of ownership of the real estate. This means that the Romanian lawyer will be solely acting for and is responsible to his or her client, whereas the notary will not have the same degree of responsibility to the purchaser.

Under Romanian law there are three basic rights to land and buildings such as right of ownership; usage rights as lease, usufruct, superficies; concession right. The principle of contractual liberty represents the key core of the property law in Romania.

Sometimes, an investor/purchaser can opt for closing a pre-sale agreement, by which the seller undertakes to transfer ownership to the buyer at a certain date in exchange for an agreed consideration. The content of the pre-sale contract will stipulate all commercial and legal conditions for the transfer of ownership, as conditions precedent to the final transfer of ownership. The closing of such pre-contract for purchase does not means the transfer over the property, but the stipulate binding obligations for the parties, in regard to, as example, damages or penalties set out in them, if the seller refuses to sign the final notarized deed of transfer at the agreed deadline.

The closing of the pre-sale agreement is to protect the investor/buyer from any possible purchase to other buyers and to matters regarding the fixed price and duration of a future purchase. In our point of view, it is a must that the pre-sale agreement to be concluded at a Public Notary and clearly stipulate the sale price and other clauses regarding duration of future purchase. In this case, it can be enforced in court on the buyer’s request as a deed to transfer ownership.

A sale agreement signed in Romania, according to the Romanian legislation will mandatory stipulate: obligations of the parties for the fulfillment of the sale contract, delivery and quality conditions of goods and/or services, terms, payment methods and payment guarantees, payment instruments and price insurance, contractual risk, as well as method of solving eventual litigations arising from the contract. Other required elements include the full name and identification details of the parties (for legal entities) and name of the person signing the contract (representing a legal entity).

Our team of romanian lawyers offer a wide variety of legal services in the real estate law http://www.lawyersinromania.com



Source by Simona Rotaru

What to Expect at Your First Community Theatre Audition

Whether or not you have any acting experience, going to a community theatre audition for the first time can be intimidating. What’s the process? What will you be asked to do? Who will be looking at you?

Hopefully, a little preparation in terms of what to expect will help you have an enjoyable experience.

Expect to do some preparation

If at all possible, read the play. It is surprising how many actors don’t do this, and directors do take note of their lack of preparation. Many groups make a perusal copy available at the local library. If they don’t, try to get a copy at the library or from Amazon or from the company that handles the performance rights to the play.

Some amateur theatres make downloadable sides available online prior to the tryouts. Sides are the excerpts from the play that the actors will read.

If the group does not provide sides and you are unable to get the script, Google the play title and get as much information as you can. There may be a movie version that you can watch. At the very least, reviews of other productions will give you an idea of the play’s theme, style and characters.

Expect the audition to take place almost anywhere

Most groups have an extremely limited budget. For this reason, tryouts may not take place in the theatre where the show will be performed. They may be held in a public space, such as a town hall or library. They may be held in a church basement or boiler room. They may even be held at the home of the director or another member of the production team.

Expect to fill out a form

After you arrive, you will be asked to fill out an information form. In addition to contact information, the form will ask about your previous theatre experience. If you have none, don’t be afraid to say so – even Meryl Streep had to start somewhere. If your experience is limited to playing a pansy in your first grade play, claim that role proudly.

Another section of the form covers any conflicts you may have with the rehearsal schedule. Be honest when filling out this section, even if you feel it might affect your chances of being cast in the show. Bring your schedule with you so you can note any dates you are not available to rehearse. Directors expect that they will have to work around actors’ conflicts to a certain extent, but nothing irritates them more than suddenly learning that one of their actors “forgot” to mention his upcoming two-week Caribbean cruise. And directors, like elephants, never forget!

You’ll also be asked what role or roles you are reading for and whether you will accept another role or backstage responsibility. Again, be honest. Directors will not penalize you if you are unwilling to take a different role or work backstage. While accepting another role (either onstage or off) will give you the opportunity to establish yourself with the group, it is still a major time commitment. Think it through before volunteering.

Some forms include a section where you can list special skills. If you juggle, do gymnastics, play a musical instrument, sing, dance, fence, or are great at accents, be sure to list those skills. They may give you an edge over the competition.

Expect to feel like an outsider

You will probably find that most of the people at the reading already know each other. They’ll greet each other with hugs, kisses and exclamations of delight. You may feel awkward, but try not to let it affect your confidence. Remember, each one of these people was once an outsider.

Also remember that theatre people are generally quite friendly and welcoming. Don’t be afraid to start a conversation with the person in the next seat. Ask them if they’ve worked with the group before and what the experience was like. If you’ve seen one of the actors onstage, tell him or her that you enjoyed the show.

If you are very shy, consider bringing a friend with you for emotional support.

Expect any number of people to be watching you

Some theatres take a formal approach to auditions. Actors are requested to wait in a lobby or anteroom until the director is ready to see them individually. If you are given an appointment time prior to the reading, that’s a pretty good sign that you’ll be seen either alone or with just one or two others.

Most community theatres, however, take the meaning of “community” to heart and all the actors sit in the same room.

Expect to do a cold reading

A cold reading is simply reading a scene from the script with other actors. The director will assign the parts you read based on your suitability in terms of age and sex, as well as the information on your form. You may be asked to read for one character or for several. You may be asked to read the same scene several times as different characters or you may read the same character in several scenes.

If you suddenly find a new character appealing to you, don’t be afraid to ask the director to read for that role.

After you read, wait until the director or stage manager dismisses you before leaving.

Expect the unexpected

Theatre groups sometimes request that actors bring a monologue to the tryouts. This is generally specified in the audition notice. However, directors have been known ask for a monologue on the spur of the moment, so it’s a good idea to be prepared.

A monologue is a one- to two-minute memorized speech that involves only one character. The best way to find good monologues is to read plays and look for speeches that appeal to you. You can also find books of monologues at any large bookstore or online.

The director may also ask you to improvise a scene using your own words, tell a joke or read from a Dr. Seuss book. The key to dealing with unexpected requests is to have fun and understand that the director is just trying to get to know you better.

Expect that a starring role may have to wait

Don’t get discouraged if you don’t get cast in the show or don’t get cast in the role you wanted. Most directors, even if faced with an obviously talented individual, tend to cast actors they have already worked with. This is usually due to unhappy experiences they have had with unknowns who proved to be irresponsible after being cast.

Also, there are many considerations that go into casting a play. Remember that the director is looking for the right combination of actors, not just the right actor.

If you’re persistent, the right role will come along. And at the next audition, you’ll be a full-fledged member of the group!

Summary

Trying anything for the first time can be nerve-wracking. Knowing a little about what to expect can turn your first audition from frightening to fun. And that’s what community theatre is all about — the joy of working together to delight an audience.

Copyright 2012 Wendy Almeida



Source by Wendy Almeida

Bullmastiff Puppies – How to Select the Right One

If you are looking for a dog to protect your home when you are out of it then you need to go for best available option called “bullmastiffs”. It is originally cross of mastiff and bulldog. They were discovered in 1924 and used to work as an estate protector dogs. Presently, they are considered among the most desired dog breeds especially to have as a pet at residence. Thus, contemporary people prefer to have Bullmastiff puppies as pets.

Tips or ideas on how to select a right Bullmastiff puppy

In case, you have already planned to have a bullmastiff puppy then you need to go through stated below significant tips or ideas to select right one.

  • You should be very careful while selecting the “bullmastiff puppies” for your home. For instance, if you have already brought a male bullmastiff then you are not suppose to bring another male at your home instead you need to select right female bullmastiff to get best result.
  • Always remember, they are very aggressive dogs hence you should be ready with a “well-planned-strategy” to handle them. For this, you may also take help from a reputed dog trainer.
  • Remember, these kinds of dogs are perfect choice if you reside in an apartment. The reason behind is that they normally love to stay inside the residence thus this habit make them a perfect choice as a home-protector-dog.
  • It is a proven fact that they cannot survive in extreme weather conditions whether hot or cold. So, you need to maintain your home’s temperature according to their natural “tolerance-level”.
  • Moreover, while selecting “Bullmastiff puppies”, you should first decide the purpose for that you are going to select them. For instance, if you reside alone at your home and most of the times remain outside of your home then you need to reconsider adopting a Bullmastiff puppy. The main reason behind is that they are not likely to remain alone at home for a long time as they may be get psychologically disturbed. But, you need not worry at all as if you train them properly; they will be able to stay in residence alone for a long time.
  • Furthermore, once you have decided to have a bullmastiff dog as a pet then you should know your future responsibilities to handle it. According to dogs experts; their breed requires a great amount of attention while training. In case, you adopt them without giving proper training then you may probably turn them into more destructive dogs. Hence, you have to give lots of time to them in order to train them properly for your purpose.
  • Another significant point that you need to keep in mind while selecting a “bullmastiff puppy” is that you should make sure that its breeding should be uncontaminated bullmastiffs with great physical health.
  • Like all other contemporary dog-lovers, you too want to have a big breed of bullmastiff. So, you need not to worry as they may grow about 27″ if properly bred. It is a well known fact that bigger dogs could be better as they are excellent guards to your residence. However, you need to teach them how to react or behave properly so that visitors at your home won’t get scared.

In concise, knowing “how to choose the right Bullmastiff puppies” is really important. Hence, you are not supposed to make mistakes while selecting a right one as they will remain with you at your residence for some years.



Source by David Philips