Call NOW!

Tuesday, February 24, 2015

When things go bad all you need to do is pick up the phone and CALL. Or so lawyers like Saul on AMC’s new series tells us. Since the US Supreme Court allowed lawyers to advertise in the 1970s, practices like these have skyrocketed, with often shoddily-produced results. Are tacky lawyer ads trashing the profession or simply making it more easily accessible to those who might not otherwise know who to call when they need an attorney?


The Diaper Wars

Tuesday, February 10, 2015

In the 1980's, the world's two largest diaper companies set out to destroy each other, in a patent battle known as the Diaper Wars. The court battles lasted seven years and cost millions of dollars. What did we get out of it? Better diapers -- and one very messy lesson in patent law.


Life After Doxing

Tuesday, January 27, 2015

If you’re constantly harassed by someone in real life, you can get a restraining order. But can the law protect you when you are threatened online? Ann Marie Awad has the story.


Boiled Angel

Tuesday, January 13, 2015

Freedom of speech is a right guaranteed in the First Amendment of the U.S. Constitution. One exception to the rule is obscenity. But determining what is obscene is difficult – especially for the very people making it.


Life of the Law End-of-Year Special: Redemption Stories

Tuesday, December 23, 2014

Life of the Law looks back over some of our favorite stories from the year — the ones that left us hopeful.


One Conjugal Visit

Tuesday, December 02, 2014

How long would your relationship last without a kiss or more than a kiss? In America, only three states allow prisoners and their spouses or domestic partners to have extended family visits, also known as conjugal visits or on the inside, “booty calls." It's a place and time where couples can have privacy and they can have legally sanctioned sex. This is the story of one couple and the 48-hour conjugal visit they share once a month inside San Quentin State Prison.


Fair Share

Tuesday, November 18, 2014

The producers at Life of the Law teamed up with the producers at the podcast Destination DIY to take a look at the legal grey area occupied by the sharing economy. How are cities grappling with these increasingly popular, disruptive, peer-to-peer business models?


Living With Wolves

Tuesday, November 04, 2014

Returning wolves to the West has tested the legal system’s tolerance for restoring wild animals to places not entirely wild. ­The Endangered Species Act is at the center of a debate that will determine how that rugged landscape will look in the future and whether it includes humans and wolves.


There Oughta Be A Law

Tuesday, October 21, 2014

In Tennessee, it’s illegal for grocery stores to sell wine, but perfectly legal for passengers to ride in cars and drink alcohol. At the state level, legislators have fought for years over how (or whether) to rework these two rules. And there’s no question that the federal government wants states like Tennessee to pass tougher open container laws that would put a stop to drinking in cars all together. The hope is stricter laws would prevent costly accidents, and even deaths. As bait, the federal government offers millions of dollars in funding that states can use to fund transportation projects and new jobs. But, unlike most states, Tennessee has yet to bite, instead choosing to allow its residents the right to crack open a cold frosty one from the passenger seat. So what is it with these local laws that don’t seem to make sense? It turns out the process of making a laws isn’t always as logical as might think.


In The Name Of The Father

Tuesday, October 07, 2014

The Scottsboro Boys are infamous — nine black teenagers falsely accused and convicted of raping two white women. Last year, the state of Alabama finally exonerated all nine. But what does a pardon means 82 years after the fact? And what does forgiveness look like after so many years? Story by Producer Ashley Cleek


Who Owns That Joke?

Tuesday, September 23, 2014

Comedian Carlos Mencia is notorious for stealing other comics’ jokes. But he’s never been sued—in fact, there are almost no lawsuits in comedy. On this episode of Life of the Law, what the law means to comics, and what they do when it can’t help them.


Abuse, Abduction and International Law

Monday, September 08, 2014

What happens when one parent takes a child across international borders without the other parent’s permission? In 1980, the United States and international partners created a treaty that lays out the rules for what federal officials are supposed to do ...

Comments [1]

Two Sides of a River

Tuesday, July 22, 2014

Sometimes what’s considered as socially acceptable behavior can also be technically unlawful. Reporter Jason Albert follows one city as it grapples with how to enforce laws in a public park without unnecessarily restricting public use.


One Reporter on California’s Death Row

Thursday, July 17, 2014

What do we really know about death row in California? When we don’t know we create, we imagine.


Jailhouse Lawyers

Tuesday, July 08, 2014

In California, there are hundreds if not thousands of people practicing criminal law though they’ve never passed a bar exam. They don’t wear suits. They don’t have secretaries. And they can’t bill for their time. They’re called Jailhouse Lawyers.


Jury Nullification

Tuesday, June 24, 2014

Though jurors are sworn to uphold the law during their deliberation, they still have the power to decide that a defendant is innocent even when all signs point to their guilt. Prosecutor Paul Butler traces the ways this hidden process was a boon for ab...


The Right To Beg

Tuesday, June 10, 2014

Standing in the empty parking lot of a Subway store in Springfield, Illinois, Don Norton unfolds a ragged cardboard poster and holds it just below his chest. The sign, which reads, ‘Please help any way you can,


The Necessity Defense

Tuesday, May 20, 2014

It’s odd to think cannibals, cannabis-growers, Vietnam War protesters, and prison escapees all have something in common. But they do: the necessity defense. We explore the origins and uses of this rare long-shot defense argument, which says in essence,


The Hardest Time: Moms in Prison

Tuesday, May 06, 2014

Mother’s Day is the one day of the year we set aside to honor mothers. Some do it with flowers and cards. For women who are in prison and their children who are being raised by grandmothers, aunts or guardians on the outside,


Privacy Issues

Tuesday, April 22, 2014

You’re driving your car down a street and as you pass, a camera takes a photo of your license plate. Who is taking the photo and what are they doing with the information? Reporter Cyrus Farivar has our story.