Dutchess County Lawyer answers most common questions to help clients save time and maintain social distancing

Dutchess County Lawyer answers most common questions to help clients save time and maintain social distancing

Dutchess County Lawyer answers most common questions to help clients save time and maintain social distancing

After the Covid-19 restrictions, Courts in Dutchess County, NY are now open for e-filing. Holding off on hiring a lawyer for your divorce at this time can have significant legal consequences. File today and avoid court backlogs and extended wait times. Move forward today with the Law Office of Kevin Mackay.

Before hiring a lawyer in Dutchess County, NY for your divorce, child custody, criminal matter, dui, personal injury case or any other serious legal matter please make sure you ask the following questions.

For the sake of transparency and to save time during your free consultation with the Law Office of Kevin MacKay here are some questions answered for you.

1. How long have you been practicing law? I have been practicing law for 27 years.

2. How many trials have you done? How often do you settle vs try a case? I have done hundreds of trials in divorce actions, family court proceedings and criminal proceedings ranging from traffic matters to murder cases. While many cases do settle, I will never let my clients settle for anything less than they deserve, I am a litigation attorney and will take any case to trial to get the best results for my clients.

3. How much of your practice is devoted to my legal needs? While I practice different areas of law I concentrate mostly on matrimonial and criminal law. I will never take on a case that I was not 100% confident that I can meet your needs and represent you to the best of my abilities.

4. Will you be the attorney appearing in court with me? How do I know you are personally going to handle my case? Just because you say so in your commercial? Yes, I will be appearing with you in Court. I keep in contact with my clients to discuss all aspects of the case, not only will I be handling your case but I keep you involved every step of the way.


5. If necessary to send another attorney in your place to Court with me will you be briefing that attorney to avoid unnecessary Court appearances? While there are times when it is necessary to ask another attorney to cover a court appearance I try to avoid this. In the event that it be 100% necessary that I must ask for attorney coverage: I will only send in an attorney who is experienced in the area of law. I will make sure the covering attorney has all necessary documents and knowledge of your case to provide the best representation on your behalf.

6. Who will be working on my file? I will be working on your file as well as my paralegal.

7. Can I reach you directly in an emergency? Yes, not only am I reachable 24 hours a day 7 days a week through my office phone, I also provide my clients with my cell phone number to reach me in an emergency.

8. What is your client caseload and do you have time to handle my case? Caseloads can fluctuate based upon difference factors. I do not take every case that comes into my office. If I feel that I cannot give your case the time and attention it deserves I will advise you of that and recommend you seek a different attorney.

9. What access do you have to up to date case law and legal research? My office uses Lexis Advance. I have tried other legal research programs but find this is the best.

Contact a Divorce Lawyer in Hudson Valley

Most of us marry intending to stay that way for the rest of our lives. As you know, this doesn’t always mean much, as the divorce rates are rather high. Though there are some that just don’t take marriage seriously, others really try and they end up with a relationship that simply cannot be saved. We know how important family is for our clients.

If you have tried all that you can, and you find that you still can’t stay, you should find a great source for divorce advice. Our divorce lawyer aims to provide legal assistance and representation in family law disputes and tries to find the best solution for you and those you mostly care about.

Dutchess County, NY Criminal Lawyers

Dutchess County, NY Criminal Lawyers

Dutchess County, NY Criminal Lawyers – Free or not to be free, the choice is yours.

Whether you are facing a charge for a violent crime, white collar crime, murder, embezzlement, drugs, or a DWI our Poughkeepsie criminal lawyers have the skills, experience and judgment needed to help you. Call now for a free consultation!

In Dutchess County, NY it’s easy to get a public defender. The public defender finds most accused as indigent without much of a review of the persons financial resources.  This is a double edged sword, on the one hand you can easily qualify for a free attorney and on the other hand everyone can easily qualify for a free attorney.  You will be one of hundreds. So, if you or a family member is currently represented by the public defender then you know that it is difficult to reach your defense attorney because they may not be able to devote the time necessary to your case, potentially overlooking key facts or legal issues that could greatly affect your life.

NY Criminal Lawyers - Call SMANDB Now for a Free consultation

https://www.nytimes.com/2018/ 01/18/opinion/public- defenders-new-york.html

The law firm of Kevin MacKay is built on a reputation of integrity and skill in successfully representing individuals against criminal prosecutions in the Hudson Valley. We have been successful in representing local Hudson Valley clients at the investigative stage, discovery stage, motion practice stage, pre-trial hearing stage, and of course at trial.  We have the time necessary to handle one of the most important events and decisions in your life!

Save a buck and lose your life or call today to have a personal one on one free consultation with a lawyer about your situation, or if you prefer, contact us using our email at smblawinfo@gmail.com




If police contact has resulted in you or a family member’s arrest, you need to know your rights.  Our Dutchess County criminal lawyers have the skills, experience and judgment needed to help you. Call now for a free consultation.

The Fourth Amendment of the Constitution protects your right against unreasonable searches & seizures. The most protected place under the Fourth Amendment is your home. A police officer cannot enter your home unless he has a warrant. There are exceptions to this warrant rule, the most used exception is “consent”. “Consent” is when you open the door. So, if a police officer is knocking on your door and you did not call the police, exercise your Constitutional right and do not open the door. Call me.

The Fourth Amendment of the Constitution protects you in your home.  If the police ask you to step outside and talk that is not your home!  Unless the police have a warrant you do not have to let them in and you do not have to step outside.  If you leave the home you may be leaving the shelter of the Fourth Amendment.  You can say “no” and you can tell them “I’m calling my lawyers at Kevin M. Mackay Law.”  Know your rights and more importantly use your rights.


The law firm of Kevin  M. MacKay have built a reputation for integrity and skill in successfully representing individuals against prosecutions in Hudson Valley criminal matters. We have been successful in representing local Poughkeepsie clients at the investigative stage, discovery stage, motion practice stage, pre-trial hearing stage, and of course at trial.

Give us a call today to discuss your specific situation, or if you prefer, contact us using our email at smblawinfo@gmail.com

Why is not a good idea to start a divorce case without a lawyer?

Why it’s not a good idea to start a divorce without a lawyer

A divorce case in Hudson Valley area or in the New York State in general can be fairly simple if both the husband and the wife want to get divorced and they do not have any disagreements about their finances or children. If they have children together, the parents may already have a Family
Court order(s) that decides who has custody and/or visitation and who pays child support. If they also do not have money, property or debt to divide, they may be able to get divorced in less than a year’s time and without hiring
lawyers. People call this kind of case an “uncontested” divorce.

It’s not a good idea to try to start a divorce case without a lawyer.

This is because you must provide a lot of information to the court on many different forms and because there are many things involved in ending most marriages. New York divorce laws are put in place for both the Plaintiff and the Defendant to receive a fair divorce. Hiring a family attorney or mediator in your area is the best way to ensure that this happens.

An experienced attorney will make sure your rights are protected and make sure at the same time that you are not taken advantage of by your ex-partner and her/his attorney.

Divorce lawyers come in all shapes, sizes & colors.  When choosing the right Poughkeepsie divorce attorney for you, make sure you ask the right questions.

You can begin to put your difficult legal matters behind you by scheduling a free initial consultation at our law offices, with one of our seasoned lawyers. We can be reached online or by telephone at 845-462-0001. We welcome your call.

First-Offense DWI vs Second-Offense DWI or DWAI in New York

First-Offense DWI vs Second-Offense DWI or DWAI in New York

A first-offense DWI, sometimes called a DUI (driving under the influence), where the driver has a BAC of .08% or more (up to.18%) carries an administrative license suspension of at least six months (one year for drivers with a BAC of .18% or more or for drivers under 21 years old).

A DWI is considered a second-offense if you had a prior offense within the past ten years. DWAI’s involving drugs or a combination of drugs and alcohol also have a ten-year second-offense look-back period. However, the second-offense look-back period for DWAI’s involving only alcohol is five years.
It’s important to note that New York has multiple look-back periods. Depending on your situation, the look-back period could be four, five, ten, or 25 years. Consult with a New York DWAI attorney to find out which look-back period applies in your case.

According to the New York Department of Motor Vehicles, 33% of all fatalities are due to drunk drivers Because of this, the penalties for an alcohol or drug-related violation include the loss of driving privileges, fines, and a possible jail term.
New York has established severe penalties for DUI. The reason for the severity is not only to punish people who have been arrested for driving drunk, but to set an example to those who haven’t yet. That way, if they are ever in a position where they are considering drunk driving, they will think better of it. And the penalties become even more severe for second- and third-time offenders:

New York first-offense DWI Laws

  • $500 – $1,000 fine
  • Up to 1 year in jail
  • Minimum 6-month license suspension

New York second-offense DWI Laws(within 10 years)

  • $500 – $1,000 fine
  • Up to 4 years in jail
  • Minimum 1-year license suspension

At Kevin M. MacKay we have handled thousands of DWI cases of the course of our careers and more importantly have brought hundreds of these cases to either trial or hearing.  When looking for the right attorney experience matters come in and meet with one of our attorneys for a free consultation on your matter today.  

drink driving new york law

DUI and DWI explained for New York State

This article is made for better understanding DUI and DWI in the New York State. If you are facing those charges you can better understand them before contacting Lawyers For DWI or DUI.

A DWI refers to when a driver is intoxicated; that is, when his or her blood alcohol content level (BAC) is at the legal limit (0.08 percent) or higher. A DUI generally refers to a driver who is “buzzed” (has a BAC lower than 0.08 percent), intoxicated, or under the influence of drugs.

Alcohol reduces reaction time, reduces your ability to see clearly, changes your judgment of speed and distances, often makes you less inhibited and makes you more prone to take chances. Drugs, which include many prescription and over-the-counter medications, can affect your ability to drive. They can have effects similar to alcohol or even worse. If you take medication, even a remedy for colds or allergies that is not prescribed, check the label for warnings about its effects. If you are unsure, ask your doctor or pharmacist about driving while on the medication.

Driving while intoxicated is a crime. Your judgment, coordination and ability to drive a vehicle change when you consume any amount of alcohol. The level of impairment depends on five conditions

  • the amount of alcohol you drink
  • the amount of food you eat before or while you drink alcohol
  • the length of time you drink alcohol
  • your body weight
  • your gender

There is no quick method to become sober. The best method is to wait until your body absorbs the alcohol. The average rate that your body processes alcohol is approximately one drink per hour.

Contact Lawyers at the Law Office of Kevin M. MacKay online or call 845-432-5599. Our firm also represents students at Vassar College, The Culinary Institute of America, and Marist students who are facing DWI charges.

DUI and DWI explained

Interaction between Family Court and Criminal Court

With a practice in both Poughkeepsie criminal law and matrimonial law there is often overlap in the two areas which often revolves around allegation of domestic violence or substance abuse.  It is important to have an Dutchess County attorney who understands the interaction between both the Poughkeepsie Family court and the Criminal court.  I will limit this blog to orders of protection.

            Orders of protection:  Both the family court and the criminal court have the authority to issue what is commonly referred to as the order of protection.  This order will limit a person’s ability to be near the named person or persons, take their firearms and comes with various restrictions.   When a family member is the person requesting the order this often happens in both family court and criminal court on the same allegation.  This will often result in two orders of protection.

            Confusion arises when one court removes some of the restrictions and the other court does not.  I find client’s often may think that because the one court lifted the restrictions the other court’s restrictions will be automatically lifted.  THIS IS NOT THE CASE!!!  In order to modify the restrictions it is necessary to have both Court’s modify their orders.  One method I use to assure that this happens is to make sure in a case where the two courts are involved is to have the Criminal court with the consent of the Judge have a provision in their order which allows it to follow the family court order so that the it basically will allow the family court order of protection to be the primary order.  It is still two separate orders, but should family court allow for more contact then the criminal order will automatically do so as well.  Understanding this interaction is essential to practicing in both courts and avoiding a client’s arrest for contempt of court.

         This brief paragraph above explains just a small aspect of the interactions between Poughkeepsie family court and Dutchess County criminal court.  When you find yourself in both courts at the same time it is essential that you have a highly experienced Poughkeepsie attorney in both criminal law and family law, your freedom is at stake.

How long how much Poughkeepsie Divorce Attorney Kevin MacKay

How long & how much: Poughkeepsie Divorce Attorney Kevin MacKay

How long & how much: Poughkeepsie Divorce Attorney Kevin MacKay
Over the course of decades, there is one question that every single Dutchess County client asks. How much will this cost & how long is it going to take. Like any good divorce attorney, the answer is it depends on the case.
All humor aside, the cost and time of a Poughkeepsie divorce depends on the complexity of issues, and the willingness of attorney’s to settle unresolved issues. The least expensive divorce I have ever handled was only “$500.00” in attorney’s fees and the attorneys were done in 2 weeks. Other divorces have taken years and 10’s of thousands of dollars. I pride myself in keeping my bills as low as possible. This is done by spending time to get to know my clients, the issues most important to them, and coming up with a strategy to achieve their goals early in the case.
I also make it a point to explain the costs of obtaining each goal. I use the analogy of the golden toaster. You can hire me to argue over a toaster oven but always keep in mind that for the cost of a attorney you could not have argued and bought a golden toaster oven. This story I tell to every client not because every goal they want to obtain is not important to me, but from the experience that a client obtain all their goals and end up with nothing.
How much & how long again depends how well we balance those goals to your financial advantage.

Choosing your Poughkeepsie Divorce Attorney

Choosing your Poughkeepsie Divorce Attorney

Choosing your Poughkeepsie Divorce Attorney:

Like people in life, divorce attorney’s come in all shapes, sizes & colors.  When choosing the right Poughkeepsie divorce attorney for you, make sure you ask the right questions. As I have written in a previous blog the first & foremost question in choosing your Poughkeepsie divorce or child custody attorney is……

What is my experience? While many clients are referred to me by other clients. I am still shocked to this day that 95% of all clients never ask that question.

Of equal importance after you have spent an hour getting to know a lawyer during the initial consultation, the next intelligent question, unless this is the only lawyer in a one room office, “Are you the attorney that will handle my entire file?”

When you consult with a brain surgeon you expect the brain surgeon to perform the surgery. When you go to get a quick oil change it may not be important who changes your oil. The lawyer /client relationship should be treated like brain surgery and not like an oil change.

The Dutchess county lawyer that did the consult should be the lawyer that handles the case. Unless you made an informed decision to do otherwise.  I look forward to our consult and personally working with you through your entire case.  For more information on Dutchess County divorce lawyers please contact our office or online at Poughkeepsie Lawyers website

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