How Long Is a United States Passport Valid?

United States Passport pic
United States Passport

Cynthia Ann Miller has served as an attorney at her eponymous law firm in Hinsdale, IL, since 1991. From additional locations in Downers Grove and Naperville, she litigates a number of real estate matters including foreclosures, easement enforcement, and boundary disputes. Outside of her professional life, Cynthia Miller enjoys traveling outside of Hinsdale, IL, to international destinations across Europe, the Middle East, and South America.

Before visiting any international destinations, it’s crucial to check your passport to ensure it is still valid. While you cannot travel internationally on an expired passport, some countries and airlines will not let you in if your passport is even close to expiring.

For anyone over the age of 16, a standard passport is valid for 10 years. If you are 16 or younger, however, your passport is only good for five years. Your passport itself will show you both the date it was issued and the date it expires.

Renewing your passport before it expires may save you some trouble come time for your trip. Some countries and airlines will not even let you in the country or on the plane if your passport is set to expire within six months of your trip’s end. For example, if your passport has seven months left but you are going on a two-month trip, you would be denied since your passport will only be good for five months by the time you leave the country.


Settling Fence Maintenance Disputes in Illinois

Cynthia Miller, Hinsdale, IL
Cynthia Miller, Hinsdale, IL

Cynthia Ann Miller is a respected Hinsdale, IL, attorney who represents clients in complex real estate matters. In her work as attorney, Cynthia Ann Miller strives to ensure that Hinsdale, IL, clients minimize their costs in contentious disputes that can require an extended period of time. She has extensive knowledge of fence and property line laws, which helps resolve issues related to boundaries and trespassing on private land.

One aspect of a common fence in Illinois is that both property owners are responsible for its maintenance. In cases where a fence is in need of repair, the two adjacent property owners share costs 50-50. In cases of one party not initially cooperating, the other starts by writing a letter explaining the issue with the fence. A “fence viewer” can then be brought in to undertake a fence examination. This helps determine whether the fence is in need of repair and whether the share of the total cost requested is reasonable.

Past this stage, the two parties may enter into mediation to resolve issues. Alternatively, a lawsuit may be filed, such that the neighbor is compelled to pay his or her part of the total cost.

ABA Issues New Ethics Guidance on Blogging, Social Commentary


 American Bar Association pic
American Bar Association

With more than two decades of experience in the legal field, attorney Cynthia Ann Miller specializes in real estate law in her Hinsdale, IL, practice. Outside of her work in her Hinsdale, IL, office, Cynthia Miller engages with her peers and stays up to date on new legal trends through membership in the American Bar Association (ABA). The ABA routinely offers guidance on issues of ethics and other matters.

Attorneys who keep a blog or appear regularly on news programs to offer analysis may be tempted to draw upon their own case experience when talking about certain legal issues, but according to new ABA guidance, doing so may run afoul of ethical concerns as related to confidentiality. The ABA Standing Committee on Ethics and Professional Responsibility recently issued a new opinion about appropriate content for blogs and other avenues of social commentary.

The opinion specifically covers the use of hypothetical scenarios in these types of commentaries. Many times attorneys pull certain details from their own cases when constructing these scenarios, but sometimes those details are enough to determine a client’s identity. If the client has not given express permission to talk about their case, this would be a violation of ethics rules.

Things to Consider If You’re Planning a Trip to the Middle East


Middle East pic
Middle East

For more than two decades, Cynthia Ann Miller has served as an attorney in private practice in Hinsdale, IL. When she’s not helping clients navigate real estate matters, Cynthia Miller enjoys traveling outside of Hinsdale, IL. Over the years, she has traveled to areas such as the Middle East.

If you’re visiting the Middle East, here are a few things you should keep in mind:

Dress code: Show respect for the local culture. In much of the Middle East, tourists should dress conservatively. Sleeveless tops, low-riding jeans, and shorts are frowned upon by many locals. In some areas, women may also need to wear headscarves.

Photos: Tourists in the Middle East are welcome to take photographs of most monuments, works of art, and mosques. But many governments in the area are not comfortable with tourists photographing military facilities. To avoid trouble, don’t take pictures of buildings with an unclear use.

The language: Not knowing the Arabic language impacts moving around in the Middle East. Becoming familiar with the language is a good idea. Alternatively, tourists can hire locals who speak English to serve as tour guides.

An Overview of Quiet Title Actions


Cynthia Miller, Hinsdale, IL
Cynthia Miller, Hinsdale, IL

Cynthia Ann Miller is an attorney and the owner of her own law firm in Hinsdale, IL. Focusing on real estate litigation, Cynthia Miller of Hinsdale, IL, has handled a variety of matters, including foreclosures, easement enforcement, and quiet title actions.

A quiet title action clarifies who owns a property and is often used when two or more people claim ownership of a property or when the chain of title has gaps. Quiet title actions are also used when one party claims priority in competing encumbrances or liens. This action clears titles of any claims of ownership and allows the property to be sold without the risk of disputes.

In some cases, an owner may want to resolve, or quiet, old title issues. These issues may include recording errors or title disputes.

When any document is recorded against a property, the property is denoted by its legal description and permanent index number (PIN). Since these PINs are unique, documents filed against a property can stay on record for several years unless the property owner quiets them through a quiet title action.

Property owners can file quiet title actions regardless of whether there is an active dispute. When there is an active dispute, all named parties must demonstrate the strength of their claims before a court. The court then decides who has the strongest claim and grants ownership to that party. In the event there is no active dispute, the action encompasses all past and present parties who can claim ownership.

ABA Rolls Out New Domestic and Sexual Violence Podcast


Basting Techniques When Roasting Meat


Roasting Meat pic
Roasting Meat

Based in Hinsdale, IL, Cynthia Ann Miller is an attorney who guides a well-established real estate firm that handles a wide range of property types. Focused on Hinsdale, IL-area homeowners’ association disputes, Cynthia Miller enjoys cooking in her free time and has attended culinary school.

One foundational technique in roasting poultry and other types of meat is basting, which involves applying pan drippings or stock to the surface of what is being roasted. This can be accomplished either through a basting bulb, which efficiently sucks liquid from the bottom of the roasting pan, or a basting brush, which is more efficient at distributing the liquid over the entire surface of the meat.

The result of proper basting is a piece of meat that comes out of the oven moist and flavorful. Unfortunately, there is a trade-off: opening the oven door releases heat, and the more this is done, the slower the cooking process, which changes the texture of the meat in subtle ways.