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Is it taboo to ask hypothetical questions on forums like this ?

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#1
What is the name of your state (only U.S. law)? Pennsylvania/West Virginia


I just realized that my previous two questions may have been better asked from an attorney or on a more generalist forum . But for the sake of future reference , is it a breach of online legal forum ethics to ask questions about hypothetical scenarios pertaining to issues covered by this sub forum ?
 


Just Blue

Senior Member
#2
What is the name of your state (only U.S. law)? Pennsylvania/West Virginia


I just realized that my previous two questions may have been better asked from an attorney or on a more generalist forum . But for the sake of future reference , is it a breach of online legal forum ethics to ask questions about hypothetical scenarios pertaining to issues covered by this sub forum ?
Yes. In general this site does not like hypothetical questions.
 

quincy

Senior Member
#3
What is the name of your state (only U.S. law)? Pennsylvania/West Virginia


I just realized that my previous two questions may have been better asked from an attorney or on a more generalist forum . But for the sake of future reference , is it a breach of online legal forum ethics to ask questions about hypothetical scenarios pertaining to issues covered by this sub forum ?
This forum is designed to help people with their current real-life legal issues.

Hypothetical questions, homework questions, and questions by writers about the stories they are writing are rarely entertained by forum members. There are other websites on the internet where questions of that sort can be addressed and discussed.
 

Just Blue

Senior Member
#4
This forum is designed to help people with their current real-life legal issues.

Hypothetical questions, homework questions, and questions by writers about the stories they are writing are rarely entertained by forum members. There are other websites on the internet where questions of that sort can be addressed and discussed.
It's kinda been made more than clear to OP this is how THIS site works. IMO.
 
#7
This forum is designed to help people with their current real-life legal issues.

Hypothetical questions, homework questions, and questions by writers about the stories they are writing are rarely entertained by forum members. There are other websites on the internet where questions of that sort can be addressed and discussed.
With that said, I personally have no particular problem with hypothetical questions so long as the author of the post makes it clear that the post is hypothetical at the start. Then people can decide whether to reply or not. But I don't make the board rules, so it’s not up to me what gets posted here. :)
 

Just Blue

Senior Member
#8
With that said, I personally have no particular problem with hypothetical questions so long as the author of the post makes it clear that the post is hypothetical at the start. Then people can decide whether to reply or not. But I don't make the board rules, so it’s not up to me what gets posted here. :)
Years ago there was a series of questions that were absurd as a result most of us determined that hypothetical questions were a WOT. It's not a "rule".
 

quincy

Senior Member
#9
With that said, I personally have no particular problem with hypothetical questions so long as the author of the post makes it clear that the post is hypothetical at the start. Then people can decide whether to reply or not. But I don't make the board rules, so it’s not up to me what gets posted here. :)
Hypothetical questions generally do not bother me all that much. The answers to even hypothetical questions can be educational. And if people want to help writers with their novels, I personally see no harm in that. But I won't answer obvious homework questions because teachers are testing their students' knowledge not our knowledge.

Many of the rules on this forum are unwritten rules, though. I don't know who decided these rules should govern members or posters, or why adherence to these unwritten rules is so important to some.

That said, questions about laws in other countries should not be answered because this forum is specifically for US law questions only. That's a written rule. Legal terminology and interpretations of laws differ significantly from country to country. Providing incorrect information to foreign visitors benefits no one.

But I certainly don't fault visitors for coming to this forum seeking answers to their legal questions, whatever the question. We can politely and competently provide an appropriate answer or we can politely decline to answer.
 
#10
Hypothetical questions don't bother me in general. The problems with them in general is there isn't even close to a complete fact set associated with them.
 

quincy

Senior Member
#11
Hypothetical questions don't bother me in general. The problems with them in general is there isn't even close to a complete fact set associated with them.
Right. Without set facts, hypothetical questions can veer off into too many different directions and can become the absurdities that Bambi spoke of. It really depends on the question, the poster who is asking it, and how well those answering the question can keep the answers on a sane path.

But this forum is really not a discussion forum. Hypothetical questions can find a better home on other websites.
 

cbg

I'm a Northern Girl
#12
I object to hypothetical questions, for the reason stated above. If the circumstances are such that the poster has a very specific set of facts that is likely to occur, I may make a stab at it but only with the qualification that should the facts change, so does the answer. I have no objection, for reasons that should be obvious to anyone who knows me, to helping writers with their stories. I will not knowingly answer homework questions under any circumstances - I will not even tell someone seeking help with their homework where to look. If they can't find that much on their own, they deserve whatever flunking grade they get.
 

LdiJ

Senior Member
#13
I object to hypothetical questions, for the reason stated above. If the circumstances are such that the poster has a very specific set of facts that is likely to occur, I may make a stab at it but only with the qualification that should the facts change, so does the answer. I have no objection, for reasons that should be obvious to anyone who knows me, to helping writers with their stories. I will not knowingly answer homework questions under any circumstances - I will not even tell someone seeking help with their homework where to look. If they can't find that much on their own, they deserve whatever flunking grade they get.
I agree with you, but sometimes I might give someone a nudge in the right direction. If someone doesn't know the subject enough to use the right keywords, research can be difficult.
 

cbg

I'm a Northern Girl
#14
That's what they're in school to learn. No one else in the class is getting a message board to tell them where to look - they're figuring it out for themselves. Which is what's supposed to happen. How are they going to learn if we spoon feed them the answers?
 

Zigner

Senior Member, Non-Attorney
#15
I don't like hypotheticals because the "facts" always seem to morph with every response as the OP tries to get the answer he/she wants to hear.
 
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