When the Proceedings Didn’t Go as Planned

Workers’ Compensation Delays Can Put You In Limbo

Posted by on 8:45 am in Uncategorized | Comments Off on Workers’ Compensation Delays Can Put You In Limbo

When the workers’ compensation insurance company unfairly delays your claim for ongoing benefits after an injury, your entire future can be put at risk and you can end up being denied care that’s medically necessary in order for you to improve. This is what you should know. A significant delay in a workers’ comp claim can interfere with your medical recovery and care. Depending on your situation, the delay could force you to choose between paying out-of-pocket for the medical care that you need in order to continue getting treatment and improvement or watching a narrow window of opportunity for those improvements slip away forever. For example, that’s the stark reality facing a Kansas man who received a traumatic brain injury (TBI) from a fall while at work as a county detention officer. The insurance company responsible for paying his claim—which includes the cost of expensive inpatient rehabilitation care and therapy designed to help him recover as much of his former-self as possible during the short time TBI victims typically have to do so—isn’t exactly refusing to pay his claim (although that’s the practical result of its inaction). Instead, it simply hasn’t accepted his claim yet. By doing that, however, the insurance has effectively prevented him from getting care that isn’t covered under his regular insurance and keeps him from having any income coming in. A delay in processing could also put your job at risk. The delay also puts him in a legal and medical limbo. His injury happened on the job so he should be covered by worker’s comp benefits and his job should be secure while he tries to recover. Since the claim hasn’t been accepted by the insurer yet, the detention officer has simply been on unpaid leave while he recovers, first at the hospital and now in rehab. That means that his employer, the Harvey county government, is now obligated to fire him because he’s exceeded the maximum 30 days of leave without pay that’s allowed. His regular insurance will also end when his job ends. The money raised to cover his additional care isn’t enough to continue paying for all of his treatment. A delay can also affect your ability to legally protect yourself. If his workers’ comp claim were formally denied, he’d have appeal rights and some measure of protection against losing his job. If they were formally denied, he would probably also have sought earlier legal representation instead of waiting until just days before the private funding for his care was about to run out. Cases like this serve as a grim reminder that sometimes things in the workers’ compensation system don’t work out the way that they should—the system breaks down and leaves the injury victim stuck in the center. While many people wait until their claim is actually denied to seek an attorney’s assistance, there are times when aggressive legal representation is needed much earlier. If you suspect this is true in your case, talk to a workers’ compensation attorney near you right away. If you are in a similar case and need workers’ compensation, talk with a workers compensation attorney or visit websites...

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Cooperating With Visitation Orders

Posted by on 8:32 am in Uncategorized | Comments Off on Cooperating With Visitation Orders

If you are the divorcing parent of a minor child, the issue of child custody and visitation will very likely be among some of the most contentious issues you encounter. Once custody is awarded, there is a good chance that a visitation schedule will follow. Although the name is a little misleading, joint custody means that one parent is the sole physical custodian of the minor child and the other parent is assigned visitation with that child. To help you better understand the issue of child visitation, read on. Court Ordered Unless you and your spouse have agreed upon shared custody, which means a 50/50 split in parenting duties, you will have court-ordered visitation. This order is not meant to be a suggestion only; it must be followed, regardless. Do yourself and your children a big favor and ensure that it is a plan that you can follow, since making changes involves going back to court. Because the best interest of the child is so important to the family court system, failing to abide by the visitation schedule can create the potential to be in contempt of court or to even lose custody of the child, so compliance is vital. Minor Issues While it is always possible to go back to court to make changes, the judge expects parents to deal with minor issue on their own, without wasting the court’s time and costing you both money. A few minor, but common, problems follow: 1. You hate your ex-spouse’s new love interest. Unless you can prove that your child would be harmed in some way from being in contact with this person, you must learn to deal with the their presence in your child’s life. Your ex has moved on, and while you should certainly take an interest in the new partner’s background, drug use, criminal past, etc, you cannot deny visitation based on your personal feelings about them. 2. Your ex-spouse keeps bringing the children home late, fails to show up on time for ordered visitation, has to cancel at the last minute, allows the children to eat “bad” foods, etc. These are all undoubtedly annoying but still fall into the range of minor issues. Remember, only reasons that impact the best interest of the child should be brought before the court. That Sticky Child Support Issue You may be legitimately enraged at your ex for failing to pay child support as ordered, but you cannot deny them their due visitation because of it. Child support and child custody/visitation are two separate issues and must be addressed separately. You should allow visitation, but contact the child support enforcement agency and allow them to take actions against your ex. To help ensure a peaceful and uneventful visitation experience, discuss this issue with your divorce attorney. If you’re still looking for an attorney, check out a site like...

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About Getting the Minimal DUI Sentence

Posted by on 8:39 am in Uncategorized | Comments Off on About Getting the Minimal DUI Sentence

Are you out of jail on bail after getting busted by law enforcement for driving with a high level of alcohol in your body? If you know that there is a high chance that you will have to spend time in jail for your crime, you will need to hire a lawyer if you want the minimal sentence. A DUI offense can land you in jail for a long time when it isn’t the first one you have on your criminal record. Below, there is helpful information that will give you a better understanding why it is wise to hire a lawyer for your DUI case. Analyze Your Overall Criminal Background The first service provided by a DUI defense attorney will be an analysis of your criminal records. He or she will specifically look for how many DUI offenses you have committed in the past and the severity of the offenses. However, your overall criminal history will play a role in how you are sentenced for your crime. Keep in mind that the lawyer will likely ask you questions about your offenses as well, so be prepared to be completely honest if you want a strong case. Determine How to Improve Your Character The best way to strengthen your case is to improve your character. A lawyer might recommend that you take part in various community-service activities to show that you are not a bad person. If you are an actual alcoholic, going to rehab might be suggested to prove that you want to change your bad habits. Speaking to some of the people that you know about your character is another service that the lawyer will likely perform. Come Up with a Fair Plea Bargain Sometimes the best way to get the minimal sentence when guilty of a crime is via a plea bargain. A lawyer will help you plea to the judge in a way in that it is likely to be accepted. For instance, he or she might recommend that you plead guilty, especially when there is a substantial amount of evidence against you. In return to admitting that you committed a DUI offense, the lawyer will ask the judge if you can serve the most minimal sentence possible, which might include a little jail time. Get in touch with a reputable lawyer and discuss your DUI offense to determine how he or she can help you through...

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Looking For Seasonal Work For The First Time? Four Important Things You Need To Know About Workers’ Comp

Posted by on 10:11 am in Uncategorized | Comments Off on Looking For Seasonal Work For The First Time? Four Important Things You Need To Know About Workers’ Comp

Signs for seasonal help are already going up in the windows and doors of local businesses everywhere as stores get ready for the rush between Halloween and Christmas. If you’re looking for seasonal work for the first time this year, there are a few things you should know in order to protect yourself in case you are injured while on the job. 1.) Seasonal and temporary employees are still covered under workers’ compensation rules. Whether you are hired as a “seasonal” employee or a “temporary” employee, you are still entitled to coverage under workers’ compensation if you get injured. It also doesn’t matter if you are working full-time or part-time. Should you get injured—even if it’s your very first day on the job—don’t let anyone dissuade you from filing a claim for benefits. 2.) Don’t allow an employer to misclassify you as an independent contractor. Since you’ve never done seasonal work before, you might be easily misled into believing that you’re actually an independent contractor, especially if you go to work for a small business as a sign-spinner or store Santa Claus in order to attract business. There are some financial advantages for a business to classify you as an independent contractor, mostly because they don’t have to make any tax payments on your behalf, including FICA and unemployment tax. Independent contractors are also not covered under workers’ compensation benefits. While there are numerous factors that can be used to create the distinction between an employee and an independent contractor, most seasonal workers will be employees.  3.) Don’t allow an employer to tell you that you can’t get benefits because the accident was your fault. The issue of “fault” over an accident, also known as negligence, is something that confuses even long-time employees. If you’re relatively new to the workforce, like many seasonal workers, you may not realize that it doesn’t matter who is responsible for an accident—you, your employer, another employee, or just plain bad luck.  Workers’ comp was designed as a “no-fault” system, precisely in order to keep claims out of court. Because it is a no-fault system, however, it is generally your exclusive remedy if you get injured. (There are some exceptions to that rule if the employer’s actions were particularly neglectful toward employee safety and third-party claims against manufacturers of defective equipment used on the job are sometimes possible.) 4.) Waiting to file a claim can hurt your ability to collect benefits. If you are injured on the job, make sure that you report the injury to your employer as soon as possible, in writing. Your employer should give you a claim form immediately, but he or she isn’t under any obligation to pay your claim until you file the form. Delaying your claim can give your employer reason to question why you waited to turn in your claim and maybe even question if you were really injured, especially if there were no witnesses. If your employer seems reluctant to file your workers’ comp claim or tells you that you aren’t entitled to benefits for some reason, consult with a workers’ compensation attorney like Paul F Guthrie as soon as...

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Hiring A Family Law Attorney To Resolve Your Child Support Issue

Posted by on 10:01 am in Uncategorized | Comments Off on Hiring A Family Law Attorney To Resolve Your Child Support Issue

Children living in single parent households are able to thrive and grow up to lead happy, balanced lives, if a solid support system is established during childhood. Child support is a tool that single parents can use to offset some of the financial responsibilities that come as result of raising children. Although individual states in the U.S. have their own unique methods for establishing and enforcing child support orders, meeting with a family law attorney can help immensely with your case. Filing For Child Support Or Modifying An Existing Order There are many rules surrounding how, when, and where custodial parents are able to file for child support, which is why consulting with a family law attorney is urged. Custody, residency, proof of income, and expenses will need to be established if you seek child support from the non-custodial party. Child support orders can also be modified in specific circumstances. If either you or the non-custodial parent have experienced recent changes in income, a child support modification may be in order. Existing child support orders can also be modified if there has been a change in custody or visitation with the other parent. Documenting Admissible Child Support Related Expenses While providing a stable environment for your children can be expensive, not all costs are related to child support. Your family law attorney can help you to differentiate between expenses that will be recognized by the courts as legitimate child care expenditures, versus those that are miscellaneous. Be aware of what child care costs you can expect to be reimbursed for, such as tutoring and school uniforms, before making major financial decisions related to your child. Enforcing A Child Support Order And Filing For Arrears Family law attorneys can inform their clients of all available avenues for enforcing child support orders, including those that have fallen into arrears. Wage garnishments and tax seizures can help parents who are owed child support to attain financial relief, but not all cases are quite so simple. Collecting child support from non-custodial parents who own businesses or are employed in a different jurisdiction are notoriously difficult to collect from. There are some child support cases that are still ongoing, even after the children in question have reached the age of maturity. As a result, lawyers working with custodial parents to collect child support must be patient, empathetic, and judicious in order to make progress. Learn how a local family law attorney, such as those found at Baudler, Maus, Forman, Kritzer & Wagner, LLP, can help with your child support matter and help you to create a positive...

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Do You Really Need To Hire An Injury Attorney?

Posted by on 4:48 am in Uncategorized | Comments Off on Do You Really Need To Hire An Injury Attorney?

Turn on the TV on any day and you’ll see ad after ad asking if you need a personal injury lawyer to represent you. These ads create the impression that anyone who has been hurt needs counsel and will get big money. Attorneys, however, take a sizeable chunk of most injury cases. The accepted industry norm is for a law firm to assess a fee of around 33% of the final settlement or verdict. That means you need to get a lot of bang for your buck in order to justify hiring a personal injury attorney, so it’s good to know when you may really need to retain counsel. Complex Cases The most obvious instance when you may need to hire a lawyer is when you have a case that’s legally complex. If you’re in a situation where a number of parties may be responsible for your injuries, it can be beneficial to have an attorney represent you. For example, cases involving fleet operators or store chains can lead to many individuals being held liable. A lawyer can advise you regarding who to pursue damages against and how to approach your case. A Small Case In some instances, a case is too simple and small to justify hiring a lawyer. Many practices won’t approach a case unless it passes a certain threshold in size, and others will expect a larger fee. If you’re anticipating receiving $7,000 for a claim, it’s hard to picture parting with half of that amount in order to have counsel. If the other party’s insurance company is comfortable settling a smaller claim, you may want to forgo bringing in counsel. A Sizable Expected Settlement or Judgment If you’re expecting to receive a large amount of compensation, an attorney can help you in a couple ways. First, a lawyer can fight to ensure that you get the maximum amount possible. Second, an attorney can help you structure the settlement in fashion that ensures your needs are taken care of well into the future. Trial As a rule of thumb, 95% of injury claims are expected to be settled without ever going to trial. Unfortunately, your claim may fall in the remaining 5% of cases that do go to court. If you’re facing a responsible party that either refuses to pay or expects to pay dramatically less than you’re seeking, it’ll likely be wise to ask a personal injury attorney like Dunnigan & Messier P.C. to be present as you go through the process of litigating the...

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3 Little-Known Steps In Filing For Bankruptcy

Posted by on 11:03 am in Uncategorized | Comments Off on 3 Little-Known Steps In Filing For Bankruptcy

If you are considering filing for bankruptcy, you must be aware that there is more to it than just filing and receiving court approval. There are many other steps that can make filing for bankruptcy overwhelming, which is why you should hire a bankruptcy attorney to help you with the process. Here are three little-known steps in filing for bankruptcy: You Need Bankruptcy Credit Counseling:  Before you even file for bankruptcy, you must go through bankruptcy credit counseling. This is required by law and must be done by an approved credit counseling agency in order for you to move forward with the process. The reason for this is that, during this time in counseling, you may discover that filing bankruptcy is not your best option. However, if you do, they will guide you into what chapter of bankruptcy you must file under. Keep in mind that if you don’t have time to complete credit counseling in person, you can always sign up for online counseling. Just be sure that it’s through an approved agency, which your bankruptcy attorney can help you to find.  You Have to Pay Certain Fees:  To file for bankruptcy and to go through credit counseling, you will have to pay certain fees. These fees can be waived if you meet certain income requirements. Your bankruptcy attorney can help you file the correct paperwork to have these fees waived if you are eligible to do so. Your attorney will also ensure that you do this before the deadline. If you wait too long, paperwork cannot be processed and you won’t receive compensation. You Need to Take a Debtor Education Course: Once you have finished with the process of filing for bankruptcy, you are going to need to go through a debtor education course. Once this is done, the process can be finalized. This is important because it gives you the information that you need to know about how to handle life after bankruptcy and how to avoid filing for bankruptcy again in the future. Be sure to complete this course before the deadline to ensure that your bankruptcy case can be finalized. Otherwise, the case can possibly be dropped and you will need to start over. When you know these little known steps in filing for bankruptcy, you can be better prepared for the process. It might take a bit longer than you thought, but with an attorney from a company like Wiesner & Frackowiak, LC by your side, you can be sure that everything is done before the deadlines so you don’t run into complications in the...

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Exercises To Prepare For Your Criminal Defense Testimony

Posted by on 10:59 am in Uncategorized | Comments Off on Exercises To Prepare For Your Criminal Defense Testimony

Testifying in your own criminal defense case is a risky strategic move that can pay off in many cases. If you are able to let the jury see a side of you that doesn’t come out in other witnesses’ testimonies, then it can humanize your case and also give the jury new, positive information to work with. But before you step onto the witness stand, you must do some work to polish your testimony. Here are some exercises to help you prepare.  Write Out All the Details You and your criminal defense lawyer can sit down and write a thorough list of your case’s details. Write down everything that comes to mind naturally. Then tell the story of what happened to your lawyer, and write down any new details that come up. Have your lawyer ask you questions about parts of the story they want to know more about, and again, write down new details that emerge. When you think you have everything written out, highlight the parts that are most important in one color. Highlight the details that you didn’t mention spontaneously in another color. It’s helpful to have this visual representation to draw from when you’re practicing giving your testimony, especially since it shows where the natural gaps in your story are.  Work on the Gaps If there are any questions that you couldn’t answer from your lawyer’s questioning, then you will need to work on an honest answer that still puts you in a positive light. For instance, your lawyer may ask you specific details surrounding part of the story that seems unbelievable. You may need to work on developing the rationale for things you did that seem unnatural or unreasonable. You may also have acted in a morally ambiguous way, so work on coming up with reasonable explanations for your actions that the jury can identify with. If you are well prepared to deal with these sorts of questions, you won’t be put on the spot as much when they are asked to you by the prosecutor.  Get Comfortable Telling Your Story It’s entirely possible that you know what happened and you know that you’re innocent, but your testimony puts your case in a worse position because you aren’t ready to give your testimony. Being in front of so many people who are evaluating your innocence can be very stressful. Practice delivering the testimony to different people before you get in front of the...

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How Wage Garnishments Are Handled In Bankruptcy

Posted by on 12:49 pm in Uncategorized | Comments Off on How Wage Garnishments Are Handled In Bankruptcy

One of the worst things that can happen to your paychecks is something called wage garnishment. Unfortunately, though, this is a tool that creditors can use if you owe money and will not willingly pay it. A wage garnishment will typically continue until the debt is paid in full, but there is one way you could put a stop to it early. Filing for bankruptcy is the tool you can use to stop a wage garnishment, and here are a couple things to know about this. Filing instantly puts a freeze on wage garnishment No matter what the wage garnishment is for, filing for bankruptcy will instantly force the garnishment to stop. This is called an automatic stay, and this feature of bankruptcy stops all creditors from coming after debts a person owes. An automatic stay not only forces garnishments to stop, but it also prohibits creditors from contacting the person in any way. The type of debt determines if the wage garnishment will continue The benefit this offers is that you will get a break from paying your debt once the court issues the automatic stay. The other benefit is that you may never have to repay the debt you owed. The downside is that the court will factor in two things when determining if you have to repay the debt that was being paid through a wage garnishment. The first factor is the branch of bankruptcy you file, and the second factor is whether the debt is considered a priority debt or a nonpriority debt. If the debt is classified as a priority debt, you will have to pay it in full in most cases, and it doesn’t matter which branch of bankruptcy you filed. If this is the case, the creditor could petition to the court to reinstate the wage garnishment. If the court agrees, your wages will soon be garnished once again. If the debt is a nonpriority debt and you filed Chapter 7, there is a good chance the debt will be discharged through the bankruptcy proceedings. If this is the situation, that particular wage garnishment will never happen again. Stopping a wage garnishment might only be possible by filing for bankruptcy; however, bankruptcy is a big event in life and there are a lot of factors you should consider before you rush into it. To find out if bankruptcy is right for you, schedule a consultation appointment with a family law attorney like one from Nelson, McPherson Summers & Santos...

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Faqs About A Disability Insurance Claim Denial

Posted by on 2:58 am in Uncategorized | Comments Off on Faqs About A Disability Insurance Claim Denial

A denial of your disability insurance claim does not necessarily mean the end of the road. You can file an appeal to request a review of the decision. Before filing an appeal, here is what you need to know.  Why Was Your Claim Denied? A claim denial can occur for several reasons. For instance, some claims are denied because there is a lack of medical evidence. Lack of medical evidence could mean that the insurance company did not receive enough medical records from your medical care providers to make a decision.  It could also mean that you did not receive regular medical treatment that is consistent with your disability claims. For instance, if you were supposed to attend physical therapy but did not, the insurance company could argue that your injuries were not serious enough for you to follow the doctor’s orders. As a result, you are not entitled to receive benefits.  Denials can also result from simple mistakes, such as failing to follow the deadlines set by the insurance provider. Whatever the reasoning, the insurance company has to include it in the denial letter that you receive. You can use the reasoning to help shape your appeal.  How Can You Appeal? If you are planning to appeal, make date on the denial notice. You must file your appeal within a certain number of days following the date on the denial notice. If not, you could possibly forfeit your right to appeal and will have to start the process over again. The number of days can vary based on the type of disability insurance you have. How long you have is included on the notice.  If the insurance company denied your claim based on a lack of evidence, you need to work on building up the amount of evidence you have. For instance, you can ask your doctor to write a statement that details your impairment and states that you are physically unable to work. You can also see a specialist if you have a condition that requires more specialized care. For instance, if you have a heart condition, a cardiologist’s report could help build your case.  If you made a mistake, such as missing the deadline, you need to contact the insurance provider and find out whether or not you can continue with the claim. If so, the provider can explain what you need to do to correct your mistake. If not, you might have to start the process again.  Appealing a denial from and insurance company can be challenging, so working with an experienced attorney could be the best decision....

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