What Do Family Law Attorneys Do?

Family law is the sector of law that handles all family and domestic matters. Family lawyers are responsible for advising clients on a broad variety of personal matters. The topics covered are often sensitive in nature for everyone involved. This type of lawyer will often assist husbands and wives, offspring, grandparents, legal guardians, and others. In most cases, family law attorneys assist in legal scenarios that arise between family members and spouses. Many of these situations are related to marriage, dissolution of marriage and children.

Separation and Divorce Procedures

Divorces are one of the most common legal processes handled by family lawyers. A divorce can have many long term legal, financial and person consequences. Each state has unique legal requirements that cover the different aspects of divorce. For example, some states require individuals to be legally separated before getting a divorce. Other states have no-fault divorce laws. All of this can be rather confusing for individuals, so they seek assistance from a family lawyer. Lawyers work on behalf of their clients to work out the details of divorce. Some details may include marital assets or alimony. If these matters cannot be settled outside of a courtroom, a family lawyer will represent a client during court proceedings.

Child Custody and Child Support

Child custody and child support arrangements are also handled by family law attorneys. It can be emotionally difficult for separated parents to work out agreements regarding their children. A family lawyer helps clients learn about the different types of custody and child support options. Joint custody and sole custody are the primary custody options. Clients are given information about the pros and cons of each type of custody agreement. This allows them to decide what type of custody to pursue. If a child custody case goes to court, a family lawyer represents a client in order to show that the client has the best interests of his or her child in mind. Lawyers will use different factors like parental stability and home environments to help build cases for their clients.

Additional Services of Family Law Attorneys

While divorce and child custody matters are the most common matters, there are many other sectors of family law. Family lawyers also help clients with a broad variety of other legal matters. Some of these legal matters include:

  • prenuptial agreements

  • paternity testing

  • adoption services

  • juvenile delinquency

In some cases, a lawyer will simply file paperwork on behalf of a client. In other situations, family law attorneys work to aggressively defend their clients in court. The assistance provided by a family lawyer like Nelson, McPherson Summers & Santos LC will vary depending on the needs of his or her clients.

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Worker’s Compensation & Some Exciting Upcoming Trends

You can’t predict if you will ever sustain an injury at your workplace serious enough to make it necessary to apply for workers’ comp insurance. While an attorney can assist you with initiating your claim, as well as getting approved, what information about the program as a whole? Here is an overview of some exciting current and upcoming workers’ comp trends:  

An evolving healthcare model

Just about every government financial program is constantly introducing new and improved ways of completing applications, checking the status of an existing application, and simply making the program more consumer-friendly. Workers’ comp has also introduced some helpful changes, as well.

One of the more notable changes is their improved focus on healthcare. Some of the larger employers are contracting directly with the top healthcare organizations. By doing so, this ensures that claimants are able to receive the best healthcare possible. Access to mental health services is also being improved, as it is recognized that mental health is an important component of overall health. 

Easier approval process

When it comes to being approved for workers’ comp, it all depends on your attorney’s ability to prove that you were, without a doubt, injured at work through no fault of your own. In the past, the approval process was more challenging. However, thanks to improved risk management techniques being utilized by many employers, approving claims is being streamlined. This will make it easier for companies to identify employees that are considered to be “high risk,” and it will also make it easier for those who are truly qualified for benefits to be recognized.

Advancements to improve finances

The workers’ comp program is always working to take advantage of innovative new practices that will result in the development of improvements. Thanks to technological advancements in data analytics, higher pricing and improved underwriting, the financial status of the workers’ comp program as a whole has improved. These improvements have also enabled claims to be processed more efficiently than in the past. This could result in receipt of benefits faster, should you ever need to file a claim. 

In the unfortunate event that you are ever the victim of a serious work-related injury and are in need of workers’ comp, then these upcoming trends should help you to feel more positive and hopeful regarding the entire process. Of course retaining the services of an experienced attorney would also be important. The right lawyer can assist you every step of the way, increasing your chances of being awarded much-needed benefits during a very stressful time. 

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Bail Bonds And How To Prepare For The Unthinkable

Few people expect to be arrested and sent to jail. However, it happens to millions of Americans every single year. In fact, there is a 5% chance that you will go to prison at one point in your lifetime! Thankfully, there is a system in place to allow individuals to leave jail in order to be with their families and work: bail bonds:

“What is a bail bond?”

When you get arrested and taken to jail, the police are legally obligated to charge you with a crime very shortly after your arrival. You will then be brought before the judge, where there will be a bail hearing. Based on the severity of the alleged crime, the judge will probably set bail, which is essentially a security deposit that you can make in order to ensure your temporary freedom.

“So I can avoid jail just by paying money? What’s the catch?”

Unfortunately, bail is generally set a lot higher than most people can afford to pay out of pocket. This is where bail bondsmen come, which are business that operate somewhat similarly to banks. They will loan you the money to cover your bail on the assumption that you pay it back later, with interest.

“What’s to prevent me from just running after I get out of jail on bail?”

Well, if you cover the bail with your own money, then you will lose all that money. Additionally, you will be pursued by the law and will be subject to additional charges on your inevitable capture.

If you hire a bail bondsmen to cover your fee, the the bail bond company will track you down. Although this situation isn’t as dramatic as portrayals such as “Dog the Bounty Hunter” make it out to be, at the very least you will have to worry about a warrant for your arrest that will last until you die.

“So what do I need to do?”

The best thing that you can do is to get in touch with a bail bondsmen and to discuss their rates. These consultations are free and will help you get a good idea of just how much you will be paying. Furthermore, it is a good idea to have the contact information of a bail bondsman, just in case.

Finally, the exact amount of the bail can vary from state to state, so you’ll need to research the laws in your state. For instance, if you live in Oregon, then commercial bail bondsmen are not going to be an option for you. To learn more, contact a company like A Bail Now Bail Bonds, Inc.

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3 Tips For Diffusing or Avoiding A Lawsuit

Getting involved in a personal injury lawsuit can be a major headache. Many people worry that they are going to be sued, and wonder what they can do to protect themselves. Although you cannot account for every situation, there are some things that you can do to protect yourself from being sued. Here are a couple ideas.

1. Be Kind and Diffuse The Situation

It is amazing how many lawsuits are filed because people simply are mad at each other. A neighbor might become angry at their neighbor because they had a fight over a property line. The two could have settled it on their own, but because one or both parties chose to be unreasonable, the fight ends up in the courtroom. Although it might be hard to swallow your pride and try to resolve it on your own, it can save you lots of money and preserve the relationship. 

It is important to mention that although you should be kind and try to resolve it on your own, you should never admit fault. By admitting that you did something wrong, you give a litigious person a free pass for suing you. You can say that you are sorry for their situation, but you shouldn’t ever say outright that you caused the problem.

2.  Get Verbal and Written Agreement

Before you enter into any kind of agreement with your neighbor, friend, or acquaintance you should get a verbal or written statement that you both agree to. This doesn’t have to be formal. It could be an email or text message stating that both of you were aware of the risks and that you agreed to it.

In addition, you should make sure that if you are hosting children at your house for an activity, such as a swimming, or birthday party you should make sure that you get written release forms. This will prevent the child’s parents from suing you in the case that their child is injured on your property.

3. Post Signs

When having people over to your house to swim, jump on a trampoline, or play high-risk games, you should have signs stating that they play at their own risk. Even a simple sign that says “swim at your own risk” can save you in the case that you are sued. This proves that you did not assume responsibility for those visiting your home.

By doing these simple things you can protect yourself from lawsuits that could drain you of all your financial resources. For more information, contact a lawyer like those at Parker & Frey.

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Don’t Give Up After The VA Denies Your Claim

Many veterans receive denials for their disability claim, but the reasons aren’t always what they seem. In many cases, a denial is simply due to a lack of evidence or incorrect formatting. In the event that you have a legitimate, service-connected injury that was denied by Veterans Affairs (VA), consider a few claim system traits and ways to enhance your claim’s validity.

What Is A Service-Connected Disability?

The term ‘service-connected’ refers to any disability that happened during military service or a later complication that was caused by military service. The distinction covers immediate issues such as broken bones, chemical exposure, reported psychological trauma (experiencing death, sexual assault and other experiences) as well as conditions such as cancer that may not be detected until years after military service ends.

There is no distinction between active duty and reserve military status; simply military duty and injuries that occurred during that duty. In the event that you were found at fault for events such as vehicle accidents, illegal assault not related to combat operations or self-inflicted wounds, there are slight changes to your claim that may still be covered by certain VA health benefits.

To support a service-connected claim, you need documentation that links your injuries to your claim. Such documentation can come from your military medical record, civilian hospital records, complaints made in official format or events listed in your service record or recognized public events that can prove your injury and involvement.

In some cases, the evidence may not be available. Your paperwork could have been lost, which can be an issue if your medical record was not electronically recorded (such as military commands without record-keeping capabilities). You may have ignored the problem, only to find out that the injury is far worse than anticipated. For these issues, it’s better to get the assistance of a personal injury attorney.

Legal Assistance For Proving Injuries After The Fact

If your injuries are not documented prior to military service, or if your medical documentation isn’t enough for the claims system, a lawyer can help you develop evidence in a format that the VA understands.

You’ll need to visit a medical team that can analyze your condition accurately and create a set of statements that fit with your disability claim. Getting the evidence is only one part; if you can’t accurately link the evidence to your injury or condition, the claim may be denied or delayed until the clarification can be made. An injury attorney can link the evidence in a way that the VA is less likely to deny.

Contact a personal injury attorney such as Boucher Law Firm to begin developing a claim with a better chance of success.

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3 Facts You Need To Know Before Filing For Divorce

Before heading to the courthouse to file your divorce petition, there are a few facts that you should know. Taking the time to review these important facts outlined below can help you to avoid potential delays in the processing of your divorce petition and may even save you a bit of money along the way.

You May Be Able To Expedite Your Divorce With A Simplified Divorce Petition

Many states now offer select couples the ability to file what is known as a simplified divorce petition. By eliminating the need for extensive court involvement, these divorce petitions allow couples to finalize their divorce in a matter of weeks rather than months. Furthermore, by limiting the number of court appearances to just one appearance, couples are often able to save a considerable amount of money on legal fees by choosing to file a simplified petition.

In order to file a simplified divorce petition, you will need to meet all of the criteria listed below.

  • You and your spouse must agree that your marriage is irretrievably broken.
  • You and your spouse must agree upon the decision to get divorced.
  • You and your spouse must agree on the way in which your marital property will be divided.
  • You and your spouse cannot share any children in common.

You Cannot Serve Your Own Spouse With Divorce Papers

The court requires that all parties listed on your divorce petition be informed of the proceedings and given ample time to file an answer with the court. In order to prove that all parties were in fact given this opportunity, the court will require that your spouse is served with an official copy of the divorce petition. While many people make the mistake of believing this is a task they can complete on their own, the truth is, the court does not recognize the delivery of these documents from one spouse to another as legal service. This is because you have a vested interest in the case.

In order to ensure your spouse cannot claim that they were not aware of the divorce proceedings, the court will require an independent agent to serve your spouse with divorce papers. This independent agent must be over the age of 18, have no vested interest in the case, and be willing to testify in court if necessary regarding their delivery of these documents.

An Uncontested Divorce Does Not Mean You Don’t Need To Hire An Attorney

People often believe that there is no reason to hire a legal office like Madison Law Firm PLLC when filing an uncontested divorce petition. However, the fact is, an uncontested petition simply means that your spouse has agreed not to fight the divorce. This does not mean that there will be no points of disagreement during the course of the proceedings. While you may agree on the need to get divorced, your spouse’s understanding attitude might change when it comes to matters such as child custody, or property division. Retaining an attorney will ensure that your best interest remains protected if these types of issues should arise.

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Understanding The Difficulties Of Veterans Affairs Claims

The Veterans Affairs (VA) disability claim system is designed to help veterans in need, but it’s far from perfect. With complex requirements and frustrating delays, the system may put too much burden on an already distressed veteran who may not be able to learn the system quickly enough to get the help needed in a timely fashion. Whether you’re filing an initial claim, facing a denial or working through an appeal, a few concepts of the VA claim system can help you prepare for success and reduce stress throughout the process.

Why Are Claims Denied?

In order to serve the most veterans with the support needed, the VA Compensation and Pension (C&P) system is designed to compensate veterans who were injured during military service. If your claim isn’t related to military service, lacks sufficient information linking it to military service or isn’t severe enough, you may receive a denial.

The C&P system places veterans through a fact-finding process that includes medical examination. A veteran will both be examined for the validity of his or her injuries and given treatment for existing issues. Even if you don’t earn a disabled status after the examination, you can request examination and certain basic support such as medication during the examination process.

What Is A Service-Connected Disability?

The VA system grants enough money to support a low-to-middle income household in many instances, and many veterans are after that kind of support. In order to filter out fraudulent claims or injuries that weren’t related to military service, the VA employs a service-connected test to every claim.

A service-connected disability is any condition that was cause by or related to military service. From broken legs or irritated backs caused by physical trauma and harsh conditions to psychological trauma caused by events in the military, you can claim many issues as long as they happened during military service or were triggered by military service.

The connection is not so simple as being related to military tasks; you don’t have to be on duty or performing your normal job in order for the injury to be service-connected. Wartime, workplace and domestic incidents can all be service-connected as long as the event happened during your military service.

To complicate things, the timing of the injury is taken into consideration. Many individuals end their military service because of injuries that may not be enough to warrant a medical discharge. Just because you’re not being discharged doesn’t mean the problem doesn’t matter, but it may seem strange to claims processors.

Some claim denials end with the statement “injury occurred too close to EAOS” (End of Active Duty Service), noting that your injury claim seems a bit too close to the end of your career. It could be seen as an attempt to claim compensation for a bogus injury at the end of service. Don’t take it personally; you may have been caught up in an overzealous attempt to deny scammers. 

Contact a personal injury attorney like Hagelgans and Veronis to build an injury claim that not only explains the legitimacy of your injuries, but the dire need for assistance after serving your country.

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