Alan E. DeWoskin, P.C.
Call to schedule an appointment today.
314-925-0242 or 800-652-5775

St. Louis Legal Issues Blog

Military divorce and a deploying parent delegating visitation

Divorce is hard on any family, but when one of the family members is in the military and might need to deploy at a moment's notice, it is even more complicated. With the number of military members in or from Missouri, it is important to understand how certain factors related to a military divorce are handled once a parent deploys. Visitation and keeping the deploying parent and that parent's family involved with the child is one such issue and it can be the foundation for a substantial dispute. Having legal assistance with these complex matters requires a law firm experienced in representing service members and their spouses.

When a deploying parent requests his or her visitation rights be delegated to another person, it is imperative to understand how the law handles such a circumstance. This can be done through a motion from the parent who is deploying or a family member with the consent of the deploying parent. The court has the right to delegate the visitation rights or part of those rights to a family member who has close and substantial ties to the child or children while the parent is deployed. This is contingent on the child's best interests.

SSDI and compassionate allowances

It is no secret that applying for Social Security Disability benefits is a long and often frustrating process. Because of the high rate of fraudulent applications, agents at the Social Security Administration are diligent about scrutinizing applicants, evaluating their conditions and examining their claims. The SSA denies the claims of many first-time applicants.

Months may pass between the time an applicant files for benefits and the time when that applicant received word that the SSA has accepted or denied the application. If you are suffering from certain medical conditions, you may not have that kind of time, and the SSA understands this. In response, it has established a list of conditions that can place you on the fast track for the processing of your claim.

How the gig economy impacts Social Security disability benefits

In Missouri and across the nation, an increasing number of people are taking part in contingency work - also known as the "gig economy." While this can be beneficial to people and companies, it also raises concerns as to how people who are contingent workers will fare if they are injured, ill or suffer a condition and need Social Security disability benefits. A recent study from Boston College says that these workers should have help in dealing with SSD benefits. Of course, when anyone suffers a work-related injury or any other kind of medical issue that prevents them from working, they should have legal assistance.

The study, conducted by the Center for Retirement Research at the college, says that contingent workers who range in age from their 50s to early 60s are not as likely to seek and be approved for SSD benefits when compared to workers who have a traditional job in the same age range. The researchers say that people who have done this type of work from age 50 to 64 are more than 2 percent less likely to apply for SSD benefits. When considering that 8 percent of workers in that age range apply for SSD, the lesser number is a significant amount of people.

Objecting to a consultative source for Social Security disability

In some Missouri cases in which a person is seeking Social Security disability benefits for injury, the decision cannot be made based on the evidence the Disability Determination Services and the Social Security Administration has. To come to an informed conclusion and ensure that everyone whose issues are of sufficient severity to be approved, the applicant will be asked to take part in a consultative examination.

The applicant will generally be obligated to take part in the examination. If he or she refuses, then the decision will be made based on the available evidence and since the request was made to have a consultative exam to decide, it is likely that the available evidence will result in a denied claim. However, there are circumstances in which the applicant will object to the medical source that was selected to perform the exam. While this will not eliminate the need to have the exam, it can assuage concerns about the medical professional who is conducting it with a change.

Legal help is key with child support in a military divorce

Military members in Missouri and across the nation face a great deal of stress and pressure given the requirements of their service. In many instances, that can take a toll on a marriage and spark a military divorce. As with any divorce, there will be a litany of issues that must be navigated. That includes spousal support, child custody and child support. Caring for children is one of the key issues in a military divorce and given the difficult nature of a military life - especially for children - it is imperative to have legal help to address these issues.

All family law issues can differ when they are in a military context and people who have one or both spouses who are members of the military. Child support is complicated in any case, but with military circumstances, it is even harder to handle. Like to a civilian child support determination, the court will order how much will be paid in child support. There is a formula that will be used. It considers custody and the income of the spouses.

How is a disability claim assessed with a lung transplant?

For Missourians who are suffering from a lung condition or disease, it can be nearly impossible to complete most tasks and to function every day. For these individuals, if the disease reaches a certain point where there are no effective alternatives for treatment, a lung transplant might be necessary. Since the aftercare for a lung transplant is extensive and the person will require substantial monitoring, they will not be able to get back to work for an extended period, if they can at all. This will impact whether they meet the requirements for qualifying SSD benefits for illness.

Understanding how the Social Security Administration evaluates lung transplantation is critical to a claim before and after the surgery. If a person has a lung transplant either by itself or with other organs in the body, the SSA will view the person as being disabled for three years from the date the transplant took place. After those three years have elapsed, there will be an evaluation of their impairment or impairments by assessing how their lungs are functioning after the transplant, if there is bodily rejection, how frequently and severe they are, if there are complications in other areas of the body, and what side-effects there are with the treatment.

What if there is a dispute over an irretrievably broken marriage?

In Missouri, one of the basic requirements for a couple to be granted a divorce is relatively simple in that the marriage must be irretrievably broken. In many cases, the parties will agree that the marriage is no longer viable and will state that it is irretrievably broken, allowing them to divorce. However, in some instances, one of the parties will deny the dispute is sufficient that that the marriage is irretrievably broken. When this happens, it is important to understand how the law handles these cases and what to do next. Having legal assistance with complex divorce issues such as this is key.

When a party has denied the other party's assertion that the marriage is irretrievably broken, the court will account for various factors. That includes how and why the filing was made in the first place and if there is a chance that the couple can reconcile. Evidence will be provided and after that, the court will determine if it is irretrievably broken.

Pension, custody and other unique issues in a military divorce

Divorce is a difficult and complex process, and it can be particularly difficult for couples when one or both spouses serve in the military. There are various things that can make a military divorce complicated, and it may be in your interests to know what to expect and how to protect your interests. Preparation can help you avoid unnecessary complications and have reasonable expectations.

A military divorce works in the same way that a civilian divorce does. However, there are a few issues that make these types of divorces unique, such as potential deployments and division of military pension. If you are facing a divorce and you are a military service member, or your spouse is, there are certain things you may need to know before you make a choice that can impact your future.

Plan would seek Social Security Disability fraud via social media

When a Missourian has an injury, illness or condition that prevents them from being able to work, Social Security Disability (SSD) benefits are a solution to the unavoidable litany of problems that accompany this. Medical costs, the need for help in making ends meet - there are some of the challenges that a person who needs SSD will face. Legal help with a case is imperative regardless of the circumstances, especially when a person is legitimately disabled and might face a denied claim due to allegations of fraud.

It is unfortunate that some people who are not sufficiently injured or ill will seek SSD benefits and commit fraud, but it does happen. For those who are seeking or receiving benefits and meet all the federal requirements, a denied claim because of allegations of fraud is a legitimate concern especially when the government is considering using a person's social medial to look for evidence of wrongdoing. This can be problematic because social media feeds can be the foundation for misunderstanding. The goal is to surveil peoples' social media to determine if they are exaggerating their disability or are not disabled at all.

Permanent vs. nonpermanent impairments in an SSD review

Missourians who are approved for Social Security Disability (SSD) benefits should be aware that in most cases, the benefits have a time limit. Since the basic premise behind SSD benefits is to provide for those who are unable to provide for themselves due to an illness, condition or injury and many of these problems will eventually improve sufficiently so the person can get back to work, there will be periodic continuing disability reviews to ensure that the individual remains sufficiently disabled to keep getting benefits. Understanding permanent impairments vs. nonpermanent impairments is critical when preparing for a review.

For those whose impairment is permanent, the review is generally not a problem and their benefits will continue. For those whose disability is nonpermanent, it is possible their benefits will stop. A permanent impairment generally means there will be no expected medical improvement. The condition is so severe that the Social Security Administration believes it will stay the same or will worsen progressively or due to complications associated with it. Factors like the person's age, the current labor market and whether they can do substantial gainful activity (SGA) will be important. Examples of conditions that will be labeled as permanent are Parkinson's Syndrome of sufficient severity, ALS (Lou Gehrig's disease), diffuse pulmonary fibrosis for those 55 or older and an amputation of the leg at the hip.

Alan E. DeWoskin, P.C.
225 South Meramec Avenue, Suite 426
St. Louis, MO 63105

Toll Free: 800-652-5775
Phone: 314-925-0242
Fax: 314-727-5297
Map & Directions

google map