C&W Journal

October 27, 2006

Separation And Child Custody

Custody means the legal right to keep, control, guard, care for and preserve a child and includes “legal custody” and “physical custody.” ...

October 27, 2006

Child Support Obligations

The law requires parents to provide support for their children who are unemancipated and eighteen (18) years of age and younger. Additionally, unique circumstances may require a parent to provide support for a child who is over eighteen (18) years of...

September 27, 2006

Benefit Of Self-Employment Income Slices Both Ways

The long-standing procedure of including self-employment earnings when calculating a claimant's entitlement to partial benefits is not proper, except for earnings from the self-employment job above and beyond the income from that position as of the...

September 27, 2006

Medicare Lightens Up

CMS has amended its stated threshold for determining which case settlements to review to confirm that Medicare’s interests are protected. Medicare approval of settlements was previously required for any settlement of $10,000 or more if the Claimant...

September 27, 2006

Police Report Needed For Uninsured Motorist Benefits

The policy issued by State Farm and, more importantly, the Motor Vehicle Financial Responsibility Law (MVFRL) required the filing of a police report when an accident occurs and the insured files a claim for UM benefits. The purpose of the MVFRL and...

September 27, 2006

Liability For Fall On Black Ice Colored By Human Intervention

The trial court granted a nonsuit based upon the doctrine of “Hills and Ridges” based upon testimony that the plaintiff fell on black ice because there was no evidence of human interference in the creation of the black ice. The Superior Court reversed...

September 27, 2006

Pre-Bid Investigation: Kilbuck Landslide

On September 19, 2006, a massive landslide occurred at a shopping plaza construction site in Kilbuck Township, PA that led to the shutdown of busy traffic and rail arteries. The development was related to a shopping complex to be anchored by a Walmart...

August 27, 2006

Layoffs Lower Wage Calculations

Whenever possible, the claimant’s earnings history is to be the basis of their wage calculation. Calculating wages upon anticipated earnings is speculative and, in cases in which the claimant is often laid off, a means of artificially inflating ones...

July 27, 2006

Business Continuity Planning

Like many of your clients, you may be a small business owner. We understand your problems and concerns, for we operate a small business, also. In the rush and stress of daily management, it is easy to put off or even overlook important strategic steps...

July 27, 2006

Guiding Your Family Through Difficult Transitions

We are often asked, “Do I need an estate plan?” or “Do I need a will?” These questions are like asking if you need a 2005 Honda Accord with a satellite radio receiver. You have assumed that you need a vehicle. You have not provided any information on...

June 27, 2006

Medicare's Effect on a Compromise and Release

Historically, workers’ compensation settlements essentially allowed a claimant to double dip. The cost of a claimant’s future medical exposure was taken into consideration when negotiating the lump sum to be paid to the claimant in exchange for the...

June 27, 2006

Child Support Status And Settling Claims

The Pennsylvania legislature passed Act 109 in summer 2006. Effective September 2006, workers’ compensation judges do not have authority to approve a compromise and release agreement until the claimant has proven either (a) that any child support...

May 27, 2006

Penalties In Workers’ Compensation

An issue that arises all too often for Employers in a workers’ compensation matter is that of penalties. Section 435 of the Workers’ Compensation Act provides that penalties shall be established in order to 1) expedite the reporting and processing of...

April 27, 2006

PA Mechanics’ Lien Law

Pennsylvania’s Mechanics’ Lien Law of 1963 (49 P.S.§ 1502(a)(2)) “is a creature of statute in derogation of the common law and any questions of interpretation shall be resolved in favor of a strict, narrow construction. To effectuate a valid lien...

April 27, 2006

Contractor Payment Rights

For contractors performing work in Pennsylvania, there are two legal tools available to obtain payment for services rendered. The Contractor and Subcontractor Payment Act (73 Pa.C.S.A.§§ 501-516) applies to private construction projects. The...

April 27, 2006

The Doctrine of “Hills and Ridges”

Pennsylvania Courts continue to adhere to the established common law regarding legal duties imposed on landowners. For snow and ice conditions, the Pennsylvania courts apply the Doctrine of “Hills and Ridges.” The Doctrine of Hills and Ridges only...

March 27, 2006

Apportioning Liability In Workers' Compensation

The issue of apportionment of liability arises when the Claimant sustains multiple injuries with different Employers or different carriers. This situation arises where a Claimant sustains an initial workplace injury that leads to a medical condition...

March 27, 2006

Penalty Petition Pitfalls In Pennsylvania

The extensive amendments to the PA Workers’ Compensation Act contained in Act 57 of 1996 created the need for new and/or updated forms or “Bureau documents.” Since passage of the Act, the Department of Labor and Industry has promulgated a host of...

February 27, 2006

“Yellow Freight” And An Untimely Answer

Yellow Freight refers to a line of cases related to the Commonwealth Court’s 1981 Decision in Yellow Freight Sys., Inc. v. WCAB (Madara), 423 A.2d 1125 (Pa. Commw. 1981) that defined the significant negative ramifications for the untimely filing...

February 27, 2006

Workers' Compensation Deadlines

In Pennsylvania workers’ compensation law, there are important deadlines for the defense to be aware of, which apply to both claimants and employers. ...

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