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Huntington Business & Commercial Law Blog

Validity of a Will after Divorce: How a Divorce Affects Your Will in WV

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Divorce can involve complex legal issues, but at a minimum it involves the identification and protection of each party's rights and property following the termination of the marriage. But what happens when a spouse executes a will during the marriage and the parties later divorce? Former spouses may wonder about the validity of a will after divorce under West Virginia law. Where do they turn for answers?

Update: Temporary Total Disability and WV Workers' Compensation Overpayment

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West Virginia workers' compensation news continues in June 2018. An announcement by the West Virginia Offices of the Insurance Commissioner and an opinion handed down by the West Virginia Supreme Court of Appeals have employers paying attention. First, the Insurance Commission has released the Workers' Compensation Benefit Rates for the 2019 fiscal year. And second, the appellate court handed down its opinion in Reed v. Exel Logistics, Inc., creating questions about how to recover a WV workers' compensation overpayment.

Identifying and Reporting Elder Abuse in WV

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When our elderly loved ones become unable to care for themselves, we often rely on caretakers, assisted living facilities, and nursing homes to help. We put our trust in people to provide care to our vulnerable family members. Unfortunately, elder abuse in WV often goes unreported because signs are missed or people are not sure whether something "counts" as abuse or neglect.

May a Child Inherit from a Parent in WV after Parental Rights Are Terminated?

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In West Virginia (WV) as in many states, ownership of a decedent's property often passes according to the terms in the decedent's will. When the decedent did not leave a valid will, his or her property passes according to the law of intestate succession. In such cases, the property passes to the decedent's child if there is no surviving spouse. But what happens if the decedent's parental rights had been terminated? Can a child inherit from a parent in WV after the termination of parental rights? The West Virginia Supreme Court of Appeals recently answered that question in the negative.

Incorporating Community Benefits into Your Elder Care and Estate Plan

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As we age, our overall needs change. Our need for healthcare services may increase, our ability to tend to our own needs may decrease, and our finances may be limited. Government healthcare and retirement programs don't cover the day-to-day issues many seniors and their families face, but careful estate planning can. When considering your needs for elder care and estate plan strategies, remember to include community senior benefits and senior caregiving in your estate plan.

Including Medicare and Medicaid in Your Estate Plan: An Overview

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Have you considered including Medicare and Medicaid in your estate plan? Many people forget the importance of considering these government healthcare benefits as part of their wider estate plan. Read on to learn more about these two programs and why you need to consider government healthcare benefits in your estate plan.

WV Workers' Compensation Statute of Limitations Addressed by Supreme Court

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On May 17, 2018, the West Virginia Supreme Court of Appeals issued a decision applying the WV workers' compensation statute of limitations to bar an untimely. The court's decision has broad implications for workers and employers across West Virginia. While it gives employers solace in that it is an employee's responsibility to initiate the claim process by filing a timely WC-1 form, it also reminds employers that a worker's reliance on conduct by the employer or a claim administrator regarding the filing of a claim may prevent the employer from relying on the statute of limitation to deny an untimely filed claim.

WV Workers' Compensation Meal Reimbursement Addressed by Supreme Court

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On April 11, 2018, the West Virginia Supreme Court of Appeals issued its opinion in an appeal of a Board of Review decision denying a WV workers' compensation meal reimbursement claim. The court determined that West Virginia workers' compensation law allows reimbursement for meal expenses during travel for an independent medical exam (IME) located 100 miles away from the claimant's home. The court's decision has broad implications for workers and employers across West Virginia.

Why You Should Discuss Social Security Disability Benefits with Your Estate Planning Attorney

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Most people think of an estate plan as just preparing a will and designating where your assets go upon your death. Broader than that, estate planning is actually the process of taking inventory of your assets and determining how to dispose of them for the remainder of your life as well as upon your death. This blog is the third in a series of five blogs discussing five basic types of elder benefits in West Virginia. The first two blogs covered employee retirement benefits and Social Security retirement benefits. This blog turns to why you should discuss Social Security disability benefits with your West Virginia estate planning lawyer.

Arch Coal, Inc. v. Lemon: When Job Activity Worsens a Noncompensable Injury

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In a very rare WV workers' compensation rehearing, the West Virginia Supreme Court of Appeals has reversed its earlier decision denying a workers' compensation claim for a secondary injury. In the first opinion, the court determined that the injury was not compensable because it was not work-related. On rehearing, the court withdrew its earlier decision, finding it was based on an inappropriate re-weighing of the facts. The court affirmed the determination by the West Virginia Workers' Compensation Board of Review, which had concluded that when job activity worsens a noncompensable injury, the resulting new injury is compensable.
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