Jenkins Fenstermaker, PLLC

Local: 304.521.4571

Toll Free: 866.617.4736

Quality. Dedication. Service.

March 2018 Archives

ALL YOU NEED TO KNOW ABOUT SOCIAL MEDIA AND INSURANCE FRAUD

Social media is quickly becoming an important tool in the fight against insurance fraud, and it is also helping save insurers from paying out on exaggerated or bogus claims. According to CBS News, an increasing number of insurers are relying on evidence taken from social media when investigating claims. Social media can help insurers defend against claims in a wide variety of situations, including in auto accident claims, personal injury claims, and property claims. In fact, social media could be key to helping both insurers avoid paying out on fraudulent claims and ensuring that premiums are kept low for consumers. This article provides the basics of the relationship between social media and insurance fraud.

Let a Trust Lawyer in WV Help Complete Your Estate Plan

Many people in West Virginia (WV) and nationwide believe that having a simple will is all that is needed to prepare their estate. However, a simple will may not adequately cover the passing of all property and financial accounts to your heirs. You will want to work with a trust lawyer in WV to ensure you have a complete estate plan that includes not only a will but also any trust or other documents you need to effectuate your wishes.

The Role of Your WV Business Succession Planning Attorney

Savvy business owners know they have the best chance of meeting their business transition goals when they start early. Whether your company just opened its doors or retirement is right around the corner, you can get on track and stay there with the help of a business succession planning attorney experienced in your market. Whether you do business in West Virginia (WV), Kentucky (KY), or Ohio (OH), or elsewhere, you'll learn what to expect from your business succession planning attorney in this article.

PROTECT YOUR BUSINESS AGAINST WORKERS' COMPENSATION FRAUD IN WV

For many injured employees in West Virginia (WV), workers' compensation insurance provides a way for them to recover successfully from a workplace accident without too much harm on their finances. However, some employees are committing workers' compensation fraud in WV and end up significantly harming the businesses for which they work. In fact, an estimated 10 percent of insurance claims are suspected to be fraudulent, according to the National Insurance Crime Bureau (NICB). Thus, as a business owner, it is imperative that you know the warning signs of workers' compensation abuse in WV and consult an attorney regarding suspected fraudulent activities to protect your business from employees who might be taking advantage of the system.

HOUSE BILL 2159 AGAINST BULLYING IN THE WORKPLACE IN WEST VIRGINIA

The issue of bullying in the workplace in West Virginia has come front and center in recent years, especially with the widespread use of social media and the ability of a person or people to, directly or anonymously, threaten, demean, or humiliate others. In 2017, the West Virginia Legislature considered House Bill 2159, legislation to provide legal relief for a person who has suffered physical, economic, or psychological harm as a result of bullying in the workplace.

MAXIMIZING YOUR COMPANY'S VALUE FOR SALE: BUSINESS VALUATION AND SUCCESSION PLANNING

The value of a small business is not an absolute. Unfortunately, no business valuation calculator can effectively capture and account for the assets of a company. It is often more productive financially to engage the services of a business ownership transition attorney than to attempt to maximize company value without expert advice. This is one area where short-cutting usually leads to short-changing.

Staffing Agency Nurse Liability: What You Need to Know

Many hospitals address staffing shortages (nurses and physicians) through staffing agencies. In an attempt to provide certainty regarding staffing agency nurse liability, standard staffing contracts provide that the nurses and/or physicians (locum tenens) are employees of the staffing agency and not the hospital. The staffing agency agrees that the nurses or physicians provided shall abide by the hospital's policies and bylaws. The hospital determines the work schedules and provides all necessary equipment and supplies. The hospital and staffing agency also agree to purchase professional liability insurance and agree to terms of indemnification for the acts or omissions of their respective employees. All's well and good in the hospital professional liability shifting arrangement, right? Not necessarily.

WV Religious Freedom Bill Failed to Pass in 2016

In 2016, by an overwhelming majority, the West Virginia House of Delegates passed House Bill 4012 regarding WV religious freedom. The bill purported to provide a claim or defense to a person whose religious freedom was burdened by state action. But, in the same legislative session, the West Virginia Senate rejected the "West Virginia Religious Freedom Protection Act" ("the Act").

START YOUR INTERNAL TRANSITION WHEN YOU IDENTIFY POTENTIAL SUCCESSORS

Small business owners who have decided to pursue an internal ownership transition often struggle with where to start. This blog is the fourth in a series of six designed to help small business owners ease into the transition process. In this article, we'll focus on how to identify potential successors in the internal transition process.

Admissibility of Evidence of Seatbelt Non-Use in a Civil Action Under 2017 Senate Bill 55

The West Virginia Legislature introduced legislation in the 2016 and 2017 regular sessions that would have amended §17C-15-49 of the West Virginia Code regarding operation of vehicles with safety belts, also called seatbelts. During the 2017 session, West Virginia Senate Bill 55 was introduced and referred to the judiciary committee; a similar bill was introduced in the House, but neither bill passed. Given the interest in the bill, it is likely to be reintroduced during the 2018 regular session. If the legislature ever passed such a bill, how would that affect the admissibility of evidence of seatbelt non-use?

Workplace Drug Testing in WV Under the WV Safer Workplaces Act

As of July 7, 2017, employers have much more leeway to conduct workplace drug testing in WV for illegal drugs--but only if employers also institute new procedural safeguards. That is because on April 8, 2017 the House of Delegates passed the West Virginia Safer Workplaces Act.

DECIDING ON THE TYPE OF BUSINESS OWNERSHIP TRANSITION: INTERNAL, EXTERNAL, OR CLOSURE?

Business succession planning is a process. It takes time to define your goals and structure your plan to best achieve those goals. This blog is the third in a series of six designed to help small business owners make important decisions about business ownership transition. Whether you do business in West Virginia (WV) or elsewhere, you'll learn helpful tips from reading this blog series.
Jenkins Fenstermaker, PLLC