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Law Offices of Scott Warmuth Voted San Gabriel Valley’s Best Accident Attorney for 2020

Topics: From Our Office

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[vc_row][vc_column][vc_column_text]Scott Warmuth was voted the San Gabriel Valley's Best Accident Attorney for 2020!  The designation comes from the annual Reader's Choice Awards from the San Gabriel Valley News Group.  Every year, readers of the Pasadena Star-News, San Gabriel Valley Tribune, and Whittier Daily News are invited to choose their favorite local restaurants, services, and businesses. The Law Offices of Scott Warmuth is humbled and honored by the community support!  We strive to provide the best possible legal service and outcomes for our clients, and this recognition will only drive us to do better. You can find this year's selection of San Gabriel Valley's Best here. Thank you to everyone who voted for us and to our clients for trusting us with their legal case!  We hope we continue to earn our community's respect![/vc_column_text][vc_single_image image="4279" img_size="full" alignment="center"][/vc_column][/vc_row]
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Bayer to Pay $10 Billion to Settle Roundup Cancer Litigation

Topics: Consumer Law

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[vc_row][vc_column][vc_column_text]Bayer AG has agreed to pay $10 billion to settle existing and future litigation which claiming that the weed killer Roundup was causing cancer.  The manufacturer of Roundup, Monsanto, was acquired by Bayer in 2018.  The settlement will conclude about 95,000 legal cases across the country but does not admit liability or any wrongdoing.  An estimated 25,000 cases from parties who have not agreed to be included in the settlement will continue. Roundup's main ingredient glyphosate has been linked to a 41 percent increase risk in developing non-Hodgkin's lymphoma.  In 2018, a jury awarded $289 million to a school groundskeeper who developed cancer, saying Monsanto failed to warn consumer of the cancer risk.  In March 2019, $80 million was awarded to a homeowner for similar reasons.  And in May 2019, a California jury awarded over $2 billion to a couple who both developed non-Hodgkin's lymphoma after using Roundup for decades.  Though all three verdict amounts were eventually reduced, these three case outcomes may have pushed Bayer to settle what claims it could. See the full news story here. Product manufacturers have a duty to keep their products safe for consumption.  If consumers become injured while or after using a dangerous, faulty, or falsely advertised product, they may be entitled to legal damages from the manufacturer or retailer.  If you or a loved one has been injured by a defective product, it's important to speak with an attorney about possible compensation.  The Law Offices of Scott Warmuth provides free legal consultations to anyone who has been injured through no fault of their own.  Call us today at 888-517-9888![/vc_column_text][/vc_column][/vc_row]
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Trump Administration to Suspend Foreign Work Visas

Topics: Immigration

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[vc_row][vc_column][vc_column_text]In a widely expected move, the Trump administration finally announced that it was suspending foreign work visas, including the popular H-1B visa, through the end of the year.  The purported goal of the immigration proclamation is to protect U.S. workers seeking employment amidst the Covid-19 global pandemic; the Trump administration estimates the policy will prevent 525,000 American jobs from being filled by foreign workers.  Agricultural workers, health care workers, and food service workers are exempted.  The policy also does not apply to any foreign workers already in the United States. The ban includes several non-immigrant visas (with certain exceptions), including: Critics and business groups have voiced their displeasure with this proclamation, claiming it could hurt an economic recovery during the Covid-19 pandemic.  Workers who had planned to utilize one of these visas to enter the United States may be unable to do so until the end of the ban, currently set for December 31, 2020.  The U.S. presidential election may have a significant role in determining whether or not the ban could be extended.  This news joins many other recent stories of the Trump administration enacting policies to reduce immigration levels, with mixed success. See the full news story here. The Law Offices of Scott Warmuth continues to keep track of any possible changes to immigration law.  If you have questions about how this policy could affect you and whether or not anything can be done, we're here to help.  Call us at 888-517-9888 today to receive a free immigration consultation.[/vc_column_text][/vc_column][/vc_row]
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Supreme Court Rules DACA Recipients Safe – For Now

Topics: Immigration

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[vc_row][vc_column][vc_column_text]In what most observers are calling a surprise ruling, the U.S. Supreme Court today ruled that the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) program that protects 650,000 young undocumented immigrants from deportation cannot be immediately ended.  In the 5-4 ruling, the Supreme Court determined that the 2017 decision to unilaterally end DACA was arbitrary and capricious.  Because the administration did not provide a viable rationale for ending the program, the recision violated the Administrative Procedure Act.  That law dictates how the government can issue and retract regulations.  The Trump administration failed to provide a reasonable rationale for ending the program. How does this ruling affect Dreamers?  Dreamers with DACA protections can continue renewing their status, which provides work authorization, eligibility for federal financial aid in higher education, and protections from deportation for two years.  Eligible dreamers without DACA status should now be able to apply for the program.  DACA applications were halted when the program was illegally ended.  Though courts forced the Trump administration to process renewal applications during the court fight, they did not require new applications to be processed.  Details about processing new applications have not been announced at this time. Immigration attorney Yesenia Acosta hails the ruling, saying “This is a groundbreaking decision that will help our immigrant youth continue their dreams of pursuing a career of their choice through legal work authorization without living in fear of deportation.  A policy allowing all youth in the U.S. to pursue professional careers is the best investment in our future." It is unknown whether or not the Trump administration will attempt to legally end the DACA program after this ruling.  It is also unknown whether or not the U.S. Congress will examine possible legislation to protect Dreamers. The Law Offices of Scott Warmuth can help Dreamers with DACA renewals, DACA applications, and seeking possible avenues to permanent residence.  Please call 888-517-9888 for a free immigration consultation.[/vc_column_text][/vc_column][/vc_row]
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Immigration Law Continues to Be in Flux

Topics: Immigration

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[vc_row][vc_column][vc_column_text]There has been an extraordinary level of important immigration news surfacing over the past week or so, much of which can have a direct effect on anyone attempting to navigate the U.S. immigration system.  For 35 years, the Law Offices of Scott Warmuth has been helping immigrants work and live in the United States.  Our immigration attorneys are always examining and reacting to changes in immigration law, big and small.  Whether you are seeking a temporary visa or green card, we offer free immigration consultations.  Call our offices today at 888-517-9888!

Supreme Court Declines to Hear Case Regarding California's Sanctuary Law

California's Sanctuary law which prevents, under most circumstances, local law enforcement officials from cooperating with federal immigration officials will stand after the U.S. Supreme Court declined to hear a Trump administration appeal.  A district court judge originally ruled that the California law did not impede federal immigration authorities from their duties.  A U.S. Court of Appeals for the 9th Circuit panel agreed with the district judge.  California argued that the sanctuary law was implemented as a way to build trust between immigrant communities and local law enforcement. See the full news story here.

United States Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) Warns About Furloughs

Due to budget shortfalls arising from the Covid-19 pandemic, USCIS announced to its employees that furloughs could begin on July 20th.  The action could affect around 13,000 government workers, more than two of every three agency workers.  This could potentially affect visa and green card applications.  USCIS offices only recently began reopening after an extended closure due to the pandemic.  USCIS has asked the U.S. Congress for $1.2 billion in emergency funding. See the full news story here.

Trump Administration Pushes Restrictions to Legal Immigration

Emergency border closures due to Covid-19 have prevented many asylum seekers from entering the U.S.  A new proposal from the Trump administration would seek to extend many of those rules after the threat of the global pandemic has receded.  The rule would raise the standard of proof required for asylum seekers to have their day in court.  Other restrictions include a rule to prevent undocumented and Deferred Action for Childhood Arrival (DACA) students from receiving Covid-19 relief funds and possible restrictions on the H-1B visa program. See the full news story here.[/vc_column_text][/vc_column][/vc_row]
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Federal Judge Rules Courthouse Arrests by ICE are Illegal in New York

Topics: Immigration

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[vc_row][vc_column][vc_column_text]A federal judge in New York ruled on Wednesday that arrests by Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) conducted at courthouses in the state are illegal.  Elected officials, police representatives, prosecutors' offices, and immigration advocates have all decried the practice, which they say interferes with their ability to pursue criminal investigations and undermines the justice system.  The case to stop the practice was brought by the New York Attorney General and District Attorney for the Brooklyn borough of New York City. See the full news story here. What remains to be seen is whether or not ICE will abide by the ruling.  Ordinarily, one would expect a government agency to follow a court's orders and obey the law.  However, this has not always been the case for this particular issue.  Last October, California passed AB 668 which includes protection from civil arrest at a courthouse unless pursuant to a valid judicial warrant.  ICE openly ignored the California law in February and March, arresting at least seven people for immigration offenses in Northern California courthouses.  At the time, ICE argued that California law does not supersede federal law.  It remains to be seen whether ICE will obey a federal court order in New York. The uncertainty of immigration law and immigration enforcement actions over the past few years is a constant worry for immigration lawyers.  The immigration team at the Law Offices of Scott Warmuth constantly monitor the rapidly-evolving immigration situation with the ultimate goal of helping our clients.  If you have a question about immigration and living or working legally in the United States, call us today at 888-517-9888 to receive a free consultation.  For immigrants facing legal trouble and potential removal from the United States, we also provide criminal defense and deportation defense services.[/vc_column_text][/vc_column][/vc_row]
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Supreme Court DACA Ruling Expected this Month

Topics: Immigration

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** UPDATE **

Supreme Court Rules DACA Recipients Safe - For Now

A Supreme Court ruling on the legality of the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) program is expected this month.  DACA protects about 650,000 young undocumented immigrants who were brought into the United States as children from deportation.  The program also allows the protected immigrants, often called Dreamers, to attend school and work legally.  The Trump administration faced immediate court challenges when it rescinded the program back in 2017.  Certain aspects of DACA have remained in effect while the issues have been litigated. If the U.S. Supreme Court determines that the program was enacted unlawfully, the Trump administration would be allowed to terminate the program, immediately ending deportation protection and work authorization for the 650,000 recipients.  Should the court rule in their favor, political analysts believe that the administration would not immediately end the program, but would instead end protections gradually, perhaps as a bargaining chip in future immigration legislation.  In 2019, the House of Representatives passed legislation that would guarantee legal status and a path to citizenship for Dreamers, but the issue was never examined by the Senate. The uncertainty surrounding the future of DACA over the past few years has been a constant burden on many program recipients.  Most analysts expect that the Supreme Court will rule that the program must be ended, but regardless of how the Supreme Court rules, the fight over the future of Dreamers will likely continue on. See the full news story here. The immigration lawyers at the Law Offices of Scott Warmuth will continue to watch for any possible changes to immigration law.  We strongly recommend that DACA recipients pursue permanent legal residence through any available means as soon as possible due to the uncertainty of the situation.  Our immigration law firm provides free initial consultations.  Call us at 888-517-9888 today to schedule yours![/vc_column_text][/vc_column][/vc_row]
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The K-1 Visa – AKA the 90 Day Fiancé Visa

Topics: Immigration

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[vc_row][vc_column][vc_column_text]The K-1 visa is a temporary visa that allows non-citizen fiancé(e)s of United States citizens to enter the country legally for the purpose of marriage.  The number of K-1 visas issued annually hovers around 30,000-35,000 and is targeted towards a fairly niche group of immigrants.  Yet the cultural relevance of the K-1 visa is significant due to popular TLC TV show 90 Day Fiancé.  Reality TV often brings general awareness to seemingly random topics, and it seems that certain immigration laws are not an exception. The TLC show's name is slightly misleading as nearly all of the couples applying for a K-1 visa are typically engaged much longer than 90 days before entering the country.  The 90 days refers to the length of time recipients of the K-1 visa have upon entry into the country to become married.  The 90 day period is not intended as a period of time in which to decide whether to get married, but is intended to be used as time to organize and host the wedding.  However, it is not unheard of to have a wedding called off due to a change of heart.  If the proposed marriage dissolves, the foreign national must return to his or her home country before the expiration of the K-1 visa, similar to any other non-immigrant visa. K-1 visas do have more requirements other than the intention to get married to a United States citizen.  Both parties must be eligible to be married legally in the United States and the couple must have met in person at least once in the previous two years.  The meet in person requirement can be waived to accommodate certain social or religious customs or if it would create extreme hardship. In order to receive a K-1 visa, the U.S. citizen half of the couple must file immigration Form I-129F, Petition for Alien Fiancé(e).  If the application is approved, the foreign national half of the couple will need to interview with a Department of State consular officer at a U.S. embassy or consulate office in his or her home country.  After the K-1 visa is approved, the foreign national will have 6 months to enter the United States, and upon arrival, will have 90 days to get married.  After the marriage, the foreign national spouse can apply for a green card with United States Citizenship and Immigration Services.  Green cards stemming from K-1 visas are conditional for two years in order to prevent fraud. International couples seeking to settle in the U.S. can seek guidance and legal help from immigration attorneys.  The Law Offices of Scott Warmuth has been helping immigrants to the United States for more than 35 years.  Our immigration experts provide free consultations over the phone.  Call us today at 888-517-9888 to schedule your free consultation today![/vc_column_text][/vc_column][/vc_row]
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Common Questions in Workers’ Comp Cases – Part 1 – Disability

Topics: Workers' Compensation

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[vc_row][vc_column][vc_column_text]What is temporary disability (TD)? Temporary disability is a workers' compensation benefit that offers short term financial help to injured workers.  If a worker is hospitalized or misses a minimum of three days of work, he or she may be eligible to collect TD benefits.  Benefit availability is dependent on whether or not an employer can offer the injured worker accommodations without reducing pay. When will I receive temporary disability payments? Usually, an employer or insurer will require medical verification of your disability.  TD benefit payments as soon as they receive written verification of the disability.  It may take longer to receive benefits if an insurance company disputes the validity of a TD claim.  A workers' compensation attorney will work towards settling this dispute and ensuring the client receives benefits as soon as possible. How much money does temporary disability benefits provide? TD benefits pay 2/3 of the wages lost as the result of the injury.  In 2020, the maximum benefit amount is $1,299.43. How long do temporary disability benefits last? TD benefits will stop when your return to work willingly or your treating doctor releases you for work or declares you P&S.  Benefits can last up to a maximum of 104 weeks within a period of five years from your date of injury. What is permanent disability (PD)? Permanent disability is a program to compensate injured workers if their injury permanently impairs their ability to work.  When medical treatment no longer provides a benefit to an injured worker, doctors will declare the worker as "permanent and stationary" (P&S) and complete a report.  A qualified medical examiner (QME) will examine that report to determine a disability rating.  If the disability rating is higher than 0, the worker is considered permanently disabled and is eligible to receive PD benefits. When will I receive permanent disability payments? Permanent disability payments will only begin once temporary disability benefits have been exhausted.  Injured workers will only receive PD benefits being declared permanent disabled by a QME. How much money does permanent disability benefits provide? PD benefits are 2/3 of an injured worker's average weekly earnings, but are $160 per week at minimum and $290 per week at maximum. How long do permanent disability benefits last? The length of benefits is determined by your disability rating.  The higher the disability rating, the longer that benefits are provided.  Disability ratings greater than 70 percent receive benefits for life. Do I need an attorney? Do you have unanswered questions after suffering a work injury?  Your employer and claims manager may not be willing to answer them, but we are here to help!  The Law Offices of Scott Warmuth provides legal assistance to injured workers.  If you or a loved one has been injured on the job, you may be entitled to certain benefits, including medical treatment and disability payments.  Speak with a workers' compensation expert today by calling 888-517-9888![/vc_column_text][/vc_column][/vc_row]