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Stop Tailgating!

Topics: Auto Accident

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[vc_row][vc_column][vc_column_text]Tailgating, the practice of driving very closely behind another vehicle, is one of the most dangerous driving behaviors one can exhibit.  It's also extremely common: about three out of four drivers surveyed had been tailgated at least once in the past 6 months.  Tailgating dramatically increases the risk of a rear-end crash because if the leading car has to come to an abrupt stop, the trailing car will have very little time to react to avoid a collision.  Rear-end crashes kill thousands of people across the country every year.  Keeping a safe distance from the vehicle ahead of you can literally save your life. Many drivers who are tailgating may not be aware of the danger.  Experts recommend keeping at least a two second distance between your vehicle and the vehicle in front of you in ideal conditions.  If the conditions are not ideal, such as rain, snow, or fog, more distance should be given to the leading vehicle.  If the vehicle ahead of you were to slam on its brakes, would you be able to stop safely without hitting that vehicle?  If the answer is not "200 percent yes", you're likely traveling too closely. Should you be on the receiving end of a tailgating vehicle, there are certain ways to reduce your risk of being rear-ended.  If you're in a position to change lanes safely, doing so will hopefully allow the tailgater to pass your vehicle.  If you're not, leave extra space between you and the car in front of you to allow yourself extra time to stop should that vehicle come to an abrupt stop.  This extra time will hopefully translate to giving the tailgating vehicle extra time to stop as well, avoiding a collision.  Never perform a 'brake check' on tailgating vehicles.  This could not only lead to a collision, but a possible road rage incident.  There are no winners in a road rage incident. If you have been rear-ended by a tailgating driver and have suffered injury, you may be entitled to financial compensation for medical care, lost wages, vehicle repair, and pain and suffering.  An experienced car accident lawyer at the Law Offices of Scott Warmuth can help you protect your legal rights.  For a free accident consultation, call us today at 888-517-9888.[/vc_column_text][/vc_column][/vc_row]
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Trump Administration Plans New Attempt to End DACA

Topics: Immigration

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[vc_row][vc_column][vc_column_text]The Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) program has been on a roller coaster since the Trump administration attempted to end the program in 2017.   Recently, the Supreme Court ruled that the attempts to end DACA were done arbitrarily and capriciously, violating the Administrative Procedure Act.  Experts assumed the Supreme Court ruling would open the program to new applicants, but new applications were being rejected, prompting a federal judge to rule that USCIS must begin to accept new DACA applications. New reporting from Reuters today details reports that the Trump administration, rather than opening DACA for new recipients, will review the Supreme Court ruling and begin a new attempt to end the program.  The reporting indicates that USCIS will continue to ignore new DACA applications, despite the Supreme Court ruling and federal court order to accept new applications.  This will likely invite further legal action from immigrant rights advocates, but it is unknown if it will help.  The new action will also reduce the length of a DACA protection renewal from two years to one year. See the full news story here. DACA will continue to exist in some form through the 2020 U.S. election.  The fate of the program will likely rest on the outcome of the election.  This news story is breaking, so new information may become available. The Law Offices of Scott Warmuth has been helping people live and work legally in the United States since 1984.  For a free immigration legal consultation, call us today at 888-517-9888.  Our immigration attorneys continue to monitor the situation surrounding DACA.[/vc_column_text][/vc_column][/vc_row]
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OSHA Accused of Failing to Keep Meatpacking Workers Safe

Topics: Covid-19, Workers' Compensation

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[vc_row][vc_column][vc_column_text]A lawsuit filed today accuses the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) of failing to meet its mission during the Covid-19 global pandemic.  The lawsuit, brought by meatpacking workers in Pennsylvania, claims OSHA failed to protect the workers from what they claimed is a hazardous working environment.  Meatpacking plants across the country have been hotbeds of coronavirus outbreaks throughout the crisis.  OSHA insists that existing regulations and Covid-19 guidelines are capable of keeping workers safe. Back in May, the meatpacking workers filed a complaint with OSHA against their employer, Maid-Rite Specialty Foods.  In this complaint, the workers accused the company of not providing protective gear, creating physical distancing for workers on the processing line, not separating employees who were sick, failing to inform employees who worked closely with infected coworkers, and creating incentives for employees who worked while sick.  The new lawsuit accuses OSHA of an inadequate response to the May complaint. After receiving the complaint, OSHA requested that the company investigate and document the concerns and implement corrections, but also made it clear that it would not be inspecting the plant.  The new lawsuit alleges that the issues with the original complaint still exist. See the full news story here. Similar lawsuits recently filed against OSHA during the pandemic have been dismissed in court, but the concerns over OSHA and worker safety remain.  Workplace safety, especially related to preventing the spread of coronavirus, has come into focus during the pandemic.  In California, from May 6 to July 5, any worker who worked on site and was diagnosed with Covid-19 was eligible for workers' compensation benefits.  Since the expiration of the order, Covid-19 has continued to spread across the state.  It is unknown if the order will be extended or renewed, but the possible lack of workers' compensation related to a Covid-19 diagnosis only highlights further the importance of providing proper worker safety oversight. Any injury that occurs while working in California is eligible for workers' compensation benefits.  The Law Offices of Scott Warmuth helps injured workers pursue those benefits.  If you've been injured at work, call 888-517-9888 today for a free consultation.[/vc_column_text][/vc_column][/vc_row]
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Judge Rules USCIS Must Accept New DACA Applications

Topics: Immigration

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[vc_row][vc_column][vc_column_text]It has been one month since the U.S. Supreme Court unexpectedly ruled that the Trump administration could not immediately end the DACA program.  With the ruling, immigration experts and advocates, including the Law Offices of Scott Warmuth, expected the DACA program to reopen in full, again allowing eligible Dreamers to apply for protections.  Reporting just last week indicated that new applications were being immediately rejected without consideration, showing disdain for the recent Supreme Court ruling.  However, last Friday, a federal judge in Maryland ruled that the Trump administration must begin processing these new applications in good faith. United States Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) claimed that any first-time applications they received were sent rejection notices because of technical errors or because of reasons related to incomplete applications, but many immigration experts were skeptical.  Denial notices specifically mentioned that USCIS was not accepting new initial applications.  It is estimated that about 300,000 new young immigrants would be eligible to apply for DACA for the first time since the Trump administration attempted to end the program in 2017.  It is unknown whether USCIS will follow this district court ruling properly. See the full news story here. The Law Offices of Scott Warmuth helps DACA recipients and young immigrants seeking DACA protections for the first time.  We continue to track any potential developments that may affect the DACA program.  If you or someone you love is seeking to renew or pursue DACA protections, call our offices today at 888-517-9888 to receive a free consultation.[/vc_column_text][/vc_column][/vc_row]
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Law Offices of Scott Warmuth Purchases Gift Cards to Support Local Community, Businesses

Topics: From Our Office

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[vc_row][vc_column][vc_column_text]Some San Gabriel families struggling to put food on the table will benefit from a gift of restaurant gift cards donated by the Law Offices of Scott Warmuth. The novel coronavirus outbreak and resulting pandemic has resulted in severe hardship for many local businesses and individuals throughout the community.  An estimated 2.4 million Californians have lost their job during this crisis and many small businesses have struggled.  The Law Offices of Scott Warmuth wanted to do something to help and turned to the San Gabriel Chamber of Commerce for guidance. Working with the Chamber, the Law Offices of Scott Warmuth purchased $5,000 worth of gift cards to three local restaurants and donated the gift cards to Asian Youth Center, a local non-profit.  AYC will be able to distribute the gift cards to local families struggling with food insecurity. We hope our donation will have a double impact, supporting three local small businesses in San Gabriel and providing food to families in need. Clearman's Galley - 7215 Rosemead Blvd - Clearman's Galley also donated an additional $400 to benefit Asian Youth Center! Stuffed Sandwich - 1145 E. Las Tunas Dr Luna's Mexican Restaurant - 343 S Mission Dr The Law Offices of Scott Warmuth will continue to do its part to support our local community.  We provide important, affordable legal services throughout Southern California.  For a free legal consultation, call us today at 888-517-9888.[/vc_column_text][/vc_column][/vc_row][vc_row][vc_column width="1/2"][vc_single_image image="4312" img_size="full" add_caption="yes" alignment="center"][/vc_column][vc_column width="1/2"][vc_single_image image="4313" img_size="full" add_caption="yes" alignment="center"][/vc_column][/vc_row]
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Student Visa Remote Learning Policy Rescinded

Topics: Immigration

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[vc_row][vc_column][vc_column_text]A day after 17 states and the District of Columbia sued to block the Trump administration policy targeting international students, the policy has been rescinded.  California, Harvard University, and Massachusetts Institute of Technology had also filed lawsuits targeting the policy.  The now-rescinded policy stated that foreign students could not stay in the United States on a student visa if their college or university was providing 100 percent online learning this fall. The defunct policy, announced by Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) last week, was seen as a counterproductive way to limit legal immigration during a global pandemic.  It had the potential to affect many of the 1.1 million foreign students currently attending university in the country, but it is not known how the lawsuits against the policy would have ended.  The Trump administration received significant push back on this immigration policy as it could have negatively affected so many people without having any perceivable benefits. See the full news story here. Under more normal times, international students are limited to how many online courses they can take, but these limits were temporarily suspended due to the coronavirus outbreak.  The limits will now remain suspended for the time being. United States immigration policy remains extremely uncertain.  The Law Offices of Scott Warmuth continues to monitor any potential changes in immigration law to better help its clients seeking visas, green cards, and citizenship.  For a free immigration consultation, call us today at 888-517-9888.[/vc_column_text][/vc_column][/vc_row]
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Common Questions in Workers’ Comp Cases – Part 2 – Medical Care

Topics: Workers' Compensation

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[vc_row][vc_column][vc_column_text]When Can I See a Doctor? After reporting your injury to your supervisor or manager, your employer will have one working day to provide you with a Workers' Compensation Claim Form (DWC-1).  Upon completing the DWC-1 and returning it to your employer, you will be authorized to seek up to $10,000 in immediate medical treatment. Can I Choose My Own Doctor? Only in certain circumstances.  In most situations, you are not allowed to choose your own doctor in a workers' compensation claim.  Instead, you will be assigned a doctor inside your employer's medical provider network (MPN).  Choosing your own doctor needs to be done before you are injured, a process known as predesignation.  If you are injured without predesignating your preferred doctor, you will need to treat inside the MPN. How Long Can I Receive Medical Treatment? Medical treatment is provided until you make a full recovery or your recovery has advanced to a place where additional treatment will not improve your condition, resulting in permanent disability. Does Workers' Compensation Pay for My Medical Treatment? Until the status of your claim is determined, the insurer is responsible for your medical treatment.  If your claim is accepted, the insurer will continue to pay for your treatment.  If your claim is denied, the insurer will stop paying for treatment until your case is decided by a judge.  You can continue seeking treatment from a doctor who agrees to bill on a medical lien.  The cost for treatment will be paid by the insurance company if your appeal is successful.  In almost every circumstance, an injured worker is not responsible for his or her medical bills. Is My Employer Entitled to See My Medical Records? Your employer is not allowed to see your medical records, the only exception being information related to the diagnosis of your injury, the treatment of your injury, and information necessary to determine if they can offer you modified work.  However, the insurance company will be able to access your medical records for the purpose of approving or denying your workers' compensation claim. Will I Be Compensated for Travel to Medical Appointments? Yes, you are entitled to reimbursement for travel.  The mileage rate is set by state law.  You will need to keep track of your mileage and parking expenses on a log that will be provided to you.  You can submit this log as often as you wish to the claims administrator to receive reimbursement. Will a Workers' Compensation Attorney Help Me? Absolutely.  When you retain a workers' compensation law firm to help you with your work injury, any questions you have can be answered by an expert.  The Law Offices of Scott Warmuth can help you determine if the medical care you're receiving is right for you and help you switch doctors if it isn't.  If you or a loved one has been hurt while working, our team of professionals can help you on your road to physical and financial recovery.  Call us at 888-517-9888 today to receive a free consultation.[/vc_column_text][/vc_column][/vc_row]
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ICE Declares F-1/M-1 Visas Ineligible if School is Online-Only

Topics: Covid-19, Immigration

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** Update 7/14/2020 **

The policy has been rescinded.

 

** Update 7/8/2020 **

Harvard and MIT are suing the Trump administration over this matter.  See the news story here.

In an announcement on Monday, U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) declared that foreign students attending American schools on an F-1 student visa or an M-1 vocational student visa cannot legally stay in the United States if they are attending a school that only offers online course because of the global coronavirus pandemic.  The announcement has left many immigration experts perplexed, as the announcement does not seem to have any benefits, but could have drastic negative consequences for educational institutions, public health, and the overall economy. The Chronicle of Higher Education is tracking how colleges and universities will operate in the upcoming fall semester.  Of 1,100 tracked schools, about 8 percent are currently planning to operate in an online-only model, including Harvard University.  The ICE decision may force Harvard and other institutions planning for online-only education to scrap their plans and conduct at least some in-person classes, inviting potential health risks.  Students attending institutions that remain committed to online-only education could be forced to leave the country, transfer schools, reduce course loads, or take appropriate medical leave. The ICE decision move could affect the nearly 1.1 million foreign students attending school in the U.S., as well as the financial standing the many colleges and universities in the U.S. that depend on international students to remain fiscally solvent.  NAFSA: Association of International Educators estimated that international students attending school in the U.S. during the 2018-2019 school year contributed to $41 billion in economic value and supported 458,290 jobs. See the full news story here. This announcement by ICE continues the recent trend of the Trump administration making legal immigration to the United States more difficult.  The Law Offices of Scott Warmuth has been helping immigrants and international students come to the U.S. for decades.  For a free immigration consultation, call us today at 888-517-9888.[/vc_column_text][/vc_column][/vc_row]
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Happy Independence Day Weekend!

Topics: From Our Office

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[vc_row][vc_column][vc_column_text]From all of us at the Law Offices of Scott Warmuth, have a safe and physically distant 4th of July weekend!  Usually we like to warn about the dangers of the highways during the days surrounding the Independence Day holiday, but with the global pandemic still in full swing, traffic is expected to be lower than in previous years.  If you are taking a road trip this holiday weekend, please remember to wear a face mask and avoid large crowds if at all possible.  Remain vigilant on the roads, as less traffic has been offset by excessive speeding. Our offices will be closed July 3 in observance of the holiday celebrating America's independence.[/vc_column_text][/vc_column][/vc_row]