What exactly is a postnuptial agreement?​

Prenuptial Agreements Are Not Possible After The Wedding. However, another option through a postnuptial agreement is open for use by both spouses that agree on what conditions and provisions to place in the document. What Is A Postnuptial Agreement? A postnuptial agreement is an option that takes the place of a prenuptial, when a prenuptial is no longer permitted after a legal marriage has taken place. It is slightly different in that the goal is not to prepare for divorce, although it can be used for that purpose, but to protect the parties within the relationship to include the eventuality of death for one or both of the spouses. If there are children, the provisions included may explain custody and visitation situations. The document may also exclude certain assets from marital property. Thinking About Postnuptial Provisions Provisions that the couple may implement in a postnuptial may include child support, visitation and spousal support payments. Provided there are no unreasonable conditions and the amounts are fair, a  judge will consider them valid. Some of these provisions may exist because of support during the marriage, such as when there are children from another marriage that require monetary assistance. The specific provisions usually require certain clauses for the circumstances of the individual marriage. It is important to consider all these factors when creating the agreement to prevent certain issues and to avoid the pitfalls of default state inheritance rules. If either party dies, the provisions within the postnuptial provide a way for an inheritance to pass directly to certain individuals or to ensure that various items receive the support necessary to continue forward. Some provisions will separate marital property from personal property and permit a business to remain active when the owner dies. There are ways to pass on assets and property to others such as beneficiaries that may include step or adopted children. Conditions of the postnuptial may also keep an estate from default state probate courts by protecting assets and property. How State Law Violations Affect The Agreement If the couple uses a postnuptial agreement to protect each person and various conditions within the relationship, both parties must follow all applicable state laws. Violations of any of these could invalidate the agreement and lead to the entire document’s unenforceability within a court. A judge may determine that the provisions are invalid because they violate state laws regarding child custody or if a necessary financial disclosure was lacking. These issues may also harm both parties from a peaceful and easier transition from marriage to divorce or when one spouse dies. A lawyer may assist in ensuring that state laws are in adherence. Why Consider Getting a Postnuptial? Even though a prenuptial may protect the estate owner better than the individual marrying into the relationship, the document is generally to assist with divorce. However, the postnuptial usually provides peace of mind to both parties and provide harmony for the relationship. The document could assist with struggling issues and financial differences between  two parties, including both debts and assets that either or both spouses will accrue during the marriage. There are provisions in place for possible divorce or death, and this could ease the struggles one or both parties feel at the beginning or even in the middle of the relationship. The option to use a postnuptial rather than a prenuptial could provide the necessary peace between spouses for the worries that exist in the future and for children or outside assets and property.  Financial stability, custody arrangements, parental plans and a quick process through divorce or for inheritance are all possible through reasonable and fair provisions that remain valid with state laws.  Legal Help with the Postnuptial Agreement after the Wedding Each party usually must have a lawyer to ensure that the document has a nonmanipulated signature free of coercion. A lawyer is able to assist with advice, help gather details and explain the process. In some circumstances, the lawyer may remain as an estate planner along with filing the postnuptial copy or original document. The legal professional may also inform his or her client about relevant state laws that could interfere with the document.​

The Gray Area of Workplace Discrimination​

The Gray Area of Workplace DiscriminationBy Sidney Gold, Sidney L. Gold and Associates, P.C Sometimes discrimination in the workplace is obvious. When someone is ridiculed for their sexual preference, for example, it may be obvious because of things that are said. If a responsible, hard-working person loses their job for no apparent reason, it may because of age discrimination. However, there are other types of discrimination in the workplace that are not as easy to pinpoint. There are laws in place to protect people against discrimination in the workplace. Employers cannot legally contribute or tolerate a hostile work environment, treat classes of employees differently, or retaliate against whistleblowers. However, sometimes there is a gray area of discrimination that is harder to identify and prove. The glass ceiling is a barrier within a corporate hierarchy that prevents women and minorities from reaching upper-level positions. This can occur in the workplace in a variety of different ways. For example, in male-dominated fields, women often find themselves hitting the glass ceiling. Female workers in these industries may feel pressured to participate in male-dominated activities after work. If they do not gain the same favor with supervisors as their male counterparts while playing golf, engaging in happy hours, or otherwise fraternizing in certain gatherings, they may not receive the same recognition or opportunities. Although the example above does represent a type of discrimination, it can be a hard thing to defend. The courts only offer remedies for discrimination that directly and adversely affect the terms, conditions, or privileges of employment, such as compensation, job position changes, benefits, chances for job training and apprenticeship, and hiring and firing. Building relationships represent a very fine line and do not qualify as an offense. There are exceptions, however. These include: When certain practices functionally replace terms, conditions, and privileges of employment, such as when an employer exclusively pays for amenities for a favored workerWhen certain practices lead to more obvious discrimination, such as when a promotion is announced during an off-duty gatheringWhen there is a pattern of exclusion that is obvious enough that it creates a hostile work environment Copyright Sidney L. Gold and Associates, P.C. Link to original article: https://www.hg.org/legal-articles/the-gray-area-of-workplace-discrimination-49102

Personal Injury Law​

The Basics If you've suffered an injury, you might think that someone else is responsible for your injuries. Even though it's probably the last thing you want to do while dealing with an injury, it's best to take certain steps immediately after. One thing you can do is document the incident and injuries to strengthen your case. Documents can also be helpful when discussing your legal options with an attorney. While hiring an experienced personal injury attorney, it's good to have an idea of what's going on in your case.  What Is a Personal Injury Case? A personal injury case is a legal dispute that arises after a person suffers harm from an injury where someone else might be legally responsible for that harm. Personal injury law has mostly developed through court decisions, although many states have taken steps to summarize the development of personal injury law in their statutes. A personal injury can result in a civil lawsuit or be resolved through informal settlement negotiations. A personal injury case can also be resolved through alternative dispute resolution, a sort of middle ground between a trial and informal settlement negotiations. Examples of alternative dispute resolution are mediation and arbitration. Alternative dispute resolution involves a neutral third party – a mediator or arbitrator – to guide the negotiation discussions and sometimes even render a decision. There are also instances in which alternative dispute resolution is binding, meaning that the parties must abide by the third party's decision. Types of Injuries Injuries can happen for a variety of reasons. Sometimes someone else is at fault, sometimes you only have your self to blame, and other times it's simply an accident. If someone else is at fault for your injuries, you may have a legitimate claim for damages.There are various situations in which another person or company can be responsible for your injuries. The clearest example is when a person is injured after another person's intentional acts. Examples of intentional acts that can lead to another person's injuries are assault, battery, and slander. In most cases, the intention doesn't need to be to harm someone. Instead, the person must simply have the intention to perform a particular act. For example, if someone pulls the chair out from under another person, and the victim falls and breaks his or her arm, the actor could be held liable for the victim's injuries. Although the person probably didn't intend for the victim to break his or her arm, the person did intend to pull the chair out from under the victim. A person can also be held responsible for another person's injuries if he or she acted in a negligent manner. Such examples of negligence are a duty, breach, causation, and damages. Negligence is a common claim for injuries resulting from car accidents.There are several other causes for injuries that could result in a valid legal claim. Injuries that result from medical malpractice or a prescription drug could be a reason for a personal injury lawsuit. Even food poisoning could result in a civil lawsuit for damages. Hiring a Personal Injury Lawyer If you or someone you love has suffered an injury that you believe is the fault of another person or company, you may want to contact a local personal injury attorney to discuss your legal options. It's important to remember that each state has a time limit for when a personal injury lawsuit can be filed. For this reason, it's important to contact a personal injury attorney as soon as possible after being injured.​

Workers' Comp...When to settle?​

The decision to settle your workers' compensation can be a difficult when when the circumstances of a particular situation are complicated.   Agreeing to a settlement presented to you by your employer or their insurance company is not necessary, but it's worth it to consider if it is in your best interest. Consulting an experienced work injury lawyer before making any major decisions in regards to your workers’ compensation benefits is a must. He or she can help you consider the benefits and drawbacks to receiving a settlement before signing an agreement. Consider that once a judge approves your settlement, you may not be able to reopen your case or request additional benefits at any point thereafter. Workers’ compensation settlements must be approved by a workers’ compensation judge. The settlement is finalized during a hearing at which you will present the agreement and give testimony. If the judge feels it is fair and reasonable, he or she will approve the settlement. There are several important factors to consider when deciding whether to settle. Termination of benefits: When you agree to a settlement, you typically give up your right to receive ongoing payments in exchange for a one-time lump sum payment. But, if you spend the money all at once, you may be left without adequate compensation in the future. Future medical treatment: If you are likely to need surgery or additional medical treatment in the future, you may not want to give up your right to future payments. Consider whether the amount you would receive in the settlement will be enough to cover all your medical bills for the duration of the injury. Timing: Workers’ compensation claims may be settled as early as four months after your injury in Pennsylvania. However, it is often in a workers’ best interest to wait until they reach maximum medical improvement, so they can more accurately assess the value of the settlement. Workers’ compensation hearing: If you agree to a settlement, you avoid the often lengthy and difficult process of going to a workers’ compensation hearing. However, going to trial is always risky, and you may even end up with less than you were offered in the agreement. Once you have taken into account all of these factors, and consulted with a work injury lawyer, you should feel prepared to make the decision of when to settle your claim. ​

What women should know about pregnancy discrimination​

Unfortunately for women in today’s society, there are many obstacles in the workplace. Those with the dream of having a rewarding and challenging career while at the same time having a family, face special challenges. In the course of pregnancy, there can, of course, be many medical visits, complications, and then post-pregnancy leave. These challenges can tempt employers to simply terminate a pregnant employee rather than attempting to work with the employee or potential employee. Hiring An employer cannot refuse to hire a woman because of her pregnancy-related condition as long as she is able to perform the major functions of her job. An employer cannot refuse to hire her because of its prejudices against pregnant workers or the prejudices of co-workers, clients or customers. Pregnancy and Maternity Leave An employer may not single out pregnancy-related conditions for special procedures to determine an employee's ability to work. However, an employer may use any procedure used to screen other employees' ability to work. For example, if an employer requires its employees to submit a doctor's statement concerning their inability to work before granting leave or paying sick benefits, the employer may require employees affected by pregnancy-related conditions to submit such statements.If an employee is temporarily unable to perform her job due to pregnancy, the employer must treat her the same as any other temporarily disabled employee; for example, by providing modified tasks, alternative assignments, disability leave or leave without pay. Pregnant employees must be permitted to work as long as they are able to perform their jobs. If an employee has been absent from work as a result of a pregnancy-related condition and recovers, her employer may not require her to remain on leave until the baby's birth. An employer may not have a rule which prohibits an employee from returning to work for a predetermined length of time after childbirth.Employers must hold open a job for a pregnancy-related absence the same length of time jobs are held open for employees on sick or disability leave. Health Insurance Any health insurance provided by an employer must cover expenses for pregnancy-related conditions on the same basis as costs for other medical conditions. Health insurance for expenses arising from abortion is not required, except where the life of the mother is endangered. Pregnancy-related expenses should be reimbursed exactly as those incurred for other medical conditions, whether payment is on a fixed basis or a percentage of reasonable and customary charge basis. The amounts payable by the insurance provider can be limited only to the same extent as costs for other conditions. No additional, increased or larger deductible can be imposed. Employers must provide the same level of health benefits for females spouses of male or female employees as they do for male spouses of female or male employees. Fringe Benefits Pregnancy-related benefits cannot be limited to married employees. In an all-female workforce or job classification, benefits must be provided for pregnancy-related conditions if benefits are provided for other medical conditions. If an employer provides any benefits to workers on leave, the employer must provide the same benefits for those on leave for pregnancy-related conditions. Employees with pregnancy-related disabilities must be treated the same as other temporarily disabled employees for accrual and crediting of seniority, vacation calculation, pay increases, and temporary disability benefits. The Pregnancy Discrimination Act The United States Congress acted to remedy the issue and passed The Pregnancy Discrimination Act, this amended Title VII to make it illegal to discriminate against a woman because of pregnancy, childbirth, or a medical condition related to pregnancy or childbirth. The law also makes it illegal to retaliate against a person because the person complained about discrimination, filed a charge of discrimination, or participated in an employment discrimination investigation or lawsuit. In 1997 the Louisiana Legislature re-organized most of the employment discrimination statutes into one consolidated location at La R.S. 32:301 et. seq. This Louisiana statute mirrors the federal law fairly closely. Therefore, under both State and Federal law a victim has a remedy that can include: back pay, benefits, reinstatement, attorney’s fees, court costs, and damages.  If you feel you have been a victim of discrimination or unlawful employment practices, do not hesitate. Many companies have teams of lawyers looking out for their interests, you need the experienced and dedicated team of paralegals, attorneys, and investigators, to assist you. The sooner you get a lawyer involved on your behalf the better your chances of a positive outcome.​

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