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COVID-19 UPDATE

At Axelrod & Associates, we face adversity daily when fighting for our clients. We want to assure our clients that during this time of adversity throughout our country, we will continue to fight for our clients and provide quality legal representation that defines Axelrod & Associates, P.A.

Please view our COVID-19 statement to learn more about the steps we are taking to continue to provide legal representation for our clients while putting health and safety first.

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Nursing Home Abuse and COVID-19 Deaths

COVID-19 deaths in nursing homes and other long-term care facilities may be the worst tragedy that is resulting from the COVID-19 pandemic. But is it nursing home abuse or neglect when your loved one is killed by COVID-19 in a nursing home?

What if it could have been prevented? At what point is a nursing home responsible for a deadly viral infection? Is it an "act of God" or a preventable tragedy caused by nursing home negligence?

Below, we'll discuss when you can sue a nursing home for abuse or negligence, whether it is a COVID-19 related death or one of the more common types of abuse that occurs in nursing homes.

If you have questions about whether your loved one's injuries were caused by nursing home negligence or if you suspect your loved one is being abused or neglected, contact the Myrtle Beach nursing home abuse attorneys at Axelrod and Associates now for a free consultation.

Are Insurers Required to Pay Claims for Business Interruption Due to COVID-19?

Is business interruption due to COVID-19 a valid insurance claim? If it is a valid insurance claim, do you also have an insurance bad faith claim when your insurance company refuses to pay?

Restaurants and small businesses are already starting to file lawsuits over unpaid claims - even when insurance policies do not exclude pandemics, epidemics, or viral outbreaks from their coverage, insurance companies are refusing to pay.

If you believe that your business has insurance coverage for business interruption or "force majeure" and your insurance company is refusing to pay, your Myrtle Beach insurance bad faith attorney on the Axelrod team can review your policy, demand payment from your insurer, and file suit if they are refusing to pay a valid claim.

SC has the Nation's Second-Highest Arrest Rate for Marijuana Possession

The most recent data from the FBI's Uniform Crime Reporting system shows that arrests in SC for marijuana possession are have steadily increased since 2010, with SC having the second-highest arrest rate for marijuana possession in 2018, the latest year for which data is available.

Even worse, Horry and other SC counties arrest black citizens for marijuana possession at a rate that is even higher than the national average. While black people nationwide are 3.64 times more likely to be arrested for marijuana possession than a white person, black citizens in Horry County, SC, are 6.8 times more likely to be arrested.

As many states are legalizing marijuana use and possession and some countries have even declared that the ability to grow and harvest the plant is a human right, why is SC jailing more and more of its citizens for simple possession?

Was Myrtle Beach Bike Week Canceled Due to COVID-19?

Was the 2020 Myrtle Beach Bike Week canceled due to COVID-19?

The Myrtle Beach area has three motorcycle rallies every year - a Harley Davidson rally in the Spring, another one in the Fall, and the Atlantic Beach Bike Fest which usually coincides with Memorial Day weekend.

Due to COVID-19 and the SC governor's "work or home" Order, the Atlantic Beach Bikefest, originally scheduled for May 22-25, has been postponed until Labor Day Weekend in September. Although county officials intended to combine the Spring and Fall Harley Davidson rallies into one event in October 2020, County Council has now approved a second Harley Davidson rally that may take place this July.

COVID-19 in the Prisons

COVID-19 is spreading quickly through state and federal prisons, and authorities are not doing enough to stop the spread of the virus.

COVID-19 in the prisons may not seem like a big deal to some - you did the crime, you do the time, right? Except:

1) No one was sentenced to negligent exposure to a life-threatening illness;

2) The government and prison authorities are responsible for the health and safety of those who are incarcerated; and

3) The unchecked spread of COVID-19 through prison and jail populations allows the continued spread of the virus through the communities where the prisons and jails are located, through arrests and releases at local jails and through staff and volunteers who have regular contact with inmates before returning to their family and community.

What can prison authorities do to prevent the spread? Test. Test everyone and test them often. Isolate all who test positive even if they are not showing symptoms.

What Happens if I Die Without a Will?

What happens if you die without a will?

Most likely there will be uncertainty, conflict, anger, and hurt feelings among your family members or others who hoped to inherit from you or to at least be left with that special something to remember you by. In short, the Ruckus happens if you die without a will...

Maybe you share Snoop Dogg's point of view - the Ruckus won't affect me after I'm gone:

"I don't give a f--- when I'm dead. What am I gonna give a f--- about?" Snoop told Business Insider. "This goin' on while I'm gone, you know?"

Snoop hopes to be reincarnated [as a butterfly], and observe the ruckus over his estate from the next life.

On the other hand, if you are like most people, if you do care about what happens to your loved ones after you are gone, and if you want to stop the Ruckus before it starts, you probably need to have a will in place.

How Do I Get the COVID-19 Stimulus Check if I am on Social Security?

For most people who have direct deposit set up for their tax returns, they have received or will receive a COVID-19 stimulus check directly in their bank account - you don't need to do anything except wait for the Treasury Department to deposit the funds.

But what if you receive social security for retirement or disability, and your income is not enough to file a tax return? Will the money be automatically deposited into your account even if you have not filed tax returns?

For some people, the COVID-19 stimulus check will be automatically deposited into their bank account even though they have not filed a tax return. For others, though, additional action will need to be taken to ensure you receive the funds - you may need to either 1) enter your information on the IRS's website or 2) file your 2019 tax returns before receiving the money.

No-Fault, No Court Divorce in SC

No-fault divorce has always been an option in SC, but now, thanks to COVID-19, a no-fault, no court divorce is also an option, at least temporarily.

In addition to the "fault" grounds for divorce in SC - adultery, habitual drunkenness or drug use, and physical abuse, you can get a divorce based on one year's continuous separation from your spouse.

A no-fault, uncontested divorce is the quickest and easiest way to get a divorce in SC, but, ordinarily, you must still wait for the court to schedule a final hearing. When you and your spouse agree on all issues like division of property, alimony, child support, custody, and visitation rights, your attorneys can prepare a settlement agreement along with the necessary forms and documentation before you go to court.

Although any settlement reached by the parties is subject to change by the court if it is manifestly unfair or if it is not in the best interest of the children, most settlement agreements in uncontested divorces are adopted by the Court in the final divorce decree. But, ordinarily, you must still schedule a divorce hearing where the court will take testimony and question the parties before signing the final divorce decree.

Under the SC Supreme Court's "Operation of the Trial Courts During the Coronavirus Emergency" Order, you can now, temporarily, obtain a no-fault, no court divorce - the court will review your filings and documentation and, if everything is in order, grant your divorce without the need for a court appearance.

Is the COVID-19 Shutdown Causing an Increase in Domestic Violence?

Media reports indicate an increase in domestic violence calls in countries around the world and in some SC counties during the COVID-19 shutdown.

Where are domestic violence incidents increasing and why? What should you do if you are charged with domestic violence during the coronavirus emergency in SC?

When Do I Need a Will?

The COVID-19 outbreak has some people asking the question, "When do I need a will?"

Odds are, you are not going to die from the current pandemic. Nevertheless, everyone should ask themselves, "when do I need a will?" Although some people have no assets to distribute or wishes they want to be honored after their death, most people do need a will of some kind.

It could be a "simple will" or it could be an extensive estate plan, depending on your needs and the needs of your family, but putting a will in place now can ensure that your possessions go where you want them to go after you pass and it can ensure that your choice as to type of funeral service and other matters is honored when you are gone.

Your probate and estate planning attorneys on the Axelrod team can help you to protect your assets for your family and ensure that your wishes are followed when the day comes. Call now at 843-353-3449 or complete our contact form to set up an initial consultation.

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Axelrod & Associates, P.A.
4701 Oleander Drive, Suite A
Myrtle Beach, SC 29577

Phone: 843-353-3449
Fax: 843.916.9311
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Rock Hill, SC 29730

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