McDonald Pierangeli Macfarlane, PLLC

Grand Rapids, Michigan Legal Blog

How SSDI can help those with mental illness

When many people think of disability coverage from Social Security, they think of someone who cannot work due to a physical injury or impairment. However, SSDI also covers many people whose ability to work is affected by mental illness. SSA looks at both physical and mental health when evaluating a claim.

Below are some of the most frequently asked questions about SSDI coverage and mental illness.

How Might The SafeSport Policies Impact You And Your Barn?

The Equine World is closely watching as the new SafeSport Policies (hereinafter "The Policy") are being implemented. Many coaches and participants wonder what impact these new policies will have on trainer/rider relationships; or relationships between any adult member of the USEF and members under the age of 18. Further, the Policy has a far-reaching effect on social media and "electronic communications" between adult and minor participants. Some of these changes are unclear how they will be implemented, leaving many with more questions than answers. What follows are a few considerations participants should keep in mind as the new Policy is implemented.

Equine Law: Buy/Sell Agreements, Protecting Your Horse As An Investment

We all enter into contracts on a regular basis and have become complacent and often unaware to these binding agreements becoming an all-encompassing part of our lives. We would never dream of buying a house or a car without a contract; nor would we purchase a boat, motorcycle or even household appliances without some form of written document. Even services as simple as cell phones or cable television are subject to pages and pages of contractual agreements designed to give the provider and consumer protection if the deal goes sour. So why haven't buy/sell agreements become as pervasive in the Equine world?

No-Fault Reform, Reformed

Changes have been made to the Michigan No-Fault law, again. Less than a week after sweeping changes were signed into law, a problem was found; insurance rates were going up, the exact opposite that was promised by lawmakers in Lansing.

To understand why this is happening, the basic function of our No-Fault insurance system must be understood. Each Michigan motorist is required to have two basic forms of insurance - insurance that provides benefits to the policy holder (including resident relatives) and coverage that protects against liability. The portion of coverage that provides benefits to the policy holder is called Personal Injury Protection Benefits (PIP). These benefits do just what the name implies; they provide benefits where the policy holder requires medical treatment after a crash.

What Michigan Motorists Should Know About No-Fault Reform

The Michigan Legislature has found common ground on a potential solution to high car insurance rates which have plagued Michigan motorists for years. In just the last few days, the Governor has signed the proposed bill, making it the law of the land. As with many reforms and compromises, uncertainties surround the legislative "repair" to an act has been untouched since 1973.

Politicians boast this law will lower rates, but many skeptics question the math. What follows is a review of some of the major changes to the law and how these changes may impact motorists and insurers alike.

What you need to know about Michigan retail fraud

Most of us have heard of shoplifting. However, shoplifting is just one of several charges that fall under Michigan’s “retail fraud” umbrella. Today, we cover important considerations about this charge and its potential consequences.

Frequently asked questions about Michigan marijuana laws

In December 2018, Michigan legalized the recreational use of marijuana for adults over the age of 21 with The Michigan Regulation and Taxation of Marijuana Act (MRTMA), often referred to as Proposal 1. However, some acts relating to marijuana remain illegal.

As everyone becomes accustomed to the new laws, here are some frequently asked questions about the impact of Michigan’s new marijuana rules:

New estimates increase lifespan for Disability Insurance fund

The 2019 annual report on the health of the Federal Old-Age and Survivors Insurance Fund (OASI) and the Social Security Disability Insurance Fund (DI) provided optimistic results last week.

Every year, the Board of Trustees of the OASI and DI funds provides Congress with a report on the income and costs of the two funds. The OASI and DI programs provide monthly benefits to retired workers, survivors of deceased workers, and disabled workers – as well as their families.

Top 3 reasons the SSA might deny your claim

On average, roughly two thirds of all Social Security disability claims filed in a year are denied.  Many claims that should be approved are denied, while many other claims are denied because of procedural reasons.

Here are the top three reasons for denial of a Social Security Disability claim:

No marijuana limit: What could it mean for OWIs?

Recreational marijuana has only been legal in Michigan since December 2018. With only a few months of this new law in effect, lawmakers and law enforcement are still ironing out the details. 

One of those details is how to regulate drugged driving. Many officials hope to define a legal limit for marijuana, just like blood alcohol concentration (BAC) levels limit drunk driving. 

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