June 7, 2024

Understanding Disabled Veteran Leave: Eligibility & Benefits

Are you a VBA-qualified disabled veteran with a veteran disability rating of 30% or higher? If so, it’s crucial to understand your rights and the benefits available to you. One such benefit is the Disabled Veteran Leave, which can provide much-needed support during recovery. If you have never heard about this option, you’ve come to the right place. This guide will help you navigate these benefits and more. What is Disabled Veteran Leave? Disabled Veteran Leave provides up to 104 hours of paid leave for federal employees with a service-connected disability rating of 30% or higher. * Note that the Disabled Veteran Leave is a separate benefit from the normal sick leave and doesn’t come in exchange for the accrual of sick time. Disabled Veteran Leave Eligibility Eligibility Criteria — To Whom Does the Disabled Veteran Leave apply? Your effective hiring date is on or after November 5, 2016 You […]
May 17, 2024

Social Security Disability Rules after Age 60 — How They Work?

When individuals reach the age of 60, especially those facing health issues or disabilities impacting their ability to work, opt for early retirement. The idea of stepping back from decades of employment, embarking on long-awaited adventures, and spending quality time with loved ones holds much more appeal than continuing in a diminished capacity at work. However, from the standpoint of benefits, opting for early retirement may not be the most advantageous approach. While the allure of early retirement is understandable, it’s advisable to be aware of the Social Security disability rules after age 60.   Get the Most of Your Social Security Benefits by Staying Employed Early retirement at 62 does sound tempting. Nevertheless, avoiding early retirement is recommended to receive the highest benefit possible. Choosing this option automatically reduces the Social Security benefits you could get based on the number of months before your full retirement age. Early retirement […]
April 30, 2024

Bluestein, Newton and Sullivan all recognized again by SC Super Lawyers in 2024

COLUMBIA, S.C. – A tradition of excellence was again recognized this year by South Carolina Super Lawyers®, as three partners at Bluestein Attorneys made the rating service’s 2024 list. They are: Marti Bluestein, who practices in the area of workers’ compensation. This is her 10th year on the list. Clarke Newton, whose practice is focused on representing plaintiffs who sustained personal injury, made the list for the second time. Previously, he had been recognized for four straight years on the service’s Rising Stars list. Allison Sullivan was recognized for her work representing plaintiffs in personal injury cases. She has been recognized by Super Lawyers since 2013. Super Lawyers is a rating service of outstanding lawyers from more than 70 practice areas who have attained a high degree of peer recognition and professional achievement. Its selection process is multi-phased and includes independent research, peer nominations and peer evaluations. The goal of […]
April 18, 2024

Sullivan named again to SC Lawyers Weekly’s Power List of personal injury attorneys

Allison Sullivan, a partner with Bluestein Attorneys, has been named to the 2024 South Carolina Power List for Personal Injury Attorneys, which was published in South Carolina Lawyers Weekly’s Feb. 21 edition. She was named to the list in 2023 as well. Power List honorees are selected by looking at a range of criteria, including whether an attorney is considered to be a subject matter authority in his or her field, well-versed in relevant case law, statutes and regulations; experienced, with a record of success in cases and/or transactions; a lawyer whom other attorneys respect and make referrals to; and a leader in the community, with a record of bar involvement and leadership. Allison fits all those criteria. Her career has been all about leveling the playing field for those who have been injured across the state of South Carolina, whether hurt at work or injured by the negligence of […]
April 18, 2024

Attorney Chris Schwartz joins Bluestein Attorneys

Attorney W. Christopher Schwartz has joined Bluestein Attorneys. He practices in the areas of personal injury, criminal defense, and construction litigation. He earned his Juris Doctor in 2023 from the University of South Carolina School of Law, where he ranked in the top third of his class. He received the Konduros Public Service Fellowship and the CALI Excellence for the Future Award in Criminal Law. He was chair of the Honor Council in his final year of law school. Before law school, he received a bachelor’s degree in political science, with a minor in philosophy, from Clemson University in 2020. He clerked for Bluestein Attorneys throughout his law school career. He drafted civil litigation motions, memoranda and proposed orders, and assisted in drafting appellate briefs. He is a member of Phi Delta Phi, Legal Honor Society, and the Humanist Law Society. “We’re very pleased to have Chris continuing with us […]
April 18, 2024

Attorney William Koontz joins Bluestein Attorneys

Attorney William Koontz has joined Bluestein Attorneys. His practice will be focused on family law, and he will also handle appellate and trial support matters.. He received his Juris Doctor in 2023 from the University of South Carolina School of Law. He attended law school after working for several years in Columbia as a paralegal. Before that, William earned a bachelor’s degree in English from Davidson College in 2012. While in law school, he clerked for Bluestein Attorneys, focusing on plaintiff’s litigation on the federal and state levels as well as appellate advocacy. He also helped with qui tam suits, COVID-19 liability actions, products liability, and workers’ compensation matters. He is a past vice president of Carolina Equality Alliance, and a member of Phi Delta Phi Legal Honor Society and the S.C. Association for Justice. “We’re proud to have William joining us,” said Bluestein Attorneys founding partner Margaret “Marti” Miles […]
April 9, 2024

Injured at Work? — Know Your Rights and Benefits in SC

Every year, thousands of South Carolinians face the unexpected challenge of a workplace injury. From the bustling floors of manufacturing plants to the quiet desks of office spaces, no one is immune to the risk. In 2022 alone, the Bureau of Labor Statistics reported a significant uptick in non-fatal workplace injuries, underscoring a concerning trend across all sectors. This rise in incidents highlights the critical importance of understanding your rights and the benefits available under South Carolina’s Workers’ Compensation Act. In recognition of World Health Day and echoing this year’s theme, “My Health, My Right,” we delve into the essential knowledge every worker in SC should have if they find themselves injured at work. Whether it’s a slip on a wet floor, a strain from heavy lifting, or the psychological toll of work-related stress, knowing what steps to take can make all the difference in securing your health, rights, and […]
March 19, 2024

Is Child Support Taxable in SC? – 3 Child Support Tax FAQs

In divorce cases falling under the broad “family law” umbrella, courts consistently prioritize the child’s well-being in their rulings. Therefore, as part of the divorce settlement, the family law court often includes a child support order. With money flowing into or out of the parents’ bank accounts, many often inquire about taxation.  This article addresses the three most common questions about child support taxation. Have you ever wondered about any of these questions as well?
February 22, 2024

Report Your Vaccine Injury in the National VAERS Database

Overall, vaccines benefit human society. They help eradicate diseases, curb the spread of infectious illnesses, and prevent death. Most vaccine administrations don’t trigger significant complications, allowing individuals and society to function smoothly. And although rare, adverse reactions do occur, sparking debates and opposition regarding vaccine safety. Those voices don’t go unheard. The government provides various platforms for the public to report post-vaccination health issues, contributing to ongoing analyses and investigations to refine vaccines. The Vaccine Adverse Event Reporting System (VAERS) is one such vaccine safety monitoring system.  In this post, we explain what vaccine injuries and the VAERS are, and what your next steps should be.