Sean Riordan’s Successful Appeal on Behalf of Nassau County Correction Officer Reported by The Chief-Leader

Sean Riordan, a partner with McIntyre, Donohue, Accardi, Salmonson, & Riordan, LLP, was interviewed by The Chief-Leader on the successful appeal of a case in which his client, a retired Nassau County correction officer, was initially denied the ability to collect disability retirement benefits.

Ronald DeMaio sustained a lower back injury after trying to break up a fight between an inmate and a fellow correction officer who was searching him for contraband. Officer DeMaio attempted to escort the inmate down a stairwell, but the inmate pulled away from him.

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National Institute of Health Reports Millions of Americans Suffer Pain Every Day

According to a recent finding based on research conducted by the National Institute of Health (NIH) in 2012, it is estimated that 25.3 million Americans suffer from chronic pain on a daily basis.  Additionally, those who suffered from such severe pain were more likely to have worse health, use health care more and suffer from more disability than those who did not experience severe pain.

The survey was conducted on a sample set of 8,781 adults and asked participants to answer questions concerning the frequency and intensity of pain that was experienced in the prior three months.  The results of the survey also found that many of those who experienced chronic pain turned to other health approaches such as yoga, massage, and meditation.

In order to qualify for Social Security Disability Insurance (SSDI), you must be able to prove that your pain is so severe that it physically or mentally impairs you.  This is determined through medical evidence that includes documented symptoms and lab tests.  Additionally, to qualify, it must be proven that the condition is expected to last twelve months or more.  Although chronic pain is not a condition in and of itself to qualify a person for SSDI, such pain may be caused by another qualifying condition.

To read more about the NIH survey, click here.

If you suffer from pain so severe that you cannot work, and have medical evidence attesting to your condition, you may be entitled to receive Social Security Disability Insurance.  Contact an attorney who is experienced in helping clients obtain the benefits they deserve.  Call The Law Offices of McIntyre, Donohue, Accardi, Salmonson, & Riordan, LLP at (866)557-7500.

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VA May Expand Benefits to Camp LeJeune Veterans and their Families

The VA is considering the expansion of the 2012 Act passed by the Obama Administration that grants benefits to veterans and their families who lived at Camp LeJeune for at least thirty days between 1953 and 1987.  Although the current Act covers 15 diseases that could result from exposure to water toxins at the base, the expansion would establish “presumptive status” for those who were exposed.  This means that veterans and their families would be able to more easily receive benefits because it will be presumed that certain illnesses are the result of the exposed veterans’ military service.

Service members and their families who lived at Camp LeJeune in North Carolina between 1953 and 1987 were exposed to a number of toxins as a result of well water tainted by industrial chemicals.  The water was discovered to have contained cancer-causing toxins in the 1980’s, leading to a shut down of the wells.

Despite many veterans seeking benefits for diseases linked to their service at the base, the VA continued to deny such claims until 2012 when the Honoring America’s Veterans and Caring for Camp Lejeune Families Act was passed to provide veterans with benefits for illnesses linked to Camp LeJeune.  The Act was spurred by the tragic death of a 9 year old who was born on the base and succumbed to a rare form of cancer.

Currently, illnesses covered under the 2012 Act include esophageal cancer, lung cancer, breast cancer, bladder cancer, kidney cancer, leukemia, multiple myeloma, myelodysplastic syndromes, renal toxicity, hepatic steatosis, female infertility, miscarriage, scleroderma, neurobehavioral effects, and non-Hodgkin’s lymphoma.  The VA will reimburse veterans and their family members for out of pocket medical expenses related to treatments of those conditions.  For more information regarding Camp LeJeune benefits, click here.

If you have suffered a workplace injury or have incurred a disability connected to your military service, you may be entitled to compensation.  Contact an experienced attorney who can advise you regarding your legal rights.  Call the disability and Workers’ Compensation attorneys at The law McIntyre, Donohue, Accardi, Salmonson & Riordan, LLP at (866)557-7500.

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New York State Comptroller Announces Decrease in Pension Contribution Rates

The New York State Comptroller recently announced that the contribution rates paid by state and local governments towards New York’s pension funds will decrease.

According to the Comptroller’s office the average rate of contribution will decrease to 18.2% for most public workers from 20.1%, the comptroller said. For police and firefighters, the employer rate will drop to 24.7% of payroll from 27.6%.

The decrease in contribution rates is expected to have immediate impact on local governments outside New York City. In New York City, pension contributions will likely remain the same thanks to the city’s separate pension system. In recent years, localities and school districts have faced increases in their pension cost burden, partly due to the projected costs from a boom in retirees. Now, however, the rate reduction announcement comes as the state’s main pension fund reached a record high of $180.7 billion.

Thus, according to State Comptroller Thomas Di Napoli, the healthy state of the fund means local taxpayers won’t have to contribute as much. This is due in part to recent investment gains, which has increased the state’s pension fund to 92.2% from 88.7%.

Though New York’s pension fund is regarded as one of the best-funded in the country, opponents question the fund’s long term outlook. Indeed, skeptics argue that the fund assets, being largely comprised of various investments, presents a high risk for a high reward.

For additional information about state pension information and how it may affect you, please visit the state comptroller’s website. Additionally, if you or a loved one have any questions regarding your workers benefits, social security, or disability benefits contact our experienced attorneys at The Law Offices of McIntyre, Donohue, Accardi, Salmonson, & Riordan, LLP. Call (866) 557-7500 for a consultation.