Don’t Deal with Insurance Companies yourself –

May 21st, 2020 by

Five tricks insurance companies use to pay you nothing 1. Pretending to be the good guy 2. Pointing the finger at another driver 3. Another cause (a stray dog, believe it or not) 4. Insisting on a recorded statement before you retain counsel 5. And the last but not least – the famous catch -22 “you started treatment late” or “you started treating the same day”. Don’t be fooled, even the simplest fender benders can end up being litigated for many months. Contact our office after an accident, to avoid unnecessary delays and for proper guidance and representation (818) 550-1111.  

US immigration agency says it might not make payroll without congressional help

May 19th, 2020 by

U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) is warning that it is being hit hard by the coronavirus pandemic and that it will soon exhaust its funding and might be unable to meet its payroll without significant help from Congress — as the number of applications from immigrants dries up.

“Given the unprecedented nature of the global pandemic, there is no historical data that can be used to project the scope and duration of COVID-19’s impact on USCIS’ revenue,” said the email to staff by Deputy Director for Policy Joseph Edlow, a copy of which was obtained by Fox News. “USCIS will exhaust its funding this summer, and without congressional intervention, we risk not being able to make payroll and will have to take drastic actions to keep the agency afloat,” he said. USCIS offices closed in March as part of the effort to stop the spread of the coronavirus, suspending in-person services at field offices and asylum offices. President Trump has also placed significant restrictions on green cards for those already in the country — which are usually handled by USCIS. Unlike other government agencies, USCIS is a fee-based agency, meaning it is primarily funded by the money coming from fees that immigrants pay to have their applications processed. But Edlow said that since the declaration of a national emergency, application and petition receipts “dropped to half their previous levels and with them, agency revenue that keeps our doors open.”Edlow said that, even with an already-planned hike in fees coming soon, USCIS is seeking $1.2 billion from Congress to address budget shortfalls for both fiscal year (FY) 2020 and the start of 2021. He said that such an ask would not add to the deficit, as it would add a 10 percent surcharge to application fees. “We will be working closely with Congress and urging them to take swift action so USCIS can continue to administer our nation’s lawful immigration system, safeguard the homeland, and protect the American people,” he wrote. When asked for comment by Fox News, a USCIS spokesperson said: “Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, USCIS has seen a dramatic decrease in revenue and is seeking a one-time emergency request for funding to ensure we can carry out our mission of administering our nation’s lawful immigration system, safeguarding its integrity, and protecting the American people. Importantly, this funding proposal protects American taxpayers by not adding to the deficit and requiring USCIS to pay the money back to the U.S. Treasury.” However, it is not clear if there is much appetite from Congress to provide such aid. A $3 trillion stimulus package passed by House Democrats on Friday — but which appears doomed in the Senate — does not include any relief for USCIS. A House Democratic aide said Congress is reviewing the USCIS bailout request. “The Administration has brought this request to Congress, and we are currently seeking more information about their proposal,”  the aide told Fox News.

341 (a) Bankruptcy meetings are being conducted by telephone – until further notice

May 15th, 2020 by
IMPORTANT NOTICE from CENTRAL DISTRICT OF California, Los Angeles Division Meeting of Creditors Telephonic Information Effective April 13, 2020, and until further notice, all section 341 meetings will be conducted by telephone only; there will be no in-person meetings. Individual call-in numbers for section 341 meetings have been assigned to each presiding trustee. Please read this Call-In Teleconference Numbers and Instructions [PDF – 30 KB] to identify the call-in number for the presiding trustee in your case and this Identification Verification [PDF – 69 KB] for important information on debtor identification procedures. Be advised that all USTP employees are teleworking during the public health emergency and all section 341 meeting rooms are closed. If you have any questions, please contact our main office number and follow the instructions to leave a voicemail message. Messages are being checked regularly throughout the business day and a staff member will get back to you as quickly as possible.

Allstate to return more than $600 million to customers amid coronavirus pandemic

April 6th, 2020 by
As the coronavirus pandemic leaves many working from home and driving less, car insurance company Allstate has announced that they will return more than $600 million back to their customers in April and May. They announced the ‘Shelter-In-Place’ program on Monday. On average, personal auto insurance customers will reportedly receive 15 percent money back based on their monthly premium in April and May.  The money will automatically be deposited back into their bank or credit card used for payment, they said. Customers can also choose to apply credits to their accounts and Allstate encourages customers to make sure their payment information is up to date. In addition to the Shelter-In-Place program, Allstate said that U.S. residents can receive the Allstate Identity Protection product free for the rest of the year when they sign up in April or May, providing them protection from identity and financial fraud.  Payment relief is also available for auto, home and powersport insurance customers facing financial challenges. They just need to request a special payment plan that delays payments for 60 days with no penalty. Finally, Allstate said that they will automatically cover customers who use their personal vehicles to deliver food, medicine, and other goods during the COVID-19 emergency period.  Standard personal auto policies typically do not include this coverage.  The additional protections will be added to policies in all states and will be in effect while a COVID-19 emergency order is in place in your state. They said that no action is required on your part.

USCIS Temporary Office Closure Extended until at least April 7

March 27th, 2020 by
On March 18, U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services temporarily suspended in-person services at its field offices, asylum offices, and Application Support Centers (ASCs) to help slow the spread of Coronavirus Disease 2019 (COVID-19). USCIS offices will reopen on April 7 unless the public closures are extended further. Employees in these offices are continuing to perform mission-essential services that do not require face-to-face contact with the public. Feel free to contact our office with any questions or concerns. We are here to help.