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A court in Kentucky has called for a county jailer to resign, citing several recent incidents at the jail that include what the court viewed as substandard living conditions, along with multiple escapes and overdoses.

Judge-Executive Steve Towler and county commissioners approved a resolution requesting that Boyd County Jailer Joe Burchett step down, the Independent reported Wednesday. Burchett was not present at the meeting. He is an elected official, so he can't be fired.

"The jailer shall have the custody, rule and charge of the jail in his county and must keep the jail comfortably warm, clean and free from nauseous odors," the resolution states. "There have been numerous incidents over the past several months evidencing the current Boyd County jailer's failure to adhere" to those requirements.

The incidents have created a threat to personal safety and security for county residents, Towler said.

Commissioner John Greer said he hoped that Burchett would "see the light and retire," but he noted that it is "totally his decision."

Four maximum-security prisoners escaped from the jail on Dec. 28. Two of the four inmates have been captured.

Last month, Boyd Commonwealth's Attorney Rhonda Copley announced the existence of an investigation into possible malfeasance by Burchett. Malfeasance is a misdemeanor charge. Under state law, if any elected county official is convicted of the charge, that person's office would be declared vacant.

Tom Clancy's widow wants a court to rule that the author's estate is the exclusive owner of the rights to his famous character Jack Ryan.

News media outlets report that Alexandra Clancy's lawsuit says that the author's estate should be the sole beneficiary of any posthumous books featuring the character who was first introduced in "The Hunt for Red October."

Alexandra Clancy is suing the personal representative of Clancy's estate, J.W. Thompson Webb, for allowing other entities to profit from posthumous book revenues. Clancy's first wife, Wanda King, is a partial owner of those other entities.

The lawsuit says: "Tom Clancy made Jack Ryan; and in a sense, Jack Ryan made Tom Clancy."

The lawsuit was filed in the Circuit Court in Baltimore. Tom Clancy died in 2013.

Many lawyers aren’t aware of new rules

  Elder Law  -   POSTED: 2010/07/27 10:52

Many lawyers are still unaware of the upcoming enforcement of new Medicare reporting rules, let alone versed on how to prepare clients.

And some insurers, fearful of running afoul of the rules, are engaging in practices that have delayed getting awards to plaintiffs.

New Medicare Secondary Payer reporting rules require attorneys, insurers and even plaintiffs to report any personal injury settlement, judgment or other award to the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) in cases where Medicare has rendered payment or could render future payments for care based on the injury alleged in the case. Failure to do so could result not only in CMS slapping a lien on the award for Medicare reimbursement, but also fines of up to $1,000 per day.

Due to the confusion over the rules, the government has postponed enforcement twice. Now, the reporting requirements are set to go into effect Jan. 1, 2011.

But the reporting rules apply to one-time payments made on or after Oct. 1, 2010 and ongoing-care settlements and awards made on or after Jan. 1, 2010, so lawyers who have yet to prepare for them are already behind the ball.

All of this has personal injury and elder law attorneys, insurers and clients on edge.

“The reason everyone is so scared is because as soon as you touch the money, you are on the hook,” said Christine Alsop, a partner at the Webster Groves, Mo. elder law firm Oelbaum, Brown & Alsop, where she works with plaintiffs’ and defense attorneys as well as insurers on Medicare reporting requirement issues and set-aside trust creation.

“Many times insurance companies — because of their fear about the rules — have said ‘we’re going to put Medicare’s name on the draft of the check,’” said Mark C. Joye of the Joye Law Firm, a personal injury firm in North Charleston, S.C.

Such a move creates problems that can delay the settlement process or stop it altogether, because negotiating such a payment is difficult if not impossible for the client or CMS. “That will scuttle the settlement,” Joye said.

Read full article here

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