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Phillips Esq.
Phillips Esq., Attorney-at-Law
Category: Family Law
Satisfied Customers: 19137
Experience:  B.A.; M.B.A.; J.D.
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Male 56I had half of both of my feet amputated over the last

Customer Question

Male 56
I had half of both of my feet amputated over the last 2 yrs and have lost the use of my knees so I am now wheelchair bound and collecting Social Security Disability.

I am not eligible for Medicare until October 2013 and therefore have Health Insurance Premiums of $283 a month plus additional costs of close to $200 in co-pays, bandages and prescriptions.

My wife (There is no legal separation) was removed from the house by the police after attacking me with a baseball bat about 3 years ago. I tried to get them to take her to the hospital but unfortunately it was the 6th time in 8 days the police were involved with her and they had had enough. In fairness to her it is not an alcohol or drug issue, she had been treated for a chemical imbalance for years. Like a lot of people in her situation she would go off her meds and refuse to take them and then things would happen.

October of 2010 a temporary protection from abuse order was granted. I had two children in high school. The abuse order was never made permanent, it kept getting continued because of legal problems she had (Besides my issue there was a fire she started in her apartment and some disorderly conduct problems) the judge wouldn't allow her to incriminate herself until they were resolved. Finally June 2012 I dropped the pfa. During that time I never received a dime from her and the two kids never received a card, saw her at graduation or have seen her for that matter.

The no contact was on her not me. I encouraged the kids to call her until they told me to back off they had minds of their own.

Fast forward to today. The two kids are in college full time and we are barely getting by on my Disability Check between medical expenses and the amount of people sewing me because I lost my income and hers, yet I wound up with the bills. I had a conference today and naturally they want to take 40% of my disability check with no consideration of my kids in college. I was told they were emancipated. Naturally we didn't come to an agreement and I have to return June 28th for another hearing or conference with someone else.

I questioned the woman running the hearing and my wife's attorney about the fact my wife's history will tell anyone that she is not able to take care of herself. Her attorney responded that she has a doctors note but was turned down for disability. I did not have an attorney I'm not in a position to pay one.

Do I have any leg (non pun intended) to stand on. Taking 40% of $2,000 a month will cripple me. My monthly medical expenses are over 1/3 of the remaining $1,200.

Submitted: 4 years ago.
Category: Family Law
Expert:  LawTalk replied 4 years ago.
Good evening,

I'm Doug, and I'm very sorry to hear of your situation. My goal is to provide you with excellent service today. In order to give you a clear and concise answer, I will need some additional information about the circumstances, please.

1. Who is proposing taking 40% of your income, and for what? Are you talking about your general creditors?
2. What sort of a conference did you have---I'm unclear?

Customer: replied 4 years ago.

The 40% is for spousal support. She has no income.
Domestic Relations in Montgomery County, Pa.

Expert:  LawTalk replied 4 years ago.
Good evening Bill,

Thank you for the additional information, Unfortunately, I'm afraid that I cannot assist you. I will opt out and perhaps another expert can assist.

Please do not respond to this message as it will send this question back to me. You have not been charged for this brief discussion.

Thanks and good luck.

Expert:  Phillips Esq. replied 4 years ago.
Thank you for giving me the opportunity to assist you. Kindly use CONTINUE or REPLY button to ask for clarification or follow-up questions.

A different Professional here.

Your Question: Do I have any leg (non pun intended) to stand on. Taking 40% of $2,000 a month will cripple me. My monthly medical expenses are over 1/3 of the remaining $1,200.

Response: Yes, you do. They should not take 40% of your disability benefits to pay her when she has not been child support. Yes, eventhough up to 50% of disability benefits can be garnished pursuant to Section 1101 of Social Security Act (42 U.S.C. Section 1301) in all states with the exception of Puerto Rico, Virgin Islands, and Guam, also see Section 459 of Social Security Act (42 U.S.C. Section 659), which gives the authority to garnish SSDI and Retirement Benefits, they are not doing you a favor here by only reducing it by 10%. She was not and is still not paying child support. You should be given credit for the amount she should be paying for the children including her share of their college expenses. So, you should file counterclaim for child support and ask the Court to offset it from her share of your disability benefits. If the Court refuses, then you can appeal from the decision.