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Please use the links to the right to check out firm news and more information relating to these specific areas of law. Happy reading and please contact us if you have any questions that we can help answer.


KellyGram – Memorial Day 2017

 

Memorial Day is observed on the last Monday of May. First referred to as Decoration Day, the holiday originated following the Civil War in 1868 and did not become federally recognized until 1971. This holiday was set aside for Americans to honor and remember those men and women who have died while serving in our country’s armed forces.

While many of us will be enjoying a long weekend in the mountains or at the beach, picnics or sporting events, and time with friends and family, let us not forget that this country remains free through the grace of God and the sacrifice of many men and women who have given their lives for our safety and security.

The National Moment of Remembrance Resolution was passed in December 2000 and asks that at 3 PM local time all Americans “voluntarily and informally observe in their own way a Moment of Remembrance and respect, pausing from whatever they are doing for a moment of silence or listening to Taps”. I hope everyone will join in this act of commemoration to remember the true meaning of Memorial Day.

Happy Memorial Day, and may God continue to bless the United States of America and its citizens!


Have a wonderful weekend and be safe!

 

Mike Kelly

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Heroes

Paul Swearingen

I am a big movie fan. Watching a movie is a great way to let your mind relax for a couple of hours. When I was a kid, I enjoyed reading comic books, particularly those involving the adventures of superheroes. So it naturally follows that I get excited every time a new movie comes out featuring my favorite childhood superheroes. Judging by the incredible box office numbers these films generate, I am not the only one. Do you ever wonder why these movies are so incredibly popular?

Take a look at the list of the highest grossing movies of all time. Almost all of the movies on the list have storylines that involve heroes of some sort. As much as we look up to and admire heroes as children, it is not just children who make these movies so popular. These movies are enjoyed just as much by adults. I think that the reason these movies are so popular is that we all need to believe in heroes.

Some of the biggest and most popular news stories involve ordinary people doing extraordinary things in difficult circumstances. These people would probably not consider themselves heroes, but we give them that title, because having real heroes makes the world a better place. So they make the rounds on talk shows, then we write books about them, and make movies about them, because we need our heroes!

But does your life have to be made into a book or a movie in order for you to be considered a hero? According to Webster’s Dictionary, a hero can be defined as a person who is “admired for his achievements and noble qualities” or “one who shows great courage.” Don’t we all know someone in our lives who fits these definitions?

There are thousands of men and women who have put themselves in harm’s way in order to protect us and our freedoms, in the military and law enforcement. There are teachers and coaches who have gone above and beyond to get the best out of us, seeing the potential that we may not have seen in ourselves. There are parents who work tirelessly, and sometimes thanklessly, in order to provide for their family. There are those who use their skills and their talents to fight for those who are not able to fight for themselves. There are those who display courage and strength in the face of life threatening illness. The world is filled with heroes who will never be recognized on a movie screen.

Who are the real heroes in your life? Do they know how much of an impact they have had on you? As we approach Memorial Day, a day to remember our fallen heroes, I encourage you to acknowledge your heroes. Let them know how much they mean, and strive to be a hero to others!


KellyGram – Congratulations, Lisa Cotten!

 

Lisa Cotten began working at the Mike Kelly Law Group in 2007 and is primarily focused on social security, worker’s compensation, and personal injury claims. She received her Bachelor of Arts in Political Science and Juris Doctorate from the University of South Carolina.

Lisa is a blessing to the Mike Kelly Law Group and the clients she serves. She is often called “the voice of reason” around the MKLG office. She is also an outstanding wife and mother. The love of her life is her son, Myles, who is gifted both academically and athletically.

Lisa has been a hard worker her entire life and her accomplishments extend well beyond the workplace. She serves with distinction on several committees of the South Carolina Bar and is active in her community. Her latest recognition comes in her appointment to the Richland County Recreation Board of Commissioners. For those of you who keep up with Richland County’s current affairs, the Richland County Recreation Committee has been under fire and the subject of litigation.

Our governor and legislative delegation have wisely intervened in an effort to restore the agency’s credibility and accountability. Lisa is the perfect person to assist in restructuring the recreation commission so it can better serve the citizens of Richland County. Again, congratulations, Lisa, and we know you’ll do a great job!


Have a great weekend!

 

Mike Kelly

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KellyGram – In Admiration of Mothers

 

At the Mike Kelly Law Group, I have the privilege of being surrounded by some of the most dedicated and compassionate mothers. They love their children, spouses, and families, and they do a pretty good job of taking care of me as well! Although fathers are equally important in our upbringing, there is something special about the love a mother has for her child.

My mother, Helena Crawford Kelly, was born in 1921 in the back of a grocery store outside of Washington, North Carolina. Her mother was a widow raising my mom and her brother (my Uncle Joe). She worked sixty hours per week in the textile mills. My mother followed suit and, after a brief stint in the textile mill, became a bookkeeper for an oil company until my sister and I were born. She then devoted 100% of her time to being the world’s best mother. Although she could be stern at times, she showed a level of love and compassion I have yet to see, since. She peacefully passed away in 2006 at the age of 85. I miss her every day. Happy Mother’s Day, Mom!


Have a great weekend!

 

Mike Kelly

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Social Security Disability Law: It’s Not About The Money

Lisa Long Cotten

I often tell people that Social Security Disability is one of the most rewarding legal practice areas. I was reminded of that when I received a fully favorable decision on a gentleman who became disabled as the result of a violent crime. Mr. M, as we will call him, was walking home from work one day when he was attacked and robbed by several thugs. Mr. M was found lying on the ground unresponsive. He was transported to the emergency room via EMS where he remained for over a month. Mr. M’s status was so dire that he had to be resuscitated and placed on a ventilator. During his hospitalization, Mr. M had to have a sitter with him at all times due to suspected symptoms from the concussion. He improved with treatment and was discharged from the hospital as stable; however, he was left with permanent severe impairments due to his head trauma. Unfortunately, no suspects were ever arrested and charged in the crime.

At his initial application and reconsideration, the Social Security Administration found that he could not return to his past work, but there were other jobs that existed in significant numbers in the national economy that he could perform. Eventually a hearing was held before an administrative law judge in the Columbia hearing office. Based upon the medical evidence and Mr. M’s testimony, the judge found that Mr. M was disabled as of the date of his assault. No amount of money could ever replace what was taken from him on the day of the assault, but I take great pride in knowing that I had a hand in helping this deserving client. It took two years and several appeals, but Mr. M is finally receiving much needed benefits.

If you have been denied benefits that you believe you are entitled to or have questions about the process, please feel free to contact us at the Mike Kelly Law Group at 1-803-726-0123 or 1-866-692-0123. You can also contact the Social Security Administration at www.socialsecurity.gov or toll-free at 1-800-772-1213 to make an application.

 


KellyGram – Graduation 2017

 

As we approach the end of this academic year, the Mike Kelly Law Group would like to salute the graduates of all Midlands area schools, from kindergarten through college. Graduation is a milestone event which provides students with a sense of pride in their hard-earned accomplishments. The graduation ceremony is a celebration of the graduates’ preparedness to use their newfound diplomas and embark on future learning endeavors, whether that be through additional schooling or a career path. I have a fond memory of each one of my graduations even though they occurred a long time ago!

Graduation is for students both young and old! I recently represented a sixty-year-old female who withdrew from school in the eighth grade to start working. After forty years, she decided to earn her high school diploma online, which required diligent work and was no easy task. Now that is impressive! The Mike Kelly Law Group is proud of all our graduates and wish them all great success in their future and Godspeed.


Have a great weekend!

 

Mike Kelly

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KellyGram – Nothing to do in Columbia?

 

Why do people say there is nothing to do in Columbia? I have commented on this before and having lived in this town since I was eighteen years old, I am always stunned and amazed by the number of fun, social activities Columbia offers every single day and night!

For example, last night, the Colonial Life Arena hosted this weekend’s first Disney on Ice performance, The South Carolina State Museum held Sweet & Savory (a local chefs’ competition), and the Township Auditorium hosted a live jazz concert! Last weekend, the South Carolina Philharmonic held a concert and, of course, my son, Patrick, directed the play “Hand to God”, at the Trustus Theatre!

If you are looking for something to do tonight, you might want to check out the Palmetto Chamber Orchestra at Katie and Irwin Kahn JCC or the wine tasting event at the Riverbanks Zoo and Garden.

On Saturday, South Carolina State Fairgrounds will host the Annual South Carolina Food Truck and Craft Beer Festival and the Smithsonian exhibit “Beyond Bollywood” opens at the South Carolina State Museum. There will also be a “Touch a Truck” event located at the South Carolina State Farmers Market where children can touch and explore firetrucks, bulldozers, military vehicles, and much more!

Lastly, this Sunday, the Ebenezer Lutheran Church will host a BBQ and Blues event with live food and music and the Museum of Art will be holding the Greater Columbia Record Fair, with record vendors bringing all the best vinyl to Columbia!

Let’s not forget the ongoing events like Soda City on Main Street and the daily South Carolina State House Tours! The list is endless, so never let it be said that there’s nothing to do in Columbia!


Have a great (and busy) weekend!

 

Mike Kelly

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KellyGram – National Social Security Month

 

As most people know, I’ve been handling Social Security Disability claims (and every now and then a retirement claim) for almost forty years. April is National Social Security Month, the month in which we celebrate the creation and continuing existence of Social Security. The Social Security program is a life-saving safety net for many millions of Americans. Next month, it will take on a new significance for me because, as of May, I will be a first time, card-carrying Medicare recipient.

I always say one of the best benefits of the Social Security program is being a recipient of a Medicare or Medicaid card. Medicaid, as it currently exists (who knows what will happen down the road), is a wonderful insurance program for those who are beneficiaries. Without it, many South Carolinians, and many Americans, would have no access to healthcare whatsoever. On a more personal note, I am faced with making a very important decision, as I’m sure many of my peers are, and that is, when I will begin to draw my Social Security retirement benefits. After checking with the professionals, I am planning to wait until age seventy, if possible, to draw the benefits that I have paid for over a lengthy career.

My staff and I at the Mike Kelly Law Group represent claimants who need help appealing denied applications for Social Security Disability Benefits. Our experienced attorneys are very successful at recovering benefits and expediting this process for our clients. We care about our clients and stay true to our statement: We’re here for the people of South Carolina, with offices in Columbia, Myrtle Beach and Winnsboro.


Have a great weekend!

 

Mike Kelly

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KellyGram – It’s Friday but Sunday is coming…..

 

As we are deep into the holy week, with Good Friday being one of the most solemn days in Christian life, I am reminded of a sermon given by Dr. Marshall Edwards, who pastored at The First Baptist Church of Columbia and later at St. Andrews Baptist Church. He was a friend and I admired him greatly, as a person and as a preacher. His sermon, “It’s Friday but Sunday is coming…”, gave a detailed account of the darkness, gloom and utter despair of the events of that Good Friday, to the resurrection of Jesus Christ on Sunday. In all our lives, sometimes the darkest moments are followed by new beginnings.

The Mike Kelly Law Group will be closed today in observance of Good Friday, as is our tradition, but we will be back at work on Monday after the resurrection story has been celebrated to the highest!


Have a Blessed Easter Weekend!

 

Mike Kelly

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KellyGram – National Championships

 

For South Carolina athletes, 2016-17 has been remarkable in terms of showing their excellence on the national stage. For starters, the Coastal Carolina Chanticleers won their first ever national college baseball championship. For a relatively young school of a smaller size to achieve this lofty rank was incredible! This was followed by the NCAA Football Championship being won by the Clemson Tigers. More recently, the outstanding achievement of the University of South Carolina’s men’s and women’s basketball teams making it to their respective final fours, with the women’s team claiming victory in the finals, making the Lady Gamecocks, the well-deserved NCAA WBB National Champions!

Topping it all off, from the world of golf, Irmo’s own Dustin Johnson winning six times in the last eighteen tournaments, most recently, the World Golf Championships. This week, due to injury, he has withdrawn from the Masters Tournament held 60 miles down the road from us, in Augusta, Georgia. Without a doubt; Dustin was a favorite of many to win the Masters this year. I have full confidence that a Masters win is imminent in this promising young champion’s future!

Excellence in athletics and academics are a hallmark of our state institutions. We, at the Mike Kelly Law Group, strive for excellence as we serve the legal needs of our clients and the people of South Carolina.


Have a great weekend!

 

Mike Kelly

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