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Steven P. Shewmaker
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Steven Shewmaker’s Answers

453 total


  • How should I proceed?

    I need to ask questions of a lawyer who understands HIPAA related laws, and a little about UCMJ.

    Steven’s Answer

    Sure, many of us on Avvo give free phone consults.

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  • How can i get out early? im currently 3 years in the navy as an e-4

    i just need an answer real quick, im stressed out and i believe this organization is beyond biased.

    Steven’s Answer

    Short answer: See Legal Assistance for a consult regarding hardship discharges. They may be able to come up with some creative way to persuade the Navy to let you go early. It is legal, and that is what they are there for.

    Better Answer: Ride out your time with honorable service. Choose not to reenlist. Move on gracefully in life and join the large number of veterans who have served this country honorably.

    Wacky Answer: Light up a joint in front of the first Captain you come across. This - or equally bad conduct - will get you a less than honorable discharge that will follow you for the rest of the days you walk this Earth. Don't do that. Stick it out. You can make it to the end of your enlistment.

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  • Can my 9-11 GI Bill education benefits passed to my daughter (tuition + housing allowance) be used to reduce my child support?

    The new Post 9-11 GI Bill allows me to transfer my education benefits to my daughter. The program pays for tuition, a housing allowance and some fees. I understand that in Texas, and in many other states, a child attending college is still eligibl...

    Steven’s Answer

    You have a child support obligation for your daughter. As long as your daughter is a minor and in high school (or lower grades) you have a monthly child support obligation - every single month. If you agreed in a court order or were ordered to pay for college support (or are obligated past age 18 while she is in college) then your obligation continues.

    Can you offset your obligation with the GI Bill, assuming you transfer it to yoru daughter?

    Yes you can, if you and her mother do it by agreement. I would prefer that your court order was amended to reflect that agreement.

    Can you go to court - over the mother's objection - and have the judge give you credit for the GI Bill transfer to your daughter? Maybe. To your credit, it is money that you and only you can voluntarily transfer to yoru daughter. (The judge cannot make you do this.) The judge could allow this.

    Could this move backfire on you? Maybe. The judge could say that you and the mother still have to each cover 50% of her college expenses after the GI Bill. Since your transfer is voluntary, I doubt the judge would do this, but it is possible.

    First, figure how much GI Bill you have available to transfer from the VA. Get an estimate and show it to her mother. Estimate how much it is worth and how much you want to offset the chold support.

    I hope this helps.

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  • Is it permissible for a county sheriff department to arrest a retired military officer on child support.

    I have been arrested and charged.,even tghough I am paying through DFAS monthly

    Steven’s Answer

    Yes, it is. Stop worrying about your retired military status. It is not relevant to this. Start focusing on what you are ordered to pay in child support versus what you have paid. Hire a lawyer well versed in family law in your area.

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  • Can you get a court appointed attorney for divorce case?

    I have no money to afford an attorney. My husband has an attorney and filed for divorce against me. Can I get a court appointed attorney for my divorce? There are no issues of child custody.

    Steven’s Answer

    No. You can seek out Atlanta Legal Aid or Gwinnett Legal Aid. If you qualify, they may help you. If you have friends who are attorneys or know attorneys, you can ask for pro bono or reduced fee representation.

    Good luck

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  • How can I get an early discharge from the army?

    I've been in the army for almost 6 months. I cannot adjust to the military lifestyle. The army is not at all what I thought it would be and my job is nothing like what my recruiter explained.

    Steven’s Answer

    Welcome to the club! The military can come as a shock to the system. My first year I did a lot of hard soul searching and growing up.

    Stick it out. If it's not for you, do your time with honor and move on gracefully.

    If you have to get out, see JAG legal assistance section for advice.

    Good luck

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  • If I've violated my probation and is a violent crime how much jail time can i get?

    I have 15 years on probation. And I got arrested and wasnt paying my probation before i got arrested as well. I'm facing new charges and wanted to know how much time if have to do? 90%

    Steven’s Answer

    If it's a general condition - up to 2 years.

    If it's a special condition, up to all remaining.

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  • Is my wife automatically entitled to my military pension?

    We have been married 12 years and I recently retired from the military. We may be getting divorced and I want to know if this is an automatic entitlement for her.

    Steven’s Answer

    No no.

    1. The law of the state where you get divorced (in most cases) will decide how much (iff any) of yoru oension she receives.

    2. Becasue you are married more than 10 years overlapping 10 years of military service, she will be able to get a direct payment from the DFAS of whatever portion of your pension the court awards her (but not more than 50%).

    3. You need to consult with a local military divorce attorney, and do that very soon.

    Take care.

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  • What happens to an E7 if found cheating on his spouse with a 17 enlisted?

    Spouse is wanting to get out of marriage but fears that all benefits and child support will be taken if the E7 is found guilty of a crime and discharged from the Army.

    Steven’s Answer

    Under Art 134 UCMJ, charges could be brought, worst case is a general court martial. If the facts demonstrate sex, service discrediting aspects or evidence of undermining "good order and discipline" he could be convicted. Even worse, the rank of the girl means he has also violated Army command policy.

    If the evidence comes out, he very well could lose his career and retirement.

    You may want to consult an experienced military family law attorney and seek out a divorce.

    Many of us on Avvo give free consults. It would be a good investment of your time.

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