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  • Posted on 4/15/2014 Rule #1:Staying eligible for unemployment benefits - Don’t be lazy

    If you want to stay eligible for unemployment benefits, you have to abide by the guidelines set out by Iowa Workforce Development.  Contact them every week to confirm to them that you are eligible.  Look for jobs, and let IWD know you’re looking for jobs.  Are you earning any money? Tell IWD.  Change of address?  Let them know.  And above all, you need to be able, available, and looking for work.  Take a look at this excerpt from an Iowa Workers’ Compensation Commission decision discussing an employment benefits claim:

    [Claimant] was offered but did not accept a sales job and has traveled to Mexico for two to three month visits twice since retirement. He is not actively seeking work. Gomez does not appear motivated to resume competitive, full time employment at present. His current state of unemployment is not necessarily indicative of his capacity to work.

    If you’re receiving unemployment benefits and you’re offered suitable employment, you risk losing your benefits if you don’t take the job.  And if you’re going on vacations—especially ones as long as three months—you can bet that’s not a risk so much as a guarantee.

    The unemployment benefits eligibility process is unavoidably complicated, and sometimes well-meaning people lose their benefits over elementary mistakes.  Don’t know how to stay eligible?  Need to know what “suitable employment” means?   I like to say to my clients, "Help me to help you." If we can help you call the Lombardi Law Firm to speak with attorneys Steve Lombardi and Katrina Schaefer. We can be reached at 515-222-1110 or by emailing us at sdlombardi@aol.com and katrina.schaefer8@gmail.com. We look forward to your call.

    Source. Decided October 18, 2011.

  • Posted on 4/14/2014 What if, what is wrong with you has to do with fake prescription drugs?

    Selling drugs online to doctors allows companies to bypass FDA approval process. In law school we learned never to make unproven assumptions because when you assume anything you make an ass of me (or something like that.).

    Pharma companies allegedly selling fake and unapproved cancer drugs

    Turkish drug company Ozay Pharmaceutical Co. is at the center of an FDA investigation into how counterfeit cancer drugs ended up in the hands of U.S. doctors, endangering the lives of American cancer patients.  In January, two men involved with Ozay, Ozkan Semizoglu and Sabahaddin Akman, were indicted for one count of conspiracy and three counts of smuggling illegal drugs into the U.S.  Each smuggling charge carries up to 20 years in prison and/or a fine of up to $250,000.

    It comes down to this: drug companies are powerful and cancer patients aren’t.  Drug companies are in a position to make money, and cancer patients are desperate to do anything to live.

    Ozay, based in Istanbul, bills itself as “an exporter of drugs, cosmetics and medical devices” to 70 countries.  According to the FDA, some of the drugs Ozay shipped to U.S. doctors contained mold and water, but no active ingredients.  Some other drugs Ozay shipped to the U.S. were legitimate drugs but allegedly not licensed for sale in the U.S.  Prosecutors say that Ozay agents smuggled many drug shipments into the U.S. in small parcels, and that the agents falsely declared the shipments as gifts, documents, and product samples.  The January indictments were apparently the culmination of an elaborate setup by the FDA and several international law enforcement bodies to lure Ozay agents into extradition friendly jurisdictions. 

    Doctors administer many cancer drugs to patients themselves and then seek reimbursement from insurers.  This has allowed drug companies to market directly to doctors, bypassing more typical drug distribution networks.  In 2012, the FDA investigated Winnipeg-based company Canada Drugs, which the year before had sold two batches of counterfeit Avastin, a cancer drug, to U.S. doctors.  It comes down to this: drug companies are powerful and cancer patients aren’t.  Drug companies are in a position to make money, and cancer patients are desperate to do anything to live.  When a drug company cuts corners and sells a counterfeit or unapproved medication, it might mean that the patient administered that drug is given false hope and deprived of actual treatment.  That patient could die as a result.

    The FDA keeps careful watch over suspected counterfeit drugs cases.  People can report problems with drugs or unlawful sales of drugs here and the FDA provides a guide to determine the safety of online pharmacies here, providing information to both consumers and physicians.  Fraud.org has a handy guide as well.  Patients treated with drugs administered by doctors should be comfortable communicating freely with their doctors to make sure their drugs come from a reputable source.

    Because the FDA is not in a position to regulate international drug companies directly, and because the internet makes it easy for these companies to market directly to consumers and physicians, individuals have to take responsibility for themselves and do research on the drugs they are prescribed.  If you think you’ve been administered a counterfeit drug, you need to tell your doctor as soon as possible, and consider reporting it to the FDA.

    Client Reminder: Always keep the drugs you have questions about. Do not throw the drugs away. Store them in a plastic bag in the original container. Without the drugs we have no case. So keep them!

    Be smart and help the Lombardi Law Firm to help you and your loved ones.

    I like to say to my clients, "Help me to help you."  If we can help you call the Lombardi Law Firm to speak with attorneys Steve Lombardi and Katrina Schaefer. We can be reached at 515-222-1110 or by emailing us at sdlombardi@aol.com and katrina.schaefer8@gmail.com. We look forward to your call.


  • Posted on 4/11/2014 Were you overpaid unemployment benefits? Keep track of the amount you receive so you don’t get an unpleasant surprise

    If you’re receiving unemployment insurance benefits, you should be careful to keep track of the payments you receive.  Iowa Workforce Development has reserved the right to recover any overpayment they have made to you.  They might arrange an installment plan for you to pay them back, but they might deduct it from payments you receive in the future.  If you’re overpaid by $50 or more, IWD can garnish your state tax refund or lottery prize.

    Claimant Inesia Bogan was the unlucky recipient of an overpayment in 2012 that she has to pay for nearly two years later.  She was originally found eligible for unemployment benefits, but an administrative law judge later reversed that decision.  The amount of benefits that she received between those two decisions was an overpayment of $1,302.

    On August 30th, 2012, IWD determined that Ms. Bogan’s income tax refund could be withheld to collect the overpayment.  This decision and the decision that she was ineligible for unemployment benefits were affirmed.  Because Ms. Bogan did not appeal either, both decisions became final.

    Ms. Bogan was sent three overpayment statements, two in 2012 and one in 2013, both stating that her income tax refund could be withheld to collect the overpayment.  She did not make any payments.  Ms. Bogan’s reason for not paying was that she believed that it would have been unfair for her to have to repay funds that were paid to her and which she received in good faith.

    On March 3, 2014, an Administrative Law Judge Lynette A. F. Donner decided that the law was quite clear on this issue: it doesn’t matter whether someone received an overpayment in good or bad faith, IWD has the authority to withhold overpayments of benefits.  In her decision, the Judge didn’t appear to give much weight to Ms. Bogan’s argument: there is just a statement of Ms. Bogan’s argument, a section quoting the law verbatim, and then the conclusion that under the law, Ms. Bogan’s income tax could be withheld for the overpayment. 

    There are a few possible reasons for this.  First, the law was very clear and exacting, especially when contrasted with Ms. Bogan’s argument which was basically “it’s not fair”.  Secondly, the fact that she did not appeal decisions she could have appealed, along with the fact that she apparently ignored notices telling her the overpayment might be seized, may have led the judge to believe that she lacked credibility.  Thirdly, she didn’t hire a lawyer.  A lawyer might have told her that her appeal was a waste of time and money, or might have come up with a more concrete argument for her than “it’s not fair.”

    In any case, Ms. Bogan’s ordeal provides an important lesson for anyone applying for or receiving unemployment benefits: keep track of the payments you receive, and try to ensure that you’re getting paid the right amount.  Remember that if there is a mistake and you get overpaid, you will be liable for repayment.  And if that happens to you, act quickly and respond to the notices you receive so you can clear up that debt quickly.

    I like to say to my clients, "Help me to help you."  If we can help you call the Lombardi Law Firm to speak with attorneys Steve Lombardi and Katrina Schaefer. We can be reached at 515-222-1110 or by emailing us at sdlombardi@aol.com and katrina.schaefer8@gmail.com. We look forward to your call.

Des Moines Accident Attorney Serving All of Iowa And Answering Questions About Personal Injury Accidents

Steve Lombardi
Iowa civil trial, workers' compensation and personal injury lawyer

Straight talk when you need it most.

Exploring Recent Personal Injury News From Around the State of Iowa

What's my case worth? What should I do right after the accident? Why is the case manager working against me? These are all questions we often are asked and these answers can all be found at the Iowa Injury Law Center. If you have a question that isn't answered or just want to talk to a personal injury lawyer, contact Steve. 515-222-1110 or sdlombardi@aol.com. He looks forward to speaking with you.

Personal injury law is our business and for the past 30+ years Steve Lombardi has assisted hundreds of clients with personal injury. Clients come from all over Iowa, we do travel and have handled cases in most of Iowa's 99 counties. Let us help you or at least help you get to the right attorney. Currently the worst personal injury cases come from interstate highway accidents, drunk driving collisions, rollover accidents, work related injuries, explosions, electrocutions, falls and spinal chord injuries. We've handled most every type of personal injury case in Iowa and would like to evaluate your case. So call us before you talk with the insurance adjuster.  

Free Legal Questions


We pride ourselves telling you what you need to hear not what you want to hear.

Accidents.  They happen anywhere, anytime.  You cut your finger with a knife in the kitchen.  You spill your morning cup of coffee.  You slip on a patch of ice and fall.  Accidents at home are painful and perhaps embarrassing but certainly manageable.  When they happen on the road or on the job, however, they become devastating. 

Whether you’re involved in a serious car wreck, an accident with a truck, or hurt on the job, you’ll find yourself potentially out of work and out of money.  What if you lose your eyesight or a limb?  Your bills will pile up, especially those never ending medical bills that can result in your insurance company raising rates or worse yet, refusing to cover you.

Even though you’re the victim, it seems as if nobody wants to help you and everyone who is supposed to be helping you, wants to blame you. Trying to handle the situation without professional assistance can be just as terrifying as the injury itself.  

At these times, personal injury attorney Steve Lombardi can help.  With over twenty-six years of experience representing civil trial clients in central Iowa, he knows the law and can achieve results for you.   His practice includes personal injury cases; car, truck, motorcycle, and boat accidents; major injury cases including brain damage, loss of limbs, loss of eyesight, death and surgical cases; workers’ compensation; professional malpractice; and a limited number of divorce cases in which significant and valuable property must be divided.

Lombardi Law Firm is located in West Des Moines, Iowa, and serves clients from Polk, Dallas, Madison, Warren, Clarke, Cerro Gordo, Jasper, Linn, Wapello, Clinton, Scott, Pottawattamie, Muscatine, Lee, and Johnson counties, including accidents occurring along the interstate highways I-80, I-35, I-235, and I-380.

Steve Lombardi is the kind of lawyer who cares deeply about his clients.  Just like many of his clients, he too has experienced the breakdown of the health-care system.  When he was thirteen, his father died of lung cancer.  The doctors gave his father no real help.  For two years before his father’s death, they diagnosed a pulled muscle.  Before going to law school he had never been in a lawyer’s office, because his family couldn’t afford legal services.

From those experiences, he draws a great desire to help his clients win their cases involving any type of malpractice, and serious injury, a desire to help his clients find some justice in an imperfect world.  He prides himself on always telling clients what they need to hear not just what they want to hear.

In the pursuit of justice, Steve Lombardi believes his clients are necessary partners in building the evidence that will be used in court:  active, responsive clients with some understanding of the process have the best chance of success.  He is passionate about the work he does and enjoys working closely with his clients to collect the evidence supported by the legal theory.  He believes there are no small issues in a case because every detail could turn a case in the client’s favor. 

Steve Lombardi works very hard to positively impact his clients’ lives.  And while he recognizes that not every case can be won, he just hates to lose.  Justice delayed is justice denied. You can be sure Steve Lombardi will use all of the legal tools available to fight for you, and to win your case.

This week I'm stressing highway safety.  With the cold wintry weather there have been a lot of accidents, injuries and deaths on Interstate 80, 35, 235 and all the other highways in Iowa. I've been posting on some of them.

There are snow plows and Interstate Highway Workers out there and when you see one get over to the side, giving them plenty of room, stop and let them go by or get over and stay clear of the work area. Don’t challenge them or be impatient with these workers. They have a job to do and you challenging them for the road is going to get you no where fast. So back off and let those guys do their job.


Adventure Travel

The adventure travel business is big in the United States and for that matter all over the world.  In the year 2000 the estimated worldwide revenue was $154 billion and was growing at a 20% annual growth rate.  See Adventure Travel Industry Growth Statistics, Christina Heyniger, Xola Consulting. This industry is unregulated and the certifications the guides obtain are of limited comfort because the associations regulating those guiding services have no enforcement mechanism. The release documents the adventure travel customers sign completely relieves the guiding service of any wrongdoing these Generation X "kid" guides do on the trip. I've travelled all over the world and have some observations from my experience. I invite others to join in with comments and if you write to me I'll respect your privacy, if you want me to, and will use your experiences, both good and bad to make everyone aware of the pitfalls. So come join us with Adventure Travel.

Ag-Law Farm Accidents

Iowa farm families when suffering accidental injury can count on the Lombardi Law Firm to assist them in handling their insurance claims. If you need assistance with an insurance claim give us a call. We handle accidental rollover cases, highway collisions, injuries by equipment, grain dust cases, grain bin suffocation cases, explosions, burns from explosions and electric shock, electrocutions and chemical poisonings. If your accident isn't in this list, call us to see if we can assist you. For 30 years we've helped Iowans just like you to recover fairly. Call us at 515-222-1110 or write to Attorney Lombardi at sdlombardi@aol.com

Boating Accidents

Boating safety is a major concern for those who own or operate a boat on Iowa's lakes and rivers. On this site we focus on boating safety and how boaters get themselves in "hot water" with liability. If you're hurt while on the water you should immediately contact a quallified attorney and seek legal advice about how to gather and preserve the evidence you may later need to protect your rights.

Campus and School Accidents

Going to college is an exciting time in a young adult's life. But the college life is one where freedom causes those not yet ready for responsibility to experiment with the bounds of reason leading to unique ways people are injured. Join us at Lombardi Law Firm as we catalogue the university milieu and personal injury in America.

Car and Tractor Trailer Accidents

Although tractor trailers are a vital part of the American economy, their presence on the roads presents a significant problem while car drivers fail to respect them. The accidents are often severe, resulting in spilled products, bad wrecks, and possible death. If you are injured in an accident involving a tractor trailer along the highways of central Iowa, Steve Lombardi of the Lombardi Law Firm in Des Moines can help you handle these troubling times. Call 515.222.1110 for a free consultation.

Car Damage Property Accident Lawyer

With over 30 years of Iowa property damage and personal injury accident law we provide the law experience you need to maximize your personal injury recovery in any property damage case. If you have questions about property damage here are the answers to your questions. Due in part to the number of questions we get about property damage and how to settle the property claim after an accident the Lombardi Law Firm has created this page with a list of commonly asked questions. If your suit has significant personal injury or death claims we invite you to contact us about your case, but due to the time involved in answering questions (and the fact we still have to pay the bills around here) we do not allow non-client questions for just property damage. Clients may contact us at 515-222-1110 or 800-383-0331 or sdlombardi@aol.com.

Client Trial-Deposition Preparation

Lombardi Law Firm believes in trial preparation. We don't rely on luck to win your case. Instead we prepare you from the first moment we talk with you. What we do is listen to how you talk, think and most importantly answer questions. You can be successful if you are prepared correctly. Not all attorneys take the time to properly prepare their clients. We do.

Construction Site Personal Injury Accidents

Construction Site Personal Injury Accidents - Despite attempts to improve safety at construction sites by updating the regulations about equipment and producing detailed safety information, construction sites remain one of the most dangerous workplaces. If you are injured while working on a construction site, contact personal injury attorney Steve Lombardi as soon as possible to help with getting the relief you’re owed.

Criminal Law

Criminal law in Iowa is an interesting exercise in police power and the State of Iowa flexing it's muscle to collect fines and police the state. If we can help you find the right legal counsel to defend you against criminal charges contact Attorney Steve Lombardi at sdlombardi@aol.com or 515-222-1110. 

Dog Bite Accident Lawyer

With over 30 years of Iowa personal injury accident law we provide the law experience you need to maximize your personal injury recovery in any dog bite case.

Drunk Driving Iowa Personal Injury Accidents

Drunk Driving, Alcohol and Personal Injury and Wrongful Death Accidents in Iowa

Guns & Handgun Rights

If you want to carry or (buy) acquire a handgun, rifle, or revolver and you’re running into obstacles, the Lombardi Law Firm is here to help.  Based in Polk County, Iowa, lawyers Steve Lombardi and Katrina Schaefer practice statewide and are prepared to guide you through the getting, keeping, or renewing your permit to acquire or permit to carry weapons. And if you are a gun owner and need legal help we are here to help you with your legal problems.

Here are some of the services we can provide:

  • We can help you apply for a permit to acquire.  If you don’t already have a permit to carry, then you need to get a permit to acquire if you want to get a pistol or revolver. This is a fairly simple process.
  • We can help you apply for a permit to carry.  If you want to carry a loaded firearm in public in Iowa, you need a permit to carry.   We can help you apply.  Need help becoming eligible?  We can help.  Need to know what rights your permit to carry gives you?  We can help you there too. We can also direct you to where to take the concealed or carry permit instruction course.
  • We can defend you if you’ve brought your gun somewhere you shouldn’t have.  Did you bring your gun into a business that has a policy against guns?  Are you facing a trespass charge for being ready to defend yourself?  Need to know whether your firearm needs to be concealed or whether you can carry it openly?   Come to us to and we can help you protect your gun rights.
  • We can help you if your permit has been denied, suspended or revoked.  Maybe you’ve run into trouble with the application process, or maybe you just received notice that an annual background check has placed your right to bear arms in danger.  You can appeal any decision to deny, suspend or revoke your permit to acquire or permit to carry.  And we can help.

Hip & Knee Implants

Hip and knee replacement devices have come under increasing scrutiny in the last few years, as manufacturers began to recall certain types of these implants. One type of hip implant, and perhaps the most controversial at this time, is called a metal-on-metal bearing. With knees we're starting to see Zimmer's NexGen CR-Flex Porous Femoral component product questions.

I-35 I-80 I-235 I-380 Collisions/Accidents

Interstate highways 80, 35 and 235 personal injury lawyer teams up with lawyers from Minnesota, Iowa, Oklahoma, Illinois, Texas and all other states to provide information to those injured or the families of those killed in accidents and crashes with semi-trucks, motorcycles, cars, SUV's, mini-vans and those working on the highways (State Troopers, highway workers, DOT maintenance workers and others. ) Contact any of these firms for assistance. Steve Lombardi, 1300 – 37th Street, Suite 6, West Des Moines, Iowa 50266 (515)222-1110.

Large Damage, Major-Serious Injury and Death Cases

Damage cases involing death, brain injury, traumatic head injury, spinal injuries, loss of a limb or eyesight or hearing. Most law firms shoe every horse that comes into the barn. We won't and don't. We say no to most cases. We say "yes" to large damage cases so we can focus on getting you the best result.

Motorcycle, Bike and ATV Accident Lawyer

With over 30 years of Iowa personal injury accident law we provide the law experience you need to maximize your personal injury recovery.

Lottery, Gaming and Games of Chance

Winning the Lottery is more than Just Dumb Luck. - You can’t win a lottery without turning in a ticket.

As much as you may want to think this is about fairness, it’s not; it’s about playing by the rules you agreed to when you bought a lottery ticket that is later picked as having the winning numbers.

Don’t fool yourself into thinking you won the lottery when you can’t produce the winning ticket. To win the lottery you have to do several things.

  1. Be old enough to legally play the game.
  2. Buy the winning ticket.
  3. Buy the ticket during the time period when the game is active.
  4. Possess the winning ticket. (Can be by gift or other legitimate means. Just not stolen.)
  5. Sign the winning ticket.
  6. Turn the ticket in by the deadline for validation.
  7. Actually turn the ticket into the Iowa lottery.
  8. Have the ticket be validated by the lottery’s machinery.
  9. Don’t engage in fraud or theft to possess the winning ticket.
  10. Don’t wait to turn in the winning ticket if the economy is in down market because the value of the winning prize will probably decline.

The Iowa Lottery recently had a drawing named Hot Lotto that was sold at a Des Moines convenience store with the winning number being drawn on December 29, 2010. That meant the winning number had to be turned in on or before December 29, 2011. It was, but barely.

Pedestrian Collisions Causing Injury and Death

Pedestrian accidents can have many causes. Pedestrian accidents are caused by inattentive drivers, crossing in the wrong place, listening to an iPod or other MP3 device, the weather or a whole assortment of other facts. Lombardi Law Firm explores the many facets of pedestrian accidents. Come join us. Clients may contact us at 515-222-1110 or sdlombardi@aol.com.

Professional Licensure Defense for Doctors, Dentists, Pharmacists, Nurse Practitioners and Nurses

We assist the medical, dental, pharmacist, nurses and veterinary professionals with defense in civil matters having to do with the Iowa Board of Medicine and all other licensing boards. Call for a consultation.

Property or Real Estate related Injuries leading to Serious Injury or Death

If you’re injury or death case happened (caused) on property (real estate) you need to get a qualified legal opinion that will result in a successful insurance claim and lawsuit settlement or verdict. You need a lawyer on your side that is licensed as a lawyer and licensed as a real estate broker. As a lawyer with a client, but who doesn’t practice in this area full time you need direction and a lawyer who can act as co-counsel. We handle referral work all over Iowa and pay thousands of dollars in referral fees to Iowa’s rural practice lawyers. If you’re not sure there is a case call or email Attorney Lombardi and find out; this consultation is usually free of charge. 515-222-1110 or sdlombardi@aol.com


OWI-CDL Lawyers

Without a CDL you can operate. As a truck driver in Iowa an OWI can cost you dearly. Call these OWI-CDL Lawyers for HELP.

Unemployment Benefits in Iowa

If you’re unemployed or partially unemployed and are looking for an attorney to help you get the unemployment compensation you need, the Lombardi Law Firm is here to help.  Based in Polk County, Iowa, lawyers Stephen Lombardi and Katrina Schaefer practice statewide and are prepared to guide you through the difficult process of getting unemployment insurance benefits.

Where can you find legal help with your Iowa unemployment insurance claim? The Lombardi Law Firm is here for you. Call Steve and Katrina at 515-222-1110. 

Whistleblowers / Financially Ripped Off?

Financial crime has increased in America. The amount of retirement funds saved along with government fostering a gambling mentality has creating an environment where greed seems acceptable. Working people, honest people, young adults and the elderly need to be on the lookout to save their hard earned savings and to protect their futures. Join us with the Lombardi Law Firm as we create depository of blog posts that are all about financial rip-off stories that are in the news.

Workers' Compensation

If an individual is injured while on the job, he or she is entitled to worker’s compensation to pay the medical expenses and help cover a percentage of lost pay from mandatory time off. Although the process is relatively simple, getting the full value of your claim is a time-consuming and potentially complicated issue.

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