Moving out? Record your home on your smartphone

If you’re getting divorced and you’ll be moving out while your spouse stays in the house, it’s a good idea to use your smartphone to make a video record of the home at the time you left it.

For one thing, you might not be able to take everything that’s important to you with you at the time you move, especially if you’re going to a smaller place. And once you move out, you’ll have little control over the home’s maintenance and upkeep.

As a result, whether accidentally or on purpose, your spouse might throw out, destroy or sell belongings of yours that have significant monetary or sentimental value. Your spouse might also let the house fall into disrepair, or there might be some damage to the home, which could lower its value. [Read more…]

You’re splitting up – who keeps the engagement ring?

So it wasn’t “until death do us part” after all, but there’s still that dazzling engagement ring. He wants it back; she wants to keep it. Who wins?

As with many things in the law, it depends on the facts, and it also depends on the state.

In some states, such as California, accepting an engagement ring is usually viewed as a promise to marry someone. Once a woman has said “I do,” the promise has been fulfilled and it’s hers to keep, even if the couple later get divorced.

[Read more…]

Live-in partner is awarded partial custody of child

A mother’s live-in romantic partner who developed a strong relationship with her child can get partial custody of the child after their breakup, a Pennsylvania court recently decided.

The mother gave birth to the child in 2007 and quickly separated from the child’s father. She then began a relationship with a woman known as C.B.

C.B. became very involved in the child’s life, participating in his medical appointments, helping select his schools, and communicating with his teachers and doc- tors. The child also had a close relationship with C.B.’s extended family, referring to her father as “Pappy” and her siblings as “aunt” and “uncle.” C.B.’s family members babysat the child, and C.B.’s mother was the child’s emergency contact. [Read more…]

‘Buy-sell’ agreements should be reviewed by a family lawyer

It’s very common for small businesses to have “buy-sell” agreements. These say that if one owner leaves, dies, or gets divorced, the other owners can buy out that owner’s interest. The purpose is to make sure that if something happens to one owner, the other owners can continue to operate the  business without having an ex- spouse, child, or stranger as an unwanted partner.

If you have such an agreement or are thinking of signing one, it’s a very good idea to have it reviewed by a family law attorney. This is true if any of the owners might someday get divorced, even if you personally are unlikely to get divorced or aren’t even married.

Here’s why: Buy-sell agreements typically set a price at which the other owners can buy the owner’s shares, or a method for determining the price, such as book value, a multiple of current annual profits, an independent appraiser’s estimate, or a board valuation made in good faith.

[Read more…]

Modern love clouds end of alimony

Many divorce agreements say that a spouse can stop paying alimony if the other spouse remarries or begins living with a romantic partner. That sounds simple – but in today’s world, romantic relationships can be anything but simple. Sometimes, as on Facebook, the best way to describe a new relationship is “it’s complicated” and whether a spouse can stop paying alimony can be complicated, too.

Here are some examples:

* Steven and Lorraine Robitzski divorced in 2004, and Steven was ordered to pay Lorraine $2,500 a month in alimony, unless she cohabited with someone. Lorraine found a new boyfriend, and Steven went to court claiming that they were living together.

According to Steven, Lorraine and her new beau spent about 100 nights a year together, they held themselves out as a couple at family and social activities and on Facebook, and the couple’s children referred to the boyfriend as “Pap Thom.”

[Read more…]

My father died in Florida and had no will but his home was deeded to him only and paid for before he married my stepmother.

ADDITIONAL INFORMATION:

Do I have any rights as a son and the stepmother says she has a life estate and she says the property will go to my father’s Aires when she passes but we have never seen any paperwork to say what the situation is..

ATTORNEY ANSWER BY MARGARET L. CROSS BELIVEAU:

The surviving spouse is granted a life estate in the property in order to protect her rights. A life estate means that she has the right to use and occupy the property during her lifetime. Should she move out, she is entitled to any income generated from the property. At the same time, she has the responsibility to pay for the expenses relating to the house. She must pay the taxes, insurance, maintenance and upkeep. If she wishes to sell the property in the future, she will be entitled to a percentage of the proceeds and the remainder men will split that balance. The percentage is determined according to her age. As she gets older, the value of her ownership interest declines.
At some point a homestead determination will need to be made and a new deed executed with your mother-in-law and you and your siblings, if any.

[Read more…]

February 23, 2017 – Estate & Medicaid Planning Seminar

Date: Thursday, February 23, 2017
Time:  7:20AM – 9:00AM
Location: Chateau Restaurant, 551 John Mahar Highway (Horizon Plaza), Braintree MA

Registration: Pre-register Here

$30.00 for full buffet breakfast & 2 CPE credits for CPA’s

FREE for first-time attendees

Summary:

AT 7:20:  Your tax questions – Alan Gladstone

Stock Market Update

Mark Everett, Managing Director, Diversified Financial Management
Josh Gregory CRPS, Wealth Mgmt Advisor Individual Services TIAA-CREF

NETWORKING:  Per diem announcements, looking for work, office, etc. 

Information contact 

Millie(781) 784-7967  millie@milliecpa.com

or Irene (781) 883-3174 /  irene@milliecpa.com

 

A NH Real Estate Transfer Tax Primer

The following article by Attorney David Beliveau was published by the New Hampshire Bar Association.

Tax Law: Amended Last Year: A NH Real Estate Transfer Tax Primer

By:

The New Hampshire real estate transfer tax (NH RSA 78-B) – a tax on the transfer of New Hampshire real estate – is $0.75 per $100 of the full price of or consideration for the real estate for the purchaser and the seller (meaning half of the total tax is paid by the purchaser and half by the seller).

The tax, collected by the NH Department of Revenue Administration (DRA), requires filing DRA forms PA-34, Inventory of Property Transfer; CD-57-P, Declaration of Consideration Real Estate Purchaser (Grantee); and CD-57-S, Declaration of Consideration Real Estate Seller (Grantor). The law changed last year in the case of real estate transfers to revocable trusts and LLCs. [Read more…]

Will I be able to contest my only older sister’s will after her death–

ADDITIONAL INFORMATION:

My only sister had me listed on her deed of her home and due to a petty argument she had me removed from her deed and I feel she is being heavily influenced by her friend and she is putting her in her will–I am family verses a friend –is it possible to contest this and win this over?

ATTORNEY ANSWER BY MARGARET L. CROSS:

There are not enough facts to make an informed decision on whether you have a valid cause of action. While your sister may listen to her friend, it may or may not come to the level of undue influence. Is your sister vulnerable in some way? Has the friend isolated her? Did the friend force your sister to make her a substantial beneficiary of the estate? Is your sister elderly and easily confused. Have long were your sister and her friend close. These are all things that the court will consider. Just because you are her sister does not mean that you will win your argument. I have seen many, many estate plans where family members are not inheriting. Also, you can’t contest her will until after she dies and it will be expensive. The executor will have estate assets to defend a claim, where you will have to pay your attorney with your own money.
If you feel the friend is taking advantage of your sister, now, financially, you can report it to Elder Services, assuming she is elderly. Elder Services will hold an investigation.
er does not constitute legal advice, and should not be relied on since each situation is fact specific, and it is impossible to evaluate a legal problem without a comprehensive consultation and review of all the facts and documents at issue. This answer does not create an attorney-client relationship. A lawyer experienced in the subject area and licensed to practice in the jurisdiction should be consulted for legal advice.

Beliveau Law Group: Massachusetts | Florida | New Hampshire

The estate administration attorneys at the Beliveau Law Group provides legal services for probate, estate administration, and trust administration. The law firm has offices and attorneys in Naples, Florida; Waltham, Massachusetts; and Salem, New Hampshire.