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Planning Your Estate During the Coronavirus Pandemic

It's never been more important to have an estate plan in place.

The coronavirus pandemic has brought people’s priorities into sharp relief, making the possibility of mortality more acutely apparent than any other time in recent history. Because of that, consideration of estate planning is likely on the rise during a challenging time when courts are closed, and most legal proceedings are on hold. However, it is still possible to do estate planning even now, and it should not be put off if the sole reason for delay is the inability to travel to a law office and meet with an attorney. Continue reading “Planning Your Estate During the Coronavirus Pandemic”

IRS Tax Filing Deadline 2020

The Internal Revenue Service recently issued Notice 2020-18 on March 23, 2020, announcing that no 2020 federal tax returns for the tax year 2019 are required to be filed until July 15, 2020.  No tax payments in any amount are due until July 15, 2020.  Interest and penalties will only begin to run if payment is not made on or before July 15, 2020.  These rules apply across the board to individuals, trusts, estates, corporations and other non-corporate tax filers as well as those who pay self-employment tax. Continue reading “IRS Tax Filing Deadline 2020”

Families First Coronavirus Response Act

On March 18, 2020, Congress and the President enacted the Families First Coronavirus Response Act, effective as of April 2, 2020 until December 31, 2020.  The Act has multiple parts and obligates certain employers to provide additional paid sick leave and paid leave pursuant to the Family Medical Leave Act (“FMLA”) to any employees who are unable to work for reasons related to the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic.  This leave time is above and beyond employers’ existing sick leave policies. Continue reading “Families First Coronavirus Response Act”

Supreme Court Issues Ruling on “Final” Bankruptcy Orders

The United States Supreme Court recently issued a ruling on bankruptcy orders, and when, exactly, they are considered “final.” While seemingly trivial and technical, this area of ambiguity has caused significant uncertainty for those seeking bankruptcy protection in the federal courts. By its ruling, the Supreme Court has clarified the rights of parties when they can appeal a decision regarding what is known as an application for relief from the automatic stay. Continue reading “Supreme Court Issues Ruling on “Final” Bankruptcy Orders”

Federal Court of Appeals Upholds Verdict in Favor of Wal-Mart Truckers

The Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals has affirmed a ruling in favor of Wal-Mart truckers, upholding a $54.6 million verdict in their favor. The ruling pertains to a class action suit filed by the truckers, alleging they were legally entitled to compensation for various expenses related to their jobs, which Wal-Mart refused to pay. The Court of Appeals upheld the verdict from the lower court, which said that the drivers were, indeed, entitled to compensation for these expenses. Continue reading “Federal Court of Appeals Upholds Verdict in Favor of Wal-Mart Truckers”

Pier 1 Imports, Inc. Puts Forward Bankruptcy Proposal

Pier 1 Imports, Inc. has said it will close as many as 450 stores and lay off thousands of employees as part of a bankruptcy plan it has presented to investors. Pier 1 Imports, a retail chain specializing in home decorations, has had difficulty maintaining its profitability in the face of the shift from physical retail locations to online shopping. If the bankruptcy plan is accepted, it is not clear whether Pier 1 will survive. Continue reading “Pier 1 Imports, Inc. Puts Forward Bankruptcy Proposal”

What Do You Need to Incorporate?

Incorporating your business can seem like a daunting prospect for anyone who has not done it before. While it is less complicated than many people think, there are many factors that go into incorporation that need to be considered for anyone seeking to incorporate a business. Here are the most important things you need to do so you can incorporate your business venture. Continue reading “What Do You Need to Incorporate?”

New Law Set to Impact RMDs for Inherited Retirement Accounts

The “Setting Every Community Up for Retirement Enhancement Act” (a/k/a the “SECURE Act”) has passed through Congress and has been signed by President Trump, taking effect on January 1, 2020. This new law will have a significant impact on Required Minimum Distributions (RMDs) for inherited retirement accounts. Anyone who has a retirement account, or is set to receive an inherited retirement account, should be aware of these changes. Continue reading “New Law Set to Impact RMDs for Inherited Retirement Accounts”

What is a Power of Attorney?

As you grow older, it is natural for your physical and mental health to decline. While it may be manageable at first, over time it may become harder and harder to manage your own affairs, and eventually you may need to consider allowing someone else to handle things for you. It is for this reason that you should consider whether a power of attorney would be appropriate for you and your estate plan. Continue reading “What is a Power of Attorney?”

Equitable Distribution is Not Equal Distribution

During a divorce, one of the most essential steps is the equitable distribution of marital property. This means that all the money and property acquired by the couple during their marriage will be divided between the two of them. However, dividing up the property isn’t as simple as adding up the value of all the couple’s assets and dividing them in half, because equitable distribution is not the same thing as equal distribution. Continue reading “Equitable Distribution is Not Equal Distribution”