2020 End of Year Estate Planning Thoughts

2020 End of Year Estate Planning Thoughts

End Of Year: Don’t Forget To Review Your Estate Planning Documents! [REMINDER]

estate planning tax law changes assets gift tax exemptionThe end of the year is soon approaching. As with any election year and a change in presidency, there is some uncertainty as to what the near future holds in terms of estate planning and tax law changes. There are also things that should be reviewed on a regular basis regardless of the political climate.

In every calendar year, one can gift up to $15,000 to any other individual without having to file a gift tax return or use any of one’s estate tax/gift tax exemption. A married couple can gift up to $30,000. Should one wish to reduce his or her taxable estate or begin passing on wealth to the next generation, it would be wise to make gifts before the year has ended and this year’s annual exclusion is wasted.

Now is also a good time to review one’s estate planning  documents and how one’s assets are titled. Are beneficiary designation still appropriate? The SECURE Act which was recently passed has reduced the time period for non-spouses to take designations from an inherited IRA. Also, distributions are taxable on traditional IRAs but not … Read More... “2020 End of Year Estate Planning Thoughts”

If You Owe Support, You May be Denied a Passport!

If You Owe Support, You May be Denied a Passport!

What Can I Do If I Am Ineligible For A U.S. Passport Due To Unpaid Child Support?

passport denial program child supportThe Passport Denial Program  is a federal enforcement tool, codified in Ohio law, which is designed to bring obligors who are in legal default on their support obligations back into compliance.

If you owe $2,500 or more in child support, spousal support for the parent with whom the child is living, or medical support, then you will not be eligible to receive a U.S. passport and will be placed on the Passport Denial list .

What do I do if I have already applied for my passport and my passport application has been denied?

If you have already attempted to apply for a passport, you will need to make arrangements to pay your support arrears. Once you make arrangements to pay your support arrears, then the state agency in which you paid the arrears to will report to the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (“HHS”) that you have made acceptable payment arrangements.

HHS will then remove your name from their list and report this information to the U.S. Department of State (“DOS”), which is a process that may take … Read More... “If You Owe Support, You May be Denied a Passport!”

The Value and Benefits of Signing a Consent Agreement in an Ohio Domestic Violence Case

The Value and Benefits of Signing a Consent Agreement in an Ohio Domestic Violence Case

What is a Consent Agreement in a Civil Protection Order (CPO)?

consent agreement domestic violence protection orderA Consent agreement in a civil protection order occurs when the parties agree upon the terms of the protection order. If the parties are able to agree upon the terms of the protection order , then there is no need for a finding of domestic violence nor is there a place in the Consent Agreement form to include a finding of facts. In a Consent Agreement , the accused is not admitting or denying that an act of violence ever occurred. The accused is simply agreeing to follow the terms of the civil protection order. Typically, one of those terms is that the respondent agrees to stay away from the petitioner.

What are the advantages of signing a Consent Agreement?

There are many benefits to signing a Consent Agreement.

For the Respondent, signing a Consent Agreement could be extremely appealing because then the Respondent does not have to admit or deny the allegations. The Respondent can avoid having to testify and can avoid having his or her character attacked at a hearing. Further, the Respondent can have a voice as to which terms and restrictions should or should … Read More... “The Value and Benefits of Signing a Consent Agreement in an Ohio Domestic Violence Case”

Blast From The Past: What and How to Tell Your Children About Your Divorce

Blast From The Past: What and How to Tell Your Children About Your Divorce

PUBLISHER’S NOTE: What is the best way to tell children about their parents divorcing? This is a frequent question I am asked. I can’t tell you how many times over the years that I have sent clients a link to this 2010 article from Connecticut Psychotherapist Donna F. Ferber. Surely sage advice for all times!

divorce children parents

One of the most difficult things you will ever have to do as a parent is tell your children that their parents are breaking up. It is important that you shift your focus from your loss to your children’s loss. Divorce is about the dissolution  of a husband-wife relationship. It marks a change  in the parent-child relationship. Staying aware of this difference will help you effectively support your children. In talking with your children, stay focused on their feelings about this experience. If you focus on the spousal relationship, your own feelings may get in the way of good parenting.

Here are some tips for explaining the divorce to your children:

  • If possible, both parents should be present. This illustrates to the children  that you will still be able to co-parent.
  • Tell them close to the time that one of the
Read More... “Blast From The Past: What and How to Tell Your Children About Your Divorce”

5 Tips for Smart Money Management and Creating a Good Credit Score During a Divorce

5 Tips for Smart Money Management and Creating a Good Credit Score During a Divorce

How To Maintain a Good Credit Report During Divorce

Debt and Credit Issues Can Create Complicated And Stressful Times. How To Maintain A Good Credit Report During Divorce

credit report divorce lawyer credit score

Folks going through a divorce have many things on their mind. It can be a very emotional and stressful time! At some point you will inevitably need to start looking carefully at your debt and financial situation. When you are at that point, here are 5 basic tips:

Deal with Your Debt – Don’t Ignore it!

  1. Request a Free Credit Report
     

    The first step you should do is order a credit report  from at least one of the three major credit reporting agencies (Equifax, Transunion and Experian). This will list debts attached to your name, both individually and jointly with your spouse.

     

    There are 3 major credit reporting agencies Equifax, Experian and Transunion.  You may want to order a report from one or all of them. You can also obtain one free credit report per year through annualcreditreport.com .  Your divorce lawyer will want a copy anyway. Once you receive it, take time to thoroughly study it. Make sure it appears accurate. Look for errors such as credit lines

Read More... “5 Tips for Smart Money Management and Creating a Good Credit Score During a Divorce”

The Ohio Supreme Court Just Clarified the Standard for Terminating a Share Parenting Plan [LEGAL ALERT]

The Ohio Supreme Court Just Clarified the Standard for Terminating a Share Parenting Plan [LEGAL ALERT]

LEGAL ALERT: Who gets Legal Custody of a Minor Child After Termination of a Shared Parenting Plan? The Ohio Supreme Court Intervenes

ohio supreme court shared parenting planLast week, the Ohio Supreme Court was asked to resolve a conflict between Ohio appeals courts. The difficult question that the Ohio Supreme Court was faced with in Bruns v. Green was whether there must be a change in circumstance in order to designate a parent the residential parent and legal custodian of a minor child after terminating a share-parenting decree.

The Ohio Supreme Court ultimately concluded that a trial court only needs to consider the best interest of the child when deciding whether to terminate a shared parenting plan and which parent to designate as the residential and custodial parent of a minor child.

Facts of Bruns v. Green – Ohio Supreme Court

Marcus Green (“Father”) and Kayleigh Bruns (“Mother”) are the biological parents of one minor child born in 2012. When the parties ended their relationship in 2014, they entered into an Agreed Shared Parenting Plan pursuant to O.R.C. 3109.04, in which the parties agreed to joint residential and legal custody and equal parenting time. The trial court approved the Shared Parenting Plan  and incorporated … Read More... “The Ohio Supreme Court Just Clarified the Standard for Terminating a Share Parenting Plan [LEGAL ALERT]”

Donate Blood with the Red Cross to Help Those Fighting Breast Cancer!

Donate Blood with the Red Cross to Help Those Fighting Breast Cancer!

The American Red Cross Urges All Donors To Give Blood To Aid Cancer Patients Who Rely On Transfusions For Survival

red cross cancer amazon gift cardOctober is Breast Cancer Awareness Month. The Red Cross is urging all donors to give blood and platelets as a way to provide both healing and hope to patients who are fighting cancer. Patients battling cancer, and having to undergo surgery and chemotherapy, often require red blood cell or platelet transfusions. Cancer  patients need more blood than those fighting any other type of disease. In fact, they use almost 1/4 of the entire nations supply of blood.

The Red Cross is urging donors of all blood types to donate now in order to help make sure there is an ample supply for cancer patients who are relying on transfusions for survival.

Blood Donors In The Dayton Area Will Receive A $5 Amazon Gift Card From Suburban Propane; Red Cross Offering A Chance To Win $1000 Amazon Gift Card To Five Lucky Winners

In appreciation for being a donor, anyone in the Dayton area who comes in to give blood between Oct. 15 and Nov. 11, will receive a $5 Amazon gift card, courtesy of Suburban … Read More... “Donate Blood with the Red Cross to Help Those Fighting Breast Cancer!”

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