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Why Choose Divorce Mediation over Divorce Court?

For most divorce cases, divorce mediation can usually be the best way to resolve disputes amicably and out of court.  Here are several reasons why. Time and Scheduling Court sessions can be lengthy and time consuming, but the judge may only listen to what you have to say for sometimes less than 5 minutes and you may get only a few minutes to argue your position. Divorce mediation, on the other hand,... 

What is the Difference Between “Temporary” & “Permanent” Spousal Support?

California law makes a distinction between “short-term” and “long-term” marriages in determining the duration of spousal support payments and the jurisdiction of the court to award spousal support. For marriages less than 10 years in duration, California law and case law precedent maintains that the spouse obligated to pay spousal support is obligated to do so for one-half the length of the... 

Judge rules some Jones Act plaintiffs may seek punitive damages

A federal judge in Pennsylvania who has overseen a sprawling, multidistrict litigation has made an important ruling on whether Jones Act plaintiffs can seek punitive damages. Merchant marine workers and their survivors are suing ship owners, alleging that exposure to ship-born asbestos scarred their lungs and/or contributed to their deaths. They are suing under the Jones Act and the Death on the High... 

Stagnant Immigration Reform Costs Arkansas Agricultural Industry $320 Million

Arkansas presents an example of the strained availability of laborers for the agricultural industry across the nation. The 2014 farm sector is struggling. This is the fifth or sixth year in a row in which laborers are scarce, even with weak crops from erratic weather and growing conditions. Over the years, average crops have also diminished in size in response to a shrinking labor pool of immigrants.... 

Seniors may qualify for Medicaid by spending down assets safely

Federal law dictates that only someone below a benchmark level of assets can qualify for Medicaid, beyond which it is determined that the individual does not have the assets to pay for his or her own care. Many seniors who apply do not receive Medicaid because their asset level is too high to qualify. In order to qualify for Medicaid, it is sometimes prudent to “spend down” assets in order to... 

5 Ways to Minimize Involvement of Kids in Your Divorce

The constant screaming and shouting at each other in front of your little ones will impact them negatively. Your children, no matter what their age, will not be keen on seeing their parents hurling insults at each other. Children are affected by divorce and continuous bickering doesn’t help lessen their concern and worry. Some children cut themselves off from the world or rebel if the situation with... 

Are There Tax Implications When Selling The Marital Residence?

Under current Federal tax law, if you have lived in the same house for two of the last 5 years as your principal residence, individuals are exempt from capital gains taxes of up to $250,000 in taxable profits on the sale of your house, and $500,000 in taxable profits for married couples. For any profits above these amounts, capital gains taxes are assessed of 20% would be assessed, which married couples... 

Be Aware In Crosswalks

I was really ticked off yesterday. As I was driving home, I was approaching a crosswalk.  Normally, there isn’t anyone at the crosswalk, but yesterday someone was there waiting to cross (actually, one of my daughter’s dance teammates crossing to go to her dance studio). I stopped so that she could cross the street, and no less than eight vehicles went around me on the right, driving in... 

Gilfix discusses Medi-Cal planning in the San Francisco Chronicle

In the August 24, 2014 issue of the San Francisco Chronicle, reporter Kathleen Pender wrote about Medi-Cal reimbursement or “estate claims” that are imposed on a person’s estate if they receive Medi-Cal and after they pass. The article makes the point that the state could seek “an unlimited amount” from an individual’s estate when “Medi-Cal pays all the person’s health care costs.”... 

Even Wealthy Retirees Rely on Income from Social Security and Pensions

A study from Vanguard, a leading provider of Individual Retirement Accounts (IRAs) and 401(k)s, concluded that even retirees with significant retirement savings rely more on Social Security and traditional pensions than on tax-deferred retirement accounts for their retirement income. Researchers studied the wealth and income of 2,600 older households with $100,000 or more in retirement savings. Even... 
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