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Impact of Changes in Tax Law on Spousal Maintenance in Arizona

For people that signed a prenuptial agreement before getting married believing that there may be a chance that they and their spouse may divorce in the future, the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act that was signed into law on December 22, 2017 can potentially seriously affect the agreement that was reached. A major change occurred with the passage of the law stating that spousal maintenance or alimony is no longer be tax deductible after 2018 to the spouse who is paying it and will no longer need to be claimed as income by the person receiving it.

A separation agreement or a judgment of divorce must be signed within the calendar year of 2018 directing that spousal maintenance will be considered tax deductible in future years according to the new law. Prenuptial agreements can address spousal maintenance in a few different ways, some of which are:

Spousal Maintenance is Waived by Both Parties

In some prenuptial agreements both parties may consent to waive spousal maintenance altogether. If this describes your prenup, then the new law will not have an impact on you.

Spousal Maintenance is Waived Unless a specific Event Occurs

Some prenuptial agreements state that the lower earning spouse will be entitled to maintenance if there are children or if some other event happens during the course of your marriage such as a certain discrepancy in income between both spouses this new law may have an impact on you.

When Spousal Maintenance will be Awarded in a Divorce

A specific prenuptial agreement often states that spousal maintenance will be paid and also states how the amount or duration of maintenance will be determined. In such a scenario this law will definitely have an impact on you.

Read More about Tax Laws and Spousal Support…

How Does the Adoption Process Work?

Adoption refers to taking the responsibility of a child for a lifetime. Similar to legal guardianship, it requires preparation along with dedication. Most of the time, adoption turns out to be in favor of the adopted child. However, problems may arise like adjustment issues, interaction with new parents, exposure to a different and unaccustomed way of living, and sometimes even different ethnicities or culture.

To adopt a child, the adoption process and challenges must be known. Adoption preparation programs are held at different adoption agencies, hospitals, colleges, religious groups and various organizations. Getting advice from friends or relatives who have adopted children before can also prove to be helpful.

How does Adoption work?

There are several types of adoptions, each of which has a different set of rules and regulations. Foreign adoption, for example, depends upon the country of origin and the position of the child. Adoption within the United States can be domestic (with the help of an agency), independent (without the help of an agency) or through a foster care system. All these types of adoptions have different advantages and disadvantages.

Foreign Adoption

Adoption from overseas can be expensive as well as lengthy. The country of origin of the child affects the process of adoption. If the country of the child is a part of Hague Convention on Protection of Children and Cooperation in Respect of Intercountry Adoption, “Hague process” will have to be followed. This process requires you to find an adoption provider in the country of your choice through USCIS. You will have to approve yourself eligible for adopting a child. Get the child you want to adopt, complete all the paperwork and then get your adopted child legally recognized through immigration.

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Understand the Process of Going through a Divorce without Children

Filing a divorce case is different in different states. Additionally, each case shifts with the different situations including a divorce with children and a divorce without kids.

In spite of the fact that these laws differ from state to state, couples petitioning for divorce, who don’t have resources or kids, might be required to present extra paperwork with their appeal. This may incorporate money related revelations that talk about the couple’s salary and obligations. Likewise, state laws may require the couple to give waivers of administration, which verify that the couple arranged the appeal mutually.

Petition and Extra Paperwork

Some states also offer a simplified divorce process for couples without children to shorten the divorce process. For the most part, the divorcing couple can document a joint request with the court. The two parties will cooperatively sign the appeal, consenting to the disintegration of marriage. This is just for short-term marriages, and the couple may need to defer divorce settlement claims and rights to a trial. This request of will specifies that they don’t have huge resources or obligations, and clearly state that no kids were conceived or embraced amid the marriage. Furthermore, a rearranged separate request will list essential data about the couple, including their names, dates of birth, date of marriage and justification for which they are looking for the breakage of their relationship.

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Birth Injuries and Cerebral Palsy

The birth of a child is one of life’s greatest joys. When your child has birth injuries, you may also fear for your child’s future and wonder how you will provide the necessary care. Birth injuries are sometimes unavoidable, but are often the result of medical negligence during pregnancy, labor and delivery or shortly after birth. Children with birth injuries may require ongoing medical treatment and have other extensive needs. If you child was a victim of medical malpractice, you may be able to recover substantial compensation that will pay for your child’s immediate and lifelong expenses.

Cerebral Palsy

Cerebral palsy is a set of disorders caused by malformation of the brain or brain injury during pregnancy, labor and delivery, or shortly after birth. Each case of cerebral palsy is unique. The effects can range in severity, and each child experiences a unique combination of impairments and conditions. For some, the right medical treatments, therapy, equipment and support can mean living independently and with minimal health problems and pain. Others will require 24-hour supervision and assistance.

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Implications of a Disability

Americans wake up every day to face various challenges, especially those who are faced with a disability. There are many types of disabilities ranging from physical disabilities, mental disabilities, and sensory disabilities; all of which significantly impact millions of lives. A sad fact is that these disabilities can result in people becoming homeless. According to a report by disabilityscoop.com, “more than 40 percent of America’s homeless population are people with disabilities.” So, how does this happen? Consider these contributing factors:

Lack of Opportunity

In order to be able to pay your mortgage and bills you need a substantial income. For people with a disability, finding a job that allows you to work can be difficult if not impossible. Without a steady income, there isn’t a way to be able to sustain a lifestyle that allows you the pleasure of having a roof over your head and food on the table.

Another factor to consider is that many people with a disability simply do not have the means of being able to uphold a steady job. This unfortunate fact keeps their opportunity limited and prohibits any source of income from working.

Lack of Assistance

According to disabled-world.com, “programs such as SSI and SSDI are unable to keep people with disabilities from experiencing homelessness. The average annual payment to an individual on SSI for the year 2009 was $6,048, while the poverty rate of a single-person household is $10,830”. This leaves many wondering how people are supposed to come into their next meal, how they’re supposed to pay rent, how they’re to afford medicine they might require, etc.

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Things To Know About Child Custody In Arizona Divorce

According to Arizona laws, child custody in divorce cases takes the best interests of the child in consideration. Divorce is not an easy process and if you fight over issues like child custody, alimony, child support etc., it will only make matters worse. Going through a divorce with children can be one of the toughest experiences in life. You need all the strength, help and support in order to go through the process and finally put this phase of your life behind you. For that to happen, it is advised to get in touch with a qualified and experienced divorce attorney who understands the divorce process and can help you through it.

Understanding the Legal Process

When it comes to child custody in divorce cases, both parents need to come to an agreement as to who will be the primary custodial parent. They can use methods like mediation or collaboration, or simply come to a mutual decision. However, if they fail to resolve matters on their own or by getting help from dispute resolution methods, they can seek help from the Arizona state court. In most cases, it is advised to come to an understanding on your own without the court getting involved because you don’t know what the judge would do.

To help you through the process, get help from an experienced family law attorney in Arizona. The lawyer should be hired as early in the process as possible for proper guidance. The attorney will know how to protect your rights and will make sure that a fair agreement is reached between both spouses. A knowledgeable divorce attorney will fight for your rights and will take decisions that are in the best interests of your children.

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Steps You Need To Take To Begin An Arizona Divorce

The divorce process is initiated by filing a petition for dissolution of marriage in Arizona. The petition needs to be filed in Superior Court by paying a filing fee of $321. Those who cannot afford to pay the divorce petition fee can ask the court to waive or defer the payment by submitting a written application for deferral or waiver with the court. The purpose of the divorce petition is to allege certain facts about the property rights of the parties, and issues like child support, custody and spousal maintenance. Any other rights of both parties that are related to the marriage are also alleged in the petition.

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Injuries Involving the Government

Injuries more often occur between private citizens or involve businesses, than due to negligence by the government. Civilian and commercial negligence cases tend to be more straightforward than those involving government entities. When the government is a named defendant, the skill of an experienced personal injury lawyer is very important for positive outcome for this type of complex case.

Liability of the Government

Government-related accidents occur similarly to any other accident. As an example, someone walking on a poorly maintained park sidewalk is on government property and may be equally injured as someone who slips and falls inside a business. Government employees often have assigned vehicles and may be involved in an auto accident in their work vehicle. City-owned swimming pools are frequently the scene of accidents. Veterans’ hospitals may employ a doctor who committed medical malpractice on one of the veteran patients.

Such cases are different, in that individuals are not implicated as responsible for injuries suffered by victims. Instead, the government is responsible.

Immunity of the Government

In many cases involving the government, civil plaintiffs have to overcome the hurdle of government immunity. Some instances may restrict the majority of claims due to far-reaching immunity. This immunity is under the U.S. Constitution, state laws and other decisions made by higher courts. Some states have laws prohibiting victims from suing for accidents such as slip and fall injuries from residual snow or ice at public recreation facilities.

The government must agree to be sued when immunity is in place. For such cases, there is often no recourse for the plaintiff from the government defendant.

Special Relationship and State-Created Danger Doctrines

When immunity of a government entity exists but extenuating circumstances arise, the plaintiff may still be able to sue. There is a doctrine called the state-created danger doctrine which maintains a plaintiff’s right to sue the government if the entity’s action specifically placed the citizen in harm’s way and the government failed to protect that citizen despite placing him or her in this dangerous position. Another doctrine, the special relationship doctrine, holds the state responsible for taking steps to protect prisoners or others held by police while these individuals are in state custody.

Federal Tort Claims Act

When the federal government is involved in an injury through negligence by a federal employee, that employee can be sued through a federal tort. The Federal Tort Claims Act permits suits of tort against the government under specific guidelines. This provides the process for suing federal employees, but not independent contractors, who must be sued under their employer or individual names. Further, the Federal Tort Claims Act is only applicable when the employee being sued was on-the-job and performing his or her duty at the time of the injury or damages. Claims must be unintentional torts or negligence, not intentional torts. Finally, the claim must be permissible according to state laws where the incident occurred.

Statutes of Limitations in Government Claims

When suing the government, there are strict statutes of limitations that apply. A federal tort must be filed within two years following the incident of injury or damages. The federal government then has 180 days to respond to the claim and will either admit liability and offer a settlement, admit liability with no settlement or deny liability altogether. When liability is denied, the plaintiff can litigate the case in federal court with a personal injury attorney. When the government does not meet its own time restrictions of 180 days for response, the plaintiff can also proceed with a case.

Legal Assistance

When citizens believe they have suffered injury due to city, state or federal government negligence, they should consult a personal injury lawyer to discuss potential for a claim. In Arizona, Cantor Injury Lawyers handles many such cases each year. If you have been injured due to negligence by the government, call Cantor Crane now for a free, no-obligation consultation at 602.254.2701.

7 Tips for Any Parent This School Year

The school year is almost here again, and you know what that means: hectic trips to get folders and calculators, reorganizing your schedule to ensure the children get where they need to be every day, and cranky kids complaining at length about the moderate amount of schoolwork they’ll be dealing with over the next nine months.

Sounds stressful, sure, but lucky for you, thousands of parents go through this process year after year, and they’ve been doing so for a long, long time. Here are seven time-tested tips to prepare your family for the upcoming school year.

Pick Up the Essentials

Pencils, pens, folders, and notebooks. Make sure you get everything you need ahead of time. You won’t want to rush to Target at midnight for a graphing calculator the night before classes begin. Grab your school’s supply list, and get everything ahead of time.

Schedule Business

Make plans with your young scholars. Set aside time each evening for homework. A schedule will keep everyone on track, and if you’ve put a plan in place, your kids will know what to expect. Organizing business will demonstrate the importance of hard work to your kids and keep things predictable.

Schedule Fun

School is serious, but too much work makes people lose their footing. Don’t be overbearing. Make sure your schedule has time set aside every night for the family to have some fun. Nightly dinner, video game sessions, leisure reading routines, and outdoor activities will keep minds loose, happy, and sharp.

Take a Look at the Workload

If your children’s teachers are proactive enough to send out syllabuses ahead of time, take a look at them. If you know what the kids will be working on, you’ll be better equipped to help them out once they need you.

Talk to Your Kids About Drugs and Alcohol

Drugs and alcohol are a major danger on school campuses these days. Speak with your kids and warn them of the hazards associated with drugs and alcohol. Children may act too cool to hear their folks’ take on substance abuse, but deep down, they’ll be listening. Education makes a big impact.

Communicate With Your Spouse or Co-Parent

When it comes to parenting, communication is crucial. Both parents need to be on the same page. A coherent vision of your child’s well being will provide stability and focus.

For divorced or separated parents, this tip will be a little trickier. Nonetheless, parents will be more effective if they put aside their differences for the sake of the child. Charles R. Ullman & Associates reminds us good communication is the key to letting children see a healthy amount of both parents in the case of divorce.

Explore Extracurricular Activities

There are more things to a young person’s life than school. Some of those other things are better than others. If you and your children work together to put those extracurricular things together, your children are more likely to do good things. What would you prefer your kids to do: work, theater class, and sports? Or late nights at the movies with seedy older kids? Get involved.

The Merits and Demerits of Legal Practice

Pursuing a career as a lawyer has its own merits and demerits. It not only requires a huge financial investment, but it also requires a lot of time and commitment. To be able to embark on this path, one needs to be aware of all the merits and demerits of this field. Read on to know more about the top reasons why one should pursue education and career in the legal field, as well some of the drawbacks of a career in this profession.

Earning potential is Huge! – Lawyers are among the highest paid professionals, with salaries falling in the millions sometimes. Although not all lawyers will fall in that category, they do have a very high earning potential. Lawyers working with large law firms are particularly experienced as they gain years and years of knowledge in diverse areas of law over time.

Lawyers fall in the Elite circle of professionals – Being a lawyer is considered prestigious and carries a unique and glamorous image with it. Lawyers fall in the elite circle of professionals and gain respect from others, based on their success.

They are in a position to help others – Law is a profession which gives individuals the ability to help other individuals, or groups and even organizations. Just guiding someone in the right direction is enough sometimes for most clients. Some lawyers will perform pro-bono work to help low-income individuals or clients as well as help those who may have been a target of abuse, such as a child, an elderly, or a spouse.

Diverse practice areas – The legal profession has a range of niches, such as employment law, family law, real estate law, criminal law, civil litigation and more. Based on the interests and background of the individual pursuing legal studies, they can choose from any of the sub-specialties.

Apart from all these pros, lawyers also get a competitive and professional work environment which gives them even more opportunities to excel in their field. Moreover, the skills they gain in their professional career are transferable and can be applied in other walks of life as well. Lastly, the legal profession provides flexibility as well as a global influence to the individual, along with other perks.

Despite all these pros, the legal profession also has its cons. One of the biggest drawback of being a lawyer is that they have to be under huge stress most of the time. Lawyers often have to work long hours, which may give them job dissatisfaction, especially if they are not able to maintain a balance between their personal and professional life.

Moreover, since getting admitted into law school has a huge financial cost associated with it, most graduates have a soaring law school debt by the time they finish schooling. The competitive job market and peer pressure adds to the troubles. Staying up to date with the changing legal paradigms can be challenging in itself as well.

If you are considering a career in law, you must consider the above mentioned pros and cons as well as many others that are associated with them. Be sure to consult with your advisor, friends and family when making decisions related to your education and profession.


Author Bio:

Thanks to guest writer, Robert L. Bogen, the principal and owner of The Law Offices of Robert L. Bogen, P.A. The firm is a Florida based “boutique” law firm with a heavy emphasis on all matters relating to family and divorce law, criminal defense, and appellate law.

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