Author Archive

Tuesday

27

August 2013

0

COMMENTS

Is it Legal to File Bankruptcy Before Filing for Divorce?

Written by , Posted in Bankruptcy Law

Answer:

It is absolutely legal and many times cleaner to file a bankruptcy prior to engaging in divorce proceedings, especially in California. Since California is a community property state, all property belonging to either spouse which is not very clearly “separate property” becomes property of the bankruptcy estate upon the filing of a bankruptcy petition regardless of whether only one spouse files or a joint petition is filed. Often times, couples who are on the verge of a divorce or in the midst of divorce/dissolution proceedings believe that a solo bankruptcy filing has no impact on the non-filing spouse. Therefore, they do not advise the non-filing spouse of the decision to file bankruptcy and this can cause havoc with respect to community assets as well as the dissolution proceedings.

If you or your estranged spouse are considering filing bankruptcy, you need to keep the other spouse in the loop. You also need a competent bankruptcy attorney to guide your bankruptcy case. Do not rely on your family law attorney to advise you as to the impact of a bankruptcy filing. While many family law attorneys have a simple understanding of bankruptcy law, there are a small few who have the depth of understanding necessary to successfully navigate the bankruptcy code to insure you achieve a successful result in both forums.

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Tuesday

30

July 2013

0

COMMENTS

Monday

29

July 2013

0

COMMENTS

Wednesday

5

June 2013

0

COMMENTS

Question: Is The Money From A Personal Injury Settlement Taxable?

Written by , Posted in Tax Law

Answer:
Personal injury settlements are not taxable.

The majority of time that settlements are taxable is when the settlement is meant to replace income, like in an employment discrimination claim or lost profits claim for a business. If a portion of the settlement was meant to reimburse time lost from work than that portion could be taxable.

Also, if you itemize deductions and you claimed medical expenses in previous years as an itemized deduction that were later reimbursed by the settlement then that amount would be taxable. A note on damages awarded for emotional distress. These are taxable unless the emotional distress stemmed from a physical injury.

Also, punitive damages awarded as a part of the settlement are taxable as “other income”. For more information refer to IRS Publication 4345.

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Monday

3

June 2013

0

COMMENTS

Question: Is It Illegal To Go Through Someone’s Trash?

Written by , Posted in Common Law

Answer:

As a general rule, it is legally permissible to go through the trash of another person. However, there are a couple nuances worth noting. First, if the person going through the trash is a police officer or one who is acting on the behalf of a police officer, then United States Supreme Court case law is quite clear: it is legal, constitutional, and not even considered a “search.” (see California v. Greenwood, 486 US 35). The Supreme Court has consistently held that an expectation of privacy does not give rise to Fourth Amendment constitutional protection unless society is prepared to accept that expectation as objectively reasonable. Therefore, since the Court did not believe society was prepared to accept an expectation of privacy in the garbage we put out to the curb for collection as objectively reasonable, it is not unlawful for an officer or his agent to go through such trash. Second, a private citizen will not likely go to jail for simply rummaging through the trash of another person. However, if he does anything that the state he lives in finds unlawful during the course of his rummaging, he could face criminal charges, serious penalties, and even jail time.

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