Estate Law: Feel Like The Queens & Kings Of Your Castle


Having several estates and property can be a tricky thing to manage without help. This becomes more difficult in the case of an unexpected death. It is important to get your affairs well-planned out and organized while you are still in a good condition to manage them and it will lessen the burden on your loved ones at the time of your passing. An estate planning lawyer can sort these assets out for you and defend the rights of your children, spouse, and other beneficiary members to your estate. It is important to choose an attorney you can trust who is a licensed practitioner in this field.

Wills and Trusts

A skilled attorney will ensure that you have a legally valid will. There are conditions for a will to be valid in court including signatures and witnesses and other laws that apply to particular states. Some individuals create wills without any legal consent and more often than not, they are easily contestable in court. This causes disputes among the heirs and costly legal battles. An estate lawyer can be consulted to make changes on the will while the executor is still alive and will defend its contents once the client has passed, making sure that the beneficiaries receive their intended assets.

Sanctioning Power of Attorney

There are ways to bestow power of attorney on an individual for different and specific reasons. This is a very tricky authorization which can be easily abused. An estate planning lawyer can help you with the technicalities in bestowing power of attorney and ensure that you are giving just the right amount of authorization for the intended case and not anymore than needed. They will advise you as well on what documents you should have ready in case of an emergency.

Retirement Plan

Estate planning lawyers work alongside your financial planners and other professionals to work out the best retirement plan for their clients. It is difficult to navigate through the government benefits you are entitled to among other things. They help you put these things in order and make sense of your finances and advise you on how to handle it to your best interest.

Organizing Your Estate

Elder attorneys work alongside you to organize how your estate will be handled upon your death. Your attorney should keep extra copies of your documents as well as be aware of where you keep your insurance papers, living will, and other legal documents. Whether you want to bestow your properties to your heirs, friends, pets, charities, or other persons, they will take care of it for you.

Your local estate lawyer will be accountable for handling your estate and will defend against anyone trying to challenge your case. Your lawyer will be your legal representative when you are gone. This will give you and your loved ones assurance that everything will be handled according to your will so that all those involved can rest easily knowing that they won’t be tangled in costly legal debates and more heartache for the loss of a loved one. A good lawyer will make sure your estate is handled carefully and distributed according to your wishes, giving everyone peace of mind.

Flushing, NY 11367, USA


3 Alternatives To Filing For Bankruptcy With A Lawyer


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If ever there was a decision in your life that you should take with all the seriousness you can muster, it would whether or not to file for bankruptcy. For some people who are in seemingly hopeless debt, bankruptcy may be a good option even after considering all the serious repercussions. While filing for legal bankruptcy can reduce or even completely get rid some of your debts, your credit score will take a serious blow, making it hard to loan money in the future.

You must take note though that student loans, along with certain kinds of tax, are notoriously difficult to write off. So before you call your local bankruptcy attorney and file for Chapter 13, Chapter 12, Chapter 11, or Chapter 7 bankruptcy, here are 3 alternatives you should look into.

Debt Settlement

This is one of the most common ways to avoid filing for bankruptcy. It is especially useful for those who have accumulated a lot of debt because of credit card bills. People in deep debt due to credit cards are usually harassed by several calls and strongly worded letters from creditors who are also threatening legal action.

Debt settlement is basically negotiating for a lower amount that you and the creditors can agree on. While it is possible to do this on your own, majority of people approach debt management companies and bankruptcy lawyers to help them do this.

The problem with debt settlement is that you’ll usually need a pay a lump sum. Through debt settlement, it is possible to get the debt reduced by up to 50% of the original amount. A common piece of advice given by debt settlement companies is to tell their clients to stop payments in order to gather enough for a lump sum that can be used to negotiate a reduced settlement in exchange for an instant payment.

Word of warning: the debt settlement industry is largely unregulated so it is possible to get yourself in even more debt than before if you aren’t careful. For some people, choosing a debt lawyer is much safer as they work solely in your interest.

Judgment Proof

This is a basic alternative to bankruptcy but very few people choose this route. For people who have incurred large amounts of debt but have a very limited income or no income at all, you could be labelled as judgment proof. What this boils down to is that creditors that take you to court will find that you have no means of paying them back.

Your debt may then be written off and cleared as some creditors would rather not go to the trouble of taking you to court. Your debt will be completely cleared after 7 years. Within the next 7 years though, creditors can come after you for payment again if they see that your financial situation has improved. To know if this is the route for you, seek legal help and they will fill you in on how the your exact situation will be perceived as well as guide you in the matter. Judgement proof can be a great alternative to filing for bankruptcy for debt.

Debt Consolidation

This is a popular option as it simplifies everything into one large payment. This involves taking out a large loan to cover all of your current debts and then slowly paying back this debt at lower interest rates. You can even reduce rates further by offering up collateral like putting property against the loan. Should you be unable to pay the loan, then your property will be seized.

The biggest disadvantage of the debt consolidation process is that it can turn several unsecured loans into one massive secured loan, usually against your house. This makes it a risky option in order to pay off debts.

Each alternative has their own advantages and disadvantages. Each one should be given plenty of thought as they can all directly affect the next 5 – 10 years of your life.

Immigrants In NYC Have Many Legal Rights



The laws surrounding immigration are complicated and numerous. As if things weren’t complicated enough, these laws also undergo frequent changes. The result is that many immigrants in the United States are uncertain about their current rights. Of the several questions commonly asked by immigrants, the most common ones are always the ones about what kinds of rights they have as immigrants.

First of all, legal immigrants have rights relating to work. When it comes to the immigration laws in the US, all immigrants have the right to minimum wages for full time work. Should they work overtime then they are also entitled to overtime pay that is valued higher than regular pay. Immigrants have rights to fair treatment and are legally entitled to fair wages.  All immigrants are allowed to keep their passports and other identification documents. Demanding and taking away worker’s ID’s and identification documents is a breach of the law and immigrants may file complaints against their employers should they demand something along these lines.

Immigration laws also allow immigrant employees to request help from work groups such as unions and labor rights. They also have the right to report any abuse they may be suffering on their job. This includes having a safe work environment that is free of any hazardous materials and keeps them access to proper safety equipment. Also, all their safety equipment must be in proper working order. Immigrants may ask for assistance from US courts should there be a need to resolve any issues or conflicts.

Secondly, immigrants have rights related to being arrested. Just like a permanent US resident, immigrants need to hear their Miranda rights. Immigrants have the right to remain silent if they are detained or arrested. This includes the right to remain silent about immigration status. The right to an attorney to defend and represent them and discuss their situation is also available to immigrants

One more notable right immigrants have is the right to refuse signing any documents. Immigrants may refuse to sign anything and to demand representation from a lawyer. The lawyer can help make sure the document is legally proper and drawn out correctly. It’s always considered a good move to wait to get legal advice from a lawyer before signing any documents, especially if an immigrant isn’t fully fluent in the English language. Many larger metropolises in the United States have valuable legal resources for newcomers to the country. The NYC Office Of Immigration Affairs is a great example of such a resource.

There are several other rights available to immigrants put in place to keep them protected. Having a good lawyer on your side may potentially save your life in some cases as sometimes being deported can mean life or death. An immigration lawyer with a good legal background will make sure that an immigrants right are not violated.

It is always in an immigrants best interests to have proper identification documents or copies thereof carried on them at all times. Proof of immigration status is necessary so whether someone is a legal green card holder or are a non-immigrant alien I.D — they should also carry around the I-94 card, a passport, or other documents that can prove their current status. Remember, should an immigrant ever be questioned or detained, they indeed have the right to remain silent and seek out the help of a lawyer.

NYC immigration law services


Personal Injury Laws & The Types Of Damages Courts Payout For


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Personal injury damages are categorized into two types: general damages and special damages. However, when establishing the extent of damages in a tort case, it is important to be more specific with what type of damages are involved.

Outlined below are the most common types of damages covered by personal injury law:

Personal Property Damages

Personal property damages, as the name suggests, refer to any damages caused by the tortfeasor (the person who commits the civil wrongdoing) to a person’s personal property.

Compensation is calculated based on the value of the property after it was damaged subtracted to the original value of the property.

If the property in question is completely destroyed, compensation should equal the fair market value of the property. In the event that compensation for repairs is sought, the amount of compensation must not exceed its market value.

Loss of Consortium

Under common law, loss of consortium refers to a spouse’s inability to have normal marital relations. In tort cases, damage is established when the spouse is unable to maintain such relations as a result of physical injury or mental or emotional distress. Since damages are not tangible, compensation is calculated based on evidence presented in court.

Damages that Result to Loss of Earnings

Damages that result to loss of earning is based on the income that you expect to lose because of your injuries (whether physical, mental, or emotional) and the amount lost because of your injuries.

It is easier to calculate your past income losses compared to your potential losses. Proving the amount of potential losses in court requires witness testimony, along with financial documentation. The witness you present in court must be able to prove that your injury will get in the way of your ability to perform either your current job properly or a similar job.

In addition, to get compensation for potential income losses, you must also be able to present a medical assessment of your injuries, as well as a schedule of your recovery period. A good attorney at law will be able to help put such a presentation together.

Claims on Wrongful Death

Wrongful death refers to the death of an individual as a result of negligence or intentional harm by another individual. This is fairly new in common law, as wrongful death did not used to be a valid claim under personal injury law. However, wrongful death is now recognized as a civil liability in every state.

Compensation for wrongful death goes to the estate of the deceased to cover creditor claims and any existing debts. The leftovers will go to the beneficiaries of the deceased or by default, to the immediate family if there are no disclosed heirs. In conclusion, it is now the legal right of family members and financial dependents of the deceased can now file for an death related accident or injury claim under personal injury law.

Emotional Distress

Emotional distress is compensated based on a comprehensive examination of a mental health professional on the victim of the crime. These damages are calculated based on healthcare expenses, loss of income, and loss of the capacity to earn. In many countries no financial rewards are granted for emotional distress. In the United States however, monetary rewards for emotional distress are indeed given by court order.

These are just some of the most common damages recognized under personal injury law. Damages that are easily calculated can be settled easily even through informal settlements but damages like emotional distress, loss of consortium, and potential loss of income may be harder to settle and require witness testimonies, as well as additional documentation as proof of damages.

injury law

Closing With or Without A Real Estate Lawyer:


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While it is a not a legal requirement to have a real estate attorney when buying a house, there are many benefits to having legal counsel in any real estate transaction.

In most states, a real estate agent or broker offers adequate assistance with drafting contracts and ensuring that titles are clean and free of any errors. However, in some states only certified real estate lawyers are allowed to handle contracts and title searches.

Since a house is likely to be one of the most valuable things you’ll purchase, it’s important to take necessary precaution to make sure your interests are taken care of.

Below are some of the benefits of having a real estate lawyer with you when buying a house:

Title Searches

Title searches are important in any real estate closing, as they ensure that the title is clean, ownership of the property is clear, and it is free from any legal claims, liabilities, unpaid taxes, and liens. However, problems can arise even after a title search is conducted. This is especially true if you use the seller’s title search agency to conduct the search. Since the agency will likely be using the same information from the previous title search, new problems may not easily be detected. If there are any problems that occur because of undetected errors in the property’s title, your real estate lawyer can advise you before the date of closing.

Contracts and Purchase Agreements

Except in states where real estate lawyers are required for drafting contracts, a real estate agent is usually the one who prepares the contract. Most agents use templates for contracts and this is where problems may arise. Template contracts might not include nuances in real estate laws in your state or area and this can lead to problems later on. A real estate lawyer can draft a contract that takes into account all state and federal real estate laws to ensure that no legal issues arise later on.

A real estate lawyer can also help you if there are any problems with alterations made to the property, whether existing or planned changes. For instance, the seller may have altered the property without taking into account zoning laws or you may want to add changes yourself that might not be legally possible. In such cases, a lawyer can assess the property from a legal standpoint and give you advise based on your needs.

Closing Process

During the date of closing, titles will be transferred from the hands of the seller to the hands of the buyer. Aside from title transfers, a closing statement should also be prepared to outline all payments and existing balances. If you are borrowing money to pay for the property, the lender’s representative or lawyer should also be present during the date of closing. A real estate lawyer can help explain the legal aspects of the transaction, as well as offer any advice should there be last minute changes to agreements. Your lawyer will make sure that your interests are protected until the very end.

Real Estate Law in NY

Traffic & Speeding Violations in NY: A Lawyers Advice


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Wherever you go, everyone always seems to be in rush. This phenomenon is most accentuated on the road. Everyone seems to be cutting everyone off, running red lights and speeding like there is no tomorrow. Sadly, this type of behavior can get you into serious legal trouble. Nothing can be more jeopardizing to your driving record than traffic violations. The more severe the traffic violation, the more points the violation will give you. The more points, the more you will have to spend on a traffic lawyer. Believe it or not, point violations are a lot more costly than the high legal fees you will have to pay your attorney. Your only hope to avoid ridiculous car insurance costs, possible jail time and other license penalties will be a not-guilty verdict. Today we will share some tips on how to avoid speeding violations that will result in high point violations.

Point Scale For Speeding Violations:

A rolling scale will determine how bad your speeding violation will be. This rolling point system is the law in New York state which includes the five boroughs of NYC as well as the eastern Long Island region. If you speed 9 MPH over the legal limit you will be served a 3-point violation. Once you go up to 10 to 20 mph over what the law allows you a 4-point violation will be served to you. If you decide to be foolish and speed 20 to 30 mph over the legal limit you will be dished a dangerous 6-point violation. If you decide to be even more foolish and risk yours and other peoples lives and drive 31 mph over the limit you will be in serious trouble. The judge will have the discretion to give you an 8-point violation or a license suspension which will be equate to 11 points. Even the most seasoned traffic ticket attorney that is available in NY state will have a very challenging time dealing with a violation 31 mph and higher.

The moral of this “speeding scale” story is to avoid speeding and not risk innocent lives because you are in a rush. If you decide to do so anyways you are looking at serious legal repercussions. If you do decide to speed you should at the least try to be somewhat humane and keep it less than 20 mph over the legal limit. Anything over that puts you in a very barbaric category in the eyes of a judge and makes your case much more difficult to win. In any case, if you are served a violation it would be wise to hire a skilled NY traffic attorney that understands the nuances of the law and has experience in attaining non-guilty verdicts for violations similar to yours.

traffic speeding lawyers in NYC

What Is The Law Regarding Divorce Fees/Costs in NYC?


The good news is that NYC is part of state wide effort to make the divorce process faster and cheaper. In July of 2011, New York State passed a law which serves to allow couples to obtain a divorce without having to prove any timely and costly legal claims like adultery or abandonment. This innovative “No-Fault” divorce in our state allows couples to get divorced without making any one party at fault. Divorce attorneys can now provide client’s looking for an uncontested divorce with a cheaper, easier and less time consuming divorce.

When it comes to divorce one of the first things that comes to mind is how much will it all cost? The short answer: it depends if it contested or uncontested and how hard the sides battle in the event it is contested. uncontested divorces are fast & easy while a contested divorce can go past settlement and deep into trial. In most cases the couple will be able to save a lot of legal fees by coming to mutual agreement and filing for an uncontested divorce.

If divorce is contested, both partners usually pay the court fees and legal fees upfront. Some people have their attorney’s request for their spouse to cover a portion of their fees or the whole thing. It is also common for a judge to order one spouse to cover all legal costs involved. This is determined by a number of factors such as which of you filed for the divorce, if one partner is a stay-at-home parent, and who has a more capable divorce lawyer.

Here is a list of things that will determine how much divorce can cost:

Your divorce lawyer’s legal fees

When it comes to divorce, you don’t want to skimp on attorney fees. Find a NYSBA authorized divorce lawyer who will protect you and your interests. With enough searching, you may be able to find a lawyer who won’t charge incredibly high fees. Most divorce lawyers usually charge a lot but they usually provide good work to back it up.


The divorce proceedings will cost significantly less the more you and your spouse can come to terms and agree on all matters involved and avoid trial as fast as possible. Lengthy settlements or drawn out court cases about marital property, child custody, and child support can cost a pretty penny. These factors constitute the major expenses in most divorces.

Will you fight for custody of your children?

Fighting for custody over your children will bring up several fees including psychiatric evaluations, witness testimonies, etc. Fighting for custody also means more work for your lawyer who is likely to be billing you by the hour.

How much marital assets and debts is there?

If you have gathered significant amounts of debts and marital property, you may need to hire a certified divorce financial analyst, or a pension fund expert. This would be additional expenses added on top of all your legal fees. One should seek advice from a divorce attorney regarding the effect that any debt, assets and property will have on their case.

Your legal strategy and your spouse’s legal strategy

This simply highlights the importance of picking legal representation you are comfortable and see eye-to-eye with. If either you or your spouse’s attorney chooses aggressive one-sided strategies, you will be the one footing the bill. Some divorce lawyers choose more adversarial tactics since it means more money for them.

Legally, you can always fire your legal representative and find another one if you want to try a different more practical approach. What really determines the cost of divorce is how much you and your spouse are willing to work with each other to fix your issues. Settling things outside of court from the get go will be the key to save money. This will allow you to take advantage of the aforementioned “NYC No Fault Divorce Law” If both of you cannot put your differences aside prepare your wallets and free up your schedule.

divorce ny bar

Contributed By A New York State Bar Authorized Attorney

Medicaid Planning 101: Flushing Away Your Elder Law Concerns



Avoiding Medicaid liens on ones home is a crucial part of planning for your future. Making NY states elder Laws work for you requires learning about your rights in regards to protecting your home. Nursing home care is very expensive and if covered by medicaid the government can put liens on ones property. An irrevocable Medicaid Trust is one strategy to avoid these liens which also happens to be a very flexible strategy. Others use a plan which involves the transfer of ownership of a home to someone in their family. The original owner can protect themselves under this ownership transfer with what’s called a “life estate”.

Irrevocable Medicaid Trust

This process requires ones home and assets to go into a trust which is managed by a member or members of your choice. One can choose anyone they confide in to be your trustee except for your spouse. Some of the benefits to this strategy include rent that the property generates, the right to live in your home for as long as you and the spouse are alive and many tax benefits. After death the funds are distributed exactly how one selected for them to be distributed.

Life Estate

Similar to a Medicaid trust, one can be assured of their right to live in the home for as long as they are alive and collect any rent profits. Life Estate’s have shorter penalty periods and are easy to create and implement. This makes a “Life Estate” a more frugal choice in comparison to a Medicaid Trust. However, when you transfer your property under a Life Estate arrangement you lose your right to sell the house without the consent of the other party. You also lose the right to change ownership of the property down the line without the consent of the other party.

For a complete list of the advantages and disadvantages of the Life Estate process versus the Irrevocable Medicaid Trust process read this article about Medicaid Planning laws & the Life Estate deed.

Planning your future in accordance to NY state Elder Law can be very complicated. Medicaid planning and elder lawyers should be consulted before any major decision is made.

This information was contributed by: Law Offices of Roman Aminov 147-17 Union Turnpike Flushing, NY 11367 (347)766-2685. Roman Aminov is an Estate Planning Attorney in the NYC area. Roman runs an Elder Law Firm in Flushing, NY.  Roman’s writings on estate planning and elder law topics are published regularly in magazines across the New York Metropolitan Area.

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My Workers Comp Claim Was Denied: Whats The Law?



The question that was recently posed to me was regarding denied workers compensation claims. Claims made for gradual work-related illnesses like cancer, heart attacks, and Carpal Tunnel Syndrome are rejected most of the time. Even claims for blatant workplace injuries resulting from falls, machinery malfunctions, and other work-related accidents that occur daily in New York are rejected at a very high rate. Why are the workers claims made on such injuries rejected so often? The reason is that it’s very easy for a workers compensation insurance adjuster to decide and convince the worker that the injury is not work related or the compensation desired does not fit the bill. Doctors can often make mistakes as well in the way they portray your injury in relationship to the workplace. Often, the application that one submitted has issues in itself and due to these inherit issues it will therefore get rejected.

Hiring a workers compensation lawyer from the beginning would have been the best bet but now that the claim has been denied it’s time for a legal hearing. At this point the worker will have a chance to prove their case to the doctor, to the insurance adjuster and to the Administrative Law judge. Generally they will try to offer a very conservative settlement for whatever hardships and expenses one had to endure. That is exactly why it is so important to hire an attorney for this legal hearing.

If you would like to learn more about our workers laws here in the city of New York we would like to invite you to read this informative Workers Compensation resource.

This information was contributed by the: Shulman & Hill Workers Compensation Firm 44 Court St #808, Brooklyn, NY 11201 (718) 852-4700

Alex Shulman is a Workers Compensation & Social Security Disability Attorney in the Brooklyn, NYC area. Alex’s informative writings on Workers & Disability law are published and revered across the New York region.

Shulman & Hill Workers Comepensation Firm


What’s The Law For An Uncontested Divorce in New York?


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In the state of New York, a couple can get divorced without the intervention of a court of law through a divorce agreement or settlement. As long as the parties agree about the future of their property, finances and children it will be referred to as an “uncontested divorce”. This is a quick process which usually does not involve the need to appear in court. Sometimes an uncontested divorce is referred to as “on consent,” as the defendant agrees to divorce with the signing of the required documents. Other times an uncontested divorce is referred to as “on default” as the defendant does respond to a summons with a notice that is served to them.

If you would like to learn more about our local divorce process read this informative and to the point Divorce guide for residents of NY.

This valuable information was contributed by the: Law Offices of Nathan Pinkhasov 95-20 63rd Road, Suite B Rego Park, NY 11374 (718) 459-2600

Nathan Pinkhasov is a Divorce Attorney in the Queens, NYC area. Nathan’s informative writings on Matrimonial & Divorce law are well recognized and published across the five boroughs of NYC.

Pinkhasov Divorce Law Queens, NY