content top

California Employers: Beware the Minimum Wage!

Most employers know that the minimum wage in California increased to $9/hour on July 1, 2014 and will rise to $10/hour on January 1, 2016. You may be thinking, “No problem; all my employees make more than that.” However, do you have exempt employees (professional, executive, or administrative) making less than $38,000 per year? Or less than $42,000? You may have a problem now, or in a year and a half. Most exemptions require (in addition...

Read More

Practice Safe Newslettering

The newsletter editors and flyer-makers of many organizations enjoy livening up their productions with photographs obtained from the World Wide Web. Trouble can result, however, if you use copywritten material without the permission of the artist or photographer, and someone calls you on it. Lawsuits resulting in settlements anywhere from a few hundred to a few thousand dollars have ensued. Not to worry – there are plenty of sites where...

Read More

May is National Pet Month – Providing for Your Pet After Death

Many people come to our firm to have their estate plans prepared. There is always concern, of course, about providing for children and other loved ones. Possessions are distributed with great detail and attention is given to bank accounts, vehicles, investments and business holdings. Rarely, however, do people think about what might happen to their pets in the event of an unexpected death, or make provisions for animal companions who might...

Read More

Have you thought about your final disposition?

People and their families often have strong feelings about the disposition of their remains after death. Some wish to be cremated, others prefer burial. Some people want their bodies used for scientific purposes and the environmentally-conscience can now choose to have a green burial. If this is a subject that is important to you, you must leave clear instructions so there is no confusion after you are gone. Take the case of Mickey Rooney,...

Read More

Year-End Charitable Giving Tips

Two vehicles to obtain tax benefits while providing gifts to your favorite charities are a direct distribution from your IRA and creating a charitable remainder trust. Persons over age 70 ½ are allowed to distribute up to $100,000 per year directly to a charity from a traditional IRA (one where your contributions were tax exempt but interest earned will be taxed upon withdrawal) and not pay tax on income earned. This provision under the...

Read More

New Landlord/Tenant Laws for 2013

If you are a residential or commercial landlord, Governor Jerry Brown signed several new laws which may affect you this year … Security Deposits: Landlords may now, with the tenant’s agreement, deposit any remaining portion of a tenant’s security deposit electronically into the tenant’s bank account or other financial institution (AB1679). Disposal of Abandoned Personal Property: The minimum value of property left behind by a tenant...

Read More

Supreme Court Upholds First Sale Doctrine

On March 19, 2013, the Supreme Court ruled that the “first sale” doctrine applies to copies of copyrighted work lawfully made abroad, reversing the judgment of the Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit. The 6-3 decision came in the case of Supap Kirtsaeng, a USC graduate student from Thailand who purchased approximately 600 copies of textbooks from his home country at relatively inexpensive prices and resold them in the United States....

Read More
content top