Who should know about your will?
The short answer to this is everyone that is important to you should know that you have a will. However, it is important to understand that the contents of your will should be private..
Who should hold the original? Someone you trust, but a really reasonable place is with your attorney.
This is another really good reason to draft your will with your attorney and have your attorney hold the original for you.
Does it surprise you that most people do not have a plan for the care and custody of their minor children in the event of their (the parents) death? It shouldn’t. The topic is tough to discuss because most people do not think about what happens when they die. (Except for me, I spend countless hours thinking about this)
The topic is an incredibly difficult one because almost certainly there is no single person that fits just right. However, if do you fail to nominate, the California statute will shall govern in most cases. Even if you might not be able to find the perfect guardian for your child(ren), you should discuss the decision with your partner.
Discussing your own mortality is not easy- The wife and I did it, and it was a bit surreal. It was also incredibly difficult. (Although some people were really easy (Nope- No way- and I Don’t Think So’s). The low hanging fruit of the “No-Tree” was actually a good way to start the conversation- there’s humor in this- try it you’ll see- just remember to ask “why” that’s where the laughs start. One piece of sound advice for this conversation- tread carefully... After the laughter, it will be time to get serious and actually choose someone.
Put your decision in writing. California law allows parent(s) to nominate a person to take care and custody of your child in the event of your death (or incapacity). California courts give great discretion to a nominated guardian. Your document nominating your guardian must be written and signed by the parent. The usual place to do this is in your will or trust. However, it can also be a stand alone document.
One thing to remember - these are legal documents- don’t do them yourself. Ask a clever professional to help.
I know one: Jiyoung Moon: Jmoon@sasikmoon.com 310 571 5259
Truancy. This is not a topic I have thought of in quite some time. However, it has possible severe repercussions to the child and to the parents.
California has a compulsory full time education law. Education code section 48200 states that each person between the ages of 6 and 18 years not exempted under the provisions of Chapter 2 or Chapter 3 (commencing with Section 48400) is subject to compulsory full-time education. Each person subject to compulsory full-time education shall attend the public full-time day school for the full school day.
By law, those who are absent without a valid excuse for three or more days during a school year, or who are tardy more than 30 minutes without a valid excuse on three occasions in a school year, are truants. Any student who is absent without a valid excuse for 10 percent or more of the school days during a school year would, if school officials have met certain criteria, be considered a chronic truant. (Ed.C §§ 48260, 48263.6)
Los Angeles Municipal Code SEC. 45.04. DAYTIME CURFEW RESTRICTIONS FOR MINORS. It is unlawful for any minor under the age of 18, who is subject to compulsory education to be present in any place open to the public during the hours of the day when the school, which the minor would normally attend, is in session.
Officer I’m not truant I have a valid excuse. What say you might that be?
Excused Absences: California E.C. 48205 provides that a student shall be excused from school when the absence is due to:
Note- that personal reasons has the language of “are not limited to”
Which means if you want to get your child out of school for self-directed or independent study, you can do so, you just need to get it approved. If it doesn’t get approved then we fall into truancy.
Truancy has teeth- so be careful.
The school has a duty to notify you of the truancy. The notice must state that if the parents do not compel attendance that they themselves and or the child may subject to prosecution. The notice has specific requirements that I won’t go into in this article. If a child is reported truant four or more times during the school year they may be considered a habitual truant. A review board will determine if the problem can be resolved with community services along with family cooperation or if there is a need for a juvenile court petition. WIC § 601)
The juvenile court can have the parents personally deliver the child to school for the rest of the school year, and it can ask for a cash bond to assure attendance. (Ed.C §§ 48268-69)
A criminal complaint can also be filed against the parents for failure to comply. (Ed.C § 48291)
So what does all this mean.
If you find yourself dealing with a truancy situation call us. We can help.
310 571 5206 email@example.com
The Estate Tax is a tax on your right to transfer property at your death. It consists of an accounting of everything you own or have certain interests in at the date of death (Refer to Form 706 (PDF)). The fair market value of these items is used, not necessarily what you paid for them or what their values were when you acquired them.
The total of all of these items is your "Gross Estate." The includible property may consist of cash and securities, real estate, insurance, trusts, annuities, business interests and other assets.
Once you have accounted for the Gross Estate, certain deductions (and in special circumstances, reductions to value) are allowed in arriving at your "Taxable Estate." These deductions may include mortgages and other debts, estate administration expenses, property that passes to surviving spouses and qualified charities. The value of some operating business interests or farms may be reduced for estates that qualify.
After the net amount is computed, the value of lifetime taxable gifts (beginning with gifts made in 1977) is added to this number and the tax is computed. The tax is then reduced by the available unified credit.
Most relatively simple estates (cash, publicly traded securities, small amounts of other easily valued assets, and no special deductions or elections, or jointly held property) do not require the filing of an estate tax return. A filing is required for estates with combined gross assets and prior taxable gifts exceeding $1,500,000 in 2004 - 2005; $2,000,000 in 2006 - 2008; $3,500,000 for decedents dying in 2009; and $5,000,000 or more for decedent's dying in 2010 and 2011 (note: there are special rules for decedents dying in 2010); $5,120,000 in 2012, $5,250,000 in 2013, $5,340,000 in 2014, $5,430,000 in 2015, $5,450,000 in 2016, and $5,490,000 in 2017.
Beginning January 1, 2011, estates of decedents survived by a spouse may elect to pass any of the decedent’s unused exemption to the surviving spouse. This election is made on a timely filed estate tax return for the decedent with a surviving spouse. Note that simplified valuation provisions apply for those estates without a filing requirement absent the portability election.
For additional information, refer to Instructions for Form 706.
To understand what all this means for you call us 310 - 571 - 5206. Or email at firstname.lastname@example.org
In California the legal age for drinking alcohol is 21. An alcoholic beverage is defined as any beverage that contains at least one-half of 1 percent of alcohol. (BPC §§ 23004, 25658, 25659). Providing alcoholic beverages to anyone under the age of 21 is prohibited.
Further still, possession of alcohol in public places by anyone under the age of 21 is prohibited. (BPC § 25662(a)) No possessing or drinking alcohol if you are a minor. If you are in a public park or recreation area you cannot possess an open container of alcohol. If you get caught you can be cited with an infraction. (BPC § 25620)
Bars and places that serve alcohol are also places that you cannot have anyone under the age of 21.
Here's the one that is romanticized in Hollywood- It is also illegal to possess false identification. It is also illegal to use fake ID to buy (or attempt to buy) alcohol or to enter an establishment where alcohol is being served. (BPC § 25661)
What about at the home you say? It is legal for those under 21 to be in a home where adults over 21 are drinking alcohol. However, it is illegal to provide alcohol to anyone under 21. Providing alcohol to a minor is a misdemeanor. (BPC § 25658)
If you provide alcohol or a controlled substance to someone under the age of 21, and that person gets in a car accident, you could be found guilty of a misdemeanor and face a $1,000 fine and up to a year in jail. (BPC § 25658.2)
Driving under the influence of alcohol (DUI) is a very serious crime that often requires the payment of a large fine, a mandatory jail sentence, five years’ probation and the suspension or revocation of a driver’s license.
To sum it up- keep booze away from your kids. No matter how responsible you think they are. The price is never worth it.
Call us if you need advice 310 571 5206 or email at email@example.com