Quincy Legal Issues Blog

Immigrants face uphill battle when accused of crimes

As the Trump administration continues its high-profile crackdown on immigration, many immigrants are worried. Some fear that anything they do to step out of line can endanger their immigration status.

Recently, the administration announced a new rule that could deny green cards to immigrants if they need public assistance, such as food stamps. The rule threatens to deny a path to citizenship to thousands of people in Massachusetts.

Recognizing the causes of slip, trip and fall accidents

Slip, trip and fall accidents can happen almost anywhere. You can encounter fall hazards at retail stores, office buildings, parking lots, sidewalks, apartment complexes, restaurants, museums and more. Astoundingly, falls result in 8 million visits to the emergency room every year.

With such a high risk of suffering an injury, you need to know how to prevent such accidents. The first and most important step to prevention is education. When you know what hazards to watch out for, you can avoid them more effectively. 

Strategies for avoiding probate

In Massachusetts, the term "probate" refers to the process of transferring property after a person has died. This legal process is overseen by a Family and Probate Court, and generally must be completed within three years of the death. However, not all types of property must go through probate.

To understand why, first we must look at the meaning of the term "estate." After a person dies, all his or her property becomes known as that person's estate. If the person left a will, the probate court determines if the will is valid and then oversees the process as the property in the estate is distributed according to the terms of the will. Typically, this work is performed by an executor or personal representative who is named in the will or appointed by the court.

Foreign investment in U.S. residential real estate drops 36%

As the market for residential real estate continues to heat up, the local news media have been full of doom and gloom. However, there may be signs of a slowdown ahead.

A recent article in the Boston Globe detailed how local prices for single-family homes and condominiums hit all-time records in June. The story's headline portrayed this as a disaster: "If you don't already own a home in Massachusetts, it may be too late," it read.

Making modifications to a parenting plan

As the new school year begins, family schedules begin to fill up and change. For children in divorced households, this can be a delicate balance to keep.

In some cases, previous arrangements may not work as effectively as they once did, and a modification may be necessary. Before seeking modifications, parents should consider a few things.

$49.3 financing deal to help preserve affordable housing

As costs continue to rise in the Massachusetts residential real estate market, state and local governments struggle more and more with ways to provide affordable housing. Private builders and investors can usually make a lot more money creating luxury condominiums, and without outside help, they may have little economic incentive to create apartments or other housing units that lower-income people can afford. To provide that incentive, some local and state governments offer financing.

Recently, MassHousing obtained $49.3 million in financing for WinnCompanies to assist with the preservation of affordable housing at the Tannery, a 284-unit community in Peabody. Under the agreement, the company commits to keeping the units affordable for 45 years, rather than leasing them at market rates after a planned renovation.

Can individuals file for Chapter 11?

As this blog has noted many times, the two most common forms of bankruptcy for individuals are Chapter 7 and Chapter 13. Sometimes news articles mention a celebrity filing for Chapter 11 bankruptcy. This is actually very rare. The vast majority of Chapter 11 bankruptcies are filed by businesses, not individuals.

To understand why, first we should briefly discuss the basics of the three types of bankruptcy and what parties can be eligible for them.

3 types of payroll fraud that may give you headaches

As a small business owner, you work hard to meet customer expectations and to keep your employees happy. One way to accomplish both tasks is to stay on top of payroll. Still, accurately paying your employees may be more difficult than it sounds. 

According to some estimates, payroll fraud happens in more than 25% of businesses. Even worse, small businesses are about twice as likely to experience fraud in payroll than their larger counterparts. To keep fraud out of your organization, you should know how it typically manifests. Here are three common types of payroll fraud: 

How can I plan for the possibility of disability?

While wills are oriented around preparing for what will happen after you pass away, other elements of estate planning can go into effect during your lifetime. A good estate plan takes into account the possibility you may become disabled due to illness or injury.

This, of course, is a possibility no one enjoys thinking about, but it can happen, and often does. We all have known people who went into a gradual or sudden decline that left them unable to care for themselves or to make important decisions about their futures. It's important that we are prepared for the possibility this could happen to us.

Your operating agreement is key to your LLC

Choosing the right legal structure for your new business can be almost as important as choosing the right business idea. A bad choice can expose you to too much personal risk.

One of the more popular structures for new businesses is the limited liability company, or LLC. An LLC is highly adaptable, and can be used for business entities small and large. Even Chrysler, one of the "big three" American automakers, operates as an LLC in the United States. Most LLCs are much smaller entities, however. It's possible for one person to form an LLC, although sole owner LLCs can face greater scrutiny when it comes to taxes.

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