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Swenson Lervick News

When is the right time to incorporate my small business?

Many individuals start their small business as a sole proprietorship or as a simple general partnership with a friend. As some point, the question always arises, "Should I form an LLC or a corporation?" Minnesota has a variety of different types of corporate entities of which both a limited liability company and a corporation are included. Each has its advantages and disadvantages as far as taxes and management, but the general questions that should typically be answered when forming a company are as follows:

Could payable on death accounts benefit your estate plan?

Many Minnesota residents know that probating an estate can take a considerable amount of time. You may know this from firsthand experience closing a loved one's estate or from hearing others talk about the long process. As a result, you want to do what you can to help your family settle your estate more easily when the time comes.

One way you can help your probate case go more quickly is to avoid having certain assets go through the process. You may be able to transfer certain assets into trusts and remove them from your estate to avoid probate, and you may also be able to utilize payable on death accounts.

Your Guide...to Discovery

In a previous article I noted that most lawsuits include an information-sharing phase called discovery. Discovery is like a fishing expedition because it is how the parties "fish" for information about each other's cases. And, like a tackle box with different lures, the courts' rules give us many different tools for fishing for information during a lawsuit. 

What is Family Law?

Everyone has heard the term "family law" before. But, the term doesn't do a good job of describing itself or what it includes. At some point in your life you may have wondered if you need a family law lawyer. Broadly speaking, "family law" doesn't describe a narrow specialty or area of the law, but instead the term refers to a broad range of legal issues that deal with family matters and relationships. It consists of different laws, rules, and court decisions that govern the legal rights and responsibilities between individuals who share a close connection.These relationships usually involve people who are related by blood or marriage, but family law can affect those in more distant relationship as well. Often times family law issues become more apparent when families or relationships are going through a time of transition. This could mean divorce or separation, or it could be a child custody, support or visitation dispute. It could be seeking protection from domestic violence. It could mean proactively defining a couple's legal rights before entering into a marriage relationship through an Antenuptial/Prenuptial Agreement. Or, it could mean seeking to expand a family through adoption, or wanting to establish a parent/child relationship in a paternity matter. The "family law" umbrella covers many legal areas which include but aren't necessarily limited to:

Can I sell my home without a Real Estate Agent?

Don't get me wrong, real estate agents provide a much-needed service to the community. They also come with expertise that the average person simply does not have with regard to how and when to sell a home. However, particularly if you have a willing buyer in mind and the patience to jump through the hoops yourself, selling your home is not as complicated as it may seem and may save you significant dollars.

What if my Child gets Hurt?

Personal injury actions-where you are injured due to somebody else's actions or failure to act-can be a lot of stress added to the fact that you are injured and trying to focus on your recovery. When the injured person is your child, the drive to protect and defend that child can make an already stressful situation overwhelming. In Minnesota, a parent can file a lawsuit on behalf of a minor who is too young mount their own legal action, but there are specific rules that govern how any money paid out from such a suit must be held.

Love Shouldn't Hurt: Recognizing Domestic Violence Awareness Month

October is domestic violence awareness month, and as a prosecutor for the City of Alexandria, I am confronted with the realities of domestic violence on a daily basis. What I have come to learn is that, despite what many people think, domestic violence is not just punches, black eyes, bruises and stitches. Domestic violence is yelling, humiliation, stalking, manipulation, coercion, threats and isolation. It's stealing a paycheck, keeping tabs online, non-stop texting, constant use of the silent treatment, or calling someone stupid or dumb so many times that the victim comes to actually believe it. It involves behavior that is used to establish power and control over another person, often through fear and intimidation over a period of time, using threats and verbal and emotional abuse.

Your Guide...to understanding a lawsuit.

A lawsuit is a bit like venturing into the deep dark wilderness. Without a good guide in the wild, you're likely to get lost, step into the poison ivy, or maybe even get eaten by the lions and tigers and bears, oh my! Without a good guide through the legal maze of a lawsuit, you're likely to get lost in the process, step into nasty legal weeds, or even get "eaten" by a lawyer who convinces a judge to rule against you.

Breaking: New FLSA Salary Requirements Set

California-Pay-stub.jpegThe United States Department of Labor announced yesterday its much-awaited final rule increasing the salary requirements for "white collar" exemptions under the Fair Labor Standards Act. The final rule will:

Payable on death accounts keep funds out of probate

When considering the best planning options for an estate plan, it is easy to feel overwhelmed. A number of options are available, and those tools allow each person to craft a plan that fits his or her unique circumstances. Still, you may worry about how to use the right planning tools for your estate.

First, you may want to consider your wishes for your estate. For instance, if you would like to minimize the probate process, you could find it useful to utilize planning options that help you keep certain assets out of probate. In particular, you may want to explore payable on death accounts.

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