Archive for the ‘Thursday Reports’ Category

The Thursday Report – July 18, 2013, Einstein, New LLC Chart and Disregarded Entities

Posted on: July 18th, 2013

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Providing a link between Wednesday and Friday.

Special Albert Einstein Edition

How to File Tax Returns for Disregarded Entities and Grantor Trusts, with Sample Forms by Kenneth J. Crotty, J.D., LL.M.

Ken Crotty’s LLC Clinic – Increase in Non-Waivable Provisions

Last Call to Take Advantage of Ultra-Low Rates for GRATs? An Article by Stephen S. Schilling, CFA and Tara Thompson Popernik, CFA, CFP of AllianceBernstein

See Our New Seminars & Webinars Below in Blue

Lawyers in History: The Impact of Law Practice on Their Lives and Careers – John Penn 

Albert Einstein

Albert Einstein

Thursdays are an illusion albeit seemingly very real. 

While traveling on a train at 100 mph the Thursday Report remains stationary, and may therefore be equivalent to the speed of light.

E=Thursday Report3 

-        Albert “Colonel Sanders” Einstein, 1953

Princeton University, 1953 Lectures

From the book entitled My Life with Albert Einstein by Colonel Harlan Sanders

SOME OF OUR FAVORITE ALBERT EINSTEIN QUOTES:

We all know that light travels faster than sound.  That’s why certain people appear bright until you hear them speak.

The greatest mathematical discovery of all time is compound interest.

If a cluttered desk is a sign of a cluttered mind, of what, then, is an empty desk a sign?

Any intelligent fool can make things bigger, more complex, and more violent. It takes a touch of genius — and a lot of courage — to move in the opposite direction. 

For a discussion of Albert Einstein’s theory of relativity and the answer to the question as to whether light gets faster when projected from a moving object click here.

Dogs

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We welcome contributions for future Thursday Report topics. If you are interested in making a contribution as a guest writer, please email Janine Gunyan at Janine@gassmanpa.com.  This report and other Thursday Reports can be found on our website at www.gassmanlawassociates.com.

How to File Tax Returns for Disregarded Entities and Grantor Trusts, with Sample Forms

By: Kenneth J. Crotty, J.D., LL.M.

This is part 1 of a 2 part piece on this topic.  Next week Ken will cover electing small business trusts and other issues that arise with disregarded entities.

“Disregarded entities are an illusion albeit not a reality.” – Albert Einstein

Ken Crotty of our firm has spent a lot of time preparing an explanation of how to report disregarded entities and defective grantor trusts for federal income tax purposes.

We do not believe that this material is available anywhere else.

The most common disregarded entities are single member LLCs and “defective” Grantor trusts.  As a general rule, disregarded entities and Grantor trusts are not required to obtain employer identification numbers.  However, many financial institutions require employer identification numbers for income reporting purposes and will not allow the social security number of the owner or Grantor to be used.

Reporting Disregarded Entities

If a disregarded entity has an employer identification number and the ownership of the entity changes so that it no longer qualifies as a disregarded entity, the disregarded entity should retain its old employer identification number.  For example, if a disregarded single member LLC has an employer identification number, and then a second member buys into the LLC so that it is now treated as a partnership, the partnership should continue using the employer identification number that was assigned to the LLC when it was disregarded.

Generally disregarded entities do not need to file a separate tax return.  The items of income and deduction from the activities of the disregarded entity will be picked up on the owner=s tax return on the following Schedules:

Schedule C B Profit or Loss from Business (sole proprietorship)

Schedule E B Supplemental Income or Loss

Schedule F B Profit or Loss from Farming

The disregarded entity is treated as separate from its owner for employment tax purposes for wages paid on or after January 1, 2009 and for excise taxes reported and paid on Forms 720, 730, 2290, 11-C, or 8849 after December 31, 2007.  In these situations, the employment tax and excise tax return instructions should be reviewed to be certain that the disregarded entity is reporting the necessary information.

Reporting Grantor Trusts

If a trustee is not using one of the optional methods of filing, which are discussed below, and the entire trust is a Grantor trust, the trustee need only fill in the entity information on the Form 1041 and not show any dollar amounts on the Form 1041 itself.  Instead, the trustee should show the dollar amounts on attachments to the Form 1041.   The attachment should not be a Schedule K-1. The trustee must give the Grantor of the trust a copy of the attachment.

If the trust is only partially by a Grantor trust, then the items of income and deduction for the non-Grantor portion of the trust should be reported on the Form 1041 as normally would be done and the portion of the items treated as owned by a Grantor trust should be shown on an attachment.

The attachment must show the name, identifying number, and address of the persons to whom the income is taxable.  The income must be reported in the same detail as it would be reported on the Grantor=s income tax return if it had been received directly by the Grantor.  Any deductions or credits that apply to the income also need to be reported in the same detail as they would be if they had been received directly by the Grantor.  The Grantor then reports the items of income, deductions and credits on the Grantor=s personal return.

For Grantor trusts, there are three optional methods of filing, which the trustee may choose instead of filing the Form 1041.  If a trust is treated as owned by one person, then the trustee may select Option 1 or Option 2 described below.  If a husband and wife are treated as the owners of a trust, they will be deemed to be one person and therefore the trustee may select either Option 1 or Option 2 below.  If the trust is treated as owned by more than one person, then the trustee may select Option 3 below.

You can click here to see the sample documentation to be used to inform the IRS that a trust is disregarded for income tax purposes.  There is a sample default Form 1041 which can be filed for a Grantor Trust.  Also provided are samples showing the reporting necessary under Option 1 and Option 2.

Option 3 has the same reporting requirements as Option 2 but only applies in situations where there is more than one Grantor, and the Grantors are not husband and wife.  In this situation the trustee needs to determine which portion of the trust assets were payable to Grantor 1 and which portion of the trust assets were payable to Grantor 2.  The trustee would then provide each of Grantor 1 and Grantor 2 with the same information as shown under Option 2.

Option 1:        The trustee must give all of the payers of income during the year to the trust the social security number of the individual treated as the owner of the trust and the trust=s address.  To use this method, the owner of the trust must provide the trustee with a signed W-9.  If the owner of the trust is not the trustee or co-trustee, then the trustee must (1) give the owner a statement showing all of the items of income, deduction, and credit of the trust; (2) identify the payer of each item of income; (3) explain how the owner takes such items into account when preparing the owner’s tax return; and (4) inform the owner that these items must be included on his or her tax return.  If the trustee reports under Option 1 and the trust does not have an employer identification number, the trust does not need to obtain an employer identification number to satisfy Option 1.

Option 2:        The trustee must give all of the payers of income during the year to the trust the full name of the trust, the trust=s address and the trust=s tax identification number.  The trustee also must file with the IRS the appropriate Forms 1099 to report the income paid to the trust during the tax year.  These forms show the trust as the payer and the individual treated as the owner of the trust as the payee.  If the owner of the trust is not the trustee or co-trustee, then the trustee must (1) give the owner a statement showing all of the items of income, deduction, and credit of the trust; (2) explain how the owner takes such items into account when preparing the owner=s tax return; and (3) inform the owner that these items must be included on his or her tax return.  If the trustee reports under Option 2 and the trust does not have an employer identification number, the trust needs to obtain an employer identification number to satisfy Option 2.

Option 3:        The trustee must give all of the payers of income during the year to the trust the full name of the trust, the trust=s address and the trust=s tax identification number.  The trustee also needs to file with the IRS the appropriate Forms 1099 to report the income paid to the trust during the tax year.  These forms would show the trust as the payer and the owners as the payees.  The trustee must (1) give each owner a statement showing all of the items of income, deduction, and credit of the trust attributable to such owner; (2) explain how each owner takes such items into account when preparing his or her tax return; and (3) inform each owner that these items must be included on his or her tax return.  If the trustee reports under Option 3 and the trust does not have an employer identification number, the trust needs to obtain an employer identification number to satisfy Option 3.

If a trustee has been filing a Form 1041, the trustee can change to one of the three optional methods listed above at any time.  The trustee can do this by filing a final Form 1041 for the tax year immediately preceeding the first tax year that the trustee elects to use one of the optional methods of filing.  On the form of the final Form 1041, the Final return box in item F must be checked and the words “Pursuant to section 1.671-4(g), this is the final Form 1041 for this grantor trust” should be written on the first page of the Form 1041.

The filing of the relevant 1099s by the trustee, in relation to Options 2 and 3 above depends on the type of income for the Trust.  For example the turstee may be required to file a 1099-DIV for dividend income and file a 1099-INT for relevant interest income.

In relation to the reporting of income from long-term gain or loss from a partnership, S Corporation, or trust, Treasury Regulation 1.671-4(b)(5) provides that in the case of a trust that owns an interest, the distributive share belonging to the trust as a partner, shareholder, or beneficiary will not be includable by the trustee on any Form 1099 because the distributive share is reportable by the partnership, S corporation, or trust on the Schedule K-1.

Certain trusts are not allowed to use the optional filing methods.  These include the following:

1.         The common trust fund;

2.         A foreign trust or trust that has any of its assets located outside of the United States;

3.         A qualified Subchapter S trust;

4.         A trust which is treated as owned by one or more individuals who have a tax year other than a calendar year;

5.         A trust which is owned by one or more persons who are not U.S. persons; and

6.         A trust which is owned by one or more persons if at least one person is an exempt recipient for informational reporting purposes unless at least one other person is not an exempt recipient and the trustee reports the information without treating any of the owners as exempt recipients.

Ken Crotty’s LLC Clinic – Increase in Non-Waivable Provisions

The new LLC Act is a “default” act which generally allows the parties to customize the Operating Agreement for the LLC based on the agreement of the members.  However, some provisions may not be waived or modified.  Compared to Section 608.423 of the old act, Section 605.0105 of the new Act greatly expands these non-waiveable provisions.  The chart below compares these two Sections showing the differences.

We thank recent Stetson Law School graduate, Corinna Cicmanec who will be attending the University of Florida Tax Program this coming semester, for preparing the following chart and putting up with us for most of the summer.  Congratulations Corinna and enjoy your time in Gainesville relaxing with the Internal Revenue Code.

 

Provision

Old – §608.423 New – §605.0105

The Operating Agreement

The operating agreement:-        Regulates the conduct and affairs of the LLC;-        Establishes duties; and-        Governs relations between the members, and the members and the LLC Operating agreement specifically governs:

  1.  Relations between members, and between members and the LLC
  2. The rights and duties of managers
  3. The conduct of activities and affairs of the LLC
  4. Means and conditions of amending the operating agreement

Agreement Limitations

Cannot unreasonably restrict the right to information or access to records under §608.4101 (right to information provision) Cannot unreasonably restrict the right to information or access to information, but can impose reasonable restrictions on the availability and use of info, and may define appropriate remedies for breach of a reasonable restriction on use.
Cannot eliminate the duty of loyalty, but can:-        Identify activities that are not in violation of the duty of loyalty if not unreasonable; and-        Specify a number or percentage of members or disinterested managers that can authorize, or ratify, an act or transaction as not violating the duty of loyalty if all material facts were disclosed. Cannot eliminate the duty of loyalty or duty of care (under §605.04091, standards of conduct for members and managers), except for the rules that allowed under subsection 4 (see below)
-        Cannot unreasonably reduce the duty of care under §608.4225 Cannot eliminate the duty of loyalty or duty of care (under §605.04091, standards of conduct for members and managers), except for the rules that allowed under subsection 4 (see below)

Cannot eliminate the obligation of good faith and fair dealing, but can make standards of measurement for such obligation as long not manifestly unreasonable

Cannot vary requirement to wind up LLC’s business

Cannot restrict the rights of a person (other than manager, member or transferee of a member’s distributional interest) Cannot restrict the rights of a person, except as provided in the operating agreement
Cannot vary the capacity of LLC to sue or be sued
Cannot vary governing law
Cannot vary requirement, procedure, or other provisions regarding:-     Registered agents; orThe department, including records authorized or required to be delivered to the department for filing
-     Cannot vary the provisions regarding the signing and filing pursuant to judicial order
Cannot relieve or exonerate a person from liability for conduct involving bad faith, willful or intentional misconduct, or a knowing violation of law
Cannot vary the power of a person to disassociate, except to require notice of a person’s intent to withdraw (under §605.0602(1)) to be in a record
Cannot vary the grounds for judicial dissolution (as stated in chapter)
Cannot restrict the rights of a member to maintain an action under:-        The direct action of a member;-        A derivative action;-        Proper plaintiff;-        Special litigation committee (agreement can provide that the LLC may not appoint the committee, but cannot prevent the court from doing so);-        Proceeds and expenses; or

Voluntary dismissal or settlement; notice.

-        Cannot vary the right of a member to approve a merger, interest exchange or conversion
Cannot vary the contents of a plan of merger, interest exchange, conversion or domestication

Last Call to Take Advantage of Ultra-Low Rates for GRATs? An Article by Stephen S. Schilling, CFA and Tara Thompson Popernik, CFA, CFP of AllianceBernstein

People

Matt Gordon from AllianceBernstein’s Tampa office is a very well informed and dedicated advisor who has provided us with the following article prepared by AllianceBernstein’s amazing planning team.  Matt’s contact information is as follows:

Matthew Gordon
Bernstein Global Wealth Management
101 East Kennedy Blvd.
Suite 3200
Tampa, FL 33602
matthew.gordon@bernstein.com
Phone: 813-314-3328

Anyone considering a long-time GRAT or a QPRT should read this article and share it with clients and other advisors.

Steve S. Schilling is a Director in Bernstein’s Wealth Management Group and is based in the firm’s San Francisco office. He advises Bernstein’s Bay Area and Pacific Northwest clients regarding complex investment planning issues; his areas of expertise include diversification planning for holders of concentrated portfolios, multigenerational wealth transfer, philanthropy and pre-transaction planning. Schilling joined the firm in 2000 and has been a member of the Wealth Management Group since 2003, serving as an analyst and senior analyst before becoming a Director in 2009. Schilling earned a BA in economics from the University of California, Santa Barbara, and is a Chartered Financial Analyst charter holder.

Tara Thompson Popernik was named the Director of Research for the Wealth Management Group in 2011 and is responsible for leading research initiatives on investment planning and asset allocation issues facing high-net-worth families, family offices, and endowments and foundations. Previously, she was a wealth management specialist, and before that she was a senior investment planning analyst. Prior to joining the firm in 2003, Popernik was a paralegal in the Capital Markets Group of Cadwalader, Wickersham & Taft. She earned a BA with honors in comparative literature from Dartmouth College. Popernik is a CFA charter holder and a Certified Financial Planner certificant.

US investors interested in establishing a “zeroed-out” Grantor Retained Annuity Trust (GRAT) should consider acting fast to complete their transactions before rising interest-rates diminish their potential value—preferably before the end of July.

The “zeroed-out” GRAT has been a popular estate planning vehicle for many years because it can transfer wealth to the next generation while using little or none of the $5.25 million applicable exclusion amount (the money that you can give away either during your life or at death before gift or estate taxes kick in). That leaves all or most of the applicable exclusion available to shelter assets from estate tax. At an individual’s death, the cost basis for appreciated assets is increased to fair market value so the potential income tax on the appreciation is eliminated. This “step-up” has become even more valuable with the increase in US income tax rates effective 2013.

The key to a zeroed-out GRAT is that the present value of the annuity payments retained by the grantor must equal (or zero out) the value contributed to the GRAT, so that there is no taxable gift. Anything remaining in the trust after the annuities have been paid passes to the beneficiary’s gift tax-free. How large the annuity payments must be to zero-out the GRAT is based on current interest rates.  Lower interest rates are better because they lower the required annuity payments, and thus increase the chances that there will be something left over for heirs.

The Internal Revenue Service sets the required annuity rate for newly established GRATs each month, based on Treasury yields. The rate has fluctuated from an all-time high of 11.6% in 1989 to an all-time low of 1.0% in January 2013. The July rate of 1.4% reflects Treasury yields from May 15 through June 14, so it does not reflect the recent spike in bond yields; the August rate will.

Based on a methodology we believed to be similar to the IRS methodology, we predict that the August rate will be 2.0%, and, if current Treasury yields persist, the September rate will be 2.2%. So, there’s likely to be a significant benefit to completing a GRAT transaction before the end of July.

To give clients a sense of the large impact that interest rates can have on the success of longer-term GRATS, we estimated the remainder value of GRATs established under different historical conditions. In each case, a 10-year GRAT is established with $1 million invested in the S&P 500. For GRATs established in the quintile of months when the 7520 rate was lowest (between 1.2% and 2.6%), the median remainder value would have been about $2.1 million, almost four times the $533,000 median remainder value of GRATs established in the second quintile of months, when the 7520 rate was between 2.6% to 5.2%.*

[NOTE FROM THURSDAY REPORT EDITORS: We certainly hope that the interest rates will not go up to 5.2% any time soon! That is like having to pay $50 for a bucket of chicken!]

The good news is that there are still three weeks left to take advantage of the July rate, and the August rate will still fall within the lowest quintile of historical rates. But the window for locking in a low rate for a longer term GRAT strategy may be closing, as the days of hurdle rates below 2% may soon be at an end.

*This analysis includes 745 10-year periods, beginning monthly from 1941 through May 2003; using a proxy for the 7520 rate before 1989 based on IRS methodology. All strategies funded with $1 million. All assets are invested in an S&P 500 index. Wealth to beneficiaries is adjusted for inflation over the applicable time horizon.

The views expressed herein do not constitute, and should not be considered to be, legal or tax advice, and there is no relationship between AllianceBernstein and Colonel Sanders. The tax rules are complicated, and their impact on a particular individual may differ depending on the individual’s specific circumstances. Please consult with your legal or tax advisor regarding your specific situation. 

Click here to see our chapter on Grantor Retained Annuity Trusts in the Bloomberg BNA Estate Tax Planning in 2011 and 2012 book co-written by Alan S. Gassman, Kenneth J. Crotty and Christopher J. Denicolo.

Our Most Recent Seminar and Webinar Announcements

Below we have listed our most recent webinars and seminars for your reference.  We are also going to be sending these to you as a separate announcement.

BP OIL SPILL CLAIMS: AVOID MISTAKES AND MAXIMIZE CLAIMS

On Wednesday, July 24, 2013 at 12:30 p.m. please join John Goldsmith of the Trenam Kemker Law Firm and Alan Gassman for a 45 minute webinar regarding BP Oil Spill Claims.  There is a lot of criteria and options when seeking a claim and this webinar lays them out in a clear and understandable fashion. To register for the webinar please click here.

NOTE: This presentation was also given on Wednesday, July 17, 2013.  If you would like a copy of the video and the accompanying PowerPoint presentation please email Janine Gunyan at Janine@gassmanpa.com

THE 444 SHOW (a monthly online webinar series) on The Last Legislative Session and The Florida Bar’s Legislative Efforts

Please join us for the 444 Show on Thursday, August 22, 2013 at 4pm.  The 444 Show is a monthly webinar series sponsored by the Clearwater Bar Association and moderated by Alan S. Gassman.  Each show qualifies for 1 hour of continuing education credit.

We are pleased to welcome Sandra Diamond of Williamson, Diamond & Caton, PA., and Aimee Diazlyon and Jim Daughton who are the legislative consultants for The Florida Bar to this month’s show.  They will be speaking on the last legislative session and The Florida Bar’s legislative efforts.

To register for the webinar please click here.

WEDU 8th ANNUAL ESTATE & TAX PLANNING CONTINUING EDUCATION SEMINAR

Join speakers Daniel A Smith and Alan S. Gassman for the WEDU 8th Annual Estate and Tax Planning Seminar on Thursday, September 19, 2013.  The seminar starts at 7:30 am with a hot breakfast and goes until 11:30 am.  Tickets are $50 and includes breakfast.  Topics include: Coming Shifts in Estate Planning by Daniel A. Smith, Asset Protection by Alan S. Gassman and a panel discussion on Income Tax Reduction Strategies and 1041 Issues.

Daniel A. Smith’s extensive real-world experience brings his classroom information into immediate, practical, and applicable form. He specializes in integrating sales and relationship management with the complexities of estate planning, estate taxation, charitable giving, and investment management issues of the High Net Worth and Ultra High Net Worth client. Prior to joining Cannon in 1990, Daniel was a Trust Services Officer at First Hawaiian Bank and an Account Executive with Dean Witter Reynolds (now Morgan Stanley).  His years of experience with Cannon have added best practices from constant interaction with many of the nation’s top financial advisors and wealthy individuals.

When not teaching at Cannon Schools, Daniel is a frequent speaker at banks, trust companies, brokerage firms and other financial services companies nationwide. He also speaks at financial services conferences on estate planning, taxation, sales, sales management, quality service and industry trends. His work has been published in Trusts & EstatesRegistered Rep and other industry publications.  Daniel’s On Site training addresses sales and service issues and technical topics related to personal trust, investments, and estate planning. His consulting work is focused on developing custom sales presentation materials and computer-based training.

For more information and to register please visit http://www.wedu.org/events/ceseminar/

Lawyers in History: The Impact of Law Practice on their Lives and Careers: John Penn

Penn

As we continue to celebrate the month of July and the birth of our nation we recognize one of the signers of the Declaration of Independence, John Penn. Penn was born on May 17th, 1741 in Caroline County, Virginia. John Penn is not a man that is commonly recognized for his participation in the signing of the Declaration of Independence. In fact he is commonly mistaken for another John Penn, the grandson of William Penn, the founder of Pennsylvania. Although cast in the shadows, Penn was a courageous man that left his mark on one of the most important documents signed in United States history.

In addition, Penn accomplished many feats for a single child that came from a family that did not put education first. Penn attended a common school for only two years because his father did not consider education to be of importance. However, when his father died and his widowed mother became unable to support and care for herself and the farm that was left behind, Penn sought advice from his uncle, Edmund Pendleton, who was an esteemed attorney (stay tuned to a future Thursday Report on Edmund Pendleton and his practice of law). Pendleton was known for writing George Washington’s will the night before Washington was appointed Commander in chief by the Continental Congress and was described by his friend Thomas Jefferson as “the greatest orator” in the colonies. Penn, motivated by his father’s death, followed in the footsteps of his uncle, and with exposure to some of the finest lawyer’s in Virginia and one of the best libraries throughout the colonies, Penn became a member of the Virginia Bar only three years after his father’s death at the age of 21.

After practicing law in Virginia for twelve years, Penn moved his family to Williamsboro, North Carolina, for reasons that are not entirely clear. However, one reason Penn may have relocated may be due to the charges he was facing in Virginia for being disrespectful and making treasonous remarks about King George. (Anyone who is reading this wins a prize by clicking the next link.) It was believed that Penn made these remarks in a public meeting where he was then reported to royal authorities regarding his opposition to the King’s taxes and duties being imposed on the colonies.  Penn was found guilty and fined one penny, however he refused to pay the fine.

Penn was on the fast track for independence and his move to North Carolina gave him the opportunity to express his interest in liberty and to speak to those who would support him in his journey. After being accepted and recognized as a leader in North Carolina through his law firm and his role in politics, Penn arrived in Congress and declared, “My first wish is for America to be free.” The following are a few of Penn’s accomplishments:

  • Penn served in the Continental Congress for six years;
  • He signed the Declaration of Independence
  • He signed the Articles of Confederation
  • He signed the Halifax Resolves (the North Carolina Constitution)
  • He was virtual dictator of North Carolina at what many consider to be the turning point of the American Revolution in 1781-1782.

After being part of one of the most historical moments in United States history and serving in Congress for six years, John Penn died near his home in North Carolina on September 14th, 1788.

Here is the link referred to above.

Applicable Federal Rates

Please click here to view a chart of this month’s, last month’s, and the preceding month’s Applicable Federal Rates, because for a sale you can use the lowest of the 3.

Seminars and Webinars

  • MEDICAL EDUCATION RESOURCES PRIMARY CARE CONFERENCE

Alan Gassman will be speaking on the topic of LEGAL, TAX AND FINANCIAL BOOT CAMP FOR THE MEDICAL PRACTICE – A SPECIAL TAX, ESTATE PLANNING AND LAW CONFERENCE FOR PRIMARY CARE PHYSICIANS

Date: July 19 – 21, 2013 (Friday – Sunday mornings; Have fun at Disney in the afternoons and we will not ask what you do at night!)

Topic:         1)             The 10 Biggest Mistakes That Physicians Make In Their Investments and Business Planning

                                                9am – 10am on Friday, July 19, 2013

                    2)             Lawsuits 101

                                                10:10 am – 11:10 am on Friday, July 19, 2013

                    3)             Essential Estate Planning

                                                11:10 am – 11:40 am on Friday, July 19, 2013

                    4)             Asset Entity Planning for Creditor Protection and Buy Sell Arrangements

                                                10:10 am – 11:10 am on Saturday, July 20, 2013

                    5)             50 Ways to Leave Your Overhead – How to Enhance Medical Practice Profitability

                                                11:40 am – 12:40 pm on Saturday, July 20, 2013

                    6)             Stark Naked, or Well Prepared? – Health Law Compliance

                                                9:00 am – 10:00 am on Sunday, July 21, 2013

Location: Disney’s Boardwalk Resort, Orlando, Florida

Topics by Other Speakers: 2013 Tax Changes, Tax Deductions for Physicians, Medical Practice Financial Management, Physician Compensation, Tax Structures for Medical Practices and Retirement Plan Options for Physicians.

Additional Information:  For more information please visit www.MER.org  Please note that the program qualifies for continuing education credit for physicians.

  • THE JOINT EXEMPT STEP-UP TRUST (JEST)

Date: Wednesday, August 21, 2013 | 12pm Eastern/9am Pacific

Sponsor: The Ultimate Estate Planner, Inc.

Additional Information:  If you would like to attend this teleconference please click here to register

  • NEW CHANGES TO THE FLORIDA TRUSTS & ESTATES TAX AND DURABLE POWER OF ATTORNEY ACT

Date: Monday, July 29, 2013 | 12:30 p.m.

Presenters: Tami Conetta, Esq. and Barry Spivey, Esq.

Location: Online webinar

Additional Information: To register for the webinar please click here.

  • AVOIDING THE TRAPS IN EMR/TECH CONTRACTS….NOW YOU TELL ME I’M STUCK WITH THIS FOR 5 YEARS!

Date: Tuesday, September 10, 2013 | 5:00 p.m and Thursday, September 12, 2013 | 12:30 p.m. (Each webinar will last 30 minutes)

Presenter: Sandra Greenblatt, Board Certified Health Lawyer

Location: Online webinar.

Additional Information: To register for the Tuesday, September 10, 2013, 5pm webinar please click here. To register for the Thursday, September 10, 2013, 12:30pm webinar please click here.

  • NIP & TUCK: MAKING THE CALL ON OFFICE-BASED SURGERY

Date: Wednesday, September 18, 2013

Presenter: Cheryl White, RN, BS, MSHL, LHRM, LNCC, MSCC, DFHRMPS and Lester Perling, J.D., MHA

Location: Online webinar

Additional Information:  To register for the webinar please click here

  • NORTH SUNCOAST FICPA MONTHLY MEETING

Date: Wednesday, September 18, 2013, 4:30 – 6:30 p.m.

Speakers: Alan Gassman will be speaking on the Affordable Care Act.

Location: Chili’s in Port Richey

Additional Information: To attend this seminar please email agassman@gassmanpa.com

  • WEDU ESTATE PLANNING SEMINAR

Gassman Law Associates meets Big Bird – Sesame Street vs. Wall Street?

Alan Gassman will be speaking on the topic of ASSET PROTECTION – ESSENTIAL KNOWLEDGE AND HOT TOPICS

Date: Thursday, September 19, 2013 | 7:30 am – 11:30 am

Speakers/Topics: Daniel A. Smith of Cannon Financial Institute will speak on Coming Shifts in Estate Planning, and Alan S. Gassman will speak on Asset Protection.  There will also be a panel discussion on Income Tax Reduction Strategies & 1041 Issues.

Location: WEDU PBS Berkman Family Broadcast Center, 1300 N Blvd., Tampa, FL

Additional Information:  For more information or to register for this seminar please click here

  • NOTRE DAME TAX INSTITUTE

Jerry Hesch and Alan Gassman will be speaking on the topic of INTERESTING INTEREST QUESTIONS, PLANNING WITH LOW INTEREST LOANS, PRIVATE ANNUITIES, DEFECTIVE GRANTOR TRUSTS, AND PRIVATE AND COMMERCIAL ANNUITIES

      Date: Wednesday, October 16 through Friday, October 18, 2013

      Location: Notre Dame College, South Bend, Indiana

Additional Information: Professor Jerry Hesch’s Notre Dame Tax Institute will once again emphasize the importance of income tax planning and implications in addition to estate, estate tax, and related concepts.

Email us now to get your football tickets to the Notre Dame-USC game on October 19.

We welcome questions, comments and suggestions for the presentation that we are assisting Jerry in preparing and presenting.

  • PINELLAS COUNTY ESTATE PLANNING COUNCIL SEMINAR

Alan Gassman will be speaking on the topic of HOT TOPICS FOR ESTATE PLANNERS

Date: Wednesday, October 23, 2013 | 8:00 am – 12:00 p.m. (60 MINUTE PRESENTATION)

Location: TBD

Additional Information: To attend the meeting or to receive information on joining the Council please click here or

email agassman@gassmanpa.com

  • 2013 MOTE VASCULAR SURGERY FELLOWS – FACTS OF LIFE TALK SEMINAR FOR FIRST YEAR SURGEONS

Alan Gassman will be speaking on the topic of ESTATE, MEDICAL PRACTICE, RETIREMENT, TAX, INSURANCE, AND BUY/SELL PLANNING – THE EARLIER YOU START THE SOONER YOU WILL BE SECURE

Date: October 25 – 27, 2013 | Times TBD

Location: TBD

Additional Information: Please contact agassman@gassmanpa.com for additional information.

  • NEW JERSEY INSTITUTE FOR CONTINUING LEGAL EDUCATION (ICLE) HEALTH LAW SYMPOSIUM – AN ALL DAY SEMINAR

Alan Gassman will be speaking on the topic of WHAT HEALTH LAWYERS NEED TO KNOW ABOUT FLORIDA LAW

Date: Friday, November 1, 2013 | 9am – 5pm (Mr. Gassman speaks from 1:10 pm until 2:10 p.m.)

Location: Seton Hall Law School, Newark, New Jersey

Additional Information: Seton Hall University in South Orange, New Jersey was founded in 1856, and they have remodeled since.  Today, Seton Hall has over 10,000 students in its undergraduate, graduate and law school programs and is in close proximity to several Kentucky Fried Chicken locations.

  • NEW JERSEY INSTITUTE FOR CONTINUING LEGAL EDUCATION (ICLE)_SPECIAL 3 HOUR SESSION

Alan Gassman will be speaking on the topic of WHAT NEW JERSEY LAWYERS NEED TO KNOW ABOUT FLORIDA LAW – A 3 HOUR OVERVIEW BY ALAN S. GASSMAN

Date: Saturday, November 2, 2013

Location: Wilshire Grand Hotel, West Orange, New Jersey | 9am – 12pm

Additional Information: Please tell all of your friends, neighbors and enemies in New Jersey to come out to support this important presentation for the New Jersey Bar Association.  We will include discussions of airboats, how to get an alligator off of your driveway, how to peel a navel orange and what collard greens and grits are. For additional information please email agassman@gassmanpa.com

  • SALT LAKE CITY ESTATE PLANNING COUNCIL’S FALL ONE DAY “TAX AND DEDUCTIBILITY OF YOUR SKI TRIP” INSTITUTE

Alan Gassman will be speaking on the topic of PRACTICAL ESTATE PLANNING, WITH A $5.25 MILLION EXEMPTION AMOUNT

Date: Thursday, November 7, 2013

Location: Hilton Downtown Salt Lake City, Utah

Additional Information:  Please support this one day annual seminar conveniently located near skiing and tourism opportunities.  If you would like to attend this event or receive the materials please email agassman@gassmanpa.com

NOTABLE SEMINARS PRESENTED BY OTHERS:

  • 48th ANNUAL HECKERLING INSTITUTE ON ESTATE PLANNING SEMINAR

Date: January 13 – 17, 2014

Location:  Orlando World Center Marriott, Orlando, Florida

Sponsor: University of Miami School of Law

Additional Information: For more information please visit: http://www.law.miami.edu/heckerling/

  • 16th ANNUAL ALL CHILDREN’S HOSPITAL ESTATE, TAX, LEGAL & FINANCIAL PLANNING SEMINAR

Date: Wednesday, February 12, 2014

Location: All Children’s Hospital Education and Conference Center, St. Petersburg, Florida with remote location live interactive viewings in Tampa, Sarasota, New Port Richey, Lakeland, and Bangkok, Thailand

Sponsor: All Children’s Hospital

  • THE UNIVERSITY OF FLORIDA TAX INSTITUTE

Date: February 19 – 21, 2014

Location: Grand Hyatt, Tampa, Florida

Sponsor:  UF Law alumni and UF Graduate Tax Program

Additional Information:  Here is what UF is saying about the program on its website: “The UF Tax Institute will provide tax practitioners and other leading tax, business and estate planning professionals with a program that covers the most current issues and planning ideas with a practical, informative, state-of-the-art approach.  The Institute’s schedule will devote separate days or half days to individual income tax issues, entity tax issues and estate planning issues.  Speakers and presentations will be announced as the program date nears to ensure coverage of the most timely and significant topics.  UF Law alumni have formed the Florida Tax Education Foundation, Inc., a nonprofit corporation, to organize the conference.”

  • 1st ANNUAL ESTATE PLANNER’S DAY AT AVE MARIA SCHOOL OF LAW

Speakers:  Speakers will include Professor Jerry Hesch, Alan Gassman and others.

Date: April 25, 2014

Location: Ave Maria School of Law, Naples, Florida

Sponsors: Ave Maria School of Law, Collier County Estate Planning Council and more to be announced.

Additional Information: For more information on this event please contact Jonathan Gopman at jonathan.gopman@akerman.com.  We thank Jonathan for all of his hard work to put this very special day together.

For details about each event, please visit us online at gassmanlawassociates.com/newsandevents.html

 

The Thursday Report – July 11, 2013, Same-Sex Chart and Gandolfini

Posted on: July 11th, 2013

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“Bringing New Meaning to Thursdays Throughout The Week – It’s Not Just the Day Before Friday Anymore!”

Why Many Same-Sex Couples Will Be Looking to Leave Florida and Where They May Go by Christopher J. Denicolo, J.D., LL.M.

What Your Clients Want to Know About James Gandolfini – A look at his Last Will and Testament and What Was Wrong With It – A LISI Article by Bruce Steiner

Ken Crotty’s LLC Clinic

Registration is Now Open for the Notre Dame Tax & Estate Planning Institute in October

Back by Popular Demand – Join us for our August 23, 2013 Presentation of the JEST Trust System as part of Phil’s Ultimate Estate Planner, including New Materials and Forms

Lawyers in History: The Impact of Law Practice on Their Lives and Careers – Aaron Burr

Today’s Thursday Report concentrates on two very important recent developments for estate tax planners, and providing our readers with more information and thinking than has been published by the conventional press and industries to date.

Clients want to know how these laws will affect them, their families, and their friends and colleagues.

We hope that today’s issue gives you solid information and planning ideas that you can offer to same-sex couples, and a thorough and interesting discussion of James Gandolfini’s estate plan, and what can be learned from this. 

We welcome all comments, questions (and complaints about the Kentucky Fried Chicken jokes) that we receive. 

The best suggestion award in response to this Thursday Report will be the coupon found below.  DON’T LEAVE HOME WITHOUT IT

 Certificate.FINAL

We welcome contributions for future Thursday Report topics. If you are interested in making a contribution as a guest writer, please email Janine Ruggiero at Janine@gassmanpa.com.

 This report and other Thursday Reports can be found on our website at www.gassmanlawassociates.com.

Why Many Same-Sex Couples Will Soon Be Looking to Leave Florida and Where They May Go

by Christopher J. Denicolo, J.D., LL.M.

            Almost everyone reading this report knows that the U.S. Supreme Court has held that same-sex couples cannot be denied equal protection under Constitution if they were legally married in a state that allows same-sex marriage, and reside in a state that recognizes same-sex marriage.

Florida does not recognize same-sex marriage, so same-sex couples who have been married in one of the states (or foreign jurisdictions) that recognize same-sex marriages will not be considered as married for federal tax and other federal law purposes if they reside in Florida at the time of death.

There are many other federal and state rights that are impacted by whether a validly married same-sex couple resides in a state that recognizes same-sex marriages.

In the Windsor case, Thea Spyer and Edith Windsor lawfully married in Ontario, Canada under Canadian law, while they resided in New York.  While New York did not allow same-sex marriages at the time, it did recognize same-sex marriages that were legal in out-of-state jurisdictions.  The IRS therefore lost its case against Ms. Windsor, who claimed the estate tax marital deduction as being a “spouse.”

Significantly more detail on the above can be found by clicking here.

The Windsor case leaves Florida same-sex couples in a quandary.  Do they stay in Florida, unable to make significant gifts to one another, and risking the payment of federal estate tax on the death of a wealthy spouse, or should they move their domicile, and thus their primary residence, to a state that does recognize same-sex marriages?

One question is what states they can move to, and how the tax law and creditor protection laws apply in each such state.

We have a chart of the states that recognize same-sex marriages, and which of these states also recognize tenancy by the entireties (for creditor protection purposes), have state inheritance and estate taxes, and have state income tax imposed upon individual income.  The chart can be accessed by clicking here.

Many Florida estate planning lawyers and advisors will be structuring same-sex couples’ arrangements with the help of legal counsel in the state where our clients become domiciled.

We are hopeful that the Florida legislature will recognize this quandary and enable same-sex Floridians who have chosen to be married in other jurisdictions to be recognized as married for the purposes of Florida law.

We welcome any questions, comments and suggestions on this important issue.

What Your Clients Want to Know About James Gandolfini – A Look at his Last Will and Testament and What Was Wrong With It – A LISI Article by Bruce Steiner

 Bruce Steiner

            With the passing of actor James Gandolfini come some interesting reports regarding his estate.  There are a few lessons to be learned from Mr. Gandolfini’s Last Will and Testament including some very expensive ones for his family.

Bruce Steiner, an attorney with Kleinberg, Kaplan, Wolff & Cohen, P.C. in New York City wrote the attached article for LISI and can be reviewed by clicking here.

Bruce Steiner has over 35 years of experience in the areas of taxation, estate planning, business succession planning and estate and trust administration. He is a frequent lecturer at continuing education programs for bar associations, CPAs and other professionals. He is a commentator for Leimberg Information Services, Inc., is a member of the editorial advisory board of Trusts & Estates, is a technical advisor for Ed Slott’s IRA Advisor, and has written numerous articles for Estate Planning, BNA Tax Management’s Estates, Gifts & Trusts Journal,Trusts & Estates, the Journal of TaxationProbate & PropertyTAXES, the CPA Journal, the CLU Journal and other professional journals. Bruce has been quoted in various publications includingForbesThe New York TimesWall Street Journal, Daily Tax Report, Lawyers Weekly,Bloomberg’s Wealth ManagerFinancial PlanningKiplinger’s Retirement Report, Newsday, theNew York Post, the Naples Daily News, Individual Investor, TheStreet.com, and Dow Jones (formerly CBS) Market Watch. Bruce has served on the professional advisory boards of several major charitable organizations and was named a New York Super Lawyer in 2010, 2011 and 2012.  Mr. Steiner can be reached at 212-880-9818 or via email at bsteiner@kkwc.com

Ken Crotty’s LLC Clinic

            Each week Ken Crotty will be providing a discussion each week on aspects of the new LLC Act and how these will impact clients and practitioners.  This week he discusses the New LLC Act and when it goes into effect.

            Effective Date of the New LLC Act

Florida’s new LLC Act will be effective as of January 1, 2014, for any LLCs formed on or after January 1, 2014.  For LLCs formed on or before December 31, 2013, there is some flexibility.  The latest the Act will apply to these LLCs is on January 1, 2015, and members and managers of these LLCs will have until this date to modify the LLC’s governing documents to comply with the Act and to avoid unintended results.

LLC’s formed on or before December 31, 2013, may elect to have the Act apply to the LLC at anytime between January 1, 2014, and January 1, 2015.  It is important to note, however, that if the LLC elects to have the Act apply then the entire Act applies to the LLC.  It is not possible to pick and choose certain provisions of the Act and elect them to apply to the LLC.  The election is an all or nothing decision.  Because of this, members and managers of LLCs that are in existence on or before December 31, 2013, should review their governing documents to be certain that there will not be unintended consequences of electing to have the Act apply before January 1, 2015, and should modify their documents accordingly before the election to have the Act apply is made.

Registration is Now Open for the Notre Dame Tax & Estate Planning Institute in October

Professor Jerry Hesch’s Notre Dame Tax Institute will once again provide significant income tax planning technique coverage in addition to estate, estate tax, and related topics.  The Institute is held in South Bend, Indiana each fall. This year the dates are Wednesday, October 16 to Friday, October 18, 2013.

Alan Gassman will be working with Professor Hesch in preparing and presenting Interesting Interest Questions, Planning with Low Interest Loans, Self-Cancelling Installment Notes, Private Annuities, Defective Grantor Trusts, and Similar Issues That Arise in a Low Interest Rate Environment.

Other speakers and their topics include:

  • Maintaining and Obtaining Income Tax Basis, by Turney Berry, Louisville, KY
  • Planning with Portability: What Do the Numbers Show? by Diana S.C. Zeydel, Miami, FL
  • The Tax Apportionment Clause: Often the Most Important Provision in the Will, by Jonathan Blattmachr, New York, NY
  • Structuring Trustee Powers to Avoid a Tax Catastrophe (Or 20 Things You Need to Know About Selecting Trustees and Structuring Trustee Powers) by Steve Akers, Dallas, TX
  • Myths, Mysteries and Mistakes: Common Transfer Tax Concepts That Are Not Well-Known or Understood, by Professor Jerry Pennell, Atlanta, GA
  • Current Developments of Importance to Estate Planners, by Professor Jeffery Pennell, Atlanta, GA
  • Fiduciary’s Guide to Retirement Benefits, by Natalie B. Choate, Boston, MA
  • Evaluating Mistakes Made with Commonly-Used Techniques (The Screw-Ups) and Evaluating the Risks Associated with Certain Techniques, by David Handler, Chicago, IL and Professor David Herzig, Valparaiso, IN
  • Yours, Mine and Ours: Estate Planning for Couples in a Second Marriage, by Eric A. Manterfield, Indianapolis, IN
  • Prenuptial Agreements and Divorce: A Minefield Or A Solution? by Linda Ravdin, Washington, DC
  • Monitoring Trustees: When, Why and How to Use a Trust Protector, by Professor Larry Frolik, Pittsburgh, PA
  • Special Needs Planning: What Every Estate Planning Professional Needs to Know, by Bernard Krooks, New York, NY
  • The Bet Not to Live: Using Private Annuities and SCINs for Individuals Not Expected to Survive Their Life Expectancy, by Jerome Deener, Roseland, NJ
  • Evaluating Premium Financed Life Insurance, by Rebecca Ryan, Chicago, IL
  • The Dueling Transferors’ Problem: The Uncertain GST Tax Consequences and Planning Implications of Having A Beneficiary Assign an Interest in a Trust, by Austin Bramwell, New York, NY
  • Evaluating Private Placement Life Insurance in a High Investment Tax Environment, by Leslie Giordani, Austin, TX
  • Valuation of Large Companies: Blockage and Other Factors, Professor Ashok Abbot, Morgantown, WV
  • Avoid Being a Defendant: Estate Planning Malpractice and Ethical Concerns by Professor Gerry Beyer, Lubbock, TX
  • An Estate Planning Trilogy: Digital Assets, Guns and Pets, by Professor Gerry Beyer, Lubbock, TX
  • The Self-Management Structure: A Potent and New Age Solution to the Business Succession Planning Conundrum, by Avi Kestenbaum, Mineola, NY
  • Don’t End Up as Road Kill: Surviving Ethical Challenges in Transfers Between Family Members, by Charles “Skip” Fox, Charlottesville, VA
  • Converting Asset Protection to Asset Collection: A Creditor’s Perspective, by Melissa Langa, Boston, MA
  • It’s Yours If You Do As I Say: Conditional Gifts and In Terrorem Clauses, by Professor William LaPiana, New York, NY
  • Section 1411: Net Investment Income Tax, David Kirk, Washington, DC (invited)
  • Maintaining and Estate Planning Practice in the 21st Century in a $5 Million Exemption Era, Robert Romanoff, Chicago, IL
  • Using DINGs, NINGs, and Other Trusts to Reduce or Eliminate State Income Taxes, by Neil Schoenblum, Las Vegas, NV and Professor Jerry Schoenblum, Nashville, TN
  • Drafting Tips That Minimize The Federal Income Tax on Trusts, by James Blasé, St. Louis, MO
  • International Tax Planning: A Practical Approach, by Charles Schultz, Chicago, IL

To register for the Institute please click here and don’t forget to book your tickets to the Notre Dame vs. USC game on October 19.

Back by Popular Demand – Join us for our August 23, 2013 Presentation of the JEST Trust System as part of Phil’s Ultimate Estate Planner, including New Materials and Forms

Our first teleseminar with Phil’s Ultimate was widely received and we were asked to come back and present our materials again in a teleconference on Friday, August 23, 2013 at 12:00 p.m.

You can sign up for the teleconference with Phil’s Ultimate Estate Planner, which costs $139 (or $189 for printed materials and CD), by going to the website of Phil’s Ultimate Estate Planner, which can be viewed by clicking here.

Phil’s ultimate is also offering a special package.  The JEST Legal Document Form Package Plus Teleconference Participation (and CD) for a discounted rated of $395 (regularly $495).  The package contains the JEST legal document form package, teleconference participation, downloadable PDF materials, downloadable MP3 recording and a CD-ROM sent 5-7 days following the teleconference.

The JEST trust system permits a married couple living in Florida, or other non-community property states, to hold “joint assets” under one trust agreement that allows a clear step-up in basis and credit shelter trust funding from the share of the first dying spouse. The JEST trust system is also designed to facilitate using the share of the surviving spouse to fund a “capitalized credit shelter trust B” that we believe makes use of the remainder of the first dying spouse’s estate tax exemption using the same rational that the IRS has used for a technical advice memorandum and four private letter rulings, while also qualifying the assets from the surviving spouse for a step-up in basis, if our reasoning and the technique we have developed is correct.

The JEST trust and its assets will not qualify as tenancy by the entireties assets for creditor protection planning, and not all advisors will feel confident that the IRS will accept the intended treatment, but if our technique is accepted in the same manner as the technical advice memorandum and four private letter rulings then a full funding of a credit shelter trust and a full stepped up basis for joint trust property can be achieved. You cannot get what you do not ask for!

Lawyers in History: The Impact of Law Practice on their Lives and Careers: Aaron Burr

Burr with words

            On this day in 1804, Aaron Burr fatally shot his long-time political opponent, Alexander Hamilton in a duel.

Upon graduation from college at the young age of 17, Burr began to study law.  Upon hearing about the clashes with the British troops, Burr joined the Continental Army.  He served between the years 1775 and 1779 and had much success.  He saved an entire Brigade of men, including long-time friend, Alexander Hamilton, from capture by the British when they invaded Manhattan, but Burr never received a commendation for his actions.

Due to his declining health, he was forced to leave the Continental Army.  He then took up his study of law and was admitted to the New York Bar in 1782.  He practiced law in New York City and served in the New York State Assembly.  In 1789 he was appointed New York State Attorney General and in 1791 was elected a U.S. Senator.

In 1796 Burr ran for Vice President, only to come in fourth behind John Adams (elected President), Thomas Jefferson (elected Vice President) and Thomas Pinckney.  Upon his defeat he returned to the Senate and served until 1799.  During his time in the Senate he cooperated with Holland Land Company to obtain a law to permit aliens to hold and convey land.  During this time he became a key player in New York politics.

In 1799 he also founded the Bank of the Manhattan Company which later merged into Chase Manhattan Bank and eventually became JPMorgan Chase.  He did this under the auspices that he was forming a water company, which was needed in New York.  He commissioned the support of Alexander Hamilton and other Federalists.  Shortly after approval, Burr changed the charter to include banking knowing all along that a water company was not in his plans.  This was the start of Hamilton’s malevolence for Burr, calling his actions dishonest.

Because of his role in the political arena of New York, Burr was asked by Thomas Jefferson and James Madison to help them with the election of 1800.  He enlisted the help of social clubs to help Jefferson and Madison and through those actions, Burr is credited as being the father of modern political campaigning.

He was later placed on the ballot for the 1800 election and became Vice President under Thomas Jefferson, although Jefferson never trusted him and did not consult him on important matters.  Burr, however, as President of the Senate, was seen as even-handed and fair, especially during the impeachment trial of Justice Samuel Chase so Jefferson’s distrust of Burr was seen as unfounded.

Thomas Jefferson dropped Burr from his ticket in the 1804 election and Burr instead ran for Governor of New York state.  He lost that election to Morgan Lewis and blamed his loss on a personal smear campaign by prior Governor George Clinton, who believed that Burr entertained a Federalist succession movement in New York.  In April of the same year, the Albany Register, published a letter from Dr. Charles D. Cooper to Philip Schuyler, which relayed Alexander Hamilton’s judgment that Burr was “a dangerous man, and one who ought not to be trusted with the reins of government.”  Burr then sent a letter to his long-time friend, Alexander Hamilton asking for clarification.  Hamilton responded back that Burr should give specifics of Hamilton’s remarks and not Cooper’s.  The two exchanged several more letters escalating into Burr demanding that Hamilton retract any statement that would denigrate Burr’s honor over the past 15 years.  Hamilton refused and Burr challenged him to a duel, which had long been outlawed in New York state.  The two decided to hold their duel in New Jersey, even though it had been outlawed there as well.  The penalty for dueling in New York was death, whereas the penalty for dueling in New Jersey was less severe.

On July 11, 1804, Alexander Hamilton and Aaron Burr met outside of Weekhawken, New Jersey.  It is said that it was hard to figure out which gun was fired fist in the duel, as the shots were that close.  Alexander Hamilton missed his mark, blaming the sun and his placement in the duel.  Aaron Burr did not miss his mark.  He shot Hamilton in the stomach and Hamilton died the next day.  Burr was charged with multiple crimes including murder in both New York and New Jersey but he was never tried in either state.

In 1805 when his term as Vice President was over, Burr journeyed to the Western Frontier and met with General James Wilkinson, who was an agent for the Spanish.  It is said that during their meeting  Burr and Wilkinson had plotted to establish an independent nation.  To begin they wanted to seize territory from the Spanish in what is now Louisiana.  In the fall of 1806, Burr led a group of well-armed colonists toward New Orleans.  This move prompted an investigation by the government.  In an attempt to save himself, General Wilkinson turned on Burr and sent notice to Washington of what Burr was up to.  In February of 1807 Burr was arrested for treason.  He was tried in a U.S. circuit court in Virginia but was acquitted.

Although he was acquitted, he was seen as a traitor to his nation.  Burr fled to Europe for many years, before returning to New York and his law practice.

Although Burr was instrumental in the Revolutionary War, was an attorney, served many seats in the U.S. Government and was tried and acquitted for treason, he is perhaps best known for his duel with Alexander Hamilton.

 Duel with words

Applicable Federal Rates

Please click here to view a chart of this month’s, last month’s, and the preceding month’s Applicable Federal Rates, because for a sale you can use the lowest of the 3.

Seminars and Webinars

  • BP OIL SPILL CLAIMS – AVOID MISTAKES AND MAXIMIZE CLAIMS

Date: Wednesday, July 17, 2013 | 5:00 p.m. – 5:30 p.m.

Presenters: John Goldsmith, Esq. and Alan S. Gassman

Location: Online webinar

Additional Information:  To register for this webinar please click here.[ https://www2.gotomeeting.com/register/209179266]

 

  • MEDICAL EDUCATION RESOURCES PRIMARY CARE CONFERENCE

 

Alan Gassman will be speaking on the topic of LEGAL, TAX AND FINANCIAL BOOT CAMP FOR THE MEDICAL PRACTICE – A SPECIAL TAX, ESTATE PLANNING AND LAW CONFERENCE FOR PRIMARY CARE PHYSICIANS

 

Date: July 19 – 21, 2013 (Friday – Sunday mornings; Have fun at Disney in the afternoons and we will not ask what you do at night!)

 

Topic:         1)             The 10 Biggest Mistakes That Physicians Make In Their Investments and Business Planning

9am – 10am on Friday, July 19, 2013

 

2)             Lawsuits 101

                                                10:10 am – 11:10 am on Friday, July 19, 2013

 

3)             Essential Estate Planning

                                                11:10 am – 11:40 am on Friday, July 19, 2013

 

4)             Asset Entity Planning for Creditor Protection and Buy Sell Arrangements

10:10 am – 11:10 am on Saturday, July 20, 2013

 

                    5)             50 Ways to Leave Your Overhead – How to Enhance Medical Practice Profitability

11:40 am – 12:40 pm on Saturday, July 20, 2013

 

                    6)             Stark Naked, or Well Prepared? – Health Law Compliance

9:00 am – 10:00 am on Sunday, July 21, 2013

 

Location: Disney’s Boardwalk Resort, Orlando, Florida

 

Topics by Other Speakers: 2013 Tax Changes, Tax Deductions for Physicians, Medical Practice Financial Management, Physician Compensation, Tax Structures for Medical Practices and Retirement Plan Options for Physicians.

 

Additional Information:  For more information please visit www.MER.org  Please note that the program qualifies for continuing education credit for physicians.

 

  • THE JOINT EXEMPT STEP-UP TRUST (JEST)

Date: Friday, August 23, 2013 | 12pm Eastern/9am Pacific

Sponsor: The Ultimate Estate Planner, Inc.

Additional Information:  If you would like to attend this teleconference please click here to register [http://ultimateestateplanner.com/lawyer/Teleconference_Registration_cp8532.htm]

  • AVOIDING THE TRAPS IN EMR/TECH CONTRACTS….NOW YOU TELL ME I’M STUCK WITH THIS FOR 5 YEARS!

 

Date: Tuesday, September 10, 2013 | 5:00 p.m and Thursday, September 12, 2013 | 12:30 p.m. (Each webinar will last 30 minutes)

 

Presenter: Sandra Greenblatt, Board Certified Health Lawyer

 

Location: Online webinar.

 

Additional Information: To register for the Tuesday, September 10, 2013, 5pm webinar please click here [ https://www2.gotomeeting.com/register/878841962] .  To register for the Thursday, September 12, 2013, 12:30 p.m. webinar please click here [https://www2.gotomeeting.com/register/706396738]

 

  • WEDU ESTATE PLANNING SEMINAR

 

Gassman Law Associates meets Big Bird – Sesame Street vs. Wall Street?

 

Alan Gassman will be speaking on the topic of ASSET PROTECTION – ESSENTIAL KNOWLEDGE AND HOT TOPICS

 

Leading trust law expert Bruce Stone, Esq. will also speak on a topic to be determined.

 

Date: Thursday, September 19, 2013 | 7:30 am – 11:30 am

 

Location: TBD

 

Additional Information:  If you would like to sign up for this seminar please email agassman@gassmanpa.com

 

  • NOTRE DAME TAX & ESTATE PLANNING INSTITUTE

 

Jerry Hesch and Alan Gassman will be speaking on the topics of INTERESTING INTEREST QUESTIONS AND PLANNING WITH LOW INTEREST LOANS, PRIVATE ANNUITIES, DEFECTIVE GRANTOR TRUSTS, AND PRIVATE AND COMMERCIAL ANNUITIES

 

Date: Wednesday, October 16 through Friday, October 18, 2013

 

Location: Notre Dame College, South Bend, Indiana

 

Additional Information: Professor Jerry Hesch’s Notre Dame Tax Institute will once again emphasize the importance of income tax planning and implications in addition to estate, estate tax, and related concepts.   To register for the Institute please click here [http://law.nd.edu/alumni/continuing-legal-education/] and don’t forget to get your football tickets to the Notre Dame-USC game on October 19.

We welcome questions, comments and suggestions for the presentation that we are assisting Jerry in preparing and presenting.

 

  • PINELLAS COUNTY ESTATE PLANNING COUNCIL CONFERENCE

 

Alan Gassman will be speaking on the topic of HOT TOPICS FOR ESTATE PLANNERS

 

Date: Wednesday, October 23, 2013 | 8:00 am – 12:00 p.m. (60 MINUTE PRESENTATION)

 

Location: TBD

 

Additional Information: To attend the meeting or to receive information on joining the Council please click here [http://www.pinellascountyepc.org/displayevent.web?EventID=7141] or email agassman@gassmanpa.com

 

  • 2013 MOTE VASCULAR SURGERY FELLOWS – FACTS OF LIFE TALK SEMINAR FOR FIRST YEAR SURGEONS

 

Alan Gassman will be speaking on the topic of ESTATE, MEDICAL PRACTICE, RETIREMENT, TAX, INSURANCE, AND BUY/SELL PLANNING – THE EARLIER YOU START PLANNING THE SOONER YOU WILL BE SECURE

 

Date: October 25 – 27, 2013 | Times TBD

 

Location: TBD

 

Additional Information: Please contact agassman@gassmanpa.com for additional information.

 

  • NEW JERSEY INSTITUTE FOR CONTINUING LEGAL EDUCATION (ICLE) HEALTH LAW SYMPOSIUM – AN ALL DAY SEMINAR

 

Alan Gassman will be speaking on the topic of WHAT HEALTH LAWYERS NEED TO KNOW ABOUT FLORIDA LAW

 

Date: Friday, November 1, 2013 | 9am – 5pm (Mr. Gassman speaks from 1:10 pm until 2:10 p.m.)

 

Location: Seton Hall Law School, Newark, New Jersey

 

Additional Information: Seton Hall University in South Orange, New Jersey was founded in 1856, and they have remodeled since.  Today, Seton Hall has over 10,000 students in its undergraduate, graduate and law school programs and is in close proximity to several Kentucky Fried Chicken locations.

 

  • NEW JERSEY INSTITUTE FOR CONTINUING LEGAL EDUCATION (ICLE)_SPECIAL 3 HOUR SESSION

 

Alan Gassman will be speaking on the topic of WHAT NEW JERSEY LAWYERS NEED TO KNOW ABOUT FLORIDA LAW – A 3 HOUR OVERVIEW BY ALAN S. GASSMAN

 

Date: Saturday, November 2, 2013

 

Location: Wilshire Grand Hotel, West Orange, New Jersey | 9am – 12pm

 

Additional Information: Please tell all of your friends, neighbors and enemies in New Jersey to come out to support this important presentation for the New Jersey Bar Association.  We will include discussions of airboats, how to get an alligator off of your driveway, how to peel a navel orange and what collard greens and grits are. For additional information please email agassman@gassmanpa.com

 

  • SALT LAKE CITY ESTATE PLANNING COUNCIL’S FALL ONE DAY “TAX AND DEDUCTIBILITY OF YOUR SKI TRIP” INSTITUTE

 

Alan Gassman will be speaking on the topic of PRACTICAL ESTATE PLANNING, WITH A $5.25 MILLION EXEMPTION AMOUNT

 

Date: Thursday, November 7, 2013

 

Location: Hilton Downtown Salt Lake City, Utah

 

Additional Information:  Please support this one day annual seminar conveniently located near skiing and tourism opportunities.  If you would like to attend this event or receive the materials please email agassman@gassmanpa.com

 

NOTABLE CONFERENCES PRESENTED BY OTHERS:

 

  • 48th ANNUAL HECKERLING INSTITUTE ON ESTATE PLANNING SEMINAR

 

Date: January 13 – 17, 2014

 

Location:  Orlando World Center Marriott, Orlando, Florida

 

Sponsor: University of Miami School of Law

 

Additional Information: For more information please visit: http://www.law.miami.edu/heckerling/

 

  • 16th ANNUAL ALL CHILDREN’S HOSPITAL ESTATE, TAX, LEGAL & FINANCIAL PLANNING SEMINAR

 

Date: Wednesday, February 12, 2014

 

Location: All Children’s Hospital Education and Conference Center, St. Petersburg, Florida with remote location live interactive viewings in Tampa, Sarasota, New Port Richey, Lakeland, and Bangkok, Thailand

 

Sponsor: All Children’s Hospital

 

  • THE UNIVERSITY OF FLORIDA TAX INSTITUTE

 

Date: February 19 – 21, 2014

 

Location: Grand Hyatt, Tampa, Florida

 

Sponsor:  UF Law alumni and UF Graduate Tax Program

 

Additional Information:  Here is what UF is saying about the program on its website: “The UF Tax Institute will provide tax practitioners and other leading tax, business and estate planning professionals with a program that covers the most current issues and planning ideas with a practical, informative, state-of-the-art approach.  The Institute’s schedule will devote separate days or half days to individual income tax issues, entity tax issues and estate planning issues.  Speakers and presentations will be announced as the program date nears to ensure coverage of the most timely and significant topics.  UF Law alumni have formed the Florida Tax Education Foundation, Inc., a nonprofit corporation, to organize the conference.”

 

For details about each event, please visit us online at gassmanlawassociates.com/newsandevents.html

Thank you to our law clerks that assisted us in preparing this report.

The Thursday Report – Special July 4th Edition

Posted on: July 3rd, 2013

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A Special Independence Day Edition!

Let’s make this the best fourth of July ever, ever, ever, ever!

- Kentucky Fried Movie

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In honor of Independence Day the Thursday Report is taking a break and providing you with this short but sweet (like KFC coleslaw) version.

We wish all Thursday Report readers and their families a very happy and safe Independence Day!

Some Quotes About Independence Day

I only regret that I have but one life to lose for my country.

- Nathan Hale

The Constitution only gives people the right to pursue happiness. You have to catch it yourself.

- Benjamin Franklin

Is life so dear or peace so sweet as to be purchased at the price of chains and slavery? Forbid it, Almighty God! I know not what course others may take, but as for me, give me liberty, or give me death!

- Patrick Henry

 This nation will remain the land of the free only so long as it is the home of the brave.

-        Elmer Davis

 This, then, is the state of the union:  free and restless, growing and full of hope.  So it was in the beginning.  So it shall always be, while God is willing, and we are strong enough to keep the faith.

-        Lyndon B. Johnson

 It is by the goodness of God that in our country we have those three unspeakably precious things: freedom of speech, freedom of conscience, and the prudence never to practice either of them.

-        Mark Twain

Our thoughts and prayers are with the families of the 19 firefighters killed in Arizona this week.

But sound aloud the praises, and give the victor-crown
To our noble-hearted Firemen, who fear not danger’s frown.
~Frederic G.W. Fenn, “Ode to our Firemen,” 1878

All men are created equal, then a few become firemen.  ~Author Unknown

Firemen never die, they just burn forever in the hearts of the people whose lives they saved.  ~Susan Diane Murphree

So as you look at the firefighter with his rake, hose or axe,
His beet red face or ice covered mustache,
You should know why he goes through that smoky front door,
And is forced to crawl like a baby down on the floor.
He does it to save both lives and property,
All that is precious to you and to me.
So take a good look at this modern warrior who serves his call proud and true,
And know that he would die just to save me and you.
~Robert J. Athans

You have to do something in your life that is honorable and not cowardly if you are to live in peace with yourself, and for the firefighter it is fire.  ~Larry Brown

            If you would like to do some reading this weekend our coverage so far this year on the new Florida statutes that were passed is as follows:

DID YOU KNOW….

As we celebrate the birth of our nation today, have you ever given thought to what happened to all of the people who signed the Declaration of Independence on July 4, 1776?

56 freedom fighters signed the Declaration of Independence and only a few of them are well known for their roles in America’s history, but what happened to the rest of them?

There were 24 lawyers in the group, 9 farmers, 11 merchants and several other well educated men who knew that by putting pen to paper and signing their names that they would face certain death if they were captured.  Five of the 56 were captured, tortured and killed.  12 had their homes destroyed, all in the face of freedom.  Two even had sons killed in the Revolutionary War.

One of the signers, Thomas McKeam, was so constantly pursued by British Soldiers that he had to move his family from place to place.  He also served in the Congress without pay while his family was kept in hiding.

British General Cornwallis took over one of the signers, Thomas Nelson, Jr.’s home for his headquarters during the Revolution.  While fighting the war, Thomas Nelson urged then General George Washington to open fire on his home.  General Washington did and in the process destroyed Mr. Nelson’s home.

Francis Lewis’ wife was jailed and died within a few months and his home and property were destroyed.  John Hart was driven from his wife’s bedside while she was dying and his 13 children were forced to flee.  He lived in the forest for over a year and when he returned home he found that his wife had died and his children were gone.  Additionally, his land had been destroyed.  He died a few weeks later, some say from a broken heart.

Of course we know the fate of those few famous signers like John Hancock, Benjamin Franklin, Thomas Jefferson and John Adams, but let us not forget both the famous and ordinary people who risked their lives for the freedom and country we enjoy today!

Applicable Federal Rates

Please click here to view a chart of this month’s, last month’s, and the preceding month’s Applicable Federal Rates, because for a sale you can use the lowest of the 3.

Seminars and Webinars

FLORIDA HEALTH CARE LAW CHANGES: HOW THEY AFFECT PHYSICIANS AND MEDICAL ENTERPRISES WEBINAR

Date:  Wednesday, July 10, 2013 | 5:00 p.m. – 5:30 p.m. (30 Minute Webinar)

Speakers: Healthcare Expert Lester Perling, J.D., M.H.A. and Alan S. Gassman, J.D., LL.M.

Location: Online webinar.

Additional Information: To register for the webinar please click here.

ESTATE TREK: DEEP SPACE NINE – EVEN MORE UPDATES TO OUR ESTATE PLANNING SOFTWARE

Date: Tuesday, July 16, 2013 | 12:30 p.m. – 1:00 p.m. (30 Minute Webinar)

Speakers: Alan S. Gassman, Kenneth J. Crotty and Christopher J. Denicolo

Location: Online webinar

Additional Information: To register for this webinar please click here.

BP OIL SPILL CLAIMS – AVOID MISTAKES AND MAXIMIZE CLAIMS

Date: Wednesday, July 17, 2013 | 5:00 p.m. – 5:30 p.m. (30 Minute Webinar)

Speakers: John Goldsmith, Esq. and Alan S. Gassman

Location: Online webinar

Additional Information:  To register for this webinar please click here.

MEDICAL EDUCATION RESOURCES PRIMARY CARE CONFERENCE

Alan Gassman will be speaking on the topic of LEGAL, TAX AND FINANCIAL BOOT CAMP FOR THE MEDICAL PRACTICE – A SPECIAL TAX, ESTATE PLANNING AND LAW CONFERENCE FOR PRIMARY CARE PHYSICIANS

Date: July 19 – 21, 2013 (Friday – Sunday mornings; Have fun at Disney in the afternoons and we will not ask what you do at night!)

Topic:         1)             The 10 Biggest Mistakes That Physicians Make In Their Investments and Business Planning

9am – 10am on Friday, July 19, 2013

2)             Lawsuits 101

                                                10:10 am – 11:10 am on Friday, July 19, 2013

3)             Essential Estate Planning

                                                11:10 am – 11:40 am on Friday, July 19, 2013

4)             Asset Entity Planning for Creditor Protection and Buy Sell Arrangements

10:10 am – 11:10 am on Saturday, July 20, 2013

                    5)             50 Ways to Leave Your Overhead – How to Enhance Medical Practice Profitability

11:40 am – 12:40 pm on Saturday, July 20, 2013

                    6)             Stark Naked, or Well Prepared? – Health Law Compliance

9:00 am – 10:00 am on Sunday, July 21, 2013

Location: Disney’s Boardwalk Resort, Orlando, Florida

Topics by Other Speakers: 2013 Tax Changes, Tax Deductions for Physicians, Medical Practice Financial Management, Physician Compensation, Tax Structures for Medical Practices and Retirement Plan Options for Physicians.

Additional Information:  For more information please visit www.MER.org  Please note that the program qualifies for continuing education credit for physicians.

AVOIDING THE TRAPS IN EMR/TECH CONTRACTS….NOW YOU TELL ME I’M STUCK WITH THIS FOR 5 YEARS!

Date: Tuesday, September 10, 2013 | 5:00 p.m and Thursday, September 12, 2013 | 12:30 p.m. (Each webinar will last 30 minutes)

Speaker: Sandra Greenblatt, Esq.

Location: Online webinar.

Additional Information: To register for the Tuesday, September 10, 2013, 5pm webinar please click here.  To register for the Thursday, September 12, 2013, 12:30 p.m. webinar please click here.

WEDU ESTATE PLANNING SEMINAR

Gassman Law Associates meets Big Bird – Sesame Street vs. Wall Street?

Alan Gassman will be speaking on the topic of ASSET PROTECTION – ESSENTIAL KNOWLEDGE AND HOT TOPICS

Leading trust law expert Bruce Stone, Esq. will also speak on a topic to be determined.

Date: Thursday, September 19, 2013 | 7:30 am – 11:30 am

Location: TBD

Additional Information:  If you would like to sign up for this seminar please email agassman@gassmanpa.com

NOTRE DAME TAX INSTITUTE

Jerry Hesch and Alan Gassman will be speaking on the topic of INTERESTING INTEREST QUESTIONS, PLANNING WITH LOW INTEREST LOANS, PRIVATE ANNUITIES, DEFECTIVE GRANTOR TRUSTS, AND PRIVATE AND COMMERCIAL ANNUITIES

Date: Wednesday, October 16 through Friday, October 18, 2013

Location: Notre Dame College, South Bend, Indiana

Additional Information: Professor Jerry Hesch’s Notre Dame Tax Institute will once again emphasize the importance of income tax planning and implications in addition to estate, estate tax, and related concepts.

Email us now to get your football tickets to the Notre Dame-USC game on October 19.

We welcome questions, comments and suggestions for the presentation that we are assisting Jerry in preparing and presenting.

PINELLAS COUNTY ESTATE PLANNING COUNCIL SEMINAR

Alan Gassman will be speaking on the topic of HOT TOPICS FOR ESTATE PLANNERS

Date: Wednesday, October 23, 2013 | 8:00 am – 12:00 p.m. (60 MINUTE PRESENTATION)

Location: TBD

Additional Information: To attend the meeting or to receive information on joining the Council please click here or email agassman@gassmanpa.com

2013 MOTE VASCULAR SURGERY FELLOWS – FACTS OF LIFE TALK SEMINAR FOR FIRST YEAR SURGEONS

Alan Gassman will be speaking on the topic of ESTATE, MEDICAL PRACTICE, RETIREMENT, TAX, INSURANCE, AND BUY/SELL PLANNING – THE EARLIER YOU START THE SOONER YOU WILL BE SECURE

Date: October 25 – 27, 2013 | Times TBD

Location: TBD

Additional Information: Please contact agassman@gassmanpa.com for additional information.

NEW JERSEY INSTITUTE FOR CONTINUING LEGAL EDUCATION (ICLE) HEALTH LAW SYMPOSIUM – AN ALL DAY SEMINAR

Alan Gassman will be speaking on the topic of WHAT HEALTH LAWYERS NEED TO KNOW ABOUT FLORIDA LAW

Date: Friday, November 1, 2013 | 9am – 5pm (Mr. Gassman speaks from 1:10 pm until 2:10 p.m.)

Location: Seton Hall Law School, Newark, New Jersey

Additional Information: Seton Hall University in South Orange, New Jersey was founded in 1856, and they have remodeled since.  Today, Seton Hall has over 10,000 students in its undergraduate, graduate and law school programs and is in close proximity to several Kentucky Fried Chicken locations.

NEW JERSEY INSTITUTE FOR CONTINUING LEGAL EDUCATION (ICLE)_SPECIAL 3 HOUR SESSION

Alan Gassman will be speaking on the topic of WHAT NEW JERSEY LAWYERS NEED TO KNOW ABOUT FLORIDA LAW – A 3 HOUR OVERVIEW BY ALAN S. GASSMAN

Date: Saturday, November 2, 2013

Location: Wilshire Grand Hotel, West Orange, New Jersey | 9am – 12pm

Additional Information: Please tell all of your friends, neighbors and enemies in New Jersey to come out to support this important presentation for the New Jersey Bar Association.  We will include discussions of airboats, how to get an alligator off of your driveway, how to peel a navel orange and what collard greens and grits are. For additional information please email agassman@gassmanpa.com

SALT LAKE CITY ESTATE PLANNING COUNCIL’S FALL ONE DAY “TAX AND DEDUCTIBILITY OF YOUR SKI TRIP” INSTITUTE

Alan Gassman will be speaking on the topic of PRACTICAL ESTATE PLANNING, WITH A $5.25 MILLION EXEMPTION AMOUNT

Date: Thursday, November 7, 2013

Location: Hilton Downtown Salt Lake City, Utah

Additional Information:  Please support this one day annual seminar conveniently located near skiing and tourism opportunities.  If you would like to attend this event or receive the materials please email agassman@gassmanpa.com

NOTABLE SEMINARS PRESENTED BY OTHERS:

48th ANNUAL HECKERLING INSTITUTE ON ESTATE PLANNING SEMINAR

Date: January 13 – 17, 2014

Location:  Orlando World Center Marriott, Orlando, Florida

Sponsor: University of Miami School of Law

Additional Information: For more information please visit: http://www.law.miami.edu/heckerling/

16th ANNUAL ALL CHILDREN’S HOSPITAL ESTATE, TAX, LEGAL & FINANCIAL PLANNING SEMINAR

Date: Wednesday, February 12, 2014

Location: All Children’s Hospital Education and Conference Center, St. Petersburg, Florida with remote location live interactive viewings in Tampa, Sarasota, New Port Richey, Lakeland, and Bangkok, Thailand

Sponsor: All Children’s Hospital

THE UNIVERSITY OF FLORIDA TAX INSTITUTE

Date: February 19 – 21, 2014

Location: Grand Hyatt, Tampa, Florida

Sponsor:  UF Law alumni and UF Graduate Tax Program

Additional Information:  Here is what UF is saying about the program on its website: “The UF Tax Institute will provide tax practitioners and other leading tax, business and estate planning professionals with a program that covers the most current issues and planning ideas with a practical, informative, state-of-the-art approach.  The Institute’s schedule will devote separate days or half days to individual income tax issues, entity tax issues and estate planning issues.  Speakers and presentations will be announced as the program date nears to ensure coverage of the most timely and significant topics.  UF Law alumni have formed the Florida Tax Education Foundation, Inc., a nonprofit corporation, to organize the conference.”

For details about each event, please visit us online at gassmanlawassociates.com/newsandevents.html

Thank you to our law clerks that assisted us in preparing this report.

The Thursday Report – June 27, 2013 – Text Law, Cole Slaw, Tax and Medical Law

Posted on: June 27th, 2013

No Comments

Even More New Florida Laws

Florida False Claims Act

Drug Database for Controlled Substances Only Used by 1/3 Pharmacists and 10% of Doctors in Florida

The New Texting Law And Making Sure Your Employees Are Not Risking Life And Liability By Texting On The Job

State by State Tenancy by the Entireties

Lawyers in History: The Impact of Law Practice on Their Lives and Careers – Potter Stewart

KFC CEO for Japan Buys Colonel Sanders White Suit

We welcome contributions for future Thursday Report topics. If you are interested in making a contribution as a guest writer, please email Janine Ruggiero at Janine@gassmanpa.com.

This report and other Thusday Reports can be found on our website at www.gassmanlawassociates.com.

Even More New Florida Laws

Florida’s estate tax was completely shut down in 2004 when the federal estate tax system stopped giving a credit for state estate taxes paid.   Nevertheless, Florida did not change its reporting laws until this year, so personal representatives of estates of Florida decedents have been having to file an Affidavit of No Florida Estate Tax Due with the State of Florida to confirm that there is no estate tax, regardless of whether the estate is required to file a Form 706 or 706NA Federal Estate Tax Return. This is as dumb as ordering mashed potatoes without that great Kentucky Fried Chicken no cholesterol or calories gravy.  Florida Statute Section 198.13 becomes effective July 1, 2013 to remove the requirement that personal representatives of the state of Florida decedents must file an Affidavit of No Florida Estate Tax Due, for decedents dying after January 1, 2013.

Florida False Claims Act

The new Florida False Claims Act (FFCA), which was signed by the governor on June 3, 2013, expands on the government’s powers under the existing Act.  In revising the Act, the legislature acts to conform the new FFCA to the Federal False Claims Act.  It will take effect July 1, 2013.

The FFCA allows for civil actions by either a private party or the state against a defendant who has defrauded the state.  Most claims pursued under the FFCA are for instances of health care, nursing home, Medicaid, and Medicare fraud.  Claims under the FFCA would include:

  • Submitting a false claim for payment or approval;
  • Making or using a false record to get a false or fraudulent claim paid or approved;
  • Conspiring to make a false claim or to deceive an agency to get a false or fraudulent claim allowed or paid; or
  • Making or using a false record to conceal, avoid, or decrease payments owed to the state government.

The penalty for violation of FFCA is between $5,500 to $11,000 per claim.  In addition, the state is awarded three times the amount of damage, which means, if a defendant defrauded the state of $100,000, the award to the state would be $300,000 in addition to the above penalty.  There is a lot of incentive for a private person to bring a claim: a private person will be awarded by a portion of the award in a successful action, in addition to any expenses to bring the claim.

Other penalties have been added to the Act, including a minimum of $5,000 for using false information to make a claim, and a civil penalty of up to $100,000 for a natural person or $1 million for any other entity, plus fees and costs, if evidence is either created or destroyed when there is an outstanding subpoena.

Speaking of subpoenas, that power has been expanded.  The Department of Legal Affairs now has discovery capabilities, even before civil proceedings are initiated.  Subpoenas can now be issued for production, interrogatories under oath and to give sworn testimony.  But that’s not all.  Now the Department of Legal Affairs is the only entity that can pursue under the FFCA, except for initiations or interventions by the Department of Financial Services.  The department can dismiss an action at any point, pursue a claim through an administrative remedy, and amend pleadings, or even file a new complaint, if it intervenes in an existing action.  In addition, the Attorney General’s Office’s authority has expanded with the power to prosecute claims that other governmental officials have not acted upon.

The burden of proof has been revised to prevent a defendant in a qui tam action from denying facts which were the “basis of a criminal proceeding in which the defendant was found guilty, pled guilty, or pled nolo contendere.”

A qui tam action is simply an action brought by a private person under the statute.  It is what allows the private person to sue for a penalty, which is partly received by either the government, or a specified public institution.  The other part is received by the private party to go buy more Kentucky Fried Chicken.

Drug Database For Controlled Substances Only Used by 1/3 Pharmacists and 10% of Doctors in Florida

Bills to require doctors to check the Florida E-FORCSE database failed this year, and we were surprised to learn that apparently less than 10% of Florida physicians are making use of this great program.  The Florida Legislature did approve $500,000 to keep a prescription drug database running, but is not requiring physicians or pharmacists to use it.  The Electronic – Florida Online Reporting of Controlled Substances Evaluation (E-FORCSE) was developed in 2010 to allow pharmacists and physicians to track prescriptions of controlled substances of patients.  However, the database is voluntary.  WUSF reports that Federal Officials told the Florida Board of Pharmacy, that only 1/3 of Florida pharmacists and 10% of Florida doctors are actually using the database.

Mandatory requirements for reporting (HB 831), and checking (SB 1192) the database were introduced in the Legislature, but both bills died in the House.  While the information in the database is not discoverable or admissible in any civil action, law enforcement officers are able to obtain reports directly through a manager of the database.  The executive vice president of the Florida Pharmacy Association told WUSF, that while pharmacists support the bill, they do not want to be forced to use it, and should be able to use their professional judgment.  There are plans to improve the database, and a panel is discussing mandatory requirements.

The New Texting Law And Making Sure Your Employees Are Not Risking Life And Liability By Texting On The Job

Are your employees or your client’s employees risking their lives and the lives of others by texting while driving on business?

The new Florida Statute Section § 316.305 ban on texting can be brought to their attention, and you can further enumerate the functions that are allowed under the Statute, but are still not safe.

The above-referenced Statutes can be found by clicking here.

The following is our Employee Texting Agreement, with an enumeration of seven cell phone functions that are permitted under Florida Statute § 812.15, not considered safe by many experts.  Please read below and let us know if you agree.  Student drivers and others who may drive your car or the cars of others might also be asked to sign such an agreement.  Read this agreement and think about the life and safety of those who are impacted by what you and others do while driving.  This is very serious stuff!

This will acknowledge that I, as an employee of GASSMAN LAW ASSOCIATES, P.A., can lose my job immediately if I am using a company car of GASSMAN LAW ASSOCIATES, P.A. and/or running an errand for GASSMAN LAW ASSOCIATES, P.A. and fail to follow Florida Statute §316.305 Florida Ban on Texting While Driving Law.  I understand that under this act, I may not:

operate a motor vehicle while manually typing or entering multiple letters, numbers, symbols, or other characters into a wireless communications device or while sending or reading data in such a device for the purpose of nonvoice interpersonal communication, including, but not limited to, communication methods known as texting, e-mailing, and instant messaging.

I further understand that “wireless communications device” means:

Any handheld device, used or capable of being used in a handheld manner, that is designed or intended to receive or transmit text or character-based messages, access or store data, or connect to the Internet or any communications services as defined in s. 812.15 and that allows text communications.

I understand that the following are to some extent permitted by Florida Statute §316.305, but are not permitted by GASSMAN LAW ASSOCIATES, P.A. and will be grounds for immediate termination if I engage in one or more of these activities while operating a company car of GASSMAN LAW ASSOCIATES, P.A. and/or running an errand for GASSMAN LAW ASSOCIATES, P.A.:

  1. Reading text messages, e-mails, instant messages, or any other data while operating a motor vehicle belonging to GASSMAN LAW ASSOCIATES, P.A. and/or running an errand for GASSMAN LAW ASSOCIATES, P.A.
  2. Conducting wireless interpersonal communication other than normal cell business related talking, that does not require text messages, such as voice-texting.
  3. Using a device or system for navigation purposes, such as a GPS.  An employee operating a motor vehicle belonging to GASSMAN LAW ASSOCIATES, P.A. and/or running an errand for GASSMAN LAW ASSOCIATES, P.A. requiring use of a GPS-type service must enter navigation instructions prior to departing.  Furthermore, the employee must pull off the road to a safe location to make changes or to interact with the device beyond listening to vocal instructions.
  4. Checking any weather or traffic alerts.  If the situation requires checking such alert or to get such information, the employee must pull off the road to a safe location to make changes or to interact with the device.
  5. Receiving messages that are related to the operation or navigation of the motor vehicle, or data used primarily by the motor vehicle.
  6. Using a hand-held device when stopped at a red light, or in traffic, except to view messages and e-mails, but not to send any or to be distracted from being vigilant and safe and aware of what is happening on the road.
  7. Using a hand-held device to listen to the radio, or play music while operating the vehicle.  Use the car radio instead, and no headphones!

I further agree not to use alcohol or any other “mood modifier” non-prescription medications or to have any such alcohol or medications in my bloodstream or lungs while I am driving.

I further agree to report any violation of the above by any other employee of GASSMAN LAW ASSOCIATES, P.A.

I understand that this agreement may be modified by GASSMAN LAW ASSOCIATES, P.A.

Printed Name: ______________________________

Signed: ___________________________________

Date: _____________________________________

State by State Tenancy by the Entireties

            We recently compiled and updated the following list of the tenancy by the entireties states, which denotes limitations where special characteristics are associated therewith.  Not all states have tenancy by the entireties, and many that do will not have protection of assets other than real estate, or have limited protection when it does apply.  Florida, Delaware and Wyoming are some of the states that offer what we call “Pure Protection”, but please keep in mind that if one spouse dies, or there is a divorce, or both spouses are sued then the TBE assets are exposed.  Our friend Phil Rarick of the Rarick, Beskin & Garcia Vega law firm in Miami Lakes, Florida recently sent his contact base the following excellent write up on this:

Tenancy by Entireties in Florida: The Benefits – and Five Traps

By Phillip B. Rarick, Miami Probate Attorney

Holding title to bank accounts, stock or other intangible property as Tenancy by Entireties or “TBE” is a limited but popular form of asset protection that has benefits – and traps.

Benefits of Holding Property as Tenants by Entireties

Holding property as TBE has certain benefits for married couples. Upon the death of one spouse, all assets flow to the surviving spouse without the need for probate. Holding property as TBE has significant asset protection benefits:  such property cannot be reached by creditors unless both husband and wife are liable.  If the property is held as TBE, and the creditor has a judgment against only one spouse, then the creditor cannot attack the TBE property.

Five Traps for Holding Property as Tenants by Entireties

1.       You must be married.  This form of ownership is available only to two persons in a legally recognized marriage.  TBE is therefore not available to a gay or lesbian couple in Florida.   Since Florida does not recognize common law marriage, TBE is not available to two persons living together regardless of the time of the relationship.

2.       Assets held jointly before marriage.   These assets do not automatically become TBE upon marriage.  Such assets should be re-transferred from the spouses jointly to themselves as tenants by entireties after the marriage.

3.       TBE assets can be attacked if both spouses are liable.  As mentioned above, if a creditor has a judgment against both spouses, then the creditor can reach TBE property.   Further, if one spouse dies, the TBE protection is lost, and the surviving spouse’s assets can be reached by creditors.

4.       Creating the account.  If one spouse is the owner of a bank account, do not just add the other spouse’s name to the account.  Open up a new account in joint names of the two spouses.

5.       Check your bank signature card.  If you and your spouse open a bank account at the same time, Florida law provides a legal presumption that the account is held as tenants by the entireties.  However, if the bank officer checked a box on the card  indicating contrary title when opening the account, such as “Joint Tenants With Right of Survivorship”, then the account will be held as indicated on the card.  The take-away point here is this:  check your bank signature cards for all accounts held in joint names with your spouse.

Conclusion

Tenancy by the entireties ownership can be a useful form of ownership in Florida.  However, there are numerous traps.  There are stronger and safer forms for asset protection that are available in Florida with proper planning.  In order to best protect your hard earned wealth, it is advisable to periodically review how you hold title to all your assets by a Florida attorney experienced in estate and asset protection planning.

For a copy of our chapter on TBE in our book entitled Gassman & Markham on Florida and Federal Asset Protection Law you can click here, and if you would like to purchase the book you can email Janine@gassmanpa.com or visit www.haddonhallpublishing.com

A chart that we have prepared on this topic is as follows:

STATE

LAW

PURE PROTECTION

Alaska

Recording a judgment against a judgment debtor, thus creating a judgment lien against property owned by the judgment debtor, does not sever a tenancy by the entirety between the judgment debtor and spouse. Smith v. Kofstad, 206 P.3d 441 (Alaska 2009)

No

Arkansas

Real property owned by the husband and wife as tenants by the entirety may be sold under execution to satisfy a judgment against the husband, subject to the wife’s right of survivorship. Morris v. Solesbee, 892 S.W. 2d 281 (1995).

No

Delaware

Creditors of a spouse have no interest in realty that is held by the entireties. Johnson v. Smith, 1994 WL 643131 (Del. Ch. 1994)

Pure Protection

D.C.

Although tenancy by the entireties property is liable for the spouses’ joint debts and for the individual debts of the surviving co-tenant, it is unreachable by the creditors of one tenant.  Morrison v. Potter, 764 A.2d 234 (D.C. 2000).

Pure Protection

Florida

Property is subject only to the debts of both spouses. In re Matthews, 360 B.R. 732 (Bankr. M.D. Fla. 2007).

Pure Protection

Hawaii

An estate by the entireties is not subject to the claims of the spouse’s individual creditors during the joint lives of the spouses. Sawada v. Endo, 561 P.2d 1291 (1977).

Pure Protection

Illinois

TBE in real property is available for homestead property only.  Premier Property Management, Inc. v. Jose Chavez, 728 N.E. 2d 476 (2000).

No

Indiana

Generally, the creditor of one spouse may not seize, sell or attach entirety property. Anuszkiewicz v. Anuszkiewicz 360 N.E. 2d 230, 232 (Ind. App. 1977).

Pure Protection

Kentucky

A creditor cannot force a sale of property owned by husband and wife as tenants by the entirety with right of survivorship, but the debtor spouse’s expectant interest can be sold. Coleman American Companies, Inc. v. Leasure, 2008 WL 5191463 (2008).

No

Maryland

Because entireties property is owned by the husband and wife as the marital unit, it is not subject to the claims of individual creditors of either spouse. Schlossberg v. Barney, 380 F.3d 174, 178 (4th Cir. 2004).

Pure Protection

Massachusetts

The property is protected from creditors of the debtor spouse, so long as the nondebtor spouse lives in the house. Coraccio v. Lowell Five Cents Sav. Bank, 612 N.E. 2d 650, 654 (1993).  If the nondebtor spouse no longer occupies the residence, it is subject to the execution for the debts of the other spouse. In re Snyder, 231 B.R. 437, 443 (Bankr. D. Mass. 1999).

No

Michigan

In re Strausbough, 426 B.R. 243 (Bankr. E.D. Mich. 2010). A tenancy by the entirety form of concurrent ownership is intended to protect the marital estate.  In a tenancy by the entirety neither husband nor wife may sell or encumber property to a third person without consent of the other spouse.  To the extent of joint debt, entireties property is not protected from claims of the joint creditors.

Pure Protection

Mississippi

Mississippi statutory authority states that assets of a debtor do not include “[a]n interest in property held in tenancy by the entireties to the extent it is not subject to process by a creditor holding a claim against only one tenant.” Miss. Code Ann. § 15-3-101(b)(iii) (Supp.2010).

Pure Protection

Missouri

Hanebrink v. Tower Grove Bank & Trust Company, 321 S.W. 2d 524, 527 (Mo. App. 1959).

Pure Protection

New Jersey

While New Jersey recognizes tenancy by the entireties, creditors of either spouse have the right to reach entireties property, including debtor-spouse’s present interest therein, subject to the right of survivorship; thus, a creditor who does so becomes a tenant in common, in possession with nondebtor-spouse. In re Etoll, 425 B.R. 743 (Bankr. D. N.J. 2010).

No

New York

A tenancy by the entirety cannot be divided absent consent of both spouses. Prario V. Novo, 645 N.Y.S. 2d 269 (N.Y. 1996) Applies only to real estate.

No

North Carolina

Where property is held as tenants by the entireties, any judgment against only one of the spouses may not attach to the real property while it remains as a tenancy by the entirety.  Dealer Supply Co. v. Greene, 522 S.E. 2d 350 (N.C. App. 1992).

Pure Protection

Ohio

Only recognizes TBE if established prior to April 4, 1985.

No

Oklahoma

Some, but not all, creditors can pursue the obligations of individual spouses in the entireties property. See 60 Okla. Stat. § 74.

No

Oregon

The interest of a judgment debtor spouse, as tenant by entirety with nondebtor spouse, may be sold on execution, and the execution purchaser only obtains the debtor spouse’s interest, which ceases to exist should a debtor spouse predecease the nondebtor spouse. Hoyt v. American Traders, Inc., 725 P.2d 336 (1986).

No

Pennsylvania

Property held as tenancy by the entireties is unavailable to satisfy the claims of the creditor of one of the tenants. Johnson v. Johnson, 908 A.2d 290 (2006).

Pure Protection

Rhode Island

In Cull v. Vadnais, 406 A.2d 1241 (1979), the court held that a creditor had the right to attach a debtor-spouse’s interest in real property held as tenancy by the entirety.

No

Tennessee

Where the debtor owns property with a nondebtor spouse in a tenancy by the entireties, only the debtor’s survivorship interest is subject to execution, not the debtor’s present, possessory interest. 16 Tenn. Prac., Debtor-Creditor Law and Practice § 15:33 (2d ed.).

No

Vermont

If a tenancy by the entirety is validly created, it is protected from the sole creditors of an individual debtor. RBS Citizens, N.A., v. Ouhrabka, 30 A.3d 1266 (Vt. 2011).  The court noted that the property held by husband and wife, as husband and wife, is protected from either the sole creditors of either the husband or the wife. Anchor Foundations, Inc. v. Ingalls, 191 Vt. 641 (Vt. 2011 Unpublished LEXIS case)

Pure Protection

Virginia

Property that is held in tenancy by the entirety by spouses is protected from the claims of the debtor’s individual creditors. In re Bradby, 455 B.R. 476 (Bankr. E.D. Va. 2011).

Pure Protection

Wyoming

Wyoming law does not allow a judgment creditor to seize property held by a husband and wife as tenants by the entirety to satisfy the individual debts of one of the spouses. Colorado Nat. Bank v. Miles, 711 P.2d 390, 393-94 (Wyo. 1985).

Pure Protection

 LAWYERS IN HISTORY:  THE IMPACT OF LAW PRACTICE ON THEIR LIVES AND CAREERS

Potter Stewart

Potter Stewart

Potter Stewart was an attorney who graduated from Yale Law School (and the school’s famous Skull and Bones society) in 1937.  He was a member of the U.S. Naval Reserve and served in World War II.  In 1954, at the age of 39, Potter was appointed to the United States Court of Appeals for the Sixth Circuit, and in 1959, he was nominated to the Supreme Court.  Potter served until he stepped down in 1981; his seat was then filled by none other than the first woman to sit on the Supreme Court, Sandra Day O’Conner.

Stewart was a member of the Supreme Court for landmark court decisions, including Griswold v. Connecticut, Miranda v. Arizona, Sierra Club v. Morton, Ginzburg v. United States, and Roe v. Wade.  He is known for both his statement on censorship from the Ginzburg v. United States dissent, “censorship reflects a society’s lack of confidence in itself.  It is a hallmark of an authoritarian regime,” and his statement from his concurrence in the obscenity case of Jacobellis v. Ohio, “pornography is hard to define, but I know it when I see it.”

However, in a later case he admitted that this last view, as a legal interpretative policy, was “simply untenable” and regretted that it seemed likely that those would be the words he was remembered for.  He died in 1985, and we hope you remember him more for his role in landmark decisions like Katz v. United States, a decision that expanded our Fourth Amendment protections.  Katz Deli in New York would not be open if this opinion had not been written, although no one is sure why.  They deliver, but only in the New York City area.

 KFC CEO for Japan Buys Colonel Sanders’ White Suit

            The President and CEO of Kentucky Fried Chicken in Japan, Masao “Charlie” Watanabe, has purchased Colonel Sanders white jacket and black tie at an auction for $21,510.  As you can see he wasted no time in trying on the jacket and tie.  To read the entire article please click here. Soy Sauce and Fries may be coming soon to a KFC near you.

 sanders25n-1-web

Applicable Federal Rates

Please click here to view a chart of this month’s, last month’s, and the preceding month’s Applicable Federal Rates, because for a sale you can use the lowest of the 3.

Seminars and Webinars

  • LUNCH TALK – MEDICAL PRIVACY LAWS – HOW TO HANDLE STICKY SITUATIONS (WHAT EVERY LAWYER NEEDS TO KNOW)

Date:  Monday, July 1, 2013 | 12:30 p.m. (30 MINUTE PRESENATION)

Speaker: Lester Perling, Esq. and Vanessa Reynolds, Esq.

Location: Online webinar

Sponsor: The Clearwater Bar Association

Additional Information: To register please visit www.clearwaterbar.org or email Janine Ruggiero at Janine@gassmanpa.com

  • FLORIDA HEALTH CARE LAW CHANGES: HOW THEY AFFECT PHYSICIANS AND MEDICAL ENTERPRISES WEBINAR

Date:  Tuesday, July 2, 2013 | 12:30 p.m. – 1:00 p.m. and Wednesday, July 10, 2013 | 5:00 p.m. – 5:30 p.m.

Speakers: Healthcare Expert Lester Perling, J.D., M.H.A. and Alan S. Gassman, J.D., LL.M.

Location: Online webinar.

Additional Information: To register for the July 2nd at 12:30 p.m. webinar please click here.   To register for the July 10th at 5:00 p.m. webinar please click here.

BP OIL SPILL CLAIMS – AVOID MISTAKES AND MAXIMIZE CLAIMS

Date: Wednesday, July 17, 2013 | 5:00 p.m. – 5:30 p.m.

Speakers: John Goldsmith, Esq. and Alan S. Gassman

Location: Online webinar

Additional Information:  To register for this webinar please click here.

MEDICAL EDUCATION RESOURCES PRIMARY CARE CONFERENCE

Alan Gassman will be speaking on the topic of LEGAL, TAX AND FINANCIAL BOOT CAMP FOR THE MEDICAL PRACTICE – A SPECIAL TAX, ESTATE PLANNING AND LAW CONFERENCE FOR PRIMARY CARE PHYSICIANS

Date: July 19 – 21, 2013 (Friday – Sunday mornings; Have fun at Disney in the afternoons and we will not ask what you do at night!)

Topic:         1)             The 10 Biggest Mistakes That Physicians Make In Their Investments and Business Planning

9am – 10am on Friday, July 19, 2013

2)             Lawsuits 101

                                               10:10 am – 11:10 am on Friday, July 19, 2013

3)             Essential Estate Planning

                                               11:10 am – 11:40 am on Friday, July 19, 2013

4)             Asset Entity Planning for Creditor Protection and Buy Sell Arrangements

10:10 am – 11:10 am on Saturday, July 20, 2013

                    5)             50 Ways to Leave Your Overhead – How to Enhance Medical Practice Profitability

11:40 am – 12:40 pm on Saturday, July 20, 2013

                    6)             Stark Naked, or Well Prepared? – Health Law Compliance

9:00 am – 10:00 am on Sunday, July 21, 2013

Location: Disney’s Boardwalk Resort, Orlando, Florida

Topics by Other Speakers: 2013 Tax Changes, Tax Deductions for Physicians, Medical Practice Financial Management, Physician Compensation, Tax Structures for Medical Practices and Retirement Plan Options for Physicians.

Additional Information:  For more information please visit www.MER.org  Please note that the program qualifies for continuing education credit for physicians.

  • WEDU ESTATE PLANNING SEMINAR

Gassman Law Associates meets Big Bird – Sesame Street vs. Wall Street?

Alan Gassman will be speaking on the topic of ASSET PROTECTION – ESSENTIAL KNOWLEDGE AND HOT TOPICS

Leading trust law expert Bruce Stone, Esq. will also speak on a topic to be determined.

Date: Thursday, September 19, 2013 | 7:30 am – 11:30 am

Location: TBD

Additional Information:  If you would like to sign up for this seminar please email agassman@gassmanpa.com

  • NOTRE DAME TAX INSTITUTE

Jerry Hesch and Alan Gassman will be speaking on the topic of INTERESTING INTEREST QUESTIONS, PLANNING WITH LOW INTEREST LOANS, PRIVATE ANNUITIES, DEFECTIVE GRANTOR TRUSTS, AND PRIVATE AND COMMERCIAL ANNUITIES

Date: Wednesday, October 16 through Friday, October 18, 2013

Location: Notre Dame College, South Bend, Indiana

Additional Information: Professor Jerry Hesch’s Notre Dame Tax Institute will once again emphasize the importance of income tax planning and implications in addition to estate, estate tax, and related concepts.

Email us now to get your football tickets to the Notre Dame-USC game on October 19.

We welcome questions, comments and suggestions for the presentation that we are assisting Jerry in preparing and presenting.

 

  • PINELLAS COUNTY ESTATE PLANNING COUNCIL SEMINAR

Alan Gassman will be speaking on the topic of HOT TOPICS FOR ESTATE PLANNERS

Date: Wednesday, October 23, 2013 | 8:00 am – 12:00 p.m. (60 MINUTE PRESENTATION)

Location: TBD

Additional Information: To attend the meeting or to receive information on joining the Council please click here  or email agassman@gassmanpa.com

2013 MOTE VASCULAR SURGERY FELLOWS – FACTS OF LIFE TALK SEMINAR FOR FIRST YEAR SURGEONS

Alan Gassman will be speaking on the topic of ESTATE, MEDICAL PRACTICE, RETIREMENT, TAX, INSURANCE, AND BUY/SELL PLANNING – THE EARLIER YOU START THE SOONER YOU WILL BE SECURE

Date: October 25 – 27, 2013 | Times TBD

Location: TBD

Additional Information: Please contact agassman@gassmanpa.com for additional information.

  • NEW JERSEY INSTITUTE FOR CONTINUING LEGAL EDUCATION (ICLE) HEALTH LAW SYMPOSIUM – AN ALL DAY SEMINAR

Alan Gassman will be speaking on the topic of WHAT HEALTH LAWYERS NEED TO KNOW ABOUT FLORIDA LAW

Date: Friday, November 1, 2013 | 9am – 5pm (Mr. Gassman speaks from 1:10 pm until 2:10 p.m.)

Location: Seton Hall Law School, Newark, New Jersey

Additional Information: Seton Hall University in South Orange, New Jersey was founded in 1856, and they have remodeled since.  Today, Seton Hall has over 10,000 students in its undergraduate, graduate and law school programs and is in close proximity to several Kentucky Fried Chicken locations.

  • NEW JERSEY INSTITUTE FOR CONTINUING LEGAL EDUCATION (ICLE)_SPECIAL 3 HOUR SESSION

Alan Gassman will be speaking on the topic of WHAT NEW JERSEY LAWYERS NEED TO KNOW ABOUT FLORIDA LAW – A 3 HOUR OVERVIEW BY ALAN S. GASSMAN

Date: Saturday, November 2, 2013

Location: Wilshire Grand Hotel, West Orange, New Jersey | 9am – 12pm

Additional Information: Please tell all of your friends, neighbors and enemies in New Jersey to come out to support this important presentation for the New Jersey Bar Association.  We will include discussions of airboats, how to get an alligator off of your driveway, how to peel a navel orange and what collard greens and grits are. For additional information please email agassman@gassmanpa.com

  • SALT LAKE CITY ESTATE PLANNING COUNCIL’S FALL ONE DAY “TAX AND DEDUCTIBILITY OF YOUR SKI TRIP” INSTITUTE

Alan Gassman will be speaking on the topic of PRACTICAL ESTATE PLANNING, WITH A $5.25 MILLION EXEMPTION AMOUNT

Date: Thursday, November 7, 2013

Location: Hilton Downtown Salt Lake City, Utah

Additional Information:  Please support this one day annual seminar conveniently located near skiing and tourism opportunities.  If you would like to attend this event or receive the materials please email agassman@gassmanpa.com

NOTABLE SEMINARS PRESENTED BY OTHERS:

  • 48th ANNUAL HECKERLING INSTITUTE ON ESTATE PLANNING SEMINAR

Date: January 13 – 17, 2014

Location:  Orlando World Center Marriott, Orlando, Florida

Sponsor: University of Miami School of Law

Additional Information: For more information please visit: http://www.law.miami.edu/heckerling/

  • 16th ANNUAL ALL CHILDREN’S HOSPITAL ESTATE, TAX, LEGAL & FINANCIAL PLANNING SEMINAR

Date: Wednesday, February 12, 2014

Location: All Children’s Hospital Education and Conference Center, St. Petersburg, Florida with remote location live interactive viewings in Tampa, Sarasota, New Port Richey, Lakeland, and Bangkok, Thailand

Sponsor: All Children’s Hospital

THE UNIVERSITY OF FLORIDA TAX INSTITUTE

Date: February 19 – 21, 2014

Location: Grand Hyatt, Tampa, Florida

Sponsor:  UF Law alumni and UF Graduate Tax Program

Additional Information:  Here is what UF is saying about the program on its website: “The UF Tax Institute will provide tax practitioners and other leading tax, business and estate planning professionals with a program that covers the most current issues and planning ideas with a practical, informative, state-of-the-art approach.  The Institute’s schedule will devote separate days or half days to individual income tax issues, entity tax issues and estate planning issues.  Speakers and presentations will be announced as the program date nears to ensure coverage of the most timely and significant topics.  UF Law alumni have formed the Florida Tax Education Foundation, Inc., a nonprofit corporation, to organize the conference.”

For details about each event, please visit us online at gassmanlawassociates.com/newsandevents.html

Thank you to our law clerks that assisted us in preparing this report.

The Thursday Report – June 20, 2013 – New Florida Laws Explained

Posted on: June 20th, 2013

No Comments

New Florida Laws Explained:

1.   30 Day Rental Provision for Homestead

2.   Fraudulent Transfers to Charities Exemption

3.   Physician Assistants Are Now Able to Order Controlled Substances for Hospital, Surgery Center and Mobile Surgical Facility Use

4.   Optometrists Now Able to Administer and Prescribe Some Pain Relief Medications

Gary Teblum on the New LLC Laws– Part 2

What to Tell Clients if and When Investigators Show Up at Their Door by Gabriel Imperato, Esq.

Our New Tampa Office Finally Gets It’s Sign!

Lawyers in History: The Impact of Law Practice on their Lives and Careers: James K. Polk

Our Favorite Animal Poems by Ogden Nash

We welcome contributions for future Thursday Report topics. If you are interested in making a contribution as a guest writer, please email Janine Ruggiero at Janine@gassmanpa.com.

This report and other Thursday Reports can be found on our website at www.gassmanlawassociates.com.

New Florida Laws Explained

1.   30 Day Rental Provisions for Homestead

Governor Scott has signed into law Senate Bill 342 – Rental of Homestead Property, and it is scheduled to take effect on July 1, 2013.  The new law amends Florida Statute § 196.061.

Under the old statute, enacted in 1996, a homeowner’s rental of “all or substantially all” of his or her homesteaded property meant that he or she had “abandoned” the homestead and therefore lost the ad valorem tax protection.  The caveat to the law was that a homeowner turning his homestead property into such a rental after the first day of a given calendar year would not lose the homestead exemption for that calendar year, so long as the property had not also been rented the previous calendar year.

SB 342 clarifies the statute and limits the exception.  Now, a property owner who rents out his or her homestead for more than 30 days per year for two consecutive years will lose the homestead exemption tax benefits on that property.

2.   Fraudulent Transfers to Charities Exemption

The governor has also signed HB – 95 Charitable Contributions.  The bill amends Florida’s Uniform Fraudulent Transfers Act (FUFTA), Florida Statute § 726, so that it provides debtors with a defense to a creditor’s “clawback” action on funds transferred to a religious or charitable entity.

Effective July 1st, FUFTA will be amended to prevent creditors from attempting to “clawback” donations made by debtors to qualified religious or charitable organizations, if it can be shown that the organization received the donation in good faith and more than two years before the commencement of an action to set aside the transfer or the filing of a bankruptcy petition. The statute also includes a “value” defense, which states that a transfer from a debtor to a charity within two years will not be considered fraudulent if the transfer was consistent with past practices of the debtor, or if the transfer was received in good faith and the contribution did not exceed 15% of the gross income of the debtor. These exemptions apply only to individual debtors, and not corporate entities.

Florida’s charitable contribution exemption now closely resembles that of the federal bankruptcy code, 11 U.S.C. 548(a)(2), the main difference being the Florida law’s reference to good faith on the part of the recipient organization.

The Florida Statute exemption, § 726.109(7)(b) will now read:

(b) However, a charitable contribution from a natural person is a fraudulent transfer if the transfer was received on, or within 2 years before, the earlier of the date of commencement of an action under this chapter, the filing of a petition under the federal Bankruptcy Code, or the commencement of insolvency proceedings by or against the debtor under any state or federal law, including the filing of an assignment for the benefit of creditors or the appointment of a receiver, unless:

(1) The transfer was consistent with the practices of the debtor in making the charitable contribution; or

(2) The transfer was received in good faith and the amount of the charitable contribution did not exceed 15 percent of the gross annual income of the debtor for the year in which the transfer of the charitable contribution was made.

The bankruptcy code exemption reads as follows:

(2) A transfer of a charitable contribution to a qualified religious or charitable entity or organization shall not be considered to be a transfer covered under paragraph (1)(B) in any case in which—

(A) the amount of that contribution does not exceed 15 percent of the gross annual income of the debtor for the year in which the transfer of the contribution is made; or

(B) the contribution made by a debtor exceeded the percentage amount of gross annual income specified in subparagraph (A), if the transfer was consistent with the practices of the debtor in making charitable contributions.

3.   Physician Assistants Are Now Able to Order Controlled Substances for Hospital, Surgery Center and Mobile Surgical Facility Use

Senate Bill 398 amends Florida Statutes §§ 458.347 and 459.022, giving medical and osteopathic doctors the right to delegate the authority to “order” medications, including controlled substances, for patients in hospitals, ambulatory surgical centers, and mobile surgical facilities beginning July 1, 2013.  Under present law, a physician assistant (“PA”) under the supervision of a physician is not able to order from a list of medications referred to as a “negative formulary,” which are listed in both sections 458.347(4)(e) and 459.022(4)(e).  The list includes controlled substances, general anesthetics, and radiographic contrast materials.

There is a difference between a “prescription” and an “order.”  The term order is used in a hospital or institutional setting when an authorized practitioner (physician, physician assistant, etc.) requests a medication for an admitted patient. That order is transcribed in the patient’s medical records and is administered on site by a nurse or other licensed health care personnel. A prescription, according to the Florida Pharmacy Act, includes any order for drugs or medicinal supplies communicated by any means by a licensed practitioner authorized by the laws of the state to prescribe such. Unlike an order, which is administered by a nurse or other qualified personnel; a prescription is dispensed by a pharmacist.

The amendments authorize a supervisory physician to delegate to his or her PA the authority to order medications, including controlled substances, for the physician’s patient in any hospital, ambulatory surgical center or mobile surgical facility.

4.  Optometrists Now Able to Administer and Prescribe Some Pain Relief Medications

Licensed, certified optometrists are now authorized to give and prescribe “oral ocular pharmaceuticals agents” for pain relief.  Oral ocular pain relief sounds like what you need after experiencing the “eyes-bigger-than-stomach” phenomenon.

HB 239 – Practice of Optometry gives optometrists the ability to dispense these topically or orally administered ocular pain relief agents only after they submit proof to the DOH that they have passed a 20-hour certification course and exam.  To get the go-ahead from the DOH, proof of passing must be submitted no later than October 1, 2013.

The authority granted by the new law is limited; it prohibits optometrists from dispensing the drugs for the purpose of treating any systemic disease as well as from administering or prescribing Schedule I or II controlled substances.

Gary Teblum on the New LLC Laws – Part 2

Gary Teblum

We had the opportunity to interview Gary Teblum who is on the drafting committee for the new LLC statute.  With no further adieu you can read the second part of this interview below.  To read part 1 of this excellent interview please click here.

Gary I. Teblum, J.D., is widely known as being one of the best securities, business, and corporate lawyers in the state of Florida.  Gary’s work ethic, exactness, and high standard of practice and ethics is well known throughout Florida and much appreciated by his loyal client base and those of us who are fortunate enough to work with him.  Gary has been with the firm of Trenam Kemker Scharf Barkin Frye O’Neill and Mullis, P.A. in Tampa since 1979 and has been a shareholder since 1984. He is the co-leader of the firm’s Business Transactions Practice Group, which handles all types of business transactions including entity selection, formation and operations, mergers and acquisitions, equity and debt financing, executive compensation, ERISA and employee benefits, and business and individual tax planning and tax controversies. His work covers most of these types of transactions as well as most types of business contracts, and includes advising both publicly held and privately held companies with regard to corporate, partnership and limited liability company law, securities laws, and other various business laws impacting the operations of the clients’ respective businesses. Mr. Teblum has been active in the Business Law Section of the Florida Bar, including most recently serving as one of the core members of the drafting committee for the newly passed Florida Revised Limited Liability Company Act that is awaiting approval by the Governor. He holds a law degree from the Law School of the University of Pennsylvania and a Bachelor of Science degree in accounting from the University of Delaware.

This interview was also edited by Kenneth J. Crotty of our firm, who now has the pleasure of rewriting his chapter on limited liability companies in the Florida Bar’s book entitled Florida Small Business Practice.  We look forward to riding Ken’s coattails on this endeavor and we welcome any questions, comments, or suggestions for Ken’s chapter, or if you would like to be a beta reader please let us know.

GARY TEBLUM:     We have cleaned up the merger and conversion provisions, and in particular how these entities, both within LLCs, and also across entities, can merge or can convert either into an LLC or out of an LLC into another entity.

ALAN GASSMAN:   What are some of the provisions that provide for new concepts?

GARY TEBLUM:     We have added a few new concepts, and in particular the concepts of interest exchanges and in-bound domestications.  We did not include out-bound domestications.  For these purposes, domestications are just domestications of entities existing in other countries, not domestications of entities existing in other states.

We have also added some new events that trigger appraisal rights and we have fixed a glitch in the appraisal rights that appears in our current statute in circumstances where, for example, you are approving a merger transaction or some other type of transaction by way of a written consent.  Indeed, in this context, under the current statute, the statutory provisions just did not work.  There was a circularity to it.  In the new LLC Act, we fixed that problem and put a procedure together that we believe is relatively easy to follow and much more intuitive.

ALAN GASSMAN    Did the committee consider adopting the concept of series LLCs?

GARY TEBLUM:     We did consider whether to adopt the concept of series LLCs, similar to what exists in Delaware, but we made a determination that we did not want to go there.  We were concerned that, because of the more typical types of businesses that are forming LLCs in Florida, Series LLCs might be used improperly.  As a result, we did not want to make the concept of Series LLCs a part of the new Florida LLC Act.  We are open to possible amending the Act in the future when there has been a lot more clarification throughout the country with respect to Series LLCs.  Our decision on this parallels the Uniform Act, which does not include a provision authorizing series LLCs.

ALAN GASSMAN:   I have been asked a few times by various lawyers whether I thought you could have a Delaware Series LLC that has the separate insulated cells and have it operate in Florida and have the separated insulated cells respected here.  Have you ever looked into that?  Do you think there is any chance that would work?

GARY TEBLUM:     Yes, I think that there is a chance it works.  I will tell you, however, that the Florida Department of State has some special rule interpretations as to how the separate cells must be handled.  In particular, the DOS, requires each separate cell to be qualified to transact business in the state, so you cannot just qualify the series as a single LLC.  I believe that, based on giving full faith and credit to the law of the state of formation, Florida should respect the separateness of the cells from liability perspective because it is a matter of internal affairs. Of course, I would expect that the ability to respect the separateness will be dependent on making certain that the facts are such that no piecing of the veil argument could be successfully advanced.  On the other hand, I would caution that, as far as I know, no Florida court has addressed this separateness of liability for out-of-state series LLCs.  Remember, we did not expect the result in Olmstead.  Thus, until the actual case presents itself and there is a definitive ruling, we really have no idea what the Florida Supreme Court ultimately would do.

ALAN GASSMAN:   Should an LLC series have its own EIN?

GARY TEBLUM:     You know, I do not like series LLCs because I believe the concept should be used in only limited circumstances, which few practitioners in Florida, including me, tend to see.  Thus, my expertise with Series LLCs is very limited.  Nevertheless, my impression is that most practitioners who use Series LLCs will get a separate EIN for each series.  In this regard, remember that the Florida LLC statute – both the current statute and the new legislation, does not include a provision addressing Series LLCs.

ALAN GASSMAN:   What did the committee do about “shelf LLCs”?

GARY TEBLUM:     We also did not elect to have the new Florida LLC Act allow for what is commonly referred to as shelf LLCs.  That is where you can form an LLC and sort of hold it on a shelf.  It does not have any members, and then when you are ready to utilize it, you take it down.  We did not think it was appropriate.  The Commissioners of the Uniform Act also did not think that allowing for the formation of shelf LLCs was appropriate.  Under the new Florida LLC Act, the concept of shelf LLCs will not exist and therefore you would not be able to form an LLC in Florida unless at the time of formation the LLC has at least one member.

ALAN GASSMAN:   Gary, we cannot thank you enough, not only for spending the time to explain the above, but also for all of your hard efforts and the efforts of everyone who participated in helping Florida to vastly improve its LLC Statute.

GARY TEBLUM:     Thanks Alan. I would encourage every lawyer reading this interview to consider becoming involved with your Florida Bar section in legislative efforts.  Hundreds of hours go into this every year, and it is clearly for the betterment of our clients, our profession, and our state business community.

What to Tell Clients if and When Investigators Show Up at Their Door and What Clients Can Tell Their Employees

By: Gabriel Imperato

gimperato

Many times the government will investigate clients and their health care entities, and questions arise as to what to communicate to employees, and whether to offer them legal counsel or advice.  It is important not to interfere with a governmental investigation, but getting the right information and advice to the right people can be very important, and we are very thankful to Gabe Imperato, Esq. of the Broad and Cassel firm for the following memo that is very well written.  Gabe’s practice and contact information is as set forth below:

Gabe L. Imperato is the Managing Partner of the Fort Lauderdale office of Broad and Cassel and serves on the Firm’s Executive Committee.  He is a member of the Health Law Practice Group and is the co-chair of the Firm’s White Collar Defense and Compliance Practice Group.  Mr. Imperato’s personal practice includes representing individuals and organizations accused of health care fraud and assisting and advising health care organizations on corporate governance and compliance matters.  Mr. Imperato is board certified as a specialist in health law by the Florida Bar.  He is also certified in Health Care Compliance (HCC) by the Health Care Compliance Association, where he sits on the Board of Directors and is the Second Vice President.

He has served as Deputy Chief Counsel, Office of the General Counsel, United States Department of Health and Human Services, Dallas, Texas.  He advised and represented various agencies of the Department of Health and Human Services, including the Center for Medicare and Medicaid Services, the Public Health Service, the Social Security Administration and the Office of the Inspector General.

Gabe can be reached at Broad and Cassel, 954-745-5223 or via email at gimperato@broadandcassel.com.

Below is his memorandum:

  1. A government investigator has the right to contact you and request to speak with you.
  2. You have the right to choose whether or not to speak with any investigator.  In all situations you have the right to consult with legal counsel before you decide whether or not to talk to an investigator.
  3. The government investigator does not have the right to insist upon an interview, and it is improper for him or her to pressure you in an attempt to obtain an interview, because it is completely your choice whether or not to speak with any investigator.
  4. If you decide to refuse an interview, you should politely, but firmly decline the investigator’s request, but ask him or her for agency and contact information.
  5. Since you are not required to submit to an interview, if you decide that you are willing to submit to one, you have the right to insist upon any precondition you desire.  For example, you may require that the interview be conducted only in the presence of legal counsel.  In some situations, your employer will pay for the cost of an attorney to represent you.
  6. Regardless of your decision, if you are contacted by a government investigator, it is extremely helpful if you immediately contact your supervisor at your place of employment and/or legal counsel.

You have every legal right to tell your employer about the government contact.  The agent may request or suggest that you keep the contact confidential, but there is no law that would prevent you from disclosing any detail of your discussion with the agents.  An employer should expect employees to advise of such government contacts.

  1. Employees often wonder what their employer would prefer.  The answer is that the decision is truly yours.  However, most employers (and their lawyers) would strongly encourage you to conduct the interview with legal counsel present.
  2. Under all circumstances, remember that you must tell the truth to government agents.  Failure to do so may, in and of itself, be a violation of the law.
  3. Do not destroy any documents or attempt to hide evidence under any circumstances.

 

Man and Sanders.200

Gabe’s partner, Lester Perling and Alan Gassman recorded a webinar called Unannounced Medicare Audits – What To Do If Investigators Come to Your Office, which can be viewed by clicking here.

Our New Tampa Office Finally Gets It’s Sign!

The rent check has cleared

The sign has been erected

Tom Ellwanger is ready

To get your problems corrected.

Tampa Sign Pic

Lawyers in History: The Impact of Law Practice on their Lives and Careers: James K. Polk

James K. Polk

James Polk

James K. Polk (extra Thursday Report points if you “kno”w what the K stands for) probably doesn’t get the common attention and accolades he deserves for his performance as the 11th President of the United States.  Scholars, however, have noted his importance to the early United States, with the Daily Beast recently calling him the “least known consequential president.”  Thanks to his leadership, our nation made its greatest territorial expansion since the Louisiana Purchase during his sole term in the White House.

Under Polk’s stead, the United States annexed the Oregon territory, which today makes up Oregon, Idaho, Washington and the Republic of Texas, leading to a slight misunderstanding with Mexico that culminated in the 1846 Mexican-American War, and added what is today California, Nevada, Utah, most of Arizona, and parts of New Mexico, Colorado and Wyoming through the Treaty of Guadalupe Hidalgo that ended the Mexican-American War.

James Polk attended the of North Carolina.  After graduating with honors, he studied law under a Nashville trial attorney, and was admitted to the bar in 1820.  For his first case, he defended a client with a public fighting charge.  Polk got a mixed verdict – his client was released, but fined one dollar.  The client?  His father.

Polk began his political career in the House of Representatives, and later became Speaker of the House (1835), Governor of Tennessee, and became the youngest man at the time to become president in 1845.

And Polk’s one-term presidency was not a result of his failure to win re-election, quite the opposite.  When he ran in 1845 he promised he would not seek a second term, and he kept his word.

Our Favorite Animal Poems by Ogden Nash

            If you or your children have never read Ogden Nash buy some of his books immediately.  He was truly a genius for his time, and the favorite poet for many.  Anyone who would like to co-write the tax song of J. Alfred Prufrock can contact us immediately.

The Camel

 The camel has a single hump.

The dromedary two.

Or else the other way around.

I’m not sure, are you?

 The Dog

The truth I do not stretch or shove

When I state that the dog is full of love.

I’ve also found, by actual test,

A wet dog is the lovingest.

The Duck

Behold the duck.

It does not cluck.

A cluck it lacks.

It quacks.

It is specially fond

Of a puddle or pond.

When it dines or sups,

It bottoms ups.

The Termite

Some primal termite knocked on wood

And tasted it, and found it good!

And that is why your Cousin May

Fell through the parlor floor today.

The Panther

The panther is like a leopard,

Except it hasn’t been peppered.

Should you behold a panther crouch,

Prepare to say Ouch.

Better yet, if called by a panther,

Don’t anther.

Puma from Yuma

A jolly young fellow from Yuma

Told an elephant joke to a puma;

now his skeleton lies

beneath hot western skies-

the puma had no sense of huma”

-      Ogden Nash

Applicable Federal Rates

Please click here to view a chart of this month’s, last month’s, and the preceding month’s Applicable Federal Rates, because for a sale you can use the lowest of the 3.

Seminars and Webinars

  • SUNCOAST CHAPTER OF THE FICPA MONTHLY MEETING

Alan Gassman will be speaking on the topic of 2 FASCINATING PLANNING SESSIONS: (A) ESTATE AND INCOME TAX PLANNING – 2013; and (B) THE CPA’S GUIDE TO ASSET PROTECTION FOR PROFESSIONALS AND PROFESSIONAL PRACTICES

Date:  Thursday, June 20, 2013 | 4:00 – 7:00 p.m. (3 HOUR PRESENTATION)

Speakers:       Alan S. Gassman and Christopher J. Denicolo

Location:        Feathersound Country Club, Clearwater, Florida

Additional Information: If you would like to attend this meeting or receive a copy of the materials please email agassman@gassmanpa.com

  • THE 444 SHOW – FORENSIC EXAMINATION OF INSURANCE POLICIES

Date:  Thursday, June 27, 2013 | 4:00 – 4:50 pm

Speaker:         Dennis Wall, Esq.

Location:        Online webinar

Sponsor:         The Clearwater Bar Association

Additional Information: To register for this webinar please click here or email Janine@gassmanpa.com

  • LUNCH TALK – MEDICAL PRIVACY LAWS – HOW TO HANDLE STICKY SITUATIONS (WHAT EVERY LAWYER NEEDS TO KNOW)

Date:  Monday, July 1, 2013 | 12:30 p.m. (30 MINUTE PRESENATION)

Speaker: The Amazing Lester Perling, J.D., M.H.A.

Location: Online webinar

Sponsor: The Clearwater Bar Association

Additional Information: To register please visit www.clearwaterbar.org or email Janine Ruggiero at Janine@gassmanpa.com

  • FLORIDA HEALTH CARE LAW CHANGES: HOW THEY AFFECT PHYSICIANS AND MEDICAL ENTERPRISES WEBINAR

Date:  Tuesday, July 2, 2013 | 12:30 p.m. – 1:00 p.m. and Wednesday, July 10, 2013 | 5:00 p.m. – 5:30 p.m.

Speakers: Healthcare Expert Lester Perling, J.D., M.H.A. and Alan S. Gassman, J.D., LL.M.

Location: Online webinar.

Additional Information: To register for the July 2nd at 12:30 p.m. webinar please click here.   To register for the July 10th at 5:00 p.m. webinar please click here.

  •  BP OIL SPILL CLAIMS – AVOID MISTAKES AND MAXIMIZE CLAIMS

Date: Wednesday, July 17, 2013 | 5:00 p.m. – 5:30 p.m.

Speakers: John Goldsmith, Esq. and Alan S. Gassman

Location: Online webinar

Additional Information:  To register for this webinar please click here.

  •  MEDICAL EDUCATION RESOURCES PRIMARY CARE CONFERENCE

Alan Gassman will be speaking on the topic of LEGAL, TAX AND FINANCIAL BOOT CAMP FOR THE MEDICAL PRACTICE – A SPECIAL TAX, ESTATE PLANNING AND LAW CONFERENCE FOR PRIMARY CARE PHYSICIANS

Date: July 19 – 21, 2013 (Friday – Sunday mornings; Have fun at Disney in the afternoons and we will not ask what you do at night!)

Topic:         1)             The 10 Biggest Mistakes That Physicians Make In Their Investments and Business Planning

9am – 10am on Friday, July 19, 2013

2)             Lawsuits 101

                                                10:10 am – 11:10 am on Friday, July 19, 2013

3)             Essential Estate Planning

                                                11:10 am – 11:40 am on Friday, July 19, 2013

4)             Asset Entity Planning for Creditor Protection and Buy Sell Arrangements

10:10 am – 11:10 am on Saturday, July 20, 2013

                    5)             50 Ways to Leave Your Overhead – How to Enhance Medical Practice Profitability

11:40 am – 12:40 pm on Saturday, July 20, 2013

                    6)             Stark Naked, or Well Prepared? – Health Law Compliance

9:00 am – 10:00 am on Sunday, July 21, 2013

Location: Disney’s Boardwalk Resort, Orlando, Florida

Topics by Other Speakers: 2013 Tax Changes, Tax Deductions for Physicians, Medical Practice Financial Management, Physician Compensation, Tax Structures for Medical Practices and Retirement Plan Options for Physicians.

Additional Information:  For more information please visit www.MER.org  Friends and colleagues of The Thursday Report can attend at the special rate of $495 (a savings of $200).  To receive the discount when registering please call 800-421-3756 or visit their website www.MER.org and on the payment page select “other” when registering.  The Thursday Report and Gassman Law Associates, P.A. derive no compensation from attendees or recommending clients to attend this program.

Rooms have been blocked off at Disney Boardwalk Hotel.  The group rate is $229 per night (before taxes).  You can make your reservations for your hotel through the MER website as well.  Locate the conference by either location or subject, click on “Program Information” and then “Accommodations” and then on “Reservation Link.”  If you would like to call Disney directly to make your reservations please call 407-934-3372 and let them know the group code of G0611977.

Please note that the program qualifies for continuing education credit for physicians.

  • WEDU ESTATE PLANNING SEMINAR

Gassman Law Associates meets Big Bird – Sesame Street vs. Wall Street?

Alan Gassman will be speaking on the topic of ASSET PROTECTION – ESSENTIAL KNOWLEDGE AND HOT TOPICS

Leading trust law expert Bruce Stone, Esq. will also speak on a topic to be determined.

Date: Thursday, September 19, 2013 | 7:30 am – 11:30 am

Location: TBD

Additional Information:  If you would like to sign up for this seminar please email agassman@gassmanpa.com

  • NOTRE DAME TAX INSTITUTE

Jerry Hesch and Alan Gassman will be speaking on the topic of INTERESTING INTEREST QUESTIONS, PLANNING WITH LOW INTEREST LOANS, PRIVATE ANNUITIES, DEFECTIVE GRANTOR TRUSTS, AND PRIVATE AND COMMERCIAL ANNUITIES

Date: Wednesday, October 16 through Friday, October 18, 2013

Location: Notre Dame College, South Bend, Indiana

Additional Information: Professor Jerry Hesch’s Notre Dame Tax Institute will once again emphasize the importance of income tax planning and implications in addition to estate, estate tax, and related concepts.

Email us now to get your football tickets to the Notre Dame-USC game on October 19.

We welcome questions, comments and suggestions for the presentation that we are assisting Jerry in preparing and presenting.

 

  • 2nd ANNUAL PINELLAS COUNTY ESTATE PLANNING SEMINAR

Alan Gassman will be speaking on the topic of HOT TOPICS FOR ESTATE PLANNERS

Date: Wednesday, October 23, 2013 | 7:30 am – 12:00 p.m. (60 MINUTE PRESENTATION)

Location: Ruth Eckerd Hall, Clearwater, Florida

Additional Information: In addition to Alan Gassman, Sean Casey, Director, Reigional Portfolio Management and Senior Vice President with Fifth Third in Naples, Fl., Sandra F. Diamond, Esq. of Williamson, Diamond & Caton, P.A. and Barry D. Flagg, CFP, CLU, ChFC will be speaking on topics of interest.  The cost to attend the meeting is $75.00.  To attend the meeting or to receive information on joining the Council please click here or email Ellen Mantegna at emantegna@verizon.net  This seminar qualifies for 4 hours of continuing education credit for attorneys, CPAs, CFPs, CTFAs and CLUs.

  •  2013 MOTE VASCULAR SURGERY FELLOWS – FACTS OF LIFE TALK SEMINAR FOR FIRST YEAR SURGEONS

Alan Gassman will be speaking on the topic of ESTATE, MEDICAL PRACTICE, RETIREMENT, TAX, INSURANCE, AND BUY/SELL PLANNING – THE EARLIER YOU START THE SOONER YOU WILL BE SECURE

Date: October 25 – 27, 2013 | Times TBD

Location: TBD

Additional Information: Please contact agassman@gassmanpa.com for additional information.

  • NEW JERSEY INSTITUTE FOR CONTINUING LEGAL EDUCATION (ICLE) HEALTH LAW SYMPOSIUM – AN ALL DAY SEMINAR

Alan Gassman will be speaking on the topic of WHAT HEALTH LAWYERS NEED TO KNOW ABOUT FLORIDA LAW

Date: Friday, November 1, 2013 | 9am – 5pm (Mr. Gassman speaks from 1:10 pm until 2:10 p.m.)

Location: Seton Hall Law School, Newark, New Jersey

Additional Information: Seton Hall University in South Orange, New Jersey was founded in 1856, and they have remodeled since.  Today, Seton Hall has over 10,000 students in its undergraduate, graduate and law school programs and is in close proximity to several Kentucky Fried Chicken locations.

  • NEW JERSEY INSTITUTE FOR CONTINUING LEGAL EDUCATION (ICLE)_SPECIAL 3 HOUR SESSION

Alan Gassman will be speaking on the topic of WHAT NEW JERSEY LAWYERS NEED TO KNOW ABOUT FLORIDA LAW – A 3 HOUR OVERVIEW BY ALAN S. GASSMAN

Date: Saturday, November 2, 2013

Location: Wilshire Grand Hotel, West Orange, New Jersey | 9am – 12pm

Additional Information: Please tell all of your friends, neighbors and enemies in New Jersey to come out to support this important presentation for the New Jersey Bar Association.  We will include discussions of airboats, how to get an alligator off of your driveway, how to peel a navel orange and what collard greens and grits are. For additional information please email agassman@gassmanpa.com

  • SALT LAKE CITY ESTATE PLANNING COUNCIL’S FALL ONE DAY “TAX AND DEDUCTIBILITY OF YOUR SKI TRIP” INSTITUTE

Alan Gassman will be speaking on the topic of PRACTICAL ESTATE PLANNING, WITH A $5.25 MILLION EXEMPTION AMOUNT

Date: Thursday, November 7, 2013

Location: Hilton Downtown Salt Lake City, Utah

Additional Information:  Please support this one day annual seminar conveniently located near skiing and tourism opportunities.  If you would like to attend this event or receive the materials please email agassman@gassmanpa.com

NOTABLE SEMINARS PRESENTED BY OTHERS:

  • 48th ANNUAL HECKERLING INSTITUTE ON ESTATE PLANNING SEMINAR

Date: January 13 – 17, 2014

Location:  Orlando World Center Marriott, Orlando, Florida

Sponsor: University of Miami School of Law

Additional Information: For more information please visit: http://www.law.miami.edu/heckerling/

  • 16th ANNUAL ALL CHILDREN’S HOSPITAL ESTATE, TAX, LEGAL & FINANCIAL PLANNING SEMINAR

Date: Wednesday, February 12, 2014

Location: All Children’s Hospital Education and Conference Center, St. Petersburg, Florida with remote location live interactive viewings in Tampa, Sarasota, New Port Richey, Lakeland, and Bangkok, Thailand

Sponsor: All Children’s Hospital

  • THE UNIVERSITY OF FLORIDA TAX INSTITUTE

Date: February 19 – 21, 2014

Location: Grand Hyatt, Tampa, Florida

Sponsor:  UF Law alumni and UF Graduate Tax Program

Additional Information:  Here is what UF is saying about the program on its website: “The UF Tax Institute will provide tax practitioners and other leading tax, business and estate planning professionals with a program that covers the most current issues and planning ideas with a practical, informative, state-of-the-art approach.  The Institute’s schedule will devote separate days or half days to individual income tax issues, entity tax issues and estate planning issues.  Speakers and presentations will be announced as the program date nears to ensure coverage of the most timely and significant topics.  UF Law alumni have formed the Florida Tax Education Foundation, Inc., a nonprofit corporation, to organize the conference.”

For details about each event, please visit us online at gassmanlawassociates.com/newsandevents.html

Alan S. Gassman, J.D., LL.M. is a practicing lawyer and author based in Clearwater, Florida. Mr. Gassman is the founder of the firm Gassman Law Associates, P.A., which focuses on the representation of physicians, high net worth individuals, and business owners in estate planning, taxation, and business and personal matters.  He is the lead author on Bloomberg BNA’s Estate Tax Planning and 2011 and 2012, Creditor Protection for Florida Physicians, Gassman & Markham on Florida and Federal Asset Protection Law, A Practical Guide to Kickback and Self-Referral Laws for Florida Physicians, The Florida Physician Advertising Handbook  and The Florida Guide to Prescription, Controlled Substance and Pain Medicine Laws, among others.  Mr. Gassman is a frequent speaker for continuing education programs, publishes regularly for Bloomberg BNA Tax & Accounting, Estates and Trusts Magazine, Estate Planning Magazine and Leimberg Estate Planning Network (LISI).  He holds a law degree and a Masters of Law degree (LL.M.) in Taxation from the University of Florida, and a business degree from Rollins College.  Mr. Gassman is board certified by the Florida Bar Association in Estate Planning and Trust Law, and has the Accredited Estate Planner designation for the National Association of Estate Planners & Councils.  Mr. Gassman’s email is Agassman@gassmanpa.com.

Thomas J. Ellwanger, J.D., is a lawyer practicing at the Clearwater, Florida firm of Gassman Law Associates, P.A.  Mr. Ellwanger received his B.A. in 1970 from Northwestern University and his J.D. with honors in 1974 from the University of Florida College of Law.  His practice areas include estate planning, trust and estate administration, personal tax planning and charitable tax planning.  Mr. Ellwanger is a member of the American College of Trusts and Estates Counsel (ACTEC). His email address is tom@gassmanpa.com.

Christopher Denicolo, J.D., LL.M. is a partner at the Clearwater, Florida law firm of Gassman Law Associates, P.A., where he practices in the areas of estate tax and trust planning, taxation, physician representation, and corporate and business law.  He has co-authored several handbooks that have been featured in Bloomberg BNA Tax & Accounting, Steve Leimberg’s Estate Planning and Asset Protection Planning Newsletters, and the Florida Bar Journal. He is also the author of the Federal Income Taxation of the Business Entity Chapter of the Florida Bar’s Florida Small Business Practice, Seventh Edition. Mr. Denicolo received his B.A. and B.S. degrees from Florida State University, his J.D. from Stetson University College of Law, and his LL.M. (Estate Planning) from the University of Miami.  His email address is Christopher@gassmanpa.com.

Kenneth J. Crotty, J.D., LL.M., is a partner at the Clearwater, Florida law firm of Gassman Law Associates, P.A., where he practices in the areas of estate tax and trust planning, taxation, physician representation, and corporate and business law. Mr. Crotty has co-authored several handbooks that have been published in BNA Tax & Accounting, Estate Planning, Steve Leimberg’s Estate Planning and Asset Protection Planning Newsletters, Estate Planning magazine, and Practical Tax Strategies.  Mr. Crotty is also the author of the Limited Liability Company Chapter of the Florida Bar’s Florida Small Business Practice, Seventh Edition. He, Alan Gassman and Christopher Denicolo are the co-authors of the BNA book Estate Tax Planning in 2011 & 2012.  Mr. Crotty is board certified by the Florida Bar Association in Tax Law. His email address is Ken@gassmanpa.com.

Thank you to our law clerks that assisted us in preparing this report.

The Thursday Report – June 13, 2013 – New Laws, Interview with Gary Teblum, 171 Ways to Measure BP Oil Spill Claims, 1984 – What did Snowden Reveal?

Posted on: June 13th, 2013

No Comments

Laws Signed by the Governor

The Gary Teblum Interview – What is Going on With the New Florida LLC Law – Demystifying the Demystification

Did You Know That There are 171 Ways to Measure BP Oil Spill Claims for Your Firm or Others?  Do Not Make 170 Mistakes By Having Your Clients Choose the Wrong Claim Method

Back to 1984? – Exactly What Did Edward Snowden Reveal?

Lawyers in History: Some Gave Their Lives, and Some Even Lost Their Heads Over Making Political Changes 

We welcome contributions for future Thursday Report topics. If you are interested in making a contribution as a guest writer, please email Janine Ruggiero at Janine@gassmanpa.com.

This report and other Thursday Reports can be found on our website at www.gassmanlawassociates.com.

Laws Signed by the Governor

As of June 12th, 2013 the Governor has signed 156 new laws into effect.  You can see a list of these laws at http://www.flgov.com/bill-action/.

NO MORE TEXTING AND DRIVING! It is now a crime.

One of the bills Governor Scott recently signed into law is the ban on texting while driving which will go into effect on October 1, 2013. Although the law has many exceptions, the anti-texting bill is expected to increase safety on the roads while decreasing distracted drivers who have their eyes in their laps, instead of on what is in front of them. The law makes texting a secondary offense, which means that if a police officer sees a driver texting he cannot pull the driver over for that alone.  There must be another reason to pull the driver over. It is permissible for a driver to use a cell phone to look up directions, to text while stopped at red lights, to report crimes or receive messages about weather, and to use talk-to-text.  We strongly encourage everyone we know to not use a cell phone whatsoever while driving.  It is extremely dangerous, and in an accident the cell phone could be damaged.

A sampling of the Bills that were signed include:

HB/SB

Num

Title

Sponsor

Action Date

Disposition

HB

49

Drug Paraphernalia

Rouson

6.5.13

Signed

HB

77

Landlords and Tenants

Porter

6.7.13

Signed

HB

239

Practice of Optometry

Caldwell

4.19.13

Signed

SB

294

Controlled Substances

Bradley

4.24.13

Signed

SB

342

Rental of Homestead Property

Thrasher

5.30.13

Signed

HB

423

Tax on Sales, Use & Other Transactions

Adkins

5.30.13

Signed

SB

464

Disposition of Unclaimed Property

Flores

4.29.13

Signed

HB

667

Real Estate Brokers & Appraisers

Porter

6.7.13

Signed

HB

913

Holocaust Victims Assistance Act

Bileca

6.7.13

Signed

HB

935

Florida False Claims Act

Young

6.3.13

Signed

HB

939

Medicaid Recoveries

Pigman

6.7.13

Signed

HB

1071

Health Care Accrediting Organizations

Antone

5.30.13

Signed

HB

1093

Volunteer Health Services

Hudson

6.7.13

Signed

SB

1792

Medical Negligence Actions

Judiciary

6.5.13

Signed

SB

1830

Ad Valorem Taxation

Approps

5.30.13

Signed

SB

1844

Florida Health Choices Program

Health Policy

6.5.13

Signed

SB

1842

Health Insurance

Banking & Insurance

5.31.13

Signed

We thank the legislature and Governor Scott for providing us with new laws that can be applied to improve the situations of our clients.  The challenge for us as professionals is to first recognize what these new laws are, and to secondly advise clients as to how these change what they do, while thirdly becoming masters of new law systems and determining how to integrate these into our practices.

We thank our new summer law clerks, Nathan West, J.D., LL.M. (who is working for us before beginning his formal career with KPMG in September), Corinna Cicmanec, J.D. (who will be entering an LL.M. in taxation program in the fall), and Stetson law students, Eric Brooks and Josh Foutz, for helping us to first assimilate what has been signed and not signed, then identify what the exact changes are, and finally put these changes into being in written form and integrate as appropriately into our existing Haddon Hall Publishing books.

We will be sharing this process and its products with Thursday Report readers in the upcoming weeks, and welcome any and all questions, comments, suggestions and contributions in this process.

This is a very exciting time for these new law clerks, and hopefully for you as Thursday Report readers.  One thing that we have noticed about many of our readers is the continuing enthusiasm and enjoyment that legal, tax, accounting, and financial advisory services allow us to enjoy.

And that’s without the corny jokes about Kentucky Fried Chicken, which we promise will never end.

The Gary Teblum Interview – What is Going on With the New Florida LLC Law – Demystifying the Demystification

Gary Teblum

We had the opportunity to interview Gary Teblum who is on the drafting committee for the new LLC statute.  With no further adieu you can read this interview below:

Gary I. Teblum, J.D., is widely known as being one of the best securities, business, and corporate lawyers in the state of Florida.  Gary’s work ethic, exactness, and high standard of practice and ethics is well known throughout Florida and much appreciated by his loyal client base and those of us who are fortunate enough to work with him.  Gary has been with the firm of Trenam Kemker Scharf Barkin Frye O’Neill and Mullis, P.A. in Tampa since 1979 and has been a shareholder since 1984. He is the co-leader of the firm’s Business Transactions Practice Group, which handles all types of business transactions including entity selection, formation and operations, mergers and acquisitions, equity and debt financing, executive compensation, ERISA and employee benefits, and business and individual tax planning and tax controversies. His work covers most of these types of transactions as well as most types of business contracts, and includes advising both publicly held and privately held companies with regard to corporate, partnership and limited liability company law, securities laws, and other various business laws impacting the operations of the clients’ respective businesses. Mr. Teblum has been active in the Business Law Section of the Florida Bar, including most recently serving as one of the core members of the drafting committee for the newly passed Florida Revised Limited Liability Company Act that is awaiting approval by the Governor. He holds a law degree from the Law School of the University of Pennsylvania and a Bachelor of Science degree in accounting from the University of Delaware.

This interview was also edited by Kenneth J. Crotty of our firm, who now has the pleasure of rewriting his chapter on limited liability companies in the Florida Bar’s book entitled Florida Small Business Practice.  We look forward to riding Ken’s coattails on this endeavor.

Below is part 1 of this interview, which will be continued next Thursday:

ALAN GASSMAN:    Gary, thank you for joining us today to tell us what is going on with the Florida Limited Liability Company Act, and in particular this new statute that you had a big hand in helping to draft.

GARY TEBLUM:       Thank you Alan, and I am happy to be here today as well.

ALAN GASSMAN:    Gary, let us start with the history of this Act.  When was it last revised?

GARY TEBLUM: The existing Act which is in force and effect now and appears in Chapter 608 is a very dated statute. The last major revision was in 1999. Although there were some limited changes in 2002 and 2005, there really has not been a complete overhaul done of that statute for almost 14 years now. Accordingly, in 2008, the decision was made to do a comprehensive review and overhaul.

ALAN GASSMAN: How did the committee decide which law to follow for revising the Act?

GARY TEBLUM: We formed a joint bar committee and evaluated the various options as to the way in which we could remake the Florida statute. Here are the options we considered. We could keep the current statute structure as it is and just update it. We could follow what was promulgated as the American Bar Association prototype Limited Liability Company Act. We could follow the Delaware approach, and as I am sure you all know Delaware is often used as a model state for many types of business entities including limited liability companies and has a lot of flexibility in its law, but the Delaware LLC Act, from a structural standpoint, is not always easy to follow. In addition, the Delaware LLC Act tends to be somewhat liberal in terms of the balancing of interest. Another option was that we could follow the Revised Uniform Limited Liability Company Act (hereinafter the “Uniform Act”) which was promulgated by the Uniform Law Commissioners in 2006 and then subsequently updated in 2011. So after substantial evaluation, the committee decided to use the Uniform Act as its base.

ALAN GASSMAN: What were the benefits of using the Uniform Act?

GARY TEBLUM: As you know, by way of analogy, many states, such as Florida, follow the revised Model Business Corporation Act, as the base for their respective corporate statutes. By using the Model Act, it helps to create uniformity across the country and allows for additional court decisions to be available from one state to the next because the same language, that uniform language, is being interpreted. Similarly, it is believed that the Uniform Act will serve as the model for LLC acts in many of the states and thus provide Florida law with benefits comparable to having used the Model Act for the Florida corporate statute. In addition, the Uniform Act provides a much improved structure and organization. Indeed, one of the problems with the current Florida LLC Act is that it is often hard to find provisions. The provisions of that Act are not necessarily in a logical order because the current Florida LLC Act was built somewhat as a patchwork. Finally, the Uniform Act is accompanied by a commentary, and that commentary provides explanations for situations where the new Florida LLC Act follows the language of the Uniform Act and thus should provide some guidance to practitioners in interpreting the new provisions.

ALAN GASSMAN: Was there any case law that specifically affected this process?

GARY TEBLUM: In the midst of our drafting process, a decision of the Florida Supreme Court came along known as the Olmstead decision. That was in 2010, which put a real crimp in the entire process. Specifically, the case raised a concern relative to whether LLCs in Florida really were providing the asset protection for membership interests that was necessarily being provided in other states because there was some question as to whether or not, as a result of that decision, charging orders would be the exclusive remedy for a lien creditor of a member against such member’s membership interests in limited liability companies in Florida.

ALAN GASSMAN: How did that affect the work of the committee?

GARY TEBLUM: The committee had to stop its entire overhaul process to instead focus on fixing the havoc and negativity that was created by the Florida Supreme Court’s Olmstead decision. Our refocused efforts resulted in the enactment in 2011 of specifically-focused Florida legislation that we have come to refer to as the Olmstead patch. The Olmstead patch was designed to preserve the concept of a charging order as the exclusive remedy with respect to interests in multi-member limited liability companies in Florida. Under the patch, the exclusivity of remedy does not apply with respect to membership interests in single member LLCs. The Olmstead patch legislation went a long way towards solving the problem presented by the Olmstead decision and in making Florida, again, a place where people were encouraged to form LLCs and utilize LLCs for purposes of their business planning and asset protection planning. After the process of getting the Olmstead patch in place, the committee was able to resume the process of addressing the entire LLC statute, ultimately resulting in proposing a complete overhaul of the limited liability company statute for consideration in the 2013 legislative session in Florida.

ALAN GASSMAN: So what has happened in 2013 with the bill so far?

GARY TEBLUM: That statute, that proposed bill, passed the Florida Senate fairly early on in the legislative session and then it passed the Florida House on the very last day, as the very last bill that was considered by the House. The bill is Senate Bill 1300. It’s still not yet been presented to the Governor. (Since the interview, the bill was presented to the Governor on June 10th.) We are hopeful that the Governor will sign it. After the bill is presented to him, the Governor would still have 15 days to make a decision as to whether to veto it, sign it, or just allow it to become law without any action. Nevertheless, we do expect the Governor to sign this legislation; as a result, we believe that this legislation, which we expect to take effect at the start of 2014, is something that practitioners need to be aware of and should already be studying carefully.

ALAN GASSMAN: What are some of the key aspects of this legislation?

GARY TEBLUM: One of the key elements, as I mentioned before, is that our current limited liability company statute appears in Chapter 608, but the new LLC statute will actually appear in an entirely different chapter of the Florida Statutes, Chapter 605. The reason it was moved is because we wanted to try to parallel the section numbers that appear in the uniform statute that was promulgated by the Uniform Commissioners, and in order to do that we needed to move the statute to a new chapter because the available section numbers that we needed in Chapter 608 were either being used currently or had previously been used.

ALAN GASSMAN: How will this affect asset protection?

GARY TEBLUM: From an asset protection standpoint, the Olmstead patch as I described it above, is being brought forward essentially intact.

ALAN GASSMAN: What are some of the other key features of this new legislation?

GARY TEBLUM: The legislation presents a more modern and well organized statute and thus should make Florida much more welcoming to businesses, striking a very reasonable balance between business operators and creditors. And I will tell you that the committee that worked on this and the section that approved it compromise a number of lawyers who are not only business lawyers but also business litigators and creditors= rights lawyers, and so we made sure we looked at the legislation from the perspective of protecting not just people who were trying to do asset protection but also creditors as well and we believe we struck a very good balance, one which I think is going to be well received by the business community.

ALAN GASSMAN: Through the operating agreement or other contractual documents, the provisions in this statute governing operations of an LLC can be overridden or modified, right?

GARY TEBLUM: It is still as it is currently, a default statute. That means that the statute provides default provisions for what is part of a limited liability company=s operating agreement, which is the limited liability company agreement. As an aside, for those who often use Delaware limited liability companies, I would note that the operating agreement is the equivalent of the limited liability company agreement in Delaware. In other words, because of the default provision nature of the statute, if an item that is at issue is not specifically addressed in the operating agreement, that statute fills in the gap and provides the filler provision. Nevertheless, freedom of contract is still a very overreaching aspect of this and allows most of the default provisions in the statute to be modified and changed. However, and this is important, there remain certain default provisions that are not waivable. They cannot be changed. And these provisions appear in Section 605.0105 of the statute contained in this new legislation. It is comparable to the non-waivable provisions that exist in the current statute which appear in Section 608.423 but Section 605.0105 includes a much more comprehensive list of non-waivable provisions.

ALAN GASSMAN: Who will be affected by this new Act?

GARY TEBLUM: It is important for any lawyers who are dealing with this new statute to know that there are transition rules and that they are critical. Limited liability companies that are created on or after January 1, 2014 will be governed by the new Act and all limited liability companies, no matter when formed, must comply with the new Act beginning January 1, 2015, in other words a year later. However, existing limited liability companies, i.e., those that are in existence as of December 31, 2014, can elect early application of the new statute. But if one makes that election, it is an all or none election. You cannot pick and choose which sections you want to abide by. Either you are under Chapter 608 or you are under Chapter 605 during the transition period.

ALAN GASSMAN: Will limited liability companies be considered as member managed or manager managed if not specified in the operating agreement?

GARY TEBLUM: The new statute reaffirms that the default type of a limited liability company is what is commonly referred to as a member managed limited liability company. You can make an election in your articles or in your operating agreement to be manager managed, if you want to be by affirmatively stating this. Otherwise the LLC will be deemed to be member managed. This impacts agency authority of members and managers, and in the new statute we retain the statutory apparent authority of members, in that members will continue to have the power to bind the entity in a member managed limited liability company. This differs from the Uniform Act which looks solely to the common law of agency in determining whether someone could bind or not bind the limited liability company. Nevertheless, in helping to provide more flexibility, we added the concept of the ability to file statements of authority, similar to a concept used with respect to partnerships in Florida right now. Those statements of authority can outline the parameters of the authority of a particular member or manager, including any limitations on that authority.

ALAN GASSMAN: Does this affect member titles within the limited liability company?

GARY TEBLUM: Those of you who have dealt with Florida limited liability companies in the past, you probably have utilized the term managing member. That concept is going to be gone under the new statute. There was a view that the concept of a managing member created confusion between whether an entity was member managed or manager managed. Therefore it was the decision of the drafting committee, which is the same view of many other statutes around the country, that the concept of managing member should be eliminated. Now, despite this statutory change, I suspect that it will be a long time before people stop using this terminology. But understand that under the new statute, that term will not be part of the lexicon.

ALAN GASSMAN: How will this affect fiduciary duties?

GARY TEBLUM: We decided, in contrast to the approach taken in Delaware to not allow for the entire elimination of all fiduciary duties. For those of you who deal with the Delaware LLC statutes, you may know that there is an ability, through your limited liability company agreement, to elect to entirely eliminate all fiduciary duties, although you cannot eliminate the obligation of good faith and fair dealing. In Florida, we believe that complete elimination of fiduciary duties was not appropriate and rather that there should continue to be minimum fiduciary duties that are required and that will exist and thus be included as one of the non-waivable provisions. Those core duties are the duty of care and the duty of loyalty. However, under the new Act, although they cannot be eliminated, both of these duties can be circumscribed. The duty for care, for example, is no longer going to be tied to the business judgment rules standards that you find in a corporation. Rather we are following what is in the Uniform Act, which is basically a duty to refrain from engaging in grossly negligent or reckless conduct, and willful or intentional misconduct.

ALAN GASSMAN: Is there any effect on judicial dissolution of limited liability companies?

GARY TEBLUM: We tried real hard to clean up the rules and procedures for judicial dissolution and the appointment of receivers, which we believed was hard to follow in the existing statute.

ALAN GASSMAN: Did you address service of process?

GARY TEBLUM: Yes, we did. The litigators in Florida should be very happy. In this legislation, the current existing confusion in terms of how to make service of process on a limited liability company in the context of Florida litigation has been cleaned up and fixed in the new statute.

ALAN GASSMAN: Will this affect any filing requirements with the State of Florida?

GARY TEBLUM: A significant change is that any and all records that you file with the Department of State in Florida with respect to a limited liability company can be corrected at any time under the new statute. As you may know, the existing statute only allows for the correction of Articles of Organization, that is the initial filing, and that correction could only occur within 30 days after the Articles are filed. But under the new statute you can correct at any time indefinitely into the future. The only qualifier is that anyone who has relied on the record in the period between the original filing of the document and the filing of the correction would not be bound by the correction to the extent of action taken in such reliance during that period and thus the change would not have a retroactive effect on a person who has relied on the previous record.

ALAN GASSMAN: Are there any changes to disassociation?

GARY TEBLUM: There is a new provision to allow members to file statements of disassociation and a manager to file a statement of resignation to put the world on notice that they are no longer associated with the particular entity. This comes up often when a person is no longer associated with the entity and such person wants the public record to show that he or she is not associated, and yet the entity itself is not filing anything to show that such person has been removed. So this allows the person to file something individually to put the world on notice in that regard.

ALAN GASSMAN: Are there any changes to merger provisions?

Check back next week for the answer to this question and what Gary thinks about using Delaware series LLCs in Florida, shelf LLCs, and what new concepts were added by the new Florida LLC Act.

Gary’s short list of the best restaurants in Tampa and shoe size will also be provided.

Did You Know That There are 171 Ways to Measure BP Oil Spill Claims for Your Firm or Others? Do Not Make 170 Mistakes by Having Your Clients Choose the Wrong Method

Please join our free webinar on Wednesday, July 17, 2013 from 5:00 – 5:30 pm with Gary Teblum’s partner, John Goldsmith and Alan S. Gassman on this important topic.

  • BP OIL SPILL CLAIMS – AVOID MISTAKES AND MAXIMIZE CLAIMS

Date: Wednesday, July 17, 2013 5:00 p.m. – 5:30 p.m.

Speakers: John Goldsmith, Esq. and Alan S. Gassman

 Location: Online webinar

 Additional Information:  To register for this webinar please click here.

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Back to 1984? – Exactly What Did Edward Snowden Reveal?

Edward Snowden, a former intelligence worker, released classified documents regarding the National Security Agency’s attempt to track and monitor cell phone calls, e-mail, and internet activity.  Pursuant to a secret Court Order which was recently published by the Guardian newspaper, the NSA has been receiving information from Verizon Business Network Services.  U.S. officials have acknowledged gathering domestic telephone records which show the time and date of calls and the telephone numbers involved.  The secret Court Order seems to also allow the government to get information regarding the general location as well as other details that would identify the specific phone making the call.

Even though only Verizon was identified, it is likely that similar Orders are in place with other carriers.  If this is true, then the government would have logs of almost every telephone call.  By some estimates, the government is collecting up to a billion pieces of data a day.

There is no indication that the government is actually listening to the telephone calls.  According to the Director of National Intelligence, James Clapper, the information that is gathered goes into a database where it can only be accessed when a judge gives approval in a national security investigation.  The information cannot be accessed unless there is a “reasonable and articulable suspicion” that such information is relevant.

At least two civil lawsuits have already been filed against federal officials since the Court Order was published alleging that civil liberties have been violated.

On a side note, sales of George Orwell’s “1984” on Amazon have jumped by almost 10,000%.

Lawyers in History: Some Gave Their Lives, and Some Even Lost Their Heads Over Making Political Changes

It’s not always easy to be an attorney today, but at least we do not expect to be beheaded anytime soon.  The next time you are having a rough day consider what happened to lawyers who fought for political freedom during The French Revolution. In particular we today profile to lawyers who helped change the history of western Europe, and thus the history of the United States, Maximilien de Robespierre and Antoine Quentin Fouquier de Tinville.

Maximilien de Robespierre: Revolutionary Attorney

Maximilien de Robespierre

During the Revolution, where blood flowed through the streets of Paris, one of the most important figures was young attorney Maximilien de Robespierre. Known to his admirers as “The Incorruptible” and to his enemies as “a bloodthirsty dictator,” he was a figure who evoked strong emotions. He obtained a scholarship to study law at the Lycee Louis-le-Grand in Paris. After graduation, he was admitted to the Arras bar, and later appointed as a criminal judge in Arras. Robespierre considered himself a student of the Enlightenment; he often represented the poor and was a successful advocate for them. He was later swept up in the Revolutionary sentiment of the times, and his focus became largely political. He helped draft the Declaration of Rights of Men and was a major force behind the execution of King Louis XVI. Following the fall of the Royalists, he helped to establish an organization known as the Revolutionary Tribunal to administer stability and law. During this period, Robespierre was at the height of his power; however, it did not last long. He helped to usher in the most radical and bloody phase of the Revolution, The Reign of Terror, that lead to the untimely death to many by the guillotine. Ironically, he was later prosecuted and sentenced to death by the same weapon he so often wielded.

Antoine Quentin Fouquier-Tinville: Let them eat Tort[e]s

Antoine Quentin Fouquier-Tinville

You can see the above quoted language eloquently performed by clicking here.

From an early period, Fouquier-Tinville adopted the revolutionary ideas of liberty, equality and fraternity. From obscurity, he managed to obtain a position as public prosecutor in the newly formed Revolutionary Tribunal that prosecuted Royalists from March 1793 – July 1794. During his time as prosecutor, he gained a reputation as one of the most sinister figures of the Revolution, using the veil of the law to cover up gross brutality. As a prosecutor, he was known for his overzealous radicalism and always managed to secure a conviction. He was the prosecutor of several important figures, including Marie Antoinette, Charlotte Corday and The Girondists. However, with the fall of Robespierre and the rise of a new faction, Fouquier-Tinville was later arrested and imprisoned. During his trial, like many other criminal attorneys before and after, he claimed that he was only carrying out the law, and argued “here I am facing slander, [facing] a people always eager to find others responsible.” He was sent to the guillotine, like so many he personally sent, in 1795.

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Applicable Federal Rates

Please click here to view a chart of this month’s, last month’s, and the preceding month’s Applicable Federal Rates, because for a sale you can use the lowest of the 3.

Seminars and Webinars

  • NORTH SUNCOAST CHAPTER OF THE FICPA’S MONTHLY MEETING:

Alan Gassman will be speaking on the topic of FLORIDA LAW FOR TAX, BUSINESS AND ACCOUNTING ADVISORS

Date: Wednesday, June 19, 2013 (60 MINUTE PRESENTATION FOLLOWED BY DINNER AND DRINKS)

Location: Chili’s U.S. 19 in Port Richey

Additional Information: If you would like to attend the meeting or receive a copy of the materials please email agassman@gassmanpa.com

  • SUNCOAST CHAPTER OF THE FICPA MONTHLY MEETING

Alan Gassman will be speaking on the topic of 2 FASCINATING PLANNING SESSIONS: (A) ESTATE AND INCOME TAX PLANNING – 2013; and (B) THE CPA’S GUIDE TO ASSET PROTECTION FOR PROFESSIONALS AND PROFESSIONAL PRACTICES

Date:  Thursday, June 20, 2013 4:00 – 7:00 p.m. (3 HOUR PRESENTATION)

Speakers:       Alan S. Gassman and Christopher J. Denicolo

Location:        Feathersound Country Club, Clearwater, Florida

Additional Information: If you would like to attend this meeting or receive a copy of the materials please email agassman@gassmanpa.com

  • LUNCH TALK – MEDICAL PRIVACY LAWS – HOW TO HANDLE STICKY SITUATIONS (WHAT EVERY LAWYER NEEDS TO KNOW)

 Date:  Monday, July 1, 2013 | 12:30 p.m. (30 MINUTE PRESENATION)

Speaker: The Amazing Lester Perling, J.D., M.H.A.

Location: Online webinar

Sponsor: The Clearwater Bar Association

Additional Information: To register please visit www.clearwaterbar.org or email Janine Ruggiero at Janine@gassmanpa.com

  • FLORIDA HEALTH CARE LAW CHANGES: HOW THEY AFFECT PHYSICIANS AND MEDICAL ENTERPRISES WEBINAR

Date:  Tuesday, July 2, 2013 | 12:30 p.m. – 1:00 p.m. and Wednesday, July 10, 2013 | 5:00 p.m. – 5:30 p.m.

Speakers: Healthcare Expert Lester Perling, J.D., M.H.A. and Alan S. Gassman, J.D., LL.M.

Location: Online webinar.

Additional Information: To register for the July 2nd at 12:30 p.m. webinar please click here.   To register for the July 10th at 5:00 p.m. webinar please click here.

  • BP OIL SPILL CLAIMS – AVOID MISTAKES AND MAXIMIZE CLAIMS

Date: Wednesday, July 17, 2013 | 5:00 p.m. – 5:30 p.m.

Speakers: John Goldsmith, Esq. and Alan S. Gassman

Location: Online webinar

Additional Information:  To register for this webinar please click here.

  • MEDICAL EDUCATION RESOURCES PRIMARY CARE CONFERENCE

Alan Gassman will be speaking on the topic of LEGAL, TAX AND FINANCIAL BOOT CAMP FOR THE MEDICAL PRACTICE – A SPECIAL TAX, ESTATE PLANNING AND LAW CONFERENCE FOR PRIMARY CARE PHYSICIANS

Date: July 19 – 21, 2013 (Friday – Sunday mornings; Have fun at Disney in the afternoons and we will not ask what you do at night!)

Topic:         1)             The 10 Biggest Mistakes That Physicians Make In Their Investments and Business

  Planning

                                                9am – 10am on Friday, July 19, 2013

                         2)             Lawsuits 101

                                                10:10 am – 11:10 am on Friday, July 19, 2013

                         3)             Essential Estate Planning

                                                11:10 am – 11:40 am on Friday, July 19, 2013

                         4)             Asset Entity Planning for Creditor Protection and Buy Sell Arrangements

                                                10:10 am – 11:10 am on Saturday, July 20, 2013

                         5)             50 Ways to Leave Your Overhead – How to Enhance Medical Practice Profitability

                                                11:40 am – 12:40 pm on Saturday, July 20, 2013

                         6)             Stark Naked, or Well Prepared? – Health Law Compliance

                                                9:00 am – 10:00 am on Sunday, July 21, 2013

Location: Disney’s Boardwalk Resort, Orlando, Florida

Topics by Other Speakers: 2013 Tax Changes, Tax Deductions for Physicians, Medical Practice Financial Management, Physician Compensation, Tax Structures for Medical Practices and Retirement Plan Options for Physicians.

Additional Information:  For more information please visit www.MER.org  Please note that the program qualifies for continuing education credit for physicians.

  • WEDU ESTATE PLANNING SEMINAR

Gassman Law Associates meets Big Bird – Sesame Street vs. Wall Street?

Alan Gassman will be speaking on the topic of ASSET PROTECTION – ESSENTIAL KNOWLEDGE AND HOT TOPICS

Leading trust law expert Bruce Stone, Esq. will also speak on a topic to be determined.

Date: Thursday, September 19, 2013 | 7:30 am – 11:30 am

Location: TBD

Additional Information:  If you would like to sign up for this seminar please email agassman@gassmanpa.com

  • NOTRE DAME TAX INSTITUTE

Jerry Hesch and Alan Gassman will be speaking on the topic of INTERESTING INTEREST QUESTIONS, PLANNING WITH LOW INTEREST LOANS, PRIVATE ANNUITIES, DEFECTIVE GRANTOR TRUSTS, AND PRIVATE AND COMMERCIAL ANNUITIES

Date: Wednesday, October 16 through Friday, October 18, 2013

Location: Notre Dame College, South Bend, Indiana

Additional Information: Professor Jerry Hesch’s Notre Dame Tax Institute will once again emphasize the importance of income tax planning and implications in addition to estate, estate tax, and related concepts.

Email us now to get your football tickets to the Notre Dame-USC game on October 19.

We welcome questions, comments and suggestions for the presentation that we are assisting Jerry in preparing and presenting.

  • PINELLAS COUNTY ESTATE PLANNING COUNCIL SEMINAR

Alan Gassman will be speaking on the topic of HOT TOPICS FOR ESTATE PLANNERS

Date: Wednesday, October 23, 2013 | 8:00 am – 12:00 p.m. (60 MINUTE PRESENTATION)

Location: TBD

Additional Information: To attend the meeting or to receive information on joining the Council please click here or email agassman@gassmanpa.com

  • 2013 MOTE VASCULAR SURGERY FELLOWS – FACTS OF LIFE TALK SEMINAR FOR FIRST YEAR SURGEONS

Alan Gassman will be speaking on the topic of ESTATE, MEDICAL PRACTICE, RETIREMENT, TAX, INSURANCE, AND BUY/SELL PLANNING – THE EARLIER YOU START THE SOONER YOU WILL BE SECURE

Date: October 25 – 27, 2013 | Times TBD

Location: TBD

Additional Information: Please contact agassman@gassmanpa.com for additional information.

  • NEW JERSEY INSTITUTE FOR CONTINUING LEGAL EDUCATION (ICLE) HEALTH LAW SYMPOSIUM – AN ALL DAY SEMINAR

Alan Gassman will be speaking on the topic of WHAT HEALTH LAWYERS NEED TO KNOW ABOUT FLORIDA LAW

Date: Friday, November 1, 2013 | 9am – 5pm (Mr. Gassman speaks from 1:10 pm until 2:10 p.m.)

Location: Seton Hall Law School, Newark, New Jersey

Additional Information: Seton Hall University in South Orange, New Jersey was founded in 1856, and they have remodeled since.  Today, Seton Hall has over 10,000 students in its undergraduate, graduate and law school programs and is in close proximity to several Kentucky Fried Chicken locations.

  • NEW JERSEY INSTITUTE FOR CONTINUING LEGAL EDUCATION (ICLE)_SPECIAL 3 HOUR SESSION

Alan Gassman will be speaking on the topic of WHAT NEW JERSEY LAWYERS NEED TO KNOW ABOUT FLORIDA LAW – A 3 HOUR OVERVIEW BY ALAN S. GASSMAN

Date: Saturday, November 2, 2013

Location: Wilshire Grand Hotel, West Orange, New Jersey | 9am – 12pm

Additional Information: Please tell all of your friends, neighbors and enemies in New Jersey to come out to support this important presentation for the New Jersey Bar Association.  We will include discussions of airboats, how to get an alligator off of your driveway, how to peel a navel orange and what collard greens and grits are. For additional information please email agassman@gassmanpa.com

  • SALT LAKE CITY ESTATE PLANNING COUNCIL’S FALL ONE DAY “TAX AND DEDUCTIBILITY OF YOUR SKI TRIP” INSTITUTE

Alan Gassman will be speaking on the topic of PRACTICAL ESTATE PLANNING, WITH A $5.25 MILLION EXEMPTION AMOUNT

Date: Thursday, November 7, 2013

Location: Hilton Downtown Salt Lake City, Utah

Additional Information:  Please support this one day annual seminar conveniently located near skiing and tourism opportunities.  If you would like to attend this event or receive the materials please email agassman@gassmanpa.com

NOTABLE SEMINARS PRESENTED BY OTHERS:

  • 48th ANNUAL HECKERLING INSTITUTE ON ESTATE PLANNING SEMINAR

Date: January 13 – 17, 2014

Location:  Orlando World Center Marriott, Orlando, Florida

Sponsor: University of Miami School of Law

Additional Information: For more information please visit: http://www.law.miami.edu/heckerling/

  • 16th ANNUAL ALL CHILDREN’S HOSPITAL ESTATE, TAX, LEGAL & FINANCIAL PLANNING SEMINAR

Date: Wednesday, February 12, 2014

Location: All Children’s Hospital Education and Conference Center, St. Petersburg, Florida with remote location live interactive viewings in Tampa, Sarasota, New Port Richey, Lakeland, and Bangkok, Thailand

Sponsor: All Children’s Hospital

  • THE UNIVERSITY OF FLORIDA TAX INSTITUTE

Date: February 19 – 21, 2014

Location: Grand Hyatt, Tampa, Florida

Sponsor:  UF Law alumni and UF Graduate Tax Program

Additional Information:  Here is what UF is saying about the program on its website: “The UF Tax Institute will provide tax practitioners and other leading tax, business and estate planning professionals with a program that covers the most current issues and planning ideas with a practical, informative, state-of-the-art approach.  The Institute’s schedule will devote separate days or half days to individual income tax issues, entity tax issues and estate planning issues.  Speakers and presentations will be announced as the program date nears to ensure coverage of the most timely and significant topics.  UF Law alumni have formed the Florida Tax Education Foundation, Inc., a nonprofit corporation, to organize the conference.”

For details about each event, please visit us online at gassmanlawassociates.com/newsandevents.html

Alan S. Gassman, J.D., LL.M. is a practicing lawyer and author based in Clearwater, Florida. Mr. Gassman is the founder of the firm Gassman Law Associates, P.A., which focuses on the representation of physicians, high net worth individuals, and business owners in estate planning, taxation, and business and personal matters.  He is the lead author on Bloomberg BNA’s Estate Tax Planning and 2011 and 2012, Creditor Protection for Florida Physicians, Gassman & Markham on Florida and Federal Asset Protection Law, A Practical Guide to Kickback and Self-Referral Laws for Florida Physicians, The Florida Physician Advertising Handbook  and The Florida Guide to Prescription, Controlled Substance and Pain Medicine Laws, among others.  Mr. Gassman is a frequent speaker for continuing education programs, publishes regularly for Bloomberg BNA Tax & Accounting, Estates and Trusts Magazine, Estate Planning Magazine and Leimberg Estate Planning Network (LISI).  He holds a law degree and a Masters of Law degree (LL.M.) in Taxation from the University of Florida, and a business degree from Rollins College.  Mr. Gassman is board certified by the Florida Bar Association in Estate Planning and Trust Law, and has the Accredited Estate Planner designation for the National Association of Estate Planners & Councils.  Mr. Gassman’s email is Agassman@gassmanpa.com.

Thomas J. Ellwanger, J.D., is a lawyer practicing at the Clearwater, Florida firm of Gassman Law Associates, P.A.  Mr. Ellwanger received his B.A. in 1970 from Northwestern University and his J.D. with honors in 1974 from the University of Florida College of Law.  His practice areas include estate planning, trust and estate administration, personal tax planning and charitable tax planning.  Mr. Ellwanger is a member of the American College of Trusts and Estates Counsel (ACTEC). His email address is tom@gassmanpa.com.

Christopher Denicolo, J.D., LL.M. is a partner at the Clearwater, Florida law firm of Gassman Law Associates, P.A., where he practices in the areas of estate tax and trust planning, taxation, physician representation, and corporate and business law.  He has co-authored several handbooks that have been featured in Bloomberg BNA Tax & Accounting, Steve Leimberg’s Estate Planning and Asset Protection Planning Newsletters, and the Florida Bar Journal. He is also the author of the Federal Income Taxation of the Business Entity Chapter of the Florida Bar’s Florida Small Business Practice, Seventh Edition. Mr. Denicolo received his B.A. and B.S. degrees from Florida State University, his J.D. from Stetson University College of Law, and his LL.M. (Estate Planning) from the University of Miami.  His email address is Christopher@gassmanpa.com.

Kenneth J. Crotty, J.D., LL.M., is a partner at the Clearwater, Florida law firm of Gassman Law Associates, P.A., where he practices in the areas of estate tax and trust planning, taxation, physician representation, and corporate and business law. Mr. Crotty has co-authored several handbooks that have been published in BNA Tax & Accounting, Estate Planning, Steve Leimberg’s Estate Planning and Asset Protection Planning Newsletters, Estate Planning magazine, and Practical Tax Strategies.  Mr. Crotty is also the author of the Limited Liability Company Chapter of the Florida Bar’s Florida Small Business Practice, Seventh Edition. He, Alan Gassman and Christopher Denicolo are the co-authors of the BNA book Estate Tax Planning in 2011 & 2012.  Mr. Crotty is board certified by the Florida Bar Association in Tax Law. His email address is Ken@gassmanpa.com.

Thank you to our law clerks that assisted us in preparing this report.

The Thursday Report – June 6, 2013 – Beneficiary Designations, Marx Brothers on Contracts, Putting Real Estate into S Corporations, Our BNA Series on Florida Law, and Lawyers in History

Posted on: June 6th, 2013

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Spanning the globe, or at least parts of Florida and one guy opens it in New Jersey most of the time!!!

HOT FROM LISI – OUR LATEST PUBLISHED ARTICLE: JUNE 3, 2013 US SUPREME COURT CASE – STATE LAW OF BENEFICIARY DESIGNATIONS PREEMPTED BY FEDERAL STATUTE TO DISTORT AN ESTATE PLAN

“You can’t fool me, there ain’t no sanity clause!”: THE MARX BROTHERS ON CONTRACTS!

WHY NOT TO PUT MORE REAL ESTATE INTO DARNED S CORPORATIONS – A COMMON SENSE EXPLANATION FOR CLIENTS WITH SAMPLE LETTER

FREE COPY OF PART ONE OF OUR THREE-PART SERIES ON FLORIDA LAW FOR ESTATE, TAX, AND CORPORATE PROFESSIONALS

LAWYERS IN HISTORY: THE IMPACT OF LAW PRACTICE ON THEIR LIVES AND CAREERS: JOHN ADAMS AND JOHN QUINCY ADAMS

We welcome contributions for future Thursday Report topics. If you are interested in making a contribution as a guest writer, please email Janine Ruggiero at Janine@gassmanpa.com.

This report and other Thursday Reports can be found on our website at www.gassmanlawassociates.com.

DID YOU KNOW ABOUT THE UF TAX INSTITUTE?

 Many people are still not aware that the University of Florida’s tax program will be sponsoring a 3-day tax institute in Tampa, Florida.

  • UF TAX INSTITUTE

Date: February 19 – 21, 2014 (Wednesday – Friday)

Location: Grand Hyatt, Tampa, Florida

Sponsor:  UF Law alumni and UF Graduate Tax Program

Additional Information:  Here is what UF is saying about the program on its website: “The UF Tax Institute will provide tax practitioners and other leading tax, business and estate planning professionals with a program that covers the most current issues and planning ideas with a practical, informative, state-of-the-art approach.  The Institute’s schedule will devote separate days or half days to individual income tax issues, entity tax issues and estate planning issues.  Speakers and presentations will be announced as the program date nears to ensure coverage of the most timely and significant topics.  UF Law alumni have formed the Florida Tax Education Foundation, Inc., a nonprofit corporation, to organize the conference.

 We see on Sunbiz that Florida Tax Education Foundation, Inc. was formed on May 2, 2012 and lists Lauren Detzel of Orlando and David Pratt and Donald Tescher both of Boca Raton, Florida as directors.  Hats off to Lauren, David, Donald and whoever else is spearheading this new wonderful development for Florida tax law and the UF tax program.

HOT FROM LISI – OUR LATEST PUBLISHED ARTICLE: JUNE 3, 2013 US SUPREME COURT CASE – STATE LAW OF BENEFICIARY DESIGNATIONS PREEMPTED BY FEDERAL STATUTE TO DISTORT AN ESTATE PLAN

Where Did Our Cash Go?—U.S. Supremes find that Federal statutes trump state law that would otherwise remove a divorced spouse from being a beneficiary under a federal life insurance policy.  The importance of ensuring that beneficiary designations are current.  The 9-0 Decision of Hillman v. Maretta

By Alan S. Gassman and Christopher J. Denicolo

 “…a FEGLI policy in fact highlights Congress’ intent to allow an employee wide latitude to determine how the proceeds should be paid, whether that is to a named beneficiary that he selects, or indirectly through the assignment of the policy itself to someone else.”

 “”Baby baby, where did our {cash} go””

 Executive Summary

      The Federal Employees’ Group Life Insurance Act (“FEGLIA”) establishes a life insurance program whereby the insured employee designates a beneficiary to receive the proceeds of their Federal Employees’ Group Life Insurance (“FEGLI”) on death. This federal law conflicts with Virginia’s conventional statute, which provides that a divorced spouse will be considered as removed as a designated beneficiary, leaving the new spouse wondering  “Baby, baby, where did our love go?” as the money from the policy took a midnight train to Georgia to the ex-wife whether she was deserving of the monies or not.

 Facts

     Justice Sotomayor delivered this unanimous opinion of the Court, which affirmed the Virginia Supreme Court decision on this subject. Mr. Warren Hillman and respondent Ms. Judy Maretta were married and in 1996. Mr. Hillman named Ms. Maretta as the beneficiary of his FEGLI policy. They later divorced and Mr. Hillman married petitioner Ms. Jacqueline Hillman. Upon Mr. Hillman’s sudden death in 2008 Ms. Maretta was still named as the beneficiary for his FEGLI policy, though the two were divorced and Mr. Hillman had already remarried. As such, Ms. Maretta received benefits from his FEGLI plan amounting to $124,558.03. Ms. Hillman brought an action to claim the benefits from the insurance plan under a Virginia statute, Va. Code Ann. § 20-111.1(A), which states that divorced spouses cease to be the designated beneficiaries of each other’s life insurance policies, Instead the statute appropriately directs that decedent’s widow or widower at the time of death, or if none, descendants, become entitled to the benefits.  Thus, this is a question of preemption between the state statute and the antiquated FEGLIA statute, which provides that the benefits follow in the order of precedence, with the designated beneficiary as the first person in line to receive the proceeds of the policy upon the employee’s death.

 Comment

      The Supreme Court held no choice but to find that the Virginia state law statute was preempted by a federal statute providing for an order of precedence of beneficiaries under FEGLI policies.  The ex-spouse therefore remained as the beneficiary of the decedent’s life insurance policy, notwithstanding that they had divorced since she was named as the beneficiary of the policy, and that Virginia state law provided otherwise.

      Pursuant to a federal statute under the FEGLIA statute governing FEGLI policies, an “order of precedence” is established so that policy proceeds accrue on the death of the employee “[f]irst, to the beneficiary or beneficiaries designated by the employee in a signed and witnessed writing received before death…if there is no designated beneficiary, the benefits are paid to the widow or widower of the employee….[a]bsent a widow or widower, the benefits accrue to the child or children of the employee and descendants of [the] deceased children, the parents of the employee or their survivors; the executor or administrator of the estate of the employee, and last, to other next of kin.” 5 U.S.C. §8705(a).

      Further, a federal statute under FEGLIA includes an express preemption provision, which provides that “[t]he provisions of any contract under [FEGLIA] which relate to the nature or extent of coverage or benefits (including payments with respect to benefits) shall supercede and, pre-empt any law of any State . . . , which relates to group life insurance to the extent that the law or regulation is inconsistent with the contractual provisions.” 5 U.S.C. §8709(d)(1).

      Section 20.111.1(A) of the Virginia Code provides that divorce or annulment “revoke[s] a beneficiary designation contained in a then existing written contract owned by one party that provides for the payment of any death benefit to the other party.”  For the purposes of this statute, a “death benefit” includes payments under a life insurance contract.  Further, Section 20.111.1(D) of the Virginia Code provides that if the above referenced Subsection (A) is preempted by federal law with respect to the payment of any death benefit, then a cause of action is created rendering the ex-spouse liable for the principal amount of the life insurance proceeds to the person who would have received them if Subsection (A) had not be preempted.

      The Court’s opinion stated that the Virginia statutes “interferes with Congress’ scheme,” which provides for a “clear and predictable procedure for an employee to indicate who the intended beneficiary of his life insurance will be.”  Accordingly, the insurance proceeds that the ex-spouse is owed under FEGLIA cannot be allocated to another person by operation of state law.

      The decedent’s ex-spouse may or may not have followed the pronouncement of the decision by the Supreme Court with another Supremes classic, “Where Did Our Love Go?”, although with more appropriate lyrics, while possibly contemplating whether there is a cause of action against any professionals who did not advise the divorcing husband to change his beneficiary designation on his FEGLIA policy.

 

Baby, baby

Baby don’t leave me

Ooh, without your FEGLI (policy)

All to myself

 

I’ve got this burning, burning

Yearning feelin’ inside me

Ooh, you can’t decline me

And it hurts so bad (for your widow)

 

You came into my heart

So tenderly

With a federal plan

The beneficiary is she

 

Now I must surrender

That FEGLI (policy)

That you must leave

Ooh, that you must leave to she

Ooh, baby, baby

Where did that cash  go?

Ooh, you didn’t want she

Should have changed it, of course

 

Ooh, baby

Baby, baby

Where did that cash  go

And all your promises

Are out the window

 

I’ve got this burning, burning

Yearning feelin’ inside me

Ooh, you just declined me

And it hurts so bad (for your widow)

 

Once you  got divorced

You should have changed it right

But you  forgot to

So I’m really uptight.

You can’t leave me behind

Baby, baby, ooh baby

 

Baby, baby don’t leave me

 

Ooh, without your FEGLI (policy)

All by myself

Ooh, baby, baby

Where did our lawyer go?

 

Conclusion

      While it is likely that the holding of this case applies only to those assets and contracts that are established under federal law, some commentators have expressed concern that a court will extend the holding in this case to apply to any retirement plan or other asset or contract that is governed under ERISA or to which an order of precedence of beneficiaries established under federal law applies.

     It remains to be seen whether other states’ statutes providing that divorce or annulment of a marriage removes an ex-spouse from beneficiary designations of the other spouse will be challenged based upon preemption of the federal law. In any event, advisors and clients can avoid this by changing their beneficiary designations as their lives change.

       The moral of the story is that advisors should help assure that clients change their beneficiary designations as circumstances in their lives change to confirm that their intentions and wishes will be reflected after their deaths.  It is imprudent to rely upon the operation of state law to remove a client’s ex-spouse as a beneficiary of his or her life insurance, retirement plans or annuity contracts, and proper practice dictates that we regularly encourage our clients to assure that their beneficiary designations are current and to update them if necessary. A blanket change of beneficiary form purporting to change all existing beneficiary designations existing at the time of a divorce may also be employed as a belt and suspenders method of trying to assure that even specific designations that slip through the cracks would be handled, if the policy or plan allows.

      Not many clients want their ex-spouses asking “Where Did Our Love Go?” only to find that it still remains in the form of life insurance policy benefits, albeit unintentionally.  If accidental death rates increase as a result of this decision then it may be more important than ever that the Federal law be brought up to the present century in this regard.

 “You can’t fool me, there ain’t no sanity clause!”: THE

MARX BROTHERS ON CONTRACTS!

     We had such a great response to our May 16 Thursday Report featuring Groucho Marx’s letter to Warner Brothers (click here for a copy) that we thought we should bring you another classic Marx Brothers moment on contracts.

     Of all the hilarious Marx Brothers movie moments, our favorite may be the contract negotiation scene between Grouch and Chico in the 1935 classic, A Night at the Opera. If only all contract negotiations were this easy . . . and funny. Below is a transcript from the scene. Click here to watch the clip on YouTube.  It may be the best three minutes you spend today—besides reading the rest of the Thursday Report!

Groucho Marx: Now pay particular attention to this first clause, because it’s most important. There’s the party of the first part shall be known in this contract as the party of the first part. How do you like that, that’s pretty neat eh.

Chico Marx: No, that’s no good.

Groucho Marx: What’s the matter with it?

Chico Marx: I don’t know, let’s hear it again.

Groucho Marx: So the party of the first part shall be known in this contract as the party of the first part.

Chico Marx: Well it sounds a little better this time.

Groucho Marx: Well, it grows on you. Would you like to hear it once more?

Chico Marx: Just the first part.

Groucho Marx: What do you mean, the party of the first part?

Chico Marx: No, the first part of the party, of the first part.

Groucho Marx: All right. It says the first part of the party of the first part shall be known in this contract as the first part of the party of the first part, shall be known in this contract – look, why should we quarrel about a thing like this, we’ll take it right out, eh?

Chico Marx: Yes, it’s too long anyhow. Now what have we got left?

Groucho Marx: Well I’ve got about a foot and a half. Now what’s the matter?

Chico Marx: I don’t like the second party either.

Groucho Marx: Well, you should have come to the first party, we didn’t get home till around four in the morning. I was blind for three days.

Chico Marx: Hey look, why can’t the first part of the second party be the second part of the first party, then you’ll get something.

Groucho Marx: Well look, rather than go through all that again, what do you say?

Chico Marx: Fine.

Groucho Marx: Now I’ve got something here you’re bound to like, you’ll be crazy about it.

Chico Marx: No, I don’t like it.

Groucho Marx: You don’t like what?

Chico Marx: Whatever it is, I don’t like it.

Groucho Marx: Well don’t let’s break up an old friendship over a thing like that. Ready?

Chico Marx: OK. Now the next part I don’t think you’re going to like.

Groucho Marx: Well your word’s good enough for me. Now then, is my word good enough for you?

Chico Marx: I should say not.

Groucho Marx: Well I’ll take out two more clauses. Now the party of the eighth part –

Chico Marx: No, that’s no good, no.

Groucho Marx: The party of the ninth part –

Chico Marx: No, that’s no good too. Hey, how is it my contract is skinnier than yours?

Groucho Marx: Well, I don’t know, you must have been out on a tail last night. But anyhow, we’re all set now, are we? Now just you put your name right down there, then the deal is legal.

Chico Marx: I forgot to tell you, I can’t write.

Groucho Marx: Well that’s all right, there’s no ink in the pen anyhow. But listen, it’s a contract isn’t it? We’ve got a contract, no matter how small it is.

Chico Marx: Oh sure. You bet. Hey wait, wait. What does this say here, this thing here?

Groucho Marx: Oh that? Oh that’s the usual clause, that’s in every contract. That just says, it says, ‘If any of the parties participating in this contract are shown not to be in their right mind, the entire agreement is automatically nullified.’

Chico Marx: Well, I don’t know.

Groucho Marx: It’s all right, that’s in every contract. That’s what they call a sanity clause.

Chico Marx: You can’t fool me, there ain’t no sanity clause.

     To view the scene with Groucho and Chico on contracts please click here.

WHY NOT TO PUT MORE REAL ESTATE INTO DARNED S CORPORATIONS – A COMMON SENSE EXPLANATION

     Oftentimes clients desire to place all of their real estate into an S corporation because they may, for whatever reason, believe it to be the best option for holding all of their property or a business’ property. For instance, the client may be from an era before the rise of the LLC and or simply have received bad advice in the past. To that end, we have drafted a sample letter that you can share with your clients who are stuck in the old way of thinking, so that your clients can fully utilize the benefits of an LLC.

      Dear Client:

             Many clients and their businesses hold real estate in separate LLCs as opposed to having all of the properties under one company.  This helps to segregate the various properties from potential liability, although liability is admittedly rare, and also allows future co-owners to buy into one but not all of the properties.

             However, I would not buy any future properties under an S corporation.

            S corporations have certain limitations for tax purposes that do not apply to limited liability companies that are taxed as partnerships.

            I would have your future real estate acquisition under a limited liability company taxed as a partnership.

            Four examples of the advantages of a limited liability company taxed as a partnership over an S corporation with respect to real estate ownership are as follows:

1.     When a new partner buys into an S corporation their depreciation writeoff and underlying basis for if and when the real estate is ever sold has to be based upon the historic basis and depreciation taken, versus being based upon the price they pay.

For example, if the S corporation originally purchased a property for $100,000 and took $50,000 of depreciation, then someone now paying $50,000 for a 25% interest will only get depreciation based upon 25% of what is left of the remaining $50,000 basis, and upon the sale of the property that person will pay 25% of the gain on the difference between 25% of the sale price and 25% of $50,000.

If that same person had bought 25% of an LLC taxed as a partnership that owns the property then they could have a depreciation basis based upon the $50,000, and their gain on the sale of the property could be based upon the $50,000 less the depreciation allocated to them.  This can be much better for everyone (except for the IRS).

2.     On death the tax basis inside an S corporation does not change, but with an LLC it can come up to the fair market value multiplied by the percentage of the LLC owned.  This can make a big difference in tax treatment and advantages for surviving family members.

3.     S corporations can only be owned by individuals and certain trusts.  They cannot be owned by non-resident aliens, corporations, or family limited partnerships.  This limits flexibility going forward.

For these reasons I would have your corporate counsel establish a new LLC to be used in lieu of the present S corporation.

In the future you might have one or more partners who would only buy in to the building that they are involved with.

4.     When you pull real estate out of an LLC taxed as a partnership there is typically no capital gains tax paid.  If you pull that real estate out of an S corporation you have to pay taxes if the property was sold at the fair market value at the time of the withdrawal.  Partnership tax can be very complicated, so you still have to be very careful with an LLC taxed as a partnership, but the great majority of the time it will be substantially better than having real estate in an S corporation.

5.     S corporations cannot have a “second class of stock.”  This means that there can be no priority rights other than voting and non-voting differences.  Oftentimes investors would like to have a preferred type of interest, and this flexibility is simply not available with an S corporation.

            There are more reasons, but hopefully this is enough.

FREE COPY OF PART ONE OF OUR THREE-PART SERIES ON FLORIDA LAW FOR ESTATE, TAX, AND CORPORATE PROFESSIONALS

     Part 1 of our 3-Part BNA series on Florida Law for Estate, Tax and Corporate Professionals was released in the January 2013 issue of Bloomberg BNA’s Tax Management Estate, Gifts and Trusts Journal.  We made Part 2 of this series an attachment to our May 23 Thursday Report and realized that we had not made Part 1 available.

      You can access Part 1 by clicking here, and Part 2 by clicking here.

      We thank our friends at Bloomberg BNA for their encouragement and support for these articles and the Webinar that we gave with Gary Teblum of the Trenam Kemker firm last week for Bloomberg BNA, which covered the new LLC law changes that are expected to be enacted this month and highlights from our 3-Part Bloomberg BNA series.  You can purchase the CD or download of the Bloomberg BNA Webinar by clicking here, and can receive a $100 discount for using the top secret access code “GASSMAN” that you can share with any other Thursday Report reader.  If you are embarrassed to ask others whether they are Thursday Report readers, you can use the secret handshake without admitting that you are “one of us.”

      This is the same secret handshake that was made famous in the movie Animal House starring John Belushi and Tim Matheson, which made its debut in 1978.

      Speaking of secret handshakes, did you know that the Freemasons, a fraternal organization, has used secret handshakes for hundreds of years as a way to gain admission to meetings and to identify legitimate visitors.   Some of our nation’s founding fathers were Freemasons including George Washington, Andrew Jackson, Theodore Roosevelt and Harry Truman.  But most importantly Colonel Sanders was a Freemason!

     It’s interesting to note, however, that our two lawyers in history this week, John Adams and John Quincy Adams, both former presidents of the United States, were strong opponents to Freemasonry, and John Quincy Adams even helped found the Anti-Masonic Political Party.

      The Anti-Masonic Party was founded on the belief that the Freemasons were against the republican views of the United States at the time.  The party gained popularity in 1827 when many citizens in New York and elsewhere began to seek no Mason for public office.  Support for this effort was strong and opposition to Masons in public office reached an all time high with opposition to Andrew Jackson, who went on to become our seventh president despite the parties best efforts.

      It was believed that due to the fact that most of the members of Freemasonry were judges, politicians, businessmen and bankers that our legal system and country was being corrupted and that the people serving in positions of power were using their influence to promote the ideals of the Freemasons and not true democracy.

      The Anti-Masonic Party holds the distinction as the first “third party” in the United States.  The Anti-Masonic party plays an important role in our nations political history.  Nominating conventions and party platforms were introduced during it’s 10 year run and are still in place today.

     Please join us for next week’s Thursday Report where we will discuss more on Freemasonry and famous American Freemasons.

 “I won’t belong to any organization that would have me as a member.”

-        Groucho Marx

 LAWYERS IN HISTORY: THE IMPACT OF LAW PRACTICE ON THEIR LIVES AND CAREERS: JOHN ADAMS AND JOHN QUINCY ADAMS

            As part of our ongoing search for ways to entertain and educate, the Thursday Report is proud to introduce our new semi-regular feature: Lawyers in History: The Impact of Law Practice on Their Lives and Careers, which will share some of our favorite stories about the law and lawyers. 

John Adams and John Quincy Adams

“Let us dare to read, think, speak and write.”

 John Adams

John Adams All

If your actions inspire others to dream more, learn more, do more and become more, you are a leader.”

 John Quincy Adams

John Quincy Adams All

      Both the second president John Adams and his son, the sixth president John Quincy Adams, had impressive careers in the law and made great impacts on American legal history.

     John Adams, our second President, originally planned to attend Harvard College to become a minister. However, he ultimately found his passion in the law, stating that among lawyers, unlike the clergy, “noble and gallant achievements” could be found. Perhaps Adams’ most notable case was defending the British soldiers during one of the events that precipitated the American Revolution, the Boston Massacre. Adams, in a politically risky move, agreed to represent the British soldiers that were having a hard time finding representation in Boston. Of the eight soldiers, six were acquitted, and only the two that fired directly into the crowd were convicted of manslaughter, a huge victory for Adams. In defense of the soldiers, Adams declared that “it is more important that innocence be protected than it is that guilt be punished, for guilt and crimes are so frequent in this world that they cannot all be punished.”

     One of Adams’s most significant legacies to the fledging American legal system was the appointment of John Marshall as the Chief Justice to the United States Supreme Court. Marshall ushered in a new era of the judicial branch taking its role as a fully empowered third branch of the United States government through landmark decisions such as Marbury v. Madison and Gibbons v. Ogden. Many of Marshall’s decision forever changed the fabric of the Constitution and the power balance of the federal government (and will be eternally imbedded in the minds of first year Constitutional law students.)

     John Adams’s son, John Quincy Adams (“JQA”), was a famous attorney in his own right. Unlike other former presidents, Adams did not retire after leaving office. Adams later ran for and was elected to a seat in the United States House of Representative, becoming the first president (and one of only two presidents) to serve in the United States Congress after a presidency. In total, Adams was elected eight more times as a Representative, serving until his death.

     While a Representative, Adams focused on abolitionist causes. In 1841 he was involved in the “Amistad” affair, which centered upon a slave revolt on board a Spanish slave ship called the Amistad.  JQA took the slaves’ case, and after four hours of impassioned arguments, he prevailed and ultimately ended the Amistad affair, freeing the slaves on board the ship. The Amistad affair was later memorialized in Howard Jones’ book, Mutiny on the Amistad: The Saga of a Slave Revolt and Its Impact on American Abolition, Law, and Diplomacy and the 1997 Steven Spielberg movie, Amistad. Anthony Hopkins portrayed Adams in the movie and was nominated for an Academy Award for Best Supporting Actor for his role.

APPLICABLE FEDERAL RATES

Please click here to view a chart of this month’s, last month’s, and the preceding month’s Applicable Federal Rates, because for a sale you can use the lowest of the 3.

SEMINARS AND WEBINARS

SEMINARS:

  • THE JOINT EXEMPT STEP-UP TRUST (JEST)

Date: Tuesday, June 11, 2013 | 12pm Eastern/9am Pacific (90 MINUTE PRESENTATION)

Sponsor: The Ultimate Estate Planner, Inc.

Additional Information:  If you would like to attend this teleconference please click here to register.

  • FLORIDA LAW FOR TAX, BUSINESS AND ACCOUNTING ADVISORS

Date: Wednesday, June 19, 2013 (60 MINUTE PRESENTATION FOLLOWED BY DINNER AND DRINKS)

Location: Chili’s U.S. 19 in Port Richey

Sponsor: North Suncoast Chapter of FICPA

Additional Information: If you would like to attend the meeting or receive a copy of the materials please email agassman@gassmanpa.com

  • 2 FASCINATING PLANNING SESSIONS: (A) ESTATE AND INCOME TAX PLANNING – 2013; and (B) THE CPA’S GUIDE TO CREDITOR PROTECTION FOR PROFESSIONALS AND PROFESSIONAL PRACTICES

Date:  Thursday, June 20, 2013 4:00 – 7:00 p.m. (3 HOUR PRESENTAION)

 Speakers:       Alan S. Gassman, Kenneth J. Crotty, Christopher J. Denicolo and Thomas J. Ellwanger

             Location:        Feathersound, Clearwater, Florida – Exact location TBD

             Sponsor:         Suncoast Chapter of the FICPA

 Additional Information: If you would like to attend this meeting or receive a copy of the materials please email agassman@gassmanpa.com

  • LUNCH TALK – MEDICAL PRIVACY LAWS – HOW TO HANDLE STICKY SITUATIONS (WHAT EVERY LAWYER NEEDS TO KNOW)

 Date:  July 1, 2013 | 12:30 p.m. (30 MINUTE PRESENTATION)

Speaker: Lester Perling, J.D., M.H.A.

Location: Online webinar

Sponsor: The Clearwater Bar Association

Additional Information: To register please visit www.clearwaterbar.org or email Janine Ruggiero at Janine@gassmanpa.com

  • FLORIDA HEALTH CARE LAW CHANGES: HOW THEY AFFECT PHYSICIANS AND MEDICAL ENTERPRISES WEBINAR

Date:  July 2, 2013 | 12:30 p.m. – 1:00 p.m. and July 10, 2013 | 5:00 p.m. – 5:30 p.m.

Speakers: Lester Perling, J.D., M.H.A. and Alan S. Gassman, J.D., LL.M.

Location: Online webinar.

Additional Information: To register for the July 2nd at 12:30 p.m. webinar please click here.  To register for the July 10th at 5:00 p.m. webinar please click here.

  • BP OIL SPILL CLAIMS – AVOID MISTAKES AND MAXIMIZE CLAIMS

Date: Wednesday, July 17, 2013 | 5:00 p.m. – 5:30 p.m.

Speakers: John Goldsmith, Esq. and Alan S. Gassman

Location: Online webinar

Additional Information:  To register for this webinar please click here.

  • LEGAL, TAX AND FINANCIAL BOOT CAMP FOR THE MEDICAL PRACTICE or Mickey Mouse Meets Colonel Sanders – Will Kentucky Fried Chicken Be a New World at EPCOT? A Special Tax, Estate Planning and Law Conference for Primary Care Doctors Sponsored By Medical Education Resources

Date: July 19 – 21, 2013 (Friday – Sunday mornings; Have fun at Disney in the afternoons and we will not ask what you do at night!)

Topic:         1)             The 10 Biggest Mistakes That Physicians Make In Their Investments and Business Planning

                                                9am – 10am on Friday, July 19, 2013

                    2)             Lawsuits 101

                                                10:10 am – 11:10 am on Friday, July 19, 2013

                    3)             Essential Estate Planning

                                                11:10 am – 11:40 am on Friday, July 19, 2013

                    4)             Asset Entity Planning for Creditor Protection and Buy Sell Arrangements

                                                10:10 am – 11:10 am on Saturday, July 20, 2013

                    5)             50 Ways to Leave Your Overhead

                                                11:40 am – 12:40 pm on Saturday, July 20, 2013

                    6)             Stark Naked, or Well Prepared? – Health Law Compliance

                                                9:00 am – 10:00 am on Sunday, July 21, 2013

Location: Disney’s Boardwalk Resort, Orlando, Florida

Sponsor:  Medical Education Resources

Topics by Other Speakers: 2013 Tax Changes, Tax Deductions for Physicians, Medical Practice Financial Management, Physician Compensation, Tax Structures for Medical Practices and Retirement Plan Options for Physicians.

Additional Information:  For more information please visit www.MER.org  Please note that the program qualifies for continuing education credit for physicians.

  • INTERESTING INTEREST QUESTIONS, PLANNING WITH LOW INTEREST LOANS, PRIVATE ANNUITIES, DEFECTIVE GRANTOR TRUSTS, AND PRIVATE AND COMMERCIAL ANNUITIES

  Date: Wednesday, October 16 through Friday, October 18, 2013

  Location: Notre Dame College, South Bend, Indiana

  Sponsor: Notre Dame Tax Institute

 Additional Information: Professor Jerry Hesch’s Notre Dame Tax Institute will once again emphasize the importance of income tax planning and implications in addition to estate, estate tax, and related concepts.

 Email us now to get your football tickets to the Notre Dame-USC game on October 19.

 We welcome questions, comments and suggestions for the presentation that we are assisting Jerry in preparing and presenting.

  • HOT TOPICS FOR ESTATE PLANNERS

 Date: Wednesday, October 23, 2013 | 8:00 am – 12:00 p.m. (60 MINUTE PRESENTATION)

 Location: TBD

 Sponsor: Pinellas County Estate Planning Council

 Additional Information: To attend the meeting or to receive information on joining the Council please click here or email agassman@gassmanpa.com

  • 2013 MOTE VASCULAR SURGERY FELLOWS – FACTS OF LIFE TALK SEMINAR

Topic: Retirement Planning and Asset Management; It’s Not Too Early and Insurance Issues: Health, Disability, Death and Key Man Policies by Alan Gassman

Date: October 25 – 27, 2013 | Times TBD

Location: TBD

Sponsor: The Mote Vascular Foundation, Inc., Sarasota, Florida

Additional Information: Please contact agassman@gassmanpa.com for additional information.

  • WHAT HEALTH LAWYERS NEED TO KNOW ABOUT FLORIDA LAW

 Date: Friday, November 1, 2013 | 9am – 5pm (Mr. Gassman speaks from 1:10 pm until 2:10 p.m.)

 Location: Seton Hall Law School, Newark, New Jersey

 Sponsor: Health Law Section of the New Jersey Bar Association

 Additional Information: If you have never been to Seton Hall it is a great place to visit, located in South Orange, New Jersey.  It is a very interesting University founded in 1856.  Today, Seton Hall has over 10,000 students in its undergraduate, graduate and law school programs and is in close proximity to several Kentucky Fried Chicken locations.  To receive a copy of the materials please email agassman@gassmanpa.com

  • WHAT NEW JERSEY LAWYERS NEED TO KNOW ABOUT FLORIDA LAW – A 3 HOUR PRESENATION BY ALAN S. GASSMAN (Bruce Springsteen and Governor Christie were both too busy to appear!)

Date: Saturday, November 2, 2013

Location: Wilshire Grand Hotel, West Orange, New Jersey | 9am – 12pm

Sponsor: New Jersey Institute for Continuing Legal Education, A Division of the New Jersey State Bar Association

Additional Information: Please tell all of your friends, neighbors and enemies in New Jersey to come out to support this important presentation for the New Jersey Bar Association.  We will include discussions of airboats, how to get an alligator off of your driveway, how to peel a navel orange and what chitlins and grits are. For additional information please email agassman@gassmanpa.com

  • PRACTICAL ESTATE PLANNING, WITH A $5.25 MILLION EXEMPTION AMOUNT

 Date: Thursday, November 7, 2013

 Location: Hilton Downtown Salt Lake City, Utah

 Sponsor: Salt Lake Estate Planning Council

 Additional Information:  Please support this one day annual seminar conveniently located near skiing and tourism opportunities.  If you would like to attend this event or receive the materials please email agassman@gassmanpa.com

 SEMINARS PRESENTED BY OTHERS:

  •  48th ANNUAL HECKERLING INSTITUTE ON ESTATE PLANNING SEMINAR

Date: January 13 – 17, 2014

 Location:  Orlando World Center Marriott, Orlando, Florida

 Sponsor: University of Miami School of Law

 Additional Information: For more information please visit: http://www.law.miami.edu/heckerling/

  • 16th ANNUAL ALL CHILDREN’S HOSPITAL ESTATE, TAX, LEGAL & FINANCIAL PLANNING SEMINAR

Date: Wednesday, February 12, 2014

 Location: All Children’s Hospital Education and Conference Center, St. Petersburg, Florida

 Sponsor: All Children’s Hospital

 DID YOU KNOW ABOUT THE UF TAX INSTITUTE?

      Many people are still not aware that the University of Florida’s tax program will be sponsoring a 3-day tax institute in Tampa, Florida.

  • UF TAX INSTITUTE

 Date: February 19 – 21, 2014

 Location: Grand Hyatt, Tampa, Florida

 Sponsor:  UF Law alumni and UF Graduate Tax Program

Additional Information:  Here is what UF is saying about the program on its website: “The UF Tax Institute will provide tax practitioners and other leading tax, business and estate planning professionals with a program that covers the most current issues and planning ideas with a practical, informative, state-of-the-art approach.  The Institute’s schedule will devote separate days or half days to individual income tax issues, entity tax issues and estate planning issues.  Speakers and presentations will be announced as the program date nears to ensure coverage of the most timely and significant topics.  UF Law alumni have formed the Florida Tax Education Foundation, Inc., a nonprofit corporation, to organize the conference.

      We see on Sunbiz that Florida Tax Education Foundation, Inc. was formed on May 2, 2012 and lists Lauren Detzel of Orlando and David Pratt and Donald Tescher both of Boca Raton, Florida as directors.  Hats off to Lauren, David, Donald and whoever else is spearheading this new wonderful development for Florida tax law and the UF tax program.

      For details about each event, please visit us online at gassmanlawassociates.com/newsandevents.html

Alan S. Gassman, J.D., LL.M. is a practicing lawyer and author based in Clearwater, Florida. Mr. Gassman is the founder of the firm Gassman Law Associates, P.A., which focuses on the representation of physicians, high net worth individuals, and business owners in estate planning, taxation, and business and personal matters.  He is the lead author on Bloomberg BNA’s Estate Tax Planning and 2011 and 2012, Creditor Protection for Florida Physicians, Gassman & Markham on Florida and Federal Asset Protection Law, A Practical Guide to Kickback and Self-Referral Laws for Florida Physicians, The Florida Physician Advertising Handbook  and The Florida Guide to Prescription, Controlled Substance and Pain Medicine Laws, among others.  Mr. Gassman is a frequent speaker for continuing education programs, publishes regularly for Bloomberg BNA Tax & Accounting, Estates and Trusts Magazine, Estate Planning Magazine and Leimberg Estate Planning Network (LISI).  He holds a law degree and a Masters of Law degree (LL.M.) in Taxation from the University of Florida, and a business degree from Rollins College.  Mr. Gassman is board certified by the Florida Bar Association in Estate Planning and Trust Law, and has the Accredited Estate Planner designation for the National Association of Estate Planners & Councils.  Mr. Gassman’s email is Agassman@gassmanpa.com.

Thomas J. Ellwanger, J.D., is a lawyer practicing at the Clearwater, Florida firm of Gassman Law Associates, P.A.  Mr. Ellwanger received his B.A. in 1970 from Northwestern University and his J.D. with honors in 1974 from the University of Florida College of Law.  His practice areas include estate planning, trust and estate administration, personal tax planning and charitable tax planning.  Mr. Ellwanger is a member of the American College of Trusts and Estates Counsel (ACTEC). His email address is tom@gassmanpa.com.

Christopher Denicolo, J.D., LL.M. is a partner at the Clearwater, Florida law firm of Gassman Law Associates, P.A., where he practices in the areas of estate tax and trust planning, taxation, physician representation, and corporate and business law.  He has co-authored several handbooks that have been featured in Bloomberg BNA Tax & Accounting, Steve Leimberg’s Estate Planning and Asset Protection Planning Newsletters, and the Florida Bar Journal. He is also the author of the Federal Income Taxation of the Business Entity Chapter of the Florida Bar’s Florida Small Business Practice, Seventh Edition. Mr. Denicolo received his B.A. and B.S. degrees from Florida State University, his J.D. from Stetson University College of Law, and his LL.M. (Estate Planning) from the University of Miami.  His email address is Christopher@gassmanpa.com.

Kenneth J. Crotty, J.D., LL.M., is a partner at the Clearwater, Florida law firm of Gassman Law Associates, P.A., where he practices in the areas of estate tax and trust planning, taxation, physician representation, and corporate and business law. Mr. Crotty has co-authored several handbooks that have been published in BNA Tax & Accounting, Estate Planning, Steve Leimberg’s Estate Planning and Asset Protection Planning Newsletters, Estate Planning magazine, and Practical Tax Strategies.  Mr. Crotty is also the author of the Limited Liability Company Chapter of the Florida Bar’s Florida Small Business Practice, Seventh Edition. He, Alan Gassman and Christopher Denicolo are the co-authors of the BNA book Estate Tax Planning in 2011 & 2012. His email address is Ken@gassmanpa.com.

Thank you to our law clerks that assisted us in preparing this report.

The Thursday Report – May 30, 2013 – Quick Reference Guide for 2013 Bills for RPPTL Members, Delaware Law for Florida Clients and Lawyers in History

Posted on: May 30th, 2013

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THE BEST QUICK REFERENCE FOR 2013 FLORIDA BILLS THAT WILL AFFECT RPPTL SECTION MEMBERS: MARTHA J. EDENFIELD AND PETER M. DUNBAR’S NUMERICAL INDEX SUMMARY OF 2013 LEGISLATIVE ISSUES

JOIN US FOR OUR JUNE 11TH PRESENTATION OF THE JEST TRUST SYSTEM AS PART OF PHIL’S ULTIMATE ESTATE PLANNER – NEW MATERIALS AND FORMS!

DO NOT ASSUME THAT DELAWARE LAW WILL APPLY FOR YOUR FLORIDA CLIENTS: FAIRSTAR: AN UPDATE ON THE PERENNIALLY HYPED OUT-OF-STATE LLC - An article by Jeff Vandrew Jr., J.D., CPA

LAWYERS IN HISTORY: THE IMPACT OF LAW PRACTICE ON THEIR LIVES AND CAREERS: DAVID BOIES

We welcome contributions for future Thursday Report topics. If you are interested in making a contribution as a guest writer, please email Janine Ruggiero at Janine@gassmanpa.com.

This report and other Thursday Reports can be found on our website at www.gassmanlawassociates.com.

THE BEST QUICK REFERENCE FOR 2013 FLORIDA BILLS THAT WILL AFFECT RPPTL SECTION MEMBERS: MARTHA J. EDENFIELD AND PETER M. DUNBAR’S NUMERICAL INDEX SUMMARY OF 2013 LEGISLATIVE ISSUES

            There are a significant number of 2013 bills currently being presented or soon to be presented to Governor Scott. The Florida Senate’s 2013 Summary of Legislation Passed alone is 347 pages long! Click here for a copy of that “summary.”  Just reading the summaries of each law to see which may affect your clients could take a full day.

Thankfully, Martha J. Edenfield and Peter M. Dunbar of Pennington, P.A. have already done the work for you! Martha and Peter have created an excellent summary of the 2013 bills that will affect RPPTL members. They were able to boil down important bills into a few sentences so that readers can determine if they should further research the bill. Click here for a copy.

A big Thursday Report thank you to Martha and Peter for their excellent summary! Their work has saved all of us a lot of time. Make sure to thank Martha and Peter the next time you see them.

JOIN US FOR OUR JUNE 11TH PRESENTATION OF THE JEST TRUST SYSTEM AS PART OF PHIL’S ULTIMATE ESTATE PLANNER – NEW MATERIALS AND FORMS!

We are presently preparing new materials and forms for a June 11th presentation for Phil’s Ultimate Estate Planner on our JEST trust system, which was the subject of Liemberg Newsletter 2086. We are also working on a more advanced treatment of the subject for Estate Planning Magazine.

You can sign up for the teleconference with Phil’s Ultimate Estate Planner, which costs $149, by going to the website of Phil’s Ultimate Estate Planner, which can be viewed by clicking here.

The JEST trust system permits a married couple living in Florida, or other non-community property states, to hold “joint assets” under one trust agreement that allows a clear step-up in basis and credit shelter trust funding from the share of the first dying spouse. The JEST trust system is also designed to facilitate using the share of the surviving spouse to fund a “capitalized credit shelter trust B” that we believe makes use of the remainder of the first dying spouse’s estate tax exemption using the same rational that the IRS has used for a technical advice memorandum and four private letter rulings, while also qualifying the assets from the surviving spouse for a step-up in basis, if our reasoning and the technique we have developed is correct.

The JEST trust and its assets will not qualify as tenancy by the entireties assets for creditor protection planning, and not all advisors will feel confident that the IRS will accept the intended treatment, but if our technique is accepted in the same manner as the technical advice memorandum and four private letter rulings then a full funding of a credit shelter trust and a full stepped up basis for joint trust property can be achieved. You cannot get what you do not ask for!

DO NOT ASSUME THAT DELAWARE LAW WILL APPLY FOR YOUR FLORIDA CLIENTS:

Fairstar: An Update on the Perennially Hyped Out-Of-State LLC

An article by Jeff Vandrew Jr., J.D., CPA

 Jeff Vandrew

We recently found the following article on New Jersey Attorney and CPA Jeff Vandrew Jr.’s blog and thought it was so good that we had to share it. Jeff was generous enough to allow us.

Jeff is a board-certified Estate Planning Law Specialist, a designation granted by the Estate Specialist Law Board (an organization accredited by the American Bar Association) and CPA based out of New Jersey. Jeff’s website can be found by clicking here. Jeff also writes a blog that is updated about monthly, which can be found by clicking here.  Jeff also teaches continuing education courses for attorneys around the country on estate planning and asset protection. Jeff can be reached via email at jeffvandrewjr@vandrew.com or phone at (609) 568-0109.

Jeff’s article discusses the 2011 Delaware case American Instutional Partners LLC v. Fairstar Resources Ltd. The Fairstar case is an excellent example of how an out-of-state LLC may not protect an LLC if it is operating in a state other than its state of incorporation. We have researched the topic in Florida and have not found any Florida case law to the contrary. Without any further ado, here is Jeff’s article:

Fairstar: An Update on the Perennially Hyped Out-of-State LLC

One of the first posts I wrote on this blog was about the perceived benefits of forming an LLC for asset protection in a state other than your state of business or residence. You can reread the post here.  The short summary of that post is that (with some exceptions) I often recommend forming an LLC in your state of residence or business rather than out-of-state.  The privacy and/or asset protection benefits offered by another state won’t help you if the LLC is operating in your home state. Rereading the original post will provide more details.

There are times when forming an out-of-state LLC (usually in Delaware) makes sense. These situations involve defining the management structure of an operating business, however, rather than any sort of creditor protection.

Since my last post on the topic, a new opinion has come down that has bolstered my feelings on the issue.  In American Institutional Partners LLC v. Fairstar Resources Ltd., 2011 WL 1230074; 2011 Google Scholar 3785030167496996465 (D.De. 2011), a federal court in Delaware was asked to get involved in a charging order entered against several LLCs which were formed under Delaware law. The whole matter began when Fairstar filed suit in a Utah court. Fairstar won the case, and in collecting on its judgment asked the court to sell the debtors’ interest in the LLCs in a foreclosure action, as is permitted under Utah law. The debtors objected, claiming that because the LLCs were formed in Delaware, Delaware (rather than Utah) law applied to all remedies against the LLC interests. Under Delaware law, foreclosure sales are not permitted and a charging order is the sole remedy against an LLC interest. The Utah court ruled that since the LLC interests were under Utah jurisdiction, the Utah court had the power to apply Utah law and order the foreclosure sale despite the LLCs being “Delaware LLCs”.

The debtors then filed an action in federal court in Delaware to attempt to invalidate the foreclosure sale ordered by the Utah court. They were unsuccessful. The court recounted that the debtors had raised their objection that Delaware law should apply in the Utah proceeding, and that the objection was denied by the Utah court. The Delaware court found that it was bound to respect the Utah judgment, and under the doctrine of res judicata, it could not re-hear an issue which had already been definitely ruled upon by a valid final judgment (in this case, the judgment from the Utah court stating that Utah, not Delaware, law applied).

Fairstar gives another reason why I don’t recommend forming LLCs in Nevada, Wyoming, Delaware, or any other “special” state unless you happen to live in or do business in one of those states. [One exception to this general rule would be LLCs which are operating active businesses with complex relations between the members; I generally recommend forming such entities in Delaware.] For New Jersey residents, most of the time, it makes the most sense to form a New Jersey LLC.

 LAWYERS IN HISTORY: THE IMPACT OF LAW PRACTICE ON THEIR LIVES AND CAREERS: DAVID BOIES

            As part of our ongoing search for ways to entertain and educate, the Thursday Report is proud to introduce our new semi-regular feature: Lawyers in History: The Impact of Law Practice on Their Lives and Careers, which will share some of our favorite stories about the law and lawyers.

David Boies

Boies

Reading has nothing to do with intelligence.  It’s just one way of getting information.  The important thing is how a person processes that information, the kind of person we are, the contributions we make, and the kind of utility we have for society.

Becoming a successful attorney is a difficult endeavor. Becoming a nationally recognized attorney who has had the honor of arguing in front of the United States Supreme Court is an incredibly difficult endeavor. Now imagine how difficult it would be to earn these achievements with a learning disorder. Attorney David Boies has done just that. Boies has dyslexia, however, his learning disability has not stopped him from achieving greatness in the law. Boies graduated from Yale Law School with honors and later represented Al Gore in the Supreme Court case Bush v. Gore. Among his many other achievements, Boies negotiated multi-billion dollar settlements for American Express in their cases against Visa and MasterCard (among the highest civil settlements ever), represented the NBA Players Association in the 2011 NBA lockout, and was even portrayed by George Clooney in the 2012 play “8.”

APPLICABLE FEDERAL RATES

Please click here to view a chart of this month’s, last month’s, and the preceding month’s Applicable Federal Rates, because for a sale you can use the lowest of the 3.

SEMINARS AND WEBINARS

SEMINARS:

  • LUNCH TALK: HEALTH CARE REFORM 2013: WHAT LAWYERS NEED TO KNOW

Date: Monday, June 3, 2013 | 12:30 p.m.

Guest Speaker: Andrew McLaughlin, Esq.

Sponsor: Clearwater Bar Association

Additional Information: To register for this free webinar, please click here. [www.clearwaterbar.org]

  • THE JOINT EXEMPT STEP-UP TRUST (JEST)

Date: Tuesday, June 11, 2013 | 12pm Eastern/9am Pacific

Sponsor: The Ultimate Estate Planner, Inc.

Additional Information:  If you would like to attend this teleconference please click here to register.

  • FLORIDA LAW FOR TAX, BUSINESS AND ACCOUNTING ADVISORS

Date: Wednesday, June 19, 2013

Location: Chili’s U.S. 19 in Port Richey

Sponsor: North Suncoast Chapter of FICPA

Additional Information: If you would like to attend the meeting or receive a copy of the materials please email agassman@gassmanpa.com

  • INTERESTING INTEREST QUESTIONS, PLANNING WITH LOW INTEREST LOANS, PRIVATE ANNUITIES, DEFECTIVE GRANTOR TRUSTS, AND COMMERCIAL ANNUITY PRODUCTS

Date: Wednesday, October 16 through Friday, October 18, 2013

Location: Notre Dame College, South Bend, Indiana

Sponsor: Notre Dame Tax Institute

Additional Information: Professor Jerry Hesch’s Notre Dame Tax Institute will once again emphasize the importance of income tax planning and implications in addition to estate, estate tax, and related concepts.

Email us now to get your football tickets to the Notre Dame-USC game on October 19.

We welcome questions, comments and suggestions for the presentation that we are assisting Jerry in preparing and presenting.

  • HOT TOPICS FOR ESTATE PLANNERS

Date: Wednesday, October 23, 2013

Location: TBD

Sponsor: Pinellas County Estate Planning Council

Additional Information: To attend the meeting or to receive information on joining the Council please click here or email agassman@gassmanpa.com

  • WHAT HEALTH LAWYERS NEED TO KNOW ABOUT FLORIDA LAW

Date: Friday, November 1, 2013 | 9am – 5pm

Location: Seton Hall Law School, Newark, New Jersey

Sponsor: Health Law Section of the New Jersey Bar Association

Additional Information:  To receive a copy of the materials please email agassman@gassmanpa.com

  • WHAT NEW JERSEY LAWYERS NEED TO KNOW ABOUT FLORIDA LAW by Alan S. Gassman

Date: Saturday, November 2, 2013

Location: Wilshire Grand Hotel, West Orange, New Jersey | 9am – 12pm

Sponsor: New Jersey Institute for Continuing Legal Education, A Division of the New Jersey State Bar Association

Additional Information: For additional information please email agassman@gassmanpa.com

  • PRACTICAL ESTATE PLANNING, WITH A $5 MILLION EXEMPTION AMOUNT

Date: Thursday, November 7, 2013

Location: Hilton Downtown Salt Lake City, Utah

Sponsor: Sale Lake Estate Planning Council

Additional Information:  If you would like to attend this event or receive the materials please email agassman@gassmanpa.com

For details about each event, please visit us online at gassmanlawassociates.com/newsandevents.html

Alan S. Gassman, J.D., LL.M. is a practicing lawyer and author based in Clearwater, Florida. Mr. Gassman is the founder of the firm Gassman Law Associates, P.A., which focuses on the representation of physicians, high net worth individuals, and business owners in estate planning, taxation, and business and personal matters.  He is the lead author on Bloomberg BNA’s Estate Tax Planning and 2011 and 2012, Creditor Protection for Florida Physicians, Gassman & Markham on Florida and Federal Asset Protection Law, A Practical Guide to Kickback and Self-Referral Laws for Florida Physicians, The Florida Physician Advertising Handbook  and The Florida Guide to Prescription, Controlled Substance and Pain Medicine Laws, among others.  Mr. Gassman is a frequent speaker for continuing education programs, publishes regularly for Bloomberg BNA Tax & Accounting, Estates and Trusts Magazine, Estate Planning Magazine and Leimberg Estate Planning Network (LISI).  He holds a law degree and a Masters of Law degree (LL.M.) in Taxation from the University of Florida, and a business degree from Rollins College.  Mr. Gassman is board certified by the Florida Bar Association in Estate Planning and Trust Law, and has the Accredited Estate Planner designation for the National Association of Estate Planners & Councils.  Mr. Gassman’s email is Agassman@gassmanpa.com.

Thomas J. Ellwanger, J.D., is a lawyer practicing at the Clearwater, Florida firm of Gassman Law Associates, P.A.  Mr. Ellwanger received his B.A. in 1970 from Northwestern University and his J.D. with honors in 1974 from the University of Florida College of Law.  His practice areas include estate planning, trust and estate administration, personal tax planning and charitable tax planning.  Mr. Ellwanger is a member of the American College of Trusts and Estates Counsel (ACTEC). His email address is tom@gassmanpa.com.

Christopher Denicolo, J.D., LL.M. is a partner at the Clearwater, Florida law firm of Gassman Law Associates, P.A., where he practices in the areas of estate tax and trust planning, taxation, physician representation, and corporate and business law.  He has co-authored several handbooks that have been featured in Bloomberg BNA Tax & Accounting, Steve Leimberg’s Estate Planning and Asset Protection Planning Newsletters, and the Florida Bar Journal. He is also the author of the Federal Income Taxation of the Business Entity Chapter of the Florida Bar’s Florida Small Business Practice, Seventh Edition. Mr. Denicolo received his B.A. and B.S. degrees from Florida State University, his J.D. from Stetson University College of Law, and his LL.M. (Estate Planning) from the University of Miami.  His email address is Christopher@gassmanpa.com.

Kenneth J. Crotty, J.D., LL.M., is a partner at the Clearwater, Florida law firm of Gassman Law Associates, P.A., where he practices in the areas of estate tax and trust planning, taxation, physician representation, and corporate and business law. Mr. Crotty has co-authored several handbooks that have been published in BNA Tax & Accounting, Estate Planning, Steve Leimberg’s Estate Planning and Asset Protection Planning Newsletters, Estate Planning magazine, and Practical Tax Strategies.  Mr. Crotty is also the author of the Limited Liability Company Chapter of the Florida Bar’s Florida Small Business Practice, Seventh Edition. He, Alan Gassman and Christopher Denicolo are the co-authors of the BNA book Estate Tax Planning in 2011 & 2012. His email address is Ken@gassmanpa.com.

Thank you to our law clerks that assisted us in preparing this report:

Eric Moody graduated from Stetson University College of Law in December 2012 and was recently admitted to the Florida Bar. While at Stetson, Eric was an Articles and Symposia Editor for the Stetson Law Review. In 2009, Eric received a B.S. in Business Management from the University of South Florida. Eric’s email address is Eric@gassmanpa.com.

The Thursday Report – May 23, 2013 – Florida Bills That Will Affect RPPTL Section Members, 30 Days Rental Exception for Florida Homestead, How to Remove a Mug Shot from Google and Lawyers in History

Posted on: May 23rd, 2013

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THE NEW 30 DAYS RENTAL EXCEPTION FOR FLORIDA’S HOMESTEAD TAX LAW – JUST ONE OF MANY LAWS ABOUT TO BE SIGNED BY THE GOVERNOR

NOT AGAIN, COLONEL! – HOW TO REMOVE A MUG SHOT FROM GOOGLE IN 48 HOURS FOR AS LITTLE AS $99

Colonel Sanders

A DOUBLE FEATURE FROM DENIS KLEINFELD: IRS-Gate and the Continuing Absurdity of Tax Reform and Asset Stripping – A Fine American Tradition

NEW YORK TIMES STORY ON KFC SMUGGLING IN GAZA

LAWYERS IN HISTORY: THE IMPACT OF LAW PRACTICE ON THEIR LIVES AND CAREERS: MAHATMA GANDHI

PART II OF OUR BNA ARTICLE ENTITLED “WHAT YOU NEED TO KNOW ABOUT FLORIDA LAW TO ADVISE YOUR CLIENTS WHO LIVE HERE”

DIRECTIONS FROM OUR TAMPA OFFICE TO KENTUCKY FRIED CHICKEN ON KENNEDY AND SOUTH DAKOTA

“Thanks for doing the Thursday Report.  You make me look forward to Thursdays!”

- Nick Jovanovich, Berger Singerman Law Firm

We welcome contributions for future Thursday Report topics. If you are interested in making a contribution as a guest writer, please email Janine Ruggiero at Janine@gassmanpa.com.

This report and other Thursday Reports can be found on our website at www.gassmanlawassociates.com.

THE NEW 30 DAYS RENTAL EXCEPTION FOR FLORIDA’S HOMESTEAD TAX LAW – JUST ONE OF MANY LAWS ABOUT TO BE SIGNED BY THE GOVERNOR

Thanks to the above-mentioned summaries from Martha and Peter, we found Senate Bill 342, which was presented to Governor Scott on May 21, 2013. If signed, the bill will go into effect July 1, 2013. The new bill creates a 30 day exception to the rule that rental of a property constitutes abandonment of a homestead for purposes of the Save Our Homes assessment cap. The total number of rental days used will be calculated based on the calendar year, January 1—December 31. Here is the Florida Senate’s brief summary of Bill 342:

The rental of all or substantially all of a dwelling previously claimed to be a homestead for tax purposes constitutes the abandonment of the dwelling as a homestead. If the homestead is terminated, any Save Our Homes assessment limitation is forfeited and the property is assessed at just value.

The underlying rationale for the termination of homestead due to a rental is that the owner’s rental activity signifies the owner’s intent to reside elsewhere. There are occasions though when a property owner does not intend to abandon their residence through rental. Examples of these types of short-term rentals include those associated with annual sporting events, arts festivals, college graduations, or business-related symposiums and conventions.

SB 342 amends s. 196.061, F.S., to allow the rental of homestead property for up to 30 days per calendar year without the property being considered abandoned or affecting the homestead status of the property.

If approved by the Governor, these provisions take effect July 1, 2013.

This is great news for those who want to rent their home periodically while keeping their property taxes in check. Click here to view the bill in its entirety on the Florida Senate’s website and here for a copy of the Senate’s Analysis of the bill.

NOT AGAIN, COLONEL! – HOW TO REMOVE A MUG SHOT FROM GOOGLE IN

48 HOURS FOR AS LITTLE AS $99

Sometimes bad things happen to good colonels. And sometimes good colonels make mistakes. Unfortunately these types of situations can result in an arrest and mug shot, like the Colonel’s above. Regardless of innocence or guilt, mug shots often end up online and can appear when someone searches an arrested person’s name. This can be very harmful in many situations, such as when someone is searching for a new job or deciding which fried chicken proprietor to visit. Well don’t fear. The Thursday Report has found an inexpensive and quick way to stop mug shots from appearing in Google searches. Read on for details.

In most counties in Florida, the county sheriff’s office will make mug shots available online. Most county sheriff’s websites have a feature where you can search to see if a person has ever been arrested. If the person has been arrested, then the county sheriff’s website will usually display details of the arrest and a mug shot. But the good thing about most county sheriff’s office websites is that the arrest information and mug shots normally do not show up in a regular Google search for a person’s name.

The real problem is third party websites like www.mugshots.com and www.florida.arrests.org. These types of websites take the mug shots from county sheriff’s office websites and then publish the mug shots on their own website. Mug shots on these third party websites will then show up in regular Google searches and Google image searches.

Fortunately, there are services that can stop a mug shot from showing up in a Google search. We do not know how they do it, but they do work. We also do not know if the mug shot websites and the removal services are in cahoots, but we would be very interested if someone looked into this.

An online search for “mug shot removal service” will yield a number of different companies offering the service. We have found one website that works well and is very inexpensive: RemoveMyMug.com. We do not endorse this website or have any affiliation with RemoveMyMug.com; we can only say that it has worked in the past for us. We can’t get into details, but the Thursday Report has a “checkered” past.

RemoveMyMug.com costs $99 per mug shot removal. This means that you will have to pay $99 for each website that displays a mug shot. RemoveMyMug.com claims they typically take 24 hours or less for a removal, with some taking only minutes. They also offer a money back guarantee if they are unsuccessful.

Once the mug shot removal service removes the mug shot, the Google search result will not disappear automatically. Eventually Google will see that the link to the mug shot website no longer works and eliminate all search results. Until then, the mug shot listing will appear in Google’s search results, but if someone clicks on the search result they will receive a message that the page is no longer available. This is called a dead link. Google’s removal process can take anywhere from one to thirty days. But it is possible to make the dead link disappear in a few hours.

Google allows people to report dead links, like a removed mug shot. To do this, first you go to the Google content removal page. Click here for the page.  Click on the option that says “Remove content that’s not live.” Then log in using a Google account. You can make one up if you do not already have one. After that you will see a button in the middle of the Google webpage that says “Create a new removal request.” Click on this button and paste the URL for any mug shot webpage that was deleted. The easiest way to do this is to open a second webpage or browser, perform a Google search for the person’s name, and then copy and paste any search results that are showing. We have found that Google will often remove a dead link in just a few hours.

That should take care of any Google search results. If you or your client are interested in expunging an arrest record, then you should check individual county websites to learn how to do so.

 A DOUBLE FEATURE FROM DENIS KLEINFELD: IRS-Gate and the Continuing Absurdity of Tax Reform and Asset Stripping – A Fine American Tradition

Denis Kleinfeld

Attorney Denis Kleinfeld has been kind enough to provide us with two articles for this week’s Thursday Report, one on “IRS-Gate” and one on asset stripping. Read on for Denis’ articles.

Denis is Of Counsel to Fuerst Ittleman David & Joseph, PL, in Miami, Florida and Professor of Law, LLM International Tax Program, Thomas Jefferson School of Law, San Diego, California.  Denis advises both U.S. and international businesspersons, investors, professionals, families, and individuals in asset protection and wealth preservation, U.S. and international estate planning, income tax analysis and planning, tax compliance, business transactions, asset and personal migration, and investment planning, structuring and implantation.

Mr. Kleinfeld is co-author of the two-volume treatise “Practical International Tax Planning.” To learn more about this must-have reference tool, or to purchase this book, please click here.  

You can contact Mr. Kleinfeld at deniskleinfeld@fuerstlaw.com or (813) 227-7487.

IRS-Gate and the Continuing Absurdity of Tax Reform

By: Denis Kleinfeld

 Denis Kleinfeld’s opinions are his own and do not reflect those of the Thursday Report or Colonel Sanders.

What is the background for the current astounding example of Congressional investigations of the IRS?

Ever since Congress pushed through legislation to enact an income tax and the 16th Amendment in 1913, the income tax system has been a never-ending source of abuse, corruption, fraud, malfeasance and class-warfare.

Name any president or Congress and you’ll find the IRS was being used as a social and political weapon.

Exactly what the signers of the Constitution did not want, Congress in their own arrogance of power did — and are still doing.

The self-righteous outrage by Congress, and the typical “Gee, I didn’t know what was going on” response by the president is just their usual kabuki dance.

This strikes me as nothing more than the king and his nobles being surprised that the Royal Torturer is mistreating the peasants.

This same scenario played out rather dramatically under President Clinton in 1997. A rather long history of tax abuse by the government against its taxpayers finally came to a head.

As reported by CNN in September of that year, accusations of “gestapo-like tactics employed by the tax agency” abounded.

IRS historian Shelley Davis, who wrote about the IRS in “Unbridled Power,” described the IRS activities that are as true today as they were then.

“Davis described the IRS as ‘the best secret-keeping agency in our government today. They are better than the CIA, better than the FBI,’” CNN reported.

What were some of the discoveries about the IRS that she relayed to the Senate Finance Committee?

“I discovered that the IRS does keep a list of American citizens for no other reason than their political activities might have offended someone in the IRS; about how the IRS believes that anyone who offers even legitimate criticism of the tax collector is a tax protestor; about how the IRS shreds its paper trail, which means that there is no history, no evidence and, ultimately, no accountability.”

David Burnham, author of “A Law Unto Itself: The IRS and the Abuse of Power,” told the Committee that audits motivated by politics can occur; however, there doesn’t need to be direct pressure from the administration to get one started, according to CNN.

CNN reported Burnham as saying, “It is not as simple as the White House calling the commissioner and saying, ‘Go get these guys,’ because if there is a perception inside the IRS that the administration wants to protect itself from this kind of scrutiny, the IRS may very well do it on their own. It doesn’t take direction from the White House; the IRS has the power on their own to do it — there’s nothing to stop them from doing it.”

Out of the hearings came new legislation. In 1998, the Senate and the House passed the Internal Revenue Service Restructuring and Reform Act.

Among other provisions, it created the Internal Revenue Service Oversight Board. However, since the date of inception, this board has never found any abuse of power by the IRS.

Then-Senate Finance Committee Chairman William Roth, Jr., R-Del., published a book titled “The Power to Destroy: How the IRS Became America” in 1999 where he explained the IRS’ power to destroy the taxpayers, but how Congress is taking back control.

Be prepared for new cries by Congress to really reform the IRS this time. That is, of course, with a generous campaign contribution from you.

Ultimately, the only answer to the abuse of the taxing power inherent in an income tax system is to repeal income tax (flat or progressive) and repeal the 16th Amendment.

Denis Kleinfeld’s opinions are his own and do not reflect those of the Thursday Report or Colonel Sanders.

Asset Stripping – A Fine American Tradition

By: Denis Kleinfeld

 The legal battle between debtors and creditors has two centuries of American tradition behind it. This was recognized on March 30, 2000 by the New York Court of Appeals in deciding an international debt collection case. The fact that it was decided in New York has significant importance because of New York’s prominence in the worldwide financial markets.

In Credit Agricole Indosuez v. Rossiyskiy Kredit Bank, 94 N.Y. 2d 541 (N.Y. App. 2000), the debtors were attempting to put liens on assets prior to judgment.  Creditors, as might be expected, sought the help of the New York courts by requesting preliminary injunctive relief. But New York’s highest court, in overturning the decision of two lower courts, rejected the plaintiff’s position and held that the New York courts cannot be used by general creditors to freeze globally the assets of a debtor. A great decision for those trying to protect assets.

In this case, three European banks were trying to collect on thirty million dollars in promissory notes which had been issued by Russia’s sixth largest bank and its Dutch subsidiary, a securities company.  In view of the financial crisis occurring in Russia, it is understandable that the creditors were concerned that assets that might otherwise be available to pay the debts would be stripped away.  The promissory notes provided for jurisdiction in New York in the event of default and, acting on those provisions, the creditors obtained a preliminary injunction from the lower court freezing the banks’ assets in New York.

The Court of Appeals, in lifting that injunction, reviewed the historical legal principles of these forms of claims.

Under U.S. law, a creditor must usually have a judgment before taking actions to obtain ownership, force a sale, or obtain control over a debtor’s assets. The court noted that since the 18th century, the American courts have “consistently refused to grant general creditors a preliminary injunction to restrain a debtor’s asset transfers that allegedly would defeat satisfaction of any anticipated judgment.”  This certainly has a decided impact even when considering that creditors would have legal rights under fraudulent conveyance statutes or bankruptcy law.

The New York court relied on the 1999 U.S. Supreme Court case of Groupo Mexicano de Desarrollo, S.A. v. Alliance Bond Fund, Inc., 119 S.Ct. 1961 (1999), where a preliminary injunction was sought in a parallel factual situation.  Plaintiffs in that case also asserted that the debtor was at risk of insolvency, if not already insolvent, and that dissipating its most significant assets would frustrate any judgment the creditors would obtain.  In Groupo Mexicano, the U.S. Supreme Court stated that the law ever since the Federal Judiciary Act of 1789 provided that preliminary injunctive relief was beyond the traditional principle of equity jurisdiction, and that the courts should not allow such actions.  As the Supreme Court found, “a general creditor (one without a judgment) had no cognizable interest, either at law or in equity, in the property of his debtor, and therefore could not interfere with the debtor’s use of that property.” A simple accurate statement of fundamental law.

Creditors’ lawyers, if nothing else, are ingenious at thinking up legal arguments. In Credit Agricole, they came up with a cause of action alleging that the defendant bank, being presently insolvent, owed a fiduciary duty to preserve assets for the benefit of general creditors.  They alleged that when the bank transferred the principle assets to avoid the creditors, they breached their fiduciary duty and therefore the courts should award permanent injunctive relief to protect the expected money judgment.

The New York court didn’t buy that argument.  As it observed, the fiduciary duty argument was only incidental to the enforcement of the primary relief sought – the money judgment.  “Making an exception on the basis that permanent equitable relief is sought in support of a suit essentially for money only would be too facile a way to avoid and undermine the settled proscription against preliminary injunctions merely to preserve a fund for eventual execution of judgment in suits for money damages” That is, the mere danger of asset stripping is not a sufficient basis for the courts to make an exception to the general rule that has been recognized for two centuries in American law.

Although the lawyers for the creditors urged a change in the law, the New York court specifically rejected the idea of liberalizing and expanding the remedies that are already available under the American legal system.  The Plaintiffs urged that they follow the example of the English courts and establish Mareva type injunctions which would allow worldwide freezing of assets. They stated that this would be necessary in response to the increase globalization of capital markets.  This argument was also raised in the Groupo Mexicano, and like the United States Supreme Court, the New York court also rejected this argument.

There really is nothing new about these cases.  For example, in Florida under Bayview Estates Corp. v. Southerland, 154 So. 894 (Fla. 1934), the Supreme Court of Florida noted that “the mere fact that a person may be indebted to another does not render a conveyance of his property a fraud in law upon its creditors. The owner of property, whether real or personal, possesses the absolute right to dispose of all or any part of it as he sees fit.” The traditional view has always been that a creditor has no cognizable interest in the property of a debtor until the creditor obtains a judgment.

This of course has profound impact upon asset protection planning.  For one thing, it makes it clear that a debtor has the absolute legal right to transfer his property so long as that property is freely alienable and the transfer is not illegal.  Even though a creditor apparently may be able to obtain a judgment on the debt, the fact remains that the creditor’s legal rights do not rise until that judgment is actually obtained. Cases such as Groupo Mexicano, which is the federal law of the United States, and Credit Agricole, which is the law in New York,  provides support for many planners who for years have espoused the view that asset protection planning is not only perfectly legal but is in the great American tradition.

A big Thursday Report thank you goes out to Denis for both of his articles!

NEW YORK  TIMES STORY ON KFC SMUGGLING IN GAZA

Thursday Report Reader and Consulting Structural Engineer extraordinaire Carl Jenne of Winter Park, Florida sent us an incredible story from the New York Times about an Egyptian entrepreneur who smuggles KFC into Gaza through smuggling tunnels. From customer order to delivery, the process is very complicated and takes many steps, including ordering through a Facebook page, wire transfers of money, coordination with and approval from the Hamas government, and of course smuggling tunnels. The author said it took about four hours to receive his order.

The complicated process from order to delivery is almost unbelievable, unless you have tried the Extra Crispy style chicken of course.  Click here to read the story in its entirety.  A big Thursday Report thank you to Carl, who may someday smuggle Thursday Reports into Gaza.

LAWYERS IN HISTORY: THE IMPACT OF LAW PRACTICE ON THEIR LIVES AND CAREERS: MAHATMA GANDHI

            As part of our ongoing search for ways to entertain and educate, the Thursday Report is proud to introduce our new regular feature: Lawyers in History: The Impact of Law Practice on Their Lives and Careers, which will share some of our favorite stories about the law and lawyers. This week’s story is about Mahatma Gandhi’s initial struggle to find his way in law.

Gandhi

Mahatma Gandhi

The true function of a lawyer is to unite parties driven asunder.

Everyone knows Mahatma Gandhi was a symbol of peace and non-violent civil disobedience, but not everyone knows about his inauspicious start in law. After graduating from University College London in England, Gandhi attempted to establish a law practice in Bombay but the practice failed because Gandhi was too shy to argue in court. Gandhi then tried to open a practice in Rajkot, India. Gandhi’s practice in Rajkot was successful enough that he was able to make a modest living, but he was eventually forced to close his practice because he had angered a British officer. After closing his practice, Gandhi moved to South Africa to practice law. In South Africa, Gandhi finally began to develop into the world leader we know today.

It is a good thing that Mr. Gandhi did not remain practicing law full time.  If he had not led the India freedom movement, the civil right movement in the United States would have been completely different, and our continuing progress towards societal change for the better would be decades behind where it is now.

PART II OF OUR BNA ARTICLE ENTITLED “WHAT YOU NEED TO KNOW ABOUT FLORIDA LAW TO ADVISE YOUR CLIENTS WHO LIVE HERE”

Our article “What You Need To Know About Florida Law to Advise Your Clients Who Live Here – Part II” was included in the May/June Bloomberg BNA Tax Management Estates, Gifts and Trusts Journal.  A copy of this part of the article can be viewed by clicking here.  If you do not subscribe to Tax Management Estates, Gifts and Trusts Journal please consider doing so.  If you subscribe electronically please ask someone in your organization to print this out for you periodically.  It is one of the best estate planning magazines available.

DIRECTIONS FROM OUR TAMPA OFFICE TO KENTUCKY FRIED CHICKEN ON KENNEDY AND SOUTH DAKOTA

            Many readers have asked how far our Tampa office is from the Kentucky Fried Chicken on South Dakota and Kennedy.  As you walk out of the front door near the free beverage refill station (and take unlimited napkins) you make  left and go straight down South Dakota to our office.

APPLICABLE FEDERAL RATES

Please click here to view a chart of this month’s, last month’s, and the preceding month’s Applicable Federal Rates, because for a sale you can use the lowest of the 3.

SEMINARS AND WEBINARS

  • THE 444 SHOW – PRENUPTIAL AGREEMENTS

Date: Thursday, May 23, 2013 | 4:00 p.m.

Guest Speakers: Ky Koch, Esq. and Judge Jirotka

Sponsor: Clearwater Bar Association

Additional Information: To register for this $30 CLE credit webinar please click here.

  • VALUABLE PLANNING FOR SNOWBIRDS: TIPS, TRAPS AND TACTICS FOR ADVISORS WITH CLIENTS IN FLORIDA

 Date: Tuesday, May 28, 2013, 12:30 p.m.

Sponsor: Bloomberg BNA Tax & Accounting

Additional Information: Please click here to register.

Thursday Report Readers can use the top secret, very confidential promotional code “GASSMAN” to receive a $100 discount off the price of the webinar or the webinar and CD package. Please don’t tell anyone who attended Florida State University.

  • LUNCH TALK: HEALTH CARE REFORM 2013: WHAT LAWYERS NEED TO KNOW

Date: Monday, June 3, 2013 | 12:30 p.m.

Guest Speaker: Andrew McLaughlin, Esq.

Sponsor: Clearwater Bar Association

Additional Information: To register for this free webinar, please click here.

  • THE JOINT EXEMPT STEP-UP TRUST (JEST)

Date: Tuesday, June 11, 2013 | 12pm Eastern/9am Pacific

Sponsor: The Ultimate Estate Planner, Inc.

Additional Information:  If you would like to attend this teleconference please click here to register.

  • FLORIDA LAW FOR TAX, BUSINESS AND ACCOUNTING ADVISORS

Date: Wednesday, June 19,2013

Location: Chili’s U.S. 19 in Port Richey

Sponsor: North Suncoast Chapter of FICPA

Additional Information: If you would like to attend the meeting or receive a copy of the materials please email agassman@gassmanpa.com

  • INTERESTING INTEREST QUESTIONS, PLANNING WITH LOW INTEREST LOANS, PRIVATE ANNUITIES, DEFECTIVE GRANTOR TRUSTS, AND COMMERCIAL ANNUITY PRODUCTS

Date: Wednesday, October 16 through Friday, October 18, 2013

Location: Notre Dame College, South Bend, Indiana

Sponsor: Notre Dame Tax Institute

Additional Information: Professor Jerry Hesch’s Notre Dame Tax Institute will once again emphasize the importance of income tax planning and implications in addition to estate, estate tax, and related concepts.

Email us now to get your football tickets to the Notre Dame-USC game on October 19.

 We welcome questions, comments and suggestions for the presentation that we are assisting Jerry in preparing and presenting.

  • HOT TOPICS FOR ESTATE PLANNERS

 Date: Wednesday, October 23, 2013

 Location: TBD

 Sponsor: Pinellas County Estate Planning Council

 Additional Information: To attend the meeting or to receive information on joining the Council please click here or email agassman@gassmanpa.com

  • WHAT HEALTH LAWYERS NEED TO KNOW ABOUT FLORIDA LAW

 Date: Friday, November 1, 2013 | 9am – 5pm

 Location: Seton Hall Law School, Newark, New Jersey

 Sponsor: Health Law Section of the New Jersey Bar Association

 Additional Information:  To receive a copy of the materials please email agassman@gassmanpa.com

  • WHAT NEW JERSEY LAWYERS NEED TO KNOW ABOUT FLORIDA LAW

Date: Saturday, November 2, 2013

Location: Wilshire Grand Hotel, West Orange, New Jersey | 9am – 12pm

Sponsor: New Jersey Institute for Continuing Legal Education, A Division of the New Jersey State Bar Association

Additional Information: For additional information please email agassman@gassmanpa.com

  • PRACTICAL ESTATE PLANNING, WITH A $5 MILLION EXEMPTION AMOUNT

 Date: Thursday, November 7, 2013

 Location: Hilton Downtown Salt Lake City, Utah

 Sponsor: Sale Lake Estate Planning Council

 Additional Information:  If you would like to attend this event or receive the materials please email agassman@gassmanpa.com

 For details about each event, please visit us online at gassmanlawassociates.com/newsandevents.html

Alan S. Gassman, J.D., LL.M. is a practicing lawyer and author based in Clearwater, Florida. Mr. Gassman is the founder of the firm Gassman Law Associates, P.A., which focuses on the representation of physicians, high net worth individuals, and business owners in estate planning, taxation, and business and personal matters.  He is the lead author on Bloomberg BNA’s Estate Tax Planning and 2011 and 2012, Creditor Protection for Florida Physicians, Gassman & Markham on Florida and Federal Asset Protection Law, A Practical Guide to Kickback and Self-Referral Laws for Florida Physicians, The Florida Physician Advertising Handbook  and The Florida Guide to Prescription, Controlled Substance and Pain Medicine Laws, among others.  Mr. Gassman is a frequent speaker for continuing education programs, publishes regularly for Bloomberg BNA Tax & Accounting, Estates and Trusts Magazine, Estate Planning Magazine and Leimberg Estate Planning Network (LISI).  He holds a law degree and a Masters of Law degree (LL.M.) in Taxation from the University of Florida, and a business degree from Rollins College.  Mr. Gassman is board certified by the Florida Bar Association in Estate Planning and Trust Law, and has the Accredited Estate Planner designation for the National Association of Estate Planners & Councils.  Mr. Gassman’s email is Agassman@gassmanpa.com.

Thomas J. Ellwanger, J.D., is a lawyer practicing at the Clearwater, Florida firm of Gassman Law Associates, P.A.  Mr. Ellwanger received his B.A. in 1970 from Northwestern University and his J.D. with honors in 1974 from the University of Florida College of Law.  His practice areas include estate planning, trust and estate administration, personal tax planning and charitable tax planning.  Mr. Ellwanger is a member of the American College of Trusts and Estates Counsel (ACTEC). His email address is tom@gassmanpa.com.

Christopher Denicolo, J.D., LL.M. is a partner at the Clearwater, Florida law firm of Gassman Law Associates, P.A., where he practices in the areas of estate tax and trust planning, taxation, physician representation, and corporate and business law.  He has co-authored several handbooks that have been featured in Bloomberg BNA Tax & Accounting, Steve Leimberg’s Estate Planning and Asset Protection Planning Newsletters, and the Florida Bar Journal. He is also the author of the Federal Income Taxation of the Business Entity Chapter of the Florida Bar’s Florida Small Business Practice, Seventh Edition. Mr. Denicolo received his B.A. and B.S. degrees from Florida State University, his J.D. from Stetson University College of Law, and his LL.M. (Estate Planning) from the University of Miami.  His email address is Christopher@gassmanpa.com.

Kenneth J. Crotty, J.D., LL.M., is a partner at the Clearwater, Florida law firm of Gassman Law Associates, P.A., where he practices in the areas of estate tax and trust planning, taxation, physician representation, and corporate and business law. Mr. Crotty has co-authored several handbooks that have been published in BNA Tax & Accounting, Estate Planning, Steve Leimberg’s Estate Planning and Asset Protection Planning Newsletters, Estate Planning magazine, and Practical Tax Strategies.  Mr. Crotty is also the author of the Limited Liability Company Chapter of the Florida Bar’s Florida Small Business Practice, Seventh Edition. He, Alan Gassman and Christopher Denicolo are the co-authors of the BNA book Estate Tax Planning in 2011 & 2012. His email address is Ken@gassmanpa.com.

Thank you to our law clerk that assisted us in preparing this report:

Eric Moody graduated from Stetson University College of Law in December 2012 and was recently admitted to the Florida Bar. While at Stetson, Eric was an Articles and Symposia Editor for the Stetson Law Review. In 2009, Eric received a B.S. in Business Management from the University of South Florida. Eric’s email address is Eric@gassmanpa.com.

 

 

 

The Thursday Report – May 16, 2013 – Avoiding Estate Tax, Special Clauses for Trust Agreements and The Most Important Changes to Florida Estate Planning Law in 2013

Posted on: May 16th, 2013

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GROUCHO’S LETTER TO WARNER BROTHERS

FLY A KITE – AVOIDING ESTATE TAX WITH A ONE YEAR OR LONGER LIFE EXPECTANCY, PART II

SPECIAL CLAUSES FOR TRUST AGREEMENTS

THE TIMES THEY ARE A-CHANGIN’ – THE MOST IMPORTANT PROPOSED CHANGES TO FLORIDA ESTATE PLANNING LAW IN 2013

We welcome contributions for future Thursday Report topics. If you are interested in making a contribution as a guest writer, please email Janine Ruggiero at Janine@gassmanpa.com.

This report and other Thursday Reports can be found on our website at www.gassmanlawassociates.com.

GROUCHO’S LETTER TO WARNER BROTHERS

I have a hunch that this attempt to prevent us from using the title is the brainchild of some ferret-faced shyster, serving a brief apprenticeship in your legal department.”

We can’t get enough of the Marx Brothers, in particular a letter that Groucho Marx wrote to Warner Brothers after they accused the Marx Brothers of using a film title that was too close to a film title released by Warner Brothers. In 1947, the Marx Brothers received a letter from Warner Brothers that threatened legal action because the Marx Brothers planned to film a movie called A Night in Casablanca.  Warner Brothers felt the title was too close to their own film, the 1942 blockbuster Casablanca, which was released nearly five years earlier.

With characteristic chutzpa, Groucho Marx sent the following letter to the studio giant’s legal department. Share this with your intellectual property oriented clients. It is extremely well written.

Dear Warner Brothers:

            Apparently there is more than one way of conquering a city and holding it as your own. For example, up to the time that we contemplated making this picture, I had no idea that the city of Casablanca belonged exclusively to Warner Brothers. However, it was only a few days after our announcement appeared that we received your long, ominous legal document warning us not to use the name Casablanca.

It seems that in 1471, Ferdinand Balboa Warner, your great-great-grandfather, while looking for a shortcut to the city of Burbank, had stumbled on the shores of Africa and, raising his alpenstock (which he later turned in for a hundred shares of common), named it Casablanca.

I just don’t understand your attitude. Even if you plan on releasing your picture, I am sure that the average movie fan could learn in time to distinguish between Ingrid Bergman and Harpo. I don’t know whether I could, but I certainly would like to try.

You claim that you own Casablanca and that no one else can use that name without permission. What about “Warner Brothers”? Do you own that too? You probably have the right to use the name Warner, but what about the name Brothers? Professionally, we were brothers long before you were. We were touring the sticks as the Marx Brothers when Vitaphone was still a gleam in the inventor’s eye, and even before there had been other brothers—the Smith Brothers; the Brothers Karamazov; Dan Brothers, an outfielder with Detroit; and “Brother, Can You Spare a Dime?” (This was originally “Brothers, Can You Spare a Dime?” but this was spreading a dime pretty thin, so they threw out one brother, gave all the money to the other one, and whittled it down to “Brother, Can You Spare a Dime?”)

Now Jack, how about you? Do you maintain that yours is an original name? Well it’s not. It was used long before you were born. Offhand, I can think of two Jacks—Jack of “Jack and the Beanstalk,” and Jack the Ripper, who cut quite a figure in his day.

As for you, Harry, you probably sign your checks sure in the belief that you are the first Harry of all time and that all other Harrys are impostors. I can think of two Harrys that preceded you. There was Lighthouse Harry of Revolutionary fame and a Harry Appelbaum who lived on the corner of 93rd Street and Lexington Avenue. Unfortunately, Appelbaum wasn’t too well-known. The last I heard of him, he was selling neckties at Weber and Heilbroner.

Now about the Burbank studio. I believe this is what you brothers call your place. Old man Burbank is gone. Perhaps you remember him. He was a great man in a garden. His wife often said Luther had ten green thumbs. What a witty woman she must have been! Burbank was the wizard who crossed all those fruits and vegetables until he had the poor plants in such confused and jittery condition that they could never decide whether to enter the dining room on the meat platter or the dessert dish.

This is pure conjecture, of course, but who knows—perhaps Burbank’s survivors aren’t too happy with the fact that a plant that grinds out pictures on a quota settled in their town, appropriated Burbank’s name and uses it as a front for their films. It is even possible that the Burbank family is prouder of the potato produced by the old man than they are of the fact that your studio emerged “Casablanca” or even “Gold Diggers of 1931.”

This all seems to add up to a pretty bitter tirade, but I assure you it’s not meant to. I love Warners. Some of my best friends are Warner Brothers. It is even possible that I am doing you an injustice and that you, yourselves, know nothing about this dog-in-the-Wanger attitude. It wouldn’t surprise me at all to discover that the heads of your legal department are unaware of this absurd dispute, for I am acquainted with many of them and they are fine fellows with curly black hair, double-breasted suits and a love of their fellow man that out-Saroyans Saroyan.

I have a hunch that this attempt to prevent us from using the title is the brainchild of some ferret-faced shyster, serving a brief apprenticeship in your legal department. I know the type well—hot out of law school, hungry for success, and too ambitious to follow the natural laws of promotion. This bar sinister probably needled your attorneys, most of whom are fine fellows with curly black hair, double-breasted suits, etc., into attempting to enjoin us. Well, he won’t get away with it! We’ll fight him to the highest court! No pasty-faced legal adventurer is going to cause bad blood between the Warners and the Marxes. We are all brothers under the skin, and we’ll remain friends till the last reel of “A Night in Casablanca” goes tumbling over the spool.

Sincerely,

Groucho Marx

The legal department at Warner Brothers was not amused with Groucho’s letter and responded with a letter requesting that the Marx Brothers provide a description of their film. Groucho replied with a convoluted and ridiculous plot, even by the Marx Brothers’ typically ludicrous standards. Warner Brothers responded with an unamused letter that requested clarification on the plot. Groucho seized the opportunity and proceeded to draft an even more ridiculous version of A Night in Casablanca. In the end, it seems that Groucho and satire came out victorious, as Warner Brothers did not respond, and A Night in Casablanca was released in 1946.

 FLY A KITE PART II – 2519 REASONS TO BE CAREFUL WITH THE STEP TRANSACTION DOCTRINE

            The Kite case has brought a three ring circus of new case law and implications for advisors along with it.  The case reminds us to be aware of the Step Transaction Doctrine.  Application of this doctrine could cause unintended results for advisors and their clients.

            In recognition of the importance of this case, The Thursday Report is preparing a special video summary of the case that will be available next week, featuring a soon to be well-known Broadway starlet (if you know any, please have them call us soon).

            The Step Transaction Doctrine is a judicially created doctrine which combines a series of seemingly independent steps into one, concentrating on the substance of a transaction rather than the actual form.

            As the surviving spouse of Mr. Kite, Mrs. Kite was the beneficiary of Q-TIP trusts.  In 1996, she contributed the assets of the Q-TIP trusts to the Baldwin Limited Partnership in exchange for limited partnership interests.  The Q-TIP trusts later sold the interests in the Baldwin Limited Partnership to her children in exchange for promissory notes.  Mrs. Kite was still the income beneficiary of the Q-TIP trusts, and therefore the trusts still continued to qualify as Q-TIP trusts.

            Later the Q-TIP trusts contributed these notes to a new partnership, the KIC (not to be confused with KFC) Partnership, in exchange for limited partner interests.  She continued to have a qualifying income interest in the Trusts’ assets and therefore the Trusts continued to qualify as Q-TIP trusts.

            On January 1, 2001, Mrs. Kite’s children became the trustees of the Q-TIP trusts.  On that same day, the Kite children terminated the Q-TIP trusts by distributing the Q-TIP trusts’ assets to Mrs. Kite’s revocable trust.  As a result, Mrs. Kite’s revocable trust owned the limited partner interests in the KIC Partnership.

            Two days later, Mrs. Kite’s revocable trust sold its entire interest in the partnership to the children under three private annuity agreements.  The private annuity agreements had a combined value of $10,605,278.  The first annuity payments were not due until ten years after the transaction, and would thereafter be made every year until Mrs. Kite’s death.

            In situations where a surviving spouse disposes of all or part of his or her qualifying income interest, Section 2519 will apply so that the spouse will be treated as having made a taxable gift equal to the value of the Q-TIP assets minus the income stream retained by the surviving spouse if any such interest is retained.  Treasury Regulation Section 25.2519-1(f) specifically provides that the sale of Q-TIP assets “followed by the payment to the donee spouse of a portion of the proceeds equal to the value of the donee spouse’s income interest, is considered a disposition of the qualifying income interest” and will trigger the application of Section 2519.

            The Court agreed with the IRS’ argument to apply the Step Transaction Doctrine to Mrs. Kite’s annuity transaction.  The Court found that the termination of the Q-TIP trusts and subsequent sale of assets in exchange for the annuity payment rights were part of a prearranged plan.  As a result, Mrs. Kite was treated as having disposed of her income interest in the Q-TIP trusts in exchange for the deferred annuity.

            It is significant that the Trustees of the Q-TIP trusts had the discretion to terminate the Q-TIP trusts.  However, the Court noted that the estate provided no evidence as to why the trusts were terminated.

            Instead the Court found that the estate was trying to avoid the application of Section 2519 by terminating the Q-TIP trusts and distributing the assets to Mrs. Kite individually, and then having Mrs. Kite sell her “individual assets” in exchange for the annuity.  If the Court had accepted the Kite’s planning, the application of Section 2519 would have been avoided and Mrs. Kite would not have owed any gift tax under Section 2519.

            Because Mrs. Kite received adequate and full consideration for her interests in the KIC Partnership which were sold by receiving the deferred annuities, the Court treated Mrs. Kite as having made a disposition of her qualifying income interest in the assets of the Q-TIP trusts.  Mrs. Kite owed gift tax under Section 2519 to the extent of the fair market value of the entire property subject to Mrs. Kite’s qualifying income interests less the value of her qualifying income interests, determined on the date of annuity transaction.  The Court noted that because Mrs. Kite received full and adequate consideration for her income interest she did not make a gift of the qualifying income interest under Section 2519.

            Mrs. Kite may have avoided the application of Section 2519 if she had waited longer than two days after receiving the Q-TIP assets and selling these assets in exchange for the private annuity.  Mrs. Kite might have also avoided the application of the Step Transaction Doctrine if she had been able to supply a business purpose or other legitimate reason why the assets of the Q-TIP trusts were distributed outright to her before she entered into the private annuity transaction.

Additional History

            Being For the Benefit of Mr. Kite lyrics were inspired by a circus poster from the Victorian era that Lennon found in an antique shop.  Mr. Kite was a real circus acrobat; tightrope walking, horse-riding and all.

            Sergeant Pepper’s was the original concept album, with the Beatles shedding their mop-top identities and recording as a different band entirely.  They played with new tools, effects, and techniques.

            Speaking of new techniques, try the mashed potatoes right on top of the corn for a delicious layered effect!

SPECIAL CLAUSES FOR TRUST AGREEMENTS

This morning at The Florida Bar Annual Wealth Protection Seminar in Miami, FL, Alan S. Gassman offered his Using Estate Planning Techniques to Optimize Family Wealth Presentation. If you were not able to attend this seminar, consider buying the materials from The Florida Bar, which include a special appearance from Jerry Hesch to discuss the Kite case. We thank Professor Hesch for his thoughts on the case. If he had any rhythm, we would have him star alongside the unnamed starlet in our forthcoming video on the Kite case.

A significant portion of Alan’s presentation was about making sure that trusts are specifically tailored for each individual client’s needs. Below is an excerpt from Alan’s presentation about how to make sure to meet this goal. If you would like a copy of the complete PowerPoint presentation, please email Janine Ruggiero at Janine@gassmanpa.com.

Not all trusts are created equal.

            While the trust agreements that we typically prepare for clients have a number of clauses that give instructions to trustees on how and when to determine what income, support, and principal payments should be made to beneficiaries, different clients have different views and preferences.  Here is a list of questions and approaches that can be considered in trust design and implementation.

            1.         Whether to let the beneficiary of a particular trust have a voice as co-trustee or the ability to replace any acting trustee with a licensed trust company or other trustworthy trustee or advisor.

            2.         Whether to require that the beneficiary would have a prenuptial agreement or a post-nuptial agreement before being able to inherit from a trust or to receive any significant benefits or to have control.

            3.         Whether there should be a monthly or annual distribution amount guideline that would be presumed to be the maximum that a person should receive, the minimum that a person should receive, or a provision that gives a minimum and a maximum that can be changed with the Consumer Price Index.

            4.         Whether young beneficiaries should be required to finish a four year degree, a post-undergraduate degree, work full time, have a profession, or be a full time homemaker with children before being able to receive any significant benefits.

            5.         Whether a beneficiary should have an “incentive clause” where the trust would pay minimal benefits except to match W-2 or other professional or entrepreneurial earnings or pay an hourly rate based upon actual hours worked by the beneficiary in any notable endeavor.

            6.         Whether individuals who may have tendencies towards alcoholism, drug abuse, gambling problems, or other addictions should have separate guidelines and standards.

            7.         Whether any spouse or a long time spouse should have the ability to be:

                                                (a)       Added as a beneficiary after a certain number of years of consecutive marriage;

                                                (b)       To serve as a trustee for the benefit of descendants if that spouse will not be a beneficiary (or if he or she will).

            8.         Whether the beneficiary should have the power to appoint some portion of the assets upon death to a class of persons, or entities, which can include your descendants, or certain qualified charitable organizations.

            9.         Whether the beneficiary should have a power to appoint some portion of the assets upon death to a trust that could benefit the long term spouse and would then eventually be devised to the descendants upon his or her death, or upon his or her re-marriage.

            10.       Whether a beneficiary will be able to receive a percentage or other specified portion of the trust assets for use in business, or entrepreneurial endeavors if the Trustee deems appropriate.

            11.       Whether a Trust Protector Committee should be appointed, with the power to change the trust language or to direct the trustees as to certain matters or parameters.  This is also known as a “King Solomon Clause.”

THE TIMES THEY ARE A-CHANGIN’ – THE MOST IMPORTANT PROPOSED CHANGES TO FLORIDA ESTATE PLANNING LAW IN 2013

            In addition to Florida’s revised LLC Act Bill, several other bills that have been enrolled and are on their way to Governor Rick Scott will likely impact Florida estate planners and their clients. In order to save you the time, we reviewed the Florida Senate’s 2013 Summary of Legislation Passed to find the bills that are most likely to affect estate planners. Below are the Senate summaries of the engrossed bills we found most important, including Florida’s Revised LLC Act. If you want to review the 347 page document yourself, click here for a copy of the PDF.  Here are the Senate summaries on four bills you need to know about:

1. Senate Bill 492 – This Bill revises Florida’s Probate Code. If approved by Governor Scott, the Bill will take effect October 1, 2013. Here are the major changes according to the Florida Senate:

  • Retroactively eliminating a requirement that an estate file a tax return for an estate tax when no tax is due.
  • Reducing from 5 years to 2 years the time period in which intangible property held in a trust is presumed to be unclaimed property and payable to the Department of Financial Services.
  • Providing that a caveator is not required to serve notice on his or herself when he or she submits a petition for administration of an estate.
  • Making void, with certain exceptions, any gift received by a lawyer, or a relative of the lawyer, from a written instrument that the lawyer prepared.
  • Requiring that a clerk of court, upon receipt of a will, keep the will in its original form for 20 years.
  • Expanding the long-arm jurisdiction of Florida courts to adjudicate trust disputes.
  • Removing conflicts between the Florida Statutes and the Florida Rules of Civil Procedure pertaining to forum non conveniens.
  • Requiring that a trustee provide a trust accounting to beneficiaries at least once a year.

 Click here for a complete copy of the bill.

2. House Bill 841 – This Bill revises Florida’s Power of Attorney law. If approved by Governor Scott, the Bill will take effect immediately upon becoming law. Here are the major changes according to the Florida Senate:

  • Make provisions of the Act which apply to financial institutions expressly applicable to broker-dealers.
  • Specify that the laws governing powers of attorney do not apply to a power given to a transfer agent to facilitate a specific transfer of a financial instrument, a power authorizing a financial institution or broker-dealer to act as agent for the account owner in executing transfers of financial assets or a delegation of powers by a trustee.
  • Allow a notary public to sign the principal’s name on a power of attorney document if the principal is physically unable to sign.
  • Allow a third party to require that an original power of attorney be provided for recording in official records if the power of attorney is relied on to transfer real property.
  • Allow an agent with a power of attorney to delegate authority to a third person using a prescribed government form if the delegation is for a governmental purpose.
  • Provide a standard for a court to award attorney fees in litigation involving a power of attorney.
  • Allow a third party to require that an agent provide an affidavit stating whether the agent’s authority has been terminated by the filing of an action for dissolution of marriage of the agent and principal.
  • Clarify when a rejection of a power of attorney by a third party must be in writing.
  • Clarify that the default cap in existing law on the amount of gifts that an agent may give under a power of attorney applies to gifts given in a single a calendar year.

 Click here for a complete copy of the bill.

 3. House Bill 229 – This Bill revises Florida’s Land Trust law. If approved by Governor Scott, the Bill will take effect immediately upon becoming law. Here are the major changes according to the Florida Senate:

  • Clarifies the distinction between a land trust governed by s. 689.071, F.S., and other trusts governed by the Florida Trust Code.
  • Defines a land trust based on the functional scope of the land trustee’s duties, although the power to manage or dispose of property remains an essential element of a Florida land trust.
  • Relocates provisions of s. 689.071, F.S., to a newly-created section, s. 689.073, F.S.
  • These provisions generally state that purchasers and others can rely on a land trustee’s authority over property as described in a recorded instrument. These provisions will remain equally applicable to any recorded instrument, created before or after the effective date of the bill, which conveys title to property and the power to manage or dispose of the property.
  • Codifies a number of land trust practices and principles commonly used in Florida and Illinois which are derived from judicial precedents or treatises on land trusts.

 Click here for a complete copy of the bill.

4. Senate Bill 492 – This Bill revises Florida’s LLC Act. If approved by Governor Scott, the Bill will take effect January 1, 2014. Here are the major changes according to the Florida Senate:

  • Imposes an obligation directly on the members or managers of an LLC, as applicable, to correct information in articles of organization that becomes inaccurate.
  • Expands the list of nonwaivable default rules that cannot be superseded by the operating agreement of an LLC.
  • Authorizes an LLC to file a statement of authority, which provides constructive notice as to who can bind the LLC.
  • Modifies provisions addressing the LLC’s management structure. It removes the concept of a “managing member” who is elected from among the existing members. An LLC that was managed by a “managing member” is now considered to be member managed and the former managing member is not entitled to compensation unless agreed upon in an operating agreement.
  • Requires the unanimous vote of the members to amend the operating agreement or the articles of organization of a member-managed LLC.
  • Allows a member of an LLC to dissociate at any time, rightfully or wrongfully, by withdrawing by “express will.” If a member dissociates, the member loses the right to participate in the LLC’s management. Additionally, the bill provides 14 new causes for dissociation of a member other than bankruptcy or insolvency of a member, which already exist in current law.
  • Provides specific procedures for service of process on an LLC, including the method of delivery and waiver of a right to notice given by the bill or the articles of organization or the operating agreement of the LLC.
  • Allows a member of an LLC to maintain a derivative action to enforce a right of the LLC when, within a reasonable time, an action is not instituted after a member or manager makes a demand. If the demand would be futile or irreparable injury would result to the LLC by waiting for the members or managers to bring the action, the bill authorizes the member to begin a derivative action.
  • Permits interest exchanges in another business entity and allows non-U.S. entities to become LLCs in this state while continuing its existence in the foreign jurisdiction.

 Click here for a complete copy of the bill.

 APPLICABLE FEDERAL RATES

Please Click here to view a chart of this month’s, last month’s, and the preceding month’s Applicable Federal Rates, because for a sale you can use the lowest of the 3.

SEMINARS AND WEBINARS

SEMINARS:

HOT (NOTRE) DAME! DO NOT FORGET TO PLAN FOR AN EXCITING OCTOBER 16 – 19 WEEKEND, INCLUDING THE NOTRE DAME – USC GAME ON OCTOBER 19 AND FRIED CHICKEN FOR ALL THURSDAY REPORT READERS WHO ATTEND!

  • Wednesday, October 16 to Friday, October 18, 2013. Professor Jerry Hesch’s Notre Dame Tax Institute will once again emphasize the importance of income tax planning and implications in addition to estate, estate tax, and related concepts.  The Institute is held in South Bend, Indiana each fall. This year the dates are Wednesday, October 16 to Friday, October 18, 2013.

 Book now to get your football tickets to the Notre Dame-USC game on October 19.

 We welcome questions, comments and suggestions for the presentation that we are assisting Jerry in preparing and presenting – Interesting Interest Questions, Planning with Low Interest Loans, Self-Cancelling Installment Notes, Private Annuities, Defective Grantor Trusts, and Similar Issues That Arise in a Low Interest Rate Environment.

 WEBINARS:

  • WEDNESDAY, MAY 22, 2013 –Estate Trek – The Next Generation – If you have tried our software, or haven’t, you will want to join us for an upcoming webinar to show you what we have added to this software.

 Please join our beta testers and receive continuing education credit and to register for the webinar, please click here.

  • TUESDAY, MAY 28, 2013. Bloomberg/BNA Webinar: Valuable Planning for Snowbirds: Tips, Traps and Tactics for Advisors with Clients in Florida: Gassman Law Associates is happy to announce our upcoming webinar with BNA on May 28. You can register by clicking here.  Thursday Report Readers can use the top secret, very confidential promotional code “GASSMAN” to receive a $100 discount off the price of the webinar or the webinar and CD package. Please don’t tell anyone who attended Florida State University. Details for the webinar are as follows. We hope you can join us!

Most advisors with Florida clients are unaware of the myriad of unique rules and planning considerations that affect Florida estate, tax and business planning.   It is therefore vitally important for advisors to be aware of pertinent tricks and traps for the unwary.  Unlike some other states, Florida’s laws regarding limited liability companies, powers of attorney, taxation, homestead, creditor exemptions, trusts and estates, and documentary stamp taxes are not simply versions of a Uniform Act, and have been crafted by the Florida legislature to apply to various specific issues in an often counterintuitive manner.

BNA authors Alan S. Gassman and Christopher J. Denicolo have completed a 200 plus page easy to read outline with forms on major Florida law considerations and will they present the outline and PowerPoint slides to share techniques and opportunities, new practical ideas, and very useful client explanation charts, sample clauses, and checklists.

In 90 minutes, Gassman and Denicolo will cover:

  • Business and tax law anomalies and planning opportunities.
  • Creditor protection considerations and Florida’s statutory creditor exemptions.
  • Unique aspects of the Florida Trust and Probate Codes.
  • Florida medical practice rules and regulations.
  • Documentary stamp taxes, sales taxes, rent taxes, property taxes and how to avoid them.
  • Traps and tricks associated with Florida’s Homestead law, and Elective Share.
  • The new Florida Power of Attorney Act.
  • The current status of Florida charging order protection for limited partnerships and LLCs.

 Educational Objectives:

  • Become conversant with the primary rules, opportunities and limitations with respect to Florida creditor exemptions.
  • Discuss various key considerations with respect to the design and implementation of estate plans and Trusts in Florida.
  • Understand the scope and application of Florida’s tax system and primary tax avoidance techniques and issues.
  • Review unique aspects of Florida law, including its new Power of Attorney Act, Homestead laws, and medical practice rules and regulations.

 For details about each event, please visit us online at gassmanlawassociates.com/newsandevents.html

Alan S. Gassman, J.D., LL.M. is a practicing lawyer and author based in Clearwater, Florida. Mr. Gassman is the founder of the firm Gassman Law Associates, P.A., which focuses on the representation of physicians, high net worth individuals, and business owners in estate planning, taxation, and business and personal matters.  He is the lead author on Bloomberg BNA’s Estate Tax Planning in 2011 and 2012, Creditor Protection for Florida Physicians, Gassman & Markham on Florida and Federal Asset Protection Law, A Practical Guide to Kickback and Self-Referral Laws for Florida Physicians, The Florida Physician Advertising Handbook, and The Florida Guide to Prescription, Controlled Substance and Pain Medicine Laws, among others.  Mr. Gassman is a frequent speaker for continuing education programs, publishes regularly for Bloomberg BNA Tax & Accounting, Estates and Trusts Magazine, Estate Planning Magazine and Leimberg Estate Planning Network (LISI).  He holds a law degree and a Masters of Law degree (LL.M.) in Taxation from the University of Florida, and a business degree from Rollins College.  Mr. Gassman is board certified by the Florida Bar Association in Estate Planning and Trust Law, and has the Accredited Estate Planner designation for the National Association of Estate Planners & Councils.  Mr. Gassman’s email is Agassman@gassmanpa.com.

Thomas J. Ellwanger, J.D., is a lawyer practicing at the Clearwater, Florida firm of Gassman Law Associates, P.A.  Mr. Ellwanger received his B.A. in 1970 from Northwestern University and his J.D. with honors in 1974 from the University of Florida College of Law.  His practice areas include estate planning, trust and estate administration, personal tax planning and charitable tax planning.  Mr. Ellwanger is a member of the American College of Trusts and Estates Counsel (ACTEC). His email address is tom@gassmanpa.com.

Christopher Denicolo, J.D., LL.M. is a partner at the Clearwater, Florida law firm of Gassman Law Associates, P.A., where he practices in the areas of estate tax and trust planning, taxation, physician representation, and corporate and business law.  He has co-authored several handbooks that have been featured in Bloomberg BNA Tax & Accounting, Steve Leimberg’s Estate Planning and Asset Protection Planning Newsletters, and the Florida Bar Journal. He is also the author of the Federal Income Taxation of the Business Entity Chapter of the Florida Bar’s Florida Small Business Practice, Seventh Edition. Mr. Denicolo received his B.A. and B.S. degrees from Florida State University, his J.D. from Stetson University College of Law, and his LL.M. (Estate Planning) from the University of Miami.  He, Alan Gassman and Kenneth Crotty are the co-authors of the BNA book Estate Tax Planning in 2011 & 2012. His email address is Christopher@gassmanpa.com.

Kenneth J. Crotty, J.D., LL.M., is a partner at the Clearwater, Florida law firm of Gassman Law Associates, P.A., where he practices in the areas of estate tax and trust planning, taxation, physician representation, and corporate and business law. Mr. Crotty has co-authored several handbooks that have been published in BNA Tax & Accounting, Estate Planning, Steve Leimberg’s Estate Planning and Asset Protection Planning Newsletters, Estate Planning magazine, and Practical Tax Strategies.  Mr. Crotty is also the author of the Limited Liability Company Chapter of the Florida Bar’s Florida Small Business Practice, Seventh Edition. He, Alan Gassman and Christopher Denicolo are the co-authors of the BNA book Estate Tax Planning in 2011 & 2012. His email address is Ken@gassmanpa.com.

Thank you to our law clerks that assisted us in preparing this report:

Kacie Hohnadell is a third-year law student at Stetson University College of Law and is considering pursuing an LL.M. in taxation upon graduation. Kacie is also the Executive Editor of Stetson Law Review and is actively involved in Stetson’s chapter of the Student Animal Legal Defense Fund. In 2010, she received her B.A. from the University of Central Florida in Advertising and Public Relations with a minor in Marketing, and moved to St. Petersburg shortly after graduation to pursue her Juris Doctor. Her email address is Kacie@gassmanpa.com

Eric Moody graduated from Stetson University College of Law in December 2012 and was recently admitted to the Florida Bar. While at Stetson, Eric was an Articles and Symposia Editor for the Stetson Law Review. In 2009, Eric received a B.S. in Business Management from the University of South Florida. Eric’s email address is Eric@gassmanpa.com.

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