Browsed by
Month: May 2015

Adopting an Orphan Not the Best Way to Help Nepal Quake Victims

Adopting an Orphan Not the Best Way to Help Nepal Quake Victims

An estimated 4,000-plus children were left orphaned after the series of deadly quakes that hit the country of Nepal — and a number of well-meaning Americans (including Angelina Jolie, if you believe the rumors) are seeking to adopt them. There’s just one problem. No, there are at least five problems. 1) Figuring out which children are truly orphans is going to take some time. As U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) recently cautioned, “It is not uncommon in an emergency for children to…

Read More Read More

Victory for Chapter 13 Bankruptcy Filers Who Convert to Chapter 7

Victory for Chapter 13 Bankruptcy Filers Who Convert to Chapter 7

In a victory for bankruptcy filers, yesterday, the U.S. Supreme Court resolved a split among the Courts of Appeal in Harris v. Viegelahn, 575 U.S. __ (2015). The ruling affects people who file for Chapter 13 bankruptcy and then, before completing the Chapter 13 plan, convert the case to a Chapter 7 bankruptcy. The Supreme Court said that if the bankruptcy trustee has plan funds on the date of conversion that he or she has not yet distributed to creditors,…

Read More Read More

USEFUL IRS INFO FOR THOSE IN THE MILITARY

USEFUL IRS INFO FOR THOSE IN THE MILITARY

In recognition of National Military Appreciation Month, IRS has recently updated its “Armed Forces Tax Guide” (Publication 3) which contains good information and important reminders of some tax benefits unique to members of the military, including: ~Combat pay – partly or totally tax free ~Moving expenses – deduction available for eligible items ~Tax return due date – service members stationed abroad have until June 15 to file, and those in a combat zone have even longer – typically up to…

Read More Read More

Laptop Searches at Airports: Another Court Weighs In

Laptop Searches at Airports: Another Court Weighs In

Korean businessman Jae Shik Kim was ready to board a flight from Los Angeles International Airport to South Korea. But a special agent of the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) searched the luggage Kim had checked. (The agent didn’t find anything of particular note.) Then, on the jetway between the gate and the airplane, the agent stopped Kim, who was boarding. The agent seized Kim’s laptop “pursuant to a border search,” then left the traveler to depart for his destination….

Read More Read More

IRS WARNING ABOUT FAKE CHARITIES

IRS WARNING ABOUT FAKE CHARITIES

Included on IRS’ famous annual “Dirty Dozen” tax scams list for 2015 is a warning about groups masquerading as charitable organizations to attract donations from unsuspecting contributors. IRS goes on to advise potential charitable donors to: ~Be wary of charities with names that are similar to familiar or nationally known organizations. Check the IRS list (www.irs.gov) for inclusion in the listing of legitimate charities. ~Not reveal personal financial information, such as your Social Security number to a charitable solicitor. ~Not…

Read More Read More