Tuesday, June 30, 2015

CHILD CUSTODY AND TEENAGERS

At what age does a teenager decide with which parent they will reside?

Matter of Cannella v Anthony 2015 NY Slip Op 02760 Decided on April 1, 2015 Appellate Division, Second Department

"......Furthermore, in determining custody, while the express wishes of children are not controlling, they are entitled to great weight, especially where their age and maturity would make their input particularly meaningful (see Matter of Samuel S. v Dayawathie R., 63 AD3d 746; Matter of Manfredo v Manfredo, 53 AD3d 498, 500; Matter of O'Connor v Dyer, 18 AD3d 757).
Here, there was evidence that the relationship between the mother and the 14-year-old child had deteriorated, and that the child wished to reside with the father. In addition, there was evidence that the child's school performance, including completion of homework, improved while [*2]he was with the father. Contrary to the mother's contention, the Family Court's determination awarding the father physical custody and sole custody with respect to all issues relating to education had a sound and substantial basis in the record (see Matter of Manfredo v Manfredo, 53 AD3d at 500)."

Monday, June 29, 2015

ON DEALING WITH CONTRACTORS (LICENSED OR NOT)

Kudos to Newsday for yesterday's story - but the bottom line is: maybe you should consult with a lawyer before you sign:

http://www.newsday.com/long-island/many-liers-pay-for-home-improvements-only-to-learn-costly-lesson-of-buyer-beware-1.10586461

Friday, June 26, 2015

OUTSTANDING STUDENT LOAN AND DIVORCE

Heydt-Benjamin v Heydt-Benjamin, 2015 NY Slip Op 02934, Decided on April 8, 2015 Appellate Division, Second Department:

"In addition, the court properly determined that the defendant alone was required to bear the obligation of repayment of the balance of her student loan because no benefit inured to the marriage (see Dashnaw v Dashnaw, 11 AD3d 732, 735; see also Mahoney-Buntzman v Buntzman, 12 NY3d 415, 422 n)."

Thursday, June 25, 2015

NEW ACRIS FORMS

From Title Guarantee:

"Effective May 18, 2015, the NYC-RPT form has been revised to include two additional GRANTOR and GRANTEE types:
 

1.    Single Member LLC 

2.    Multiple Member LLC

For any grantor and grantee that is a partnership or a multiple member LLC, the revised form will request the name and SSN/EIN for each general partner or member:
  • Provide the requested information for each general partner or member in a supporting document with a separate page for each partnership or LLC. Include the name of the partnership or LLC.
  • If the social security number or employer identification number is not provided, attach an affidavit attesting to the reasons the information is missing.
In an effort to provide up-to date information and services for all sellers and buyers of property in the state of New York, Title Guarantee, Inc. has attached the below link that gives you a copy of our ACRIS intake sheet. If you or your client is in need of ACRIS documents for real estate transactions, please fill out the attached form and email it to docs@titleguarantee.com

Click Here to View New ACRIS Prep Form

If you have any questions about ACRIS please give me a call.  I stand ready to help you in any way that I can. 

Sincerely,

James Gavrity
Title Guarantee, Inc.
jgavrity@titleguarantee.com
212-776-9200"

Tuesday, June 23, 2015

TO HELP PREVENT MORTGAGE FORECLOSURE SCAMS

Yesterday, a new statewide education campaign to help New Yorkers spot, avoid, and report foreclosure rescue scams was announced by New York Attorney General Eric Schneiderman.

The scams can take many different forms. If you think you may have been affected by one of these scams, visit AGScamHelp.com, or call the Homeowner Protection Program hotline at 855-466-3456.

Monday, June 22, 2015

WHEN NEIGHBORS FEUD

Emotions run high in certain disputes. Of course, matrimonial actions involve highly charged issues but neighbor disputes can also get into the thick of it.

A little research into the story in today's Newsday regarding the Southampton village town judge and her neighbor revealed this article:

http://www.27east.com/news/article.cfm/Southampton-Village-Surrounding-Areas/109589/Neighbor-Slaps-Southampton-Town-Justice-With-Defamation-Suit-Over-Remarks-At-Village-Meeting

Thursday, June 18, 2015

MOLST

Estate planning may also include a discussion of Medical Orders for Life-Sustaining Treatment (MOLST).

They are fully discussed at https://www.health.ny.gov/professionals/patients/patient_rights/molst/

There is now a web based application at http://www.compassionandsupport.org/index.php/for_professionals/molst_training_center/emolst

Wednesday, June 17, 2015

FREE SENIOR LEGAL CLINIC TODAY AT NASSAU COUNTY BAR ASSOCIATION

The next Senior Clinic is scheduled for today 9:30-11am at the Nassau County Bar Association, 15th & West Streets, Mineola, NY 11501.

I will be a volunteer lawyer.

Tuesday, June 16, 2015

ON NEW YORK RISING

The State Legislature gave final passage Monday to a bill that would require the Cuomo administration to report quarterly on unresolved cases and unpaid disaster claims.

In the memo to BILL NO A07204A ( SAME AS S04694-A):

"As of October 2014, it was reported that repairs were complete for
only 2,000 of the 8,896 Long Island homes that were approved for aid
by NY Rising. More than 5,000 households were still awaiting funding
assistance eligibility determinations. Since NY Rising was formed,
there have been countless reports from the frustrated people of Long
Island of an overly complex and cumbersome process to apply for and
obtain the funding required to rebuild or rehabilitate their homes, to
participate in the acquisition and buy-out programs, and to navigate
the archaic system, in order to restart their lives."

Monday, June 15, 2015

SANDY, INSURANCE, BAD FAITH, LEGAL FEES

In today's Newsday, a "top story" discusses the New York State insurance law, which largely bars policyholders from collecting legal fees when suing insurers, and the argument that such a provision allows companies to underpay claims with little fear of being challenged in court.

The New York Law Journal recently published an article on this in "Keeping the Faith in Insurance Bad Faith" by Eric Dinnocenzo:

http://www.newyorklawjournal.com/id=1202728820876/Keeping-the-Faith-in-Insurance-Bad-Faith?slreturn=20150515065251

Friday, June 12, 2015

SOCIAL SECURITY AND DIVORCE

If you're divorced, it's possible to claim Social Security spousal and survivor benefits from your ex-spouse.

For more information, see https://www.socialsecurity.gov/planners/retire/yourdivspouse.html

Wednesday, June 10, 2015

ON PRENUPITAL AGREEMENTS

Arlene G. Dubin and Carole M. Bass provide "Ten Tips for Estate Planners Who Draft Prenuptial Agreements" in their article in the June 2015 issue of Estate Planning Magazine.
 

Tuesday, June 9, 2015

STEP PARENTS AND CHILD SUPPORT

A step parent can be responsible for child support under the Family Court Act and the Social Services Law.

Section 415 of the Family Court Act which provides that a spouse or parent "of a recipient of public   assistance or care or of a person liable to become in need thereof or of   a patient in an institution in the department of mental hygiene,  if  of   sufficient  ability,  is  responsible  for the support of such person or   patient, provided that a  parent  shall  be  responsible  only  for  the  support  of  his  child  or  children  who  have not attained the age of twenty-one years."

The last sentence of this statue states: "Step-parents  shall  in  like  manner  be responsible for the support of children under the age of twenty-one years."

See Martel v Southampton Hosp. 2013 NY Slip Op 33096(U). November 29, 2013. Supreme Court, Suffolk County. Docket Number: 07-24175. Judge: Peter H. Mayer:
"Family Court Act § 415 and Social Services Law § 101 (1), each provide that the spouse or parent of a recipient of public assistance or a person liable to become in need thereof, if of sufficient ability, is responsible for the support of such person or child under age 21 years. Both state that stepparents shall in like manner be responsible for the support of children under the age of 21 years. The law imposes an obligation to support a stepchild on a husband. That obligation continues as long as the relationship exists between the stepfather and mother. It ceases when that relationship is terminated and the erstwhile spouse of the child's mother is no longer her husband. It continues only as long as he is the stepfather (Matter of Marie Ewell v Sisson, 81 Misc2d 1070, 367 NYS2d 711 [Fam Ct, Yates County 1975]). Thus, a relationship between a stepfather and stepchild ends when the parties' divorce becomes final (Peake v Peake, 205 Misc 393, 138 NYS2d 631 [Dom Rel Ct, Kings County 1954]; Kaiser v Kaiser, 93 Misc2d 36, 402 NYS2d [1978]).

In the absence of a clear statutory provision continuing the obligation of a stepparent after the death of either party to the marriage, the relationship and obligation on the part of the survivor terminates (Erie County Board of Social Welfare v Schneider, 6 Misc2d 374, 163 NYS2d 184 [Children's Ct, Erie County 1957]). In Slockhowsky v Lavine, 73 Misc2d 563, 342 NYS2d 525 [Sup Ct, Nassau County 1973], the court stated that the "general obligation of support imposed upon a natural or adoptive father does not turn on a child's dependence upon public assistance, and, indeed, exists regardless of the child's own resources and those of his mother. Moreover, unlike the stepparent liability, a natural father must support his child even after the death or divorce of the natural mother (citation omitted). The provision for the support of a child is certainly on a broader basis and has deeper roots than the provision for support of stepchildren." Once a marriage dissolves, be it by divorce, death, or for any other reason whatsoever, a stepparent relationship ceases (Decker v Grant Seamon, 18 Misc3d 1101A, 856 NYS2d 23 [Fam Ct, Otsego County 2007, citing Rita F. v Neil F., 12 Misc3d 894, 819 NYS2d 439 [Fam Ct, New York County 2006])."


Monday, June 8, 2015

FORECLOUSRE/SANDY CLINIC TODAY AT NCBA

I will be volunteering today, Monday, June 8, at the Nassau County Bar Association's free clinic for Mortgage Foreclosure, Bankruptcy and Superstorm Sandy issues. 
 
For more information, contact Nassau County Bar Association, 15th and West Streets, Mineola, NY 11501 at (516) 747-4070.

Thursday, June 4, 2015

LAWYER DEMOGRAPHICS

According to the American Bar Association (ABA), in the United States there are 1,281,432 licensed lawyers.

Legal profession statistics from the ABA can be viewed at this link:

http://www.americanbar.org/resources_for_lawyers/profession_statistics.html

Wednesday, June 3, 2015

YOU CAN RETRIEVE A LETTER

Perhaps you wrote something that you shouldn't have or perhaps you slipped the wrong item into the wrong envelope.  You cannot recall email but you can try with regular mail.

Utilize PS Form 1509, Sender’s Request for USPS Package Intercept Service - more information can be found here:

http://about.usps.com/postal-bulletin/2012/pb22329/html/updt_005.htm

Tuesday, June 2, 2015

SCOTUS - BANKRUPTCY AND SECOND MORTGAGES

Underwater homeowners who file for Chapter 7 bankruptcy protection are still on the hook for secondary loans tied to their properties, the Supreme Court said Monday.

See http://www.marketwatch.com/story/supreme-court-hands-defeat-to-struggling-homeowners-2015-06-01

Monday, June 1, 2015

SANDY CLAIMS REVIEW

The Federal Emergency Management Agency’s (FEMA) National Flood Insurance Program (NFIP) has begun a review of claims filed by policyholders affected by Hurricane Sandy. The review is part of a broad process to reform NFIP claims and appeals procedures.

For more information, see https://www.fema.gov/hurricane-sandy-national-flood-insurance-program-claims-review