Sunday, 23 September 2018

Misconceptions of Divorce

Misconceptions of Divorce

For as many misconceptions as people have about marriage, there are just as many that exist about divorce. Many people hold on to these myths and falsehoods very closely, making it difficult to make the decision to end what most would consider a bad relationship.

The following are just a few of the most common misconceptions about divorce:

  • You’ll never be able to meet another person right for you: Contrary to what’s frequently displayed in movies and television, there’s no “one perfect person” or “soul mate” for everyone. No matter who you are or how old you are, you still have a good chance of meeting someone who’s right for you. Your current marriage was not your only chance at finding lasting love.
  • Divorce is a sign of failure: If anything, knowing when to leave a bad relationship is incredibly courageous and admirable. It would be unhealthy for you, your spouse and your children to remain in a relationship that no longer has any positives.
  • Divorce is immoral: Some people like to portray divorcees as being less ethical than people who stay in their marriages forever. Others associate divorce with sexual promiscuity. The fact is that divorce is common, and people from all backgrounds and walks of life go through the process. You should never allow yourself to be shamed into doing something that is unhealthy or simply wrong for your life and your situation.
  • Your children will never recover: There is certainly no getting around the fact that divorce will be difficult on your children, at least at first. However, with hard work, support and enough love, your children will recover just as you will over time.

No-Fault vs. Grounds-Based Divorce in Utah

Utah has adopted a no-fault divorce clause. The revised law dictates one partner must state under oath the marriage relationship has irretrievably broken down for at least six months.

From that sworn oath flows settlement of issues like child custody, payment of support, and equitable distribution of marital property.

The intent of no-fault divorce is to provide an easier route to divorce and reduce the financial drain of divorce trials. Has the new law lessened acrimony associated with divorce, or did it simply widen the battlefield for unhappy spouses?

The jury is out on both questions.

After an initial lull, divorce filings have again increased. Court dockets are backlogged, and challenges to the no-fault law continue. In addressing the subjective nature of irrevocable breakdown, a judge has opined that the Legislature did not intend nor is there a defense to Domestic Relations Laws.

While the no-fault ground has come under fire, our family law practice has successfully addressed confused formulas for fixing temporary maintenance and pressed cases where the greater wage earner does not end up being the monied spouse.

These challenges continue the tradition of protracted divorce. And while a no-fault filing sets aside blame, a judge may consider any other factor relevant to each action—including marital fault.

If misconduct precipitated your marriage breakup, tell your attorney. Fault or no-fault, by applying our legal prowess and strategic methods, we can work to achieve the result you need.

An Attorney Is a Wise Choice for Divorce and Family Court Issues

When you and your spouse no longer want to live together as husband and wife, if you cannot agree on the terms of your divorce, you will wind up in family court. Skilled divorce lawyers who practice in family court on a daily basis are a wise choice to represent you if you find yourself in need of an attorney in any type of family court dispute or matter.

How we can assist you in family court?

Some reasons an attorney is a wise choice:

  • Family law is complicated: Experienced divorce attorneys can explain all aspects of Utah family law that apply to your situation in plain English. Your lawyer will know the legal procedures that govern your case and be able to sensitively handle your matter while protecting your rights.
  • An experienced attorney understands the issues. By choosing an attorney with solid experience in family and divorce law, you put yourself in the best position to bring your matter to closure in a timely fashion.
  • An attorney can fight aggressively for your rights: Experienced divorce lawyers know how to strategize, negotiate and argue cases for their clients.

Free Consultation with Divorce Lawyer in Utah

If you have a question about divorce law or if you need to start or defend against a divorce case in Utah call Ascent Law at (801) 676-5506. We will fight for you.

Michael R. Anderson, JD

Ascent Law LLC
8833 S. Redwood Road, Suite C
West Jordan, Utah
84088 United States

Telephone: (801) 676-5506

SEC Names Deputy Chief Accountant

SEC Names Deputy Chief Accountant

The Securities and Exchange Commission today announced the appointment of Sagar S. Teotia as a Deputy Chief Accountant in the agency’s Office of the Chief Accountant.

As Deputy Chief Accountant, Mr. Teotia will lead the activities of the office’s accounting group, which includes understanding investor and other perspectives on accounting matters and consulting with public companies, auditors, and divisions and offices within the SEC, on the application of accounting standards and financial disclosure requirements. Mr. Teotia will also assist the office in discharging the Commission’s oversight of standard setting bodies such as the Financial Accounting Standards Board.

Mr. Teotia previously served in the office as a professional accounting fellow from 2009 to 2011. During his time as a fellow he followed the activities of professional accounting standard-setting bodies, both within the United States and internationally.

“I am very pleased that Sagar has agreed to return to the Office of the Chief Accountant to oversee the accounting group,” said SEC Chief Accountant Wesley Bricker. “Sagar’s prior experience as an SEC accounting fellow as well as his expertise and wealth of experience in public accounting will provide critical service to investors, companies and the Commission.”

“I am honored to have this opportunity to return to work at the Commission and serve with the talented and highly dedicated team in the Office of the Chief Accountant on behalf of investors,” said Mr. Teotia.

Mr. Teotia joins the SEC with approximately 18 years of professional experience that includes expertise in regulatory matters, technical accounting, and mergers and acquisitions. He joins the SEC from Deloitte & Touche LLP’s National Office Accounting Consultation Group in Utah, where he was a partner.

Mr. Teotia’s work has included a focus on financial instruments, business combinations, and compensation issues, including stock compensation and pension matters. He has also worked on matters regarding the application of U.S. Generally Accepted Accounting Principles and International Financial Reporting Standards.

Mr. Teotia received an accounting degree from the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign. He is licensed to practice as a certified public accountant in Illinois.

SEC HALTS FRAUD TARGETING SENIORS

As a securities lawyer, it’s fun to see the changes that are announced from time to time by the SEC. For example, they recently announced an emergency asset freeze and temporary restraining order against a Utah-based investment adviser and his financial management company accused of scamming elderly investors out of millions of dollars.

The SEC alleges that Daniel H. Glick and his unregistered investment advisory firm Financial Management Strategies (FMS) provided clients with false account statements to hide Glick’s use of client funds to pay personal and business expenses, purchase a Mercedes-Benz, and pay off loans and debts among other misuses.

According to the SEC’s complaint, Glick was barred by FINRA in 2014 and had his Certified Financial Planner designation and Certified Public Accountant license revoked for conduct unrelated to today’s SEC charges.

“As alleged in our complaint, Daniel Glick raised millions of dollars from elderly clients by claiming that he would pay their bills, handle their taxes, and invest on their behalf.  In reality, Daniel Glick used much of their money to do what was best for Daniel Glick,” said David Glockner.

The SEC’s complaint also names Glick Accounting Services, Glick’s business partner David B. Slagter, and Glick’s business acquaintance Edward H. Forte as relief defendants for the purposes of recovering client funds that Glick transferred or paid them in the form of advances or loans.

The court issued a temporary restraining order against Glick and FMS at the SEC’s request, and issued an order freezing the assets of Glick, FMS, and Glick Accounting Services.

The SEC encourages investors to check the background of anyone offering to sell them investments.

SEC HALTS BOILER ROOM SCHEME INVOLVING STATE LOTTERY TICKETS

The Securities and Exchange Commission today announced charges against a Utah-based company, its CEO, and its top sales agent accused of conducting a boiler room scheme that solicits investments in a business purportedly facilitating online and cell phone sales of lottery tickets in various states.

The SEC has obtained an emergency court order freezing the assets of LottoNet Operating Corp., David Gray, and Joseph A. Vitale. The SEC’s complaint alleges that they misrepresented to investors that their money would be used to develop and market LottoNet and that sales agents did not receive commissions. At least 35 percent of investor proceeds were allegedly paid to boiler room sales agents in the form of commissions, and LottoNet allegedly siphoned investor funds for personal spending on clothing, wedding-related expenses, and strip clubs.

According to the SEC’s complaint, which was unsealed in federal court today, among the pitches used in sales agent scripts prepared for cold calls to investors was “you’re looking at a monthly dividend payout of $8,500 every month” on a $25,000 investment if LottoNet reaches 1 percent market share. The scripts also allegedly touted the purported safety of the investment, noting a 60 percent return as a “worst case” scenario if the company was ever sold. The SEC alleges that while LottoNet has raised a total of approximately $4.8 million from investors, the company had only paid $10,525.43 in investment returns to investors through the end of February. Sales agents allegedly have been paid more than $1.1 million out of investor funds.

The SEC’s complaint further alleges that Vitale, who personally raised at least $1.4 million from investors, used the alias Donovan Kelly in an apparent attempt to hide from investors that he is permanently barred by the Financial Industry Regulatory Authority (FINRA).

“As alleged in our complaint, little did investors know they were being duped with a script based on misrepresentations while investor funds were being spent in strip clubs,” said Eric I. Bustillo.

TELECOM EXECUTIVES AGREE TO PAY PENALTIES FOR FCPA VIOLATIONS

The Securities and Exchange Commission today announced that two former executives at Hungarian-based telecommunications company Magyar Telekom have agreed to pay financial penalties and accept officer-and-director bars to settle a previously-filed SEC case alleging they violated the Foreign Corrupt Practices Act (FCPA).

Magyar Telekom paid a $95 million penalty in December 2011 to settle parallel civil and criminal charges that the company bribed officials in Macedonia and Montenegro to win business and shut out competition in the telecommunications industry says local business lawyers.  The SEC’s complaint also charged the company’s former CEO Elek Straub and former chief strategy officer Andras Balogh with orchestrating the use of sham contracts to funnel millions of dollars in corrupt payments.  The two executives were set to stand trial this month.

Straub has agreed to pay a $250,000 penalty and Balogh has agreed to pay a $150,000 penalty.  Both executives agreed to a five-year bar from serving as an officer or director of any SEC-registered public company.  The settlements are subject to court approval.

“The executives in this case were charged with spearheading secret agreements with a prime minister and others to block out telecom competitors,” said Stephanie Avakian, Acting Director of the SEC’s Division of Enforcement.  “We persevered in order to hold these overseas executives culpable for corrupting a company that traded in the U.S. market.”

A third Magyar Telekom executive charged in the SEC’s complaint, former director of business development and acquisitions Tamas Morvai, agreed to a settlement that was approved by the court in February requiring him to pay a $60,000 penalty for falsifying the company’s books and records in connection with the bribery scheme.

Free Initial Consultation with SEC Lawyer in Utah

When you need help from a Utah SEC Lawyer, call Ascent Law for your free consultation (801) 676-5506. We want to help you.

Michael R. Anderson, JD

Ascent Law LLC
8833 S. Redwood Road, Suite C
West Jordan, Utah
84088 United States

Telephone: (801) 676-5506

Saturday, 22 September 2018

Divorce Terms to Know

Divorce Terms to Know

As you go through a divorce, there’s a good chance you will come across some legal terminology with which you’re unfamiliar. The following are a few common examples:

  • Alternative dispute resolution (ADR): A settlement process that occurs out of court, whether it’s through negotiations, mediation or arbitration. It is typically used to help divorcing couples avoid a full trial.
  • Annulment: A legal judgment that the “marriage” was never actually valid for specific circumstances in your relationship.
  • COBRA: The Consolidated Omnibus Budget Reconciliation Act allows people to continue being covered under their ex’s health insurance even after they are divorced.
  • Cohabitation: Unmarried partners living together as though they are married.
  • Discovery: The process in which each party gathers information to use to their advantage during divorce proceedings.
  • Divorce decree: The final judgment or document that contains your legally binding divorce agreement.
  • Equitable: An “equitable” distribution of property is all about what’s fair, not necessary what’s equal.
  • Joint property: Property you and your spouse accrued during the course of your marriage. This property is subject to the asset division process.
  • Prenuptial agreement: A written contract entered into before marriage that could have an impact on all of the divorce processes affecting your case.

How Long Must I Pay Child Support?

In Utah State, generally, a child must be supported until the age of 21. However, there are a number of exceptions to this rule. When a child has not reached 21, but is supporting himself or herself, or is in the military or has married, the obligation to pay child support ends. Another situation that may merit the cessation of child support involves children between 17 and 21 who are on their own and not under the control of parents.

Once child support is ordered, the paying parent must continue to make payments for as long as the order is in effect. It is important to note that any agreement that the spouses come to either increasing or decreasing the amount of support without the approval of the court is not enforceable. This means that if you and your spouse verbally decide to lower the amount you pay, and at some point your spouse decides to file for the amount originally ordered, the court can order you to pay the original amount ordered, in spite of your verbal agreement to pay less.

Similarly, if you voluntarily decide to pay more, and then drop back to the original support amount, your spouse needs to seek court approval of the increased amount to guarantee receipt of that amount. Support orders can be modified due to changes in circumstances so do not hesitate to seek out the advice of a lawyer.

Some Tips to Help You Deal with the Emotional Aspects of Divorce

Divorce isn’t easy on anyone, and you may be feeling many different emotions as you work through the process. There will be good days and bad, and sometimes it may feel like it will be impossible for you to move on.

However, if you take some time to reflect, you will likely find you are indeed capable of starting a new life and having a positive future. Here are a few tips to help manage the emotions of getting divorced:

  • Don’t rush into a new relationship: It’s natural to want to try to find someone new who you can take comfort in after your marriage ends. But you need to take some time to yourself so that you can fully understand what you need, rather than leaning on a replacement or a rebound.
  • Take time to grieve: Despite what you may think, it is difficult to lose the person who you had once trusted with everything — even if your relationship wasn’t always good. It can feel like you are suddenly without a confidant. It is natural and necessary to let yourself grieve for the loss of this relationship. Being honest about it and embracing your emotions is an important step to take.
  • Get therapy if needed: You might come out of a divorce feeling like you’ll never be able to trust anyone again. If this is the case, consider visiting with a therapist or support group. This will allow you the opportunity to talk about your feelings and find some inner peace.
  • Do what you need to for your happiness: Take up new (or old) hobbies. Indulge yourself every now and then. Simply put, do what makes you happy. You deserve a chance to feel good. This isn’t to say you should just abandon responsibilities and live an irresponsible, but you shouldn’t feel guilty about treating yourself every once in a while.

Free Consultation with Divorce Lawyer in Utah

If you have a question about divorce law or if you need to start or defend against a divorce case in Utah call Ascent Law at (801) 676-5506. We will fight for you.

Michael R. Anderson, JD

Ascent Law LLC
8833 S. Redwood Road, Suite C
West Jordan, Utah
84088 United States

Telephone: (801) 676-5506

Trial Lawyers

Trial Lawyers

What are the rest of the lawyers going to do? What about the other 95 percent of trial lawyers who are not so great and not such good lawyers? How is a lawyer who is not at the top going to feed his family? His chances of getting your case against Exxon-Mobil are about the same as hitting the lottery. Many of my friends are personal injury attorneys and as a
trial lawyer myself, I think I understand that they think and dream about the one good case that will earn them enough to be on easy street. But the one good case never seems to come. Instead, most lawyers make a living by looking for somebody to sue and filing bad cases with bad facts. As long as a lawyer can find a potential defendant with even modest assets, he will attempt to make his case. If he doesn’t have a good case, he has to go with what he has. That’s how he makes a living.

The lawyer is willing to gamble that by filing a case he will be able to squeeze a settlement or play “lawsuit roulette” with the jury. Just like the population in general, from whom they are drawn, jurors can be confused and misled by emotional and irrational arguments. Experiments in human behavior show that most of the time individuals are unable to distinguish the truth from a lie. When asked to distinguish truthful from untruthful testimony based upon the demeanor and expression of the witness, in a majority of cases, the subjects in the experiment incorrectly identified the lie as the truth and the truth as the lie. The conclusion of the study has frightening implications. Jurors are more likely to believe a witness who is lying than one who is telling the truth.

This phenomenon has been understood and exploited for years by political leaders and others with a message to sell. A lie that is repeated forcefully and with conviction becomes accepted as truth. Think of the Nazi propagandists and the McCarthy type demagogues who convinced millions of people of the “truth” of their cause. More recently, public hysteria over so called “death panels” illustrates the relative ease with which fear and irrationality can be heightened and manipulated by skilled politicians to influence the outcome of the public agenda. Advertising messages repeated often enough are believed, regardless of the merits of the product and despite overwhelming evidence to the contrary. That’s the foundation of the advertising industry and is the basis on which political leaders and corporate interests present their programs.

In the same manner, a lawyer attempts to “sell” his case to the jury. Facts are distorted. Lies, half-truths, and perjured testimony are zealously advanced on behalf of the “injured” plaintiff. If things go right and the lawyer gets lucky or knows what he is doing, the jury will reward these efforts with a judgment for several hundred thousand or maybe a few million dollars. Every day in court a sympathetic plaintiff prevails against a wealthy or comparatively wealthy defendant— even in those cases which appear to be absurd, illogical, and utterly without merit.

Any lawyer who is still in business after a few years of practice has learned that the unpredictability of human behavior can be used to his advantage. The uncertainty of the outcome creates a potential risk of loss for even the most “innocent” defendant. Lawyers know that for most people the risk of financial loss also creates a highly uncomfortable level of emotional strain. If you have ever been sued—no matter what the cause—you understand that the unpredictability of the result and the possibility of economic loss can generate a severe degree of stress and emotional charge.

Free Initial Consultation with Trial Lawyers in Utah

It’s not a matter of if, it’s a matter of when. Legal problems come to everyone. Whether it’s your son who gets in a car wreck, your uncle who loses his job and needs to file for bankruptcy, your sister’s brother who’s getting divorced, or a grandparent that passes away without a will -all of us have legal issues and questions that arise. So when you have a law question, call Ascent Law for your free consultation (801) 676-5506. We want to help you!

Michael R. Anderson, JD

Ascent Law LLC
8833 S. Redwood Road, Suite C
West Jordan, Utah
84088 United States

Telephone: (801) 676-5506

Friday, 21 September 2018

Steps to Take Before Separating from Your Spouse

Steps to Take Before Separating from Your Spouse

It may be tempting to rush into a separation when you feel your marriage is not going well. However, there are a few steps you should take before the separation to ensure you protect your own interests.

Here are a few of those steps:

  • Get your papers in order. Examples of key documents include tax returns, mortgages, titles, wills, estate planning documents, credit card and bank account information, stocks and bonds, loans and any other agreements or contracts you have. These papers are important to have on hand anyway, but are especially vital in situations when you’re considering separation or divorce.
  • Get financially prepared. Make sure you are going to be able to financially handle your separation. Try budgeting out your expenses as though you would be living by yourself, without your spouse’s income. This will give you a good idea of the type of financial burden you would be experiencing. You should also keep in mind the debts you and your spouse have incurred. You are still responsible for paying at least a portion of those debts, even if you are separated or divorced.
  • Protect your valuables. Anything that’s valuable or meaningful to you should be kept safe so you can take it with you if you decide to leave. This could include jewelry, precious metals, furniture, electronics, old photographs, collections and other memorabilia. This will ensure these items don’t get lost in the shuffle if a divorce becomes necessary.
  • Check your credit. Get a credit report and make sure you are in a sound credit situation. You may need to apply for a loan for a home or a vehicle after your separation or divorce. You should close any joint accounts you have and open accounts in your own name so that you alone are in charge of your credit.

It Is 10:00 p.m. — Do You Know Where Your Spouse Is?

Your spouse leaves the room each time the cell phone rings, and it rings a lot more lately. She works late a couple of times a week. Or, he takes care of the bills now, when you used to do them together. Another business trip?

Although Utah now has no-fault divorce, fault such as adultery can be used to influence settlement negotiations, or it can be considered by the court when making property or custodial decisions.

Spouses suspicious of their partners have never had it easier — whether by making use of devices like global positioning satellite (GPS) devices placed inside the family car, or snooping through electronic communications on cell phones, computers and Facebook.

The problem with looking for evidence of infidelity is the possibility of finding what you were looking for. Before you buy a GPS unit for this purpose, and before you invade the presumed privacy of your partner’s electronic files — think about what you will do if your gut instinct proves true. The suspicion alone is evidence that speaks to the condition of your marital relationship.

Free Consultation with Divorce Lawyer in Utah

If you have a question about divorce law or if you need to start or defend against a divorce case in Utah call Ascent Law at (801) 676-5506. We will fight for you.

Michael R. Anderson, JD

Ascent Law LLC
8833 S. Redwood Road, Suite C
West Jordan, Utah
84088 United States

Telephone: (801) 676-5506

Fighting the Lure of Tax Havens

Fighting the Lure of Tax Havens

Naturally enough the high tax countries are not happy to see resources and tax money flow out of the country. As a tax attorney, I can tell you that there are huge government bureaucracies to maintain, expensive new weapon systems to be developed, and social programs to be financed. The top priority of every government is generating funds to carry out its policies. Every high tax country, with greater or lesser degrees of success, attempts to thwart the powerful and seductive appeal of the tax havens.

At least for now, the tax havens appear to be winning the war for the hearts and the wallets of the citizens of the world. The difficulty faced by the high tax forces is that it is impossible to physically block the flow of funds from one country to another. Money moves electronically, at the speed of light, from bank to bank. Every hour of every day trillions of dollars and francs and yen are shifted instantaneously between banks in every part of the world. Governments themselves use these electronic transfer systems to make purchases, pay debts, and settle accounts between each other. Shutting down this free flow of money around the world would seriously impair international commerce and economic life as it exists today.

The best that the high tax country can do is attempt to gather information from within its banking system about capital movements by individuals. This is not an easy task. On its face, a legitimate business transfer to an overseas account looks no different than a tax motivated transfer. For example, bank records in the home country may reveal that money was transferred from a domestic bank to a bank in Luxembourg. Whether this transaction was a normal business transaction or part of a scheme to avoid taxes cannot be determined from the record of the transaction itself.

More information is needed to determine the true character of the transfer. Officials in the home country can question the individual, but it is unlikely that this would be productive. What they would like to do is trace the money to see whether its uses are legitimate and whether the proper taxes are paid to the home country.

But now the tax haven country stands up to do its job. Officials in the home country as well as international tax attorneys say that they’ll be denied access to information about the funds and their recipient. Secrecy laws prevent disclosure of account information by the recipient bank. Home country tax officials must attempt to develop their case without the cooperation of the tax haven authorities. Sometimes the funds are moved rapidly through a series of banks in different jurisdictions, but this is only necessary when there is some doubt about security at the initial recipient bank.

Nations can and do make treaties with each other to exchange information, assist each other in law enforcement, and provide for convenient tax administration. But these treaties are generally between high tax countries with similar economic interests. The United States has an extensive network of treaties with the western European countries allowing for a mutual enforcement of judgments, minimal trade restrictions, and a comprehensive tax program for international transactions. The high tax countries have a mutual interest in cooperating with each other.

Tax haven countries, as a rule, do not enter into treaties which would impact their special services. The greater the level of cooperation with the high tax countries, the greater the impairment of its usefulness as a tax secrecy haven. Even when there is agreement for some form of mutual assistance, disclosure of information is limited to severe and enumerated criminal offenses. Tax violations are not included in this category.

The high tax countries are frustrated by their inability to restrict the natural flow of currency and tax dollars from high to low tax jurisdictions. This frustration inevitably leads to greater restrictions on freedom and privacy. Governments always want more disclosure and more reports about financial transactions to bolster their investigative powers. Sometimes the information which the government seeks is intended to protect legitimate interests in tax revenue and currency value. But too often, throughout history, we have seen that the government’s purpose in gathering information is to increase political power, carry out surveillance of political enemies, suppress dissent, or conduct any number of abusive activities against its citizens.

Governments want information about their citizens, and citizens want privacy and protection from the exercise of any government authority which threatens their financial security and accumulated wealth. The offshore havens satisfy the demand for financial privacy and security with a powerful arsenal of products designed to accomplish these specific results.

Free Consultation with a Utah Tax Attorney

If you are here, you probably have a tax law issue you need help with, call Ascent Law for your free tax law consultation (801) 676-5506. We want to help you.

Michael R. Anderson, JD

Ascent Law LLC
8833 S. Redwood Road, Suite C
West Jordan, Utah
84088 United States

Telephone: (801) 676-5506

Thursday, 20 September 2018

Dating After Divorce

Dating After Divorce

Getting back into the dating world after a divorce can be exciting — as well as incredibly frightening. Before you decide to take this next step in your journey, there are a few questions you should ask yourself to be completely sure you are ready to date.

What outcome do I hope to achieve in this relationship?

What kind of relationship are you looking for? Are you all-in on looking for a new long-term partner, or are you simply looking for something light and fun? You do not have to have a desired outcome set in stone, but you should at least consider what your intentions are and what you hope to achieve.

You don’t have to have a serious intention with a relationship, but it’s good to at least set reasonable expectations so you can be more comfortable if you start to get serious with a new partner.

Have I taken enough time to heal after my divorce?

It can take some time to emotionally heal after a divorce. You should reserve some time for reflection and to get over the tough times you’ve recently experienced. If you are still feeling a lot of pain, hurt or anger, you may need more time before you seriously begin dating again. This is just as much for your potential new partner’s sake as yours — it is unfair to use another person as a means to get over your divorce.

What will I tell my children?

You should not give your children any details they do not need to know. It can be understandably difficult to bring up a new relationship to your kids, but you will not be able to hide it forever. Be as honest as you can, and speak with a counselor if you’d like further advice.

What to Know About Equitable Distribution in Utah

In Utah, the standard for divorcing couples is that their property will be divided in an equitable manner. Note that this does not necessarily mean an equal division, but instead a fair one. When making decisions regarding asset distribution, courts will consider what each spouse brought to the marriage and what each will need once the marriage has ended.

Some of the factors a judge will consider include the following:

  • The income and property each spouse had at the time of marriage and the time of the divorce filing
  • The length of the marriage
  • The age and health of each spouse
  • Any pension, inheritance rights and health insurance either spouse will lose due to the divorce
  • Whether the court has awarded or will award alimony
  • Whether the marital property is liquid or non-liquid
  • Each spouse’s likely financial circumstances in the future
  • The tax consequences of the divorce and asset distribution to each spouse
  • Whether either spouse has purposefully wasted marital assets
  • Whether either spouse has transferred marital property to another person or entity as a means of avoiding distribution

Only property acquired during the course of the marriage is divided by the court, with a few exceptions, such as inheritance or gifts. Examples of marital property include any income earned during the marriage by either spouse, the property purchased using that income, other properties purchased while married, retirement benefits either spouse earned during marriage and the appreciation of any assets (such as real estate or valuables) accrued during the marriage. Businesses and professional practices are also subject to equitable distribution if they can be classified as marital property.

Free Consultation with Divorce Lawyer in Utah

If you have a question about divorce law or if you need to start or defend against a divorce case in Utah call Ascent Law at (801) 676-5506. We will fight for you.

Michael R. Anderson, JD

Ascent Law LLC
8833 S. Redwood Road, Suite C
West Jordan, Utah
84088 United States

Telephone: (801) 676-5506

Why Use a Lawyer?

Why Use a Lawyer

You may have just been in an accident. It may have been a dog bite, car accident or motorcycle accident. Many people wonder if using a lawyer is necessary to get the compensation they use. Here are a few ways decide if hiring representation is the best option for you.

Perform a Cost-Benefit Analysis

A cost-benefit analysis is where you measure the cost of hiring a lawyer versus the possible benefit of having one. An example of this is if you suffer a dog bite. The dog owner’s insurance company is willing to offer you $5,000, but your hospital bills and physical therapy are going to cost over $10,000. The lawyer you are considering charges $1,000 retainer and $50 per hour. He/she expects that it is going to take eight hours of work on your case. That brings your total to $1,4000. This means that you could gain $5,000 by using a lawyer with a cost of $1,400. In this instance, it is a good idea to hire a professional for your dog bite case.

How Complicated Is the Law?

Legal practitioners spend their whole careers studying the law. Probably you, like most other non-lawyers, spend almost no time studying the law. If you are involved in a complicated dispute such as a divorce, a difficult loss of a loved one or at risk of losing your license for a car or other accident, you should hire representation. They will know the best course to take to offer you the best chance of success.

There are many other reasons to consider hiring a lawyer. If you are in Salt Lake City and in need of representation, there are many great options that will get you the results you deserve. Don’t miss the opportunity for you to get the compensation you’re due. You don’t have to fight alone when you’ve suffered a loss.

HELPFUL TIPS FOR DRIVING SAFELY ON RURAL ROADS

From the outskirts of Salt Lake City to other, more remote parts of the United States, living in a rural area comes with its own unique set of perks. Familial privacy, spacious properties and a more intimate connection with Mother Nature generally atop the list of benefits for those who forego the convenience of living in a city for the family farm, ranch, cabin or distant home.

That said, while an escape from the hustle and bustle of an urban environment in Salt Lake City or elsewhere might be seen as a definite positive, it can be hard for new residents to adjust to the poor road conditions which often frequent rural settings, thus causing many an auto accident.

As is the case with just about anything in life, practice make perfect. In the meantime, however, if you’re still adjusting, there are a few things you can do to keep both you and your family safe from uneven rural roads.

First and foremost, it’s important that a motorist’s eyes always be on the lookout for danger, so as to avoid the need for a personal injury lawyer later on. Blind turns, sudden dips, potholes, muddy conditions and nearby farm equipment should always raise the level of caution a driver uses while out and about.

Furthermore, assume the worst will take place and prepare accordingly. This isn’t limited to an auto accident, mind you. Tire punctures, engine damages and even getting lost in the middle of nowhere happen more often than you’d think. Unfortunately, a cell phone or helpful lawyer won’t always be enough to get you out of trouble.

Just in case, always have extra gas, a spare tire, first-aid kit and spending money on-hand. Though not every auto accident is avoidable and a lawyer might very well be needed to help set the record straight, making a conscious effort to drive safely while on rural roads just outside of Salt Lake City—or any other removed location, for that matter—can do a wealth of good for rural motorists.

Free Initial Consultation with a Personal Injury Lawyer

If you’ve been injured and need legal help, call Ascent Law for your free consultation (801) 676-5506. We want to help you.

Michael R. Anderson, JD

Ascent Law LLC
8833 S. Redwood Road, Suite C
West Jordan, Utah
84088 United States

Telephone: (801) 676-5506

Wednesday, 19 September 2018

West Jordan Utah Adoption Lawyer

West Jordan Utah Adoption Lawyer

Whether you’re a step parent already helping to raise a child or a couple hoping for a new family member, the Utah adoption attorneys can help. We take the time to get to know each client and their situation personally, and will work with determination to get your adoption approved.

In Utah, adoption cases go through family court, which also handles divorces, custody issues and more. In most situations, the case begins with filing the correct documents. Then, a hearing is scheduled and a judge asks the adopting parent questions. Next, adoption documents are signed by the new parents and the judge signs an adoption decree. Finally, a new birth certificate will be issued by the Office of Vital Records and Statistics.

EXPERIENCED UTAH ADOPTION ATTORNEYS

Lawyers have extensive experience helping families adopt and arrange custody agreements for all kinds of married couples, including same-sex spouses and people in traditional marriages. We can help you navigate the ins and outs of Utah’s complicated adoption system, and we get to know you personally to help the process go smoothly for you and your family.

CHILD ADOPTION OPTIONS IN UTAH

There are numerous situations that lead couples to seek adoption in Utah, and the reasons range from wanting to share insurance benefits with the whole family to wanting to raise a child of your own when you and your partner are unable to conceive. Each kind of adoption comes with special rules and procedures, so we urge you to contact us at the beginning of the process. That way, you can avoid the missteps and confusion that can make adoption so difficult for some people. The types of adoption are:

  • Step-parent adoption: In this situation, notice must be given to the noncustodial parent and he or she must consent, as must the married partner of the adopting parent and, in some cases, a legal guardian. Furthermore, the child must have been living with the adoptive parent for at least one year and must be at least 10 years younger than the adoptive parent. If the adoptee is 12 years old or older, he or she must consent to the adoption.
  • Infant adoption: In these cases, the biological parents are entitled to receive counseling sessions and must be made aware of this right before adoption can occur. Often, these adoptions go through child placement agencies. The biological mother and, if he can be located, the biological father have to sign papers relinquishing parental rights.
  • Out of state adoption: This is for a child 6 months old or younger, and it can occur only after the birth mother has properly notified the biological father. She must not have lived in Utah for at least 90 days.
  • Foster child adoption: For either adoption or placement of a child in state custody, the new parents must be fingerprinted by the FBI and undergo a background check by the Dept. of Human Services for any history of child abuse or neglect, unless the child is being placed with a noncustodial parent or relative. For an adoption decree to go through, the court must find that adoption is in the best interest of the child.
  • Immigrant adoption: Also known as alien child adoption, this is when a family wants to adopt a child aged 16 or younger who is not a naturalized citizen. The adoptive parents must have permanent residence in the United States and must provide evidence from the federal Immigration and Naturalization Service approving the process. The process for birth parents who live here but are not legal residents requires working with the FBI as well.
  • International adoption: In these cases, a document from the foreign country is treated as if it were an adoption decree rendered by the Utah courts. The adoptive parents must register with the state and file for a new birth certificate.
  • Adult adoption: This occurs for people who are 65 years of age or older or people aged 18 or older who have mental or physical impairments.

Free Initial Consultation with an Adoption Lawyer in West Jordan Utah

We love adoption cases. They are our favorite. When you need help with an adoption, call Ascent Law for your free consultation (801) 676-5506. We want to help you.

Michael R. Anderson, JD

Ascent Law LLC
8833 S. Redwood Road, Suite C
West Jordan, Utah
84088 United States

Telephone: (801) 676-5506

Resolve Your Divorce with a Level Head

Resolve Your Divorce with a Level Head

Even if you and your spouse both agree to dissolve your marriage and move on, divorce is never an easy process. There are many emotions and tough issues to resolve, and it can be difficult to keep a clear head when finalizing the terms of your divorce.

During this time, it’s extremely important to approach these issues rationally and to avoid getting overly emotional. After all, a great deal of your future rests on the decisions you make when negotiating with your former partner on matters involving child custody, child support and the division of marital property.

The following are several steps you should take to prepare for divorce in Salt Lake City:

  • Gather financial records: Before a divorce, get organized and prepare all of your financial documents and store them in a safe place — such as a friend or relative’s house.
  • Start saving money: Divorce can be expensive, especially if you need to engage in litigation. Start saving moving as early as possible to make sure you can cover the fees and costs involved.
  • Open new checking/savings accounts: You likely have joint accounts with your spouse, so you should open new checking and savings accounts as a place to store and save your own money.
  • Change your beneficiaries: If your spouse is listed as a beneficiary in your will or life insurance policy, you might want to name someone else.
  • Inventory marital and non-marital property: The division of marital assets can be a difficult process, and it helps to be organized. Make sure you know which key assets you share versus which ones you own separately.

Second Time Around: Four Tips for Success

Love makes the world go ‘round. Even after a lengthy or high-conflict divorce experience, many of my clients remarry. At any age, the opportunity to build a life with a person with whom you share abiding love and companionship is a blessing.

If considering a second marriage, or if you just started into your first relationship since divorce, take a look at these tips for making a second marriage or relationship last:

  • Once bitten, twice shy: You have been divorced — think about why. While you should not let ghosts of the past derail a future relationship, try to gain perspective on why a first marriage failed, and what you might do to avoid a split the second time around.
  • Prenuptial contracts: Anyone who goes through divorce is not likely to be squeamish about discussing assets and financial responsibility. Our firm regularly drafts clear, concise prenuptial agreements for clients entering a second marriage. Hard-earned assets or property are clearly identified as separate, so that they will remain free from equitable distribution, should the second marriage fail.
  • Stepparents: The role of a new spouse is complicated. If an earlier divorce was traumatic, there are a few clues as to how children will handle a second marriage. Maintaining a stable household, and keeping boundaries clear and lines of communication open, are respectful ways to address the anxiety of children in a new parenting situation.
  • Location, location, location: Second marriages often involve one partner moving into the home of another. While this makes sound economic sense, a residence owned by one spouse will always be their house. Talk to your partner about ways to keep separately- owned property, while finding a new residence both can call home.

Free Consultation with Divorce Lawyer in Utah

If you have a question about divorce law or if you need to start or defend against a divorce case in Utah call Ascent Law at (801) 676-5506. We will fight for you.

Michael R. Anderson, JD

Ascent Law LLC
8833 S. Redwood Road, Suite C
West Jordan, Utah
84088 United States

Telephone: (801) 676-5506

Tuesday, 18 September 2018

Corporate Attorney

Corporate Attorney

Oftentimes people wonder whether they need a corporate attorney to help them with a case.  If you have a corporation, limited liability company (“LLC”), partnership, or other entity, you may need corporate counsel.

Corporation

A corporation is a legal entity apart from its owners (shareholders).  Corporations can establish credit, acquire assets, and enter into contractual engagements. Potential liabilities are incurred by the corporation, not by the owners themselves.  This means that the personal assets of officers and shareholders are usually safe from the corporation’s creditors.  However, if shareholders fail to follow corporate formalities, a court may “pierce the corporate veil”, allowing creditors access to personal property. Owners of corporations don’t pay tax on the corporation’s earnings unless they actually receive the money as dividends or as compensation for services (e.g. salaries and bonuses).  The corporation itself pays taxes on all profits left in the business.

Benefits of a Corporation

  • First and foremost, there is limited liability for shareholders.  This perk attracts investors, as an investor’s liability and exposure is limited to the amount of his or her investment – less risk! This makes raising capital for your corporation less challenging.
  • Forming a corporation also increases the credibility of your company, and provides an opportunity for prestige among business and corporate officers.
  • Finally, corporations have several tax, compensation and wage benefits.

Detriments of a Corporation

  • You have to observe corporate formalities.  These are the basic operating rules that are necessary to ensure that the corporation maintains its status as a separate legal entity.  Some of the formalities include appointing officer positions, electing a board of directors, proper documentation of the corporation’s activity, annual meetings, etc.
  • Reaching corporate status is not a monumental task, but one must be sure to ensure the process is done correctly.
  • Another downfall is that a corporation goes through double taxation.  A traditional corporation must pay tax on all corporate income, followed by individual shareholders paying income taxagain on whatever distributions they received. One way to avoid the double taxation dilemma is to establish the corporation as a “pass through” entity.  This way all corporate profits pass through to the individual shareholders, so they alone will be responsible for the tax burden.  When a corporation elects to be treated this way, it becomes known as an “S” Corporation, which is discussed below.

Nonprofit Corporation

Nonprofit organizations are formed in the state where they intend to do business. Unlike a standard corporation, nonprofits do not conduct activities for the financial gain of shareholders.  Preventing the distribution of profits to members/shareholders is what distinguishes the nonprofit from a commercial enterprise; yet nonprofits still provide asset protection and limited liability.  A nonprofit corporation is not forbidden from making a profit — but if it does, that profit can only be used to further the overarching goal or mission of the organization.  Nonprofits can also trade at a profit and accept, hold and disburse money; but all profit and things of value are to be used to further the nonprofit’s quest.   Nonprofits are organized in many different ways: charities, service organizations, trusts, hospitals, universities, foundations, endowments and cooperatives can all operate as nonprofits.  Nonprofits can have “members”, although many do not.  They may have employees, and can compensate their directors reasonably, but only if compensation is documented ever-so-carefully.

Benefits of a Nonprofit

  • Nonprofit corporations generally have tax exempt status.
  • Once the recognized nonprofit entity has been formed at the state level, the nonprofit corporation can seek tax exempt status by applying to the IRS.  The IRS, after reviewing the application to ensure the purpose of the organization meets certain conditions, will issue an authorization letter granting it tax exempt status for income tax purposes. The exemption does not apply to other federal taxes such as employment taxes. Charitable contributions made to nonprofit organizations by individuals and corporations are also deductible.

Detriments of a Nonprofit

  • The reliability by which a non-profit organization can hire and retain staff, sustain facilities, or create programs is an ongoing problem.  Because nonprofits generally rely on external funding, they do not have much say over their precious sources of revenue.  This leads to reliance on government funds such as grants, contracts, vouchers or tax credits to support their operations.

Free Consultation with a Utah Corporate Attorney

If you are here, you probably have a business law issue you need help with, call Ascent Law for your free business law consultation (801) 676-5506. We want to help you.

Michael R. Anderson, JD

Ascent Law LLC
8833 S. Redwood Road, Suite C
West Jordan, Utah
84088 United States

Telephone: (801) 676-5506

5 Reasons to Get a Prenuptial Agreement

5 Reasons to Get a Prenuptial Agreement

Many people see prenuptial agreements as a poor way to start a marriage because they seem to anticipate its failure. But with nearly 50,000 New York marriages ending in divorce in 2009, getting married without a prenuptial agreement—also called an antenuptial agreement or prenup—can be a risky proposition.

A prenuptial agreement is essentially a contract a couple enters prior to marriage that establishes in advance what will occur in case of divorce. It may make provisions for property division, clearly establish marital and personal property, set forth maintenance or alimony payments from one spouse to the other, and plan out the care and custody of minor children.

Prenuptial agreements can be especially useful in marriages where the spouses have unequal economic capabilities. In essence, such agreements limit the risk of loss to the economically advantaged spouse while still providing a guaranteed settlement to the economically disadvantaged spouse. But regardless, a prenuptial agreement can simplify the process of divorce and limit the necessity of settlement negotiations or litigation.

In fact, a prenuptial agreement can even help foster and preserve a happy marriage. While people regard a prenup primarily as divorce planning, it can also contain provisions for during the course of the marriage. A good prenuptial agreement can establish or clarify the rights and duties of each spouse during the duration of the marriage. It can help avoid common sources of marital discord—such as financial disagreements or disputes over child rearing—by resolving them before they occur.

Why Staying Together Is Not Always in a Family’s Best Interests

Rather than face their fears, many unhappily married people justify staying trapped in a dysfunctional situation. They let fears about money, the children, and changing the family dynamic paralyze them into inaction.

But there can also be costs to staying put, such as the following:

  • Marital bickering and fighting creates a tense atmosphere affecting the whole household
  • A miserable marital relationship erodes self-esteem and causes depression
  • A stressful marriage can hurt your health, leading to hypertension, heart attacks, and strokes
  • Poor work performance

Staying in a bad marriage can have a negative impact on the children[CK1], especially those in their formative years. Children from unhappy homes can exhibit behavioral issues, including the following:

  • Insecurity
  • Social withdrawal
  • Poor grades
  • Acting out in anger

Filing for divorce and embarking on a new life will seem less scary if you develop an action plan and then take steps to ensure a smooth transition. Consider options that help you become self-sufficient, such as getting a job, arranging for childcare, and finding affordable housing.

Build a support network of family, friends, and counselors. Also, look for an experienced divorce lawyer who can guide you through the legal process and fight for your interests, such as equitable child custody, child support, and property distribution.

Free Consultation with Divorce Lawyer in Utah

If you have a question about divorce law or if you need to start or defend against a divorce case in Utah call Ascent Law at (801) 676-5506. We will fight for you.

Michael R. Anderson, JD

Ascent Law LLC
8833 S. Redwood Road, Suite C
West Jordan, Utah
84088 United States

Telephone: (801) 676-5506

Monday, 17 September 2018

Navigating a Gray Divorce

Navigating a Gray Divorce

Our law firm represents people going through divorce on their way to a new future. Some have been married four years or less, and some forty years or more. In the United States, while the average divorce rate is leveling off, the divorce rate for couples over 50 doubled between 1990 and 2009.

Consider these facts from a National Center for Family and Marriage Research study focused on divorce at midlife:

  • In 2009, one in four divorces involved persons 50 years of age or older.
  • Marital biography affects the divorce rate. Remarriages are more likely to end in divorce.
  • Increased life expectancy may fuel a desire for greater satisfaction in intimate and personal relationships.

While issues of divorce are similar for all couples, the impact of divorce at 55 is different than it is at 25. If you are over age 50, it is critical that your divorce lawyer achieves financial results that enable you to maintain your quality of life through retirement.

Here are tips for navigating later-life divorce:

  • Retaining wealth is key. Our skilled mediation lawyers help you and your spouse make equitable agreements that will help you keep money in your pockets. Alternatively, when we represent you individually, we have the resources and tenacity to discover, and properly value, complicated or hidden assets, in order to ensure your fair share.
  • Later in life, children are older, and child custody and child support disputes may be over — but different child-related issues arise. We craft fair and clear prenuptial agreements, to ensure the proper transfer of property or possessions to your children, in the case of remarriage.

Important Things to Know About Residency Requirements for Divorce

When you begin the divorce process, you must understand the rules about where you can file your papers and which court has jurisdiction over your case. These are known as residency requirements.

Before you can file, you must satisfy the basic legal requirement that either you or your spouse have a residence or domicile in that state. The concept of “residence” is simple — it just means that either you or your spouse have been present in the state for a certain amount of time.

“Domicile” is slightly more complicated. More than just being present in the state for a certain period, either you or your spouse must have a permanent, single home in the filing state. To establish domicile, courts consider factors such as where an individual works, votes, banks, has a registered vehicle and where his or her children attend school (if applicable)

Even if you are not able to establish domicile, there is a good chance you will still be able to file for divorce if you meet the residency requirements of the state.

Filing Divorce Paperwork

When you are ready to file, you will submit the required paperwork in the state where either one or both of you can establish residency or domicile. If you can establish residency or domicile in multiple states, then you have the option to file for divorce in any of them. In this scenario, it is important to consult with a divorce lawyer about where you are most likely to get a favorable outcome.

Free Consultation with Divorce Lawyer in Utah

If you have a question about divorce law or if you need to start or defend against a divorce case in Utah call Ascent Law at (801) 676-5506. We will fight for you.

Michael R. Anderson, JD

Ascent Law LLC
8833 S. Redwood Road, Suite C
West Jordan, Utah
84088 United States

Telephone: (801) 676-5506