Legal-Ease: Impending tax law change impacts family businesses

Before the end of 2016, the IRS is expected to issue a new regulation that will significantly affect gift and estate taxes for many family businesses. Traditionally certain family-owned businesses are considered valuable due to the respective businesses’ synergy. So if one sibling wants to sell his 1/5 share of a $5 million business, his individual share would be worth less than $1 million. This concept is referred to as discounting for lack of marketability and lack of control. It’s often used in farm and business succession planning to keep things fair among heirs as well as to continue the viability of family businesses and farms. But now the IRS will be cracking down on discounts for lack of marketability and lack of control in one area: estate and gift tax calculations.

Legal-Ease: Do I need title insurance?

When purchasing real estate, public records are searched to confirm who owns the parcel of property and if there are any liens or assessments on the property. This process is called a title search. Anyone can perform a title search, and when a title search is done by someone who is not an attorney, the recorded instruments identified that could affect the property’s ownership or use are listed in a title report. The best protection to be sure that the property has no use or ownership issues is title insurance.

Legal-Ease: How much does an LLC cost?

It’s often difficult to offer a value to the protection gained from certain legal tools such as an LLC. The actual cost of an LLC includes the $99 filing fee, a detailed operating agreement and the cost associated with creating that, a tax identification number and flowcharts and explanations on how to manage the LLC. An LLC also needs to be funded with assets. In northwest Ohio, establishing an LLC typically costs between $400 and $4,000.

Legal-Ease: Murder, manslaughter or homicide?

The terms murder, manslaughter and homicide can be confusing, especially since in the state of Ohio the terms used to describe deaths of people caused by others are different from the terms that are used under federal law and other states. Classifications of deaths that are caused by other people are usually organized by the mental state of the person who caused the death as well as the circumstances that surround the death.

Legal-Ease: Statutes of limitation

Statutes of limitation define the length of time after an issue arises that the person who has been damaged can try to recover money or other relief from the person who initially caused the damage. Unless a specific federal law is involved, Ohio law will define the appropriate statute of limitation. Typically the statute of limitations begins when the harm, damage, action or inaction took place. So for example, since the statute of limitations for civil trespass on real estate is four years, someone could sue the alleged trespasser within four years after the trespass took place.