2011 Articles

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Navigating the Minefield of Long Distance Caregiving

  • Gina M. Barry • 2011-12-29
  • There comes a point when most of our nation's elders will need assistance with various tasks, such as household management, bathing, dressing, medication management, meal preparation and eating, transferring, and/or ...

Your Updated Employee Manual: Amending Your Company's Policies to Reflect Changing Times

  • Adam J. Basch • 2011-12-19
  • Everybody recognizes that technology is rapidly changing the workplace. Most employees have access to the Internet during business hours from their work computers, and even those who don't likely have ...

Lessons in Employer Liability: What to Take Away from the Sexual-abuse Scandal at Penn State

  • Kevin V. Maltby • 2011-12-05
  • Recent allegations that Jerry Sandusky, former defensive coordinator for the Penn State University football team, sexually abused children while employed by the school have brought to the forefront issues relating ...

Transitional Planning in Special Ed: Start Early When Determining and Preparing for Life After School

  • Melissa R. Gillis • 2011-12-01
  • Parents and guardians of special-education students often misunderstand the rights that state and federal law affords such students, particularly in the area of transitional planning. Transition services are those designed ...

Year End Planning - It's Not Too Late . . . Yet

  • Gina M. Barry • 2011-12-01
  • Year end is soon approaching. As you sit down for your holiday dinner, remember that soon Uncle Sam will be visiting you to enjoy his share of your bounty. Despite ...

Changed Ice and Snow Removal Laws: Property Owners Beware!

  • Philip R. Smith • 2011-11-17
  • For 200 years, the laws Massachusetts supported the position that a property owner was not liable for any injuries caused by a natural, (or untouched,) accumulation of snow or ice. ...

The 2010 Health Care Mandate: Understand the Many Ways It Can Impact Your Bottom Line

  • Bruce M. Fogel • 2011-11-07
  • Everybody knows that the government is out of money and needs to raise cash. However, do you understand the financial impact that the 2010 health care legislation will have on ...

Finances and Alzheimer's Disease: There Are Many Such Matters Involved with 'the Long Goodbye'

  • Todd C. Ratner • 2011-11-01
  • November is National Alzheimer's Disease Awareness Month as well as National Family Caregiver Month. To appreciate the breadth of these issues, it is helpful to understand that the Alzheimer's Association ...

Taking the Guesswork out of Choosing an Attorney

  • Gina M. Barry • 2011-11-01
  • Choosing an attorney to represent you in any legal matter can be an especially daunting task. Should you rely on advertising you might have seen in the local media or ...

Preserving Your Home - One of Your Most Valuable Assets

  • Gary F. Bevilacqua • 2011-10-27
  • Your home is usually the most valuable asset that you own. Estate planning lawyers are frequently asked how one's home can be successfully transferred to their children without the expense ...

Explore Your Options: Many Alternative and Supplemental Financing Sources Exist for Business

  • Gary G. Breton • 2011-10-10
  • So, you're looking for financing for your business to allow it to remain viable through these difficult and volatile economic times. But you find that all your traditional sources of ...

Estate Planning in Blended Families Considerations for Couples with Children from Previous Relationships

  • Hyman G. Darling • 2011-10-01
  • The days of mostly traditional American families are probably gone for good. The modern family of today is often a mix of spouses, exes, kids, and steps who somehow find ...

Things to Know When Your Child is Also Your Caregiver

  • Gina M. Barry • 2011-10-01
  • It is very common for a child to provide assistance to an aging parent in order to allow the parent to continue to live at home. A child is the ...

Deed with Life Estate: Understanding the Pros and Cons of This Handy Estate-planning Tool

  • Todd C. Ratner • 2011-09-01
  • Your home is typically the most valuable asset that you own. Estate-planning and elder-law attorneys are frequently asked how one's home can ultimately be transferred to a client's children without ...

The Impact of Grief on Your Estate Plan

  • Gina M. Barry • 2011-09-01
  • No one knows exactly when they will pass away, which means that it is never too soon to plan. Those left behind are called upon to tend to your final ...

Charitable Giving and Medicaid Issues

  • Hyman G. Darling • 2011-08-30
  • Summary: What do charitable giving and Medicaid have in common? As it turns out, quite a bit. Writing on behalf of the National Academy of Elder Law Attorneys, Springfield, Massachusetts ...

Asset Protection Planning

  • Philip R. Smith • 2011-08-25
  • It was not long ago that a typical family estate plan consisted of two wills, one for each spouse. Very few plans went beyond this. In today's estate plans, however, ...

A Case Law Update: Recent Court Decisions Have Implications for Small Businesses

  • Kevin V. Maltby • 2011-08-15
  • There have been several new developments in employment law that may have an impact on small business. These cases involve various issues, including wage-and-hour and retaliation claims. While the facts ...

For Good Measure Autism Insurance Legislation: What It Means for Your Child

  • Melissa R. Gillis • 2011-08-01
  • Imagine this: an issue so big that when the governor signs a much-anticipated bill into law so many parents and families want to view the historic event that the signing ...

Special Needs Require Special Planning

  • Gina M. Barry • 2011-08-01
  • Many people in the United States are currently considered disabled as defined by Social Security. Their disability may entitle them to receive various benefits that are provided by the federal ...

Demystifying Probate - The Probate Process, Step-By-Step

  • Todd C. Ratner • 2011-07-28
  • One of the most common goals of people as they grow older and build their assets is to avoid the probate process. Although it is not necessary a horrendous ordeal, ...

Home Repair Following the Tornadoes: The Art of Finding a Contractor and Dealing with Your Insurer

  • Adam J. Basch • 2011-07-18
  • After a loss from the recent tornadoes in Western Mass., most people called their home insurer. Shortly thereafter, an agent showed up at the home to inspect it. Within a ...

The MUPC: an Overview Uniform Probate Code Features Several New Provisions

  • Todd C. Ratner • 2011-07-01
  • In January 2009, the Massachusetts Legislature enacted the new Uniform Probate Code (MUPC). Although certain provisions of the MUPC pertaining to guardians and conservators came into effect on July 1, ...

Estate Planning: Not Just for Elders You Should Prepare Now to Prevent Future Problems

  • Hyman G. Darling • 2011-06-01
  • Maintaining your estate plan is very important, regardless of your health or age. In fact, the Commonwealth of Massachusetts has already drafted a will for you, so if you want ...

Male Perspective Estate Planning

  • Todd C. Ratner • 2011-06-01
  • The conventional gender roles are eroding quickly as women have made great strides in the world of business and politics. It has become increasingly uncommon to see the likes of ...

Estate Planning - The Four Documents You Really Can't Afford to be Without

  • Philip R. Smith • 2011-05-26
  • The benefits of planning your estate, in money saved and peace of mind, make getting started on a plan one of the best ways to care for your loved ones ...

A Case Law Update: Recent Court Decisions Have Implications for Small Businesses

  • Kevin V. Maltby • 2011-05-17
  • There have been several new developments in employment law that may have an impact on small business. These cases involve various issues, including wage and hour and retaliation claims. While ...

Issues of Time and Space: Navigating the Minefield of Long-distance Caregiving

  • Gina M. Barry • 2011-05-01
  • There comes a point when most of our nation's elders will need assistance with various tasks, such as household management, bathing, dressing, medication management, meal preparation and eating, transferring, and/or ...

Estate Planning Concerns for Women

  • Gina M. Barry • 2011-05-01
  • In May, we celebrate Mother's Day, honoring mothers and showering them with love and attention. Most could not bear to think of their mother facing any adversity, and when it ...

What is Title Insurance? Why would you purchase a policy?

  • Gary F. Bevilacqua • 2011-04-28
  • Real estate has such great value and is such a basic form of wealth and prestige that many special laws have been enacted for its protection. As a result, a ...

Organizing Your Estate Plan

  • Gina M. Barry • 2011-04-22
  • As you complete your Spring cleaning this year, one of the most important things you can organize is your estate plan. If your estate plan is organized, your affairs can ...

Special Education What Every Parent Should Know About Their Child's IEP

  • Melissa R. Gillis • 2011-03-01
  • At this time of year, some parents find themselves thinking about the impending review of their child's Individualized Education Program (the IEP) and what battles lay ahead. Others are wondering ...

Estate Tax Update

  • Gina M. Barry • 2011-03-01
  • When a Massachusetts resident passes away, every asset that he or she owns is subject to estate tax. Estate tax is imposed by both the Commonwealth of Massachusetts (state estate ...

Decisions, Decisions: An Employment Case-law Update

  • Kevin V. Maltby • 2011-02-14
  • This past year brought about several developments in employment law that have a potential impact on Western Massachusetts business. Employers in Massachusetts must comply with both state and federal law, ...

IRS Form 1099 Explained: Know the Requirements in Order to Remain in Compliance

  • Bruce M. Fogel • 2011-02-14
  • Many of us, at one time or another, have seen an IRS form titled 1099. Most of us are familiar with the more usual versions of that form including: The ...

Pet Trusts Arrive in Massachusetts

  • Gina M. Barry • 2011-02-01
  • With the arrival of Valentine's Day in February, many of us reflect on the relationships that are most important to us. While the focus is typically on romantic love, many ...

Developmental Delay or Disability? Making Early Identification of Your Child's Special Needs

  • Melissa R. Gillis • 2011-01-31
  • Parents of young children, particularly children under the age of 5, often wonder whether their child is meeting all the important developmental milestones. Many guiltily admit that they want to ...

Understanding Veterans' Benefits Assistance: Is Available to Those Who Qualify Financially

  • Hyman G. Darling • 2011-01-03
  • There are currently approximately 25 million veterans alive in the United States, many of whom are not disabled. In addition, there are over 9 million surviving spouses of veterans, many ...

Estate Planning Checkup

  • Gina M. Barry • 2011-01-01
  • Any estate planner will tell you that your legal house is not in order if you have not yet completed the four basic estate planning documents as discussed below. 1. ...