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By Doreen Letty on December 17, 2012

With the New Year on its way, and in addition to the “fiscal cliff” issues, there are a few changes that will or may arise from the Legislature that affect individual homeowners and potential buyers of real estate, and the real estate market as a whole.

December 12, 2012

From time to time, and particularly during the holiday season, I am asked by kith and kin alike about the responsibility a homeowner has to prevent people from drinking too much at a holiday party. Concerns range from the health of the person drinking copious quantities of eggnog to the legal liability and of the host who provided the eggnog. I cannot offer an opinion on the healthy amount of eggnog, but I can provide some insight into issues that may arise when a drunk guest leaves a party and injures someone.

By Kenneth Olena on November 26, 2012

The issue of a person’s legal place of residence has significance in matrimonial proceedings and other legal matters affecting where you can sue or be sued or where you must pay taxes among others. Legal residence is primarily a function of intent. 

By Robin Friedman on November 15, 2012

Am I eligible for Social Security Disability?

In order to qualify for SSD you must have worked in a job(s) covered under the Social Security System and paid Social Security taxes. By working and paying taxes, you earn Social Security credits. The number of credits required to qualify for disability depends on your age and how long you have worked. You can check your Social Security Statement to see how many credits you have earned or contact Social Security’s toll free number at 800.772.1213 for this information.

November 12, 2012

Many parents are under the misunderstanding that if they are the custodial parent of a child they can relocate at will and merely have to file documentation alerting the court and other parent of their decision. This is entirely incorrect.

November 2, 2012

If you are considering adoption as a means to create or add to your family, you may be aware that the United States Internal Revenue Code allows for an Adoption Tax Credit of up to $12,170.00+ for “qualified adoption expenses” paid or incurred by adoptive parent taxpayers. Please keep in mind that the Code allows for a taxcredit (a dollar for dollar reduction of federal tax) and this is not a mere deduction against taxable income. This is by far the largest tax credit available to individual taxpayers. The Credit was made refundable by law for 2010 and 2011, but is not refundable in 2012- meaning only families with federal income tax liability will benefit from this Credit in 2012. Also of significance is that the Adoption Tax Credit is available per child. The Adoption Tax Credit not only encourages parents to adopt children in need, but it makes adoption affordable for many that would otherwise be unable to complete their families.

October 30, 2012

Before purchasing a cell phone for an adolescent, parents should consider some potential consequences for both their child and themselves if the cell phone is not used responsibly. The consequences of the behavior below may outweigh the benefit of being able to pull up the internet to resolve a friendly debate.

By Diane Tiveron on October 24, 2012

Although no method is full proof, we thought we would provide some information and tips on how to avoid identity theft. The tips include the following:

October 22, 2012

During last summer’s legislative session the New York State Senate and Assembly passed a bill that will require insurance companies in to include supplementary underinsured/uninsured motorist coverage (SUM) in their policies at the same level as the insured’s own liability limits.  Although not signed into law by Gov. Cuomo yet, this is an important piece of consumer protection legislation for all insured automobile drivers to understand.

By Robin Friedman on October 8, 2012

After reading a recent article in the Buffalo News entitled “A brief review of how Social Security disability payments work” I thought I could address some of the issues that in my experience many people face in navigating and understanding the system.

Depending on your own situation, you may be eligible for one or more of the following:

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