Wyomissing, Pennsylvania Family Law and Estate Planning Blog

Should I form a limited liability partnership (LLP)?

Some Pennsylvania entrepreneurs have special concerns about exposing themselves to liability when starting a new business. If you and a business partner are exploring a way to come together to form a business while limiting your liability exposure, a limited liability partnership is one option to consider. Even so, LLPs are not for every partnership, so some factors should be taken into account while exploring this option.

Chron.com explains that certain businesses are more at risk for liability than others, so if you are considering an LLP, you should think about whether you will be likely to face litigation because of the kind of profession you practice. Doctors, for example, may encounter litigation from patients who sue on the basis of malpractice. Forming an LLP can help offer some protection for one partner in the event the other partner ends up harming a customer, client or patient.

Should I set up my business as an LLC?

When you decide to launch your own small business, you have a lot of decisions to make. One of the most important, which sometimes is complicated to understand, is considering the legal ramifications of business ownership. If you’ve done even a little research into it and plan on owning a small business, you know you’ll have to choose whether to be a sole proprietor or to establish an LLC.

How do you handle a high asset divorce?

Pennsylvania has certain laws that help determine who gets what during a divorce. Though these issues can be less problematic for those with fewer assets, if you have a lot of assets they can create some unique hurdles.

FindLaw takes a look at some tips for handling high asset divorces, which can have its own unique set of problems to overcome in addition to the usual struggles involved with divorces. The first tip is to keep track of the assets you actually have. This can get more confusing depending on how many sources there are. For example, assets will include retirement funds, savings accounts, businesses, and anything inherited from others after their passing. Knowing exactly what you have will allow you to avoid complications if more assets are found after divisions are finalized.

Avoid these costly estate planning mistakes

On the road of good intentions, estate planners and holders have made mistakes. Unfortunately, many mistakes can be difficult and expensive to resolve. Therefore, an estate holder or testator needs to be diligent, thorough and methodical to avoid these mistakes.

A testator and the family will benefit from careful and detailed estate planning. To accomplish that, many online sources are available that provide astute and appropriate guidance.  Pennsylvania also offers online resources about wills and estate planning. A testator and an estate planner must have a comprehensive knowledge of the estate plan, and each should serve as a check and balance on the other.

3 options to pass assets to heirs in Pennsylvania

There are various ways to pass on wealth to heirs in Pennsylvania. Some of these may involve the probate court while others may have other legal frameworks. A fully diversified estate usually contains a combination of tools.

This article discusses three major types of financial planning tools. Within each of these categories, there are specific concerns and advantages. An appraisal of a person's financial, familial and legal position should determine the best estate plan strategy.

Is it possible to run a business with your ex?

It is probably technically and legally possible to own and run a business in partnership with your ex-spouse. As long as he or she could legally sign a partnership contract or assume ownership of an LLC or corporation, then you could continue to be partners in business after the end of your marriage.

The question of whether you could do this efficiently is somewhat different. Some divorcing couples have some emotional conflict surrounding the split, and others may have some financial disagreements they might need to settle before focusing completely on making a business profitable together. However, if you believe that you can keep things professional, or if you are not ready to exit the business quite yet, then operating it together may be a viable option.

Can you keep your divorce from destroying your finances?

When you make the decision to get divorced from your spouse in Pennsylvania, chances are one of your first concerns is securing your finances and preparing for a future as an independent person. Because your finances can undoubtedly be shaken from the process of separating from someone you shared money with for a length of time, it is imperative that you begin making preparations right away so you can work to rebuild your financial foundation. 

Perhaps the wisest advice you may consider implementing is to avoid excessive spending at all until your divorce has been finalized and you know where you stand in terms of your finances. Likewise, keep detailed records of your spending so you can confidently answer about where your money is going. Consider creating a budget for yourself and examine your expenses to identify areas where you can cut back in an effort to save as much money as you can. 

Reviewing the factors behind the rewarding of alimony

As you enter into your divorce proceedings in Wyomissing, you may already be planning on being rewarded alimony due to your ex-spouse being in a better financial position than you are. Many that we here at Huckabee Weiler & Levengood, P.C. have the same expectation, yet are later disappointed to learn that simply not making as much money as their ex-spouse does not automatically qualify one for alimony. Spousal support is not meant to punish one for being more economically advantaged than their ex-spouse; rather, it is intended to only be a temporary source of assistance until one side of a divorced couple can enjoy the same standard of living achieved during the marriage. 

Notice how no mention is made to having a similar income as you did while married. The court cares more about you being able to support yourself rather than being able to match your previous financial position for dollar-for-dollar. Because of this, the rewarding of alimony is not automatic. Section 23.3701 of Pennsylvania's Consolidated Statutes says that the court considers several factors when determining if alimony is merited in your case. These include: 

  • Both yours and your spouse's age and overall health
  • How long your marriage lasted
  • Your current sources of income and respective earning capacities
  • Your level of education and/or the time needed to complete education or receive further vocational training
  • Whether your ability to work is impacted by your parental responsibilities 
  • Any sacrifices you may have made to further your ex-spouse's career ambitions

Is there a one-size-fits-all long-term care strategy?

Most aging individuals in Berks County and across the country would ideally like to spend their latter years living independently or together with their loved ones.

Sometimes that is possible, and sometimes it is not. The outcome depends on a number of factors, with one key determinant obviously relating to financial means.

Key differences between living trusts and wills

Setting up a living trust is one way to make sure your children or your other intended heirs receive their inheritance. However, some Pennsylvania residents still opt for a traditional last will and testament. If you find yourself debating this choice, TheStreet explains four key differences between trusts and wills. Seeing how wills and trusts can meet your particular needs can help you make an informed choice.

People who are concerned about avoiding probate might feel more comfortable with a living trust. In many cases, a will still has to proceed through the probate process before beneficiaries can receive assets from the estate. Conversely, a living trust does not go through probate, although if creditors claim portions of the estate, a trust might still find its way into court.

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Wyomissing, PA 19610

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