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Freya A Shoffner

Freya Shoffner’s Answers

99 total


  • I want to provide services using Voice-over-IP (VOIP). Do I need an International 214 License from the FCC?

    I want to provide services using Voice-over-IP (VOIP). Do I need an International 214 License from the FCC?

    Freya’s Answer

    If you mean international calling services then the answer is: Yes. It is against the law to offer or even to advertise international calling services without a 214 License from the FCC. Keep in mind that the 214 license is just one of the regulations that a new provider must comply with before starting up in the telecommunications marketplace.

    Setting up a telecommunications business is not something you should attempt to do on your own. Every cent that you spend in working with a qualified attorney in your jurisdiction will be well spent.

    This answer is not intended to provide specific legal advice. No attorney client relationship between you and Shoffner & Associates or any of its attorneys is established, intended ,or implied. This answer should not be used as a substitute for competent legal advice from a licensed attorney in your jurisdiction regarding your particular situation. Any advice contained in this answer is not intended to be used and cannot be used by any taxpayer for the purpose of avoiding Federal tax penalties that may be imposed on the taxpayer.

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  • Can an E2 investor have a local business partner?

    Can an E2 investor who is more that 50% owner of the business, have other people invest in his/her business also to expand and create more jobs for US citizens?

    Freya’s Answer

    You have not provided enough facts to allow an answer to you question. You would be well advised to consult with an attorney in your area who is well-versed in the parameters for investment with an E2 Visa and who can take the time to understand fully your goals and the approach you plan to take.

    This may be considered advertising under the ethical rules of certain jurisdictions, is provided with the understanding that it does not constitute the rendering of legal advice or other professional advice by Shoffner & Associates or its attorneys, nor does it establish an attorney-client relationship..

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  • What is the best way to turn a summer home over to my children. Sell it to them for $0 or sell it myself and divide the money.

    My husband and I are elderly and my husband health is failing. I want to be sure my daughters get the summer home.

    Freya’s Answer

    Attorney Barriera makes a good point which is, there are quite a number of factors to be considered before determining which is the best method to use. However, simply making a gift of the house by selling it for $0.00 is rarely the best method. The first problem is the capital gains issue, which is especially complicated this year. The second problem is that making a gift like that, as Attorney Barriera mentioned, can cause significant issues with a Medicaid application.

    The best thing that you can do is to sit down with an attorney who focuses on estate planning, tax, and elder issues. The attorney will obtain a complete picture of your current situation and your goals, and then will recommend the best approach. And, many attorneys who practice in these areas are willing to make "house calls."

    If you have additional questions, please feel free to call me at 617-369-0111.

    This answer is not intended to provide specific legal advice. No attorney client relationship between you and Shoffner & Associates or any of its attorneys is established, intended ,or implied. This answer should not be used as a substitute for competent legal advice from a licensed attorney in your jurisdiction regarding your particular situation. Any advice contained in this communication is not intended to be used and cannot be used by any taxpayer for the purpose of avoiding Federal tax penalties that may be imposed on the taxpayer.

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  • I am an indian of the Sioux nation. Is my property on the reservation subject to federal estate taxes when I die?

    I own cash and real estate worth more than $5 million dollars. My house and many tangible personal belongings are situated on the reservation. I also own real estate off the reservation. Should I be worried about possible federal estate taxes at...

    Freya’s Answer

    In 2010 there is no federal estate tax, however under the current law, the tax is scheduled to re-appear for those dying in 2011. Unless the law is changed, those with estates in excess of $1Million will be subject to an estate tax. In general, you are subject to both income and estate tax, although there are some exceptions and limitations. The first link below summarizes the current income tax treatment for Indian tribes and enrolled members of Indian tribes.

    IRS Revenue Ruling. 69-164, 1969-1 C.B. 220, concluded that the gross estate of a deceased Native American excludes the value of certain property held under Section 5 of the General Allotment Act of 1887 including trust lands acquired either in the original allotment or by inheritance; original and inherited headrights; mineral headright income derived from royalties held in trust by the U.S. Government; and trust fund cash directly derived from allotted lands. See also, Asenap v. United States, et.al., 283 F. Supp. 566 (W.D. Okla 1968). The second link will bring you to a recent letter ruling on this issue, and the third will bring you to a case regarding the application of this exemption.

    There are very important limitations to these exemptions from the federal gross estate, and your state may have a different structure for taxing the estates of resident Native Americans. You should be certain to consult with an attorney in your jurisdiction who is competent in estate planning and who is very familiar with the tax laws regarding Indian nations and their members.

    This answer is not intended to provide specific legal advice. No attorney client relationship between you and Shoffner & Associates or any of its attorneys is established, intended ,or implied. This answer should not be used as a substitute for competent legal advice from a licensed attorney in your jurisdiction regarding your particular situation. Any advice contained in this e-mail is not intended to be used and cannot be used by any taxpayer for the purpose of avoiding Federal tax penalties that may be imposed on the taxpayer.

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  • Declaration of Homestead.

    I recently lost my husband and am in the process of changing my will, beneficiary's, etc. While in the process of drawing a new will, my Atty. checked on my Homestead filing. I filed this Homestead back in 2007 myself. My husband died in Dec. 20...

    Freya’s Answer

    My condolences on the loss of your husband. Dealing with all of the details that come up so soon after such a loss is always a challenge. Your question does not state whether you and your husband were over the age of 62 when your filed the Declaration of Homestead, and I will assume that you were not.

    If one spouse or both spouses are under the age of 62 at the time of the filing of a Declaration of Homestead, only one spouse can file. And, upon the death of the spouse who filed the Declaration, the estate of Homestead continues for the benefit of the surviving spouse. So, if you had filed a valid Declaration of Homestead for your husband that protection would continue after his death.

    In general, the real property or manufactured home which serves as an individual’s principal residence upon filing a Declaration of Homestead, shall be protected against subsequent attachment, levy on execution or sale to satisfy debts to the extent of five hundred thousand dollars ($500,000) per residence, per family. A Declaration will not protect the equity from governmental claims, the claims of a mortgage holder, or debts that were acquired before the Homestead was recorded.

    However, a Declaration of Homestead must make a proper reference to the title. Therefore, if you did not file the Declaration of Homestead with the proper Book & Page numbers it may not be valid and therefore, your husband's creditors may have a valid claim against the property.

    The links below provide both general information about the Homestead Act and a copy of the statute itself.

    I strongly suggest that you work with an attorney in your area who is qualified in both real estate and probate matters to resolve this issue.

    This answer is not intended to provide specific legal advice. No attorney client relationship between you and Shoffner & Associates or any of its attorneys is established, intended ,or implied. This answer should not be used as a substitute for competent legal advice from a licensed attorney in your jurisdiction regarding your particular situation.

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  • My husband refuses to leave and is contesting divorce. How do I get him out?

    I have filed for divorce. My husband refuses to leave our home (which is my family home). We have a 4 yo. He's contesting everything from custody to assets. We have no equity in house. I believe he's conducting illegal activities on computer; he h...

    Freya’s Answer

    If you consulted an attorney to help you file the divorce, I strongly suggest that you return to him or to her with your questions. Divorce can be a very upsetting process and the technicalities of the process often make matters worse.

    You can bring a Motion before the Court asking for an Order to Vacate under Massachusetts General Laws Chapter 208 Section 34B. The Court will grant the Order (and your husband will have to leave the home) if the judge finds that having him stay in the home would substantially impair your, or your child's, health, safety, or welfare. The Order lasts for 90 days and it can be extended. I've provided a link to the specific Massachusetts General Law with this answer.

    Whenever a couple files for divorce in Massachusetts, the welfare of the child or children becomes the Court's primary concern, and often the parent who does not provide the day-to-day care is the one who vacates the home.

    If you did not consult an attorney prior to filing the divorce, I strongly suggest that you do so now. If your funds are limited, there are resources such as the Volunteer Lawyers Project, that may be of assistance to you. The Bristol County Probate and Family Court website (link below) can provide you with some initial information.

    This answer does not constitute legal advice, nor does it establish an attorney/client relationship of any kind.

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  • What is the best way to handle small estate?

    My Mom is 87 and has a will that was signed by both her and my Dad when he was alive, estate should be equally divided between all 5 children. The estate including house is probably worth $75,000. Does my Mom need another will just in her name? Sh...

    Freya’s Answer

    You don't mention whether your mother also lives in Oklahoma, and the state of her residence will make a difference in how your question is answered. The smartest thing to do is to consult a qualified estate planning lawyer who practices where your mother lives. Many attorneys do not charge for the initial consultation, and the advice you will receive could be invaluable.

    To get started, if your mother does live in Oklahoma, I suggest you consult the information about the probate process that is published by the Oklahoma Bar Association through the link provided here.

    This answer does not constitute the provision of legal advice nor does it establish an attorney/client relationship of any kind.

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  • Can husband's ex wife sue for his life insurance?

    When my husband passed away, he left me a $25,000 life insurance policy. We have a son from our marriage, and he has 2 teenage kids from a previous marriage. His ex is threatening to sue me for a portion of his life insurance, presumably for her c...

    Freya’s Answer

    The short answer is - your husband's ex-wife has no rights to the insurance policy. I am basing this statement on the assumption that you were named the sole beneficiary of the policy. Your right to receive the proceeds are based on the contract that your husband made with the insurance company, and his ex-wife's claims have no effect on that contract.

    The issue of post-mortem support is resolved by the terms of the agreement or judgment that was issued by the court where they divorced. However, the ex-wife will have no claim against you or any assets that you hold in your name alone.

    As for his children. They will have a claim for a share of your husband's probate estate.

    Because your situation is a bit complex, I strongly recommend that you consult with an attorney in your area who practices in the areas of probate litigation and family law. That attorney will be able to tell you the best way to proceed.

    This answer is not intended to provide specific legal advice. No attorney client relationship between you and Shoffner & Associates or any of its attorneys is established, intended ,or implied. This answer should not be used as a substitute for competent legal advice from a licensed attorney in your jurisdiction regarding your particular situation.

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  • My husband wants to get a divorce and wants to give me the house. Should I do a quick deed befo

    He also wants to continue to pay thee mortage, taxes and condo fee.The marriage lasted 25 years and I am wondering if I would be able to get other assistants on top of that. I don't work, I don't drive and I am aproching the age of 60.

    Freya’s Answer

    In Massachusetts the assets of a marriage are divided equitably, not necessarily equally, between the parties. And, in some situations one spouse is ordered to pay support (alimony) to the other spouse. Before you make any agreement with your husband you should make a careful inventory of all of the marital assets (don't forget insurance and retirement), the debts, the current income, and any changes that you expect to occur either in income (for example, retirement) or assets (for example, an expected inheritance.) Next, obtain a copy of your marriage license (from your town hall) and make a list of all of the questions that you have about divorce.

    Then, you should consult an attorney who is qualified and who practices family law in your area. Be sure to bring your inventory, your marriage license, and your list of questions to the meeting. Your attorney will be able to ensure that you manage the divorce process with the minimum discomfort and financial risk.

    This answer is not intended to provide specific legal advice. No attorney client relationship between you and Shoffner & Associates or any of its attorneys is established, intended ,or implied. This answer should not be used as a substitute for competent legal advice from a licensed attorney in your jurisdiction regarding your particular situation.

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  • Is it possible to contest only one part of a will and have all other parts go forward?

    Person that died had will for many years but in the last few weeks of life decided to not leave to one person a specific part of his money. He made this clear to several people including the executor but did not have time to change the will.

    Freya’s Answer

    Attorney Golden makes four very good points. First, you must follow the rules for objecting to a will very carefully. Second, you must be able to prove that the will does not reflect the testator's intent. Her third point is quite important, litigation over a will can be extremely expensive for all involved. Her fourth point, however, is most important. Your question deserves the attention of a qualified attorney in the jurisdiction where the decedent resided, who has solid experience in probate litigation (will contests.) You should be prepared to bring a copy of the will and any other evidence that you have in your possession to the meeting.

    This answer is not intended to provide specific legal advice. No attorney client relationship between you and Shoffner & Associates or any of its attorneys is established, intended ,or implied. This answer should not be used as a substitute for competent legal advice from a licensed attorney in your jurisdiction regarding your particular situation.

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