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Martin L Bearg

Martin Bearg’s Answers

749 total

  • Legally how much can a cable company increase their monthly fee if they provide the customer with an estimated amount of 101. 00

    I am switching over to Verizon triple play including tv, phone and internet and signed a two year contract. They are estimating monthly bill is 101.00 However, in fine prints, it says that it is an estimate. Legally, how much can they go beyond ...

    Martin’s Answer

    Mr. Popovich is correct to a point. I have never had Verizon Fios as it is not available in South Orange, but I get charged a base rate for the package, and then a separate fee for each TV remote and each cable box plus taxes that are mandated by the FCC and State.

    You should be aware that cable companies entice you to sign up and guaranty either or one or two year deal, but thereafter, can raise the price as allowed by the NJ Public Utilities Commission. You may want to call the PUC in Newark.

    Each company has a customer retention department. When the package/contract expires, call and ask to speak to a customer retention representative to have any increase eliminated or minimized.

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  • Can a Pakistani resident be made a partner in a US registered LLC company?

    This company was registered on my partners name in NJ where he is a resident. We are mutually running a company here in Lahore too but now I want my name in the partnership of the US registered company. Is it possible? I have never been to US...

    Martin’s Answer

    While I agree you can be a member of the LLC and the LLC can change its name to include yours, this can only be done if your "partner" agrees.

    The LLC changes from a single member LLC or sole proprietorship to a partnership, in which case the Federal Form 1065 has to be filed and you and your partner (co-member) need to file non-resident federal and state income tax returns.

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  • I was served a motion to enforce attorney's lien pursuant to NJSA 2A:13-5, do I need to answer the motion and oppose it now or

    do I wait until the court establishes a schedule for further proceedings. My previous attorney was incompetent and I want to refute his lien and claim for lawyers fees. Do I have to oppose immediately or wait for the court to determine a schedule?

    Martin’s Answer

    As Elizabeth Foster has implied, the failure to respond to a motion in a timely manner will cause most courts to enter a default and in favor of the moving party (you former lawyer). Lawyer's liens are not allowed in some types of matters in NJ. Not being a litigator, I cannot tell you when it is allowed. Your current attorney, unless you are representing yourself, which is never a good idea, should answer this for you. If you are in search of a substitute attorney, then advise the court and ask for 60 days to hire a new attorney.

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  • I've read that in some states, there are rules against taking estate litigation on a contingency basis. Does this apply to

    trust litigation as well? What is the rule in New Jersey? Are there other creative solutions available where the plaintiffs are poor, the trustee and the trust both have millions, and the trustee threatens to drag out his frivolous defense for y...

    Martin’s Answer

    It is truly that a contingency fee case. A contingency fee case, in the traditional sense of the term, means the attorney gets nothing if he/she does not win the case.

    In this case, assuming it is not a frivolous case, the trust has a sum of money, which is called a "fee in court." As long as the court determines there were legitimate reasons to bring the action and ask the trustee to account to the beneficiaries, the attorney bringing the action may be paid his/her fee from the "fee in court" (even assuming all assets of the trust are held by the trustee or an investment advisor.

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  • Should I use my tax returns or the tax whld table to calculate fed and state taxes whld to be reduced from my gross income?

    in reference to q # 2a from the sole parenting wksheet. I am not sure if I should used my actual income taxes withheld tax amounts or the guidelines tables as a source. If I use the tables how do I know the numbers of allowances that can we used. ...

    Martin’s Answer

    I am a tax attorney, NOT a family law attorney, but having gone through a divorce with two minors at the time, it was negotiated as part of the final judgment, that each parent would take one child as a dependent for income tax purposes, and when the eldest reached 18, we would alternate years in which we took the remaining minor as a dependent. You therefore need to see what, if anything was agreed to. You cannot assume because you pay child support that you are entitled to the deduction.

    What I can tell you is that you do not use the withholding tables to determine your estimated tax unless you are certain your are entitled to a dependency deduction for yourself and another individual.

    Any attorney, both family law and tax attorney, or a CPA can be of assistance. The safe bet is to pay the same tax you paid last year in withholding tax to avoid an underpayment penalty.

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  • Is a house an exempt property?

    My mother in law passed and left a house. My husband wants to sell his half (other half belongs to his brother) and his brother's lawyer said: "the house is exempt property; once the house is sold, then the cash becomes available to the creditors"...

    Martin’s Answer

    You are in Sunrise, FL. You did not indicate where mom's house is located. Although admitted to practice in FL, I do not, You do not indicate why there is a concern that the house is exempt. Exempt from what? Claims of a Long-term facility? Claims of the funeral home? Credit card claims? I assume my colleague from FL is correct that after death the homestead remains exempt from the claims of creditors. I thought it was an issue that a homestead could not be sold or transferred by one spouse without the consent of the other. As both mom and dad are alive, I do not know the homestead law well enough to advise if the house remains an exempt asset.

    I wish you well.

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  • What can I do?

    Was at a bar, paid the cover charge and went in with my friends for about 20 minutes. A few of us had to use the bathroom , so we stepped outside for a port-a-potty. We got our hands stamped and had every intention to return. One of my friends IDs...

    Martin’s Answer

    My colleagues may be correct, if in fact you were with a group and one of that group violated the rules of the club OR, more importantly, was underage.

    Notwithstanding this, the practical answer is that unless someone wants to be Don Qiuote and fight windmills, the amount involved is NOT worth pursuing..

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  • Can I endorse a check written to my dissolved corporation?

    I had a corporation and I recently dissolved it. I did not have any partners, I was the sole proprietor. I just received a check written to the corporation, not me. Can I deposit the check into my personal account or do I need to get it reissue...

    Martin’s Answer

    If your bank knows you it does not mean it will accept the check for deposit into your personal account. Most banks will not accept third party checks.

    You received, or should have received a tax clearance certificate from the NJ Division of Taxation and filed a final Federal 1120 or 1120S (unless it was an LLC, in which you should have reported company income and expenses on Sch C of your Form 1040. If this reflects money owed the corporation or company, that was not reported when you dissolved the business, you have a legal obligation to report its receipt and pay the taxes owed.

    You should consult an attorney or your CPA.

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  • As danish citizens, and parents to a newborn US citizen, is a standard Last Will sufficient to appoint guardian if we die in US?

    My wife and I are danish citizens living and working in New Jersey, US on our 3rd year. We became parents recently, and as our child was born in US, she is a US citizen. She has a US passport and will soon receive a danish passport. If my wife and...

    Martin’s Answer

    A "standard" will is a term as a trust and estates attorney I do not understand. A properly drafted will, acknowledging the fact you have a minor child and may have others in the future that appoints one or more persons as the legal guardian of the person and property of your minor child, or children, as the case may apply, will give you the protection you seek if G-d forbid something happens to both you and your spouse.

    You should likewise create a testamentary trust for the benefit of this minor child as a minor cannot own property and you may or may not wish to name the same guardian as the trustee of a trust for the inheritance your minor child or children receive. Some people are better nurturers than others and some are better at handling finances.

    Good luck. You should really speak with a trusts and estates attorney in or near Plainsboro. Just because an attorney says he or she drafts Wills, does not mean their practice is appropriate as you and your wife are not U.S. citizens, and special planning is needed to avoid tax on the first death.

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  • If I disclaim a NJ trust which has no connection to an estate, must I submit the notarized disclaimer document to the court

    for its approval? If so, which court? Am I obligated to send the disclaimer to the trustee only when the court approves it, or must I send it to the trustee at the same time as I send it to the court?

    Martin’s Answer

    If this is a trust that is not part of an estate, there is no docket# or file in the Surrogate's office or the Superior Court of NJ to file the disclaimer. The statute mandates that it be delivered to the executor of an estate or the trustee of a trust.

    You can disclaim your right to assets at any time under NJ law, BUT if executed after 9 months after the assets have vested in you, filing a disclaimer causes you to have made a gift. If filed prior to the gift/assets vesting in you, which varies depending on the nature of the trust and your interest iin the trust, avoids a Federal Gift being made.

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