Skip to main content
Matthew Gordon Brown

Matthew Brown’s Answers

5 total

  • Legal way to divert inheritance check to others that would hold the inheritor harmless in the eyes of the IRS?

    Can you simply gift an inheritance to another without receiving any of it and be free of being perceived as diverting funds to avoid paying it to taxes? An Attorney interprets a Will in a certain way. Is it wise to ask for another interpretation?...

    Matthew’s Answer

    You have two good answers already. Definitely a qualified disclaimer. Don't lose sight of the nine month deadline, and hire a competent estate planning attorney. This is not a do-it-yourself task.

    See question 
  • Just started a SMLLC and have decided for tax purposes I would like to transfer ownership to my spouse.

    The business has very little assets and is not even operating yet. It would be great if someone can point me in the right direction on how to begin. Also if we do go through with this will my EIN change? Thanks in advance

    Matthew’s Answer

    Your EIN will not change. Also, you have the option of continuing to treat the LLC as a SMLLC or as a partnership for tax purposes if just your spouse owns the remaining interest. As to transferring interests, you just need to prepare a membership transfer document. Your state may also require that something be recorded with the secretary of state.

    Hire a good business/tax lawyer as soon as you can afford one. Some of the most painful decisions long-term are bad choice-of-entity decisions made in the early stages of a business. You also need to meet with a good business/tax lawyer at least annually to ensure you stay compliant and to identify future opportunities before you miss them. Just like going to the dentist for a checkup and a cleaning.

    See question 
  • My older sister is the executor of my mom's estate and she may be terminally ill

    My Dad died about 10 years ago. There is my older sister and I and we live in the New London area of Connecticut. My Mom died in July and my sister is the executor. The attorney is the same one that my parents used for years. My sister was rec...

    Matthew’s Answer

    You used the term executor, which suggests a will is involved (the office would be that of trustee if this were a trust). In many wills and/or trusts, there is a provision that provides for trustee succession in the event of incapacity. Take a look at the document to determine who the successor trustee is and how incapacity is proven. Some documents require two doctors' letters. But you cannot force your sister to be examined, so that standard doesn't help. Other documents provide that if the successor trustee or any beneficiary requests that the acting trustee provide proof of capacity that the acting trustee must provide two doctors' letters within 15 days or is deemed removed. If that or a similar structure is available, you need to paper such a process very carefully so you can take the paper trail to any institution to convince them of who the new trustee is. As to the family business, take a close look at who holds voting control over the business operations. It may not necessarily be the executor/trustee.

    See question 
  • What can I do with a father who has diagnosed dementia and his lawyer who is seemingly unethically protecting him?

    My brother's lawyer is seemingly uninterested in protecting him from a father with dementia, who has accused him stealing from his accounts. My brother has full power of attorney, but has not used it outside the parameters of handling my fathers ...

    Matthew’s Answer

    Perhaps your brother who holds the power of attorney needs to get involved and take control of Dad's accounts. I suggest you contact an elder care consultant who can help evaluate Dad's mental capacity and make recommendations for changes. I don't know any in your area, but LivHome might have some folks nearby who could help. Your brother who holds the power of attorney may have the power to file a complain against the lawyer with the California state bar association.

    See question 
  • My sister & brother took my mom (who had dementia) to a lawyer & removed my name as co-POA/exec. She passed away. What can I do?

    My sister & brother, I think, have been abusing the money in her accts. since & before) my mom passed away. They didn't open an estate acct. till more than 3 mos. after her death. Their names were on her bank accts. as co-owners (more manipulation...

    Matthew’s Answer

    Before you can craft an inexpensive approach, if ever, you need to gather more facts. I suggest you research what Virginia law requires them to provide to you and when (copy of will/trust and/or accounting or will/trust inventory). Then send them a letter requesting whatever you are entitled to. If they do not cooperate, you will probably need a lawyer to file a petition in probate court to ask the judge to force their cooperation in providing the requested information. If they were stealing from your Mom during her lifetime, there may be criminal statutes for elder abuse that apply. And of course their mistreatment of her might lead to a conclusion that, if the inheritance structure favors them, that there was some amount of fraud or undue influence and/or that Mom lacked capacity to take certain actions.

    See question