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Karen L Brady

Karen Brady’s Answers

60 total


  • How to add your child to your real estate

    How do you add your son to your properties so the parents and the son share ownership

    Karen’s Answer

    As Attorney Fromm mentions, there are some serious consequences in adding your child as an owner on your real estate. In addition to possible gift taxes, there may also be income tax consequences for your son after you pass away. When you give your son ownership interest while you are alive, he loses a "step up" in basis in that interest that he would otherwise get if he inherits it when you die. That could mean additional capital gains taxes when your son sells the property.

    Also, if your son is a co-owner of your property and he becomes divorced or faces financial problems, you could find yourself a joint owner with a former daughter-in-law or one of your son's creditors. You could even be forced to sell in order for his debts to be satisfied.

    Depending on how you title the property, if your son dies before you do his interest in the property could pass to his heirs and you might be co-owner with his wife or children.

    Some or all of these concerns can be resolved but you need a knowledgeable attorney to help you navigate all of these issues successfully.

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  • Are freelancers that have LLCs more risky to hire than freelancers that have set up Corporations?

    My company thinks that freelancers with LLCs are not valid business vendors. The work that the freelancers would do is office based and involves computers. What would be the risk to the client company of hiring a freelancer with an LLC as opposed ...

    Karen’s Answer

    Sole member limited liability companies can be taxed as sole proprietorships or corporations. When taxed as sole proprietorships, the LLC may operate under the members social security number. It occurs to me that your company may want to deal only with vendors that are taxed as corporations with separate EINs. Your company may believe that this will strengthen the argument that the freelancers are not employees but instead are independent contractors. I don't think I share your company's concern, but I can imagine the basis for it.

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  • Case point of law - probate?

    In GA - My significant other passed without an executed will. She had a will generated on Legal Zoom and received her hard copy but was unable to sign prior to her passing. Georgia recognizes "common wills". Should it not be possible to argue tha...

    Karen’s Answer

    I'm very sorry for your loss. While I am not licensed to practice law in Georgia, general principles of law lead me to conclude that your analogy to a "typed" signature is not really applicable here, as you point out that the will was not signed in any form. Having a will prepared is not the same as executing a will. Executing a will is the way to demonstrate that it reflects your wishes. Many people have a will drafted, even by attorneys, that they never sign because they decide it doesn't reflect their wishes.

    Nevertheless, I suggest you contact a local probate attorney, as he or she may be able to tell you about exemptions or joint property laws that may benefit you.

    Good luck.

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  • Is it necessary to probate a will in Mi?

    Do you have to probate a will? What does it mean to probate a will?

    Karen’s Answer

    To probate a will means to present it to the court to have the court accept its terms and appoint a personal representative to carry it out. You haven't presented enough facts to know if it is necessary to probate the will. Generally, in order to collect and transfer probate assets of a deceased person you would need to have the will probated. Some assets are not probate assets, such as life insurance payable to a beneficiary. In some instances, if there is no real estate and the estate is not worth very much, you can avoid probating the will and collect property via a small estate affidavit. If you search the legal guides here on Avvo for Michigan then you will find some guides on what is not probate property and some information on the probate process.

    Even if the will does not need to be probated, many states require that if you have possession of the will of someone who has died you are required present it to the court in the county where the dead person lived.

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  • As a buyer what are my options?

    I am purchasing an ATV. The seller still owes for the ATV and he wants a cashiers check in his name. He is providing us with a bill of sell however I feel uncomfortable making the check out to him rather than where he owes for the ATV. What are...

    Karen’s Answer

    Your concerns are justified. Even with a bill of sale, the seller can't sell you what he doesn't own, i.e. the full value of the ATV. If you purchase the ATV from him, you will take it subject to the loan. If the loan isn't paid off, the lender would be entitled to repossess the ATV, even with your bill of sale. The better route is to have him provide you with the payoff amount on the ATV in writing from the lender, then make the check to the lender and send it with instructions from the seller to send you the title. If you have agreed to pay the seller more than he owes on the ATV, you can provide him with a separate check -- perhaps AFTER you have gotten the title.

    Good luck.

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  • Is this contract binding? What can be done?

    I brought into a jewelry club which stated if you purchase 5 jewelry items, you get the 6th on free. The brochure states you must save your receipts, you can purchase your jewelry items at your convenience, and there is NO EXPIRATION DATE! I sta...

    Karen’s Answer

    In my view, the biggest hurdles you are going to face is the statute of limitations and a concept called laches. Both of these make it hard to bring a successful suit when there is a long period of time between the cancellation of the club and your initiation of action. It sounds like you weren't provided notice of the cancellation, but that might not be a fact on your side if you moved or it was otherwise not possible for them to give notice. A local attorney may be able to tell you whether your facts provide some way to overcome those hurdles, but you'll have to evaluate whether the cost of getting legal assistance is worth whatever rights you would have had under the contract.

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  • Sucession hearing in Italy.Do we need an international lawyer to not accept the inheritance-give shares to family there

    Myself,sister,and brother have been contacted about a sucession hearing in Italy involving the death of our Aunt. She died without a will and are included as heirs. We would like our share divided among Aunts and Uncles in Italy. What legal action...

    Karen’s Answer

    There are lawyers here in the United States that can help with Italian succession issues. If you can't find any here on Avvo you can find some information at www.italianlaw.net.

    Good luck.

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  • Deceased brothers back taxes and how they effect beneficiary on 401 K

    My brother died 3 months ago. I received a notice in the mail telling me I am a non spousal beneficiary on a 401 K plan of his. He set this up prior to getting married a year ago so that I would slowly distribute it to his children instead of them...

    Karen’s Answer

    First, you may not be the one entitled to receive the proceeds.

    Federal and state law may provide that your brother's surviving wife is entitled to some or all of the 401(k) unless she waived her rights to it. In your place, I would not sign the forms from the plan administrator. Instead, I would inform them of his marriage and inquire as to whether they have a spousal waiver on file.

    Second, if you do receive the proceeds and your brother's tax debts go unpaid, you may be held liable under a theory of "fiduciary liability."

    A local attorney versed in retirement benefits and taxes can help sort this out for you.

    Good luck.

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  • Paying for a vehicle and I'm not on the title

    My situtation: I am purchasing a vehicle from a 'friend' for the past 3 yrs I've paid $240 ea & every month....she in turns makes the payments to the bank. The reason that we have this agreement is too long winded.... BUT, I have reason to belie...

    Karen’s Answer

    I would expect the lending company to be able to repossess the car if she stops making payments. You may have a claim against her if the car is taken from you. In any case, I urge you to contact a local attorney who specializes in civil matters because you have a lot of issues here, including the need to (a) refinance the loan or otherwise get the lender to recognize your rights in the car and (b) get a written contract with her so that your rights as they relate to her are clarified and (c) make sure that your car insurance isn't invalidated because you are regularly driving a car that doesn't belong to you.

    Good luck.

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  • Can a non-lawyer signed as "notary public" in a non compete agreement representing the employer?

    In 2007,I signed a non compete agreement in Florida with our office manager signing representing my employer with her stamped as "Notary public" although she is not a lawyer by profession. Is this ground to invalidate the contract or is this legal?

    Karen’s Answer

    A notary public need not be a lawyer. A notary public applies to the Florida Secretary of State for this designation. If she was a notary public, the fact that she is not a lawyer does not invalidate the contract. Even if she wasn't a notary public, that by itself would likely not invalidate the contract.

    You may have other grounds to contest the non compete agreement, but you won't know unless you contact a local lawyer with expertise in these agreements.

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