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By 7017527906 01 Nov, 2017

An old proverb in the legal profession amongst practitioners in estate planning is that we can guarantee, without doubt, you will pass. I hope you all live a long, happy, healthy life. I also hope you always have your affairs in order.

POTENTIAL PROBLEM: Our new digital era is not without problems. If you are a person that does most of your financial transactions electronically, your personal representative could have a most difficult time handling your affairs. It would be almost impossible to know what bills to pay, what bank you keep your funds, if you have life insurance, and so on and so on. Many companies are becoming strictly digital, such as Sprint, and you have no choice other than to pay bills online.

TRUST: Do you trust anyone enough to give them all of your passwords to all of your accounts and financial affairs for safekeeping?

SOLUTION: Consider making a paper copy of the latest transaction for every financial account, debt holder, or other transaction you typically do online. Write the passwords needed for access. Store the information in a safe deposit box, or other secure area you know can become accessible. You can even make it only accessible with a Court Order upon your death or incapacity.

PPPPP: As I always say, proper planning prevents poor performance . The best time to plan is when you don’t need to be in a rush. Scrambling days prior to a vacation, or surgery, is not the best time to address these matters.

Estate planning is to better serve those you leave behind, give you peace of mind, and to ensure an easy transfer of assets the way you intend. You can determine many things such as how and where you wish to be laid to rest. I often advise people to consider making a draft of their obituary the way they would like it to read. With proper estate planning you can maximize the value of your gifts and protect what your loved ones should receive. Properly prepared, your good intentions will live long after you pass.

Competent estate planning does not have to be unaffordable. For those who are not able to travel to meet us to assist with your estate planning we are able to provide service through confidential email or regular mail. Costs for simple estate plans can be as low as $350.00. We also prepare Living Revocable Trusts and help create an estate plan to suit your individual needs to minimize tax issues and potential creditor issues.  

You must know your rights. At the Gani Law Firm we have represented many individuals in a wide variety of Estate, criminal, and civil matters all over the State of Michigan. The Gani Law Firm is located at 1005 S. Washington Avenue in Lansing, Michigan. Please call Sal Gani at 517-372-8944 or email us at sal@ganilaw.com if you have any questions.

Disclaimer : The information you obtain at this site is not, nor is it intended to be, legal advice. You should consult an attorney for advice regarding your individual situation. We invite you to contact us and welcome your calls, letters, and electronic mail. Reviewing this information or contacting us alone does not create an attorney-client relationship. Please do not send any information to us until such time as an attorney-client relationship has been established. You should not rely upon any information as legal advice.

By 7017527906 10 Oct, 2017

The prevailing opinion pursuant to Michigan law is that engagement rings are considered as a conditional gift offered in contemplation of marriage. The problem of determining ownership may vary depending on whether one of the parties claims ownership before or after the wedding. It is unfortunate that there is no distinct case law in Michigan which provides an absolute answer to every question.

Before Marriage

 When you are provided a proposal of marriage and you say “yes,” it is usually followed by an offer of an engagement ring. The ring is a conditional gift. Assume it is worth $10,000.00 for sake of argument. If you said “no” to the proposal, would you still expect to be given the ring?

The prevailing opinion is that because the ring is a conditional gift, the ring should be returned to the donor upon breaking the engagement. The condition upon which you accepted the ring was the completion of the offer, that being marriage. It is like a contract. An offer is made, and upon acceptance, the ring is placed on your finger. Your return promise of “yes” means you have an obligation to meet your obligation of getting married. If the person that received the ring decided not to marry, the conditional gift should be returned. The contract is completed only upon marriage.

After Marriage

 Once you marry, the conditional gift of giving and accepting the ring is completed. Once you fulfill your obligation, shouldn’t you be entitled to keep the gift as your very own?

 Now the problem arises. If there is a divorce filing, should the $10,000.00 ring be considered as marital property? Should the $10,000.00 ring be the spouse’s separate property and not subject to division?

 For the most part, one would argue that the ring becomes the separate property of the spouse that received the ring. You were made a promise by the giving party that the ring is yours if you marry. You married. The ring should rightfully be yours to keep as your separate property.

 The leading case in Michigan is Meyer v Mitnick, 244 Mich App 697 (2001). In this case, the parties were engaged. Ms. Mitnick, the soon to be wife, refused to sign a prenuptial agreement. The marriage was called off. When Ms. Mitnick refused to return the ring, Mr. Meyer sued for its return. The Court ruled the ring should be returned to Mr. Meyer. The case was appealed. The Court of Appeals held the ring was a gift in contemplation of marriage. If the engagement is called off for any reason, the gift is not capable of becoming a completed gift and it must be returned to the donor.

 It must be noted that two people can enter into a written agreement to determine ownership in the event of a break-up.

 

Disclaimer : The information you obtain at this site is not, nor is it intended to be, legal advice. You should consult an attorney for advice regarding your individual situation. We invite you to contact us and welcome your calls, letters, and electronic mail. Reviewing this information or contacting us alone does not create an attorney-client relationship. Please do not send any information to us until such time as an attorney-client relationship has been established. You should not rely upon any information as legal advice.

 

By lawofficeo89441385 24 May, 2017
In August 2016, the Michigan Domestic Personal Protection Order (PPO) statute was amended to allow Courts to include provisions to protect animals belonging to victims of domestic violence. The Courts may restrain a person from injuring, neglect, removing the animal from the victim, or possessing the animal against the will of the victim. The law also defined the term “ownership interest” in order to provide the protection needed.The term “animal” refers to any animal, whether it’s the person’s fish, cat, dog, pig, or even livestock. Many people have therapy pets or pets to assist those with disabilities. Laws come about due to a societal need. An article was published not long ago with research showing that 99% of Americans consider their pet to be a member of their family. It revealed that with families characterized by domestic violence, up to 87% of animal cruelty acts were committed in the presence of abused women, and 25% were committed in the presence of children. The impact of such violence cannot be underestimated. The connection between domestic violence and animal abuse is now recognized by law. When abusive partners target a helpless animal, they inflict not only pain to the animal, but long-lasting emotional damage to every other family member.For anyone interested in learning more about this topic, or for a list of sources, please refer to our web page to review an article written by Robert Mendham published in the Michigan Family Law Journal. You must know your rights. At the Gani Law Firm we have represented many individuals in a wide variety of criminal and civil matters. The Gani Law Firm is located at 1005 S. Washington Avenue in Lansing, Michigan. Please call Sal Gani at 517-372-8944 if you have any questions. Disclaimer: The information you obtain at this site is not, nor is it intended to be, legal advice. You should consult an attorney for advice regarding your individual situation. We invite you to contact us and welcome your calls, letters, and electronic mail. Reviewing this information or contacting us alone does not create an attorney-client relationship. Please do not send any information to us until such time as an attorney-client relationship has been established. You should not rely upon any information as legal advice.
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