Category: Law

5 Advantages of Outsourcing Benefits Administration

Law

If you run or manage your own business, you’re always looking for ways to cut costs and improve productivity. With so many administrative tasks to keep track of, a lot of business owners are turning to ASO (Administrative Services Only) companies for assistance. Here are a few reasons why this could work to your advantage.

1. Streamline Your HR

By shifting your benefits management to another company, you can have a leaner HR department. Why have your human resource specialists deal with the most mundane administrative tasks, when you can have them work on more targeted projects to better serve you and your employees?

2. ASOs Have Their Own Professionals

When you sign an administrative services only contract, that means you’re getting professionals trained in skills precisely attuned to your business. Experts charged with the tasks of keeping up with the arcane changes in laws and regulations that come with running a small business can be far too expensive to hire as employees. Letting an ASO provide their own experts alleviates that problem.

3. Cut out the Busy Work

A lot of time, money, and effort is spent every day just administering to the simple task of keeping the company running. Better to let outside parties tend to those issues, so you can have your employees – the ones you chose for their talents and creativity – do what they were trained to do. Anything that moves your workers away from the simplest bureaucratic work associated with their jobs is a boost in productivity.

4. Prevents Liability

The outsourcing company takes it upon themselves to make sure you’re complying with all laws and regulations. This offers a shield to the company in the event something goes wrong, while spending effort and expense to handle these tasks yourself only exposes the company to increased risk.

5. Advanced Technology

When you run your own benefits administration, it’s up to you to keep up with the latest trends. Not only does that mean trends in benefits and how they’re administered, but in how they interact with the employees. That means you have to have a website in place, and people on board to maintain and respond to inquiries. Letting another company take care of benefits-oriented website relieves you of a tremendous burden.

With all these advantages and more, ASO (Administrative Services Only) contracts are quickly becoming the fastest and easiest way for a company to increase its productivity.

 

 

Ceramic Light Switch Plates Complete the Look of Any Room

Law

Interior design isn’t just for people with a fashion degree anymore. Do-it-yourself room décor is all the rage. With access to a myriad of designing apps available with the touch of a finger, transforming any room of your home is easy.

You put time and energy into your choices. You research your target look, and take care to match wall colors, floor textures, and wall colors to create a seamless effect. Finish the look with decorative light switch plates in ceramic style. They come in variety of finishes and access options.

Toggle Wall Plates

This is a basic wall plate with an “up – down” switch. Walk into any room of a modern home and chances are you’ll find these style light switch plates in at least a few of the rooms. The toggle plate is timeless for its simplicity. Pick the finish that matches the room and you truly can’t make a wrong choice.

Dimmer Wall Plates

Homeowners are choosing dimmer switches at a rapidly increasing rate. This style plate features one large, vertical, rectangular shaped void to match the motion of your dimmer switch. Dimmers are particularly popular in dining rooms and bedrooms, as children often dislike sleeping in the pitch black.

Duplex Wall Plates

This style of decorative ceramic switch plates fits your standard three prong plug. They are available in sets of two and four. It is important to be sure you installed a ground fault interrupter (GFI) outlet if you intent to use multiple wall plates in a small space. Think of it as a built-in surge strip.

Jack Plates

Home and business both use many jack-based services.

  • TV cable jack
  • HDMI direct cable
  • Router jack
  • Phone jack
  • Cell phone charging cords

Jack plates are specifically designed so you can plug in and charge any number of devices and services without needing any type of adapter.

Mix and Match

Each room will come with its own set of outlet needs. Choose from a variety of mix and match wall plates to allow you best access to all your plug-in needs simultaneously.

Finish Options

Decorative ceramic switch plates are available in base colors to match most color schemes.

  • Ceramic white
  • Ceramic biscuit (tan)
  • Ceramic black

If you wish to be add a bit more panache to your room you can opt for something fancier.

  • Steel
  • Bronze
  • Copper
  • Chrome
  • Brass
  • Stone
  • Glass
  • Nickel
  • Designs, including kids

Whether you are remodeling a kitchen, building an office, or putting together a nursery, choose decorative light switch plates in ceramic style to complement your décor.

 

 

Advice From A Tax Attorney: Should I Prepay My Property Taxes?

Law

Across the country, homeowners have been scrambling to ask, “Should I prepay my property taxes?” In light of the new tax laws that President Trump has signed into being, many are wondering if it is a wise move to prepay the taxes or wait.

According to the IRS, you may wish to wait before you pay your property taxes. The tax bill that was signed into effect sharply limits the itemized deductions that are allowed while it also raises the standard deductions for both couples as well as individuals.

This has led many homeowners, especially those who are in a higher tax bracket and in more affluent areas, to scramble to prepay their taxes before some of the deductions disappear. However, in the advisory notice that has been posted on the IRS website, while this may work well for some, it may only work well under certain limited circumstances.

In order for many of the deductions to work, the property taxes must be paid not only in 2017, they must also be fully assessed in 2017. Thus, if the homeowners are paying on the estimated assessments and attempting to pay for a few years in advance, it may not work out so well for them. All that has been achieved in many of these instances is that the homeowner is providing an interest-free loan to the government.

It’s unclear at this point in time, how many homeowners have attempted to prepay their taxes. Hundreds of people were lined up to prepay their property taxes in Fairfax, Virginia alone. There were other communities that have long lines of people just waiting to pay their taxes.

Many states are encouraging the residents to attempt to skirt the cap on the local and state tax deductions. Many are unsure of which route is best for them. It’s a conundrum to be sure. Will the homeowners save more money by prepaying? Or will they save more money by waiting?

The guidance from the IRS isn’t a legal decision, it’s merely a suggestion. In fact, the IRS didn’t define the meaning of what they meant by “tax assessed”. This may be the most important question. The property tax schedules will vary from one state to the next and even from one county to the next. Many states have sent out their tax assessment for 2018. If the payments aren’t yet due, most of the homeowners who are prepaying will be entitled to some deductions under the rules of 2017.

Still, other states have yet to start the assessment process for 2018. Prepaying in such areas won’t do any special favors to these homeowners, in fact, they may wind up missing out entirely on their best deductions if they prepay.

At present, it’s still uncertain how this will be treated by the IRS. It will be dependent on the particular state where the homeowners reside. In some instances, it may be something that they hope they can get back in court. There are many variables that must be considered.

It’s important that people are aware of the ramifications of prepayment if they’re not getting all of their deductions. It may fast become an administrative headache if it’s not kept track of. The IRS is scrambling to clarify the 2018 tax prepayment options and cautions taxpayers that some things may no longer be accepted as deductibles.

The prepayment of anticipated property taxes that haven’t been assessed before 2018, can’t be evaluated on the 2017 assessment. For those who are on the fence, or patiently waiting in those long lines to pay their taxes, there are some important things to keep in mind.

Alternative minimum tax or AMT is an alternative method of calculating the taxes to ensure that the taxpayers have paid out a minimum tax rate of the 26 percent to 28 percent that is required. They must pay the required minimum to keep them current. This will also be variable as they are working off of an assessment that may or may not be up to date.

States such as New York or New Jersey, where the taxes are higher, are more likely to own the AMT. This is due to the fact that they are disallowed in the state and local taxes. Prepaying the taxes won’t help to reduce the tax bill. The AMT will go up for each penny that it is reduced. It’s not truly a penny saved.

If the bill isn’t yet in your hand for the 2018 season, you’re not able to do the deductions yet as it hasn’t been assessed. It’s not going to do you any good in these situations either. According to the IRS, you can’t pay and deduct for 2017 if it hasn’t been assessed. Thus, it’s a bad financial move to even consider prepaying the taxes. They may be assessed far lower, or higher than what was paid and the money may not always be refundable.

You can’t even set up payments until the proper amount for 2018 has been established. You’ll have to have the cash on hand and if you overpay, good luck getting your overpayment back. Unfortunately, if you prepay now, you’ll also lose out on any interest that you may have earned on that money had you left it in an interest-bearing account while you waited for the property to be assessed. It’s like you just gave away the interest payment.

It may be far more beneficial to have this set aside in your emergency fund and earning interest than to spend it outright and not have it when you need it. Ensure that you’re leaving room for deductions and don’t jump the gun.

Remember too, you can deduct up to $10,000 in property taxes for 2018. Just make sure that you leave something for the next year. Don’t lose out and hope to get it back next year, it doesn’t work that way.

Always go over the idea with your Columbus Ohio tax attorney first. See what their take is on the option of prepaying vs waiting. Often, they can save you a ton of money if you just follow their instructions and wait for the right deductions. Also remember, prepaying the taxes won’t give you a leg up if you’re not saving money. Find out which route works the best for you and your household.

Take Proper Steps To Find The Best Will Writing Service Berkshire

Law

It is important to make the right research so that you can find the perfect and reliable will writing service, Berkshire. You should know how to find the ultimate and reputed one face.

Making the right choice to prepare your will is very important. You should be able to find out all good details on how it would be possible for you to get the right as well as reputed one that would help in getting your will prepared in the best way. If you take good and serious steps, it would definitely bring a big smile to your face. So, you should try to know as to how it would be possible for you to get the right source that would help in making your expectations get fulfilled without having to worry at all. Once you make your perfect research, it would surely be possible for you to find that it has helped in leading to bring a big smile to your face. So, you should be able to get hold of all the right details on how you can find the right source that would lead to your fulfillment.

It would be possible for you to find yourself glad if you manage to find the ultimate will writing service that would help in leading to bring a big smile to your face. So, you have to be quite serious to find out as to how you can get hold of the right source that would help in exceeding your expectation out of it. You would find that your right choice has really helped in leading to feeling quite satisfied out of it. By visiting http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Will_and_testament  it can help you to get the best idea about it.

You would be able to find that the perfect will writing service Berkshire has helped in letting you save quite a lot of time and money. So, it can be the right selection for you to find the best source that would never lead to feeling disappointed at all. This would also help in making your expectations get served where you never have to worry at all. So, by contacting the best and reliable one, it would surely be possible for you to get the maximum amount of fulfillment.

It can be possible for you to feel that your right choice has helped in proving to be much helpful to you where you never have to stay yourself on a tense situation at all. By checking their reviews, it would surely help you to feel that it has helped in getting your will prepared without any worry at all. Therefore with your own best choice, it would surely help in getting your level of expectations served.

Nursing Home Nightmares Are Real

Law

After years of taking care of you, the time has come to help your mother or father or perhaps your grandparents find an assisted living home perfect for them. You want to make sure that they receive the same careful attentive care that you were given as a child. However, the unfortunate truth is that you can’t always trust every nursing home that you see. According to a recent study, in 33 states, there was an estimated 25% of cases of sexual and physical abuse that went unreported in nursing homes. 

This article will discuss some of the signs of nursing home neglect or abuse. If you are suspicious of any of these signs, then you should take action. There are Omaha nursing home lawyers ready to defend your case and give you and your loved one justice. 

1. Poor Hygiene

Among the sign of neglect, this could be one of the initial signs. If your loved one looks as though they haven’t had a bath or shower in days, that’s neglect. It isn’t just the body either that the nursing home staff are responsible for helping their residents with either. Brushing their teeth can sometimes be difficult for a nursing home resident to perform, and so if they’re not receiving the aid they need, they might have poor oral health and hygiene. Be sure to check their mouths as well. 

2. Messy and Unsanitary Living Conditions

The initial tour may be nice, and the recreational room may be spotless, but you should definitely check your loved one’s bedroom to see if it’s tidy and sanitary. Or, if you can, perhaps check in on others’ rooms who aren’t receiving visitors that day to make sure that it isn’t all just a show. Kitchens should be clean, safe, and sanitary as well, so if you can, pop in and make sure that the staff is keeping everything up to date and clean. Otherwise, messy living conditions could lead to things like bed bugs, illness, and a large growth in bacteria and mold. 

3. Malnutrition

Sometimes, if the nursing home isn’t staffed enough, residents can be overlooked if they require help in feeding themselves. This includes dehydration as well. Residents can’t always receive the individualized help they require in nursing homes that are under-staffed, so if you notice signs of physical stress or weakness due to malnutrition, inquire about it. If your resident’s lips are chapped, and they’re unusually tired, be sure they’re getting enough water. 

Eyes Open

A lot of the signs are there in the open, you just need to be sure you are looking and can detect them. Your loved one may be under pressure not to say anything, so you have to rely on your own investigative skills. If your loved one has been neglected at their nursing home, there are lawyers ready to defend your case and seek justice. Giving them a call is your first step to liberation.

 

 

Defective Products and Helpful and Efficient Legal Assistance

Law

The Hazards of Defective Products

People rely on products of all types daily. Parents may use all sorts of products to take proper care of their babies. People in general may employ products that can assist them with personal hygiene, food preparation and beyond as well. The use of products that are in any way less than 100 percent reliable can make people feel vulnerable. It can put people at serious risk, too. When you’re in need of defective products law services Columbia SC residents can rely on, you can find in-depth assistance if you take the time. Capable lawyers can help individuals make their way through the tricky world of defective products. Defective items can be hazards to people in various big ways. Product liability is a massive concern all around the United States.

Defective Products Can Make People Sick

People depend on products for all kinds of things. If you purchase a food product that’s defective, that can be a serious hazard to you and to the rest of the individuals who make up your household. Consumption of seemingly fresh food that’s spoiled or bad in any way can potentially make you fall ill. It can potentially do the same for the other people in your life. Illness can be a costly thing, too. If you eat a problematic food item that makes you sick for any reason, that can lead to the need to visit the emergency room and beyond. The consequences of consuming questionable food items are abundant.

Defective Products Can Lead to Physical Trauma

Defective products pose risks that go beyond possible health conditions. That’s because they sometimes can make people susceptible to major physical injuries. If you’re a parent who unknowingly purchases and uses a defective car seat on your youngster, that can bring on awful and lasting results. Defective products can make serious injuries much bigger possibilities. They can even bring on deaths. It’s critical to acknowledge that defective products trigger staggering numbers of accidents every year. They bring on significant numbers of fatalities, too. It can be tough for consumers to steer clear of the perils of defective products. There are many defective products that at first look and function in totally normal and unassuming manners.

Legal Guidance Is a Must

Do you believe that you’ve been subjected to any kind of defective product? You don’t have to go it alone. You can recruit the knowledge and wisdom of a hard-working and effective lawyer who concentrates on defective product cases of all kinds. An attorney who understands the world of defective products and how it works can minimize energy wasting. This type of attorney can help you get better results, too. Thinking about all the fundamentals of defective product cases can be rather overwhelming. Thinking about all the little details that are part of these cases can be taxing as well. A strong lawyer can make the process a lot simpler.

 

How Can Domestic Violence Cause You to Lose Your Gun Rights in Minnesota?

Law

Second Amendment rights are a hot issue in a changing America. When a person thinks about what America was founded on they instantly think of freedom of religion, freedom of speech and the right to bear arms. As far as constitutional amendments goes; the second amendment is one of the big ones. Hence; the government must have a legitimate reason to take away a person’s gun rights.

Domestic Violence

Many states have laws that automatically suspend a person’s gun rights when there are even any pending domestic violence charges; let alone a conviction.  Of utmost importance is the fact that Minnesota State law does not explicitly dictate a requirement to remove firearms at the scene of a domestic violence incident. Unfortunately, in most instances, law enforcement will confiscate firearms at some point any way. How can they do this?

The fact is, that most domestic violence incidents result in Orders of protection; also known as “stay away” orders.

Minnesota passed a law in 2014 that incorporated federal laws on domestic violence. The newer laws delineate that a person may not possess a firearm during the duration of a domestic violence protective order or child protective order.

Other Types of Domestic Violence That Require Firearm Removal

If a person has been convicted of a stalking crime; they may be prohibited from possessing a firearm anywhere from three years to their entire lifetime.  A person who has been convicted in another state of violence against a family member while using a firearm then their gun rights may be taken away in the state of Minnesota for up to three years.

An assault charge against a family member (whether a gun was used or not) in the state of Minnesota may allow a judge to suspend gun rights under a discretionary period.

Violating an Order of Protection and using a firearm during that violation can cause gun rights to be suspended between three years and the person’s lifetime.

Often at issue, is the fact that Courts are not even required to inform all offenders of the gun prohibition. This can leave a person open to additional charges in the event that they are involved in another domestic violence incident within three years of the first.

Firearms Surrender/Removal

If a Court orders the removal of firearms in any of the above scenarios then the court will order the abusing party to transfer any firearms that the person possesses, within three business days, to a federally licensed firearms dealer, a law enforcement agency, or a third party who may lawfully receive them and who does not live with the abusing party. ((Minn. Stat. §§ 260C.201, subd. 3(d), 518B.01, subd. 6(g).))  At the end of the prohibitive period; the third party must give the firearms back to the person who surrendered them.

Problems with Domestic Violence and Removal of Firearms

One glaring issue with the above, is that domestic violence incidents (not to downplay the dangers of domestic violence) often result in the parties reuniting while an Order is still in effect. This effectively allows a disgruntled family member to be capable of suspending another family member’s gun rights for years.

Another issue is that the language orders the abusing party to surrender the guns. A person could quite easily drop off two of the ten guns they own and claim that’s all of them.

Either way, there clearly needs to be a more thorough and case specific way to address the firearms issue in domestic violence cases so as to ensure the safety and rights of all involved.

Reasons Why You Need A Personal Injury Attorney And How To Find A Good One

Law

Accidents can happen to anyone, no matter what the time or wherever you may be. Getting involved in one can be a nasty and traumatic experience, mainly if you or a loved one obtained injuries following the accident.

 

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What should you do if someone else’s carelessness caused the incident? Who will pay for the medical expenses and the lost days of work? How can you be compensated? In most cases, especially serious ones, you will need to hire a lawyer. But how will you know if you need an attorney? And how do I find a good one?

These are the reasons why you need to seek legal advice from an attorney

  • The accident resulted in severe injuries. The type of injury can depend on the following factors: the nature and severity of the injury, the length of recovery time and the cost of medical expenses like bills, medicines, and procedures. It can also involve medical fees you will have to pay for in the future.
  • You or your loved one received permanent or long-term disabilities or injuries.
  • The accident resulted in wrongful death of a loved one
  • There are chances that more than one is liable for your injury.
  • When you need to deal with your insurance adjuster
  • If the injury made you unable to return to work after a significant amount of time
  • When you receive a call from the person liable of his representative to agree on a settlement

How to find a good lawyer?

  1. Make sure the one you are hiring is a Personal Injury Attorney. They are experts when it comes to Personal Injury Law, and would help you win over your injury claim.
  2. Look for recommendations. Word of mouth is a powerful tool and is a much better source than by searching the internet. You can ask your family, friend or lawyer for recommendations when looking for a reliable personal injury attorney.
  3. Do your research on the lawyers you have shortlisted. It won’t hurt to know where they graduated, where they practiced law and if they already have lots of cases won that needed court settlements.
  4. Ask for names and details of your personal injury attorney’s past clients. The best way to check if he’s reliable, responsible and a great lawyer is by asking the people he or have worked for in the past.
  5. Ask your lawyer if he or she has handled cases similar to yours. It will help you decide if he or she is fit to represent you.
  6. Check how a lawyer communicates with you. Does he or she call you back the soonest time possible after missing your call? What mode of communications does your lawyer use? Is he or she easy to talk with and answers all your questions?
  7. Consider your gut feel. Do you feel comfortable with the lawyer after the first or second consultation? Do you have a good or bad feeling about hiring him or her?

In filing a personal injury claim, it is always best to consult with a Personal Injury Attorney. Doing so will give you the upper hand by making sure you are rightly guided and represented on your claim. It will also help you avoid any mishaps that can affect the result of your case.

How to Start a Legal Firm

Law

It’s a dream which every lawyer has, whether they have just passed the bar or they have been in the courtroom for what feels like their whole lives. And while many are able to make it on their own, the majority of lawyers who try to go it alone don’t work out. And it isn’t because they aren’t good lawyers, it’s simply that they focused entirely on the legal side of things and forgot to actually run a business.

To help you learn from past mistakes, below are some great tips to consider when thinking about starting your own legal practice.

Let Your Business Name Sell Your Services

If you were to read the name James & McKinnon Legal Services, would you have any idea what type of help they can provide?

However, what about if you were shown the name James & McKinnon Motor Vehicle Compensation Attorneys? Would you have a better understanding than?

When choosing a name for your legal practice, be sure to choose one which can help you to sell your services. While it is no doubt a lovely idea to have your name on your own legal firm, once you have established a quality firm then you can consider changing the name to something more personal.

Choose Your Location Wisely

Every lawyer dreams of working in a high rise building with high-profile clients. However, when you are just starting out this simply isn’t the case (pardon the pun).

For this reason, look for a modest location which is easy for your clients to get to and is also in a good position to be noticed by new clients. For example, if you will be providing 24-hour legal services then it could be a good idea to start a business close to a police station. Similarly, if you will be providing legal service to elderly people then look for areas with a large number of retirement homes where you can help.

Online Presence

There is a saying that if your business isn’t online then you aren’t in business. And in 2018 it is nothing short of true. Even if you just have a website with your contact information and a brief description of what type of services your fork provides, this is enough for search engines to index your business and make you are available on search results for potential new clients.

Don’t Overspend

The last time comes in the form of spending your money wisely. While it can seem like you are on the set of entourage each time that you go shopping for business items, remember that your startup capital is limited and should be spent prudently. For example, when publishing a website, utilize a ipage coupon from Groupon Coupons to keep your startup costs down.

Starting any business is no easy task, but it’s important, as a lawyer, to always remember that, at the core, that’s exactly what you are starting. A business. So be sure to treat it like one.

County Criminal Records. Physical Searches For Offender Histories.

Law

County Criminal Records

When it comes to searching for pertinent criminal records histories on potential offenders, it is absolutely crucial that many different jurisdictions be cross-referenced for these records. The way the U.S. justice system goes as regards crimes and their respective jurisdictions, is that certain classes of crimes are processed at different jurisdictional courts: misdemeanors and minor offenses are processed at the local courts, felonies and certain classes of misdemeanors at the county and state court levels, and federal crimes at the U.S. district courts. In this discussion, we will examine the county criminal records in regards to the types of county crimes, county criminals, and criminal records processed there; to best understand how a physical criminal records search requires records research done at the county level.

County courts relate to state courts in that they share many of the same types of county court cases and criminal records, which translates to a strong similarity between state and county criminal records. You might say that county and state jurisdictions share the load of felony criminal cases and records occurring in that particular state. While some misdemeanors are taken care of in county and state courts, the majority of these are usually handled at the local municipal level.

To further elucidate how county criminals and courts fit in with state criminal and civil justice as a whole and as regards county offender records, it is best to first get a working idea of how the county/state court system is broken down. There are four main branches of courts within each state: appellate courts, intermediate appellate courts, general jurisdiction trial courts, and limited jurisdiction trial courts. The appellate courts deal exclusively with appeals from other courts on sentences rendered that are now up for dispute. The general jurisdiction trial courts focus on the processing of felonies and significant sized civil cases. Lastly, the limited jurisdiction trial courts handle a specific type of court cases, which varies from state to state-and by right, county by county. A good example of a limited jurisdiction trial court may be a state or county court that processes only cases regarding divorce and separation. While some state and county legislation choose to house limited and general jurisdiction cases in one court, others divide them as noted above; however, no two states (or county jurisdictions) are alike in how they classify, process, and punish the varying offenses of criminal and civil law. Consequently, not all state and county courts will have the same records resources for state or county criminal records located in the same general criminal records location.

County criminal records offer a key piece to a person’s entire offender history that should not be overlooked. This said, neither should any of the other jurisdictions apart from county, and

here is why. First off, state and county courts share criminal record information on felonies and misdemeanor, so who’s to say that one isn’t filed at the state central information repository? Ideally, all offender information is supposed to be sent on to the state central repository, but due to mis-identification, mis-classification, clerical issues, and processing delays; many records may not make it there in a timely fashion or at all. Though it would be great to begin and finish a records search at the state level, more than likely, the state in which the history is being researched will not have the comprehensive and accurate collection of criminal records that you are seeking. Secondly, is the origination of classification. Not all criminal records will be charged as one class of crime and be rendered as the same in their respective records, i.e. a felony can-and is, quite commonly-plead down to a misdemeanor; so that the new location for the criminal records you want could quite possibly be in a municipal court, not a state or county court. Thirdly, every offender case is its own; meaning that no one can predict based upon classification and offender history, how a jurisdiction will approach a crime and the judge responsible, render his/her decision. While the law may seem as simple as black and white-what’s law is law-there are an almost infinite amount of variables that can coincide, conflict, and alter the processing and sentencing of a particular crime and court case to affect county classification. This irregularity, in turn, directly affects how criminal recordsfrom all jurisdictions-not just county criminal recordsaffect an offender history search.