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Marinara Money

 

The legal experts of Twitter and Facebook are discussing Donald Trump Jr.’s* recent request for financial disclosures from his soon to be ex-wife, Vanessa. People are confused and asking many questions, including:

 

  • Don’t they have a Prenuptial Agreement** ? The answer to this is probably yes; and
  • Why would he care what his wife has when he’s the one with the deep pockets? Insert boring legal procedure here.

Massachusetts requires that parties make financial disclosures during the divorce process.*** This is true whether the parties have a Prenuptial Agreement** or the divorce is contested. Parties must fill out and exchange Financial Statements, listing all of their income, expenses, assets, and liabilities. Parties must also exchange three (3) years of individual and joint taxes, bank statements, investment statements, and inheritances**** (such as Vanessa Trump’s alleged inheritance from her father, who was an investor in a marinara sauce company).

As always, please let us know if we can provide any additional information for you regarding this or any other legal matter.

Warmest Regards,
John and Faye

* This is not intended to be a commentary on any member of the Trump family or their politics. It is merely intended to provide information about divorce procedure.

** For more information regarding what makes a Prenuptial Agreement valid, please see: https://wjslegal.com/category/divorce/page/2/

*** We can’t confirm that this is true in every state in the country, but New York seems to have similar requirements to Massachusetts.

**** For more information on whether inheritances are considered individual or marital assets, please see: https://wjslegal.com/category/divorce/page/3/

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Mmmmm….Donuts….

Do you know what goes really well with chocolate chip waffles and Fruit Loops? Donuts!

Not really, but there are many grandparents who believe “what happens at Nana’s, stays at Nana’s.”  We  know one set of grandparents who have something called “BG Day,” where breakfast with grandparents consists of desserts first, followed by an actual breakfast if the kids have room in their bellies.

Grandparents have certain rights. They get to load them them up on empty calories and sugar then send them home to crash. They get to buy them gifts for the rarely recognized holiday of “Saturday.”  Most importantly, they get to visit with their grandchildren.

It’s not uncommon that grandparents get caught in the cross hairs of divorce. In the most extreme circumstances, grandparents are denied visitation by their “outlaw;” however, unless there is a justifiable reason to deny a grandparent visitation, it is usually presumed that it is in the best interest of the child(ren) to foster that relationship.

As always, please let us know if you have any questions about this or any other matter.

Warm regards,
John and Faye

For more information, please see:
https://www.mass.gov/guides/massachusetts-law-about-grandparents-visitation-rights

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Said Nobody Ever.

“Title insurance is the most exciting topic EVER!”

– Said nobody in the history of the world

It IS really important though. If you’re thinking of buying (or if you have clients who are), check out this information from Old Republic Title:

 

 

http://www.oldrepublictitle.com/blog/what-every-realtor-should-know-about-owners-title-insurance.asp

 

As always, please let us know if you have any questions about this or any other matter.

Regards,

John & Faye

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Will You Accept This Deposit?

 

What is Earnest Money? Buyers typically give a deposit when they make an offer on a house. The money is provided to demonstrate that you are “earnest” or serious about buying their home. The amount of earnest money given usually depends on local custom, but a serious buyer might opt to give more to show commitment.

In most cases, the earnest money goes towards the eventual purchase of the house; however, there are two primary scenarios where you Buyers might have earnest money returned:
1. Rejected offer. If you make an offer to buy a house and the seller turns it down, they are required to give you the earnest money back; OR
2.  Contingencies. When you make an offer to buy a house, the offer is usually contingent upon certain things, like a home inspection. If the inspection uncovers a serious flaw which is unacceptable, can’t be fixed, or the seller is unwilling to fix, you will also get your money returned.

To the contrary, if you back out of the Offer or Purchase and Sales for no good reason (ex. you decide you just don’t like the house or location), you might forfeit your earnest money. Like so many things in the law, we look at the return of earnest money on a case by case basis to determine what is right or just.

As always, please feel free to contact us with questions that you may have about this or any other legal issues.

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Resolutions

What is your New Year’s resolution? Are you going to commit to working out more often? Spend more quality time with your family? Start saving money for retirement? Read one book per week?

If your 2018 goals include buying your first home, re-sizing, or refinancing, these should be your resolutions:

1. Find out your credit score and history;
2. Establish and maintain good credit practices (ie. pay your bills on time, monitor your credit report for fraud, close unused lines of credit);
3. Save a reasonable down payment for the house that you want to buy;
4. Find the right home buying team for you. Identify a realtor, lender, and attorney that work together often.* If the team know one another and work well together, the process will be so much easier and less stressful for you;
5. Get organized: gather pay stubs, federal and state tax documents, current photo identification, bank statements, as well as any divorce, bankruptcy, and investment property documents, if applicable;
6. Obtain a mortgage pre-approval; and
7. Be smart: do not make any large purchases or big changes to your finances.

Wishing you a happy and healthy 2018!