How to Disinherit Someone — and Why You Shouldn't

How to Disinherit Someone — and Why You Shouldn't

People in Maryland can write practically whatever terms they want in their wills, but that does not mean the probate courts will honor those terms. Let's say that you want to leave nothing to the person who would ordinarily inherit a portion of your estate. You might be angry at the person, or you might have agreed, for example, with your spouse, that they will take nothing under your will. Take it from a Maryland estate-planning attorney—this may not be entirely legal.

Going Broke from Estimated Tax Penalties? Five Tips to Keep You Out of Hot Water with the IRS

Going Broke from Estimated Tax Penalties? Five Tips to Keep You Out of Hot Water with the IRS

For taxpayers who do not pay taxes throughout the year or underpay, they may face a large tax penalty when they file their tax returns. If you are going broke paying estimated tax penalties, working with a Maryland tax attorney to identify problems with your estimated tax payments could help eliminate those penalties.

Pro Tips for Reviewing Contracts

Pro Tips for Reviewing Contracts

At work, you may deal with leases, employment contracts, vendor agreements, non-disclosure agreements, and partnership agreements. If you need to review a contract, these seven pro tips from our experienced Maryland business attorney can help you cut through some of the legalese to identify the key terms contained in the contract.

[VIDEO] 5 Reasons Every Start-Up Should Use a Fractional General Counsel

[VIDEO] 5 Reasons Every Start-Up Should Use a Fractional General Counsel

The Fractional General Counsel Model utilizes an up-front fee structure customized to meet the needs of your particular business. This model is particularly beneficial for start-ups, who may not have the budget to hire a full-time counsel, but want to ensure their investment is protected. Check out our latest video on why more start-ups are using fractional general counsel.

[VIDEO] Top 5 Estate-Planning Questions Answered by Attorney Steve Thienel

[VIDEO] Top 5 Estate-Planning Questions Answered by Attorney Steve Thienel

Estate-planning can be an overwhelming process to consider. However, with a little knowledge, you can have your estate-plan prepared in no time, leaving you with one less thing hanging over your head. In this video, Steve Thienel answers the top 5 estate-planning questions people ask every day.

Did the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act Kill My Boat Deduction?

Did the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act Kill My Boat Deduction?

The deductions you may take for interest on your boat loan has changed somewhat since the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act (TCJA), but the deductions have not been eliminated. Below is a brief discussion from Maryland tax attorney, Steve Thienel, of some changes in the tax reform bill that impacts interest deductions for a boat. If you follow the current rules in the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act, you may still benefit from certain deductions.

Non-Solicitations vs. Non-Competes - Do you Know the Differences?

Non-Solicitations vs. Non-Competes - Do you Know the Differences?

Non-solicitation and non-compete agreements are used by many employers to protect an employer from an employee actively competing for business after the employee leaves the company. Even though the agreements may be similar, the agreements cover different aspects of an employee’s actions after terminating the employment relationship. Non-solicitation and non-compete agreements are typically included in an employment contract and remain in force after the employment relationship ends.

Income Tax Planning for Musicians

Income Tax Planning for Musicians

As a musician, you have expenses that are unique to your industry. Utilizing the tax deductions available for musicians is essential to reducing your tax liability. This is especially true since some of the deductions musicians may have used in past tax years were eliminated with the passage of the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act.

In this article, we discuss several of the unique income tax planning issues for musicians and how musicians can take advantage of tax laws to reduce income tax liability.

Two Ways to Save Thousands with the Home Office Deduction

Two Ways to Save Thousands with the Home Office Deduction

Business owners who use a portion of their home for business may benefit from using the home office deduction when preparing their income taxes. Claiming a deduction for a home office often reduces tax liability. However, the IRS has strict guidelines for claiming a home office deduction on your tax return. A Maryland tax attorney can help you determine if you can claim a home office deduction and the best way to maximize tax benefits for this deduction.

Can I Deduct my Business-Related Auto Expenses on my S-Corp Taxes?

Can I Deduct my Business-Related Auto Expenses on my S-Corp Taxes?

If you use your personal vehicle for business, you may be able to deduct the business-related auto expenses on the S-Corp tax return while obtaining reimbursement for these expenses from the corporation.

However, because unreimbursed employee expenses are no longer permitted under the new tax bill, a corporate accountable reimbursement plan is used to maximize the tax benefits of using a personal vehicle for business use. A Maryland tax attorney provides guidance on many S-Corp tax matters that impact the company and your personal tax liability, including deducting auto-related expenses.

How to Get a Tax Benefit from Business Losses

How to Get a Tax Benefit from Business Losses

If you are a new startup, you may realize a small profit at the end of the year, buton paperyou report a loss. Reporting a loss on paper is common for some new startups during the first two or three years. Thisis especially true when someone is turning a hobby into a profitable business venture. Depending on the type of business entity you choose after speaking with a Maryland business attorney, you could benefit from those losses while you are building and growing your business. 

Three Ways to Pull Money from Your IRA at Any Age - Without Getting Dinged

Three Ways to Pull Money from Your IRA at Any Age - Without Getting Dinged

Individual Retirement Accounts (IRAs) are used by many people to save for retirement because of the benefits of contributing to IRAs while you are working. However, if you want to access the money in your IRA before age 59 ½, you may owe taxes on the withdrawal, in addition to the hefty 10 percent penalty for early withdrawals.

Maryland and DC Reduce Estate Tax Exemptions

Maryland and DC Reduce Estate Tax Exemptions

In the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act of 2017, Congress greatly increased the federal estate tax exemption. The tax bill doubled the federal estate tax exemption to $11.18 million for 2018. At the time of passing the tax bill, Maryland and DC intended to match the federal estate tax exemption amount. DC was set to match the federal estate tax exemption in 2018 and Maryland would match the federal exemption amount in 2019. 

The Correct Way to Use SOWs and MSAs in Maryland

The Correct Way to Use SOWs and MSAs in Maryland

An MSA is a Master Service Agreement used by your business that creates a legal relationship between the parties by setting forth the legal terms agreed to by both parties. A SOW is a Statement of Work. SOWs are specific to a job or a client. The SOW establishes the payment terms and project-specific terms for that particular client. The SOW is attached to and governed by the terms of your standard MSA.

[UPDATED] 10 Benefits of a Fractional General Counsel and Why You Want One

[UPDATED] 10 Benefits of a Fractional General Counsel and Why You Want One

Sometimes, individuals confuse a fractional general counsel with in-house counsel because they receive many of the same services from a fractional general counsel as they do from in-house counsel, but the attorney is not an employee of the business nor does the attorney work full time for the company. A fractional general counsel is a part-time attorney who provides on-going legal services for your company at a flat-rate or fixed pricing structure.

Understanding Small Business Health Care Deductions

Understanding Small Business Health Care Deductions

Health insurance premiums can be very expensive for a small business. To offset some of that expense for small businesses, The Affordable Care Act provides a small business health care tax credit. The tax credit can reduce the cost of employee health coverage for a small business. If you need assistance with this small business tax deduction or other tax deductions to reduce your tax liability, you can get more information from a Maryland business attorney.

Do You Owe Back Taxes? Here's What You Can Do To Get The IRS to Go Easy on You.

Do You Owe Back Taxes? Here's What You Can Do To Get The IRS to Go Easy on You.

Garnishments, seizures, and federal tax liens are just a few of the aggressive collection efforts the IRS may take to collect back taxes. A Maryland tax attorney can help you avoid aggressive tax collection efforts. Handling issues related to back taxes without legal counsel could cause the IRS being tougher on you than is necessary.