What To Know For Tax Season 2017

What should you know for this year’s upcoming tax season? 1. New Filing Date Generally, taxes are due on April 15, but this year the deadline has changed because April 15 falls on a Saturday. This was normally push the deadline to Monday, April 17, but that is Emancipation Day, a holiday in Washington, DC. […]

4 Tax Mistakes that Hurt Your Bottom Line

As tax season approaches, be sure not to fall victim to these common oversights: Charitable Deductions You can receive charitable deductions for your old clothing and furniture that you wish to dispose of. The important component is ascertaining the value of those items. If your deduction exceeds $500 for noncash donations, a Form 8283 will […]

New Bill To Limit Family Based Visa – Immigration Law

Bill Introduced in the Senate to Lower Family Based Immigration and Terminate the Diversity Visa Lottery On February 7, 2017, the Reforming American Immigration for Strong Employment (RAISE) Act was introduced in the Senate. If this Act passes into law, it would: • Cancel the visa category that allows United States citizens to file relative […]

Donald Trump’s Executive Order on Immigration

On Friday, January 27, 2017, shortly before close of business, an executive order was signed concerning the much discussed temporary ban of refugees and foreign nationals from certain countries. As of this time, the signed copy has NOT been released by the White House. Shapiro Law Group, PC has obtained access to a leaked, unsigned […]

Changes to Immigration Documentation Laws and Border Security

In the past week, several executive orders have been signed by the new administration with making major changes to Immigration. The first was focused on internal security in the United States. A new focus has been created on persons in the United States without documentation, whether they entered the country without inspection or overstayed their […]

The Privilege of Union: Examining the Long Arc of Privileges in Massachusetts

Massachusetts has long enshrined the sanctity of the attorney-client privilege. In civil cases, Massachusetts also recognizes the common interest or joint litigation doctrine, the work product doctrine, the marital disqualification doctrine, the priest-penitent privilege, the psychotherapist-patient privilege, the allied mental health professional-client privilege, the social worker-client privilege, the rape counselor-victim privilege, the domestic violence counselor-victim […]

Acknowledgement, Participation and Consent: SJC Examines The Hallmarks of Parentage

In 2014, Plaintiff Karen Partanen filed a complaint in the Probate and Family Court seeking to establish legal parentage of two young children.  The complaint alleged that she and the defendant, Julie Gallagher, had been in a committed, non-marital relationship between 2001 and 2013.  Using in vitro fertilization, and with Partanen’s “full acknowledgment, participation, and […]

Diversity Visa Lottery Program Dates Released!

The United States has long been known as a “melting pot” of nationalities, cultures, and ethnicities. In order to keep the United States diverse, Congress enacted a program called the “Diversity Immigrant Visa Program.” This program makes up to 50,000 immigrant visas (green cards) each year to random applicants from across the world. The eligible […]

Immigration Expands Eligibility Effective August 29, 2016!

Immigration Expands Eligibility for its Provisional Waiver Program, Effective August 29, 2016!  Expansion of the Waiver Program May Allow over 100,000 Eligible Applicants for Permanent Residence to Pursue Permanent Residence While Staying with their Families Longer Normally, if a U.S. citizen or Legal Permanent Resident (LPR, or “green card” holder) wants to sponsor their family […]

Syria Designated for TPS through March 31, 2018 – Renewals AND New Applications Accepted!

Immigration has announced that nationals of Syria will be eligible to renew their Temporary Protected Status starting immediately through September 30, 2016, or apply for the first time through January 30, 2017. Temporary Protected Status (also known as TPS) is a measure taken by the U.S. Department of Homeland Security (Immigration) there is a significant […]

Public Disclosure of Tax Returns: A Potential Political Nightmare for Donald Trump

As we all know, the prudent taxpayer is expected to openly report their tax liabilities and business ventures. Donald Trump, the outspoken GOP nominee, has denied rumors that he has any financial ties to Russian Oligarchs.Trump has been asked to release his tax returns. In response, his campaign manager has stated that Trump’s taxes are […]

Contract Signed Over E-Mail – Massachusetts Digital Exchange Laws

Massachusetts Court of Appeals provides guidance on the enforceability of digitally exchanged settlement agreements The digital age has ushered in novel methods of conducting business, exploring growth opportunities, and seeking restitution. All of these opportunities were exploited by Daniel and Lisa Duff, a pair of homeowners in Hingham, Massachusetts who sought enforcement of a putative […]

Electronic Communication Tips When Filing For Divorce – Massachusetts

4 Tips for Handling Electronic Communication During Divorce During a divorce, we must pay special attention to how we use various forms of technology and electronic communication. All too often, an unsuspecting spouse will find their emails and social media posts front and center in their divorce trial. Due to the pervasiveness of electronic media […]

I-9 Compliance – Immigration Fines & Laws For Employers

Employer I-9 Compliance More Necessary than Ever as Fines to be Increased to a Record Breaking High Effective August 1, 2016, civil fines for immigration-related violations are set to increase dramatically. These new fines will be applied to all penalties issued by the Department of Homeland Security after August 1, 2016 and any violations that […]

The Night Circus and the Division of Future Royalty Payments – Massachusetts

In her debut novel, artist and writer Erin Morgenstern constructed a fantastical tale set in Victorian London involving a magical circus and a pair of dueling lovers. Coming on the heels of the success of the Harry Potter series, The Night Circus received hype as the next literary phenomenon and was highly profitable for Ms. […]

The “Outside-In” Approach to Your Business – Business Law Massachusetts

 An “outside-in” perspective is premised on the idea that dependably successful companies begin with an external market orientation, whereby utilizing customer trends to design their business strategy. In more simple terms, this approach aims to deliver, above all else, something of value to customers, in lieu of simply developing a product. Times are difficult for […]

Custody Dispute Laws Massachusetts – Nicoletti v. Bolduc

Nicoletti v. Bolduc 14-P-1125 (November 6, 2015) The November 2015 appeals decision of Nicoletti v. Bolduc 14-P-1125 provides perspective to those whom feel aggrieved by the excessive delays often associated with judgments from the Probate and Family Court. Nicoletti was an appeal from a modification judgment of the Probate and Family Court (“the trial court”), […]

The Limits of Moral Condemnation – Jankovich v Jankovich – Family Law in MA

In Jankovich v Jankovich (14-P-1703), the Massachusetts Court of Appeals refused to morally condemn a father’s decision to have an extra-marital affair with the parties’ live-in au pair. Two years prior to their separation in 2012, the parties Jankovich hired a live in au pair, to assist with the needs their children. For the years […]

Medicare Enrollment Deadline For Dentists and Physicians in MA

Have you made a decision on Medicare enrollment? June 1, 2016 is the deadline for all the providers to either enroll or opt out of Medicare. Traditionally, most physicians, including dentists, have been enrolling in Medicare in order to provide covered services to Medicare eligible beneficiaries through the Medicare Part D plan or Medicare Advantage […]

An Adventure into the Pitfalls of Child Support Modification

Lupoli v. Zografos Authored by: Anthony J. Low, Esq. Nicholas Lupoli was so convinced that his change in income, new paternal duties, and financial submissions, that he vigorously argued to the Massachusetts Court of Appeals that he deserved of a reduction in his child support obligation. The Massachusetts Court of Appeals did not agree. Mr. […]

United States v. Texas: What Will the Supreme Court Decide?

In the aftermath of the Supreme Court hearing on April 18, 2016, concerning President Obama’s executive actions on immigration, the guessing game has begun. Many pundits predict that because we are in an election year and the High Court is equally divided 4-4 between conservatives and liberals (due to the recent death of Justice Antonin […]

Protecting the Online Reputation of Your Business is More Important than Ever

Anna Shapiro, Esq., CEO More and more, the online reputation of your business matters. According to BrightLocal’s 2014 Local Consumer Review Survey, “88% of consumers trust online reviews as much as personal recommendations.” Reviews have an increasingly big impact on customer decisions and your bottom line. A single bad review can do a lot of […]

Massachusetts Appeals Court Says Child Support Law Requires Inclusion of All Parents’ Income

Navigating the divorce process is often like wading through a minefield:  Even when you think you’re on sure footing, your next step may prove treacherous.  In the author’s experience, when parents divorce, resolving finances and determining child support dominate throughout the negotiations.  A ruling from the Massachusetts Appeals Court recently resolved and expanded the scope […]

U.S. Supreme Court to Decide Lawsuit Challenging DACA and DAPA Expansion-Immigration Law MA

      On January 19, 2016, the United States Supreme Court accepted the Obama administration’s request to review the question as to the validity of the Immigration expansion program. Throughout President Obama’s campaigns, he made numerous promises to try to “fix” the United States immigration system. In November 2014, President Obama announced that he […]

Massachusetts Property Division Laws – Alimony Attorney

  Property Acquired During Divorce Proceedings Remain Subject to Division When a couple is going through a divorce and figuring out alimony, the amount of alimony is calculated based upon the “length of the marriage.” While this term seems arbitrary, Massachusetts General Law c. 208, § 48, inserted by St. 2011, c. 124, § 3, […]

Massachusetts Employee & Independent Contractor Laws

Employee or Independent Contractor? Are Your Employees Classified Correctly? On July 15, 2015, the U.S. Department of Labor (USDOL) Wage and Hour Division (WHD) issued an Administrator’s Interpretation on the application of the Fair Labor Standards Act’s (FLSA) “suffer or permit to work” standard and the misclassification of employees as independent contractors. WHD Administrator, David […]

Changes the Way to File for Green Cards – Immigration Law Firm MA

  New Visa Bulletin for October Changes the Way to File for Green Cards! For years, the United States Department of State has controlled when people can file for permanent residence (green cards) based on family-based and employment-based petitions. For everyone other than a spouse, parent or minor child of a U.S. Citizen, they must […]

Green Card Lottery Begins Today 10-1-2015 – Massachusetts Immigration Law

Green Card Lottery Begins Today! The United States has long been known as a “melting pot” of nationalities, cultures, and ethnicities. In order to keep the United States diverse, Congress enacted a program called the “Diversity Immigrant Visa Program.” This program makes up to 50,000 immigrant visas (green cards) each year to random applicants from […]

Immigration Enforcement Policies in Massachusetts

  If you or your relatives hope to live and work in the United States, you should be aware of US immigration laws pertaining to acquiring legal immigration status and employment. Immigration policies at the state level vary considerably in terms of access to public benefits and verification of legal status of immigrants. Some states […]

The Republic of Yemen Now Eligable For TPS – Immigration Law MA

The Republic of Yemen Designated for TPS through July 22, 2017 Immigration has announced that nationals of the Republic of Yemen are now eligible for temporary protected status starting September 3, 2015 through March 3, 2017. Temporary Protected Status   Temporary Protected Status (also known as TPS) is a measure taken by the U.S. Department […]

Haiti Designated for TPS Extension through July 22, 2017 – MA Immigration Law

Haiti Designated for TPS Extension through July 22, 2017 Immigration has announced that current Haitian TPS beneficiaries may extend their TPS status through July 22, 2017. Applicants only have a 60-day period in which to file their extensions; from August 25, 2015 through October 26, 2015. If you feel you may be eligible for an […]

Eligibility for Provisional Unlawful Presence Waiver – Massachusetts Immigration

Immigration Documentary Requirements In the past year, living in the United States without immigration documentation has become increasingly more difficult. Immigration documents are required to get a driver’s license, enroll in some schools and colleges, work, sign some leases, and be approved for loans. More and more, people in the United States are trying to […]

Wealth Management for 2015 – Massachusetts Attorneys

Multi-Generational Planning The importance of legacy-driven infrastructure for families in the 21st century is of critical importance.  More than ever, families are experiencing rapid changes in structure, responsibility, and wealth. A carefully drafted estate plan will address the need to protect your family, provide for estate supervision, and ensure assets are safely protected and transferred […]

DACA Recipients Only Have 5 Days Left to Return 3-Year Work Permits!

Immigration has sent out final letters warning anyone who still has a employment authorization card (work permit) with a validity of three years that they must return it immediately. All 3-year work permits must be received by Immigration by July 17, 2015. In addition, any DACA approval notice with a period of longer than two […]

Have a Great Idea For a New Invention & Need Help Patenting Your Idea?

How to Patent Your Invention Creating a new invention can be an exciting and invigorating time. Once you have created an invention you believe the world needs to see and use, the legal process of patenting your invention should be the next step. Before you file for a regular or provisional patent application, your idea […]

What To Look For in a Family Law Attorney in Massachusetts

Facing Divorce in Massachusetts? Individuals who are considering divorce or may need the services of a family lawyer have many options. An experienced family law attorney will be experienced in child custody, divorce, and other areas. You can find a local attorney in many ways. However, what to look for in a family law attorney […]

Should I File a Restraining Order? How Do I File? – RO Laws in Massachusetts

Restraining orders, or 209A protection orders, are taken very seriously in Massachusetts. Filing a restraining order impacts the daily life of all involved, including any children the parties may share or live with. The decision to file for one is not to be taken lightly, however the decision to put off filing a restraining order […]

Is Divorce Mediation Right For Me?

The dissolution of a marriage can be a challenging time for any couple. There are a wide-range of decisions to be made by all parties involved. The process can be complicated, contentious, and emotionally charged. However, the divorce process doesn’t always have to be divisive if a skilled and experienced divorce mediator is involved. While […]

Massachusetts Child Support Laws Over Age 18

  When most people think about child support issues, they may naturally assume the issues relate only to minor children. Most child support judgments and obligations do revolve around the needs of minor children. However, Massachusetts is one of only two states where child support can be ordered after the age of 18.   Support […]

Challenging Already Issued Patents under the America Invents Act (AIA)

For a number of years, the patent system was composed of four main proceedings to challenge patent validity – reexamination, reissue, interference and litigation in federal court. Understanding how patent proceedings occur in the patent office will help you understand what you might be in for when patenting your invention. Current Proceedings – Reexamination and […]

Impact of the America Invents Act – Massachusetts

An overhaul of the US patent law began with the America Invents Act (“AIA”) back on September 16, 2011. Thanks to the changes in key provisions, the US is moving to a first-to-file system, significantly expanding upon the traditional definition of prior art and changing the process for contesting a patent.    Being the First-to-File […]

Massachusetts May Lead the Way to an Overhaul of New Child Custody Laws

President Obama recently noted, “No matter how advanced we get, there will never be a substitute for the love and support and, most importantly, the presence of a parent in a child’s life.” Massachusetts once again has the opportunity to lead the country with progressive social legislation that advances Mr. Obama’s vision. The stars have […]

Best Practices After the America Invents Act – Massachusetts Patent Law

Back in 2011, the America Invents act was brought into play. It was the most comprehensive and significant of all patent law reforms in decades. Some of those changes of the act went into effect right away, while others didn’t take place until September 2012. The most significant of all changes took place in March […]

When is St. Patrick’s Day? – St. Paddy’s Day Do’s and Don’ts 2014

Along with March comes the celebration of St. Patrick’s Day. This year it falls on a Monday, March 17th 2014. Every year on this day people gather together to hit the local pubs and drink up some of the delicious ale. They drink, eat, dance and have a great time. However, there are certain things […]

5 Tips That Give You an Edge In Your Worker’s Compensation Suit

According to the State law of Massachusetts, every employee should avail the insurance for worker’s compensation from their employers. This compensation is your right in Massachusetts in order to help you move forward if you are injured while moving forward in your duties. Massachusetts worker’s compensation law protects the rights of both the employer and […]

Who Gets the Dog? Property Division Laws MA

How Property is Divided in a Divorce Battle Each family and couple is unique, therefore when it comes to deciding who will get the dog, the juicer, or even the couch, there simply can’t be a set formula for a judge to follow. Judges in Massachusetts have a lot of discretion in the area of […]

Medical Malpractice Lawsuits in MA – Do I Have a Case?

In any area of medicine, from the most advanced and risky surgery to a prescription written for a headache, there is a reasonable expectation of safety and acceptable standard of care. However, there are certain aspects of the medical field that make it conducive to mistakes, such as: fast paced nature of emergency care, overworked […]

The Facebook Post That Got Me Divorced – Evidence Used in Social Media

You can build relationships on social media but you can also destroy them. The use of social media, Facebook in particular, has grown exponentially over the last few years. It has literally permeated every aspect of our lives. Posting feelings, pictures, celebrations, and even life changing events (both good and bad) has become like second […]

Personal Injury Laws in Massachusetts – What’s My Case Worth?

What’s My Injury Case Really Worth? Every lawyer who specializes in personal injury law hears the question “What’s my case worth?” While it is only natural to want to know the answer, it isn’t as simple as a standard formula or percentage like child support or alimony might be. Each case is different and each […]

Is Your Spouses New Year’s Resolution To File For Divorce?

Divorce on New Year’s The traditional New Year’s Auld Lang Syne song may just sum it up. “Should Old Acquaintance be forgot, and never thought upon; The flames of Love extinguished, and fully past and gone.” Are you ringing in the New Year’s without your spouse this year? Many people think of the New Year […]

Not Home for the Holidays? How Divorced Parents Plan For Holiday Visitation

Are You a Parent Out of State Trying to Plan for the Holidays? Living in another state without your child can make parenting more of a challenge, simply from a logistics point of view. Dealing with parenting plans during the holiday season can be particularly difficult when one parent lives out of state. The sooner […]

Child Custody and Visitation Rights During The Holiday Season

Who Gets Custody Around The Holidays? The holiday season can be stressful and hectic for anyone. Whenever co-parents need to deal with child visitation issues during the holidays, the stress can be heightened if they don’t prepare or agree ahead of time. Parenting plans generally outline how visits and holidays will be split between co-parents. […]

Divorce During The Holidays | Divorce Rate in Massachusetts

Surviving Divorce Through The Holidays Divorce can be a difficult time for anyone, regardless of the time of year or the circumstances. While the divorce rate has declined across the country in the last two years; it consistently remains higher for couples who are on their second or third marriages. For those on their second […]