Florida Women's Law Group - September 2018

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WOMEN’S

Advocate September 2018

HOPE FOR THE BEST, EXPECT THEWORST Advice for Hurricane Season

If you’re lucky enough to have friends and family in the region you can stay with, keep those avenues open. You should still look up a list of shelters in your area just in case. Thankfully, even the most powerful storms are slow-moving and relatively predictable. So as long as you keep an eye on the Weather Channel, you should have time to decide if and when you and your family are going to evacuate. I would advocate for earlier departures based on my experience with Irma last year. I thought I was leaving in time to beat the traffic, but I found myself in 11 hours of gridlock. Keep bottled water and snacks on hand this time of year; you’ll need them if you get stranded in a shelter or on the interstate. Evacuations do add an extra level of stress to anyone going through a separation or custody battle. Contacting your ex will always be hard, natural disaster or not. But you should find a way to inform them of where you’re evacuating your children. Chances are that they are worried about their kids’ safety, and taking the time and emotional energy to let them know they will be safe is a great gesture of good faith. If you absolutely do not want to have contact with your ex, consider having a mutual friend relay the message. This is just my advice as one Florida mother to another. There are a lot of great resources online that can help you develop a hurricane plan that fits your family’s needs. At ready.gov/hurricanes, you’ll find great hour-by-hour advice for preparing for and dealing with the aftermath of a severe storm. The City of Jacksonville also has an app called JaxReady, which will give you the most up-to-date information on evacuation zones and local shelters in the lead-up to a storm.

2018 Jacksonville Business Journal Fast 50 2018 Florida Super Lawyers list

At the time of writing, it’s still relatively early in hurricane season, and we’re keeping our fingers crossed that this year will prove quieter than the last. But as writer Angela Carter once said, “Hope for the best, expect the worst.” Keeping last September’s experience with Hurricane Irma in mind, it’s important to remember that storms can pose a threat to northeast Florida. Having been born and raised in this state, I tend to be more skeptical than alarmist when it comes to hurricanes. But since becoming a mother, I’ve realized it’s best to be safe and comfortable rather than miserable — or worse, in danger. So as we hit the high point of the season, I urge our readers, especially those new to the area, to have a plan in place. First and foremost, if you live in a mandatory evacuation zone, evacuate . The authorities are serious when they say that no rescue crews will venture into those areas in the immediate aftermath of a storm. No one is coming to help you in an emergency. I cannot stress enough that you should not take this risk. Evacuations have been put into effect in the past two years, so even if this year turns out to be quiet, it’s best to know your options ahead of time.

FloridaWomensLawGroup.com

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4312 Pablo Professional Ct. Jacksonville, FL 32224

Here’s hoping for a quiet season,

“EVACUATIONS DO ADD AN EXTRA LEVEL OF STRESS TO ANYONE GOING THROUGH A SEPARATION OR CUSTODY BATTLE. CONTACTING YOUR EXWILL ALWAYS BE HARD, NATURAL DISASTER OR NOT. ”

-Heather Qu ick

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of chemicals and unpleasant substances, such as arsenic, mercury, and even urine, that could seriously harm your health.” The LAPD reported similar findings.

Wait, What’s in My Concealer? The Risks of Counterfeit Cosmetics and How to Spot Them

We like to think we can trust online retailers, but unfortunately, it’s all too easy to sell counterfeit items on the internet. Counterfeit goods, as defined by the London Police, are “fake items deliberately made to look genuine.” They can be hard to spot, but there are a few key clues that can indicate whether you’re buying a real-deal product.

Significantly Lower Prices

If it’s too good to be true, it probably is. A significantly lowered price could signal a counterfeit item. Sellers often get counterfeit items in bulk from foreign factories, which allows them to sell at a vastly lowered price and yield a large profit.

No Return Policy

If there isn’t a return policy, that concealer might be a counterfeit. These sellers aren’t worried about customer satisfaction; they’re concerned with selling the fraudulent product as quickly as possible to make money.

This spring, the Los Angeles police department seized $700,000 worth of fake cosmetics during a raid in downtown LA. Last year, the London Police issued a warning to consumers: Avoid buying counterfeit beauty products at all costs. So why is law enforcement so worried about where you get your blush? Not only are retailers who engage in selling fake items breaking the law, but they’re also often using the proceeds to fund organized crime. The even scarier aspect is that these products put consumers’ health at risk. The London Police guidelines note, “Fake cosmetics and fragrances have been found to contain toxic levels

Check the Brand’s Authorized Retailer List

Take a couple minutes before you submit your order to check the official website of the product’s brand. Oh, and as you’re site-hopping, practice some basic web security to help avoid sites selling counterfeit products — look for the “https” at the beginning of a site address, and pay attention to spelling and grammar mistakes on the website and in the URL.

WILLS AND TRUSTS

They Aren’t the Same Having a plan to leave a legacy for your loved ones is an important step to take, whether you are young or just young at heart. The security in knowing your family will be taken care of after you pass can do wonders for your peace of mind. But when it comes to making a plan, some people are unsure of which documents are best for their goals. To make the right decision, it’s important to know the difference between a will and a trust. Wills: Instructions for After You’re Gone A will is a documented record of your last wishes, including how you would like your assets distributed. Wills are used as a framework for when your assets go through the probate process and should be as detailed as possible to avoid any confusion as to your last wishes. Wills are also public documents; anyone can request to see a copy during probate, making potential disputes more likely. Contrary to popular belief, wills are not set in stone after you pass.

Trusts: A Plan That Grows With You In estate planning, trusts are a great vehicle for individuals who want to maintain more control over the specifics of their assets. For example, if you wish to leave a large sum of money to a minor, you can work with the appointed manager of your trust to create a plan that details when and in how many increments this money will be distributed. Another advantage is that assets properly placed within a trust can avoid probate and the public scrutiny that comes with that process. Trusts do cost more to set up than wills and are a bit more labor-intensive to maintain. Ultimately, choosing the best option between these two estate planning vehicles comes down to the type of assets you are hoping to pass on. A trusted estate planning attorney, like the professionals at the Florida Women’s Law Group, will listen to your goals and help you find the right fit for your legacy.

The court-overseen probate process does give creditors, relatives, and others the opportunity to dispute or change aspects of your last wishes.

2 Florida Women’s Law Group | (904) 241-0012

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Women Speaking Wisely “Above all, be the heroine of your life, not the victim.”

Buy From Sites That Verify Their Retailers

Two of the biggest online retailers, Amazon and eBay, both allow unauthorized retailers to sell on their sites, though they do encourage consumers to do their own investigation and look at reviews and ratings before purchasing from a seller. Jet, a more recent addition to the online retail sites, operates in a closed marketplace where sellers must be verified.

Whichever sites you buy your products from, look out for red flags that may signal a counterfeit item. A good deal isn’t worth putting your money or health at risk.

–Nora Ephron

SEPTEMBER EVENTS!

Second Saturday What Everyone Needs to Know About Divorce UNF Herbert University Center (43) RSVP: chelle@4womenlaw.com Fee: $45 Sept. 8 from 9 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. Savvy Women Meet Up Widowed Too Soon Florida Women’s Law Group Office RSVP: chelle@4womenlaw.com Sept. 10 at 6 p.m. Anastasia Island Library The 5 Things All Women Need to Do to Protect Their Legacy & Financial Future Through Estate Planning RSVP: chelle@4womenlaw.com Sept. 15 at 1 p.m.

Women’s Empowerment Panel Stories of Success From Women From the Top BCBSFL Conference Center Register: jfoss@montoyaassociates.com Fee: $15 (Breakfast included) Sept. 21 from 8–9:30 a.m. Women Business Owners of Florida Deercreek Country Club Sept. 24 at 6 p.m. Women’s Council Lunch at GHoC Women and Money Gabriel House Sept. 25 at 12 p.m. Ponte Vedra Library The 5 Things All Women Need to Do to Protect Their Legacy & Financial Future Through Estate Planning RSVP: chelle@4womenlaw.com Sept. 26 at 6 p.m.

COMING UP:

DHG Women Forward Women & Wealth: Creating a Financial Strategy That Works for You Hyatt Regency Jacksonville Riverfront Register: teri.sowder@dhg.com Fee: $25 Oct. 4 7:30-9:30 a.m.

Savvy Women Meet Up Who Gets Grandma’s Yellow Pie Plate Florida Women’s Law Group Office 4312 Pablo Professional Court RSVP: chelle@4womenlaw.com Sept. 17 at 6 p.m.

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4312 Pablo Professional Ct. Jacksonville, FL 32224

Inside

What to Do When a Storm Is Coming

Look out for Fake Cosmetics

Knowing the Difference Between Wills and Trusts

Florida Women’s Law Group Events Calendar

Get a Head Start on Next Spring’s Garden

PREPARE YOUR GARDEN Autumn Steps for a Better Spring Garden With fall just ahead, it’s a good time to think about your spring garden. For a beautiful garden next year, begin preparing this fall. Here are a few ways to get a head start! Planting Bulbs If you want beautiful flowers in April, you should start planting bulbs now. Many flower bulbs need to be in the ground before winter settles in; this helps activate the bulbs’ biochemical process that allows them to bloom. Getting the bulbs into the ground before it freezes allows their roots to grow deep enough to protect them from the biting winter weather. Among the flower bulbs you should plant soon are tulips, daffodils, irises, and hyacinths. Chicken Wire After you’ve planted your bulbs, there’s a risk that uninvited guests will dig them up. There are a few ways you can ensure that your bulbs

diseases into the soil and attract unwanted pests to your garden.

remain undisturbed throughout the fall. One way is to place chicken wire over your bulbs after they’ve been planted. This keeps rodents from digging them up and allows the plants to grow through the gaps in the wire. Keep Your Garden Tidy Once you’ve harvested your best fruits and vegetables, go back through and harvest the rest, even if you don’t plan to eat them. Make sure your garden is clear of old vegetables, fallen leaves, and weeds. Leaving decaying plants in or on top of the ground can spread

Healthy Soil Pulling up weeds and all of your vegetables can help keep the earth free from rotting plants, but there are other steps you can take to ensure that your soil stays full of nutrients. Pick up a kit to test the pH levels of your soil. Most gardens thrive in soil with a pH of 6.5. Add compost to your soil supply now to give it time to break down during the winter months.

4 Florida Women’s Law Group | (904) 241-0012

Published by The Newsletter Pro | www.thenewsletterpro.com

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