Law Office Of Sam Jubran - March 2018

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JONATHAN’S 15TH BIRTHDAY Our Trip to Carolina ATV World

Jonathan enjoys a variety of gadgets, toys, sports, and hobbies. But this year, he asked for something different for his birthday. It wasn’t a material object he wanted this time; instead, he asked me to take him on a riding and camping trip to Carolina Adventure World (CAW). Jonathan really enjoys camping and riding ATVs, and Alison thought it was a fantastic idea. So, we planned it. Chuck and Jared Jubran, my cousin and his son who also live in Jacksonville, followed us to South Carolina for our three-day adventure that we started on Saturday at 4 a.m. We were off to one of our favorite riding spots in the country, and we looked forward to kicking off Jonathan’s 15th birthday celebration with travel, adventure, fun, and excitement. Jonathan has been riding his own ATV since age 6; and before that, he rode as a passenger in front of me on my ATV. What keeps us riding is the freedom and adventure an ATV delivers. We enjoy the forests, the weather, and the seasonal shifts in the terrain we see from trip to trip. Each ride is truly a unique adventure! Riding brings entertainment and fun for all ages. It’s always been a thing for our family, and that’s why we were excited Chuck and Jared could make the trip. We always enjoy the opportunity to take a break in the great outdoors with friends and family. The whole family rides! Jonathan and I try to ride and camp in South Carolina annually, and we ride locally with Alison and Addison in the Ocala National Forest — but only in the cooler months. The whole family has made the trip to CAW at least twice.

Jonathan and I enjoy Carolina Adventure World. They boast one-way riding trails with all levels of difficulty clearly marked. Amenities include furnished cabins for lodging and also tent or RV- style camping. They have an enduro track, a mud bogging pit, a drag racing strip, and a rock crawling area. They have a disc golf course and used to be one of the best zip line venues in the country. They have since closed the zip lines, but you can still find some of the lines and support structures on the property. We usually stick to riding the trails, but we also enjoy watching others play in the mud or on the drag strip. On the morning of Jonathan’s birthday, we rode away from our cabin for the last ride of the trip at 5 a.m. We rode our favorite trails before dawn. As we rode, the sun’s rays began to shimmer from the dew in the trees and the valley, and by that time, we had ridden 82 miles of hilly, freshly groomed, damp clay trails. We had an amazing time celebrating Jonathan’s 15th birthday in South Carolina with Chuck and Jared. When we returned home Monday afternoon, Alison and Addison went all-out with decorations, balloons, and some of Jonathan’s favs: oysters, chicken wings, and birthday cake! We returned home Monday, and by Tuesday afternoon, Jonathan had obtained his restricted driver’s permit!

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LOVE THEM Just because your child isn’t under your roof anymore doesn’t mean they don’t need love. Love from a spouse or a child of their own will never fully replace a parent’s love. Let your child know you always have their back. Be proud of them and their accomplishments as an adult. Your love and support means just as much now as it did when you were raising them. Parenting an adult is an exciting adventure. Remember, while your relationship will change throughout the years, your child will never stop needing your love and support.

Tax Cuts and JOBS ACT Hearing about the new Tax Cuts and Jobs Act (TCJA) that passed at the end of last year might have you on the edge of your seat. If you’re going through a family law case, it can potentially affect your bottom line. After Jan. 1, 2019, alimony will no longer be taxable as income to its recipient or tax-deductible to its payer. This means, if you are anticipating divorce and alimony, time may be of the essence! Under the current laws in the state of Florida, a spouse who is paying alimony is able to claim the payments as a tax deduction, and the spouse who receives the alimony reports them as taxable income. WHAT YOU MIGHT EXPECT When your child packs their bags and strikes out on their own, your parenting journey isn’t over. It’s just different. Regardless of their age, distance from home, or stage of life, your child still needs a parent. You may not be changing diapers or teaching them to drive, but your child still needs your support. Here are three guidelines that will help you make the transition from parenting a child to parenting an adult. TREAT YOUR ADULT LIKE AN ADULT No adult wants to feel treated like a child. They need a support system, but they don’t need help with their homework anymore. Give them space

and let them feel free to explore adult life. Don’t tell them what to do. Offer guidance only when it’s wanted. Be open with them about your mistakes so they can learn from your experiences as well as their own. LISTEN, LISTEN, LISTEN You can’t correct every parenting mistake you’ll ever make. If you find yourself trying to correct mistakes you made years ago, stop. You can accomplish much more by listening to your adult child now than you can by trying to right your past wrongs. Parenting young children involves a lot of talking. Now that they are older, take time to listen.

work. The husband pays $50,000 in taxes. Going through a divorce in 2016, the husband is ordered to pay $80,000 a year in alimony to his wife, which is tax-deductible. This means that his tax liability was reduced to $120,000 per year, so he only had to pay $24,000 in taxes. His wife, on the other hand, has to pay $16,000 in taxes on the $80,000 she received in alimony. With the new law in place, a spouse paying for alimony will not be able to claim it as a tax deduction, and the receiving spouse won’t report it as taxable income. If this couple were to divorce in the year 2019, the husband wouldn’t receive a reduction on his taxes, and the wife wouldn’t be forced to pay the $16,000 in taxes. The husband would continue to pay the $50,000 on top of

the $80,000 he was ordered to give his wife. The wife would be able to pocket the full $80,000 in alimony without paying taxes. If you’re already paying or receiving alimony, the act won’t affect you. It’s only applicable to those who will be divorcing after Dec. 31, 2018. Procrastinators beware, time is of the essence for those alimony payments to be tax-deductible! Knowing what’s coming your way can help you better prepare for the future. Feel free to call us for more information on the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act.

Consider this example of a fictional husband and wife. The husband makes $200,000 per year, and the wife doesn’t

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MODIFICATION OF ALIMONY DUE TO A SUPPORTIVE RELATIONSHIP

F lorida law provides a means by which an alimony obligor could modify or terminate their alimony payments if the recipient of those payments is involved in a “supportive relationship.”What is a supportive relationship? A typical relationship with a member of the opposite sex will not be enough to terminate or modify alimony, even if the person receiving alimony and her paramour live together. Cohabitation in Florida is an extremely fact-oriented, detailed analysis. Modification of alimony due to a supportive relationship is usually complicated. The key element is how the relationship affects the financial rights and obligations of the parties involved. How that relationship impacts alimony is usually complex and volatile. A supportive relationship may exist in cases where an alimony recipient is residing with another person, existing and conducting themselves in the same manner as would a husband and wife. However, a supportive relationship does not exist if they each keep their finances completely separate and the paramour is not funding or otherwise providing benefits for the alimony recipient in a way that reduces the alimony recipient’s monthly living expenses. The

key here is does the supportive relationship ultimately reduce the alimony recipient’s need for support? If so, then modification may be appropriate. Before the court can modify alimony, the petitioner must prove by a preponderance of the evidence that a supportive relationship exists. Judges will look at a variety of circumstances and evidence to determine whether the relationship meets the criteria. These include but are not limited to the following: • The extent to which the recipient and the other person have presented themselves as a married couple • The period of time that the recipient has resided with the other person in a permanent residence • Pooling of assets • Receiving mail in a common location • Acquiring joint assets together • Increase in value of the other’s separate assets • Valuable services, like babysitting

For more information on supportive relationships in Florida, call us anytime.

SUDOKU

BRAISED CHICKEN AND SPRING VEGETABLES

Recipe inspired by Real Simple

This simple and delicious one-pot recipe is perfect for a weeknight. It only requires about 15 minutes of hands-on work, but will taste like you spent all day building flavors. It’s a hearty comfort food that’s sure to delight eaters of all ages.

Ingredients

• • • •

1 tablespoon olive oil

• • • •

4 large carrots, cut into sticks

8 small bone-in chicken thighs 1 cup low-sodium chicken broth

1 tablespoon sugar

2 tablespoons fresh chives, chopped

12 radishes, halved

Salt and pepper

Directions

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Heat olive oil in a large saucepan or Dutch oven over medium-high heat. Season the chicken with salt and pepper. Brown in pan for 6–7 minutes per side.

3.

Remove chicken from pan and scrape off excess fat. Add broth and stir in radishes, carrots, and sugar. Return chicken to pan, placing on top of vegetables. Gently simmer with lid on pan for 15–20 minutes. Finish with chives.

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4.

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CELEBRATING JONATHAN’S BIRTHDAY INSIDE THIS ISSUE 1. 2. ADULTS NEED PARENTS, TOO PREPARE YOURSELF FOR THE CHANGES COMING YOUR WAY

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THE FLORIDA COHABITATION LAW

BRAISED CHICKEN AND SPRING VEGETABLES

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DON’T FORGET TO CLEAN THE HEART OF YOUR HOME

The Importance of Spring Cleaning YOUR UTILITY ROOM

How Often Should You Replace Your Air Filter? • Homes with minimal foot traffic (single or double occupancy) and no pets or allergies: 6–12 months. Family homes (three or more occupants) with no pets or allergies: 3–6 months. Family homes with at least one pet or minor allergies: 2–3 months. Family homes with multiple pets or allergies: 1–2 months. In addition to changing the air filter, it’s important to schedule a routine inspection of your home’s HVAC system. This includes an inspection of the appliances themselves and any connecting ducts. Dust, dander, and mold can accumulate in the ducts and spread throughout the home, which can lead to health issues, including respiratory problems. • • •

The start of spring brings everyone’s favorite seasonal chore — spring cleaning! As you dust, vacuum, organize, and declutter, don’t forget about the one room that often gets neglected. This year, give special attention to the utility closet. The utility closet houses your furnace, boiler, water heater, A/C junction, and other similar large appliances. Homeowners often forget about these appliances because they are out of sight and out of mind, and this can cost a lot in the long run. Like all the other rooms in your home, this space needs to be kept clean. Dust, for instance, can be hard on HVAC systems. Over time, it accumulates in the HVAC intake and clogs the air filter, reducing its effectiveness and efficiency. This results in a short lifespan for your system, higher power bills, and a poorly heated or cooled home.

A routine inspection will identify potential problems in your HVAC system. On top of that, you can get these systems professionally cleaned and maintained. These are simple steps that will keep your home’s air systems running smoothly for years to come. Plus, you’ll be ready for the summer months ahead!

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