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Louisville Legal Blog

What makes up an estate plan?

The term "estate planning" probably brings to mind writing your last will and testament. The will always seems to be the focus in movies, books and other forms of media. However, wills are only one part of estate plans and have limitations on what they can include.

if you leave this life with only a will in place, you leave your estate and family without full protection. Make sure you have other documents in place for a complete estate plan that offers the most security.

Why couples should be honest about their finances before marriage

Nearly 80 percent of divorcing couples say that financial problems played at least some role in their break-ups. That's according to a study by Experian from last year. However, another study found that only 2 percent of married couples have prenuptial agreements. One attorney notes that they're even less common among people getting remarried, even though they often have more to protect, such as children from their previous marriages.

Prenups provide an excellent opportunity for couples to lay their individual finances on the line. It also gives them a chance to discuss their financial goals. This can help them see whether they're on the same page before they make their relationship official and start combining their assets and debts.

Papa John's struggles to find a buyer amid controversy

When the person who's the name and face of a Louisville-based company speaks out in ways that many people find offensive, that company can suffer potentially irreversible damage. In recent years, Papa John's has become known more for the words and actions of its chief executive officer and founder John Schnatter than for its pizza.

Back in 2012, Schnatter said that would need to raise the price of pizza to cover what he said would be the added costs to the company of the Affordable Care Act. Things have only gotten worse for the company and its outspoken leader.

How to prepare your child for a move after divorce

Parental divorce requires a multitude of transitions for kids. They may have to move to a new home or even a new town and new school. They may see one of their parents very little or almost never. Depending on how their parents divide custody of the kids, they may even no longer be living with their siblings.

However, these transitions don't end when the parents separate or even when the divorce is final. For example, a parent may remain in the family home through the end of the school year or until they're able to sell the house.

'Opportunity zones' seek to bring new life to distressed areas

City and state officials are working to turn run-down, low-income sections of downtown Louisville into thriving business districts. They want to encourage long-term investment in these areas. This involves creating "opportunity zones." By designating areas as opportunity zones, those who invest in property there are eligible for significant tax breaks.

As one Louisville developer says, the tax breaks are designed to encourage investors to stay in these areas for a long time, and not to "flip and flee." The longer they remain invested in a property, the more tax benefits they'll see.

Be prepared: Divorce will cost more in 2019

Did you know that getting a divorce in 2019 could be incredibly expensive?

Divorce is already an expensive venture because of all the assets you have to share with your former spouse, alimony payments, child support and other fees, but now it could be even worse because of the changes in the tax law that were made in 2017.

How to avoid common mistakes when hiring new employees

Are you in need of additional workers, whether for the holidays or from turnover? No matter the reason, there are some things you need to know before you start posting jobs online.

Hiring the right person for the position can not only prove challenging, but also legally risky. Avoid making a costly mistake by following these tips.

Yes, modifying your custody or visitation order is possible

After a court hands down a custody order, one or both parents may find that the plan simply is not compatible with their lives or the needs of their child. In some cases, one parent may feel quite satisfied with the order, while the other parent feels that the terms of the order are grossly unfair or does not allow for the flexibility that they need to remain working and keep other affairs in order.

While the details of each parent's struggles vary from case to case, courts recognize that many custody orders are not a good fit for parents, often because one or both parents experience significant life changes. If you have a custody order that deprives you of your parental rights or simply does not account for your needs, it is wise to consider a modification.

Easements may complicate your real estate deal

Whenever you consider leasing or buying a property, it is always important to understand any easements that another party may hold. In simple terms, an affirmative easement is a right to use a piece of property in a certain way, and a negative easement is a restriction against using property in a certain way.

If you have plans to alter a piece of property to meet your needs, an easement may keep you from doing so, possibly undoing all the advantages of obtaining the property in the first place. If, for instance, some other party has an affirmative easement to retain access to a road on a parcel of land that you want to develop, it may mean that you cannot develop some or all of your vision, because to do so would violate the other party's right. Similarly, if you want to build a collection of multistory dwelling on a piece of property, a negative easement may restrict you from building any structure more than one story tall.

Understanding fixed visitation for parents

If you or anyone you know has gone through a child custody battle, you know just how difficult it can be for parents to remain objective and fair when it comes to retaining parental rights and custody of a child. In some cases, parents may find themselves so at odds during the divorce process that courts hand down a fixed visitation schedule to a parent. In almost all cases, this order applies to the parent who does not receive primary custody.

Fixed visitation is a custody order that outlines specific times and even places where a parent may spend time with their child. Sometimes this is put in place for the benefit of the non-custodial parent, so that they have guaranteed time with their child, even if other aspects of their life are turbulent or if the other parent is motivated to keep them away from the child.

Call 502-584-1000 to speak to a lawyer today.

  1. Charles W. Dobbins, Jr.

    Charles earned his J.D. degree from the University of Virginia in 1974

    He was graduated from Washington & Lee University in 1970 with a B.A. with Distinction

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    Mark W. Dobbins

    Mark earned his B.A. from Emory University.

    He earned his J.D. from the University of Louisville.

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    Patrick T. Schmidt

    Patrick earned his B.S. in Accounting from the University of Kentucky in 1989.

    He earned his J.D. from the University of Kentucky in 1992.

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    Terrence L. McCoy

    Terry earned a B.A. from Dartmouth College in 1964.

    He earned his J.D. from Duke University in 1967.

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    Lisa Koch Bryant

    Ms. Bryant has extensive commercial litigation and bankruptcy experience. Prior to entering private practice, Ms. Bryant served as head of litigation for the Federal Land Bank of Louisville.

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  2. Wm. Stephen Reisz

    Thomas graduated from the University of Louisville Business School with a B.A. in 1973

    Thomas earned his J.D. degree from the

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    Sandra F. Keene

    Sandra earned her Bachelor of Health Science degree, with Honors, from the University of Louisville in 1982.

    She earned her J.D. degree from the

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    Elizabeth M. Jenkins

    Colgate University, B.A., Political Science, magna cum laude, 1983

    University of Virginia, J.D., 1992

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    Edward L. Galloway

    Ed graduated from Indiana University in 1967 with a degree in history.

    After obtaining a master’s degree in political science from the University of

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    Thomas G. Karageorge

    Thomas graduated from the University of Louisville Business School with a B.A. in 1973

    Thomas earned his J.D. degree from the

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  3. Tacasha E. Thomas

    Tacasha attended Harvard University in Cambridge, Massachusetts during the summer of 2001, where she studied courses in law and psychology.

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    Ayala Golding

    Ayala received her J.D. in 1994 from the University of Louisville, Louis D. Brandeis School of Law, Louisville, Kentucky, where she was a member of the Brandeis Family Law Journal, and

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    Kacie A. Wilkinson

    Kacie A. Wilkinson recently joined Tilford, Dobbins & Schmidt, PLLC, where she practices in the areas of business law & transactions, real estate, estate planning and probate.

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    Gwendolyn Chidester

    Gwen recently joined the Firm after being employed by notable Louisville companies for over 15 years in a variety of capacities including Corporate Counsel, Director of Human Resources, and Risk Manager.

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    William A. Buckaway, Jr.

    Bill earned his B.A. from Centre College in Kentucky in 1956.

    He earned his J.D. from the University of Louisville in 1961 where he was a

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    Terrell L. Black

    Terry earned a B.S. in Social Science from Campbellsville College in 1966.

    In 1969, he attended graduate school at Eastern Kentucky University focusing on

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    John A. Wilmes

    John was admitted to the Kentucky bar in 1977 and admitted to practice before the U.S. District Court, Western District of Kentucky in 1979.

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