Wills, Trusts, Business, Real Estate, and Probate Blog

What's new in estate planning, business, and real estate law.

New Minimum Wage Law in Michigan

Posted By Andrew Balzer on January 31, 2019

The Michigan legislature has amended the Minimum Wage Law in Michigan. The Legislature adopted 2018 PA 368 on December 4, 2018, and Governor Snyder signed the legislation into law on December 13, 2018. The bill will take effect in March 2019. Under the new law, the minimum wage employers will be required to pay their employees will increase each year until 2030, as long as the unemployment rate in Michigan does not rise above 8.5% during any preceding year. Assuming unemployment stays beneath the 8.5% mark, the minimum wage increases will be the following: End of March, 2019: $9.45/hour January 1, 2020: $9.65/hour January 1, 2021: $9.87/hour January 1, 2022: $10.10/hour January 1, 2023: $10.33/hour January 1,

How does the Department of Transportation Repair Claims Process Work?

Posted By Leslie Card on January 9, 2019

The Michigan Department of Transportation (MDOT) has jurisdiction over state trunkline (M, I, or US route), not local or county roads. Thus, if your car is damaged on a state truckline, due to the condition of the road condition you can submit a claim to MDOT. If you have a claim for repair on a county or local road you will have to contact your local officials. To file a claim for damages, an individual must fill out a form on MDOT’s website, have the form notarized, and attach any supporting documentation that you possess. The document must then be submitted to the individuals regional MDOT office. If the claim is under $1,000 it will be investigated (claims over $1,000 must be litigated). MDOT states that the investigation

Why it is important to find the time to plan your estate?

Posted By Leslie Card on December 20, 2018

Nobody wants to contemplate their death, but it is important to take control of your estate plan before it is too late. Estate plans help to maintain your wishes. If you want certain people to get certain assets you can designate them to individuals. Further, estate planning is not just about money. When you are planning your estate, you can list potential guardians for minor children, designate a patient advocate to make medical decision when you are unable too, and appoint a Power of Attorney to act as your agent. Creating a Trust or a Will can help to quell the internal fighting between children after the death of their parent, because without such documentation regarding the distribution children may succumb to anger over

Estate Planning When You Are Separated

Posted By Leslie Card on November 14, 2018

Today’s modern family can be complex. In fact, today, many spouses have decided to remain permanently separated from their spouses but not go through the process of divorce. We have seen this with the recent deaths of Kate Spade and Anthony Bourdain, both of whom have estranged spouses that are entitled spousal rights arising out of their deaths. This kind of long-term separation can raise complex estate planning issues, as spouses are given certain rights during the marriage that do not terminate until a final decree of divorce. When a married couple separates, their spouse is still considered their heir entitling them to a wide-range of benefits-from social security benefits to inheritance rights in probate court. As a

Perchville’s Namesake Saved by Trademark Law

Posted By Dylan Loga on October 26, 2018

Trademark Background Michigan trademark law is governed by the Trademarks and Service Marks Act, which is modeled after the federal law governing trademarks, The Lanham Act. A trademark is any word, symbol, phrase, or any combination thereof, adopted and used by a person to identify goods made or sold by someone and to distinguish the goods from similar goods made or sold by others. A trademark protects someone’s word, symbol, or phrase against any other individual from utilizing or marketing a similar mark. When a person files an application for a trademark, a specific class where the trademark will be utilized, must be selected, such as what kind of good or service. More than one class may be occupied by one