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Virginia companies have options to structure their businesses

When a person in Virginia is forming a business, they have a number of choices as to how to structure their company. Of course, they could simply head out on their own as a sole proprietorship, but other options include a limited liability company or a corporation.

Some small business owners feel that an LLC is a good fit for them. It offers flexibility and simplicity when compared to a corporation. An LLC also shields the company from the issue of double taxation, which could crop up if a company is a corporation that owns assets that appreciate in value. If that is the case, then the corporation is taxed on the basis of its increased value if the corporation liquidates, but so too are the shareholders of the corporation. When a person owns an LLC, the LLC's taxes "pass through" to those who own the LLC, so the LLC itself is not taxed on its appreciation in value.

Don't fool yourself -- marijuana is illegal in Virginia

Some states in the nation are decriminalizing the use of marijuana or even making it entirely legal to sell, possess and use the drug. However, marijuana possession remains illegal in most states in the U.S., including Virginia.

Virginia does not even carve out an exception for medical marijuana - even the mere possession of under two ounces of marijuana could mean a fine of $500, a 30-day jail sentence, or both. And, should a person in Virginia try to sell five pounds of marijuana or more, he or she could face imprisonment from anywhere from five to 30 years.

Virginia man found not guilty in caterer's death

Arguments between people in Virginia can become heated, sometimes escalating into violence. Sometimes a person has no choice but to harm a person who is actively trying to kill them. Things become complicated, however, when a person who believes they acted in self-defense is accused of a crime.

A young man from Virginia who was accused of fatally stabbing a wedding caterer will not be convicted of the crime. He argued at his retrial that he acted in self-defense and after the jury could not reach a verdict a mistrial was declared and the young man was found not guilty.

Are sobriety checkpoints in Virginia legal?

Every so often, especially around holidays such as the Fourth of July, Halloween and New Year's Eve, police in Virginia will set up sobriety checkpoints as a means of identifying and apprehending drunk drivers. Sometimes a police department will publicize when and where these checkpoints will take place, but sometimes they do not make this information known to the public. This may lead Virginia residents to wonder if such checkpoints are even legal in the first place.

First of all, checkpoints cannot be set up in areas where other drivers, pedestrians or police could be put in danger, due to high speed limits. Also, a sobriety checkpoint can only minimally interfere with the flow of traffic. As far as timing goes, a sobriety checkpoint can be in place for two to six hours. Also, every sobriety checkpoint must be under the supervision and management of a site supervisor and police officers working at them must be in uniform.

What types of child custody are there in Virginia?

When parents in Virginia decide to divorce, they may have many questions about what access they will have to their child post-divorce. In fact, child custody decisions deserve careful thought, as they will affect the relationship each parent is able to have with their child for years to come. Therefore, it is important to have a basic understanding of child custody and visitation in Virginia.

In Virginia there are three types of custody. One is joint legal custody. If awarded joint legal custody, each parent will have the right to make decisions regarding the care of the child. This is true even if the child primarily resides with only one parent.

You never want to make these estate planning mistakes

There is never a good time to make an estate planning mistake. It only takes one of these to cost you serious time and money, and that's not a situation you want to find yourself in.

Fortunately, once you are familiar with the most common estate planning mistakes, you can formulate a plan for avoiding these at all times.

Representing your interests in the property division process

When a couple in Virginia divorces, does their property simply get split 50/50? Not necessarily. In Virginia, property division will be done through equitable distribution. A judge will determine what is fair in each couple's situation, and this may not always mean each party walks away from the marriage with exactly half of the marital assets.

Of course, before turning to the court for a property division decision, spouses might want to try negotiating a resolution out-of-court. After all, they understand each other and their needs, so if they're willing to work together toward the common goal of agreeing on their divorce legal issues, they may be able to reach a result that works out for both of them.

Blow the dust off that estate plan and give it a second look

Some people in Richmond may have taken the wise step of creating a comprehensive estate plan. While estate planning is a good thing to do, it is important not to let your estate plan languish and collect dust as the years go by. Instead, from time to time it should be reviewed, to ensure it still meets your needs. The following are some life events that may warrant a review of one's estate plan.

First, keep an eye out for changes in the law. For example, exemption amounts for the estate tax have changed over the years. It is important to review your estate plan when tax laws change, to ensure it still meets your needs. Marital laws have also changed over the years. For example, same-sex marriage was made legal in 2015. For couples affected by that law, it may be worthwhile to review their estate plan to take advantage of any opportunities they did not have in the past.

Estate planning involves more than just a simple will

Some people in Richmond may have taken the wise step of creating a will, but then stopped there thinking their estate plan is complete. However, a well-rounded estate plan encompasses more than just a simple will. Let's go over some other documents that a person may want to include in their estate plan.

For example, a person might want to include a health care power of attorney and financial power of attorney in their estate plan. Sometimes these two appointments are included in a single document. However, they each accomplish a different thing.

High-asset divorce requires fair asset valuation

No matter how amicably a divorcing couple in Richmond wishes to split, heightened emotions can cloud one's judgment, and lead a person to make less-than-rational decisions. This may be especially true in a high-asset divorce, since the stakes are so high. Therefore, it can help to seek the assistance of neutral financial experts when it comes to negotiating a settlement in a high-asset divorce, so that a fair result can be reached.

Part of keeping a high-asset divorce realistic is to seek the help of a valuation expert. This person can objectively determine how much the couple's assets are worth. However, keep in mind that sometimes, such as in the case of those who own a business, valuing an asset can be very complex.

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