Recently in Forms Category

New Form 1040 for 2019 Tax Season

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The IRS today announced plans to streamline the Form 1040 into a shorter, simpler form for the 2019 tax season. The new Form 1040 consolidates the current 1040, the 1040A and the 1040EZ into one form. The IRS will work with the tax community to finalize the streamlined Form 1040 over the summer to ensure a smooth transition.

Tax professionals can review a draft copy of the new Form 1040 and submit comments regarding the draft to WI.1040.Comments@IRS.gov.



New Bankruptcy Form, Rules Take Effect | United States Courts

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Individuals filing for bankruptcy under Chapter 13 must use a new form that presents their payment plan in a more uniform and transparent manner, and creditors will have less time to submit a proof of claim, under new bankruptcy rules and form amendments that took effect Dec. 1.

Read more.




Each October 1 the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) adjusts the standards and deductions used to determine the amount of monthly benefits an eligible family will receive. This toolkit provides tools and resources to help community organizations when working with SNAP applicants.

Due to the decrease in the maximum SNAP benefit allotments and the minimum benefit amount, some families may see a small decrease in their SNAP benefit on October 1. This will be especially true for any family receiving the maximum benefit allotment for their household size and for elderly/disabled households who are currently receiving the minimum benefit. This change in benefits may be confusing to SNAP recipients because many will experience a small reduction in their monthly SNAP benefit even though they have not had any changes in their income or expenses. Our toolkit provides community organizations with updated tools and resources and information on how to help SNAP recipients maximize their SNAP benefits.


Access toolkit and forms...


What is the technology needed for access to justice?--ABA Journal

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By Mary E. Juetten, CA, CPA, JD, founder and CEO of Traklight. In 2015, Mary co-founded Evolve Law, an organization for change and technology adoption in the law. She was named to the ABA's Legal Technology Resource Center 2016 Women in Legal Tech list and the Fastcase 50 Class of 2016. She is the author of Small Law Firm KPIs: How to Measure Your Way to Greater Profits. She is always looking or success stories where technology has been used to bridge the justice gap, from pro-bono through low-bono to non-traditional legal services delivery. Reach out to her on Twitter @maryjuetten.

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Therefore, clients are demanding mobile applications that provide direct access to a firm. In addition, consumers want education; online questionnaires to gather information rather than in-person consultations; and free legal forms for specific practice areas. Rather than fighting this trend toward creating mobile legal products and services, attorneys can use online information-gathering tools to triage and educate clients and focus on professional judgment for problem-solving.

Firms have made standard forms free, for example Orrick's Start Forms Library. Also, legal plans have free forms on mobile applications, like LegalShield's Forms app, which includes more than 15 free forms for common consumer transactions like renting, buying and selling--plus freelance agreements. Taking it a step further, we need to use mainstream technology to create solutions for specific applications within the law. For example, we can utilize chabots to answer frequently asked questions or customizable expert systems for immigration or incorporation questionnaires.

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Read more...


Check out Orrick's Start Forms Library



Joshua Stein PLLC---Model Opinion of Counsel

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Joshua Stein

Joshua Stein

In "Model Opinion of Counsel," published in the N.Y. Real Property Law Journal, Joshua Stein offers a template for a variety of common opinions of counsel for commercial loan closings. Click here: 

www.pdf2go.org/100090.html




 How to Report a W-2 Data Theft

Businesses and payroll service providers can now quickly report data losses resulting from a scam fraudsters are using to trick employees into revealing W-2 information. Find out how at Form W2/SSN Data Theft: Information for Businesses and Payroll Service Providers. If notified in time, the IRS can prevent employees from being victimized by identity thieves filing fraudulent returns in their names. 

Separately, the Internal Revenue Service, state tax agencies and the tax industry warned tax professionals to beware of a phishing email scaminvolving IRS e-Services.

A tax professional who experiences any type of data breach should quickly report the incident to the IRS. Tax professionals may contact their local stakeholder liaison. See details at Data Theft Information for Tax Professionals.

Client Site Visits: Checklist for Success | The National Law Review

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Studies reveal that clients, more than ever, want and expect great service from their outside counsel. On top of that, clients value lawyers who know and understand their business, as well their people and their policies. Clients also want lawyers who are trusted advisors and counselors.

Lawyers and law firms that take the time ask "How are we doing?" and take a proactive interest in helping clients achieve their goals and objectives add tremendous value to the relationship and build trust and loyalty with the client. Being a competent legal technician is simply not enough anymore in today's competitive market place for legal services.

And what is the best way to achieve this type of relationship with clients? Go visit them. In fact, I recommend that partners visit their top four clients each year. Show you care. Ask smart questions. Listen, learn and respond appropriately.

(Click here for) our Client Site Visit checklist, which offers practical guidance to lawyers who are interested in enhancing their relationships with top clients.

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Like the previous editions, this third edition seeks to help tenants' attorneys identify and, if they choose to, raise "silent lease issues" when they review a typical landlord's standard commercial lease.


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---------- Forwarded message ----------
From: Leahy, Bill (ILS) <Bill.Leahy@ils.ny.gov>
Date: Mon, Apr 4, 2016 at 4:26 PM
Subject: Criteria and Procedures for Determining Assigned Counsel Eligibility

Dear Board Members, Chief Defenders, Parental Representation Providers, County and City Officials:

 I am pleased to share with you the Criteria and Procedures for Determining Assigned Counsel Eligibility. They are the product of public hearings and surveys we conducted, in which many of you participated. These Criteria and Procedures are an important step toward the goal of having a uniform and legally acceptable eligibility standard in New York for people who are entitled by law to the assistance of counsel but "who are financially unable to obtain counsel." County Law § 722. They are issued in accordance with Section VI of the Stipulation and Order of Settlement in Hurrell-Harring v. The State of New York and the authority granted to ILS under Executive Law § 832(3)(c). Their effective date is October 3, 2016. During this six-month period, judges and eligibility screeners will receive training in their implementation.

 I would like to emphasize a few points about these Criteria and Procedures:

 ·         Both the statute and the settlement order state that the Criteria and Procedures are intended "to guide courts...in determining whether a person is eligible for" publicly funded representation.

 ·         The Criteria and Procedures do not require any change in current practice whereby some judges determine eligibility directly, while others delegate eligibility recommendation responsibility to a screening entity.

 ·         The Criteria and Procedures respond to decades of criticism of New York's failure to have a consistent set of criteria and procedures for determining eligibility for assigned counsel.  In particular, they address the 2006 Kaye Commission critique that "guidelines for the appointment of counsel exist only in a few counties and that even in those counties, the guidelines were not uniformly applied."  Therefore, "a defendant may be deemed eligible for the appointment of counsel in one county and ineligible in a neighboring county or even in a different court within the same county."

 ·         The process that we used to develop these Criteria and Procedures is explained at pp. 6-10.  I emphasize here that an important resource discovered at one of our eight public hearings was the 1977 Memorandum by the then-Director of the Third Judicial Department, Richard J. Comiskey, prepared at the direction of then-Presiding Justice Koreman and entitled "Assignment of Attorneys to Represent Individuals who are Financially Unable to Obtain Counsel."  Our Criteria and Procedures build upon that early effort, which may be found at    https://www.ils.ny.gov/files/Hurrell-Harring/Eligibility/Written%20Submissions/6th%20JD/Murphy/1977%20Third%20Department%20Memo.pdf.

 ·         We have heard and we respect the concerns that the implementation of these Criteria and Procedures may, in some localities, increase the number of persons who are eligible for the appointment of counsel. The data collection procedures described at pp. 50-51 are designed to measure that potential fiscal impact. Even in advance of implementation, during this six-month period of preparation, we will attempt to estimate the potential fiscal impact in particular localities; and we will seek additional state funding to pay for any increase in local costs which is attributable to their implementation.

 ·         A comprehensive study that we undertook to inform our establishment of these Criteria and Procedures is available for review on our website, https://www.ils.ny.gov.   That report is entitledDetermining Eligibility for Assignment of Counsel in New York: A Study of Current Criteria and Procedures and Recommendations for Improvement (Final Report: February 12, 2016). The Criteria and Procedures themselves are also accessible on our website.

 ·         As explained at page six, second paragraph, these Criteria and Procedures apply to criminal court proceedings in the counties outside of New York City.  However, we hope that they will provide guidance also to judges making eligibility determinations in criminal cases in New York City, and to Family Court judges statewide.

 Thank you all for your efforts to improve the quality of legally mandated representation in New York.

 Bill 

 William J. Leahy

Director

NYS Office of Indigent Legal Services

80 S. Swan Street

11th Floor

Albany, NY  12210

518-486-5747 (office)

617-997-9091 (mobile)

bill.leahy@ils.ny.gov

http://www.ils.ny.gov


Editor's NOTE:  Forms are included in the appendices to the document.

Here's What You Need to Do with Forms 1095-A, 1095-B and 1095-C

You, your employees or your clients may receive one or more forms that provide information about 2015 health coverage. These forms are 1095-A, 1095-B and 1095-C. The following health care tax tips provide some answers to common questions about these forms: 

Form 1095-A: What you need to do with this form

Form 1095-B: What you need to do with this form

Form 1095-C: What you need to do with this form


State Bar Seeks Changes to Power-of-Attorney Law | New York Law Journal

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ALBANY - The New York State Bar Association is lobbying to change New York's power-of-attorney statute, which its members say is fraught with procedural pitfalls that pose "significant and severe repercussions" for both lawyers and clients.

The bar's Working Group on Power of Attorney said 2008 and 2010 revisions to the power-of-attorney statute failed to meet the intended goal of strengthening protections for potentially incapacitated principals.

Instead, the group says power-of-attorney paperwork is now riddled with "traps for the unwary."

The state bar's House of Delegates adopted the group's findings and authorized a lobbying effort in Albany to have power-of-attorney procedures revert back to simpler pre-2008 procedures by amending General Obligations Law, §5-1501-§5-1514.

Ellen Makofsky, the chair of the panel, said the "continuous" errors being made in preparation of power-of-attorney documents is due to the unnecessary complexity of New York's law.



Read more: http://www.newyorklawjournal.com/id=1202749790544/State-Bar-Seeks-Changes-to-PowerofAttorney-Law#ixzz40UQRUPaq

Open Source "Baby Blue' Project Could Finally Kill the Bluebook

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Lisa Needham reports:

***

The latest turn came this month when open-records activist Carl Malamud tweeted about the coming release of "Baby Blue," 

the name that he and his project partner New York University law professor Christopher Sprigman are calling their rival guide.

Read entire report here.

See Comment by

Please note that a platform able to generate correct citations to legal materials - across multiple jurisdictions - already exists. https://juris-m.github.io 


Juris-M is a third-party project that leverages the Zotero code base, and like Zotero it supports context-sensitive formatting of citations in word-processed documents. I salute the "Baby Blue" project, and look forward to supporting the new guide in Juris-M.



Bankruptcy Forms | United States Courts

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Revised Bankruptcy Forms Go Into Effect December 1

U.S. Bankruptcy Court filers and lawyers must use new forms beginning December 1, when the first modernization of bankruptcy forms in two decades takes effect.

The forms are available at www.uscourts.gov, and contain major changes in organization, language and numbering. Because the new forms will be mandatory for all new cases, users of the bankruptcy system are being urged to read the forms before the change-over date. 

The new forms are easier for debtors to understand and complete, and are designed to work with scheduled enhancements to the federal courts' Case Management/Electronic Case Files system. Together the changes will reduce administrative strains, improve delivery of case information to judges, and protect debtor and creditor rights.

Read more about the new bankruptcy forms.


DIY Law Firm Letterhead, Using Microsoft Word - Lawyerist

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***  Using resources like Typography for Lawyers, a few Word tips, and perhaps a bit of well-placed graphic design help, you can design your own letterhead. Here are step-by-step instructions for designing your own letterhead in Microsoft Word, plus examples from Lawyerist readers who have done just that.1


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ALTA Settlement Statements

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ALTA has developed standardized ALTA Settlement Statements for title insurance and settlement companies to use to itemize all the fees and charges that both the homebuyer and seller must pay during the settlement process of a housing transaction. 

Settlement statements are currently used in the marketplace in conjunction with the federal HUD-1. T

he ALTA Settlement Statement is not meant to replace the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau's Closing Disclosure, which goes into effect on Aug. 1, 2015.

Four versions of the ALTA Settlement Statement are available. - 


Integrated loan disclosure forms & samples

These are downloadable versions of the models and samples that were published in the rule.

Loan estimate

Blank model loan estimate fields annotated to show rule citations
Blank model loan estimate form that illustrates the application of the rule's content requirements (en Español)
Blank model loan estimate that illustrates the application of the optional alternative tables for transactions without a seller (en Español)
Sample of completed loan estimate for fixed rate loan
Sample of completed loan estimate for interest only, adjustable rate loan (en Español)
Sample of completed loan estimate for refinance (en Español)
Sample of completed loan estimate for balloon payment (en Español)
Sample of completed loan estimate for negative amortization (en Español)

Closing disclosure

Blank closing disclosure with fields annotated to show rule citations
Blank closing disclosure that illustrates the application of the rule's content requirements (en Español)
Blank closing disclosure that illustrates the alternative disclosures and modifications permitted for transactions without a seller (en Español)
Blank closing disclosure that illustrates disclosure provided to seller
Blank page 2 of closing disclosure that illustrates modifications to closing cost details
Sample of a completed closing disclosure for fixed rate loan (companion to sample loan estimate above) (en Español)
Sample of a completed closing disclosure for refinance (companion to sample loan estimate above) (en Español)
Sample of the completed closing disclosure for refinance transaction where the closing costs have increased in excess of the good faith requirements
Sample of a completed closing disclosure for refinance in which the consumer must pay additional funds to satisfy the existing mortgage loan securing the property and other existing debt to consummate the transaction
Sample page 3 of closing disclosure (summaries of transactions) for disclosure of consumer funds from a simultaneous second-lien credit transaction
Sample page 3 of closing disclosure (summaries of transactions) for disclosure of funds paid outside of closing

Other blank forms and samples

Blank model form for the written list of settlement service providers
Sample of written list of providers you can shop for
Sample of written list of providers you cannot shop for
Blank model form of the escrow cancellation notice


Go to CFPB page for complete information, including access to webinars.



HUD-1 Going Away: Understand New Closing Forms, Procedures - YouTube-NAR

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The HUD-1 settlement statement and Good Faith Estimate forms are going away on August 1. The Truth in Lending Act disclosure is going away as well. In their place will be a new closing disclosure and a new loan estimate. There will be changes to the closing process as well, including a new rule requiring everything to be in place three days prior to closing. And last-minute changes face new hurdles. Learn about the changes in this walk-through from the NAR.



Fwd: NYS Form RP-5217--Your Comments Sought

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Begin forwarded message:

From: "Wilson, Mark" <MWilson@NYSBA.ORG>
Sent: Tuesday, April 28, 2015 5:08 PM
Subject: NYS Form RP-5217
 

Good Afternoon, 

 

I am writing to county bar leaders and directors for input regarding New York State form RP-5217 Equalization & Assessment forms for real property deed transfers.

 

Concerns regarding the form originated with Kevin Allen, President of the Orleans County Bar Association, who noted that quite a few solo and small-firm practitioners were having issues with county clerks not accepting modified Form RP-5217. 

 

The RP-5217-PDF Real Property Transfer Report in NYS was originally a four-page carbon-copy form available at the County Clerk's office and required for recording any deed. In 2013 the form became a one-part downloadable barcoded pdf form used to document the information associated with real property transfers for approved counties within New York State. An original RP-5217-PDF form must still accompany all deeds and correction deeds upon filing. Here is information about the RP-5217, where instructions note no handwritten changes.

 

The problem noted by the Orleans County Bar is that certain counties are not accepting modified forms: For example, if the phone number is crossed out, the clerk rejects the filing. 

 

Because the new form is bar coded, the new signed form would be required and the deed cannot be recorded. Only the date of closing can be filled in or handwritten in for certain counties. For closings where the buyer or seller may not be local, or if a senior citizen has to come in and sign and resign this causes inconveniences, especially for solos if the form has to be redone online each time there is a change - both buyer and seller sign this form.

 

The Orleans County Bar is concerned with the inconsistency among counties and the practice management issues with rekeying the form each time there is a change because of the bar code. It appears certain counties take modified forms without issue while others are rejecting it outright. It was noted that middle initials being added triggers the form to be rejected. 

 

If your association members have had similar inconsistencies filing Form 5217 with your County Clerk, please let me know. We want to chronicle the concerns of all bar associations regarding this issue. 

 

Thank you and with best regards,

 

image002.jpgMark Wilson  Manager of Bar Services

New York State Bar Association

One Elk Street, Albany, NY 12207

 

direct/fax518.487.5540 |  main518.463.3200 | email:  mwilson@nysba.org | www.nysba.org




As if drafting a legal pleading or brief wasn't work enough, then you have to format it. That means getting the caption just right, assembling the table of contents, building the table of authorities, making sure footnotes are in the right format, etc., etc. And how you do all these things will vary depending on which court you're filing in. Getting the formatting done -- and done right -- can be a huge drain on your or your staff's time.

Stephen DeRosa was practicing as a litigator in New York when he decided he was spending too much of his time making his documents look a certain way. He set out to build a product that would take the hassle out of formatting court pleadings and briefs. The result was DraftLaw.

DeRosa describes DraftLaw as a web-based word processing platform for litigation attorneys. While it is certainly that, its stand-out feature is its ability to take all those words you've processed and automatically assemble them into a perfectly formatted, ready-to-file PDF, complete with caption, table of contents, table of authorities, section headings and citations in proper order. All of this is done in conformance with the style requirements of the specific court you select.

Read more...

Fillable RJI form--NYS Unified Court System

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We are pleased to provide and remind you of this link for the  fillable RJI form.

Remember, this is a fillable form; i.e., when you fill it out, you cannot save your data.  You can print a copy if you need one for your records.


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