How a Living Trust Saves Estate Taxes


When it comes to estate planning, we at Reinfeld & Cabrera P.A. are here to tell you how, together with proper estate planning, a living trust saves estate taxes. As the old saying goes, “nothing is certain but death and taxes”, however did you know that with a living trust and proper estate planning you could reduce or even eliminate estate taxes? If you are still not convinced that you should invest your time in a living trust with an attorney who is well versed in estate planning we suggest you keep reading!

So what is a living trust (also called a revocable living trust)? Basically it is a document that contains instructions about what should happen to your assets when you die. It differs from a will in the fact that it gives you the opportunity to avoid probate at death. A living trust gives YOU control over the assets you leave to minor children and/or grandchildren, and if you become incapacitated it prevents the court from controlling your assets.

Now that you know what a living trust is, the next question you are probably asking is how does a living trust save estate taxes. The first important thing to do when it comes to creating a living trust is to ensure that both you and your spouse utilize your estate tax exemptions. When working with your attorney on your estate planning chat about inserting a tax-planning provision into your living trust which will split the total amount of each spouses estate into two equal trusts. Simply by planning ahead both spouses are able to use their tax exemptions and pay no estate tax.

If, for example, you and your spouse have a combined estate value of $10,680,000 by creating a living trust and utilizing your tax exemption through a tax-planning provision you could split your combined estate into two trusts of $5,340,000.00 , each and save on estate taxes when you and/or your spouse passes away. When you die your trust will use your 5,340,000.00 exemption and then when your spouse dies their trust will use their 5,340,000.00 exemption thus reducing your taxable estate to $0. This way the value of your estate will go to your beneficiaries.

The other benefit of estate planning making use of a living trust is that you can maintain control over how your part of the estate is managed and distributed. Furthermore the assets in your estate will be valued and taxed only at your death and any appreciation after you pass away will not be included in your spouse’s estate. The assets in your trust will, however, be available to your spouse if they need.

While this estate planning feature is only available to married couples, there are other options to help save you taxes if you are single. Simply give one of our experienced estate planning attorney’s at Reinfeld & Cabrera P.A. a call to discuss what options are available to you.

Voted Favorite Estate Planning and Probate Attorneys in Coral Springs by Readers Choice

attorney-in-coral-springsIt’s that time of year again where you get to vote for your favorite businesses in Coral Springs! The Coral Springs City News Reader’s Choice Awards honours outstanding local businesses by allowing the readers to choose their favorite businesses in a number of categories. This year we are happy to announce that we have been voted by you, the readers of City News, as the favorite estate planning and probate attorneys in Coral Springs for the second consecutive year.

There is nothing more important when preparing for your future than having a carefully developed estate plan. If you are looking for a real estate attorney in Coral Springs to help you with your estate planning or any possible probate issues you may have, you will be thoroughly satisfied with attorney Alan J. Reinfeld. With his seasoned knowledge of elder law, estate planning, probate and trust administration he has the ability to council you through the entire legal process and litigate matters on your behalf should the need ever arise. We serve a diverse client base and can help you whether you are starting a family, looking to retire or if you are a business owner yourself. We can help you by writing your will, trust, health care proxy, or by protecting you and your loved ones by avoiding probate.

At the Law Office of Reinfeld & Cabrera, P.A. we pride ourselves for offering some of the finest attorneys in Coral Springs. There are many reasons why choosing an estate planning and probate attorney in Coral Springs from Reinfeld & Cabrera would be a good option. However, the best reason to choose us is that our hard work and professionalism in representing other residents of Coral Springs is rewarded with you having voted us as the favorite estate planning and probate attorneys in Coral Springs by Readers Choice 2014. So make sure that when you are planning for your future you have a Readers Choice recommended estate planning and probate attorney in Coral Springs to give you the peace of mind you deserve.

Voted Favorite Real Estate Attorney in Coral Springs by Readers Choice


Reinfeld & Cabrera P.A. are proud and honored to have been voted favorite real estate attorney in Coral Springs by Readers Choice magazine for 2014. Readers Choice is a publication dedicated to bringing a focus on the people, the businesses, the schools and organizations that enrich the quality of your life in your community. It is for this reason that we feel privileged to have been recognized by Reader’s Choice and voted favorite real estate attorney in Coral Springs. As an attorney in Coral Springs we have made it our duty to ensure that our clients and community receive top priority and personal attention that they deserve.

While we have an already established practice in plantation, which we still consult from, our Coral Springs office only recently opened doors in June 2013. Although we are still considered a reasonably new attorney in Coral Springs we have extended our long-established practice of offering a free consultation and facilitation of house calls in necessary circumstances to our new location. We at Reinfeld & Cabrera P.A. have always endeavoured to provide the highest quality and most affordable legal representation to protect our client’s rights.

At Rienfeld & Cabrera P.A. there are few better than Michael A. Cabrera to turn to for advice concerning real estate law. From 1997 to 2001 Mr. Cabrera proudly served in the U.S. Army and Florida National Guard, after which he began his path toward becoming an attorney in Coral Springs. As a seasoned attorney in dealing with residential and commercial real estate law – including contract review, evictions, foreclosure defense, property damage, title disputes, short sales, and land lord tenant issues – Mr. Cabrera has extended his expertise to litigation involving real estate matters. Adding to this the fact that Mr. Cabrera is fluent in Spanish and English makes him a valuable asset to the community as an attorney in Coral Springs.

The next time you need legal advice regarding real estate issues do not hesitate to contact the law office of The Law Office of Reinfeld & Cabrera P.A. and make a time for your free consultation.

How Do I Evict a Family Member?

Coral Springs eviction attorneyEvicting a normal tenant can be a difficult procedure. However, if this unwanted tenant is a family member the process becomes even more difficult and emotionally taxing. To avoid an already trying situation from getting any worse, use an experienced Coral Springs eviction attorney to help you.

Eviction laws may differ from one state to the next, so if you want to evict a family member in the South Florida area, it is advisable to contact the experienced Coral Springs eviction attorneys at Reinfeld & Cabrera. Using an eviction attorney who practices in your area means that they will have specialised knowledge of the local law procedures and what is needed for an easy eviction process.

Here is a basic outline of what you and your eviction attorney will need to do and the process you will need to follow in order to evict a family member:

  • The first step is to issue a letter informing your family member that you would like them to vacate the premises within 15 days. You will also need to keep a copy of this letter. Consult an eviction attorney concerning the correct requirements that this letter will stipulate.
  • Next, if the family member still refuses to leave you can treat the eviction the same way as you would a normal tenant/landlord situation. You will have to file an eviction case in court. The eviction case is the landlord’s request or formal demand made to the County Court asking for the tenant to be evicted.
  • The court will then serve your family member with an eviction summons. They will have to appear in court to represent their case or else they will have to move out. If it goes to court, you will have to appear in court. This is where an eviction attorney can help you to get the outcome you want.
  • If you have an experienced Coral Springs eviction attorney on your side, your case should be pretty straightforward. You will then be issued a judgment of possession. Your family member will then have a few days to completely vacate the premises.

This should be the end of the process, however, in some cases the family member still refuses to leave. You can then discuss your options moving forward with your eviction attorney.

It is important to remember that if you have more than one family member over the age of 18 who you would like to evict, you will have to serve each one of them with a notice to evict and follow the same procedure.

Whatever the reason for you wanting to evict a family member, the process will be a lot easier and stress free if you consult with a knowledgeable Coral Springs eviction attorney.

Violation of Parenting Plan


You may already know how your divorce can be very difficult for your children and that it can affect them quite severely. This is why having a good parenting plan in place is of the utmost importance for both you and your kids. But what happens when there is a violation of your parenting plan? Or what things constitute as a violation of a parenting plan? To ease your worries and help you make the transition to using a parenting plan the divorce attorneys of Reinfeld & Cabrera, P.A. are here to answer your questions.

When you consult your divorce attorney with regards to drawing up your parenting plan, it is important that both you and your ex-spouse are on the same page. You want it to be as fair as possible while still maintaining the relationship with your kids that you want. Compromises will have to be made from both parties to ensure that a reasonable parenting plan is put into place. This is important because it will mean that a violation of the parenting plan will be less likely.

More importantly, you should know when your parenting plan is being violated and what to do in the case of a violation. Your divorce attorney would have a parenting plan which is unique to your situation; however there are a few common violations which can apply to almost any parenting plan. These include but are not limited to: avoiding payment of child support, travelling with the children without notice, moving away with your children without notice, not letting the other parent provide or help decide on childcare when you are unable to do so, withholding visitation or not following the time sharing schedule. While these are all possible areas of violation, you must remember that each parenting plan is unique to your family. So you should always consult your divorce attorney when it comes to the specifics of your parenting plan.

Now that we have established some possible violations which may arise, what do you do when a violation of your parenting plan occurs? The first thing you should do is to contact your divorce attorney. They will be able to guide you with dealing with the situation. They will know whether the violation is serious enough to pursue in court or if it should just be recorded in case of another incident. It is not always a good idea to take every violation to court as this may become a costly affair and cause resentment between parties. However, it is good to have a record of all violations, major or minor, to build up a solid background for when or if you need to take another violation of parenting plan to court.

At the end of the day, your divorce attorney will be your best asset when it comes to dealing with any issues with the parenting plan that may transpire. They can save you a lot of time, money and heartache while keeping your and your child’s best interests as a priority.

Should I Get a Divorce?

divorce-attorneyAs one of the most difficult and emotional processes to go through, divorce is not something you should face alone. With an experienced divorce attorney – such as Reinfeld & Cabrera P.A. – who is invested in your personal well being, by your side you can feel secure that the process will be as stress free as possible. As a divorce attorney who truly understands the emotional, financial and personal difficulties surrounding divorce, Reinfeld & Cabrera P.A. are here to walk you through some important things to consider when asking yourself “should I get a divorce?”

Often the desire to rush through the struggles of a divorce leaves little time for couples to truly evaluate the feelings, thoughts, options or consequences surrounding a divorce. In wanting to get through the divorce process as quickly as possible, couples are often completely unprepared for the roller coaster of emotions, life-changing decisions and the complicated legal system that comes with divorce. Without the guidance of an experienced divorce attorney who understands their needs, couples generally find themselves making agreements that they cannot sustain and most often find themselves tangled up in messy court cases. Without a divorce attorney who has your best interests at heart the process of a divorce could become a nightmare on top of an already shattered dream.

In Florida there are 3 options to proceeding with a divorce:

Hiring a divorce attorney: often this is the best option, as a divorce attorney will provide you with any legal protection you may need from your spouse as well as investigate all of the details surrounding the value of material assets and spousal earnings.
DIY Divorce: This is best suited to uncomplicated divorces. It allows you to fill out and file all the legal documents and forms with the court on your own.
Pro-se/Pre-suit Mediation: this is based on a mediator who is trained to guide divorcing couples towards an agreement and an uncontested divorce.

Before deciding on which option you will take, you must think about the various legal intricacies that accompany a divorce. Such things include (but are not limited to):

Residency Requirement: To obtain a divorce in Florida, you or your spouse must have resided in Florida for at least six months before the filing of the petition.
Parental Responsibility: Chapter 61 of the Florida statutes that governs divorce provides for “shared parental responsibility”.
Your MSA: Characteristically there are five specific topics that need to be discussed during divorce mediation and then incorporated into the Marital Settlement Agreement (MSA) – Parenting, Equitable Distribution, Alimony, Child Support, and Everything Else.
Equitable distribution: This complicated process is the fair (but not necessarily equal) division of all marital property, assets, and debts governed by Chapter 61 of the Florida statutes.

Concerns about housing, money, children, child support, child care and custody, and alimony are stressful and intimidating. Therefore it becomes important to have a divorce attorney who cares about your needs (and the needs of your family) represent you with the unique skill and understanding required in such a stressful time.

Do I Hire a Paralegal or An Attorney for My Divorce?


When it comes down to it, divorce is always a costly endeavour – whether it cost you your family, your time or your money. However, the divorce attorneys at Reinfeld & Cabrera, P.A. want to help you find the least taxing and most cost effective path through this process. With this in mind, many people have asked – “do I hire a paralegal or an attorney for my divorce?” While we do not profess to have all the answers, we do have some information which might help you to decide what is best for your unique case.

Firstly, you may be wondering what the difference is between a paralegal and a divorce attorney. The Florida Bar defines a paralegal as a person with education, training, or work experience, who works under the direction and supervision of a member of The Florida Bar and who performs specifically delegated substantive legal work for which a member of The Florida Bar is responsible. This means that while a paralegal may have extensive knowledge of divorce law and can help you fill out divorce forms, they are prohibited from providing legal advice or representing a client in court. On the other hand, a divorce attorney is able to provide legal counsel as well as represent a client in court if needs be.

When it comes to divorce many may say that using a paralegal instead of a divorce attorney will save you time and money. This may be the case is your divorce is simple and uncontested or if the chances for a disagreement are slim to none. However, as every divorce is different and each comes with its own unique set of challenges, hiring a divorce attorney early on in the process can save you the hassle and cost of any possible difficulties needing a court settlement. It is not often that the emotional and contentious experience of a divorce will be easily settled without any legal advice needed.

It is also important to remember that in Florida an independent paralegal does not necessarily require any state recognised qualifications to practice. This could result in a client paying for work which is sub-standard or even non-existent. To avoid this, it is advisable to use either a qualified paralegal or, more reliably, a Florida divorce attorney.

All in all, if you are pursuing a divorce it is advisable to have the comfort and safety of an experienced divorce attorney such as the attorneys at Reinfeld & Cabrera.

Preplanning Arrangements – Funeral and Estate Planning


Elder law attorney Alan J. Reinfeld from Reinfeld & Cabrera, PA. is experienced when it comes to helping you with your preplanning arrangements. While preplanning is a highly recommended practice when it comes to your funeral arrangements and estate planning it also comes with its pitfalls. The knowledgeable elder law attorneys at Reinfeld & Cabrera will be able to help you with all considerations to ease you and your family through this difficult process.

Preplanning arrangements are fantastic when it comes to making sure that your family does not have to worry about your funeral or estate after you are gone. It also ensures that your wishes are carried out and that there are sufficient funds left to finance your funeral and cover any other costs that may occur. However, you will need to consult a good elder law attorney to make sure that all of your bases are properly covered and that your preplanning arrangements are legally and financially sound. It is an unfortunate reality that many people try to take advantage of the elderly and the emotional stresses of preplanning by offering unsound legal advice or general preplanning documents which are not tailored to suit your specific needs. It would be a shame for all your preplanning arrangements to go to waste for an issue which could have easily been avoided by referring to a qualified elder law attorney.

A massive pitfall of the preplanning process is the prepaying of services. Recently, some services offering preplanning and prepaying programs have been found to misuse and misspend the money entrusted to them. To prevent this potentially devastating event from occurring, it is prudent that you seek advice from a trusted elder law attorney concerning finding a preplanning and prepaying option which will save you and your family unnecessary costs.

Whatever your decision or wishes are when it comes to preplanning arrangements for your funeral and estate, the attorneys at Reinfeld & Cabrera always have your best interests at heart and will help you through this immensely emotional process.

What is Guardianship?


If you have found yourself wondering “what is guardianship?” then you need the help of a guardianship attorney from Reinfeld & Cabrera P.A. Guardianship is an extremely important legal aspect of life that requires deep thought. With the assistance of a guardianship attorney you will be ensuring that the guardianship over you and your loved ones will be in the best of hands. Without a guardianship attorney by your side you could run the risk of leaving this significant legal aspect up to the courts, who essentially are strangers to you and your loved ones.

Firstly it is important to understand what a guardian is. As per the Florida State Court a guardian is a “replacement decision-maker appointed by the court to make either personal and/or financial decisions for a minor or for an adult with mental or physical disabilities”. In understanding what a guardian is, you should now realize that there are two types of guardianship roles that need to be considered.

1. Guardianship over a minor:
As your child’s parents you will be your child’s natural guardian. As natural guardian you may, in general, act for your child. However, in the unfortunate event of you and your child’s other natural parent dying or becoming incapacitated, the law in Florida will call for a court appointed guardian for your child. Furthermore if your child receives an inheritance or proceeds of a lawsuit or insurance policy exceeding the amount allowed by statute, Florida law requires the court to appoint a guardian for your child. It is good to know that you can designate a guardian for your child in your will. Having a guardianship attorney assist you will ensure that the future of your children is left in the hands of your chosen guardian rather than left up to the courts.

2. Guardianship over an adult:
Should you or an adult loved one lose the ability to make decisions adult guardianship may be appointed. If the Florida court finds a person is so impaired that they are considered incapacitated the court will give the decision making rights of the incapacitated person to someone else. Adult guardianship is only necessary when there are no other less restrictive alternatives (such as durable power of attorney, trust, health care surrogate or proxy, or other form of pre-need directive) available. Interestingly the family can choose a guardian. If the family is able to agree on who should be the guardian, the court will most often accept that choice.

Once minor or adult guardianship has been appointed there are a number of things to consider such as what does a guardian do; is a guardian accountable; is a guardian liable for debts; and, is guardianship permanent? With the help of an experienced guardianship attorney from Rienfeld & Cabrera P.A. all these concerns will melt away and become an easier legal aspect to navigate.

What Happens When A Loved One Dies?


While it is a horrible thought to ponder what happens after a loved one dies, as an experienced probate attorney, we at Reineld & Cabrera P.A. cannot stress enough how important it is to have a plan of action. The period directly after the unfortunate event of a loved one dying can be one of the most difficult and emotionally overwhelming times. Often people find themselves besieged by grief to be able to work through all the important post death processes on their own. Having a probate attorney helping you through the processes will be an invaluable asset. Often families are tempted to do things without the “expense” of a probate attorney. However this frequently leads to even more financial loss as someone without the correct legal knowledge attempts to navigate the probate gauntlet without the guidance of a probate attorney.

When it comes to estate planning and the distribution of assets seeking professional support from a probate attorney is a wise move. Contacting a probate attorney from Reinfeld & Cabrera P.A. for a consultation about your family’s situation will already be a step in the right direction and a great help during this time of anguish.

After a loved one dies you may find yourself in the position of executor of their will. While you may feel confident right now to handle this role, the story may change when you find yourself in the middle of a tragic event. Often emotions cloud logic and distort generally clear minds and you may find yourself falling prey to unidentified legal issues. For example, did you know that when you act as an executor there is a fiduciary liability and exposure attached to you personally if you do not adhere to the terms of a will exactly? Furthermore, did you know that as an executor you could be fined if you distribute funds improperly? With an experienced probate attorney helping you, you will easily avoid these pitfalls.

When you do decide to hire an attorney to assist you with your estate planning or after the death of a loved one, ensure you hire one who is experienced at handling wills, trusts and estates. Avoid attorney’s who don’t specialize in estate planning and instead opt for an experienced probate attorney such as Reinfeld & Cabrera P.A. Make sure you only select a board-certified attorney. Ideally, try to work with an attorney from a firm that has received the highest possible professional standards and ethics rankings.