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Stephen

Stephen welcomes your questions about legal issues related to older gay men. Please read his bio and disclaimer and contact him through the form at the bottom of it if you have a question for him.

Q: I am being audited by the IRS. At what point should I seek representation?

Posted Jun 18, 2021 6:40PM UTC

Q: I am being audited by the IRS. At what point should I seek representation? I feel as though I have done nothing wrong or deceitful. I have prepared my taxes myself with Turbo Tax.

A: Being audited by the IRS is extremely stressful, as I and the member asking this question know. Having had my own fun with the IRS, I would advise you to immediately find and hire a tax lawyer. Say little or nothing to any IRS examiners on the phone. Also, if you are asked to come in for an interview, and are not represented by counsel, take a tape recorder in with you. They agent will immediately...

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Q: Is Our Domestic Partnership Legal Now That Same-Sex Marriage Is Legal?

Posted Mar 26, 2021 6:50PM UTC

Q: My partner and me have a domestic partnership when we lived together in WA state, even before gay marriage was legal there. In short, he moved to another state and several years later, I followed. We now live together again. What is the validity of the original domestic partnership, is that still legal in the new state, even if same-sex marriage is legal here? We do not want to get married for financial/income tax reasons.

A: Whether your domestic partnership is legal will depend upon which state you now live in. Only ten states have domestic partnership laws (Washington,...

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Why I Became a Lawyer.

Posted Jan 27, 2021 11:00PM UTC

In 1992, I was asked why I wanted to become a lawyer. At the time, I was 39 and was a computer programmer. I had a good job working for a consulting firm developing software for military bases. But, I didn’t want to go back into the closet, nor pretend that my partner, Richard, was simply my roommate, so I let my employer know I was gay. Although most of the company's founders were okay with this, one was a very conservative Catholic, a member of several associated right-wing groups and hostile to homosexuals. An open and unashamed gay man working for him was anathema to him. So, one day I...

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My husband and I want to know if it would be better to have a will or a living trust? And does our primary residence have an effect on the answer?

Posted Jan 25, 2021 11:52PM UTC

There are two parts to this question. First, you are correct (sort of): your primary residence does have an effect, but the most important consideration is your domicile. Although residence and domicile are frequently used synonymously, legally they have different meanings. Residence means "a fixed abode where you actually live for the time being" whereas domicile is "the place where a person intends to eventually return and remain." In other words, you may have more than one residence but only one domicile. As an example, my parents’ domicile was in New Jersey but, as snowbirds, they were...

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Guardianship Question

Posted Jan 25, 2021 11:48PM UTC

QUESTION

This is a subject that disturbs me greatly. I don't expect a specific answer but point me in the right direction for research. It is well accepted that elderly gay men are usually well off financially. Please warn others here to be aware of "guardianship". If they have placed their assets in a revocable trust and become a ward of the state a successor trustee can control the assets and (where do the proceeds go) if one has a partner the partner is pushed aside. I offer Netflix docuseries "Dirty Money" as proof. The two men featured lost millions. My single friend had...

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