Author: Linda J. Ravdin

April 9, 2018

Premarital Agreements, Alimony, and the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act

The Tax Cuts and Jobs Act has eliminated the tax treatment of alimony that has been in place for more than 75 years.  Under the old law, alimony is deductible from the income of the payor and includible in the income of the recipient, provided the parties comply with the specific requirements of the Internal […]


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April 2, 2018

Impact of the 2017 Tax Cuts and Jobs Act on Divorcing Families

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In December 2017, Congress rushed to pass the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act:  a 503-page document that drastically alters several of the popular tax credits and deductions around which many divorcing families structure their financial planning.  This first major tax reform in decades affects taxes beginning in 2018 and will have a significant impact on […]

June 20, 2017

Premarital Agreements and the Migratory Couple

A premarital agreement is a contract between persons intending to marry.  It determines spousal rights when the marriage ends by death or dissolution.  All states enforce properly made premarital agreements.  However, laws governing validity vary among the states.  What if a couple signs a premarital agreement in Virginia and later moves to Maryland?  Will a […]

November 15, 2016

Update on Arbitration in Family Law Matters: the New Uniform Family Law Arbitration Act

In July 2016, the Uniform Law Commission (ULC) adopted the Uniform Family Law Arbitration Act (UFLAA).  It can now be considered for enactment by state legislatures.  Ideally, it will be enacted by all states and the District of Columbia so that there will be a uniform approach to arbitration of family law disputes across the […]

May 25, 2016

Arbitration in Family Law Matters: Has Its Time Come?

Alternative dispute resolution embraces a variety of processes designed to resolve legal disputes outside of a formal court proceeding.  One such option is binding arbitration.  In binding arbitration a neutral decision-maker, who could be a retired judge or a lawyer with expertise in the subject matter of the dispute, is appointed make a decision to […]

October 22, 2015

Premarital Agreements & Trusts

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This article was originally published in the American Bar Association’s Family Advocate, Vol. 38, No. 2, (Fall 2015) p. 10-13, and is reprinted here with permission. PDF available here. Adequate financial disclosure is essential to a valid and enforceable premarital agreement. When one party is the beneficiary of a third-party trust or the settlor of his or her own trust, […]

April 6, 2015

Premarital Agreements and the Young Couple

A premarital agreement is a legally binding contract between two people who intend to marry that determines the property rights of the surviving spouse upon the death of the first spouse and that may also determine property and support rights if the marriage ends in divorce. Not so long ago the typical person considering a premarital […]

April 1, 2014

How Much Financial Disclosure is Adequate for a Valid Premarital Agreement?

Too Much is Enough. Two recent cases, one from Maryland and one from Virginia, point up the importance of financial disclosure in premarital agreements. In each case the challenging spouse launched a multi-faceted, and ultimately unsuccessful, attack on the agreement. Inadequate financial disclosure was but one facet of the attack. Had the financial disclosure been done […]

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