Digital Assets Tax Policy Coalition Formed to Address Tax Treatment of Digital Currencies

In a recent press release, dated March 8, 2017, the Chamber of Digital Commerce and Steptoe & Johnson LLP jointly announced the formation of the Digital Assets Tax Policy Coalition (“the Coalition”). Made in response to a lack of guidance from the Internal Revenue Service regarding the tax treatment of digital currencies, the Coalition aims to “help develop effective and efficient tax policies for the growing virtual currency markets.”

Special Needs Trust Fairness Act Expands Access for Individuals with Disabilities

With the simple addition of two words, the Special Needs Trust Fairness Act (the “Act”) empowers mentally competent individuals with disabilities to establish a special needs trust on their own behalf. Effective December 13, 2016, the Act corrects a legislative drafting error that previously made it necessary for such individuals to rely on either their loved ones or a court to advocate on their behalf.

Ten Estate Planning Resolutions for 2017

As we settle into 2017, the time has finally come to get started on a few New Year’s resolutions. Every year, we can quickly come up with a list of areas in our lives that need improvement. Achieving those goals, however, can sometimes prove to be a less than simple task. One way to get a jump start on making a change is by creating an up-to-date estate plan. Here are some common New Year’s resolutions and how estate planning can be used to your advantage to help achieve them:

Estate Linked to Friend of Bernie Madoff to Pay $250M to Victims

A recent developing story involving Stanley Chais, a friend of the infamous Bernie Madoff and participant in Madoff’s Ponzi scheme, outlines the potential perils that can plague an estate administration involving a bad actor. Stanley Chais’ estate is the subject of a recent settlement in California which, pending approval from a New York federal bankruptcy judge, is expected to provide approximately $15M in restitution to California’s attorney general and over $250M to a trustee recovering funds for Madoff’s victims.