Friday, December 16, 2011

Winter 2011 Family Law Update Newsletter Is Here!

The latest news from Oregon and SW Washington's Family Law Experts is here! Our main article focuses on the important, and timely, issues related to divorce and the end of the calendar year. We then highlight Mark Johnson Roberts re-joining the firm, and Andrea Anderly moving on from the firm. We then feature our honorees from Best Lawyers for 2012 and lastly feature our very own Legal Administrator, Darla Pierce, at the DJC awards banquet. You can view our newsletter HERE.

Monday, October 24, 2011

Colorado Finds Dividing Military Benefits Easier Said than Done

The Colorado Court of Appeals decided that a retired serviceman must divide his temporary disability pay equally. The couple had a divorce decree that split military benefits 50/50. The serviceman recently retired and was placed on the Temporary Disability Retired List (TDRL). The court noted that the other spouse should not be punished because the service member was required to be placed on the TDRL and not receive longevity retirement pay. If a party qualifies for longevity pay and instead receives the TDRL pay, they will be required to pay a portion of that TDRL pay.

Here in Oregon, like in Colorado, a military pension or benefit may be considered marital property for the purposes of a divorce. However, as the Colorado court found, it becomes complicated when deciding how and what exactly to split. The Uniformed Services Former Spouses’ Protection Act (USFSPA) also tries to give guidance by allowing state courts to order the splitting of marital pensions. Oregon courts have developed some case law in deciding where the retirement pay and disability pay land, but there is still some questions left to be answered.

As troops begin to start returning from overseas, the federal government has numerous programs and policies to help those troops financially and support them when they decide to retire. A divorce can make that process extremely complex, that’s why service members need representation from attorneys like the ones here at Gevurtz Menashe. The attorneys here make sure to stay on top of the changes that happen in Oregon and around the country to make sure at all of our clients, especially those who serve our country, know exactly what will happen with their retirement and disability compensation during a divorce.

Thursday, October 20, 2011

Shawn Menashe featured in DJC 'BrieflyLegal'

Shawn Menashe was featured in the most recent email edition on the Daily Journal of Commerce 'BrieflyLegal' e-Publication. "Shawn Menashe discovered author/attorney Scott Turow during law school and enjoyed reading novels such as "One L," "The Burden of Proof" and "Presumed Innocent."

Tuesday, October 18, 2011

Nebraska Weighs in on Ordering Joint Tax Returns

The Nebraska Supreme Court recently decided that a Nebraska state court could order a couple to file joint tax returns for unfiled taxes in a divorce judgment. This has been a debated issue around the country because of the confusion over whether federal or state law governs. Generally, tax law is completely within the purview of federal law, but domestic relations are governed by state law. In Nebraska, the courts determined that state law wins out in determining whether a court can order a couple to file a joint return.

The states are fairly evenly split on this issue around the country. The courts here in Oregon have taken the opposite approach of the Nebraska courts. In 1986, the Oregon Court of Appeals decided a court could not order a couple to file a joint tax return. Matter of Marriage of Lewis, 81 Or. App. 22, 723 P.2d 1079 (1986). The Oregon court found that ordering a couple to file joint returns would violate Oregon statutes and the IRS Code. The Oregon court emphasized that the IRS Code allows for a couple to decide whether or not elect to file a joint return and a court order could not remove that right.

Tax issues can make a complex divorce even more complex. That’s why the attorneys at Gevurtz Menashe are trained to look at every last aspect of a divorce, including tax consequences. You want an attorney on your side that will explain every detail of the divorce to you and be with you for every step.

Friday, October 14, 2011

Best Lawyers 2012!, a recognized online attorney directory, has again made their choices of 'best lawyers' for 2012. Five of our attorneys are highlighted as "Best Lawyers": Albert Menashe, Eric Larson, William Howe, Julia Hagan, and Zach Fruchtengarten . This honor, chosen by outsiders to the firm, affirms the community recognition of our talented attorneys! Well done!

Massachusetts Takes a Hard Look at Spousal Support

Massachusetts drastically reforms their spousal support laws. Two weeks ago Massachusetts Governor Deval Patrick signed the Alimony Reform Act into law in Massachusetts. It is intended to instill more clarity and certainty for divorcing couples, but it contains an array of definitions, limits, and formulas that may have some unintended consequences. Family law attorneys in Massachusetts are torn about the new legislation. Some celebrated it because it gives predictability and consistency to legal decision, but others called it Draconian and mean-spirited because of limits on a judge’s ability to create a spousal support plan tailored to the individual needs and requirements of a divorcing couple.

Oregon’s lawmakers will be watching the consequences of the Massachusetts law as they continue to look at their own spousal support laws. There are some laws being proposed at the Oregon legislature that have similar requirements as the Massachusetts law. Like the Massachusetts law, Senate Bill 512 would terminate spousal support upon death, remarriage, or cohabitation. The Oregon Legislature will be looking at what happens in Massachusetts when weighing Senate Bill 512.

Massachusetts has made some pretty big moves in their spousal support law and the lawyers here at Gevurtz Menashe will continue to watch what happens in Massachusetts and around the country. We at Gevurtz Menashe continue to stay on top of the trends in family law to stay ahead of the curve and represent our clients with the most innovate arguments.

Tuesday, October 11, 2011

Fall 2011 Family Law Update Newsletter Is Here!

The latest news from Oregon and SW Washington's Family Law Experts is here! Our main article is regarding an interesting change in inheritance. We then hear from Bob Demary re-joining the firm, and Robin Wright becoming a Shareholder. We move on to introduce Associate Tiffany Jensen, Super Lawyers 2011, Golf Clinic Networking Event, Peas and Thank You Event, and finally our Race for the Cure Team. You can view our newsletter HERE.

Monday, September 19, 2011

Gevurtz Menashe and Race for the Cure

On September 18, 2011, Gevurtz Menashe joined more than 40,000 runners and volunteers for the 20th Annual Susan G. Komen Portland Race for the Cure. As a firm, we accepted the challenge to make a difference in the lives of friends, mothers, sisters, daughters, grandmothers, and neighbors who are have been diagnosed with breast cancer.

Over the past 20 years, Komen has made a difference by increasing the five-year survival rate from breast cancer diagnosed at its earliest stage from 74% to 98%. Gevurtz Menashe is proud to have taken part in this event, and to have helped create more birthdays for over 2.5 million breast cancer survivors!

Thursday, September 1, 2011

Book Signing/ Networking Event September 13!

Get into the swing of fall this September with a special evening with New York Times bestselling author & food blogger, Sarah Matheny. Join us to listen to Sarah Matheny talk about the new art of meatless menus, sample her food, enjoy wine, wonderful giveaways, and network with Portland professionals... all in one place!

Where: US Bancorp Tower, Mezzanine Level, 111 SW 5th Ave, Portland, OR
When: Tuesday, September 13th, 5PM-7:30PM


Hosted by the Women of Gevurtz Menashe and Harlequin Publishing.

Monday, August 22, 2011

Golf Clinic & Networking Event 2011!

August 11 was a gorgeous day and the perfect backdrop for the first Golf Clinic & Networking Event. Held at RedTail Golf Center in Beaverton, the event combined efforts of the Oregon Society of CPAs, Multnomah Bar Association and Oregon Bankers Association to bring together over 75 accountants, lawyers and bankers. Attendees enjoyed a relaxed evening of hitting balls, getting tips on their swing from golf pros and networking.

"We have clients that are always looking for different opportunities and a lot of those opportunities involve getting financing or having a good lawyer to talk to about certain transactions. So the more we network with those types of professionals, the more we can refer those clients to good people," said Marcus Lowe, Fellner & Kuhn PC.

We would like to thank the Barran Liebman, Capital Pacific Bank, Cosgrave Vergeer Kester, and Delap for their sponsorship of the event. Thanks also go out to the Oregon Society of CPAs, Multnomah Bar Association, and Oregon Bankers Association for their contributions and RedTail for helping to make the event a huge success.

Mingle with accountants, lawyers and financial planners at Blackbird Wine and Atomic Cheese Shop in northeast Portland for a great evening of wine tasting and delectable nibbles. Sept 21st, register HERE.

Friday, July 29, 2011

Super Lawyers Honors for 2011

It's one thing to boast of your talents; it's quite another to be recognized by your peers for them. SuperLawyers is a very respected, third-party attorney directory that bestows the "SuperLawyer" title to attorneys who are nominated by their peers. We are very proud to announce our SuperLawers for 2011:

Top 10 Oregon Attorney honor: Albert A. Menashe.
Top 50 Oregon Attorney honor: Eric C. Larson

Oregon SuperLawyer honor was also given to Shareholders: Robert F. Demary, Saville W. Easley, Julia M. Hagan, and William J. Howe III.

Oregon SuperLawyer Rising Star honor was given to Shareholders: Zach J. Fruchtengarten and Shawn N. Menashe.

Oregon SuperLawyer Rising Star honor was given to Associates: Dylan M. Cernitz, Kelly M. Evans, Sharnel K. Mesirow, and Alex P. Sutton.

Congratulations on this high honor!

Golf Clinic and Networking Event - August 11th

The MBA, Oregon Society of CPAs and Oregon Bankers Association have joined forces to offer a Golf Clinic and Networking event at RedTail Golf Center in Beaverton on Thursday, August 11 from 5:30-8 p.m.

This event is designed for golfers of any level. For novice golfers, we have arranged for two golf pros to be on hand to help out and complimentary club rental is available. Seasoned golfers can work on their swing and get some tips from the pros as well. We will even have a ‘Trackman’ golf aid device to help you sharpen your swing! Our group will have access to the upper concourse of the driving range (reserved just for us), including unlimited range balls.

Beyond working on their swing, we anticipate a relaxed evening of networking for our CPA, attorney, and banker attendees. Complimentary hors d'oeuvres and a cash bar will be available. $20 registration. Click HERE for registration.

Sponsorship opportunities available. For more information contact Dylan Cernitz, Gevurtz Menashe at 503.227.1515 or Pamela Hubbs, MBA at 503.222.3275.

Friday, July 22, 2011

Robert F. Demary: Back on the Team!

After a hiatus of 18 years in solo practice, we are excited to welcome Robert Demary as a Shareholder at Gevurtz Menashe. Bob has been serving clients from his office in Lake Oswego. He brings a depth of trial experience to round out our gold-standard family law practice and is a great addition to our team. “I’m happy to finish my career at the same firm in which it began.”, says Bob.

Welcome, Bob!

Robin J. Wright becomes Shareholder

In July 2011, Robin Wright is named as a new Shareholder at Gevurtz Menashe. Robin joined us in 2002 and will continue her legal excellence representing families and children. In addition, Robin was further honored recently with an appointment to the Judicial Screening Committee of the Oregon State Bar.

Congratulations, Robin!

Monday, July 18, 2011

Associates Dylan Cernitz and Kelly Evans Featured in DJC Briefly Legal

"It's probably safe to assume that not long after golf was invented, a group of attorneys high-tailed it to the nearest course to combine business with pleasure.

But with so many marketing, networking and business development tools available these days, has that scenario become nothing more than a dated stereotype?

Fortunately for lawyers who love golf, the answer is “no.” In fact, says national legal marketing pro Margaret Grisdela, golf is a great way to build camaraderie and develop relationships with colleagues and potential clients, particularly in a business world filled with impersonal emails and texts.

“Deals do get done on the golf course, but even if they don't, the game creates a warmer relationship that sets the stage for future opportunities,” Grisdela writes. “Every legal marketing budget should include some greens fees and fun.”

Dylan Cernitz and Kelly Evans, both associates at Portland-based Gevurtz Menashe Larson & Howe and co-chairs of the Multnomah Bar Association's Golf Committee, agree.

“It’s much more intimate when you’re golfing with three or four other people over five hours instead of spending just a few minutes with them,” Cernitz says. “You get to know them a little better than you would in other cases.”

Evans acknowledges that golf takes up a significant chunk of time that could be spent on billable hours, and that having coffee is probably a more time-efficient means of face time. But golf’s value as a marketing tool is appreciated by lawyers across generational lines.

“When we put in a request to go play in a golf tournament, the firm is very supportive, as are most other firms,” Evans says.

Cernitz and Evans offer some tips for those new to the game. First off, make sure the intended guests actually like to play golf. As Evans notes, “it can be a very long, awkward event if the circumstances aren’t right.”

Cernitz reminds players to remember that they are the face of their firm. In other words, play by the rules, be a good sport, avoid alcohol and, in general, keep your professional composure – no matter how much the ball won’t cooperate."

Briefly Legal, Daily Journal of Commerce, July 14th, 2011

Wednesday, May 4, 2011

Summer 2011 Family Law Update Newsletter

The latest news from Oregon and SW Washington's Family Law Experts is here! Our main article is a personal message from Albert A. Menashe announcing our new Managing Partner, Shawn Menashe! We then hear from Shareholder Andrea Anderly and Associate Stephen Brown about summer parenting time. We move on to a chat with Associate Craig Cowley about serving clients in our new Vancouver, WA office. Lastly, Associate Susan Hiler gives us details on Gevurtz Menashe' community involvement. You can view our newsletter HERE.

Friday, April 22, 2011

Albert Menashe passes the torch to Shawn Menashe

As an important part of the Gevurtz Menashe family, I want to share with you some exciting news. As you may have read in this morning's Oregonian newspaper, after nearly 30 years as managing shareholder I'm passing the baton. This past week my son, Shawn Menashe, took over the role of managing shareholder. While Shawn takes over the day-to-day management, I'll continue practicing law with the firm full time.

Since co-founding Gevurtz Menashe in 1982, I've watched as Shawn grew from child to lawyer. After graduating near the top of his class at University of Oregon School of Law and passing the Oregon Bar exam in 2003, he joined the firm as an associate attorney. On January 1, 2009, he became a partner.

I am proud of Shawn's growth as a lawyer, but also his dedication to community involvement. He is active in a number of non-profit organizations, including Make-A-Wish Foundation of Oregon, American Red Cross, and the Oregon Zoo Foundation. Shawn has also been named a "Rising Star" by Oregon Super Lawyers® magazine each year since 2008 and "40 Under 40" by the Portland Business Journal in 2008.

Shawn had multiple offers from other firms and could have chosen any number of areas in which to practice, but he chose family law and to work with me. That is so very gratifying, as a father and as a lawyer. Please welcome Shawn as he works to ensure that Gevurtz Menashe continues to serve family law clients and the community for decades to come.


Albert A. Menashe

Shareholder and Proud Father

Link HERE to Oregon Live Article.
Learn more about Albert A. Menashe HERE and
Shawn N. Menashe HERE.

Wednesday, March 23, 2011

Spring 2011 Family Law Update Newsletter

The latest news from Oregon and SW Washington's Family Law Experts is here! We first congratulate Kathryn Villa-Smith, who recently accepted a Judge position with Multnomah County. We also cover Paige De Muniz's article on remarriage and the impact of previous support obligations. We further recognize Albert A. Menashe's admittance to the Washington State Bar, detail our ability to represent clients all over Oregon, and announce our new Vancouver, Washington office. You can view our newsletter HERE.

Monday, March 21, 2011

Albert A. Menashe Honored by DJC

On Thursday, March 17th, Albert A. Menashe was honored as a finalist in the Daily Journal of Commerce “Leadership in the Law” event. The DJC honors long-standing members of the legal community with the LEADERSHIP IN LAW AWARD. The award recognizes those individuals whose leadership, both in the legal profession
and in the community, has made a positive impact on our state. Albert was honored along with other prominent members of Portland’s legal community.

You can read more the DJC website HERE.

Monday, January 10, 2011

Congratulations, Kathryn!

Gevurtz Menashe is proud to congratulate Kathryn L. Villa-Smith on her appointment by the Governor to the Multnomah County Circuit Court. Kathryn joins a long and distinguished line of former Gevurtz Menashe attorneys who have gone on to serve the public as Oregon judges. Congratulations, Kathryn!