Thursday, February 16, 2017



Understanding Real Estate Contracts and What You Can Expect to Find


There are a lot of things that go into the successful sale of your home, but many people are unfamiliar with the intricacies of the contract. Whether you consult with your real estate agent or plan on diving in on your own, it's important to be clear on the terms. If you're wondering what you can expect when it comes to the contract, here are some pointers on what to watch out for.

Real Estate Jargon
A real estate contract would not be complete without the professional terminology, so you'll see words like amortization, price-to-income ratio and title that may impact the meaning of your contract. Instead of going it blind, search the Internet for terms or consult with your real estate agent to provide a clear explanation.

Specifics On The Sale
Information regarding the specifics of your property will be present in the contract, and it's important to check this information before signing on the dotted line. While the address and location of your home are important, it's also critical to verify the purchase price that has been decided upon, the closing date on the property and any other items that have been negotiated and agreed upon.

Be Aware Of Withdrawal Terms
It can be easy to be taken away by excitement once you've received the perfect offer on your home, but it's important not to lose sight of everything that's required before the sale has been finalized. One of the most important parts of the contract is the withdrawal terms that are laid out, so be certain you're aware of what your rights are if you or the home buyer decides to withdraw from the process.

Watch For Seller's Responsibilities
If you, as a seller, do not remain committed to the terms of the contract this can be a deal breaker, so ensure that you've familiarized yourself with exactly what's required of you. This may include everything from the maintenance on the property to offer negotiations, so it's important to comply with these terms.

Dealing with a real estate contract can be confusing for the layman, so it's worth your while to have a trusted real estate agent around who will be able to explain it. From withdrawal terms to seller responsibilities, there are plenty of things you should be aware of before sealing the deal. If you're currently embarking on selling your home, you may want to contact one of our real estate professionals for more information.

Looking to buy or sell? Call us first at 888-670-8845.

Tuesday, February 14, 2017



What to do if you’re questioned or detained by ICE:
1) No ICE officer should stop anybody based on appearance alone; regardless of your ethnicity, the color of your skin, the way you dress or talk or the language you’re speaking. It’s the law.
2) If an immigration officer asks for proof that you are a legal resident of the United States and wants to see some identification, you have the right to refuse to give them your ID. You can also refuse to answer any of their questions. Unless they have a warrant, you have no obligation to interact with them at all. You can ask “Am I arrested?” If the answer is no, you do not need to give them any information regarding your legal status in the U.S. Showing them ID is totally optional.
3) If you are being interrogated do not give false information, and do not give them false documentation. You can be charged with identity theft if you show them forged documents, or someone else’s documents, even if you have legal status. Remember that everything you say or do can be used against you.
4) If immigration officials (ICE) begin to knock on your door you have the right not to open the door. They only have the right to enter to your home if they have a warrant from a judge.
5) If you are arrested in an immigration detention center and you don’t want to return to your home country, you have the right to request a meeting with an immigration officer.
6) Do not sign anything you don’t understand. You might be signing a voluntary deportation order.
7) Some cases can be resolved with the help of an immigration attorney. The lawyer can request for a court date to meet with an immigration judge and help solve your case. You don’t have the right to an attorney provided by the state, but you do have the right to see your own attorney. Call the Law Firm of Figeroux & Associates, at 855-768-8845
8) Who should you call: Your family member to contact an immigration lawyer. When you enter an immigration center, they will assign you an A#, which is you’re alien number. Make sure you give your A# to the people you talk to on the outside helping with your case. If you have no one else to call you should call the Law Firm of Figeroux & Associates at 855-768-8845.

THIS IS NOT LEGAL ADVICE - CONSULT AN ATTORNEY.

Friday, February 10, 2017




Big Snow Storm Can Bring Slip and Fall Accidents

The biggest snowstorm to hit the northeastern United States so far this winter left behind over a foot of snow, widespread power outages, significant travel disruptions, black ice and slippery sidewalks. Thousands of people are injured each year when they trip, or slip and fall on an icy sidewalk.

Premises liability law covers slip and fall and other types of accidents caused by dangerous conditions on someone else’s property.  In order for a property owner to be held legally responsible for injuries sustained by an individual slipping and falling, one of the following must be true:
  • That the property owner knew about the dangerous condition and did not attempt to correct it
  • The property owner should have known about the dangerous condition and should have taken steps to prevent injuries, as a “reasonable person” would have done
  • That the property owner created the dangerous condition which led to the accident
Often, such injuries are caused by the negligence of another person. If you have been injured while on another person's property, you may be able to file a claim against the property or manager if negligence resulted in your slip and fall accident. Consult an experienced, aggressive Brooklyn, New York premises liability attorney or slip and fall attorney at Figeroux & Associates immediately for a case evaluation.

New York slip and fall accidents are very complex and often difficult to prove. A thorough understanding of the ever-changing and fact-specific laws regarding the various and numerous incidents that result in premises liability is essential to successful legal representation.

At Figeroux & Associates, we understand these factors and will go beyond the obvious to find the person responsible for the negligence that caused you injury or suffering. Contact us at 718-834-0190, for a free consultation.




Tuesday, February 7, 2017

Subway & Train Accidents

Every day, over 4 million New Yorkers use the subway system to go to work, school and other activities. The subway trains, platforms and infrastructure are not always properly maintained and repaired, creating a dangerous situation for the people who rely on them as their main mode of transportation.
If you or someone close to you has been injured in a subway accident in New York, the attorneys at Figeroux & Associates are here to offer experienced advice and advocacy. We are well versed in the legal challenges of bringing a suit against the Metropolitan Transportation Authority (MTA) and can guide you through all of the necessary legal steps.

Contact us today online or by telephone at 718-834-0190 to speak with an experienced New York City subway accident lawyer.

Remember, if you have been injured in a subway accident in New York, you have only 90 days after the date of the accident to file a lawsuit against the MTA. It is important to consult with a New York personal injury lawyer as soon as possible, so you do not lose your right to compensation.

The Dangers of the New York Subway System
There are many ways to get injured in the New York subway system. The following is a brief list of subway dangers:
- Doors closing on people
- People getting dragged along with the train
- Slippery surfaces caused by leaking pipes and other hazards
- Snow and ice on the outdoor subway steps and platforms
- Assault, robbery and other crimes taking place due to negligent security
- Electrical injuries on the train tracks
- Our attorneys investigate subway accidents thoroughly and will work to identify the cause of your accident. Oftentimes, subway accidents are the result of negligence on the part of the maintenance staff, the train operator or other MTA personnel. Our New York public transportation injury law firm will work to identify all liable parties, to help you obtain full and fair compensation for your subway accident injury.

New York Train Accident Attorneys
Serving Manhattan, Brooklyn, Queens, Staten Island and the NYC Metro Area. If you or someone close to you has been injured due to the negligence or carelessness of another, our personal injury lawyers are here to help.

Contact at 718-834-0190 to speak with an experienced New York City subway accident lawyer.

Monday, February 6, 2017

First-time Home Buyers: Here's a Quick and Easy Guide to Your First Mortgage


Delving into the real estate market for the first time can be a very intimidating thing with all of the mortgage and housing options available. Whether it's market conditions or the amount you should be spending, there are a number of factors you'll need to be aware of. If you're just starting out and not sure where to begin, here are some points to consider that will set you on the right path.

Is It the Right Time to Buy?
Many people try to time the market, but the right time to buy a home is when it works for you. If you have a solid down payment and you're truly prepared for home ownership, it's probably the right time to start looking. While a good home and low interest rates can certainly push you in this direction, if it's not quite the right time, hold off until it's right for you.

What's Your Payment Plan?
It's easy for a first-time buyer to be taken in by their dream home, but it's important to be clear on all the costs associated with home ownership like property tax, insurance, maintenance and other fees that will bump up the monthly payment. If you can formulate a budget that includes all of your monthly costs and is feasible in the long term, you're good to go.

What Documentation Is Required?
Having your personal documentation in order and available will be one of the most important steps in your application, but there are a number of things you'll need. Beyond recent pay stubs, tax returns and bank statements, you'll also need your credit report, so take a look over it to ensure that it's correct and displays your financial history in a positive light.

Starting the Search
You may be ready to move as soon as you start looking, but buying your first home can be a rather lengthy process. Instead of being sucked in by too much house or taking the first things that appeals to you, ensure that you have a good sense of the size, neighborhood and style of house you want so you can get out there and find the home that works for you.
   There are a lot of things to consider when it comes to buying your first home, but by being ready to invest and having your finances in order you'll be well on your way. If you're currently on the market for a home, you may want to contact one of our mortgage professionals at 888-670-8791 for more information.

Thursday, February 2, 2017

Claiming an Elderly Parent or Relative as a Dependent 

Are you taking care of an elderly parent or relative? Whether it's driving to doctor appointments, paying for nursing home care or medical expenses, or handling their personal finances, dealing with an elderly parent or relative can be emotionally and financially draining, especially when you are taking care of your own family as well.
Fortunately, there is some good news: You may be able to claim your elderly relative as a dependent come tax time, as long as you meet certain criteria. Here's what you should know about claiming an elderly parent or relative as a dependent:

Who Qualifies as a Dependent?
The IRS defines a dependent as a qualifying child or relative. A qualifying relative can be your mother, father, grandparent, stepmother, stepfather, mother-in-law, or father-in-law, for example, and can be any age.
There are four tests that must be met in order for a person to be your qualifying relative: not a qualifying child test, member of household or relationship test, gross income test, and support test.

Not a Qualifying Child
Your parent (or relative) cannot be claimed as a qualifying child on anyone else's tax return.

Residency
He or she must be U.S. citizen, U.S. resident alien, U.S. national, or a resident of Canada or Mexico; however, a parent or relative doesn't have to live with you in order to qualify as a dependent.
If your qualifying parent or relative does live with you, however, you may be able to deduct a percentage of your mortgage, utilities, and other expenses when you figure out the amount of money you contribute to his or her support.

Income
To qualify as a dependent, income cannot exceed the personal exemption amount, which in 2016 (and 2017) is $4,050. In addition, your parent or relative, if married, cannot file a joint tax return with his or her spouse unless that joint return is filed only to claim a refund of withheld income tax or estimated tax paid.

Support
You must provide more than half of a parent's total support for the year such as costs for food, housing, medical care, transportation and other necessities.

Claiming the Dependent Care Credit
You may be able to claim the child and dependent care credit if you paid work-related expenses for the care of a qualifying individual. The credit is generally a percentage of the amount of work-related expenses you paid to a care provider for the care of a qualifying individual. The percentage depends on your adjusted gross income. Work-related expenses qualifying for the credit are those paid for the care of a qualifying individual to enable you to work or actively look for work.
In addition, expenses you paid for the care of a disabled dependent may also qualify for a medical deduction. If this is the case, you must choose to take either the itemized deduction or the dependent care credit. You cannot take both.

Claiming the Medical Deduction
If you claim the deduction for medical expenses, you still must provide more than half your parent's support; however, your parent doesn't have to meet the income test.
The deduction is limited to medical expenses that exceed 10 percent of your adjusted gross income (For tax years 2013-2106, this amount is 7.5 percent if either you or your spouse was born before January 2, 1949), and you can include your own unreimbursed medical expenses when calculating the total amount. If, for example, your parent is in a nursing home or assisted-living facility, any medical expenses you paid on behalf of your parent are counted toward the 10 percent figure. Food or other amenities, however, are not considered medical expenses.

What if you share care-giving responsibilities?
If you share care-giving responsibilities with a sibling or other relative, only one of you--the one proving more than 50 percent of the support--can claim the dependent. Be sure to discuss who is going to claim the dependent in advance to avoid running into trouble with the IRS if both of you claim the dependent on your respective tax returns.
Sometimes, however, neither caregiver pays more than 50 percent. In that case, you'll need to fill out IRS Form 2120, Multiple Support Declaration, as long as you and your sibling both provide at least 10 percent of the support towards taking care of your parent.
The tax rules for claiming an elderly parent or relative are complex. If you have any questions, help is just a phone call away.