January 2017 - Kamerow Law
Estate Planning: What You Need to Know About Charitable Giving

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5001 Seminary Road, Suite 110
Alexandria, VA 22311
Phone: 703-370-8088
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Estate Planning: What You Need to Know About Charitable Giving

For many people in Virginia, Maryland and Washington, D.C., charitable giving is a way of life. By giving to charity, you will be able to support the activities of a worthwhile organization for years to come. If you are a donor, considerations for charitable giving may be an important part of your estate plan. It is critically important that you structure your estate plan properly so that your resources can provide the maximum benefit to your family and to causes that are important to you.  

Charitable Giving: Understanding Your Options

Ultimately, the best estate planning method to donate to charity will depend entirely on your individual circumstances. Many different factors will need to be reviewed by your estate planning attorney, including the type of assets you possess, the type of organization that you are supporting, and how the rest of your estate plan is structured. For some basic perspective, some of the most popular options for leaving charitable bequests include:

  • Giving a lump sum payment: If you want to leave money directly to a charity, your best option may be to use your will. This is an easy method that can be used if you want to grant one lump sum payment to a beneficiary of your choice.
  • Gifting assets: If you are looking to leave assets to a charity, whether real estate or a stock portfolio, things can be a little more complicated. You do not want to accidentally leave the charity with tax problems or tilting issues. Fortunately, an estate planning attorney can help you plan ahead so that you are able to pass on any of your assets on without trouble.
  • Charitable Trusts: You may choose to use one of the common charitable giving trusts to leave your gift. Both Charitable Remainder Trusts (CRTs) and Charitable Lead Trusts (CLTs) are frequently used as estate planning tools in this circumstances. These trusts offer several key benefits, including certain tax advantages. The trust that makes the most sense for your particular situation will depend on your goals. For example, a CRT easily lets you leave some money to a relative while paying the interest to a charity. Alternatively, a CLT lets you structure a monthly or annual annuity payment to a charity of your choice.
  • Starting a family foundation: Finally, in some cases, you may wish to start your own personal or family foundation for a charity. Family foundations can be useful in a lot of different situations. For those who are giving a large amount of assets and would like to have some involvement with the charity during their lifetime, a family foundation may be the best option available.

Our Estate Planning Team Can Help

At Kamerow Law Firm, PLLC, our dedicated estate planning attorneys have more than twenty-five years of experience offering our clients cost-effective legal services. We are located in Alexandria and proudly serve clients throughout the Washington, D.C. metro region. Please do not hesitate to call our office today at (703) 370-8088 to schedule your free initial consultation.

Bicyclists Have a Right to the Road

Bicyclists face a major safety threat from automobiles. According to a report filed by Greater Greater Washington, more than 100 bicyclists have been killed in car accidents in our region over the last two decades. Many thousands more have suffered serious injuries. Often, these accidents take place simply because motorists do not know how to share the road with bikes. Bicyclists have a legal right to the road. If you were injured in a bike accident anywhere in the Washington metro area, please contact our Alexandria bicycle accident attorneys today for immediate legal assistance.

Bicyclist Rights: Correcting Three Common Misconceptions

Myth #1: “That bike should get out of my way.”

The Reality: Cyclists have the right to control an entire lane.

Too many drivers in our region fail to understand the fact that cyclists have a right to control an entire lane. When a bike is on the road, the rider can, and should, ride in the center of their own lane.

Myth #2: “What is that bike doing in the left lane? It should not be there.”

The Reality: Bicyclists should use the left lane when appropriate.

Bike riders are obligated to follow most standard traffic regulations. Of course, this means that when a bicyclist needs to make a left turn, he or she should be in the far left lane. Unfortunately, drivers sometimes get frustrated and confused when they see a bike in the left lane. This is because drivers simply do not know the rules of the road. Cyclists have every right to the left lane when turning left.

Myth #3: “My car can squeeze by this bike.”

The Reality: The unsafe passing of a bicyclist is unlawful and dangerous.

Unsafe passing leads to many serious bike accident injuries each year. Trying to squeeze your vehicle past a bicyclist is known as ‘buzzing’. At least 30 jurisdictions in the United States have laws that protect bikes against ‘buzzing’. Both Virginia and the District of Columbia are included on this list. Under these laws, you are required to give cyclists at least three feet of clearance when you pass them. If there is not enough room to give a three-foot clearance, you simply must wait to make a pass. Please be patient when passing bicycles. You do not want to put someone else’s safety at risk.

Our Bike Accidents Lawyers Can Help

If you were injured in a bicycle accident, you need aggressive legal protection. At Kamerow Law Firm, PLLC, our attorneys have helped many injured pedestrians and bike accident victims recover full and fair compensation for their damages. To learn more about what we can do in your case, please contact our office today to request your free case evaluation. We serve victims in Alexandria and throughout the region, including in Washington, D.C. and Maryland.  

Medical Malpractice: Birth Injuries

Unfortunately, birth injuries still happen far too frequently in the United States. According to a study conducted by the Healthcare Cost and Utilization Project (HCUP), approximately 160,000 preventable injuries occur to infants and mothers during childbirth each year. Some of these injuries can be quite serious, even having life-altering ramifications. Birth injury victims deserve justice. If you or your infant suffered an injury during birth, please contact an experienced medical malpractice attorney today to learn more about your legal options.

Five Common Malpractice-Related Birth Injuries

While birth injuries take many different forms, researchers at the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) have found that the following five complications are the most common:

  • Fractures: Fractures generally occur when a medical professional is too rough with a newborn infant. The most common type of fractures are to the shoulder and the collarbone. Fortunately, most fractures heal without long-term problems.
  • Brachial Palsy injuries: This type of injury also generally occurs as a result of a doctor being too rough with an infant during the delivery. A brachial palsy injury happens when damage is done to the nerves that control the arms. Nerve damage during birth is always serious and can have long-term consequences.
  • Hip Dysplasia: Hip dysplasia is an abnormality that affects the development of a person’s hip. This type of injury is often not caused by the birth itself. However, medical professionals have a professional duty to catch this abnormality as soon as possible in a young infant. By taking quick action, medical professionals can help to alleviate the pain and adverse effects that come with this condition. If a doctor fails to identify and correct hip dysplasia in a timely manner, they can often be held liable for medical malpractice.
  • Brain injuries: During the birth, most infants will experience very short periods of oxygen deprivation. However, if these periods extend for too long, serious brain damage can occur as a result.
  • Facial paralysis: When too much pressure is applied to an infant’s face during the birth, facial nerves can sustain major damage. This nerve damage can have long-lasting impacts and can even result in partial paralysis of the face.

What Type of Compensation is Available for Victims?

Birth injury victims and their families are legally entitled to compensation that accounts for the full extent of their losses. Our attorneys can help you seek recovery for any direct financial losses, your non-economic losses, and long-term damages. More specifically, we can help you recover:

  • All medical costs;
  • Any expenses associated with rehabilitation;
  • Long-term disability;
  • Lost of future income;
  • Pain and suffering;
  • Disfigurement; and
  • Loss of life enjoyment.

Contact Our Office Today

Birth injury medical malpractice claims are notoriously complex. At Kamerow Law Firm, PLLC, our attorneys have the experience necessary to help protect your legal rights and financial interests. If you or your infant was a victim, please call our Alexandria office today at (703) 370-8088 to set up a free review of your claim. We serve victims throughout Northern Virginia, including in Arlington, Sterling, and Fairfax.