– Est. –
1927

Investor Alert – Fraudsters Target CARES Act Retirement Savings Relief

If you are considering using provisions under the Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security Act (CARES Act) to withdraw and reinvest money from your retirement savings, be aware that fraudsters may be targeting you. Be wary when someone encourages you to use your retirement savings to make new investments. When considering new investments, do your own research and consider contacting an unbiased investment professional or an attorney.

Read More »

Danger: Stressed Out Lawyers Ahead (Tips & Tricks Also Provided)

As a form of self-help therapy for dealing with a global pandemic, I reached out to numerous legal friends and colleagues to learn how they are coping with COVID-19 and this lack of control that we are all struggling with. My article, COVID-19 Lawyer Stress: SOS, was published last month in the Multnomah Bar Association’s newsletter. We are all in the same ocean paddling as fast as we can, but we are just in different boats right now.

Read More »

Digital Assets Webinar: Springwater Wealth Management & Michael Walker

“Do you have an estate plan? Is it complete? Does it address your digital assets? A digital asset is content that is stored electronically. Digital assets include images, videos, files and credentials. If it’s stored on your computer, your phone or in the cloud, it’s a digital asset. ”

Springwater Wealth Management and SYK attorney Michael Walker will be hosting a virtual webinar on July 22nd. The education webinar aims to educate others about digital assets. If you have questions, now is a great opportunity to get them answered, and learn more about what digital assets really are, and when they need to be addressed in your estate planning.

Read More »
New Multnomah County Courthouse

Oregon Supreme Court: Churches’ Challenge Struck Down

A group of churches and public officials in Baker County challenged Governor Brown’s executive orders aimed at slowing down COVID-19. On Friday, June 12, 2020, the Oregon Supreme Court struck down the churches’ challenge.

Previously, Judge Matthew Shirtcliff of the Baker County Circuit Court granted a preliminary injunction, which rejected a number of Governor Brown’s “Stay Home Save Lives” restrictions related to public gatherings and business operations. Judge Shirtcliff ruled that Governor Brown’s restrictions were unconstitutional.

Read More »

Victims of COVID-19 Scams & Cybercrime Need to Act Fast

Cybercrime is becoming ever more pervasive, and with so many more people working at home during the COVID-19 coronavirus pandemic, the risk of a fraudulent wire transfer and other financially motivated crimes is higher than ever. 

Fraudsters use crisis events to target good-hearted investors. The SEC and other federal and state regulatory agencies are paying close attention to COVID-19-related financial fraud, such as fraudulent stock promotions and unregistered offerings, charitable investment scams, and community-based financial frauds.

Read More »

The CARES Act & Divorced or Separated Parents

On March 27, 2020, Congress passed the CARES Act, a sweeping piece of legislation aimed at providing relief to individuals, families, and businesses adversely affected by the Coronavirus pandemic. The Act will have different repercussions for individuals in different circumstances, but the provision with perhaps the broadest impact is the recovery rebate. More commonly referred to as a stimulus payment, the recovery rebate is a one-time payment to US citizens and residents. For most the recovery rebate is good news, but for unmarried, divorced, or separated parents sharing custody of their children, the rebate may usher in unwelcome complications.

Read More »

211info: Community Information Contact Center

Even small children know that they can dial 911 in an emergency. However, many do not know that in Oregon and Southwest Washington they can dial 211 to get access to a variety of community information resources. The 211info contact center is a nonprofit that serves all of Oregon’s and some of Washington’s counties. The organization can provide community members with information and referrals to services in each of the following areas:

Read More »

A Pandemic Economy: Modifying Spousal or Child Support Awards

Oregon’s unemployment rate has risen to a historic high of almost 15% in the wake of the COVID-19 pandemic, leaving many in a state of uncertainty about how they will make ends meet. For those who are party to a child or spousal support award, a change in employment may be grounds for modifying the terms of their support award. When there has been a significant, unanticipated change in economic circumstances, the court will consider a petition to modify a child or spousal support award. You would be hard pressed to find anyone who anticipated the COVID-19 pandemic, so if you have lost your job or are otherwise significantly impacted by the pandemic, you may consider requesting a child or spousal support modification.

Read More »

FINRA Issues Warning: Pandemic Volatility Highlights Oil-Linked ETPs Unsuitable for Some Investors

FINRA, the Financial Industry Regulatory Authority, issued an eye-catching warning in Regulatory Notice 20-14 about a particularly complex and risky type of security: Oil and Gas Exchange Traded Products, or ETPs. High concentrations in the oil and gas sector, especially with complex, risky, and volatile products like ETPs, may become a frequent subject for investor litigation in the upcoming year and fallout of the Coronavirus pandemic. To quote FINRA, “the performance of such products may be linked to unfamiliar indices or reference benchmarks, making them difficult for the average investor to comprehend.”

Read More »

Oath of Office: Colleen Muñoz Joins the Oregon State Bar

We are happy to introduce the newest attorney in the SYK family – Colleen Muñoz.

Colleen is a a graduate of Lewis & Clark. During her time in law school, Colleen clerked for Federal Magistrate Judge Stacie F. Beckerman, volunteered with Innovation Law Lab to assist detained individuals in presenting their asylum claims, and clerked at Passage Immigration Law. Colleen joined SYK as a law clerk during her third year of law school, where she found a home to begin her professional career as a lawyer. She passed the Oregon State Bar earlier this year. Her practice is centered around commercial and fiduciary litigation focusing on real property, employment, and construction law.

Due to COVID-19, her swearing in was a little different than the usual ceremony. Judge Katherine Tennyson joined us via Zoom to administer Colleen’s Oath of Office.

Read More »

Paycheck Protection Program Flexibility Act Signed Into Law

On Friday, June 7, 2020, the President signed the ‘‘Paycheck Protection Program Flexibility Act of 2020’’ (PPPFA) into law. This Act, recently passed in Congress by large bipartisan votes, makes a number of significant changes to the Paycheck Protection Program (PPP), which was passed by Congress on March 25, 2020, as part of the Coronavirus Aid Relief, and Economic Security (CARES) Act.

Here are the key changes made by Paycheck Protection Program Flexibility Act.

Read More »
Senior Loneliness Line

Helpful Video on Paycheck Protection Program Forgiveness Application

We’ve been getting a lot of questions about the Paycheck Protection Program (PPP) and how our clients can maximize the amount that is forgiven. While this is a bit of a moving target, our friends at Geffen Mesher have put together a helpful video on working through the Small Business Association’s (SBA) Paycheck Protection Forgiveness Application that we wanted to commend to your attention.

Read More »

Because Your Government CARES

Valerie Sasaki, of Samuels Yoelin Kantor, LLP facilitated a “Cocktails and Conversation” discussion with the Portland Chapter of Women in Insurance and Financial Services, which explored the recent Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security (“CARES”) Act. The CARES Act is Congress’ comprehensive legislation to provide relief to individuals, families, and businesses that are adversely affected by the Coronavirus pandemic. Despite frequent news coverage and criticism, the scope and effect of the CARES Act can seem impenetrable because it contains so many separate moving parts. In this discussion, Ms. Sasaki walked through the different components of the CARES Act and explained how each works to combat the economic hardship brought about by the Coronavirus epidemic.

The CARES Act is a $2 trillion economic relief package that creates new aid programs and expands existing programs. State and local governments will receive $339.8 billion, the majority of which goes to specific COVID-19 response efforts. The rest of the state and local government relief is divided between education, community development, and family assistance programs.

Read More »

Notice and Comment Period for Proposed Corporate Activity Tax (“CAT”) Rules Ends

Time marches on and the time to comment on several of the Oregon Department of Revenue’s Corporate Activity Tax (“CAT”) rules ends today, May 26 at 5pm. While the Oregon State Bar Taxation Section did not officially comment on the rules, three attorneys, including Samuels Yoelin Kantor, LLP’s Valerie Sasaki, did submit comments on the math problem that is Proposed OAR 150-317-1200. Essentially, the CAT is only imposed on a taxpayer’s Oregon receipts. The question of how to calculate that though, has led to what we believe are some unintended flawed results for taxpayers that have costs and labor concentrated relative to certain income streams. 

While the section did not officially comment, several folks whose names don’t appear on the final comments contributed to discussing the comments and accompanying examples, which you can find below as downloads. We are proud to practice as a part of a community that values good tax policy, even in difficult times.

Read More »

Powerful Words: Positive and Negative Language

Susan Russel shares, through the American Academy of Estate Planning Attorneys, how powerful both positive or negative language can be.  These tips are helpful to keep in mind, whether you are managing a difficult legal situation with your counsel or even if you are managing a quarantine.

Read More »
Scam Alert Network

Top 5 Tips From My Service as a Pro Tem Judge

With the growing divide between judicial budgets and the demand for court services, Oregon continues to look to part-time judges to help bridge the gap. These part-time judges are known as Pro Tem Judges.

As a private attorney serving as a Pro Tem Judge in the Washington County Probate Court, my public service has been a privilege and honor. And having one foot in both private practice and one inside the Court has provided me with a unique experience. The following 5 tips are specific to my familiarity of the Washington County Probate Court, but most of these tips are good best practices to apply to any probate matter in an Oregon court.

Read More »

COVID-19 & Forbearance Agreements

With new times come new terms. Six months ago we had never heard of Coronavirus or social distancing.  Now, we hear those terms so often we look forward to the day we never hear them again.  Another term we’re starting hear in the wake of the Coronavirus outbreak is forbearance. Prior to COVID-19, most of us probably didn’t know what forbearance meant. Unfortunately, the financial impact of COVID-19 will likely cause many businesses and individuals to seek forbearance agreements with their creditors. 

Forbearance means the action of refraining from exercising a legal right, especially enforcing the payment of a debt. A forbearance agreement is an agreement between a lender and a borrower (or a creditor and a debtor) to temporarily suspend the payments owed by the borrower to the lender. Forbearance agreements are often entered into in lieu of the lender filing a lawsuit to foreclose a mortgage or trust deed.

Borrowers, or debtors, adversely affected by the Coronavirus outbreak may need to enter into forbearance agreements with their creditors if unable to make their payments when due. Pursuant to the CARES Act, persons who have a federally backed mortgage can seek forbearance of their mortgage payments for up to nearly a year (they can initially apply for 180 days and then seek a 180 day extension). Many mortgages are federally backed. Interested persons should contact their loan servicer to determine if their mortgage is federally backed.  Even if a mortgage isn’t federally backed, given the widespread financial impact of the outbreak, there is a fair chance the lender has some forbearance or other options available.    

Read More »
Accessibility