The Thursday Report 8.16.2012

Providing updates and comments on Florida estate planning and creditor protection developments and insight for lawyers, CPAs, and other planning professionals



Welcome to this week’s Thursday Report, which profiles creditor protection rules that apply in divorce and the Florida Uniform Transfers to Minors Act and its operation.

Each week we will provide a fresh update as well as analysis and ideas associated therewith.  Please send us your ideas for future topics!

These reports are also posted on our website at

We welcome all questions, comments, and suggestions.

Divorce Meets Creditor Protection: A Dynamic Duo

Many clients, as well as divorce and creditor protection lawyers, often ask us what strategies could be beneficial for a client going through a divorce or contemplating a divorce.

This is a difficult area of the law because of the plenary powers held by a divorce judge as well as the significant amount of discretion exercised by the court, which can often be influenced when one party attempts to avoid paying amounts that the court deems are reasonable.

On the other hand, there is solid case law that allows a divorcing spouse’s assets to be immune from seizure by the ex-spouse, even for alimony and child support purposes, subject to the fraudulent transfer rules and other exceptions that can apply.

Our coverage of this topic from Chapter 6 from our recent book entitled Creditor Protection for Florida Physicians, which is available from Haddon Hall Publishing on, and our more in-depth explanation from our Florida Bar continuing education outline entitled “Florida Creditor Exemption Law” can be reviewed by clicking here.

What You Need to Know About Transfers to Minors Act Accounts

Parents and grandparents who desire to make gifts to their children, grandchildren, or any other minor without engaging in complicated transactions may find the estate planning techniques available under Florida’s Uniform Transfers to Minors Act to be of value.  This Act provides a method for allowing a child to own assets (so the investment income appears on the child’s tax return) while an adult, the custodian, is authorized to manage the investments appropriately until the child reaches the age of 21. This process can often be more simplistic and less expensive than establishing a trust, but has its share of pitfalls. (click here to view the full report).


August 17, 2012, 8:30 a.m. – 4:30 p.m.  Nature Coast Medical Office Managers PAHCOM Chapter’s Hot Topics in Physician Law Seminar.  Please let us know if you would like to receive a copy of our 177 page PowerPoint for this presentation.  Details and registration information can be found online at:

August 23, 2012, 4:00 p.m. – 4:50 p.m. Please join us for The 4-4-4 Show, a monthly Clearwater Bar Association continuing education webinar series that qualifies for 1 hour of continuing education credit.  This month’s topic is “Tax Planning in an Election Year” with Ann Paxton, CPA and Jay Wadsworth, CPAs of PDR Certified Public Accountants.  To register please visit:

August 28, 2012, 12:30 p.m. – 2:00 p.m.  Alan S. Gassman, Esq., Kenneth J. Crotty, Esq. and Christopher Denicolo, Esq. are speaking on Avoiding Disaster for Affluent Floridians for our annual Bloomberg BNA Tax & Accounting. webinar on this subject.  To register for the webinar please visit .  For a complimentary copy of our extensive PowerPoint for this webinar please let us [request this].

For details about each event, please visit us online at

Christopher Denicolo, J.D., LL.M. is a partner at the Clearwater, Florida law firm of Gassman, Crotty & Denicolo, P.A., where he practices in the areas of estate tax and trust planning, taxation, physician representation, and corporate and business law.  He has co-authored several handbooks that have been featured in Bloomberg BNA Tax & Accounting, Steve Leimberg’s Estate Planning and Asset Protection Planning Newsletters and the Florida Bar Journal.  Mr. Denicolo received his B.A. and B.S. degrees from Florida State University, his J.D. from Stetson University College of Law and his LL.M. (Estate Planning) from the University of Miami. 

Thank you to our law clerks who assisted us in preparing this report:

Allison Wallrapp graduated summa cum laude from Rollins College and is currently a third-year student at Stetson University College of Law.  Allison serves as a representative in the Student Bar Association and is on the executive board of Stetson Republicans.  Her interests in the law include business law, employment law, and taxation.  Her email address is

Kacie Hohnadell is a third-year law student at Stetson University College of Law and is considering pursuing an LL.M. in taxation upon graduation. Kacie is also the Executive Editor of Stetson Law Review and is actively involved in Stetson’s chapter of the Student Animal Legal Defense Fund. In 2010, she received her B.A. from the University of Central Florida in Advertising and Public Relations with a minor in Marketing, and moved to St. Petersburg shortly after graduation to pursue her Juris Doctor. Her email address is