For legal questions relating to personal finance. Note that Stack Exchange does *not* provide legal advice; for questions with potentially serious legal ramifications, consult a lawyer specializing in the law in question.

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35
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4answers
9k views

It is legal for a retailer/store or other business to refuse $50 & $100 bills or other legal tender, e.g. pennies?

I'm trying to find out about businesses refusing $50 & $100 bills. Aren't they required by law to accept all legal tender? I had one person say it could be that it's not all legal (i.e. a ...
19
votes
4answers
3k views

After hitting 80% LTV, my mortgage lender refuses to remove PMI. Any recourse?

I recently refinanced my home. At the time based on the appraisal vs. amortization I found I would be stuck with PMI (private mortgage insurance) for about 9 months. I've paid extra on the mortgage ...
13
votes
2answers
14k views

Why is there a limit of 6 ACH transfers out of savings accounts (per month)?

I recently discovered this limit the hard way, after being charged a fee for each transfer over the limit. With online banking becoming so prevalent, this is a huge inconvenience as it prevents people ...
12
votes
1answer
2k views

What US law requires a bank to reopen a closed account if a third party sends money to it?

I used to have an account with a local credit union. I moved, then closed the account. The credit union mailed me a check for my remaining balance and confirmed the account was closed. This was 14 ...
12
votes
1answer
554 views

Can a gift be re-gifted before a Chapter 7 Bankruptcy?

About a month or so ago, I gave a family member $10k to purchase a car, because he needed a reliable car for his two hour commute. He's going through some financial trouble, and is now looking to ...
11
votes
4answers
627 views

Did my salesman damage my credit? What can I do?

I am in the process of purchasing a new truck. A few months ago I put a $500 security deposit down on a truck. I was told that the truck was at a neighboring dealership and that it would take 2-5 days ...
10
votes
4answers
1k views

Will says “divide estate equally”. Life insurance has one named beneficiary. Can proceeds be made estate property?

If a parent dies and leaves a will that divides the estate equally, but also leaves a life insurance plan that names only one child as a beneficiary, can the other siblings force the life insurance ...
9
votes
2answers
748 views

How should I move out of my own house?

About a year ago, my mom and I purchased a house. It was something she really wanted and I was pretty much guilt tripped into moving in. After moving into the home and seeing our relationship go ...
8
votes
3answers
2k views

Can I charge interest on money that I have lent out, even though I am not a financial institution?

On the news a couple of years ago, in BC, they said that if you are NOT an financial institution, it was illegal to charge interest on any money that you have lent out. Now I live in Alberta. And ...
8
votes
3answers
3k views

Is person-person lending/borrowing protected by law?

Suppose that individual A lends his money to individual B. In order for A to be protected, what does he need to do? Is his lending protected by law? (I would prefer to hear the general case, but if ...
8
votes
3answers
581 views

If the beneficiary of a Will is implicated or convicted of the deceased murder, does the Will still stand?

Honestly, I don't consider this to be a valid concern to my own financial planning, but having had the thought, I just wondered whether there are automatic provisions in law to nullify or remove ...
8
votes
3answers
308 views

Help: Being charged interest on a loan for which I received no statements telling me of this debt for the past 15 years. Surprise!

Is this legal? This was a private loan within a small business. I was under the assumption that the bill was paid in full 15 years ago. My only drawback is that I never got them to sign to verify the ...
8
votes
1answer
9k views

How do I sell a home that's owned jointly if my partner doesn't want to sell?

I own a home jointly with a partner. I have made all the payments, taxes and insurance since the beginning. I have a buyer for the home but my partner does not want to sell. How can I override his ...
7
votes
2answers
2k views

Arguments on the “unconstitutionality” of income tax: What acts, etc. of Congress require payment of income tax?

I've heard that while the 16th Amendment gave the U.S. Congress the authority to enact laws for the application of an income tax on US citizens, but I've also heard that there is currently no law on ...
7
votes
2answers
4k views

I am under 18 years old, in the US, my parents have terrible credit, how can I take out a loan?

I am under 18, currently shopping for a car. Like many people, I don't have enough money sitting in my bank account to purchase a good car, around $6,000 to $10,000. However, credit checks have ...
7
votes
2answers
230 views

Why is there an income restriction on contributing to a Roth IRA?

Currently, single adults making more than $112,000 ($178,00 for couples) per year cannot use Roth IRAs I was just wondering what the reasoning behind the income restriction was for the Roth IRA ...
7
votes
2answers
1k views

Legal documents required for managing an investment portfolio among friends?

I am considering setting up a personal kind of hedge fund / stock portfolio among friends. I am trying to figure out what kind of a legal agreement I should have them sign for investing with me to ...
6
votes
2answers
486 views

How secure is my 403(b)? Can its assets be “raided”?

I work at a state university and contribute to my 403(b) retirement account on a twice-monthly basis, maxing out the matching funds. I also contribute a smaller amount to another account, after ...
6
votes
4answers
471 views

Is it legal to hire people to generate traffic on a website?

Why do websites need to do that? It's all written in the title. Thanks in advance for any information on this.
6
votes
1answer
513 views

Family/divorce lawyer wants large retainer before taking on case. Is this normal?

My friend needs to get a separation agreement and divorce. The law firm she called asked for a retainer of several thousands of dollars up front before doing any work. Is a large retainer normal for ...
6
votes
4answers
275 views

Is it illegal to buy derivatives on your own assets?

Is it illegal to buy derivatives on your own assets? Such as student loans you owe, or your own mortgage?
6
votes
1answer
956 views

Funds in closed bank account have gone to the government

My son was advised by his accountant to close his limited company and start a partnership instead. He did this but he was not told that he needed to clear the company bank account - he left this open ...
6
votes
2answers
293 views

What considerations are there for making investments on behalf of a friend?

I've thought of two approaches so far: Pool their money into my own brokerage account and simply split the gains/losses proportional to the amount of money that we've each contributed to the ...
6
votes
2answers
5k views

If a house is in foreclosure what does the bank own vs what the former owner owns

So we were having a discussion about what we would all do if we were unfortunate enough to have our homes go into foreclosure. I asserted that all the appliances and even window blinds would still be ...
5
votes
6answers
4k views

Is there a law or regulation that governs the maximum allowable interest amount that can be charged on credit cards or in agreements where credit is extended?

When I worked in the corporate world, I remember dealing with a company from the U.K. who cited a U.K. regulation on maximum interest/finance charges that necessitated a change in their contract. ...
5
votes
1answer
2k views

Mortgage: Difference between joint tenancy / tenants vs. tenancy in common?

When taking a mortgage, what is the difference between joint tenancy and tenancy in common? Under what circumstances is it preferable to choose one over the other? If your circumstances change how ...
5
votes
1answer
164 views

Which jurisdictions levy a tax on depositum irregulare?

Depositum irregulare arises when a person deposits a certain amount of money or goods to be temporarily kept by another person, who is obliged to return the same amount and type of money or goods, but ...
5
votes
1answer
866 views

An ecommerce retailer forgot to charge my credit card, & I received the package. Legally speaking, must I inform them they didn't charge me?

I recently made a large purchase from an online retailer's outlet store. The online store was having performance problems the day I ordered, but it is large trusted company so I placed the order ...
5
votes
1answer
166 views

In Germany: can i live in a Betriebstaette to circumvent payment of the Rundfrunkbeitrag

While for a flat a person has to pay 17 sth. € per month, while for a Betriebstätte with one person working a company only has to pay 5.99 €. As the company doesn't have to pay anything at all if the ...
5
votes
2answers
2k views

What if only one of two tenants signs a lease?

The title is a little misleading. Lease agreements tend to have multiple forms that need to be signed. In my case there was the actual lease agreement (with checkmarks next to many things that needed ...
4
votes
4answers
435 views

Can you live through a corporation, i.e. conduct personal affairs through a business?

I was curious if it were legal (USA) and possible to live "inside" of a corporation. As in I would purchase a house/car/etc through a corporate entity (I realize I'd likely pay more, but bear with me) ...
4
votes
2answers
345 views

Is it illegal for Canadians to keep money in overseas banks?

The movies are always talking about off-shore Swiss bank accounts and "hiding" money. Is this legal? What is their motivation for doing so? If it is legal (in any way), how can it be profitable?
4
votes
2answers
135 views

Magazine subscription leads to unauthorized recurring payment

I've heard various stories about unscrupulous business practices relating to recurring credit card payments, but this is a new one on me. I've been subscribing to Scientific American for a long time, ...
4
votes
1answer
67 views

What are the laws involved with residency requirements when it comes to purchasing real estate in Shanghai?

Please quote some examples from the laws imposed by the Chinese government, whether it's in English or Chinese (assuming there are a fair number of chinese readers here). Thanks in advance!
3
votes
2answers
20k views

What happens if I move out before my lease ends?

Suppose I sign a one year lease for an apartment or a house and pay a security deposit for the same amount as a month's rent. If I move out before the lease ends I know that my security deposit will ...
3
votes
3answers
210 views

What forms of payment am I compelled to accept?

In relation to this question about maximum amounts a check can be written for If I sell something like a car or other expensive item on Craig's List or in the local paper classifieds, am I compelled ...
3
votes
2answers
3k views

Can wire transfers be reversed? Is there a law or regulation providing for it?

Can wire transfers be reversed? Is this codified into United States or International regulation/law anywhere?
3
votes
1answer
584 views

Can you borrow against a home that you don't fully own, i.e. inherited part, but without estate fully settled?

My brother and I were left our parents' home after they passed. My brother, executor of the will, resided in the house at the time of their deaths and I did not. The home is still in the name of ...
3
votes
1answer
361 views

Do all ETFs fall under the Investment Company Act of 1940?

Do all ETFs fall under the Investment Company Act of 1940? If not, how would a buyer know? Are there legal or financial terms to look for in the prospectus, or will be it spelled out explicitly?
3
votes
1answer
1k views

What is Remittance vs. Arising basis in Tax?

What is remittance and arising basis with regard to tax? From here: http://taxaid.org.uk/situations/migrant-workernew-to-the-uk/income-from-abroad-arising-basis-vs-remittance-basis Arising basis ...
3
votes
2answers
192 views

What constitutes illegal insider trading?

The SEC defines illegal insider trading as: [...] buying or selling a security, in breach of a fiduciary duty or other relationship of trust and confidence, while in possession of material, ...
3
votes
1answer
65 views

When must a health insurance plan provide contraceptive coverage under PPACA?

I'm having a hard time deciphering PPACA as it relates to contraceptive coverage. It seems that all plans that begin after August 2012 must provide it, but there is a "grandfather" clause that allows ...
3
votes
2answers
1k views

Mandatory 401k contributions when a company's plan provider changes?

My company is changing 401K providers. I know I must rollover my funds from the original co. to the new 401K provider, but I did not want to contribute any additional monthly monies to the new plan. ...
2
votes
3answers
181 views

Is there a rule that a merchant must identify themself when making a charge

Recently I sent several credit card payments online. The company that charged my card is a multi-billion dollar company, so not just a small start-up. However on the statements the charges appeared as ...
2
votes
3answers
316 views

If I moved abroad, what happens to the U.S. apartment lease I'd be breaking? Would a debt follow?

I'm moving to the United Kingdom. What will happened to my apartment lease here in the United States? Will that debt follow me?
2
votes
1answer
683 views

How can ponzi schemes be detected and legally prosecuted

Out of curiosity: How can Ponzi schemes be detected? What are the conditions to be classified as a Ponzi scheme and what are the legal means to prosecute them? After all, a Ponzi scheme "operator" ...
2
votes
1answer
128 views

Do tax preparers have to report findings of illegal activities to any IRS?

Do tax preparers have to report findings/suspicions of illegal activities —e.g. failure to file for multiple years— of clients or even potential clients (seeking advice) to either Federal and/or any ...
2
votes
1answer
61 views

Legal requirements to sell design content, artwork and also freelance in India?

I want to start a website where I can sell my digital artwork, 3D models etc at the same time use the site to get freelance graphic design work.I know how to go about it technically but what are the ...
2
votes
1answer
262 views

What standards should I expect of my CPA when an error was made?

I was storing some product at a fulfillment company in California in 2011 & 2012. I live in Florida where I do business from my home. I have been doing my taxes with a CPA so it would get done ...
2
votes
2answers
2k views

How much time does one have to pay an invoice in Australia?

How long, legally, does one have, to pay an invoice? I have done extensive research on this, and there are too many contradictions on the Internet and a lot of it seems, to me, to be hearsay. I cannot ...