Spidell's Tax Season Tribune: Farewell until 2019!

Well, this is it: the final issue of Spidell's 2018 Tax Season Tribune. Hopefully, we have provided you with some levity over the last few months. As one subscriber put it during the Tribune's first year: "I love Tax Season Tribune. It's up with TMZ as my favorite tax season diversions."

As a special thank you to loyal readers of the Tribune, we would like to offer you a coupon for $10 off your next Spidell purchase! Choose from a seminar, self-study, publication, or research tool ... it can be yours at a $10 savings! Visit www.caltax.com and use coupon code TRIBUNE18.

You're in the home stretch. We'll see you on the other side with more analysis, seminars, and breaking tax news. And, next Sunday, Spidell's California Minute podcast comes back!

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Accountant by day, emergency NHL goalie by night

After the Chicago Blackhawks' third string goalie went down in a game against Winnipeg on March 29, the team enlisted their emergency goalie Scott Foster to come in and finish the game.1 Earlier that day, Foster was working at a financial services firm as an accountant. The last competitive hockey game he played was in 2005 at Western Michigan University.

While playing emergency goalies isn't unheard of in the NHL (last year the Hurricanes put their equipment manager in for eight seconds), most don't play for the 14 minutes that Foster was on the ice to defend the Blackhawks' 6-2 lead. Add to that the fact that Foster didn't let a single puck through (a net operating win?).

On how he managed to stop 100% of the shots that came his way that night, Foster said "You just kind of brace yourself and hope for the best." Advice that works during tax season, too.

1 deadspin.com/give-scott-foster-the-vezina-1824211187

Pet custody battles are multiplying

We've all seen how contentious some divorce cases can be, and we've witnessed the heartaches that couples can go through in child custody cases. But what about who gets to keep Fido? Following the lead taken by Alaska and Illinois, legislation has been introduced in California (AB 2274) that, if enacted, would require courts to look at the care of the animal when deciding whether to grant sole or joint custody of a family pet.

Courts will now have to chew on issues such as who will have more time to spend with the animal and who can cover the vet bills. In one article they even go on to ask who can pay for higher quality food and filtered water.1

Pet custody cases can get quite costly. Just ask the San Diego couple who spent two years and over $150,000 fighting a joint custody arrangement of Gigi the dog ordered by the court, including the cost of a "bonding study" by an animal behaviorist and a videotape, "A Day in the Life of Gigi." In this case Mom won.2

Divorce attorneys saw a 27% increase in pet custody battles from 2008–2013, and even Legal Zoom now has a pet custody agreement and guide, including such issues as how a pet will be transported for visitations and what toys and food will accompany the pets on visits.3

So if you think you've seen some ugly divorce cases before, wait until these new rounds of cat fights hit the courts.

1 "A love contract to help pets deal with parents breakup," Huffington Post at: www.huffingtonpost.com/entry/a-love-contract-to-help-pets-deal-with-parents-breakup_b_7688694.html
2 Mele, Christopher, "When Couples Divorce, Who Gets to Keep the Dog? (Or Cat)" New York Times (March 23, 2017) at: www.nytimes.com/2017/03/23/us/divorce-pet-custody-dog-cat.html
3 www.legalzoom.com/download/pdf/pet-custody-agreement.pdf

A few fun facts about this week's writers:

Kathryn Zdan, EAKathryn Zdan, EA, meets with an all-female photography group once a month and also spends her free time watching classic and foreign movies. Her dream is to recreate the pie fight scene from The Great Race.

Sandy Weiner, J.D.Sandy Weiner, J.D., as California editor, loves all things California. Whether it's hiking at Big Sur or playing at the beach in San Diego where she lives, Sandy takes full advantage of all that California has to offer as a way to clear her head after trying to comprehend and explain California's Revenue & Taxation Code.

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