New Form 1040 for 2019 Tax Season

The IRS today announced plans to streamline the Form 1040 into a shorter, simpler form for the 2019 tax season. The new Form 1040 consolidates the current 1040, the 1040A and the 1040EZ into one form. The IRS will work with the tax community to finalize the streamlined Form 1040 over the summer to ensure a smooth transition.

Tax professionals can review a draft copy of the new Form 1040 and submit comments regarding the draft to

Scout Archives – DPLA: Open Bookshelf

On June 21, 2018, the Digital Public Library of America (DPLA) introduced Open Bookshelf, a one-stop shop for hundreds of e-books that are freely available online. This collection, which currently features over 1,000 books, includes titles that are in the public domain along with titles that are Creative Commons licensed. These titles are selected by the Curation Corps, a team of librarians from across the country that includes public, school, and academic librarians. The books available on Open Bookshelf reflect the diversity of the Curation Corps: the collection features classical literature (including Pride and Prejudice and Little Women), textbooks, academic titles, and children’s books. Visitors may browse this collection by language or genre (e.g. science fiction, education & study aids, and computers). Individual users can access Open Bookshelf through SimplyE, a free mobile application. Open Bookshelf is also available to participating libraries through the DPLA Exchange.

Copyright © 2017 Internet Scout Research Group –

Immigrant children begin appearing in court without lawyers or parents–ABA Journal


Most immigrants facing deportation wouldn’t climb onto a table during their court hearings. But then again, most 3-year-olds don’t go to court without parents or lawyers.

Nonetheless, that was the situation during a recent court hearing for a child represented by the Immigrant Defenders Law Center in Los Angeles.

“It really highlighted the absurdity of what we’re doing with these kids,” Center executive director Lindsay Toczylowski told the Texas Tribune.


A federal judge in San Diego ordered the federal government this week to reunite families within 14 to 30 days, depending on the ages of the children. If the decision is not appealed, being reunited with parents may help the minors make their cases. However, as Reuters notes, some parents have already been deported without their kids. Advocates including ABA ProBAR director Kimi Jackson have observed that there is no federal procedure for reuniting families, and lawyers for adult immigrants say the hotlines the federal government has provided are rarely answered and provide little information when they are answered.

A group of immigrant advocates sued in 2014 for a court order granting lawyers to unaccompanied minors, arguing that it is “fundamentally unfair” to expect children to represent themselves. The suit argued that children needed lawyers under both their due process rights–which courts have repeatedly held applies to immigrants–and the Immigration and Nationality Act’s guarantee of a fair hearing. That case led one Justice Department expert to testify that he’d been able to teach immigration law to young children, a claim mocked by immigration lawyers and at least one late-night comedian.


Read more…

SCOTUS Strikes Down Public Sector Agency Fee-Overturns Abood Precedent

On June 27, the Supreme Court issued a 5-4 opinion in Janus v. American Federation of State, County, and Municipal Employees, Council 31, Dkt. No 16-1466, holding that compulsory payment of public-sector union fees by non-union members violates First Amendment free speech rights.
The petitioner in Janus, challenged the constitutionality of an Illinois law requiring public employees to pay union agency fees despite an employee’s choice not to join the union and his strong objection to the union’s positions in collective negotiations. The petitioner argued that the payment of mandatory agency fees by nonmembers in connection with collective negotiations for government employees is inherently political and violates the First Amendment. Siding with the petitioner and striking down the Illinois law, the Supreme Court overturned its prior 1977 decision in Abood v. Detroit Board of Education, 431 U.S. 209 (1977).

Supreme Court upholds Trump’s travel ban, cites national security justification–ABA Journal


The U.S. Supreme Court on Monday upheld President Donald Trump’s third travel ban in a 5-4 decision.

The court said the travel ban was “squarely within the scope of presidential authority” under the Immigration and Nationality Act, and the plaintiffs’ First Amendment claim was unlikely to succeed.

Chief Justice John G. Roberts Jr. wrote the majority opinion. Roberts said the government had advanced a sufficient national security justification, though “we express no view on the soundness of the policy.” The court reversed a preliminary injunction banning the policy from taking effect and remanded the case for further proceedings.

The court did not decide whether a nationwide injunction was permissible.


Sotomayor said in her dissent that any reasonable observer would conclude that the travel ban was motivated by anti-Muslim bias that violates the establishment clause. The majority decision “leaves undisturbed a policy first advertised openly and unequivocally as a ‘total and complete shutdown of Muslims entering the United States’ because the policy now masquerades behind a façade of national-security concerns,” Sotomayor wrote. “But this repackaging does little to cleanse Presidential Proclamation No. 9645 of the appearance of discrimination that the president’s words have created.”

The case is Trump v. Hawaii.

Hat tip to SCOTUSblog, which quickly summarized the opinion.

Read more…

Upstate Judge Resigns After CJC Finds He Lived in Wrong Town | New York Law Journal

By Dan M. Clark


An Elmira-area judge has agreed to never seek or accept judicial office again after the State Commission on Judicial Conduct found he did not live in the town where he was a judge.

Thomas Brooks resigned earlier this year after the commission found he lived outside the town of Veteran, where he served as a judge, the commission said in a decision Friday.

The commission received a complaint in February that Brooks lived in Erin, New York, rather than Veteran. Section 23 of Veteran’s laws says a sitting judge must reside in the town, according to the commission.

“A judge must meet the statutory residency requirements necessary to hold judicial office,” said Robert Tembeckjian, administrator of the CJC. “Failure to do so is disqualifying.”


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ILW.COM – Legal Education: EB-5 Regional Center Roundtable

Focus: EB-5 Roundtable with Angelo Paparelli

This month’s free 45-minute telephonic EB5 Roundtable with Angelo Paparelli features:
Guest Speakers: Mark Katzoff, Brandon Meyer and Rohit Turkhud
This month’s topic is: China Collapse – India Rising – New Regulations Forthcoming: What’s Next for the EB-5 Program?
Date: Tuesday, June 26, 2018 – Time: 2:00-2:30pm ET
Registration Deadline: 11:00pm (ET), Monday, May 28, 2018
To register, please see:
To view speakers and their biographies, please see:

Warrant Required for Cell-Tower Tracking Data, Supreme Court Rules – CourtSide

By Christopher Coble, Esq.

Today (June 22, 2018), the Court ruled that police must obtain a warrant to get a phone’s location information from cell towers, in certain circumstances. But not every justice agreed with the majority.

You can see the full opinion below:

Carpenter v United States by FindLaw on Scribd

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Tax reform allows people with disabilities to put more money into ABLE accounts, expands eligibility for Saver’s Credit | Internal Revenue Service

If you have clients with disabilities, they can now put more money into their tax-favored Achieving a Better Life Experience (ABLE) accounts. The Tax Cuts and Jobs Act enables eligible individuals with disabilities to put more money into their ABLE accounts, qualify for the Saver’s Credit in many cases and roll money from their 529 plans into their ABLE accounts.

For more information about ABLE accounts and the tax reform changes, visit

Read more…

NY Sues to Dismantle Trump’s Charitable Foundation – FindLaw

By William Vogeler, Esq.

New York’s attorney general says President Trump used his charitable foundation like it was his personal checkbook, including $10,000 he paid from the foundation for a painting of himself.

In People of the State of New York v. Trump, the state alleges Trump wrote a check for $100,000 to settle a zoning dispute for his Mar-a-Lago club. The attorney general is suing to recover $2.8 million in restitution and fines for years of illegal transactions.

The Trump Organization denies the allegations, but one thing seems clear. There was no collusion because Trump signed all the checks himself.


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