On Wednesday, May 28, 2003, President Bush signed the Jobs & Growth Tax Relief Reconciliation Act of 2003 into law. It is currently estimated that this legislation will result in three hundred fifty billion dollars in tax relief. Many of these provisions are retroactive to May 6, 2003.
Here is a rundown of the major provisions of the legislation.
Accelerated tax relief for married couples The 2001 tax legislation promised relief from the marriage penalty, which taxes most dualincome couples at higher rates than if they were unmarried and filing as singles. The relief, however, was not scheduled to apply for most taxpayers until 2005.
The new tax act accelerates this relief. The standard deduction for married couples will be raised from the current $7,950 to $9,500 – twice the standard deduction for single taxpayers. Taxpayers who itemize deductions will not enjoy any benefits, but the majority of couples who take the standard deduction will save $155.
Jobs & Growth Tax Relief Reconciliation Act of 2003 (RobS).pdf
Most employers recognize the challenges presented in managing a workforce on a day-to-day basis. Those challenges are compounded for employers employing more than 50 people who are subject to the
provisions of the Family Medical Leave Act (FMLA). This Act, in essence, provides eligible employees of covered employers with the absolute right to take up to 12 weeks of unpaid leave for their own serious
health condition, for the birth or adoption of a child, or to care for an immediate family member with a serious health condition.
The purpose behind the FMLA is clearly laudatory. It addresses the Hobson’s choice formerly facing employees between dealing with their own illness, the illness of a close family member or the birth or adoption of a child, and the need to continue to provide an income stream for their family. In fact, in the introductory comments to the FMLA, Congress points out that the purpose of the FMLA is to “balance the demands of the workplace with the needs of families, to promote the stability and economic security of families and to promote national interest in preserving family integrity.”
Sick Leave Abuse Police Not to Violate FMLA.pdf
On November 18, 2003, the Appellate Division of the New Jersey Superior
Court reversed a Trial Court decision on the issue of whether survival act and
wrongful death act claims trigger a single policy limit or twice that policy limit. Anthony Galante v. Michael A. May, et al v. Liberty Mutual Insurance Company,
Superior Court of New Jersey, Appellate Division, Docket No: A 2248 02T5
The Trial Judge ruled that where the applicable insurance policy limits were $100,000.00 per person and $300,000.00 per accident, the sum of $200,000.00 would be available, $100,000.00 for the survival act claim and $100,000.00 for the wrongful death act claim.
However, the Appellate Division disagreed and construed the Liberty Mutual Insurance policy language on its face as requiring a single $100,000.00 limit for all claims under both acts.
Appellate Division Speaks Again.pdf