We are continuing our discussion of 529 plan accounts. As we mentioned in our last post, the plans are useful tools to help parents build up savings for their children's educations. They work a little like individual retirement plans in that the owner builds up the balance over time, often through payroll deduction; any funds withdrawn to cover educational expenses are exempt from federal tax.
It is hard to say when college got so outrageously expensive. Lake County residents have a number of close-to-home options for undergraduate degrees, but even living at home and taking public transportation to school cannot fully mitigate the basic cost of that bachelor's degree.
Just when you think it's safe to go back in the sports pages, the divorce drama of Frank and Jamie McCourt reemerges. The McCourts property division battle has centered on the Dodgers baseball team -- a team that, like Chicago's own Cubs, is sitting at the bottom of its division.
We are still talking about the most recent hearing in the Frank and Jamie McCourt divorce. The couple made headlines for months in 2010 -- and 2011, 2012 and now 2013 -- as they argued over the ownership of the Dodgers baseball team. At the heart of the dispute was a drafting error: The couple signed different versions of the post-nuptial agreement when Frank purchased the team. It was up to the court to determine whether either version was valid.
Frank and Jamie McCourt appeared in court in April to argue a motion Jamie made last fall. The motion, which we discussed in our Sept. 28, 2012 post, asked the court to throw out the couple's settlement agreement because Frank had fraudulently misrepresented the true value of the centerpiece of their divorce, the Dodgers baseball franchise.
Generally, when someone talks about political corruption, the first city to come to mind is Chicago. The legend lives on, it seems. These days, though, worse things are happening elsewhere, and mayors and their contractor co-conspirators are bilking the people of cities that are not Chicago and states that are not Illinois.
This is a story of public officials and corruption, of federal racketeering charges and potentially millions of dollars in hidden assets. It is a story of a woman whose husband owes a lot of money to the federal government and who still has family obligations that he is not meeting. And, as hard as it is to believe, this is not a story about Chicago.
The law works in mysterious ways sometimes. A recent case in Illinios that involved divorce and a religious annulment is a great example.