Book Review: Money Without Matrimony


MONEY WITHOUT MATRIMONY: The Unmarried Couples Guide to Financial Security, Sheryl Garrett and Debra Neiman, Dearborn Trade Publishing. Paperback $21.95 (248p) ISBN 1-4195-0688-9)

Who knew? If you were in a heterosexual relationship and got married, there would be 1,143 federal laws that protect your personal finances. But since that's not the case for the 1.2 million gay and lesbian couples in America, out lesbians and Certified Financial Planners Sheryl Garrett and Debra Neiman have written Money Without Matrimony to help answer the hard financial planning questions. This well-written book helps gay and lesbian couples "plan around" the federal laws that negate right of survivorship benefits for same sex couples when tragedy arises like the illness or death of a partner. According to Garrett and Neiman, "If you want your partner or someone other than your parents or next of kin - no matter how distant a blood relationship - to sort through your possessions, inherit or distribute your stuff, the situation is far more complicated" than if you were married. Aside from looking at doomsday scenarios the book lays out everyday decisions that both short- and long-term couples should be thinking about like whether or not to merge finances, deciding how property should be rented and owned and the ramifications of each decision. Using easy-to-understand, accessible language, the authors have written a book that is a quick read or an easy reference guide to answer financial questions on the fly. While this book covers some of the same legal ground that can be found in other books on the topic, Money Without Matrimony picks up where the others left off with savvy personal finance advice in addition to legal advice. Filled with sage advice from financial professionals about the unique financial planning issues gay and lesbian couples face, this book forces partners to ask the questions they need to answer until (if) they receive full legal marital rights.

Al Martin is a freelance writer covering personal finance, real estate and investing topics.


MORE RESOURCES:
The 2017 PEN Literary Awards will be presented at the Beverly Wilshire Hotel on October 27, with the Lifetime Achievement Award going to Margaret Atwood.

The honorees are:
Fiction: Black Sheep Boy by Martin Pousson
Creative Nonfiction: When Breath Becomes Air by Paul Kalanithi
Research Nonfiction: The Perfect Horse by Elizabeth Letts
Poetry: Look by Solmaz Sharif
Young Adult: Outrun the Moon by Stacey Lee
Translation: Confessions by Rabee Jaber, translated by Kareem James Abu-Zeid
Journalism: The White Flight of Derek Black by Eli Saslow
Drama: Roe, by Lisa Loomer

Annie Proulx will receive the National Book Foundation's Medal for Distinguished Contribution to American Letters at the awards ceremony on November 15. Anne Hathaway (who starred in the film adaptation of Brokeback Mountain) will present the award.

CNN reports on "the world's coolest bookstores from London to Los Angeles."

Bookstores, libraries and other organizations across the USA are preparing for Banned Books Week 2017, which runs next week, September 24-30. Shelf Awareness takes a look at what some stores are planning...

David Lagercrantz, who continued Stieg Larsson's Milllennium series after the latter's death in 2004, has stated that he will write just one more book in the series, to be released in 2019. This would bring the series to six books - three by Larsson and three by Lagercrantz.

In an op ed for the New York Times, Matt A.V. Chaban, policy director for the Center for an Urban Future, discusses how libraries in New York City, and potentially, in cities across the country, could find much needed funds to modernize and stay relevant for the long term through partnerships with housing and office developments:

"In 2014, the city selected the Fifth Avenue Committee to undertake the novel task of redeveloping the Sunset Park branch. There, an eight-story building will rise, with the first two floors dedicated to a library 75 percent larger than the one there now. The floors above will have 49 apartments, all of which will be rented to low- and middle-income families in perpetuity.

Imagine if the city did the same at the branch in Corona, Queens, where cramped quarters force study groups to huddle on the floor; or Red Hook, Brooklyn, where families from the nearby housing projects are eager for more job training; or Brighton Beach, Brooklyn, where rising sea levels and storms like Sandy threaten its very operations."

Two TV series based on books scooped the top honors at last night's Emmy Awards:

The Handmaid's Tale won five awards including best drama series, best actress for Elisabeth Moss and best supporting actress for Ann Dowd.

Big Little Lies took five prizes in the limited series categories, including wins for Nicole Kidman and Laura Dern.

James Hohmann, national political correspondent for The Washington Post and author of The Daily 202, leads Monday's issue with a look at the many books Hillary Clinton turned to after her election loss:

"What Happened was quickly strip-mined for political nuggets after its publication last Tuesday. As I went through it over the weekend, though, what struck me most was how the wounded Democrat coped after her crushing defeat last November.

In short, Clinton has read voraciously and eclectically — for escape, for solace and for answers.

The collection of works that she cites across 494 pages showcases a top-flight intellect and would make for a compelling graduate school seminar..."

The widow and the biographer of the beloved British children's writer Roald Dahl told the BBC in an interview this week that Charlie Bucket, the young boy whose life is changed by a golden ticket in Charlie and the Chocolate Factory, was originally supposed to be black.

Mrs. Dahl made the remark during a conversation with Donald Sturrock, her husband's biographer, on BBC Radio 4's "Today" program. "It was his agent who thought it was a bad idea when the book was first published to have a black hero," Mr. Sturrock said. "She said people would ask why."

After a nine month dispute, Manhattan's Federal District Court has ruled that Matthew Lombardo's theatrical parody, Who's Holiday! — a dark and decidedly adult sequel of sorts to Dr Seuss's How the Grinch Stole Christmas — does not violate the copyright of the original story.

thatware.org ©