Wednesday, December 4, 2013
Following Auburn’s epic win over first-ranked Alabama, workers cleaning the field at Jordan-Hare Stadium found an unexpected surprise.
The workers came across cremated remains near the 40-yard line. School officials are not certain whether the remains are human or not, but they did confirm bone fragments to be within the ashes. Auburn associate professor for turfgrass and weed science Scott McElroy says that releasing remains at a stadium like Jordan-Hare is not that uncommon.
See Remains Found at Jordan-Hare, ESPN, Dec. 3, 2013.
Monday, November 25, 2013
Hundreds of items owned by the estate of former St. Louis Cardinal and current hall-of-famer Stan Musial were recently sold off in an online auction, which fetched nearly $1.2 million. Because the auction fetched double what was expected, the estate of Stan “the Man” may have made a crucial mistake.
If the memorabilia sale was double what was expected based on the estate appraiser’s valuation and not the auction house’s valuation, then the estate could find itself with a hefty tax bill. Because the estate may have significantly undervalued assets such as a World Series ring and a letter from Ty Cobb, the estate may have realized an immense capital gain, resulting in an immense taxable gain to the estate.
See Tony Nitti, Did the Sale of Stan Musial’s Memorabilia Give Rise to a Hefty Tax Bill?, Forbes, Nov. 13, 2013.
Special thanks to Jim Hillhouse (Professional Legal Marketing (PLM, Inc.)) for bringing this article to my attention.
Thursday, October 24, 2013
As I have previously discussed, a federal judge recently ruled that under the 1990 Native American Graves Protection and Repatriation Act, the remains of famed athlete Jim Thorpe must be moved from Jim Thorpe, Pennsylvania, to the Sac and Fox Reservation in Oklahoma. The town is currently appealing this decision, hoping to keep Jim Thorpe in Jim Thorpe.
Thorpe’s son, William Thorpe, claims his father repeatedly told family members he wanted to be buried in Oklahoma, his native state. When Jim Thorpe died in 1953, his children held an Indian burial ceremony on the Sac and Fox Reservation with the athlete’s body in full view. Thorpe’s widow, Patsy Thorpe, came and seized the body and then began “shopping [his] body around the country.” She ended up cutting a deal with two struggling Pennsylvania towns that agreed to merge, rename themselves after the great athlete, and build a memorial in his honor.
See David Zucchino, Jim Thorpe, Pa., Fights to Keep its Namesake, Los Angeles Times, Oct. 18, 2013.
Friday, October 4, 2013
ESPN investigative reporters Mark Fainaru-Wada and Steve Fainaru have released a new book entitled, League of Denial: The NFL, Concussions and the Battle for Truth, which exposes a two-decade campaign by the NFL to deny or minimize the danger concussions pose to players.
The book reports how the NFL used its immense resources to discredit independent scientists, conducted their own flawed research, and employed an aggressive PR campaign to keep the public in the dark concerning the debilitating neurological effects experienced by many players.
See Don Van Natta Jr., Book: NFL Crusaded Against Science, ESPN, Oct. 2, 2013.
Special thanks to David S. Luber (Florida Probate Attorney) for bringing this article to my attention.
Thursday, September 26, 2013
Jim Thorpe was laid to rest in 1953 in Jim Thorpe, Pennsylvania, formerly two towns who agreed to build a memorial and name the new town after the famed athlete.
The town is now appealing a ruling that could clear the way for Thorpe’s remains to be moved to Sac and Fox land, which is American Indian land in central Oklahoma that Thorpe’s surviving sons wish to move him.
Lawyers for the town say the judge “erred when he ruled the town amounts to a museum under the 1990 Native American Graves Protection and Repatriation Act.”
See Associated Press, Pa. Town Appeals to Keep Body of Jim Thorpe, The Times-Tribune, Sept. 23, 2013.
Wednesday, September 25, 2013
The University of Alabama Board of Trustees and Paul W. Bryant Jr. recently filed a federal trademark infringement and unfair competition lawsuit aimed at keeping merchandise made by Houndstooth Mafia Enterprises off store shelves.
The company’s merchandise uses the Houndstooth Mafia logo along with a houndstooth pattern background. The University and Bryant complain the merchandise is likely to mislead prospective purchasers into believing they have authorized it in some manner. They also believe the term “mafia” is offensive.
The lawsuit also seeks to overturn a ruling by the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office Trademark Trial and Appeal Board that allowed the Houndstooth Mafia’s trademark application to go forward. The Board found that the houndstooth pattern did not infringe on the university’s merchandise because the university had no trademark right to the pattern. It also found the term “mafia” to be descriptive of Alabama fans and not disparaging to Coach Paul “Bear” Bryant or the university.
See Kent Faulk, University of Alabama Trustees and Paul W. Bryant Jr. in Legal Fight with Houndstooth Mafia, AL.com, Sept. 23, 2013.
Special thanks to Brian Cohan (Attorney at Law, Law Offices of Brian J. Cohan, P.C.) for bringing this article to my attention.
Sunday, August 18, 2013
Although big-time athletes may seem financially secure, a high proportion of professional athletes are completely unprepared following their often-short playing careers.
The average NFL career is 2.7 years and careers in other major sports leagues last only slightly longer. Athletes may come into sudden wealth, but they are particularly challenged when it comes to managing their lifestyles sustainably, investing their wealth wisely, and staying away from unscrupulous advisers. An estimated 78% of pro football players are in financial distress two years after their career, and around 60% of pro basketball players are broke five years after their career.
David Emma, a registered investment adviser who focuses on families with pro athletes, stresses the importance of a second career. Emma says, “At 35, you’re too young to do nothing. If you meet the right people, you can do great things.”
See Andrew Osterland, Athletes Finish Out of the Money, Investment News, Aug. 11, 2013.
Thursday, July 25, 2013
Robert L. Moshman (Attorney, New York and New Jersey) has recently published an article entitled, Midsummer's Madness - 2013 Sports Estates, The Estate Analyst (2013). Provided below is the introduction to the article:
Warren Buffet's advice holds true whether you are Paula Deen or Aaron Hernandez. For Ms. Deen, commercial endorsements have fled in the wake of her admission of using a racial slur in the past.
For Aaron Hernandez, all of the caveats noted in the May issue of The Estate Analyst have been illustrated. A young man signs a $37.5 million contract extension and then surrounds himself with terrible influences. Having late-night conflicts with people in clubs is a recipe for being sued for shooting a man in the face and then arrested for murder. Sports stars should heed this warning: Don't fight with people at clubs, don't shoot people in the face, and don't get arrested for murder. Aaron Hernandez is now done in the NFL.
To contact Bob Moshman to be included on his distribution list of his monthly newsletter, email Bob at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Wednesday, June 12, 2013
Highly-publicized sports figures like Evander Holyfield and Antoine Walker aren’t the only athletes to face bankruptcy after their careers have ended. About 60% of athletes end up in bad shape after retirement.
The main reason athletes face money issues isn’t that all of them are blowing their money on an extravagant lifestyle, but instead it's that the average pro career is only four to five years long. For all the big name players with lengthy careers, there are hundreds of athletes that effectively retire at age 25 or 26. This means a majority of players, usually starting with zero net worth, have to make their retirement savings last six or seven decades to support a lifestyle they’ve gotten used to while young. And their youth only compounds the problem. Many of these 20-somethings are busy figuring out their new life and less concerned with planning for retirement. For many wealth advisors, the main goal should be keeping their clients frugal and making sound investments.
See Scott Martin, Wealth Advisors Can Make the Difference Keeping Pro Athletes from Wasting their Fortunes, The Trust Advisor, June 4, 2013.Special thanks to Jim Hillhouse (Professional Legal Marketing (PLM, Inc.)) for bringing this article to my attention.
Wednesday, May 16, 2012
Now that tax day has come and gone, it's time to look at what could become the butt of many jokes. Sure, everyone dislikes taxes, but it must be particularly bad if you are a sports team owner who has made bad investments on free agents. If only it were possible for these agents to claim their poor investments as a loss. An excerpt from an article covering Arte Moreno's bad investment is below.I encourage you to read the rest of the article; it is a humorous look at taxes from the team owner's point of view:
You have to figure Arte Moreno will soon have a new appreciation for depreciation. That 10-year contract for Albert Pujols will cost the Angels owner $254 million over 10 years. And with Pujols earning only $12 million and $16 million in the first two years, the deal is backloaded so much that Moreno will be writing Pujols a check for more than $30 million in the year the deal expires just shy of the slugger's 42nd birthday. Can Moreno write this off as a gambling loss? Greece and Fannie Mae might wind up looking good by comparison.
See Tax Day Madness: The 10 Players Owners Wish They Could Write Off, Yahoo!Sports, Apr. 16, 2012.
Special thanks to David S. Luber (Attorney at law, Florida Probate Attorney Wills and Estates Law Firm) for bringing this article to my attention.