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60 User Interface Design Tools A Web Designer Must Have The best for tools and Web services for powering small and medium-size businesses at a price that isn't through the roof.

Vehicle insurance (also known as auto insurance, GAP insurance, car insurance, or motor insurance) is insurance purchased for cars, trucks, motorcycles, and other road vehicles.

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Sunday, 8 July 2012

Sunday, 1 July 2012

Structured settlement

What Is a Structured Settlement?


Sometimes when a plaintiff settles a case for a large sum of money, the defendant, the plaintiff's attorney, or a financial planner consulted in association with the settlement, will propose paying the settlement in installments over time rather than in a single lump sum. When a settlement is paid in this manner it is called a "structured settlement". Often the structured settlement will be created through the purchase of one or more annuities, which guarantee the future payments.
A structured settlement can provide for payment in pretty much any schedule the parties choose. For example, the settlement may be paid in annual installments over a number of years, or it may be paid in periodic lump sums every few years.

Benefits of a Structured Settlement

One significant advantage of a structured settlement is tax avoidance. With appropriate set-up, a structured settlement may significantly reduce the plaintiff's tax obligations as a result of the settlement, and may in some cases be tax-free.
A structured settlement can protect a plaintiff from having settlement funds dissipated, when they are necessary to pay for future care or needs. Sometimes a structured settlement can help protect a plaintiff from himself - some people simply aren't good with money, or can't say no to relatives who want to "share the wealth", and even a large settlement can be rapidly exhausted. Minors may benefit from a structured settlement as well, such as a settlement which provides for certain costs during their youth, an additional disbursement to pay for college or other educational expenses, and then one or more disbursements in adulthood. An injured person who has long-term special needs may benefit from having periodic lump sums with which to purchase medical equipment or modified vehicles.
In some situations, it will be better for a severely disabled plaintiff to set up a special needs trust, rather than entering into a lump sum or structured settlement. Any plaintiff who is receiving, or expects to receive, Medicaid or other public assistance, or the guardian or conservator entering into a settlement on behalf of a disabled ward, should consult with a disabilities financial planner about their situation before choosing any particular settlement option or structure.

Potential Disadvantages of Structured Settlements

Some people who enter into structured settlements feel trapped by the periodic payments. They may wish to purchase a new home, or other expensive item, yet be unable to muster the resources because they can't borrow against future payments under their settlement.
Some people will do better by accepting a lump sum settlement, and investing it themselves. Many standard investments will give a greater long-term return than the annuities used in structured settlements.

Selling a Structured Settlement

If you have a structured settlement, you may have been approached by a company interested in purchasing your settlement, or may be curious about selling your settlement in return for a lump sum buyout. About two thirds of states have enacted laws which restict the sale of structured settlements, and tax-free structured settlements are also subject to federal restrictions on their sale to a third party. Also, some insurance companies will not assign or transfer annuities to third parties, to discourage the sale of structured settlements. As a consequence, depending upon where you live and the terms of your annuities, it may not be possible for you to sell your settlement.
Keep in mind that companies which buy structured settlements intend to profit from their purchase, and sometimes their offers may seem quite low. You may benefit from approaching more than one company in relation to the sale of your settlement, to make sure that you obtain the highest payoff. You also want to be sure that the company which wants to buy your settlement is established, well-funded, and reputable - you don't want a fly-by-night outfit to obtain the rights to your annuities but to disappear or go bankrupt before paying you the buyout money. You may have to go to court to get a judge to approve the buyout. It is usually a good idea to consult with a lawyer before entering into an agreement to sell your settlement.

Special Considerations

Any person entering into a structured settlement should be on guard for potential exploitation in relation to the settlement:
Excessive Commissions - Annuities can be highly profitable for insurance companies, and they often carry very large commissions. It is important to ensure that the commissions charged in setting up a structured settlement don't consume an inappropriate percentage of its principal.
Overstated Value - Sometimes, after negotiating a particular settlement figure, the defense will overstate the value of a structured settlement. As a result the plaintiff, in accepting the settlement, in fact obtains a significantly lower dollar value than was agreed upon. Some defendants have nominally paid the full amount of the settlement, knowing that they would later obtain significant rebates from the annuity companies they used. Plaintiffs should consider compariing the fees and commissions charged for similar settlement packages by a variety of insurance companies, to make sure that they are in fact getting full value. A plaintiff may wish to make it a condition of the settlement that the defendant will actually pay the full value of the settlement in setting up the structured settlement, and that any rebates received by the defendant for annuities included in the settlement be payable to the plaintiff.
Self-Dealing - There have been cases where the plaintiff's lawyer is also in the insurance business, and sets up a structured settlement on behalf of a client without disclosing that the attorney is purchasing the annuities from his own business, or is pocketing a large commission on the annuities. Similarly, there have been situations where the plaintiff's attorney has referred the client to a particular financial planner to set up a structured settlement, without disclosing that the financial planner will be paying the attorney a referral fee in relation to the client's account. Make sure that you know what financial interest, if any, your lawyer has in relation to any financial services sold or recommended by the lawyer.
Life Expectancy - It is unfortunate, but many people who receive large personal injury or workers' compensation settlements will have a shortened life expectancy as a result of their injuries. It is important to consider life expectancy in association with any structured settlement, and to consider whether it is appropriate to enter into an annuity where payments will cease upon death. Sometimes it will make sense to insist upon an annuity that pays a minimum number of payments, or one that will pay a balance into the plaintiff's estate, such that the value of the settlement is not lost to an insurance company upon the plaintiff's untimely death.
Using Multiple Insurance Companies - For larger settlements, it often makes sense to purchase annuities for a structured settlement from several different companies, dividing the settlement between those companies. This can provide you with protection in the event that a company that issued annuities for your settlement package goes into bankruptcy - even in the event that one of the companies defaults in part or in full on your settlement payments, you would still receive full payment from the other companies.

Additional Resources

Thursday, 7 June 2012

Setting Up A Legal Structure For Your Investing Business

Here's my 7 Step Process to Setting Up a Legal Structure for Your Real Estate Investing Business...(It’s secretly simple!)

When I first began learning about real estate investing, I thought for certain I was “putting the cart before the horse” by setting up a corporate structure for my company when I had no revenue or company assets to protect at the time. I quickly learned (from Jeff Watson; an expert short-sale lawyer and resource of mine), that you really can’t do this step too early in your real estate business or in any business venture of your own for that matter. If you are working hard to get it – work hard to protect it!

The main reason for initially setting up a business structure is to set clear parameters that you and your business are operating as two separate entities in the eyes of the IRS. There are many entity structures to choose from (since I am not an attorney nor an accountant, I can’t professionally advise); but I can tell you that I personally set up an LLC.

The 2 Greatest Pieces Of Information I Discovered When I Wanted To Set Up My LLC Was That:

1) You do not need an attorney to do this

2) It does not cost a ton of money or time

These steps today are customized for people wanting to incorporate in the State of Michigan; however, other states have similar processes and you can use these steps as a guideline. I recommend you start with your state’s Secretary of State website since you can usually find quick links to “starting a business”. Even quicker, simply Google “incorporating in (name of your state)” to start.

Here Are The 7 Simple Steps To Get A Legal Structure Set Up For Your Real Estate Investing Business In The State Of Michigan:

1.) Verify Business Name is Available:
Go to the State of Michigan’s Department of Energy, Labor & Economic Growth (DELEG) website and search the Corporation Division Name Division to be sure your desired business name is not currently being used:

2.) Download Forms:
Go to this link on the State of MI DELEG website and download the following forms:

  • Form 900 – Mich ELF Cover Sheet

  • Form 901 – Mich ELF Application

  • Form 700 – Articles of Organization

    3.) Pay Registration Fee:
    Use form 901 - a one page fax-sheet used to get your credit card on file with the state so you can pay for the $50 LLC registration fee via credit card (I opted to do this because I didn’t want to mail payment via a check, which obviously takes longer). This fee can vary widely by state of course.

    4.) Verification:
    You will know that your credit card is correctly on file with the State because they will fax you back a form with your “new assigned Mich-ELF Filer Number”.

    5.) Complete Articles of Organization:
    Complete form 700 – the Articles of Organization. This is where you write in the desired name of your LLC, the address, and name yourself as the registered agent.

    6.) Fax Articles of Organization:
    Fax the completed form 700 to the State of MI (the # to fax to is on the document); and use form 900 as a cover sheet. You must use form 900 as a cover sheet because that is where you will include that new Mich-ELF Filer Number the State assigned you and this will bill the credit card associated with that ELF number for the processing of your LLC.

    7.) Confirm Status:
    In my experience, within 24 hours, you can confirm the status of your LLC by going to: Type in your entity name to see the filing status, or you can always call the State office to be sure your request has been processed.

    Once completed, CONGRATS! You have taken the first steps to setting up a legal structure for your business!
  • 60 User Interface Design Tools A Web Designer Must Have

    user interface design tools
    The success of web applications and websites depends in how well designed the User Interface is. Designing a good user interface however is a very challenging process. A designer’s concepts and design decisions always affect the end users of the web site, application or generally any user interface or service he has designed. That is why, the dream of every designer is to deliver high quality, enjoyable and valuable experiences for the users. To achieve this goal, it is necessary that a web designer have a collection of web user interface resources and building blocks in his arsenal. There is a variety of User Interface resources that allows you as designer to access, redefine, and create a well crafted User Interface. In this article I am presenting a collection of User Interface Design tools that a web designer can use to realize his design goals. Let us explore these things and further our own craft. Be fascinated!

    User Interface Design Tools

    1. ForeUI

    ForeUI is an easy-to-use UI prototyping tool, designed to create mockup / wireframe / prototypes for any application or website you have in mind. With ForeUI, your prototype project will be skinnable. Easily change the look and feel of your prototype by simply switching the UI theme.

    2. LivePipe UI

    LivePipe UI is a suite of high quality widgets and controls for web 2.0 applications built using the Prototype JavaScript Framework. Each control is well tested, highly extensible, fully documented and degrades gracefully for non JavaScript enabled browsers where possible.

    3. DesignerVista

    Design Professional Quality GUI Mockups using tremendous number of native controls, widgets, clip art, icons, etc. available right in the application. Practically anything you might want to put on a GUI screen is already available, and in high quality art in DesignerVista

    4. Napkee

    Napkee lets you export Balsamiq Mockups to HTML/CSS/JS and Adobe Flex 3 at a click of a button.

    5. iPhone Mockup

    iPhone Mockup lets you create user interface for an iPhone app in a drag and drop system.

    6. Eclipse Stencil for OmniGraffle

    This stencil enables you to easily prototype Eclipse (wizard) dialogs with OmniGraffle.

    7. Gliffy

    Gliffy free wireframe software makes it easy to create website wireframes and to share web mockups with anyone.

    8. Small GUI Pack

    Small Graphical User Interface Elements Pack.

    9. Wireframe Magnets (DIY Kit)

    This DIY magnet template is based on the Konigi wireframe stencils and includes 3 sheets of elements that might be useful in whiteboard prototyping.

    10. Flex 3 Stencil

    Includes all Flex components from Flex 3 Style Guide: panels, data grid, buttons, fields, links, toggle, menu, scrolls, accordion, tabs, list, data picker, tool tip, errors etc.

    11. Facebook Applications

    A pretty sizable collection of Facebook related elements to use in creating wireframes for Facebook applications.

    12. Patternry

    Patternry is a user interface design pattern library aimed to help solve common interface design problems.

    13. User Interface Design Patterns

    User Interface Design patterns are recurring solutions that solve common design problems. Design patterns are standard reference points for the experienced user interface designer.

    14. Pattern Tap

    Pattern Tap is here to satisfy and encourage the inspiration needs of interface design peers and peeps. It aspires to be the one stop pattern shop for your next inspiration need.

    15. User Interface Design Framework

    A free User Interface Design tool for Web Designers.

    16. Lumzy

    Lumzy is a quick mockup and creation and prototyping tool.

    17. Android Asset Studio

    The launcher icon generator will create icons that you can use in your Android application, from a variety of source images. To begin, simply enter the input details below. Output will be shown below.

    18. Mephobox

    Great resource for finding design pattern inspiration. You can browse by user or website, or check out collections based on individual design elements.

    19. Mobility UI Design Elements

    A free set of UI design elements.

    20. Mockingbird

    Mockingbird is an online tool that makes it easy for you to create, link together, preview, and share mockups of your website or application.

    21. Serena Prototype Composer

    Serena Prototype Composer makes it possible to simulate how an application will look and function before any code is ever written.

    22. Fivesecondtest

    Fivesecondtest helps you fine tune your landing pages and calls to action by analyzing the most prominent elements of your design.

    23. Android UI Elements Set

    Free set of classic Android OS UI elements.

    24. Massive Web UI and Button Set

    This set contains all of the following elements in three distinct styles: glossy, satin/light gradient, and one-color. The satin/light gradient set is available in 7 different colors (which you’ll find all of in the psd file), all of these for free.

    25. Best Practice UX Forms Stencil

    This forms contain different button layouts, a progress indicator, captcha code input field, labels and more.

    26. The Pencil Project

    The Pencil Project’s unique mission is to build a free and opensource tool for making diagrams and GUI prototyping that everyone can use.

    27. Mocklinkr

    Use mocklinkr to convey your static mockups as a linked-up and clickable website to impress your clients.

    28. MockFlow

    MockFlow helps to design interactive UI mockups for Desktop Software, Rich Internet Apps and Web sites.

    29. OSX Leopard GUI Set

    The package includes fully editable vector Photoshop sources and a customizable Fireworks PNG file, the original fonts that were utilized for the making of the GUI are also included.

    30. iPad GUI Set

    Everything you need for your iPad app layout in layered, vector PSD files.

    31. iPlotz

    iPlotz allows you to rapidly create clickable, navigable mockups and wireframes for prototyping websites and software applications.

    32. ALL In One Web Elements Kit

    Complete set of web elements you may find very useful for your upcoming project. A huge set of various web elements, easy to modify trough layer styles.

    33. Javascript Kit

    One of the original javascript snippet libraries on the Internet

    34. Concept Feedback

    Post your designs and concepts and get free feedback from the design community.

    35. Webappers

    Lots of jquery components including a very good collection of image editing snippets.

    36. DHTMLX

    DHTMLX is a JavaScript library that provides essential functionality for building cross-browser, Ajax-based user interfaces. Develop impressive web applications faster with a set of ready-to-use UI widgets.

    37.HTML Goodies

    Jquery resource with excellent step-by-step documentation.

    38. Dojo

    Dojo saves you time, delivers powerful performance, and scales with your development process. It’s the toolkit experienced developers turn to for building superior desktop and mobile web experiences.

    39. Code Sucks

    Javascript snippets with extremely detailed write ups about how they work.

    40. Echo 3

    Echo behaves as a user interface toolkit–like Swing or Eclipse SWT. AJAX technology is employed to deliver a user experience to web clients that approaches that of desktop-based applications.

    41. Snipplr

    A good resource with lots of newer scripts and jQuery techniques.

    42. Midori

    Midori is an ultra-lightweight JavaScript framework that gets the job done without getting in your way.

    43. roScripts (beta)

    Scripts, Snippets and Resources that can be voted on by users.

    44. Scripty 2

    Script2 is a powerful flexible Javascript framework to help you write your own delicious and user interfaces. .

    45. Snippet Library

    A library of user-submitted and reviewed snippets and code tutorials from a variety of programming languages.

    46. ZK

    ZK includes over 200 ajax components, all ready to go.

    47. jQTouch

    A jQuery plugin for mobile iPhone application development.

    48. Hot Gloo

    The Online Wireframe Application.

    49. qTip2

    A jQuery upgrade for the qTip tooltip plugin. Easily make stylish tooltips for your site.

    50. WebResources Depot

    Included in their large directory of design resources is a number of very useful scripts and snippets.

    51. Fillerati

    A unique alternative to Lorem Ipsum. Generate blocks of real text for your mockup. Select to receive your text from a variety of public domain works.

    52. Open Source Scripts

    Providing Javascript snippets and code.

    53. HTML Assets

    This is a collection of free Javascript code snippets. It has scripts setting the default focus on page elements (useful for HTML forms), scripts to auto-jump to the next form field when the current form field is full, and scripts to display the current date and time, reload the web page, print the web page, view the page source, close the browser window, and go back to the browser’s previous web page.

    54. Mini Ajax

    A collection of extremely elegant snippets.


    A few very useful snippets for your website.

    56. Editable Grid

    EditableGrid is an open source Javascript library aimed at turning HTML tables into advanced editable components. It focuses on simplicity: only a few lines of code are required to get your first table up and running.

    57. Cacoo

    Cacoo is a user friendly online drawing tool that allows you to create a variety of diagrams such as site maps, wire frames, UML and network charts. It can be used free of charge.

    58. Slidenote

    SlideNote is a customizable, flexible jQuery plugin that makes it easy to display sliding notifications on your website or in your web application. It’s also available as a WordPress plugin.

    59. Denim

    DENIM is a system that helps web site designers in the early stages of design. DENIM supports sketching input, allows design at different refinement levels, and unifies the levels through zooming.

    A quick and simple image placeholder service.
    If you have a plan for selling products and services I’ll recommend you are using a WordPress landing page theme or some WordPress ecommerce themes. Also don’t miss these best wordpress themes if you’re looking for a great theme for your website.