Equitable Vs. Equal

Serious E-Commerce:

Insurance vs Audit

Good Marketing:

Book Buying Benefit

Maple Leafs’ Exports

Y2K-versation

Corporate Angels

Participate Please

Corrections or additions?

These articles by Barbara Fox and Melinda Sherwood were published

in U.S. 1 Newspaper on November 3, 1999. All

rights reserved.

Survival Guide

Top Of Page
Equitable Vs. Equal

Equitable is not the same as equal, and that’s a common

misconception among women who enter divorce litigation, says Sudha

Tiwari Kantor, an attorney with Stark and Stark at 993 Lenox Drive.

"In actuality, equitable means fair," says Kantor. Fairness

is determined case by individual case and by looking at the overall

picture of each family’s circumstances. Courts apply 15 factors, set

forth in a state law, to divide up assets and liabilities that the

parties accumulated during their marriage. These factors range from

the length of the marriage to the tax consequences of the property

distribution.

Kantor is one of the attorneys conducting "What Every Woman Should

Know Before, During and After Her Divorce," on Wednesday, November

10 at the Stark & Stark Lenox Drive office and on Wednesday, November

17, at Freehold Gardens, both at 6:30 p.m. In addition to three

attorneys

(including Maria P. Imbalzano and Frances M. Merritt)

there will be financial planners (Neelam Jain of AXA Advisors,

Terri Simonds of Amper Politziner & Mattia, and Sharyn Maggio

of Rosenfarb Winters) plus therapists, Robert Rosenbaum of Bunker

Hill Consultation Center, and psychologists Henry Weistuch, Elaine

Hicks, and Amy Altenhaus.

The Stark and Stark program is geared towards women, says Kantor,

because "we don’t want husbands and wives to show up

together,"

but also because most of the inquiries come from women. "Men

usually

have attorneys that are available to them or friends who are

attorneys."

A lot of women are thinking about divorce, but often they don’t have

access to informal consultation and they don’t have funds for money

o to their attorneys because every time they ask they get billed."

The seminar is free. Call 609-895-7307.

Born in New Delhi, Kantor moved to the U.S. at the age of six and

her family still resides in Cherry Hill. She received a BS in

political

science from Rutgers, Camden, Class of 1990, and a law degree from

Rutgers in 1993.

The stereotype of the rich divorcee, says Kantor, represents a select

few women, says Kantor. Women still stand to lose the most in a

divorce,

particularly if they have spent some time out of the workforce.

"Still

to this day it’s the women who are lower income earners, and it’s

the women who are responsible for the day to day needs of the

household,"

she says. "When it comes to divorces, a woman’s quality of life

is more likely to decrease substantially and a man’s quality of life

to increase significantly." They lose more than income, she adds.

"They give up health insurance benefits and a retirement plan

too."

Even if a woman retains a certain amount of assets, she says, they

can still get hit hard. "A lot of women don’t understand the tax

pitfalls of getting the house, that they have to pay capital gains

tax," she says.

Alimony is also taxed, and new laws and changing attitudes are

affecting

how these are awarded to women, says Kantor. "The changes that

I’ve seen occur in the last six years or so is that alimony is not

favored," she says. "Less and less alimony is awarded, and

fewer and fewer men are willing to pay."

Limited duration alimony — as opposed to permanent or

rehabilitative

alimony — is still relatively new in the courts, and it allows

the court to set a termination date on alimony payment. It is

determined

on a case by case basis, explains Kantor, taking into account the

following factors: a spouse’s need for living assistance, the ability

of the other party to pay, the duration of the marriage, the living

standard in the marriage, the joint acquisition of assets in capital

income, the history of the financial or non-financial contributions

to the marriage of the party, including contributions to the care

of children, and other income available to each party from other

investments.

The court can also determine a spouse’s eligibility for alimony, and

set the criteria, based on his or her age, physical and emotional

health, earning capacity and employability (based on absence from

the job market or training involved), education, parental

responsibilities,

and the likelihood that he or she can maintain a reasonably comparable

standard of living after divorce.

Men are not the only ones who typically leave the courtroom unhappy,

says Kantor. "Women don’t walk away very happy either," she

says. "When the parties are educated about what the laws are,

then their expectation isn’t like what happened on LA Law. They’re

more realistic. If he’s making $68,000 and she’s capable of making

$50,000, they’ve been married for a long time, and he’s accepted that

she’s not a worker, and that’s how they’ve developed their marital

enterprise, then that will continue basically. He will have to expect

that they will live off his $68,000."

But a woman in her 30s who in a five-year marriage has two kids and

a degree in computer science is not going to get alimony for the rest

of her life. "She will get some help to reestablish herself in

the workforce, but she can’t sit back and watch TV. Now, depending

on her age, the court is going to say, `Look you had it good for all

of those years, so now you’re going to have to think about what you’re

going to do with your future.’"

Top Of Page
Serious E-Commerce:

Unified Approach

As retailers get revved up for a holiday season of

Web-shoppers

— the latest word is that footwear companies are finding Web sales

to be very profitable — two E-commerce seminars are scheduled.

Technology New Jersey has an ongoing series at Mercer County College,

and Amper Politziner Mattia has scheduled a seminar in Edison. A

division

of the accounting firm, Amper Consulting, presents "Effective

Implementations of E-commerce/E-business," on Thursday, November

11, at 8 a.m. at the Pines Manor in Edison. Call 732-287-7849 for

free reservations.

"Unlocking Your E-Commerce Potential," is the topic for

Jenifer

Williams of Sun-Netscape Alliance, and Phyllis Michaelides,

of AlliedSignal Inc., on Wednesday, November 10, at 8 a.m. at Mercer

County College. Cost: $45 for those who are not TNJ members. Call

Technology New Jersey at 609-419-4444.

Michaelides is manager of technology strategy and architecture

corporate

information systems. In "Building a unified E-commerce

architecture,

now and into the future," she will cover everything from

mainframes

to handheld devices.

Williams is principal strategist of Worldwide Strategic Consulting

for the Alliance, formed last March between American Online and Sun

Microsystems. Its mission is to help companies "realize their

Net Economy vision — putting the power of the Internet in their

hands with the broadest and best Internet infrastructure and

E-Commerce

software and professional services."

Williams has been a consultant at Ernst & Young and another

international

consulting firm. Working with senior executives at companies ranging

from Fortune 50s to start-ups, she has consulted on how to

revolutionize

a business and operations with E-business. She has also developed

digital strategies. Among her pointers:

Get input from all departments , because the digital strategy

will impact your entire enterprise. It is more than just a web page.

Align it with your traditional business, tying in your front and back

offices.

Don’t base your digital strategy on how you do business today

in your traditional setting. Toys R S was very much focused on

their traditional business, and now it is rethinking its strategy.

Speed the implementation . Don’t wait until you have it

100 percent worked out. Barnes & Noble is a good example; it will

have a difficult time catching up with Amazon.com. The first mover

advantage is very important in the Internet setting.

Top Of Page
Insurance vs Audit

Honest mistakes in Medicare billing can result in a

$10,000 fine, says Robert Schultz, vice president of Princeton

Insurance Company, on Alexander Road. The firm is sponsoring a free

seminar, "Government Billing: What Every Physician Should

Know"

on Wednesday, November 10, in Cherry Hill. It will be repeated on

November 11 in Whippany and on November 18 in Absecon. Call Sandy

Schulz at 609-734-8461 for a reservation.

Whistle blower rewards of up to $1,000 encourage Medicare

beneficiaries

to report unscrupulous billing, whether real or perceived. Meanwhile,

risk assessment software, which looks for likely candidates for

government

agencies to audit, does not distinguish between honest and dishonest

practitioners. His suggestions:

Put in place a compliance plan , including written policies,

training, and education of staff, self-auditing, and designing a

compliance

officer. Hire a consultant for about $1,000 to $1,500 or look for

advice from the American Medical Association

(http://www.ama-assn.org/physlegl/doc1c.htm)

Audit your own files regularly . Pull charts of 15-25 Medicare

patients and ask if they are legible, if documentation supports the

billing code, if the diagnosis matches the billing code, if the doctor

signed and dated notes for each visit. Is the patient identified by

birth date or account number as well as name?

Don’t underestimate your chance of being investigated .

For every $1 the government spends on audits and legal costs it is

getting $23.

Princeton Insurance Company attaches "government billing errors

and omissions" coverage to its New Jersey physician and surgeon

medical malpractice policies. It provides up to $50,000 in legal

defense

coverage for inadvertent billing errors but does not cover claims

of intentional fraud.

Top Of Page
Good Marketing:

Simple as PIE?

The problem with marketers today is there is a lot of

implementation but very little planning and evaluation. "Too many

people skip over the planning and want to jump right to the

implementation,

the ready, go, get set syndrome" says Brian Jud, president

of Marketing Directions Inc.

There should be an organized approach to product promotion, Jud feels,

who uses the acronym "PIE" to illustrate three tenets of

marketing:

Planning, Implementation, and Evaluation. Jud will be extolling the

virtues of the "PIE" approach at the upcoming New Jersey

Communications,

Advertising, & Marketing Association (CAMA) meeting scheduled for

Thursday, November 11, at 11:30 a.m. at the Doral Forrestal Hotel.

Call 609-890-9207. Cost is $25 for members and $35 for non-members.

Jud’s firm helps authors and book publishers with every part of the

publishing process, from editing, cover design, layout, printing,

planning, and promotion. Jud feels that the best publicity is the

kind that’s free. "I try to emphasize to my clients the value

of having third party credibility," says Jud. Look at potential

opportunities from a reporter’s perspective. "Position your

company

or client to provide information that is useful to the reporters

audience."

Jud has written several career transition books and hosts the Book

Authority, a cable access television show on the book business. Jud

has also produced a video program entitled "You’re On the

Air,"

featuring producers from Good Morning America, Larry King Live, and

CNBC and focussing on ways to garner media coverage and credibility

as an expert news source. "An association of civil engineers used

the tape series to help position themselves as experts on building

structure issues. The goal would be that the local media would seek

comment from a civil engineer following a bridge collapse, for

example."

There are many "little" things companies can do to keep their

names in front of the press. Sometimes that can be as simple as

consistently

sending out press releases on client or company activities. But a

lack of coordination can derail even the best creative efforts. Jud

points out the importance of bringing together all aspects of a

marketing

plan: advertising, publicity, sales promotion (direct mail and

giveaway

items) and personal selling (trade shows). "If I’m doing a book

promotion in Albuquerque and the book I’m promoting is not yet in

the bookstores there, it defeats the whole plan."

Jud is a 1972 graduate of the University of Cincinnati and has an

MBA from Xavier. A resident of Avon, Connecticut, Jud has a background

of 20 years in corporate sales and marketing positions — starting

with Xerox. "That was really great sales training to have right

out of the box," said Jud. After Xerox, Jud held several other

sales and marketing positions before starting his own advertising

agency in Ohio. In 1980 Jud moved to Connecticut to join a Hartford

area agency, Mintz and Hoke. He started Marketing Directions in 1990.

Words to the marketing-wise? " I can’t emphasize enough the

importance

of planning, of coordinated planning that is goal oriented and

measurable.

Good marketing can be as simple as pie but not as easy."

— Jeff Lippincott

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Book Buying Benefit

A mix of charity and shopping and entertainment is

scheduled

for Saturday, November 13, at Borders Books & Music when Princeton

Chamber members can get a 20 percent discount off purchases. Each

purchase of books or music will benefit the Habitat for Humanity of

the Trenton Area. And live entertainment is scheduled for all day

long: a story hour at 11 a.m., followed by magician Ed Smoot

at 1 p.m. and a booksigning by Eileen Marx, author of "Weaving

Faith and Family" at 2:30 p.m." An interactive musical performance

for children is at 4 p.m., Larry Garland plays pops at 5 p.m.,

and Vince DiMura offers jazz at 7:30 p.m. Sales continue to

11 p.m.

In order to get the discount you have to get special coupons. Call

the chamber at 609-520-1776 or Kathryn Orrick at 609-514-0029

to order the coupons. Provide the business name, address, phone,

contact

person, and number of employees who need coupons. Borders will mail

the coupons to you.

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Maple Leafs’ Exports

Rick Savone is the new Canadian Consul and Trade

Commissioner in Princeton, and on Thursday, November 4, he is hosting

an invitation-only reception to help launch the Canadian-American

Chamber of Commerce. Michael B. Phillips, the Consult General

of Canada, will introduce the newest members of Canada’s regional

Business Development Team. Steven Richman, an attorney with

Gallagher, Briody & Butler, chairs the Canadian-American Chamber of

Commerce.

A native of Ottawa, Ontario, Savone majored in economics and business

at McGill, and worked in government before being recruited by the

Canadian Foreign Service. He served in Algeria, where he was

responsible

for political and immigration programs, and came to Princeton this

year. Like two previous consuls, he lives at 90 Westcott

(609-252-0777,

E-mail: rick.savone@dfait-macci-ge.ca). From there he operates

what is considered the satellite mission of the Canadian Consulate

General in New York (http://www.canapple.com).

Because New Jersey’s riches are in the brains of its scientists —

the state is said to have the highest concentration of scientific

brainpower in the nation — Savone’s export/import efforts will

concentrate on areas of biotechnology, information technology, and

environmental technology.

New Jersey is indeed an exporting state — the ninth state in terms

of goods sent out of the country. Two-way trade between Canada and

New Jersey amounted to $6.7 billion worth of goods in 1997, and

exports

to Canada amount to about 18 percent of the state’s total exports.

Of this, 27 percent of the exports to Canada or $826 million were

in the category of chemicals and allied products, such as plastics.

Other major categories were agricultural products ($399 including

$61 million of orange juice and concentrates), $342 million of

personal

and household goods (including books), $353 million of transportation

equipment, and $173 million of other equipment and tools, including

$39 million of medical equipment.

New Jersey imports such Canadian products as metals and basic metals,

forest and agricultural products and seafood, equipment and office

machines. "There are about 20 Canadian firms with facilities in

New Jersey, and more than double that number of Canadian subsidiaries

of New Jersey companies," says Savone. "Through relationships

fostered by groups such as the Canadian-American Chamber of Commerce,

those numbers will grow."

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Y2K-versation

Summit Bank is holding a forum on the Y2K problem on

Tuesday, November 9, at 9 a.m. at Brower Student Center of the College

of New Jersey. Participants in "New Jersey Y2K Community

Conversation"

include Wendy Rayner, chief information officer for New Jersey,

William Stone, vice president, Federal Reserve Bank of

Philadelphia,

and representatives of Summit Bank, PSE&G, and Bell Atlantic.

"There has been solid progress in meeting the Year 2000 technology

challenge, but the general public remains uncertain about banks and

other basic services," says Larry Betsinger, executive vice

president of Summit. "We hope to increase public confidence with

our `community conversation’ about the Y2K issue, an event we are

sponsoring as part of the national campaign advanced by the

President’s

Council on Year 2000 Conversion." Call 609-987-3148 for

information.

Top Of Page
Corporate Angels

Stephen V. Sashihara, president of Princeton

Consultants, hosted a preview party for 100 people for "Dreams

of Lumiere," the Eden Dreams fundraiser for January 22. Individual

tickets will be $300. As the primary corporate sponsor of the event,

Sashihara is encouraging those from small and mid-sized companies

to donate sponsorships of from $3,500 to $10,000. Those on the $5,000

level are members of the honorary committee and are entitled to

additional

tickets, invitations to a VIP reception, and particular recognition

in the program booklet.

Top Of Page
Participate Please

The New Jersey Environmentors Project seeks volunteers

to help high school students design a scientific research project

to address an environmental problem. When the seven-month program

is completed, the students present their fieldwork results to an

elementary

school class and at an EnvironMentors Fair. Volunteer mentors work

with matched pairs of Trenton Central and Princeton High students.

Those interested in becoming a mentor with the Princeton-based project

should contact Maureen Quinn at 609-252-1303, or Email:

njenquinn@aol.com.

For information see http://www.members.aol.com/njenvmntor.

No prior mentoring or research experience is needed.


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