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  • Gift tax return should be filed when parents give house to child

    Gift tax return should be filed when parents give house to child
    Dear Liz: In 2007, my parents signed over their house deed to my name. Does this trigger the gift tax? They never filled out a gift tax form. Is it too late? Dad has passed on but Mom is still with us. She has Alzheimer's disease, and I have her power of attorney. Are there no taxes due because of the lifetime exclusion?
  • Doing the math on 'Lexus lanes'

    Doing the math on 'Lexus lanes'
    Some people are pretty good at being stuck in traffic. They gab on the phone, listen to music, chalk up the inconvenience as inevitable. Not I. Generally speaking, I sweat, curse and think miserable thoughts. And I'm on the road a lot, which has...

    Ron Unz, a mo' money man on the minimum wage

    Ron Unz, a mo' money man on the minimum wage
    Ron Unz knows his way around the California ballot. He ran for governor against Pete Wilson in the GOP primary 20 years ago. He lost big, but four years later he won with his Proposition 227, which altered California schools by effectively ending...

    Keep credit cards active without slipping into debt

    Dear Liz: Recently I've paid off almost $20,000 in credit card debt and am determined not to go down that path again. Because I haven't used these cards in a while, though, I'm starting to get notifications from the credit card companies that they're...

    Jay Famiglietti's mission: to rescue us from our bad water habits

     Jay Famiglietti's mission: to rescue us from our bad water habits
    If there are stars among the state's water experts, Jay Famiglietti is one, with titles too long for a marquee: a UC Irvine professor of earth system science and head of the UC Center for Hydrologic Modeling, and a new member of the Santa Ana Regional...