If you have yet to create an estate plan, you have surely had to listen to well-meaning friends and family members urge you to get started on a plan. They may not, however, have explained to you some of the reasons why having an estate plan in place is so vital to you and your loved ones. To remedy that let's look at three reasons why you don’t want to die intestate. What Does It Mean to Die “Intestate?” First and foremost, you need to understand some of the legal jargon related to … [Read more...] about Why You Don’t Want to Die Intestate
Being a grandparent means you get all the fun of being a parent without all the worry and responsibility of being a parent. As a grandparent, you may want to include your grandkids in your estate plan. To make the most out of those gifts, here are some tips for including your grandchildren in your estate plan. Do not make promises. As a grandparent, you may get carried away and want to make promises for future gifts. For example, you might find yourself promising to cover college … [Read more...] about How to Include Your Grandchildren in Your Estate Plan
If you are the parent of a child with special needs, you understand the joy these children bring to a family as well as to everyone with whom they interact. You are also likely familiar with the worry and fear that comes with thoughts of your child’s future. Fortunately, many children with special needs now live very independent lives; however, as a parent you may still wish to ensure that your child has your financial support as an adult, even after you are no longer here to provide it in … [Read more...] about Why Is Special Needs Planning Necessary?
Despite understanding the importance of having an estate plan in place, over half of all Americans do not have one. Moreover, many of those who do have a plan fail to update and/or expand their plan as needed. The reality is that estate planning can be intimidating and confusing. The best way to ensure that you have an estate plan in place that achieves all your goals and meets all your needs is to work with an experienced estate planning attorney. To help you get started, here are some … [Read more...] about Questions to Ask Your Estate Planning Attorney
Although a Last Will and Testament is likely the cornerstone of your estate plan, you will also probably incorporate additional estate planning tools and strategies into that plan to ensure that all your goals are reached. Many people, for example, include a trust in their estate plan. The best way to ensure that you do not make any mistakes with a trust you create is to work closely with an experienced and qualified estate planning attorney. Let's look at five common mistakes people make when … [Read more...] about 5 Common Trust Mistakes
Trusts have evolved to the point where it is common to find at least one trust in the average estate plan. If you are considering the addition of a trust in your plan, or you are the beneficiary of a trust established by someone else, you may find yourself wondering how a trust terminates. Let's review how a trust can be terminated and whether a beneficiary can terminate a trust. Trust Fundamentals One reason trusts are so popular is that trusts are extremely flexible, meaning a trust can … [Read more...] about Can a Beneficiary Terminate a Trust?
You likely have a loved one that is elderly and that may be particularly vulnerable to elder abuse and neglect. If so, there are things you can do to protect your loved one from becoming a victim of elder abuse. Learning everything you can about elder abuse and neglect with particular emphasis on learning to recognize the signs of elder abuse and neglect is a good place to start. To help you do that, here's some important information along with a list of signs to look for that may indicate a … [Read more...] about Spotting the Signs of Elder Abuse
The Senate is currently primarily controlled by Democrats. Could this impact your Estate Planning? It's possible. My friend and colleague Steve Hartnett, an estate planning expert, has written an informative blog on the subject. Read on to learn more. … [Read more...] about Biden Administration Could Reduce Estate Tax Exclusion
Trustee distribution standards could be very broad. “Health, education, maintenance, and support” is such a standard, which has its origin in tax regulations. My friend and colleague Steve Hartnett, an estate planning expert, has written an informative blog on the subject. Read on to learn more. … [Read more...] about Trust Distribution Standards May Be Very Broad
A revocable trust is treated the same as the individual for most purposes. But for some narrow purposes it can be treated differently. My friend and colleague Steve Hartnett, an estate planning expert, has written an informative blog on the subject. Read on to learn more. … [Read more...] about Revocable Trusts Are Not Always Treated the Same as an Individual