In an ideal world, all of our children or other beneficiaries would be fully grown, responsible, and disability-free upon our deaths. However, we don’t live in a perfect world and unforeseen circumstances often exist. Whether your beneficiaries are minors, are receiving assistance from the government based on a disability, or are otherwise not in the best position to manage an inheritance, there are plenty of great solutions available through proper estate planning. If your beneficiary is a … [Read more...] about Planning Considerations for Real Families
Over the last century, the average life expectancy of an American has almost doubled. While living longer is certainly something we can all be thankful for, we can also expect to have to live with the effects of the natural aging process for much longer than our ancestors did as well. Consequently, we all stand a much better chance of needing long-term care (LTC) at some point before the end of our lives. If you (or a spouse) do end up in LTC, how will you pay for the high cost of that care? … [Read more...] about Do I Need Long-Term Care Insurance?
One of the most pervasive and dangerous myths about estate planning is the belief that it does not become necessary until you marry and/or become a parent. This simply is not true. Estate Planning Is About More Than Your Death One reason that so many people think an estate plan isn’t necessary for a single adult is the also mistaken belief that estate planning is all about death. While it is true that estate planning helps to ensure that your estate assets are distributed according to … [Read more...] about Estate Planning for Singles
Estate Planning attorneys balance competing interests when creating estate plans. Uncertainty about the future concerning taxes and each beneficiary’s situation requires flexibility in an Estate Plan. Powers of appointment offer Estate Planning attorneys a way to add flexibility to a plan without complication. When creating powers of appointment, it’s important to consider not only the reason for including the power but also the way it needs to be exercised. My friend and colleague, Tereina … [Read more...] about The Power in Powers of Appointment
Many Estate Planning attorneys shy away from business succession planning, but if you approach it like you do any other asset, it’s not so scary! First, it’s important to understand that entities involve not just the business relationship, but family relationships as well. Often, businesses start with one or maybe two members of a senior generation who have the funds, desire, and connections to create the business. It’s not always clear, though, what will happen when that senior generation … [Read more...] about Business Succession Planning May Be Easier than You Think
IRAs have become ubiquitous components of estate plans. The SECURE Act of 2019 altered the landscape for IRAs significantly by eliminating the stretch benefit for most designated beneficiaries and forcing all designated beneficiaries other than Eligible Designated Beneficiaries to use the 10-year rule for distributions. The 10-year rule was thought to operate much like the 5-year rule that existed before the passage of the SECURE Act. Recently issued proposed Treasury Regulations dispute that … [Read more...] about Just When You Thought You Understood the 10-Year Rule, Think Again
Estate Planning practitioners field questions regarding disinheriting beneficiaries regularly. The second question often relates to what happens when that beneficiary or any other tries to have the estate plan or portions thereof overturned. An “in terrorem” or “no contest” clause usually acts as a deterrent to such beneficiaries by completing divesting them of their inheritance should they choose to initiate a lawsuit. My friend and colleague, Tereina Stidd, an estate planning expert, has … [Read more...] about What an In Terrerem Clause Can Do for You
Estate planning attorneys need to understand and explain taxation of trusts in order to properly advise clients. Individual clients need to understand the implications of the plan their attorney suggests in order to properly file their own taxes. Determining whether a trust qualifies as a grantor trust or a nongrantor trust is the first step in determining tax liability for a particular year.My friend and colleague, Tereina Stidd, an estate planning expert, has written on this issue. Read on to … [Read more...] about Let’s Talk about Trusts…and Taxation
Life insurance has long been part of Estate Plans, whether used to ensure liquidity for the estate on the death of the insured, or simply as income replacement on the death of the insured. Understanding the impact of life insurance on an estate plan has become critically important. A recent tax court case resulted in a big win for the taxpayer in a complex set of facts which could impact how you incorporate life insurance for your Estate Planning clients. My friend and colleague, Tereina Stidd, … [Read more...] about What Estate of Marion Levine Means for Life Insurance
Accepting the reality that you (or a loved one) need the type of care that can only be found in a long-term care facility is difficult enough. Facing that reality along with the realization that you cannot afford the care can be devastating. This is particularly true if you also failed to plan ahead to ensure that you would qualify for Medicaid if you need help covering the cost of LTC. Why Is Qualifying for Medi-Cal So Important? Like most seniors, you will probably rely on Medicare to … [Read more...] about Is It Too Late for Medi-Cal Planning?