Preserve Your Legacy

Estate Planning | Elder Law | Special Needs Planning

Blog Posts in November, 2011

  • HOW LIFE INSURANCE CAN BECOME A PROBATE ASSET

    If you’re not careful, life insurance (and other beneficiary designation assets) can become a probate asset. And, that’s not good. Beneficiary designation assets are contracts wherein you have the opportunity to name an individual(s) or trust(s) to receive your assets when you die. Beneficiary designations assets include life insurance, retirement accounts, and annuities. Some bank accounts have ...
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  • IF I HAVE A LIVING WILL, WILL MY LIFE INSURANCE STILL PAY?

    You may be worried that if you have and use a living will that your life insurance won’t pay; no worries. Honoring a living will does NOT affect life insurance payouts in any way, but it’s a good question to ask. Here are the answers to several other common living will related questions. What is a Living Will? A living will is an advanced medical directive, meaning that you make a medical decision ...
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  • WHY YOU CAN'T COUNT ON PORTABILITY OF THE FEDERAL ESTATE TAX EXEMPTION

    The term “portability” is an odd word to associate with the federal estate tax. However, the use of the term is in tax law is similar to our everyday usage; it means that you can move something from one place to another. In the federal estate tax law context, “portability” refers to the ability of the second spouse to die to use the deceased spouse’s unused exemption amount. The deceased spouse’s ...
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  • HOW LONG DOES IT TAKE TO SET UP A REVOCABLE LIVING TRUST?

    On average, it takes about 2 to 4 weeks to get the revocable living trust in place; then, it takes another few weeks to 6 months to get the trust fully funded. This is a relaxed pace; if there is an emergency, such as a terminally ill client, the entire process can be sped up. You and your family are protected the moment that you sign your living trust document. It is effective immediately. ...
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  • WHAT ARE THE ADVANTAGES AND DISADVANTAGES OF SETTING UP A REVOCABLE LIVING TRUST?

    Revocable living trusts are widely used and are now part on the everyday vernacular; however, if you don’t fully understand the advantages and disadvantages of setting up a revocable living trust, you are not alone. In a nutshell, living trust advantages include: Control: Using a trust permits you to stay in control during any period of disability and even after your death. Otherwise, without a ...
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  • DOES MY REVOCABLE LIVING TRUST REPLACE MY WILL?

    Yes, but no. When you have a fully funded revocable living trust , your final asset distribution is in your trust; and, technically, if you have all of your assets funded and no minor children, you don’t need a will. In this case, your trust is called a “will substitute.” However, it is prudent to execute a pour-over-will, which is used to distribute any assets intentionally or inadvertently left ...
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  • I JUST GOT MARRIED: HOW DOES THIS CHANGE MY ESTATE PLAN?

    As you likely have experienced, getting married brings lots of changes to your estate plan , so updates are needed. As life changes, your estate plan must also change to reflect your current personal and financial situation as well as current law. As a benefit of updating, you also will benefit from newly established planning techniques as well. If you’ve recently gotten married or are preparing ...
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  • HAPPY VETERANS DAY!

    Thank you to all the Veterans who have served and continue to serve our country, as well as to the families of Veterans! Through your sacrifices, you have given the rest of us peace and freedom.
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  • PROTECT YOUR CHILDREN'S INHERITANCES FROM DIVORCING SPOUSES, CREDITORS AND PREDATORS

    The heartbreak and financial crisis of divorce strikes 50% of all first marriages and 60% of all second marriages. It’s normal to be concerned about protecting your children’s inheritances from divorcing spouses. As a bonus, you can protect their inheritances from creditors and predators, as well as divorcing spouses. The key to protecting your children’s inheritance is to pass the inheritance in ...
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  • ESTATE PLANNING FOR PARENTS OF YOUNG CHILDREN

    If you have young children (i.e. children under the age of 18), you need to carefully plan your estate to protect and provide for your children. You’ll need the basic estate planning documents to protect yourself as well, with additional documents and consideration for your children. In your will, you name guardians to raise your children if you die. Name back-up guardians as well in case your ...
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  • HOW TO MAKE CHANGES TO YOUR WILL

    As long as you have testamentary capacity (i.e. you’re mentally competent), you can make changes to your will . You can change it a little, change it a lot, or completely revoke it, any time you want. However, it is imperative that you work with a qualified estate planning attorney so that your changes are legally valid and well understood by your executor, the courts, and your beneficiaries. In ...
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  • I HAVE A TRUST; HOW SHOULD I OWN MY PROPERTY?

    You should own your property in accordance with your needs, goals, and up-to-date estate plan, designed by a qualified estate planning attorney. Proper asset ownership is a key to a successful estate plan ; and, most people don’t own their assets properly. If you have a revocable living trust , fund your assets into the trust. If you do trust-based planning, your estate planning attorney will tell ...
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  • ANSWERS TO 6 IMPORTANT MEDICAL ESTATE PLANNING QUESTIONS (PART TWO OF TWO)

    A benefit of estate planning is that you get your questions answered about all kinds of estate planning issues. For example, you find out how to prevent problems and how to create positive solutions, regarding medical planning. Here, we’re answering the 6 important medical estate planning questions we receive the most frequently. We’re including two parts to this article because there are so many ...
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  • ANSWERS TO 6 IMPORTANT MEDICAL ESTATE PLANNING QUESTIONS (PART ONE OF TWO)

    A benefit of estate planning is that you get your questions answered about all kinds of estate planning issues. For example, you find out how to prevent problems and how to create positive solutions, regarding medical planning. Here, we’re answering the 6 important medical estate planning questions we receive the most frequently. We’re including two parts to this article because there are so many ...
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