Less than 30 percent of Americans under the age of 55 have estate plans, even though most know it is important. Many procrastinate, or believe the process is very straightforward. In fact, this is a gross oversimplification, and can cost your family time and money. Don’t overlook long-term care costs. We all know that some elders require nursing home care. However, may believe "it will never happen to me." You can certainly take good care of yourself and hope for the best, but the … [Read more...] about Three Estate Planning Tips That Can Make a Difference
People sometimes pass around information about estate planning that is incomplete or distorted, and they take action that is based on these misguided notions. In this post, we will look at three of these misconceptions to help you avoid mistakes that may yield negative consequences. #1-You can plan your estate yourself with generic documents that you can get online. If you search for information about estate planning on the internet, you will run across ads that are placed by companies that sell … [Read more...] about Three Misconceptions That Lead to Estate Plan Mistakes
Many attorneys and financial professionals recommend you have a revocable living trust as it facilitates asset transfers outside of probate. If you use a will, it is admitted to probate, which can be a costly and time-consuming legal process. In addition to the time and money factor, there is a loss of privacy because the records are available to the public. When a living trust is used, the assets are distributed outside of probate, so these drawbacks are avoided. This is a major positive, … [Read more...] about Five Living Trust Benefits That May Surprise You
A handful of classic rock artists have captured the public's imagination before they passed away at young ages. Jim Morrison is one of them. As the lead singer of The Doors, he was the voice of many memorable hits that people are still enjoying to this day. The 50th anniversary of his passing was recognized on July 3, 2021, with a great deal of attention. From an estate planning perspective, Morrison did one thing right, but he made some major mistakes. You can learn from them as we … [Read more...] about Anniversary of Jim Morrison’s Death Serves as an Estate Planning Reminder
Financial success carries great benefits, but it can present a challenge as well. The federal estate tax looms large for high net worth individuals because it carries a 40 percent top rate. A certain amount may be transferred tax-free upon your death through a credit or exclusion. Currently, the exclusion is $11.7 million, so it does not impact most Americans today. However, by law, the exclusion will drop to $5 million in 2026, and Congress could make additional changes at any … [Read more...] about How Do You Gain Estate Tax Efficiency?
People sometimes hear little bits of information about aspects of the estate planning process and they make assumptions. They may spread around, and over time myths that are perpetuated over the years become truth. These misconceptions can cause mistakes and yield negative consequences. Today, we will highlight four of them in this post. The administration process is simple when you use a will as your asset transfer vehicle. You may assume that the executor that is named in a will can … [Read more...] about Debunking Four Estate Planning Myths
Senators Sanders and Whitehouse have introduced legislation in the Senate which would significantly alter the Estate Planning landscape. It would dramatically change the tools we use to plan for our clients. Time is of the essence. by Steve Hartnett 0 Comments Every year there are numerous tax proposals. These proposals run the gamut. We start paying attention when there’s a change in power in Washington, D.C., especially when there’s not divided government. Right now, Democrats … [Read more...] about Tax Proposals Could Alter Estate Planning Landscape
There are two different ways to handle the estate planning process. You can take a bare-bones approach and state your final wishes in a simple will and let the chips fall as they may. The other option is a more comprehensive, thoughtful approach that takes other facets of your life into account. If you take the time to cover all of your bases, you can ease the burden on your loved ones during a time when they will be grieving. One of the details that you can address in advance is the matter … [Read more...] about Do You Have Final Arrangement Preferences?
Most adults today have not set up their estate plans. Many fail to take action because they don’t understand why it is important. In this post, we will share five attention-getting reasons why you should put a plan in place if you are currently unprepared. Prevent a Confusing, Tangled Situation If you pass away without any estate planning documents at all, the condition of intestacy would exist. Your family members would have to scramble to try to figure out how to proceed and who would … [Read more...] about Five Reasons to Put an Estate Plan in Place
Different methods that can be used to transfer assets to the people on your inheritance list. A perfectly acceptable way to get a bequest into the hands of one person may be very wrong for another. This becomes clear when providing for a person with a disability. We will look at the details in this post. Government Benefit Eligibility People with disabilities need health insurance, but a significant percentage of them cannot work. This means they can’t get health insurance through their … [Read more...] about Special Needs Planning Demystified