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Tuesday, September 01, 2015

Executors Fees: How Much are They and Can the Deceased Make You Agree Not to Take One?
An executor's fee is the amount charged by the person who has been appointed as the executor of the probate estate for handling all of the necessary steps in the probate administration. Therefore, if you have been appointed an executor of someone’s estate, you might be entitled to a fee for your services.  This fee could be based upon a variety of factors and some of those factors may be dependent upon state, or even local, law.

Read more . . .


Friday, August 21, 2015

7 Trust-Based Asset Protection Strategies for You and Your Family

You don’t have to make your family’s assets easy for creditors to reach.  Protecting your hard-earned assets for the benefit of yourself and your family can be accomplished through careful planning. These seven trust-based asset protection strategies can put significant (and often insurmountable) obstacles in the way of a creditor.


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Tuesday, August 04, 2015

Is There Any Way a Disinherited Child Could Receive an Inheritance from an Estate?
If your estate plan and related documents are properly and carefully drafted, it is highly unlikely that the court will disregard your wishes and award the excluded child an inheritance.  As unlikely as it may be, there are certain situations where this child could end up receiving an inheritance depending upon a variety of factors.

Read more . . .


Friday, July 24, 2015

How to Create a Successful, Multigenerational Wealth Transfer Plan
Studies have shown that 70% of family wealth is lost by the end of the second generation and 90% by the end of the third.  Don’t let your loved ones become part of these statistics. You need to understand, and work to overcome, the disconnect that occurs between generations regarding the transfer of wealth.  In this issue you will learn:

Read more . . .


Tuesday, July 07, 2015

Problems with Using a Joint Account as a Vehicle for Inheritance
When deciding who will inherit your assets after you die, it is important to consider that you might outlive the beneficiary you choose.  If you have added someone to your financial accounts to ensure that he or she receives this asset after you die, you might be concerned about what will happen should you outlive this person.

Read more . . .


Tuesday, June 23, 2015

Leaving a Timeshare to a Loved One
Many of us have been lucky enough to acquire timeshares for the purposes of vacationing on our time off.  Some of us would like to leave these assets to our loved ones.  If you have a time share, you might be able to leave it to your heirs in a number of different ways. 

Read more . . .


Friday, June 12, 2015

If You Die Without a Will, Does Your Spouse Inherit Your Entire Estate?
If you are married and you die without a Last Will and Testament, you may mistakenly believe that your spouse will still inherit your entire estate.  Not so fast.  Who will inherit your estate depends on several different factors.
Read more . . .


Monday, May 25, 2015

What's up in Washington?

On April 16 the United States House of Representatives passed, by a vote of 242 to 179 House Resolution 1105 entitled “Death Tax Repeal Act of 2015”. The vote was largely along party lines, and the resolution proposes the repeal of the estate tax and generation-skipping transfer tax, while retaining the gift tax. Under this resolution, gift tax would be imposed at a maximum rate of 35% on lifetime gifts exceeding $5,000,000, adjusted for inflation after the year 2011. The Senate is currently considering similar legislation. The White House has indicated that it would veto this bill as it is projected to add $269 Billion to the deficit over ten years without any reduction in spending.
It is interesting to note that House Resolution 1105 contains no provision for “carry over basis” and retains the stepped up basis rules that exempt capital gains on assets held until death from income taxes. It seems as if there just isn’t a Congressional Session without an attempt to repeal or modify the estate tax and this year appears to be no different. As both the Senate and House Resolutions are considered and perhaps presented to the President, it bears watching.

Even the third branch of government, the Supreme Court, will be dealing with issues that could greatly affect estate planners everywhere. Oral arguments are scheduled in Obergefell vs. Hodges and three related cases on April 28, 2015. The issue is whether due process and equal protection, under the Constitution are available for persons of the same sex wishing to marry. The Constitutional protection would override the rights of states to govern marriages within their borders. This case, arising out of the Sixth Circuit, is  from the only appellate circuit thus far to deny marriage rights to persons of the same sex following the Supreme Court’s decision in Windsor v. U.S., an estate tax refund case. The implications for the marital deduction for gift and estate taxes, as well as joint income tax filings and other tax benefits (including spousal protection under ERISA) will have repercussions for estate planners throughout the country. It appears that all three branches of the federal government are simultaneously involved in issues that will have great import to planning decisions in the future.

As they say on television – “Stay tuned”.


Wednesday, May 20, 2015

How to Minimize Legal Fees after Death

Death is a costly business.  Aside from funeral expenses, legal fees can take a big chunk out of how much is left for your loved ones after you’re gone. 

But it doesn't have to be this way.  Careful planning can minimize the legal fees your loved ones will pay after you die.  Here’s how:


Read more . . .


Friday, May 08, 2015

Happy Mother's Day Weekend

Mother’s Day is a holiday honoring motherhood that is observed in different forms throughout the world. The American incarnation of Mother’s Day was created by Anna Jarvis in 1908 and became an official U.S. holiday in 1914.

Did You Know?
More phone calls are made on Mother’s Day than any other day of the year. These holiday chats with Mom often cause phone traffic to spike by as much as 37 percent.


Tuesday, May 05, 2015

Happy Cinco de Mayo

Cinco de Mayo—or the fifth of May—commemorates the Mexican army’s 1862 victory over France at the Battle of Puebla during the Franco-Mexican War (1861-1867). A relatively minor holiday in Mexico, in the United States Cinco de Mayo has evolved into a celebration of Mexican culture and heritage, particularly in areas with large Mexican-American populations. Cinco de Mayo traditions include parades, mariachi music performances and street festivals in cities and towns across Mexico and the United States.

Many people outside Mexico mistakenly believe that Cinco de Mayo is a celebration of Mexican independence, which was declared more than 50 years before the Battle of Puebla.


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