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Family Planning

Friday, December 14, 2018

Six Events Which May Require a Change in Your Estate Plan

Creating an estate plan is not a one-time event. You should review your plan periodically, to ensure it is up to date, and make necessary changes if your personal situation changes. There are a number of life-changing events that require your plan to be revised, including:

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Thursday, November 15, 2018

Why New Parents Need an Estate Plan

Becoming a new parent is a life-changing experience, and caring for a child is an awesome and joyful responsibility. This is also the time to think about your child's future by asking an important question: who will care for your child if you become disabled or die? The best way to put your mind at ease is by having an estate plan.

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Tuesday, July 31, 2018

Beneficiary Designations and a Blended Family: Why You Need to Think Before You Sign


Whether you are in your first marriage or have remarried after a divorce, blended families are a common part of modern society. That being said, it is important to understand that blended families and subsequent marriages create important and unique issues when it comes to estate planning. You may need to account for a prior spouse who is still caring for minor or disabled children, and also possibly make sure your current spouse and any children you had together are also taken care of after you pass away. The good news is that estate planning can take all of these factors into account. This is true whether you are putting together your estate plan for the very first time or if you need to update your current estate plan due to a change in your circumstances.


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Monday, February 12, 2018

Estate Planning For the Newly Married

Now is the perfect time to start working on an estate plan. As newlyweds, you are figuring out how to consolidate two households into one. You've already been working on the new banking and shared responsibility of bills and taxes.

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Wednesday, December 27, 2017

Do you really need a trust?


Although many people equate “estate planning” with having a will, there are many advantages to having a trust rather than a will as the centerpiece of your estate plan. While there are other estate planning tools (such as joint tenancy, transfer on death, beneficiary designations, to name a few), only a trust provides comprehensive management of your property in the event you can’t make financial decisions for yourself (commonly called legal incapacity) or after your death. 

One of the primary advantages of having a trust is that it provides the ability to bypass the publicity, time, and expense of probate. Probate is the legal process by which a court decides the rightful heirs and distribution of assets of a deceased through the administration of the estate. This process can easily cost thousands of dollars and take several months to more than a year to resolve.


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Tuesday, December 12, 2017

What are Letters Testamentary?

An individual who has been named as a personal representative or executor in a will has a number of important duties. These include gathering the deceased person's property and transferring it to the beneficiaries through a court-supervised process known as probate. In order to initiate this proceeding, the executor must first obtain what are referred to as Letters Testamentary. In Wisconsin, they are called Domiciliary Letters. This document gives the executor the legal authority to administer the deceased person's estate.

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Wednesday, November 29, 2017

What is Settlement Planning?


Settlement planning is a unique and expanding area of law that is designed to help individuals preserve benefits that have been received from a personal injury settlement, inheritance or judgment. The practice encompasses an array of legal services such as special needs planning, estate planning and financial planning. The objective is to assist clients with resolving claims and to create a structure to properly manage the funds.

Settlement planning is particularly designed for minors, individuals with disabilities, adults who lack capacity and individuals who are receiving public benefits. Without careful planning, those who receive a large settlement or other proceeds may have difficulty managing these funds.


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Friday, July 7, 2017

Q & A with Attorney John Haslam: Special Needs Planning


What is special needs planning? 

People planning for beneficiaries with a special needs must address the following concerns:

  • How will financial benefits be used for their benefit?

  • Who will control and manage financial assets?

  • How can an estate plan be arranged so that the beneficiary with special needs can benefit from inherited assets for the rest of their life?

  • If the beneficiary is receiving government benefits, how can money be left to them without jeopardizing those benefits?

  • Money may very easily be exhausted in an ill-advised and rapid fashion.

  • Will there be circumstances when the beneficiary can assume control over inherited assets?


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Wednesday, March 29, 2017

3 Reasons Why Every Young Family Needs an Estate Plan

No one expects to die early in life, but unfortunately accidents and other unforeseen circumstances are not uncommon. It’s critical to have a plan in place that will take care of you and your loved ones if you pass away or become disabled.

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Thursday, October 13, 2016

Top 5 Ways to Protect Your Children With a Trust

Many parents believe that their “responsible” children do not need the protection of a trust. After all, if your child is good with money, why do they need their inheritance placed in a trust?

A trust can provide five main protections that won’t be present if you give assets to your children outright: (1) creditor protection, (2) predator protection, (3) divorce protection, (4) self-protection, and (5) estate tax protection. We will address each of these protections in turn.


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Friday, July 29, 2016

How to Calculate Your Estate Tax

 

In order to predict how much your estate will have to pay in taxes, one must first determine the value of the estate. To determine this, many assets might have to be appraised at fair market value. The estate includes all assets including real estate, cash, securities, stocks, bonds, business interests, loans receivable, furnishings, jewelry, and other valuables.

Once your net worth is established, you can subtract liabilities like mortgages, credit cards, other legitimate debts, funeral expenses, medical bills, and the administrative cost to settle your estate including attorney, accounting and appraisal fees, storage and shipping fees, insurances, and court fees. The administrative expenses will likely total roughly 5% of the total estate.


Read more . . .


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With Offices in Madison, WI and Evansville, WI, the attorneys at the Wilson Law Group assist clients with Estate & Business Planning, Probate & Trust Administration, Elder Law and Medicaid Planning throughout Southern Wisconsin including Verona, Middleton, Sun Prairie, Cross Plains, Oregon, Black Earth, Janesville, Jefferson, Fort Atkinson, Baraboo, Reedsburg, Richland Center, Mount Horeb, Monroe, Beaver Dam, Dane County, Rock County, Green County, Iowa County, Richland County, Sauk County, Columbia County, Dodge County and Jefferson County.

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