A lot of people who do not have estate plans in place say that they know they should take action, but they don’t know where to start. If you answer the questions we will ask in this post, an estate planning outline will start to take shape.Do you have concerns about the money management capabilities of your heirs?Asset distributions through the terms of a simple will would be provided in direct lump sums, and there would be no safeguards going forward. The inheritors would be in possession … [Read more...] about Answer These Questions to Shape Your Estate Plan
Let's be honest, some of our kids just aren't ready to handle large sums of money (like their inheritances)…Under these circumstances, you might consider making these particular family members the beneficiaries of an incentive trust.Useful GuidanceTo implement an incentive trust, you'd fund the trust and name a trustee to act as the administrator. Any competent adult who is willing to assume the role can technically act as a trustee from a legal perspective. However, you want to engage a … [Read more...] about Incentives Can Be Part of Your Estate Plan
In a general sense, life insurance can enhance your estate plan, and it can satisfy a couple of specific objectives. We will provide an overview here, but first, we will explain the two most commonly used forms of life insurance.1. Whole LifeWhole life insurance is coverage that will pay a death benefit, and it accumulates a cash value. There is a guaranteed rate of return, so it serves as an investment instrument.This is permanent life insurance that will remain in place unless you … [Read more...] about Is Life Insurance Part of Your Estate Plan?
They say that the only constant is change, and this reality can affect your estate planning efforts. Your original actions will reflect your mindset and your family dynamic at that time, but as life goes on, circumstances can change in many different ways.With this in mind, we will look at the matter of trust revocation in this post.Revocable Living TrustsThe most commonly used trust is the revocable living trust, and the name is self-explanatory to a large extent. This type of trust … [Read more...] about Can You Change Your Mind and Dissolve Your Trust?
The most important decision you will make when you are getting your affairs in order is which legal device will serve as the centerpiece. Many people automatically assume that you should use a will because they have misconceptions about trusts.For example, the idea that trusts are not useful unless you are a millionaire... This is patently false, because there are different types of trusts that satisfy very different objectives.Aside from a simple will, the most commonly used estate … [Read more...] about Living Trust vs. Simple Will: Which One Is Right for You?
Surveys that are conducted consistently find that most people do not have estate plans in place, but curiously, the majority of these people think that estate planning is important. Many of these folks drag their feet because they are not very anxious to address what they perceive as a very complicated matter.In fairness, there are some relatively complex legal structures that are sometimes used in the field of estate planning. But our attorneys have refined their knowledge of every strategy … [Read more...] about Don’t Overcomplicate the Estate Planning Process
One of the most dangerous misconceptions about getting your affairs in order is the idea that trusts are only useful for very wealthy individuals. This false concept is based on a half-truth.Indeed, high net worth individuals use rather complicated irrevocable trusts to gain estate tax efficiency. At the same time, the revocable living trust that can be ideal for a wide range of people who are not among the financial elite.Let’s look at some of the major benefits that living trusts … [Read more...] about You Don’t Have to Be Rich to Use a Living Trust
When people pass away when they are relatively young, it serves as a reminder about the fragility of life. You never know what the future holds, and a completely unexpected event can change everything in the blink of an eye.Tony Hsieh was a visionary entrepreneur that passed away on November 27th in Connecticut from complications of smoke inhalation and burns. He was a resident of Las Vegas, but he was visiting a friend at the time.His rise to entrepreneurial success was meteoric. After … [Read more...] about Former Zappos CEO Tony Hsieh Died Without a Will
The acronym HIPAA stands for the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act of 1996. In this post, we will explain why this piece of legislation is something to take into consideration when you are planning your estate.Advance Directives for Health CareEveryone is well aware of the fact that you have to facilitate postmortem asset transfers when you put your estate plan in place. A lot of people think this is the long and short of it, but a proper estate plan will also address … [Read more...] about What Is a HIPAA Release?
A simple last will is considered by many to be the estate planning tool of choice for people who are not very wealthy. In fact, this is not necessarily the case.You have limitations when you use a will. Lump sum distributions would be distributed to the heirs, and this can be a source of concern if you have people in the family who are not great money managers. Plus, the inheritances would be fair game if anyone on your inheritance list was to be the subject of a legal judgment.The … [Read more...] about Wills vs. Trusts: Understand the Distinctions