Estate Planning Articles

How To Protect Your Child’s Inheritance From Their Spouse

One concern we hear in the estate planning process is how to protect an adult child’s inheritance from their spouse. Sometimes this stems from a place of animosity or concern over a child’s problem partner. Some people are concerned about divorce-proofing the assets they’ll leave behind for their kids. Still others simply believe that inheritances are best kept in the “family.” Naming your child alone as inheritor. The most basic option you have is to leave

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Making It Easier For Loved Ones To Settle Your Estate

For many people, estate planning is about more than transferring assets after you’re gone. It can be about making life easier on your survivors and smoothing the way for your loved ones at what is sure to be a difficult time. If that’s one of the “gifts” you’d like to leave behind, consider taking the following steps. Work with an attorney: Consult an attorney who will help you prepare a correctly executed will and/or living trust.

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Using Intrafamily Loans In Your Estate Plan

Interest rates are still at historic lows, despite an expected Federal Reserve rate hike. At times like these, families have a unique opportunity to transfer wealth via an intrafamily loan. An intrafamily loan is a way for family members to loan money to each other at a special rate. They might be used to help a relative buy a house or finance a startup, for example. But for some families, they’re a tool to transfer assets

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The Afterlife of Litigation: What You Need to Know About Inheriting a Lawsuit

What to Do When Probate Meets Civil Litigation  Civil litigation and the probate process: both can potentially drag out for months, if not years; both cost those involved dearly in both financial and emotional terms; both can be made less likely, or less painful, by careful planning and consultation with skilled legal representation. Yet, even the best-laid plans can go awry; sometimes probate and litigation meet head-on. There are times in which one’s inheritance might include

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Required Minimum Distribution (RMD)? What are the new rules for RMDs? How do you calculate RMDs?

Planning Your Estate Around IRAs: What You Need to Know About Required Minimum Distributions With the decline of employer-funded pensions, and the steady decrease of Social Security checks’ purchasing power compared against inflation, an individual retirement account (IRA) has proven to be an important part of millions of Americans’ retirement savings. However, an IRA is also an important factor to consider when planning your estate. How Are IRAs Inherited? IRAs can be inherited, like most financial

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When To Use A Special Needs Trust

Special-Needs Trusts: An Overview of a Useful Estate-Planning Tool In planning one’s estate, one seeks to make one’s passing easier, financially, logistically, and emotionally, for loved ones. In planning for the future, you likely have given special consideration to loved ones who would not be able to provide for themselves if you were gone, such as minor children. While children eventually grow up, some conditions and disabilities that prevent a person from working or living independently

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SEC expands accredited investor definition

In order to participate directly in private equity markets, individuals must meet the Security Exchange Commission’s definition of an “accredited investor.” Now, new rules have expanded that definition, opening a few more opportunities for investment in private equity and hedge funds. Previously, requirements were based largely on financial status. An individual needed an annual income of at least $200,000 (or $300,000 combined with a spouse) and a net worth of at least $1 million, not including

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Moving? Remember to unpack that estate plan

There’s a lot to think about when you move. In all the hustle and work of a relocation, certain things can get forgotten. Once you have the utilities on and the boxes unpacked, it’s time to have your estate planning documents reviewed by an attorney in your new home state. Here’s a list of updates that might be needed:   Estate taxes: Currently, 12 states and the District of Columbia have state-specific inheritance or estate taxes.

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Don’t shut me down: Planning for digital assets

In a world gone increasingly remote, managing your digital assets has become an even more important part of estate planning. From email accounts to digital photos and cloud-based storage, almost everyone owns some kind of digital asset. Terms-of-service agreements and privacy policies govern these accounts and generally expire when you die. That means surviving family members may not be able to access your email, photos, social media accounts, etc. However, emerging laws are providing a legal

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Demands for wills surged during pandemic

The COVID-19 pandemic triggered a rise in estate planning, and yet too many Americans still aren’t planning ahead. Last spring, news reports were rife with stories of advisors experiencing a surge in demand for wills and estate planning. Power of attorney and health care directives were also a focus, as people made decisions about who could access their medical and financial records and who could make decisions on their behalf. The Q4 Wells Fargo/Gallup Investor and

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