Estate Planning Articles

Who Needs to Shovel that Walkway? Landlord Responsibility for Pathway Maintenance

Saving Yourself from Slip, Trip, and Fall Lawsuits With colder weather approaching, if you are a Massachusetts residential landlord, it pays to review your responsibilities for clearing snow and other weather-related debris from rental properties. Contrary to what you may assume, Massachusetts law does not specifically assign responsibility for shoveling snow out of walkways or driveways. However, in defining “Safe Condition” for rental premises, CMR 410. 452 declares: “The owner shall maintain all means of egress

Read More »

Estate Planning Basics: Comparing Powers of Attorney and Living Wills

No Time Like the Uncertain Present to Prepare for the Certain Future While it is always the time to get your affairs in order, since putting off these important decisions can lead to financial and emotional pain for your survivors, the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic has brought mortality to the forefront of many minds and has brought home the urgency of planning for one’s end-of-life care. In this article, we will review two legal tools available to

Read More »

Don’t forget to fund your trust

Most people who have an estate plan have created a trust. But one thing many people forget is rather important: funding the trust. During the lifetime of the grantor who created the trust, the trustee can use the trust assets for the grantor’s benefit, if the grantor becomes incapacitated. If you want the trustee to do that, you must be sure your trust is funded. To fund the trust during your lifetime, you must change the

Read More »

Borrowing from your retirement due to COVID-19

When you save for retirement, the goal is to keep the money growing until you are of retirement age. But sometimes unexpected financial crises arise, as is the case with many people due to the pandemic. The CARES Act, which was signed into law in March, offers some relief with expanded withdrawals from IRAs and retirement plans and expanded loan options from certain retirement plans. You are eligible for these relief options if you, your spouse

Read More »

Tips for succession planning

The longevity of a small business depends on a well-thought-out succession plan. For a family business, you want to evaluate who else can run the business and whether you have to look beyond family members as the business grows. An experienced attorney can help the key stakeholders create a succession plan or review your existing plan. If you want to choose a successor, here is a basic how-to-guide to help you get started: 1) Think about

Read More »

When to sell your parents’ home: The tax consequences

Let’s say you’ve known for years that you are inheriting your father’s home when he dies. Hopefully, you also know that he has a will that indicates clearly that the house will go to you. Now let’s assume that your father is no longer living in the house and doesn’t need the money from the sale. Perhaps he just moved to assisted living and has long-term care insurance to cover the costs. Or maybe he just

Read More »

5 Key Questions to Answer When Creating Your Will

If you don’t want important decisions to be left up to the state when you’re gone, you need a will. If the idea of creating a will feels like you’re tempting fate, think of it as a road map you’re leaving your family, so they don’t have to stress over making the right decisions on your behalf. First, you need to understand the differences between a living will and a last will and testament, usually referred

Read More »

10 Questions To Help You Create Your Will

A Holistic Approach to Your Affairs For many people, especially those approaching middle- or retirement-age, know they should put together a plan for their estate, but feel overwhelmed by the details and options. They continue to put off estate planning for “another day” until, often, it is too late. Younger people also should consider their affairs, because there is no time like the present and because tomorrow is never guaranteed. In fact, putting together a comprehensive

Read More »

Think twice before transferring your home to adult children

Your home might well be your biggest asset. Many times, parents think about giving their home to their adult children outright while the parents are still alive, or adding their names to the deed. While doing so might avoid probate when you die, it’s also likely to lead to significant gift tax consequences. And if anything happens that could affect your kids’ assets, such as a bankruptcy filing or a lawsuit, your home could suddenly be

Read More »

Where can you live to lower your estate tax?

In retirement, you might move to a different state for a wide range of reasons, such as being close to your kids and grandkids, or for a warmer climate. Another key thing to consider is the state estate tax. The federal estate tax applies to all U.S. taxpayers, whether they live in the U.S. or abroad. With the current federal estate tax annual exclusion set at $11.58 million, there are many taxpayers who wouldn’t owe an

Read More »
Call Now Button
Email us now
close slider