Is It Time to Update My Estate Plan?

Is It Time to Update My Estate Plan? I am often asked what are the events that should make one update an estate plan. Here are my general guidelines: Marriage or Divorce of you, your children, grandchildren or business or life partners; Contemplation of Marriage, especially second marriages, Registered Domestic Partnerships or Divorce; Birth of … Read more

In Case of Death List

In Case of Death List The following agencies need to be notified of your loved one’s passing. Not all may apply to your situation: Social Security Administration Veteran’s Administration (if the decedent formerly served in the military) Defense Finance and Accounting Service (military service retiree receiving benefits) Office of Personnel Management (if the decedent is … Read more

Revoking the Irrevocable Trust

Revoking the Irrevocable Trust It is more than wishful thinking! When is an irrevocable trust revocable? It seems like something you could never do based on the word ‘irrevocable’ but there are ways to get around this. Borrowing from wine terminology, it is called “decanting a trust” and here is the who, what, where, why … Read more

Elder Abuse

Elder Abuse What is Elder Abuse? It is the neglect, exploitation or “painful or harmful” mistreatment of anyone who is 65 or older (or any disabled dependent adult age 18 to 64). It can involve physical intimidation, violence, psychological abuse, isolation, abandonment, abduction, false imprisonment or a care giver’s neglect. It could also involve unlawful … Read more

For Animal Care

For Animal Care Providing For Your Pets In The Event of Your Death or Hospitalization For many people, a pet is an important and comforting part of life, often filling the void of an empty nest or loss of a family member. The love and companionship given by pets is immeasurable and many people feel … Read more

Estate Tax Exemption “Portability”: Is it right for you?

Estate Tax Exemption “Portability”: Is it right for you? One of the significant changes under the American Taxpayer Relief Act of 2012 (ATRA) enacted in January, was to make estate tax exemption “portability” permanent. What is “portability”? When one spouse dies, portability allows the surviving spouse to use the deceased spouse’s unused exemption amount. This … Read more

Same Sex Estate Planning

Same Sex Estate Planning A marriage bestows certain legal and tax benefits to both husband and wife. However, Federal laws generally do not recognize the same rights and privileges for same-sex couples. Since gay or lesbian couples lack the same certain tax, inheritance and employment benefits that marriage bestows, these benefits must be created through … Read more