As our senior population grows older, they face unique and complex challenges. Fear of losing control and doubt concerning the ability to pay for assistance with common daily needs can result in dangerous isolation for our seniors. It can also leave family members scrambling to provide help without any clear idea of the type of help needed, or awareness about resources that can be brought to … [Read more...] about Challenges Facing Aging Family Members
In most cases the language in a Trust simply states that the Trustee shall be entitled to "Reasonable Compensation" without stating a specific dollar or percentage. All of the following factors shall be considered in determining reasonableness of compensation: The degree of difficulty and novelty of the tasks required of the Trustee. The responsibilities and risks involved. The amount … [Read more...] about What is Reasonable Compensation for a Trustee to Settle a Trust Estate?
Only you and your spouse typically know where information about all your banking, bills, accounts, doctors, debts, etc. is located. By listing the details of your life, such as property, personal information and finances on one document, you can greatly assist those who may end up taking care of you in the event of illness, or taking care of your estate in the event of your death. A good … [Read more...] about Advanced Estate Planning Information For Caregivers And Surviving Spouses
Sample Case Study: Client in their mid 80’s with an estate of approximately $9,000,000. Children are three daughters in their early 60’s. Two of the three daughters have received substantial help (+/- $500,000 from the parents over the past 30 years). The third daughter has received little or no help as she has been financially successful and responsible. The two daughters that … [Read more...] about Should You Distribute Your Estate Equally Among Children In Unequal Circumstances?
If you are in a second marriage, did you have children from your first marriage? What happens when your spouse has children that you have grown fond of? How do you treat children from a prior marriage versus the children in a current marriage? The best solution is to create Trust(s) for the benefit of all those you want as beneficiaries. Once you have your Trust(s) established, you should … [Read more...] about Creating a Trust for the Benefit of Children from a Second Marriage
It's already starting to feel like summer in many parts of the country. But the forecast for Washington remains unclear as officials continue to discuss various tax-related issues. No matter what happens in Washington, don't get stuck in a holding pattern yourself. Give some attention to business and personal tax planning this summer. Here are 10 ideas that combine tax planning with … [Read more...] about 10 Simple (and Fun) Ways to Cut Taxes This Summer
Have you ever thought about becoming a landlord? This option may be tempting if your local real estate market is surging and rental rates are strong, especially if you're already planning to relocate or downsize to a smaller home. Ideally, you'll be able to shelter most or all of the rental income with tax deductions and eventually sell the property for a higher price than you originally … [Read more...] about Consider Taxes before Converting Your Home to a Rental Property
As we get older, one in four of us will require some level of caregiving services. This could range from simply running errands and providing occasional transportation to doctors, shopping, to providing extensive around the clock care. Experts estimate that family members provide more than $450 billion in elder care services annually. One question is "should family members be paid for this … [Read more...] about Should Family Members Be Compensated for Caregiving Services
The basic idea of a Qualified Domestic Trust or QDOT (normally built into most revocable living trusts) is to avoid the forced payment of estate taxes on the death of the first spouse with a large estate, where the intended recipient is a surviving spouse who is a non-U.S. citizen. Keep in mind that the following persons still enjoy an exemption from estate taxes on the first $5.54M in assets … [Read more...] about Qualified Domestic Trusts (QDOT)
Is Your Home Properly Titled to Your Living Trust After You Refinance? For most people their most valuable asset is their home. Ensuring that your home and the rest of your estate passes efficiently to your heirs is a fundamental reason people create a Living Trust. Most people recognize they must transfer title to their home to their Trust as soon as the Trust is created. Unfortunately, most … [Read more...] about Refinancing Your Home – The Biggest Threat to Your Living Trust