In December of 2019, the SECURE Act was enacted by Congress and signed into law. It changed some of the individual retirement account parameters, and one of these changes was very significant from an estate planning perspective. Now, a follow-up bill has been introduced that is called the Securing a Strong Retirement Act or SECURE Act 2.0. We will share the details here, but before we focus on the pending legislation, we will review the changes that have already been actualized. Elimination … [Read more...] about Secure Act 2.0 Is Making Progress
A lot of people question why they should work with an estate planning lawyer to put a plan in place. They assume that it is a relatively simple matter that you can handle without any professional guidance. In fact, there are some very good reasons to engage legal counsel, and we will share five of them in this post. Efficient Estate Administration Far too many people assume that a simple will is the right estate planning document to use, but in many instances, this is not the case at … [Read more...] about Why Do You Need an Estate Plan?
The Heckerling conference, the largest conference for Estate Planning in the country, occurred recently. Many of the thought leaders in Estate Planning and Elder Law got together and discussed recent developments and new strategies. Read on to learn more. … [Read more...] about Estate Planning Conference Discusses “For the 99.5% Act,” SECURE, and More
Why do you have a “Last Will and Testament.” Even Estate Planning attorneys are unlikely to know the etymology of the term. It was the subject of a recent question on “Jeopardy.” Read on to learn more. … [Read more...] about “Last Will and Testament” Origin
The pandemic has been difficult for many of us, including some Estate Planning attorneys. Sometimes it’s difficult to follow all the news. But, there’s little-known pandemic relief for employers struggling from the pandemic. Read on to learn more. … [Read more...] about Pandemic Relief for Employers
The process of estate planning can seem overwhelming to a layperson, and admittedly, there are some intricacies that enter the picture. This being stated, there are essentially four boxes to check when you plan your estate, and we will look at them here. Asset Transfer Vehicle When you plan your estate, you have to facilitate postmortem transfers to your heirs. A simple will is an option, but it will not be the right choice unless the situation is stripped-down and very … [Read more...] about Cover These Four Estate Planning Bases
The federal estate tax looms large for high net worth individuals because it carries a very hefty 40 percent rate. It is imposed on the portion of an estate that exceeds the amount of the exclusion, and in 2021, the federal estate tax exclusion is $11.7 million. You do not have to be concerned about paying the tax on transfers to your spouse, because there is an unlimited marital deduction. This gives you the ability to transfer any amount of property to your spouse tax-free, but there is one … [Read more...] about Can You Give Gifts to Avoid Estate Taxes?
If you have someone in the family that is a poor money manager, you may have serious reservations when you are devising your estate plan. This individual may burn through their inheritance quickly and be left with nowhere to turn in the future, and this can definitely be a cause for concern. Fortunately, they are steps you can take to protect a spendthrift heir, and we will look at a commonly embraced solution in this post. Revocable Living Trust Under these circumstances, you can establish … [Read more...] about How Can You Protect a Spendthrift Heir?
As we approach the end of the year, it’s a good time to think about updating your plan. This includes your entire plan, including Powers of Attorney. Powers of Attorney are part of even the simplest estate plan. A Power of Attorney allows your Agent to act for you. There are Powers of Attorney for financial matters and also those for health care. It’s important to consider whether you need to update either of these powers. Read on to learn more. … [Read more...] about Updating Your Plan: Powers of Attorney
A Health Care Power of Attorney appoints someone to make decisions for you if you’re not able to do so for yourself. An Advance Directive expresses your wishes regarding end-of-life decisions. During the COVID-19 pandemic, it’s important to have them up-to-date. Read on to learn more. … [Read more...] about Staying Current is Especially Important in the Pandemic