A living trust, set up during your lifetime, is designed to allow for easy transfer of your assets. A trustee holds legal possession of the assets and property in your trust and has a fiduciary duty to manage the trust prudently for the trust's beneficiaries. Most significantly, it provides for an easy mechanism to facilitate the management of your asset if you become incapacitated, to designate what you want to occur upon your passing, and tp avoid the costs and delays of a probate … [Read more...] about Living Trusts: What Are They?
If the pandemic proved anything, it's that life tends to get in the way of our plans — including retirement plans. Over the course of the pandemic, many people were forced to retire early, others decided they wanted to retire and still others opted to change their planned retirement date. The number of people affected is high; a recent survey found that more than 80% of Americans say their retirement plans were impacted by the pandemic. While you may not be able to control when you … [Read more...] about 7 Steps To Prepare for Retirement
Are you in an age-gap relationship? Five percent of first marriages and 20% of second marriages need a special focus on making both of your needs work. Financial matters for large age-gap retirement planning include retirement funding, Social Security planning, and health care costs. Retirement Planning Imagine a scenario in which the older spouse is ready to retire, while the younger spouse is hitting her/his stride and doesn't want to slow down. How should … [Read more...] about Estate Planning With Big Age Gaps
Going through a divorce can be a very rough time in life. Battling over income, assets and child custody can be quite exhausting. All of these distractions may cause you to miss many important tasks you must undertake. And very often the family law attorney who handles your divorce may not follow through to give you the vital information we discuss here. Your Will California law provides that any bequests to a former spouse under a Will is automatically revoked. While this is … [Read more...] about Getting a Divorce? Time to Update Your Estate Plan
A joint tenancy is a legal term that applies to one of many forms of co-ownership of an asset that is held by two or more people. Parties named in a joint tenancy own the property equally. If one joint tenant passes away, the property is immediately passed on to the other living joint tenants without going through probate. Many types of assets may be held in joint tenancy, including real estate, vehicles, personal bank accounts, savings accounts, and brokerage and investment … [Read more...] about Joint Tenancy: Good Idea or Bad Idea?
When you get together this weekend with your dad—either in person or virtually—enjoy reminiscing about the good times and adventures you had together. Also remember to take a moment to think about your dad’s future. Now is a great time to check that his estate planning documents are in order and up to date. Sure, it's not the most sentimental gesture. But taking a moment to check the basics can be of great benefit down the road. It’s the least you can do for someone who has given so much for … [Read more...] about Enjoy Your Dad This Father’s Day and Rest Assured
The planet that we inhabit seems to grow more chaotic with the passing of time. Our reality is a dangerous one, with global pandemics like the coronavirus outbreak recording exponential death rates, and tragic domestic and international terrorist attacks happening on an all to frequent basis. The only certainty in life is that some day our lives will end. We like to avoid dwelling on such unpleasant thoughts, but that does not make it any less true. Another uncomfortable truth is that we … [Read more...] about Planning for the Unexpected in Chaotic Times
The coronavirus outbreak has resulted in thousands of lives lost, halted the global economy, and plunged markets into recession levels. There is not an abundance of good news right now, but there are some silver linings if you are wise in your estate planning. Certain opportunities arise under circumstances when investments lose a significant value over a relatively short period of time. Here we will discuss why now is a good time to make gifts in the form of stock market assets. In addition, … [Read more...] about Does COVID-19 Have a Silver Lining for Estate Plans?
Over the last several decades, however, national borders have all but disappeared, leading to a dramatic increase in cross-border marriages in the United States. In fact, the United States Census Bureau reports that one in five marriages in the U.S. today includes a spouse born outside the U.S. Of those marriages, about 60 percent of the foreign-born spouses have become naturalized citizens, leaving the remaining 40 percent as non-citizens. If you are married to a non-citizen, estate planning … [Read more...] about Can My Non-Citizen Spouse Inherit from My Estate?
Planning for Blended Families Many of our clients are blended, with children of the husband, children of the wife and/or children from both spouses. Estate planning for blended families can require special planning. You may consider your step children to be your own. But, if you haven’t adopted them, they have no inheritance rights. Below is a link to an excellent article from the American Academy of Estate Planning Attorneys about estate planning involving step children. Planning for … [Read more...] about Planning for Step-Children