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Michael E. Lehr
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Claiming that ABC and Disney used the songs, music and video clips improperly in its made for television documentary, the estate of pop’s legendary Jackson has sued for copyright infringement. Given the enormous legal muscle brought to bear when its own famous characters are used without permission (or royalties), it... Continue reading
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To really serve its purpose, an estate plan must have the legal documents that will protect you and your heirs, if you should become incapacitated. It’s not a pleasant thought, but it does happen. It’s true that an estate plan starts with a properly prepared will, and often includes a... Continue reading
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America is aging, and by 2050, there will be nearly 88 million seniors over age 65. With this huge demographic shift, adult children will find themselves with a new role. It is not unusual in many families that as parents age, their children take on the role of caregivers. However,... Continue reading
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Yes, you can work while collecting Social Security, but you have to be very careful. Earn too much and you’ll be working for nothing! If your retirement plan includes working, even if only part time, make sure to know your income limits. At a certain point, your earnings will either... Continue reading
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You wouldn’t leave your checkbook at a coffee shop for anyone to see. However, your digital assets are just as vulnerable as any other property—maybe more so! We all have an online digital life, some of us way more than others. Almost 25% of all Americans told surveyors from the... Continue reading
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After years of practicing estate planning law, attorneys are all too familiar with some of these mistakes, and can help you avoid them, if you are smart enough to get help from a professional. Some people like to think they know everything, and that often applies to estate planning. The... Continue reading
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States that have opted to require Medicaid recipients to work, will put some seniors at risk of losing healthcare coverage. A recent article from US News & World Report, “How Medicaid Work Requirements Could Hurt Older Americans,” explains how the new requirements for Medicaid recipients to work or meet “community... Continue reading
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A second (or third) marriage comes with certain legal and financial issues that are best dealt with before you walk down the aisle. A new marriage feels like a fresh start and a chance to move forward in life. However, before your wedding celebration, consider these steps recommended in Nasdaq’s... Continue reading
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Major life events are reasons to update your estate plan, whether they are celebrations or sad events. These are the top four reasons to update your estate plan: birth, death, marriage and divorce. However, there are other reasons, including bankruptcy or receiving a surprise windfall. The FDL Reporter recently published... Continue reading
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This is question often goes unasked, but the harsh truth is, not everyone wants to leave their spouse with all of their worldly goods. There is no legal requirement that spouses must leave all of their assets to each other when they die, as discussed in a recent article from... Continue reading
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You can update your will twenty times, but if you don’t change the beneficiary designations, the unwanted consequences could be awful for your loved ones. It happens more than you’d think: a husband thinks he has made all the necessary provisions for his second wife. Then he dies, and during... Continue reading
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There are several investments that are not permitted to be held within these types of accounts. For the average investor, one of the appeals of self-directed, traditional and Roth IRAs is that they are not limited to the typical investments offered as part of employee-sponsored retirement plans. In an IRA,... Continue reading
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Most people know that their ability contribute to an HSA becomes limited as they approach 65, but there are some opportunities presented as well. There are some good reasons to squeeze every dollar you can into your HSA, as you approach retirement age. Start with the fact that healthcare costs... Continue reading
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Worrying about Social Security doesn’t help anyone but being aware of the challenges facing the system and preparing for change is always the best course. Not surprisingly, pre-retirement adults age 50-64 are the largest group of American adults worried about the Social Security system: 51% expressed worry to pollsters. It’s... Continue reading
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You wouldn’t fly a plane without a flight plan. The same is true for a financial plan. You need to know where you want to go, and how you are going to get there. A failure to plan is a big reason why many people’s financial goals are missed, year... Continue reading
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Does having to pay an inheritance tax discourage someone who might have built an empire, from doing so? Or does an estate tax make a business owner retire earlier? Forbes recently provided an analysis of a research paper examining the impact of estate, wealth transfer taxes and other inheritance taxes... Continue reading
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If undue influence can be proven, it is established that a will can be set aside. A 2013 probate judgment ordering Frank and Angelina Picciolo to return all funds that Mrs. Picciolo received was appealed. The funds were from an annuity transfer that her husband completed, while acting as attorney-in-fact... Continue reading
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With a growing population of elderly, the lack of regulations and oversight has led to a disastrous situation for adults who lose civil liberties via guardianship proceedings. A review by the Reading Eagle of court documents in three Pennsylvania counties show that when it is necessary for Adult Protective Services... Continue reading
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An administrative law judge said that Blanche Berenzweig should return the $1 million she collected from a deceased client’s estate. The heirs of a reclusive man have objected to the will, claiming that she pressured their uncle. This fall, a trial will be held to determine who LeRoy Ern’s real... Continue reading
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Remember to update your estate plan, especially if your life includes events like new kids, a new marriage or the death of a loved one. If you love your family, you’ll keep them in mind when considering whether to make an appointment to update your estate, as you go through... Continue reading
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Americans continue to be fascinated by the death of Natalie Wood, as her death remains an unsolved mystery. It’s been a long time since actress Natalie Wood drowned and Hollywood buzzed with accusations. Recently, two new survivors have spoken to the news media, and the spotlight is shining, once again,... Continue reading
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Having many wives, or having much younger wives isn’t so unusual for rockers. But completely cutting your children out of your will; that’s just not the French way. Leaving his entire fortune and, if that wasn’t bad enough, all of his artistic rights, to his fourth wife, Laeticia, has led... Continue reading
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You can’t avoid disasters, but you can prepare for them. For retirements, the top two threats are the cost of long-term care and bear markets. Recent headlines have brought a steady stream of calamity, on a major scale: earthquakes, hurricanes, floods, ice storms, mud slides and forest fires. Kiplinger’s recent... Continue reading
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It’s not yet confirmed, but the case of a woman who is claiming that her former boss, a deceased county pathologist, did not pay state income or estate taxes, might be the state’s first unsealed qui tam estate tax case. According to a suit filed in New York, a Westchester... Continue reading
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Blended families may be able to maintain a precarious balance when both parents are living, but often when one—usually the father—passes, the interests of the stepchildren and widow don’t mix. In many different cases—will contests, trust contests, probate objections, deed revocations or joint-tenancy battles—stepmothers and stepchildren are at odds. Long-simmering... Continue reading