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Michael E. Lehr
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People who receive a diagnosis of Alzheimer’s disease, an incurable type of dementia, are overwhelmed by hopelessness. But two authors want to change that. The authors of a new book, “Better Living With Dementia,” say it’s time to break the “cycle of despair” that accompanies an Alzheimer’s diagnosis. The Washington... Continue reading
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When was the last time you even remembered which of your accounts have beneficiary designations? If you don’t remember, it’s time to check them. Life insurance, IRAs, bank accounts and investment portfolios all have beneficiary designations. Investopedia says that outdated beneficiary designations can cause problems in its article, “The Importance... Continue reading
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The statistics aren’t encouraging. About three quarters of Americans are likely to need long-term care, but very few are ready for the costs. A recent article from Think Advisor paints a dismal picture of Americans who are just not preparing themselves for the inevitable facts of aging. The article, “Now... Continue reading
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Estate planning often serves as a reflection of a family’s experiences. In this instance, estate planning is used to protect the family and individuals with substance abuse problems. Estate planning attorneys hear all kinds of stories about bizarre family dynamics and difficult relatives. However, the national opioid epidemic is relatively... Continue reading
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Maybe people who went into the music in the past, led with their hearts and souls, like Aretha, but the difference in income is astronomical. As singers and actors from prior generations die and we learn about their business lives, there’s a huge disparity between their earnings and that of... Continue reading
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529 plans are a great way to help parents with taxes and college costs. Grandparents, aunts and uncles and anyone who wants to pitch in, can also benefit. Starting to put aside money in a 529 college plan when children are very young, is a wonderful way to push yourself... Continue reading
As we age, our medical costs often increase. There’s a good chance you’ll have to eventually pay for long-term care for yourself or a loved one, increasing out-of-pocket costs even more. While Medicare is available to individuals over the age of 65, it still doesn't cover every single cost or... Continue reading
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Thousands of consumers, many seniors, tricked into paying for promised prizes that never arrived. Federal officials announced the indictment of three people who used an old-school method—mail fraud—to scam at least $30 million from thousands of people across the country. The three, Tully Lovisa, Shaun Sullivan, and Lorraine Chalavoutis, were... Continue reading
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When the family vacation home is passed from one generation to the next, there are certain tax issues to be aware of, particularly the step-up in basis. However, there may also be state taxes. The first part of understanding the tax responsibility when you plan on giving it to your... Continue reading
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Selecting the individuals who will make important decisions on your behalf, when you are incapacitated or have passed away, is not to be done lightly. Is there a bomb ticking quietly in your estate plan? The chances are good that there is, says Forbes in “Defusing The Time Bombs In... Continue reading
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Will Bruce Forsyth still be as beloved, now that the public knows he did not leave any of his millions of dollars to his children? Or do they recognize a tax strategy that’s well known in the United Kingdom? The widow of one of England’s legendary entertainers, Bruce Forsyth, has... Continue reading
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To make it past the first generation, family owned businesses need a lot of communication and planning for succession. The challenge is clear: less than a third of all family owned businesses will survive to the second generation. By the third generation, prospects for survival are even worse—only one in... Continue reading
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How much of your Social Security benefits are taxable depends on several factors. You’ll need the bigger picture of your retirement income to know how much of a hit you can expect. Depending on the amount of other income and Social Security benefits, those benefits are included with other taxable... Continue reading
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If you want to be remembered as the person who made sure your heirs had all the information they needed about what you wanted, for funeral arrangements as well as what to do with Great Aunt Joan’s diamond bracelet, you might want to consider writing an ethical will. An inheritance... Continue reading
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One of the heroes of American’s Apollo space program is now engaged in a lawsuit against his own children, while his children have filed a petition saying he is suffering from dementia. This is not how we think the storybook life of Buzz Aldrin should be remembered. Aldrin, a legendary... Continue reading
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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