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Attorney Michael Goss
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The moment you become a parent, you need a will. The same is true once you acquire any kind of asset that you want to give to someone after you die. It’s really that simple. The reasons why so many people don’t think they need a will fall into a... Continue reading
When all of your time is spent battling the challenges of mental illness or addiction, it’s hard to imagine what the future will bring. However, that’s exactly why estate planning is so important. It’s not an easy issue to discuss with an estate planning attorney for the first time. However,... Continue reading
Now that many members of the millennial generation are parents, it’s time for them to protect their families with estate plans, including naming guardians for their minor children. Yes, that generation is growing up! The numbers are pretty extreme. A recent study by reveals that 88% of 18–36 year-old... Continue reading
More than 45 million Americans take care of an elderly family member, usually an aging parent. This can have negative impact on their own family, from finances to strained relationships. It only seems fair: your parents took care of you when you were young, and now they need your help.... Continue reading
There are two ways to give the family home to your children without having the property go through probate, but how do you know which one is better? Being in the position to give your children or child ownership of the family home, keeps the house in the family and... Continue reading
If we remove the reluctance to consider our own mortality and focus on the legal aspects, perhaps it becomes easier to see why having a will is so important. Ben Franklin had it mostly right – “…nothing can be said to be certain, except death and taxes.” We’d add one... Continue reading
Inheritances by their very nature, create many mixed emotions. While you are grateful for the inheritance, you are grieving, which is a painful experience that impacts decision-making skills. Perhaps the most important thing to know when you are grieving the loss of a loved one and expect to receive an... Continue reading
One of the hardest pieces of the financial puzzle for Special Needs Families is balancing parent’s retirement planning while ensuring that the Special Needs family member gets the care they need. Planning for life after the parents of a Special Needs child pass away, must include ensuring that the individual... Continue reading
You might think that any doctor seeing patients over a certain age would automatically screen for Alzheimer’s or other dementia-related diseases, but until now that has not been the case. Starting in January, Medicare will now begin reimbursing doctors for screening and providing information about care planning for patients with... Continue reading
All too often, adult children are at a loss when their elderly parents encounter a health care emergency. If the kids can’t find health care proxies and DNRs (Do Not Resuscitate orders), they won’t be able to help their parents the way their parents had wished. Before an emergency strikes,... Continue reading
Part One of putting your affairs in order is having an estate plan in place and updated on a regular basis. Part Two is getting your information organized and discussing it with loved ones. If you were suddenly and unexpectedly to become incapacitated, would your spouse or adult children know... Continue reading
Consider what would happen if you are seriously injured with no estate plan in place? The resulting expense, stress and potential for conflict in the family could be worse than you might think. With a dramatic flourish, a recent article in AgPro, “4 Estate Planning Documents You Need Beyond a... Continue reading
Of all the gifts on your holiday list, perhaps the best one is to have your financial and estate paperwork organized, sparing your family the stress and misery of an estate scavenger hunt. This year’s Thanksgiving brought families together to share memories and to talk turkey and football. However, one... Continue reading
Even a long-standing relationship of more than a decade does not entitle a partner to an inheritance, if the person is not included in the will. A recent ruling by the Pennsylvania Court of Appeals may spark some interesting conversations between unmarried couples about estate planning. The woman, who was... Continue reading
Caring for aging parents or an aging spouse requires the ability to advocate on their behalf. Some people find it easier than others, but it can be learned. We take on many roles when we need to take care of aging family members, from driving them to appointments, managing their... Continue reading
There are a few situations in life where surprises are not fun: the operating room and a post-funeral meeting with the estate planning attorney. You could have the best of intentions and even the best estate plan possible. But if your heirs haven’t been told what you have in mind,... Continue reading
Planning for life with Alzheimer’s includes selecting trusted family members or friends who can assist with legal and financial matters. It was at least three years after his diagnosis that comedic actor Gene Wilder revealed he was suffering from Alzheimer’s disease. This is not unusual, according to experts discussing his... Continue reading
Certain organizations are known for providing amazing customer service. Social Security is not usually one of them. However, there are some services that Social Security does offer that are not well known and that could make life easier for many. Good news is hard to find when it comes to... Continue reading
If you are the beneficiary of someone’s life insurance policy, you should know that there are options as to how the policy funds, known as death benefits, can be distributed. In most situations, the beneficiary of a life insurance policy does not have to pay income taxes on death benefits,... Continue reading
You know you need life insurance to protect your loved ones. But do you know that having a will is equally important to protect against risks? Without a will, your family faces a number of potential financial disasters. If you think you don’t need a will because you aren’t wealthy... Continue reading
Think of an estate plan as a love letter to your family after you have passed. You’d be surprised at how many people you know don’t have a will or an estate plan in place. They may be among the many who have an unspoken belief that if they don’t... Continue reading
Nearly every time I ask an estate planning client, “What concerns you most?” the answer is “Taxes!” And nearly every time, I get to tell them, “Stop worrying! Death taxes aren’t an issue for you or your family.” The good news is that the Indiana Inheritance Tax was abolished in... Continue reading
Passing your home to your heirs can occur in a number of ways, depending upon your situation and your family. It’s not a do-it-yourself project—even in the simplest cases. If you own a home and want to leave it to your loved ones, there are steps you need to take... Continue reading
Telephone scams and theft of prescriptions pills are among the many different types of elder abuse, but in all instances, the numbers are rising. It is estimated that more than $2.6 billion dollars are lost to elder financial abuse and exploitation, according to The Hillsdale (MI) Daily News in “Understanding... Continue reading
Far too many parents are stunned to learn that healthcare providers and colleges are by law not permitted to speak with them about their children without the correct documents in place. That long-awaited, bittersweet moment has finally arrived: your children are headed off to college. They are now adults—and likely... Continue reading