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Legacy Counsellors, P.C.
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“The inheritance you leave could be eaten away by taxes or given to the wrong person. Here are five tips to avoid that.” It is true that a single person who dies in 2020 could have up to $11.58 million in personal assets and their heirs would not have to... Continue reading
Posted 10 hours ago at Legacy Counsellors, P.C.
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“Second (or third or fourth) marriages often require careful balancing between the needs of the surviving spouse and the needs of the children from a previous marriage.” It takes a certain kind of courage to embark on second, third or even fourth marriages, even when there are no children from... Continue reading
Posted 2 days ago at Legacy Counsellors, P.C.
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“Most people wish to have more control over who and how their assets are managed than what the state laws provide, and so they draft documents that can override the Laws of Intestacy, when those laws do not match their objectives.” Transferring the management of assets if and when you... Continue reading
Posted 7 days ago at Legacy Counsellors, P.C.
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“First, let’s debunk the myth that an estate plan needs to be both elaborate and expensive.” Many people think you have to be a millionaire to need an estate plan and investing in an estate plan is too costly for an average American. Not true! People of modest means actually... Continue reading
Posted Oct 19, 2020 at Legacy Counsellors, P.C.
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“As a result of illness, old age or incapacity, what may happen when you can no longer handle your own decision-making, handle your own money or make your own health care choices? Who can step in to help and how are they empowered?” For the most part, we are free... Continue reading
Posted Oct 16, 2020 at Legacy Counsellors, P.C.
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“Estate planning is all about ensuring that your wishes are met after your death. All estate plans should include a will and powers of attorney. However, in many cases, a trust has additional benefits beyond what can be accomplished with the will and powers of attorney.” How would funding a... Continue reading
Posted Oct 15, 2020 at Legacy Counsellors, P.C.
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“These all-too-common misconceptions can steer your estate plans in the wrong direction right from the start. Here’s how to overcome them and tips to build the right plan for your family.” Estate planning should be a business-like process, where people evaluate the assets they have accumulated over time and make... Continue reading
Posted Oct 14, 2020 at Legacy Counsellors, P.C.
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“For most of us, considering the distribution of the property we have accumulated over our lives is a painful reminder of our mortality.” Overcoming an emotional response to the necessary task becomes complicated, when we want to leave uneven distributions of our property to loved ones, including children and spouses.... Continue reading
Posted Oct 9, 2020 at Legacy Counsellors, P.C.
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“LOIs may also include whatever you think may help the people you leave behind or who would take over if you are not capable.” A letter of instruction, or LOI, is a good addition to the documents included in your estate plan. It’s commonly used to express advice, wishes and... Continue reading
Posted Oct 7, 2020 at Legacy Counsellors, P.C.
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“Only you know the strengths and weaknesses of your family members, putting you in the best position to decide if your spouse or your child can appreciate a trustee’s responsibilities.” To protect all that you have worked for and take care of the most important people in your life, you... Continue reading
Posted Oct 5, 2020 at Legacy Counsellors, P.C.
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“Why wait? A variety of trusts—from SLATs to BDITs, GRATs and more—can help you be proactive in protecting your wealth.” You might remember a flurry of activity in advance of the 2016 presidential election, when concerns about changes to the estate tax propelled many people to review their estate plans.... Continue reading
Posted Oct 2, 2020 at Legacy Counsellors, P.C.
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“My aunt recently asked me to be the executor of her will when she dies. I’m flattered that she asked, but I’m not sure what exactly the job entails.” Being asked to serve as the executor of a loved one’s estate is flattering, but it is also a big responsibility... Continue reading
Posted Sep 30, 2020 at Legacy Counsellors, P.C.
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“To ensure your estate is settled in the way you want, it's wise to do a bit of extra planning to keep your documents up to date.” For anyone who thinks that their will or trust can be used to distribute assets in a 401(k) after they pass, think again.... Continue reading
Posted Sep 28, 2020 at Legacy Counsellors, P.C.
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“The list of things you need to do after someone dies can seem endless, especially during a time when you are also grieving.” Making funeral arrangements, paying medical bills and closing down accounts are just the start of the tasks that a surviving spouse must take charge of, advises the... Continue reading
Posted Sep 25, 2020 at Legacy Counsellors, P.C.
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“The distribution of some of our assets can be governed by contracts. Examples of these contracts include life insurance, investment accounts, bank accounts and trusts.” Without proper planning, your will determines who inherits your property—everything from your home, car, bank accounts and personal possessions. Your spouse may not necessarily be... Continue reading
Posted Sep 23, 2020 at Legacy Counsellors, P.C.
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“Although there is often a progression of complexity in estate planning, this progression generally follows stages in life rather than specific ages.” Many people decide they need an estate plan when they reach a certain age, but when an estate plan is needed is less about age than it is... Continue reading
Posted Sep 21, 2020 at Legacy Counsellors, P.C.
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“As family members age and require care, the burden of that care often falls on an adult child. For those that leave jobs to care for family members, it can become a financial hardship for the family.” The idea that a family member or trusted friend may be paid to... Continue reading
Posted Sep 11, 2020 at Legacy Counsellors, P.C.
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“Estate planning can come in a variety of forms, from basic beneficiary designations when you open a bank or brokerage account to more complex and comprehensive plans.” The key reason for estate planning is to create a plan directing where your assets will go after you die. The ultimate goal... Continue reading
Posted Sep 9, 2020 at Legacy Counsellors, P.C.
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“Develop a successful transition plan that will provide for you, your heirs and your business.” Most American farms or ranches are family businesses, started by one generation with the hope that the business will be transferred to the next generation. However, surveys show that only 20% of farm and ranch... Continue reading
Posted Sep 7, 2020 at Legacy Counsellors, P.C.
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“Trusts are legal entities that own assets, and all trusts are not alike. They are created by a written trust document with certain provisions that can vary from trust to trust.” There are a few things all trusts have in common, explains the article “All trusts are not alike,” from... Continue reading
Posted Sep 4, 2020 at Legacy Counsellors, P.C.
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“When creating an estate plan, one important question to consider is how to handle the transfer of personal property, including your home. A Qualified Personal Residence Trust, or QPRT, is something you may decide to create to minimize gift and estate taxes associated for your heirs.” A Qualified Personal Residence... Continue reading
Posted Sep 2, 2020 at Legacy Counsellors, P.C.
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“Windfalls can result from fortunate events, like lottery winning, and unfortunate events, like a legal settlement. Whatever the triggering event, a big injection of cash can certainly be a life-changing event in someone’s life.” Few would complain about a financial windfall, but many people report feeling feelings of anxiety, guilt... Continue reading
Posted Aug 31, 2020 at Legacy Counsellors, P.C.
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“Creditors typically try to collect on unpaid debt, by going after the decedent’s estate during a process called probate.” When a person dies, it’s not unusual for them to leave behind some unpaid debt. What happens to that debt depends upon how their estate was organized, says the article “This... Continue reading
Posted Aug 28, 2020 at Legacy Counsellors, P.C.
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“Probate and trust administration are not the same. There are important differences and similarities between administering a decedent’s probate estate and administering a decedent’s trust estate.” Many people get these two things confused. A recent article, “Appreciating the differences between probate and trust administration,” from Lake County News clarifies the... Continue reading
Posted Aug 3, 2020 at Legacy Counsellors, P.C.
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“Medicare has a series of income limits that trigger increasingly higher payments for retirees. And it’s not just the rich who are affected.” A 70% increase in Medicare premiums to $559 was a complete surprise to a woman who became a single taxpayer when her husband died. She felt like... Continue reading
Posted Jul 31, 2020 at Legacy Counsellors, P.C.