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MaKayla Hanington
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The idea that spouses and their stepchildren will share the legal power to make health care decision sounds good in theory, but, in practice, there may be some unexpected side effects. Simple things get complicated in blended families. It’s often the nature of the beast. The idea that stepchildren and... Continue reading
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The foundation of your estate plan is a will, also known as a last will and testament. Depending upon your situation, your estate planning attorney may recommend additional documents, including trusts. The first part of your estate plan is the creation of a will to provide clear instructions of how... Continue reading
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If you have inherited the family homestead, there may be a number of different taxes that have to be paid depending on how the estate was structured and what state the decedent resided in. When a family’s home is sold and proceeds are divided between the siblings, it’s not likely... Continue reading
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No one plans to be elderly and alone, but if you are single and either have no immediate family members or are not close with your family, you need a game plan if you need long term care of any kind. If you are married or are close with your... Continue reading
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It seems like families need to spend more time discussing estate plans and their finances, especially if they are blended families, to prevent major disruptions. For the second consecutive year, family conflict was named as the biggest threat to estate planning by estate planning and elder law attorneys and other... Continue reading
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Virginia is taking steps to protect seniors and other vulnerable individuals against financial exploitation by giving financial institutions more resources to prevent this growing crime. With bipartisan support, the state House and Senate of Virginia have passed versions of State Bill 1490, which encourages financial institutions to have more leeway... Continue reading
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The period before retirement is a time when people dream about what the future might hold. They also worry because who hasn’t heard the stories about retirees who return to work because they retired too early? It’s no surprise then that little more than half of Americans surveyed by the... Continue reading
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Early adult life is simple. You may or may not have children, a car, a lease on an apartment. However, by the time you reach your 50s and 60s, you likely have some decent assets, like retirement accounts, investments, real estate and maybe even a few collectible cars. You’ll want... Continue reading
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The ING trust is used to generate tax savings in a number of ways. For the right person, they are a trend worth looking into. Are they right for you? The expanded transfer tax exemptions created by the 2017 tax reform legislation will end in 2026. However, in the meantime,... Continue reading
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Life insurance can help heirs avoid having to incur expenses like estate taxes, funeral costs and similar expenses. However, it also gives heirs breathing room so they can make the best use of other assets. Here is an example of how life insurance should work. A father, Howie, dies and... Continue reading
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If someone dies in Canada, and her heirs live in New Jersey, are there any estate inheritance taxes owned? A recent article from nj.com’s asks for advice if “My sister died in Canada. Will I owe inheritances taxes to New Jersey?” Unless the sister owned property in New Jersey, any... Continue reading
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A national credit union association sent a letter for the record to the Senate Special Committee on Aging stating its support of efforts to protect seniors from financial exploitation. CUNA, the Credit Union National Association, wants to see more help for seniors, who are targeted victims of elder financial abuse... Continue reading
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It’s not a concept that everyone agrees with: your kids will be ruined if you leave them a lot of money. However, for many celebrities, especially those who came from modest beginnings, this is the best way to ensure that their kids are not spoiled brats. Sometimes we learn about... Continue reading
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If estate planning had a different name, like planning for aging or planning for sickness and death, people might not think that an estate plan is only for wealthy people. However, the legal term “estate” means everything you own. A humble homeowner needs an estate plan as much as, or... Continue reading
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The cost of paying for special needs care depends on the type and intensity of each individual’s condition. Planning for care, including the use of Special Needs Trusts, can help families manage costs and plan for the future. The financial needs of a loved one with special needs can be... Continue reading
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For people who like to plan and don’t trust anyone else to get the details right, estate planning and even funeral planning can provide peace of mind. If you watched the funeral of the former President George H. W. Bush, you may have noticed how smoothly everything went. Every detail... Continue reading
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Live long enough, and you learn that life can change in a heartbeat. Young adults don’t always know this, but they need to have an estate plan as much as older people. Whether you are a Baby Boomer or a millennial, you need to have an estate plan. With the... Continue reading
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You know that health care, taxes and not saving enough for retirement can derail retirement. However, what about the risks you never saw coming? Consider these three risks to retirement says Wealth Advisor in the article, “The Three Risks To Prepare For In Retirement.” They are a little less obvious... Continue reading
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Among the top three reasons for an estate plan are to make sure that your assets are distributed according to your wishes, helping your loved ones from having to pay more taxes than necessary and if possible, avoiding having your estate go through probate. When there are minor children or... Continue reading
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It sounds crazy, but there are many good reasons why someone would not want to receive an inheritance. Making sure that you are not forced to receive assets must be done very carefully, so you’ll need an estate planning attorney on your team. An estate waiver, also known as an... Continue reading
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There are opportunities to trade options using Roth IRAs, but investors must follow many of the rules that apply to traditional IRAs. That includes restrictions on withdrawals and limitations on certain trading strategies and the types of securities that can be traded. From the time they were introduced, Roth IRAs... Continue reading
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Now you can direct your funeral from the great beyond, if you live in the Wolverine State. Here’s a concept that is perfect for people who like to be in charge: about two years ago, Michigan enacted a law that lets you name a funeral representative, a person who is... Continue reading
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Often overlooked, the beneficiary designation can help move assets directly to heirs without going through the probate process. Many accounts and financial products allow the owner or investor to designate a beneficiary, who will receive the asset directly when the owner passes away. This is something that most of us... Continue reading
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529 college savings plans are a great way to fund a college education and they can now also be used for other educational needs. However, they can also be part of your estate plan. Before exploring a new use for a 529 plan, let’s start with how it has been... Continue reading
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Maybe you made your first million in a crowdfunded start up, and now you’re working with venture capitalists on your next big idea. If marriage is on your event horizon, you may need a prenup. Not every tech-savvy entrepreneur makes millions, but many millennials are finding themselves in the right... Continue reading