by Justin M. Kennedy, Attorney at Law Litherland, Kennedy & Associates, APC, Attorneys at Law Recently I met with a client, Tammy, who wanted to immediately gift her home to her son, Eugene. Even though Tammy already had a comprehensive estate plan with our office that included a Living Trust, Tammy had talked with her friends who suggested gifting the home now was in her best interests. When I asked more questions, Tammy shared that one of her friends, Mike, had died without a Living Trust … [Read more...] about Gift Now or Let Them Inherit?
Blog Author: Stephen C. Hartnett, J.D., LL.M. (Tax), Director of Education, American Academy of Estate Planning Attorneys, Inc. Estate planning contemplates two different general time periods: During life and after your death. Estate planning needs also vary based on the goals you are trying to achieve. For example, after death, do you simply wish to transmit your assets, or do you wish to provide your loved ones with asset protection, tax protection, divorce protection, or other … [Read more...] about Estate Planning: Simple is not Always Better
Blog Author: Stephen C. Hartnett, J.D., LL.M. (Tax), Director of Education, American Academy of Estate Planning Attorneys, Inc. As I discussed in last week’s blog, retirement assets, including 401(k)s, IRAs, etc., comprise a large portion of the average American’s wealth. Planning for these assets is critical, not just due to their value, but also due to their special nature. Traditional IRAs and 401(k)s and the earnings on them are tax-deferred. Roth IRAs and 401(k)s are tax-free. However, … [Read more...] about Planning for Retirement Plans and IRAs: Asset Protection
Blog Author: Stephen C. Hartnett, J.D., LL.M. (Tax), Director of Education, American Academy of Estate Planning Attorneys, Inc. This is another in a series of blogs on the basics of estate planning. This week, we’ll take a look at asset protection. Much depends upon whose assets you are looking to protect. If the assets are those that are coming to you, the debtor, then typically, those can be protected completely. The debtor could protect their own assets in three general ways: 1) … [Read more...] about Basics of Estate Planning: Asset Protection
Elder Care Law Firms specialize in the issues that affect seniors. They are equipped to address the legal, healthcare, social and psychological needs of seniors and to develop a plan to meet those needs in an economical fashion that protects and preserves the income and assets of the elder to the greatest extent possible. How Can an Elder Care Law Firm Help You? If you are facing legal issues that include planning for Medi-Cal qualification, incapacity planning or end-of-life planning, an … [Read more...] about How an Elder Care Law Firm Can Help
By: Justin M. Kennedy, Attorney Litherland, Kennedy & Associates, APC, Attorneys at Law While at an estate planning conference in November, one of the speakers discussed a planning strategy that may benefit many married couples. The planning strategy involves adding Advanced Medi-Cal Triggers to a married couple’s estate plan, specifically a Spousal Election to the Living Trust and testamentary special needs trust language within the Pour-Over-Will. For a married couple, upon the first death, … [Read more...] about Advanced Medi-Cal Triggers – Spousal Election
By: Justin M. Kennedy, Attorney Litherland, Kennedy & Associates, APC, Attorneys at Law In 2016, the State of California introduced a new Transfer on Death Deed (TOD Deed). When the TOD Deed was first announced, we advised our clients against using it. One of the many reasons against using the TOD Deed is that the property could be subject to a Medi-Cal Estate Recovery claim upon the owner’s death. As of January 01, 2017, so long as the TOD Deed has at least one living beneficiary upon the … [Read more...] about Transfer on Death Deeds
by Matthew M. Shafae and Justin M. Kennedy, Attorneys Litherland, Kennedy & Associates, APC, Attorneys at Law A lot of estate planning hypothetical situations involve the spouse dying, and the survivor getting hitched with some nefarious predator who is only after the survivor’s wealth. All of our attention is paid toward preserving the estate and protecting the kids. But what about a second marriage that actually benefits the kids, and helps preserve the estate? We recently had precisely that … [Read more...] about Portability and Second Marriages
By: Matthew M. Shafae, Attorney Litherland, Kennedy & Associates, APC, Attorneys at Law The living trust is the bedrock foundation upon which our estate plans are built. It’s right there in the word: trust. It sounds safe and secure; it’s warm peace of mind. If you’ve been to one of our seminars or workshops, you’ve probably heard us tout the benefits of an asset-protection trust, and how our clients typically take advantage of this estate planning enhancement to leave property to loved ones … [Read more...] about Are All Trusts Asset-Protecting Trusts?
By: Justin M. Kennedy, Associate Attorney Litherland, Kennedy & Associates, APC, Attorneys at Law If you are concerned that you may be sued in the future, you may want to consider ways of protecting your assets. As a Trustor, many asset protection strategies may not available to you, however, you have the ability to give the beneficiaries under your trust asset protection. The asset protection to the trust beneficiaries would protect their inheritance from the beneficiaries' … [Read more...] about Asset Protection Strategy – 529 Plans