Expand Your Cast to Prevent Chaos

How Adding a Trust Protector Can Help You and Your Family You probably remember the cast of characters in your estate plan. You were the creator of your trust, known as the grantor, settlor, or trustmaker. The trustee controls the assets in the trust. For most revocable trusts, that’s also you, while you’re alive and...
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Reconsider Outright Inheritances

How to Protect Your Heirs and Your Legacy from Bad Decisions and Outside Influences Estate planning is an important and everlasting gift you can give your family. And setting up a smooth inheritance isn’t as hard as you might think. – Suze Orman After working diligently for decades to achieve your financial goals,...
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Beyond Wills and Trusts: 3 Documents Everyone Needs

When it comes to estate planning, you probably think of wills and trusts. But there are three other estate planning documents you should think about to make your plan complete: A Living Will A Healthcare Directive, also called an Advance Directive, Medical or Healthcare Power of Attorney, or Designation of Healthcare...
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The Only Constant in Life is Change

When Circumstances Change, So Should Your Estate Plan Your estate plan was written to reflect your situation at a specific point in time –  and – as we all know – our lives continually change, unfolding in ways we might not have anticipated. Just like you meet with your doctor, financial advisor, or CPA on a regular...
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Dispelling a Malicious Myth: Irrevocable Trusts Aren’t Irrevocable

It’s counterintuitive, we know: irrevocable trusts are revocable (and amendable). Unfortunately, irrevocability is a malicious myth. The uninformed could spend years relying on an old, out-of-date trust that could be updated and improved without too much effort. Yes, the so-called “irrevocable trusts” absolutely can...
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Wills Vs Trusts In Plain English

Everyone has heard of wills and trusts. Most articles written on these topics, however, often presume that everyone knows the basics of these important documents. But, in reality, many of us don’t – and with good reason – as they’re rooted in complicated, centuries-old law. Let’s face it, if you’re not an estate...
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How To Protect Your Retirement Account

Shocking to most people, your retirement accounts can be seized once they pass to your loved ones. During your lifetime, your retirement funds have asset protection, meaning they can’t be taken in a lawsuit. Unfortunately, as soon as retirement accounts are inherited, the protection evaporates. This means your hard...
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Is There an Income Tax Time Bomb Lurking in Your Estate Plan?

As the federal estate tax exemption has ballooned from $1.5 million ten years ago to $5.43 million today, the need for estate tax planning has drastically decreased. Instead, higher income tax rates that were ushered in under the American Taxpayer Relief Act of 2012 (ATRA) have shifted the focus of estate planning to...
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Don’t Miss Out On These Year End Tax Planning Strategies

Don’t miss out on these year end tax planning strategies. Now is the ideal time to start year end tax planning so that credits and deductions can be maximized before the December 31st deadline. Below you will find a variety of tax-saving strategies you should consider using immediately so that you can get your 2015...
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