Most adults in the United States do not have estate plans in place, and when they do take some type of action, it is often hastily done and incomplete. Yes, you have to the state your final wishes in writing, but you should also consider the hands-on tasks that must be completed after you are gone. Attention to detail is key, and we provide some insight in this post. Administration of a Will If you use a will as your asset transfer vehicle, you would name an executor to act as the … [Read more...] about Facilitate a Smooth Estate Administration Process
There is no one-size-fits-all estate plan that is right for everyone, but the differences are related to the asset transfer methods that can be used. Aside from that, there is a basic framework that is universal, and it boils down to the execution of five core documents. Asset Transfers The flexible portion is the asset transfer component. Obviously, you can state your final wishes in a simple will, but there are drawbacks and limitations. One of them is the fact that a will is admitted to … [Read more...] about Five Must-Have Estate Planning Documents
Alzheimer’s disease affects far too many families, and the impact is felt on a number of different levels. In this post, we will share some key facts that will open your eyes if you have not explored the subject. Facts and Figures Everyone knows that Alzheimer’s causes dementia, but aside from the memory loss, there is another aspect that flies under the radar. If you were to name the diseases that kill the most people in the United States, breast cancer and prostate cancer may come to … [Read more...] about Alzheimer’s Is a Looming Threat
Most people do not have estate plans in place, and many of them are well aware of the fact that they should take action. The reason why they procrastinate is because they really do not know where to begin. With this in mind, we will provide a brief outline in this post so you can start to think about the structure of your plan if you have not done so already. Create an Inheritance List Clearly, some people have very straightforward inheritance planning intentions. For example, you and your … [Read more...] about Estate Planning: Where Do You Begin?
If you ask a sampling of people to explain what estate planning is all about, most of them would say that you draw up a will. Of course, you can use a will to express your final wishes, but there are some good reasons why you may want to consider utilizing a trust instead. We will look at five of them in this post. Special Needs Planning You have to consider benefit eligibility if you are going to be leaving an inheritance to a loved one with special needs. Many people with disabilities rely … [Read more...] about Five Reasons to Use a Trust
Probate is an estate administration process that takes place under the supervision of a court. Some people are aware of the existence of probate and they think that it is a universal necessity. This perception follows the widely held belief that estate planning boils down to the execution of a simple will. In this post, we will provide some clarity so you can go forward in an informed manner. Simple Wills and the Probate Process A will is in fact admitted to probate after the death of the … [Read more...] about Is Probate Always Required?
As we begin a new year, it’s a good time to start off right. If you don’t already have an estate plan, now’s a great time to make an appointment with an estate planning attorney to get one. Read on to learn more. … [Read more...] about Starting the New Year Right
As elder law attorneys, we advise clients that are concerned about potential long-term care costs. The majority of elders will need help with their activities of daily living, and a significant percentage of them will require paid care. You can expect to pay over $125,000 for a year in a nursing home in the Burlington, Vermont area, and you are look at almost $70,000 for a professional home-health aide. Almost all seniors qualify for Medicare coverage, and it is a solid source of health … [Read more...] about Medicaid Planning: Update Figures for 2021
Over recent weeks, we have been passing along various updated figures that are relevant from an estate planning and elder law perspective. In this post, we are going to answer a question that many people have about the annual gift tax exclusion. Before we focus on that particular subject, we will provide the appropriate background information, which will include a review of the 2021 estate tax parameters. Inflation Adjustment The federal estate tax exclusion is a set dollar amount that can … [Read more...] about Was There a 2021 Gift Tax Exclusion Increase?
Vermont is one of just 12 states with state-level estate taxes, and the District of Columbia has its own estate tax. The exclusion is the amount that can be transferred before the estate tax would be applied on the remainder. The amount of the exclusion is set by the legislature, and after it has been established, there can be adjustments on an annual basis to account for the cost of living. Since the calendar has turned over, an estate tax exclusion adjustment has been made for 2021. Last … [Read more...] about What Is the 2021 Vermont State Estate Tax Exclusion?