For the Love of Your Family

Articles to LIFT Your Family

What You Can Learn From Three-Time NYC Mayor Ed Koch’s Will About Your Estate Planning

Three-time New York City Mayor Ed Koch died on Feb. 1, leaving an estate estimated between $10-$11 million.  And it’s a good thing that “Hizzoner” loved governing, because one-quarter of his estate will be going to the state and federal governments. During his tenure as Mayor, Koch was famous for asking people on the street, […]

Read More

Striking a Balance Between Funding Your Retirement and Your Child’s Education

Many parents perceive a conflict between funding a child’s college education and building their own retirement nest egg.  The conflict usually arises from the lack of financial resources to do both while funding daily living expenses, so parents become stuck between priorities and usually wind up doing nothing at all. One of the things a […]

Read More

The Risks of Poorman’s Estate Planning: How to Pass on Property & Avoid Probate the Right Way

They call it the “poor man’s estate planning.”  Put your child on the title to your deed and avoid probate.  Yet this “poor man’s” planning often ends up, well, poorly; and costing a lot more for the people you love. Here’s why and what you can do about it: Risk #1 of Poorman’s Estate Planning: […]

Read More

The Fiscal Cliff Tax Deal: For Most of Us, It’s a Wash

The American Taxpayer Relief Act of 2012 that Congress passed on New Year’s Day extended the Bush era tax cuts, but the benefits of those cuts for most American taxpayers will be offset by a 2% increase in payroll tax. According to the Tax Policy Center, a nonpartisan Washington research group, less than 1% of […]

Read More

What is the Difference Between a Will-based plan and a Trust-based plan?

In this article I will explain the difference between a Will-based plan and a Trust-based plan so you can make an educated decision for your family about what is best for you and, ultimately, for them. A Will-based plan is an estate plan that does not include a Living Trust to hold title to your […]

Read More

How to Correctly Name Beneficiaries for Your IRAs

You could be unintentionally reducing your family’s wealth potential if you do not properly designate the beneficiaries of your IRAs.  Improper estate planning could mean that your IRA assets could pass to the wrong people or entities, so how you execute your beneficiary designations is critically important. Here are some of the steps that need […]

Read More

What to Do When You Inherit a Retirement Account

As a Personal Family Lawyer®, I am often asked to help people who inherit a retirement account.  The action you need to take with an inherited IRA depends upon your unique situation; the IRS has rules for each and recently announced that they will be cracking down on taxpayers who make mistakes with inherited IRAs.  […]

Read More

What a Will Won’t Do

There are a number of essential things a last will and testament can do for you, such as distribute family heirlooms and name a guardian for minor children, but there are some equally important things a will won’t do: Diminish estate taxes – a will won’t help you decrease your estate taxes, but a Personal […]

Read More

Avoid these 10 Common Estate Planning Mistakes

As a Personal Family Lawyer®, I see many of the same estate planning mistakes made time and again by people who either fail to plan properly or who use “do-it-yourself” estate planning websites or forms in an effort to save money. Without professional guidance, this can cause more problems for your heirs and end up […]

Read More

Looking for a licensed Personal Family Lawyer®?