Latest Articles

There is no shortage of advice flying around about estate planning, much of it from people who aren't even lawyers. Get insight on the popular pitfalls and how emerging economic shifts like cryptocurrency can affect your plan.

14 Ways to Show Your Finances Some Love This Year - Part 1

Ah, February – the month of love, where hearts flutter and chocolates abound (single people, stay with me...

Think Your Kids Will Automatically Be Cared For In the Way You Want? They Might Not Be Unless You Do This

As parents, we're hardwired to prioritize our children's well-being above all else. We work tirelessly to...

This New Law Makes It Easier to Save for Retirement and Pay Off School Loans At The Same Time

Navigating your financial journey with the heavy burden of student loan debt on your back can feel overwh...

Want to Show Your Partner How Much You Love Them? Put Them In Your Will

Love is undoubtedly the most profound and cherished thread that weaves us all together, and there are man...

2 Conversations About Money and Death You Need to Have With Your Parents Right Now

If you’ve given any thought about estate planning, you probably associate it with preparing for death. Bu...

Protecting Your Family's Safety Net: How to Set Up Your Life Insurance Policy The Right Way

A comprehensive Life & Legacy Plan is about creating a strategy that lets you enjoy your life to the ...

This Change to The FAFSA Rules Could Help Your Grandkids Qualify for More Student Aid

Want to contribute to your grandchild’s future college education? The FAFSA Simplification Act, which wen...

Your Most Important New Year's Resolution: Creating a Kids Protection Plan

As we welcome the New Year, filled with hope and resolutions for a brighter future, one commitment should...

Hiring a Lawyer: What Flat Fees and Hourly Fees Mean For Your Family

Trying to find the right lawyer to help with your estate planning can often feel like navigating uncharte...

What Caregivers Need to Know About Estate Planning for a Loved One With Dementia - Part 2

Last week, we started our discussion on estate planning for a loved one with a dementia diagnosis and wha...

What Caregivers Need to Know About Estate Planning for a Loved One With Dementia - Part 1

Caring for a loved one with dementia is a challenge that millions of families undertake each year. As a c...

Holding Space for Grief: Ways to Comfort and Support A Loved One in Mourning

Losing a loved one is an incredibly challenging experience, and the journey through grief can be both com...

Have Unused 529 College Savings? Roll Them Into a Roth in 2024

In December 2022, Congress passed the SECURE 2.0 Act, bringing significant changes to the world of retire...

Q&A I want to keep things simple. Can I leave my 401K to my kids and our house to my wife?

QUESTION Q: I want to keep things simple. Can I leave my 401K to my kids and our house to my wife? — Clea...

Own a Business? Do This By December 31st to Get a Year-Long Extension To The Corporate Transparency Act Reporting Deadline

Business ownership is a fulfilling and exciting endeavor, but it also comes with rules, responsibilities,...

What You Must Know About Your Right to Your Spouse’s Retirement Benefits

If you’re part of a blended family (meaning you are married with children from a prior marriage in the mi...

How to Talk Money With Your Family Over The Holiday

The holidays are right around the corner, which means more time to gather with family and relatives than ...

Transition to Adulthood: What Happens When My Child Turns 18

Soon after the challenges of puberty and the excitement of high school, an even larger milestone looms: t...

Q&A: My mother has a hard time hearing her doctor on the phone. How can I help?

QUESTION Q: My mother has a hard time hearing her doctor on the phone. How can I help? – Caring Daughter ...

The Scary Truth: Naming Godparents Does Not Create Legal Guardians

As a parent, your top priority is the well-being and future of your children. You plan for their educatio...

Year-End Tax Planning Starts Now: 8 Things To Do Now to Lower Your 2023 Taxes - Part 2

Last week we looked at four different ways to lower your tax liability for 2023, from adjusting your tax ...

Year-End Tax Planning Starts Now: 8 Things To Do Now to Lower Your 2023 Taxes - Part 1

It might seem a bit early to think about your 2023 taxes, but as the year draws to a close, it's the perf...

From 'I Do' to 'What If': Estate Planning Must-Do's for Newlyweds - Part 2

Getting married and starting a new chapter in your life is an exciting time. It’s also a time that requir...

From 'I Do' to 'What If': Estate Planning Must-Do's for Newlyweds - Part 1

Wedding season is winding down, and if you are a newlywed or are planning to tie the knot soon, it’s time...

wills and trusts
AARP and The Red Cross Celebrate Make-A-Will Month, But Here’s What They Didn’t Tell You

August is National Make-A-Will Month and you may have received an advertisement in your inbox or mailbox ...

Featured, Estate Planning
Help Your Parents Avoid These New Financial Scams - Part 1

Fraudsters and scam artists are nothing new, but changing tools and technology are making it easier than ...

Clarifying Questions
Q&A: My Parents Shut Down When I Try to Talk About Estate Planning. How Can I Help Them Open Up?

QUESTION Q: My parents shut down when I try to talk about estate planning. How can I help them open up? –...

Enlightened Insurance
Can You Rely on Legal Insurance for Your Estate Plan?

As the need for affordable legal services becomes even more important in today’s world, it's common to op...

Kids Protection Planning
Don’t Send Your Kids Back to School Without These Documents

As summer comes to a close, and back-to-school excitement fills the air, there is one crucial task that i...

Estate Planning
10 Life Events That Signal It's Time to Review Your Estate Plan - Part 2

You might think that estate planning is something you can complete one time and then check off your to-do...

Estate Planning
10 Life Events That Signal It’s Time to Review Your Estate Plan - Part 1

Maybe you thought that creating a Will or Trust is something you can do once and then your family and ass...

Family Financial Planning
What the National Debt Ceiling Extension Means for Your Family

You’ve probably heard about the national debt ceiling and its recent extension, but you might wonder what...

Life Planning, Estate Planning
Awakened Planning: How to Talk About Estate Planning at Your Family Reunion

July is National Family Reunion Month and the perfect time to reconnect with family from near and far, sh...

Life Planning, Estate Planning
Vacation Ready: Essential Legal Preparations for a Worry-Free Getaway

Vacations are a time to relax, unwind, and create beautiful memories with your loved ones. But before you...

Asset Protection
Have a Trust? How the Corporate Transparency Act Affects You

Get ready for an interesting twist in the world of legal and business news. You may already be familiar w...

Blended Family Issues, Estate Planning
The Importance of Customized Estate Planning for LGBTQ+ Relationships - Part 2

Last week we started the discussion of why it’s so important for LGBTQ+ families to invest in custom esta...

Blended Family Issues, Estate Planning
The Importance of Customized Estate Planning for LGBTQ+ Relationships - Part 1

June is a time of celebration and reflection for the LGBTQ+ community as Pride Month shines a spotlight o...

Life Planning, Planning for Seniors
Capturing the Stories of Aging Loved Ones: The Power of Family Wealth Legacy Interviews

May is Senior Citizen’s Month, a time to reflect and appreciate all the things the seniors in our lives h...

Family Financial Planning, Life Planning, Estate Planning
Want to Grow Wealth? Warren Buffet's Unexpected Investment Advice

If you are going to take investment and estate planning advice from anyone, Warren Buffett is likely one ...

wills and trusts, Estate Planning
Why "Just a Will" Is Never Enough

When you think of estate planning, a Will is usually the first thing that comes to mind. In fact, most pe...

Estate Planning
Create a Stronger Blended Family Through Estate Planning

Blended families were once considered “non-traditional” families, but today, blended families are becomin...

Awakened Parenting, Life Planning
4 Ways to Use AI to Make Life Easier for You and Your Family

Whether you’re turning on the news or scrolling through Instagram, it’s hard not to hear about AI technol...

Planning for Your Pets
Leaving Your Pet in Your Will Won’t Protect Them - Do This Instead

If you’re a pet owner, you know the special bond that exists between you and your pets, and to many pet o...

Celebrity Estate Planning, Estate Planning
Stephen “tWitch” Boss Dies Without a Will

Stephen Laurel Boss, also known as “tWitch,” was an American DJ, hip-hop dancer, choreographer, televisio...

Estate Planning Mistakes
3 Simple Mistakes That Can Derail Your Estate Plan

If you’re tempted to use a DIY estate planning service or have already created a plan you aren’t 100% con...

Estate Planning
Top 5 Questions To Consider Before Hiring A Lawyer For Your Estate Planning Needs

I know discussing topics like death, incapacity, and other potentially frightening life events, with some...

Estate Planning
Estate Planning Before You Travel: Why It's Critically Important

Vacations can be the perfect opportunity to relax, disconnect from work and responsibilities, and enjoy y...

Clarifying Questions
Q&A: Can you explain how the administration of a will works?

QUESTION Q: Can you explain how the administration of a will works? –Taking Care of Mom ANSWER A: Dear Ta...

Estate Planning
Why Everyone Needs to Keep Their Estate Plan Updated

As the world and its laws continue to evolve, everyone needs to keep their estate plans up to date. An es...

Caring for Elderly Parents
Obtaining A Power Of Attorney For Elderly Parents

Making important decisions for aging parents can be a challenging task, but power of attorney (POA) can p...

Estate Planning
Your Rights As The Parent Of A Young Adult — What You Need To Know When A Medical Crisis Hits

As a parent, you are quite accustomed to managing your children's legal and medical affairs, as circumsta...

Clarifying Questions
Q&A Can I leave my 401(k) to my minor children when I die?

QUESTION Q: Can I leave my 401(k) to my minor children when I die? –Pondering Parent ANSWER A: Dear Ponde...

Asset Protection
Keep the Government and Lawsuit Happy Opportunists Away From Your Children’s Inheritance

If you have a current estate plan, I'll bet you plan to leave your assets to your children outright and u...

Estate Planning
5 Reasons Why Shopping For The Cheapest Estate Plan Could Leave Your Family With An Unintended Mess

In most cases, from the most sophisticated business people with the highest net worth to those just start...

Estate Planning
Will Your Estate Plan Work When Your Family Needs It?

Like most people, you likely think estate planning is just one more task to check off your life’s endless...

Asset Protection
Before You Agree to Be a Trustee, Read This!

Being asked by a loved one to serve as Trustee for their Trust upon their death can be quite an honor, bu...

Clarifying Questions
Q&A Do I need to create a new will if I move to another state?

QUESTION Q: Do I need to create a new will if I move to another state? –Curious Mover ANSWER A: Dear Curi...

Life Planning
4 Common Mistakes Made On Life Insurance Beneficiary Designations

Investing in life insurance is a foundational part of estate planning, and when done right it’s a primary...

Estate Planning
Revocable Living Trust or Irrevocable Trust: Which One Is Right For You?

You’ve probably heard you need a trust to keep your family out of court and maybe out of conflict in the ...

Life Planning
Why Every Adult Needs A Living Will

When it comes to estate planning and wills, you have a variety of options for legal documents. The most c...

Estate Planning
Creditors And Your Estate Plan

What Happens To Your Debt When You Die? Maybe you’ve wondered about your own debt or perhaps your parent’...

wills and trusts
3 Essential Questions to Ask Before Creating Your Will Online

If you are looking to create your last will and testament, or will, online, you’ll find dozens of website...

Clarifying Questions
Q&A: How do I include cryptocurrency in my estate plan?

QUESTION Q: How do I include cryptocurrency in my estate plan? — Crypto Owner ANSWER A: Dear Crypto, If y...

Family Financial Planning
Checklist: 5 Financial Decisions to Consider Before December 31

This week, before the year ends, consider these 5 financial, retirement and tax actions you may need to t...

Life Planning
Green Funerals: 6 Eco-Friendly Options For Your Remains

The environmental costs of death are significant and constantly rising. With 8 billion people on the plan...

Estate Planning
Will The Coming Wealth Transfer Be A Blessing Or A Curse For Your Family?

Whether it’s called “The Great Wealth Transfer,” “The Silver Tsunami,” or some other catchy sounding name...

Family Financial Planning
4 Year-End Tax-Saving Strategies For 2022

Although the end of the year can be a hectic time, it’s also the deadline for your family to implement a ...

Clarifying Questions
Q&A: What is the federal estate tax?

QUESTION Q: What is the federal estate tax? — Tax Planner ANSWER A: Dear Planner, The federal estate tax ...

Estate Planning
How Will A Recession Affect Your Family?

As you’ve surely heard by now, we’re in the midst of great economic shifts. The collapse of the crypto ma...

Life Planning
7 Issues To Consider When Purchasing Disability Insurance

If you earn a good living now, but you worry about not having enough money for a future time when you can...

Estate Planning
How To Manage Your Digital Accounts After Your Death Part—3

If you have preferences about what happens to your digital footprint after your death, you need to take a...

Estate Planning
How To Manage Your Digital Accounts After Your Death Part—2

If you have preferences about what happens to your digital footprint after your death, you need to take a...

Clarifying Questions
Q&A: What estate planning should my child have in place once they reach adulthood?

QUESTION Q: What estate planning should my child have in place once they reach adulthood? — Proactive Par...

Estate Planning
How To Manage Your Digital Accounts After Your Death—Part 1

If you have preferences about what happens to your digital footprint after your death, you need to take a...

Family Financial Planning
Trusts & Taxes: What You Need To Know

People often come to us curious—or confused—about the role trusts play in saving on taxes. Given how freq...

Estate Planning
2022 Estate Planning Checkup: Is Your Estate Plan Up-To-Date?

This year, Estate Planning Awareness Week runs from October 17th to 23rd, and one of our primary goals is...

Life Planning
5 Smart Ways To Pay For Your Funeral That Won’t Leave Your Family To Foot The Bill

With the cost of a funeral averaging between $7,000 and $12,000 and steadily increasing each year, at the...

Clarifying Questions
Q&A: What is a pour-over will?

QUESTION Q: What is a pour-over will? — Prudent Planner ANSWER A: Dear Prudent, For a living trust to fun...

Celebrity Estate Planning
Anne Heche Dies With Conflict Around Her Will, Leaving Her Sons & Estate In Legal Limbo—Part 2

Actress Anne Heche died this August following a tragic car accident, leaving behind two young sons: Homer...

Celebrity Estate Planning
Anne Heche Dies With Conflict Around Her Will, Leaving Her Sons & Estate In Legal Limbo—Part 1

Actress Anne Heche died this August following a tragic car accident in which she plowed her vehicle into ...

wills and trusts, Estate Planning
How To Choose the Right Trustee

Before we talk about how to choose the right Trustee, let’s talk about what a Trustee does and whether yo...

Family Financial Planning
President Biden’s Student Debt Relief Plan Explained With FAQs

This August, President Biden, Vice President Harris, and the U.S. Department of Education (DOE) announced...

Estate Planning
Selling Real Estate Or A Business? Avoid Capital Gains Tax With A Charitable Remainder Trust

If you have a sale of real estate or assets coming up that will result in you owing capital gains tax, yo...

Life Planning
Protect Your Aging Loved Ones From Undue Influence

Following the death of a loved one, close family members are sometimes surprised to learn that they didn’...

Clarifying Questions
Q&A: Can I tap into my retirement savings to pay for my child’s college education?

Q & A: QUESTION ______________________________________________________________________________ Q: Can...

wills and trusts
What Your Last Will & Testament Will (And Will Not) Do—Part 2

August is “National Make-A-Will Month,” and if you have already prepared your will, congratulations—too f...

wills and trusts
What Your Last Will & Testament Will (And Will Not) Do—Part 1

August is “National Make-A-Will Month,” and if you have already prepared your will, congratulations—too f...

Family Financial Planning
Saving For Your Child’s College Education—Part 2

If you have started to save for your child or grandchild’s college education, it’s worth considering whet...

Family Financial Planning
Saving For Your Child’s College Education—Part 1

If you have started to save for your child or grandchild’s college education, it’s worth considering whet...

Clarifying Questions
Q&A: What is the “contestability period'' on a life insurance policy?

Q & A: QUESTION ______________________________________________________________________________ Q: Wha...

Asset Protection
4 Essential Strategies For Protecting Your Family's Assets

You might think that only the super wealthy need to worry about asset protection planning. But the truth ...

Estate Planning
How Estate Planning Can Reduce The High Cost Of Dying—Part 2

Despite the fact that it happens to every single one of us and is as every bit as natural as birth, very ...

Estate Planning
How Estate Planning Can Reduce The High Cost Of Dying—Part 1

Despite the fact that it happens to every single one of us and is as every bit as natural as birth, very ...

Estate Planning
5 Common Estate Planning Concerns For Your Second (Or More) Marriage

With divorce occurring in roughly 50% of all marriages in the U.S. and life expectancy increasing every d...

Enlightened Insurance
What You Need to Know About Collecting Life Insurance Proceed

If you're looking to collect life insurance proceeds as the policy’s beneficiary, the process is fairly s...

Clarifying Questions
Q&A Should the person I pick as my trustee have a background in law or finance?

Q & A: QUESTION ______________________________________________________________________________ Q: Sho...

Same Gender Couples
Estate Planning FAQs For LGBTQ+ Couples

As we are about to wrap up another Pride Month, the LGBTQ+ community faces an increasingly uncertain lega...

Estate Planning
3 Reasons Why Single Folks With No Children Need An Estate Plan

These days, more and more young people are delaying—if not totally foregoing—a life that involves marriag...

wills and trusts
If You’ve Been Asked To Serve As Trustee, Here’s What You Should Know

If a family member or friend has asked you to serve as trustee for their trust either during their life, ...

Estate Planning
How To Pass On Family Heirlooms & Keepsakes Without Causing A Family Feud

When creating an estate plan, people are often most concerned with passing on the “big things” like real ...

Awakened Parenting
Don't Let Your Kids Leave Home Without Signing These 3 Document

As we head into summer, many parents will see their children graduate high school and prepare to leave ho...

Clarifying Questions
Q&A What is the IRS’s “Rule of 55” for 401(k) plans?

Q & A: QUESTION Q: What is the IRS’s “Rule of 55” for 401(k) plans? -Ready to Retire ANSWER Dear Read...

Family Financial Planning
Key Milestones For Planning Your Retirement

The road to retirement is a long one, and as with any journey, it helps to have a few key milestones alon...

Estate Planning Mistakes
10 Common Estate Planning Mistakes Your Family Can’t Afford to Make—Part 2

Because estate planning involves actively thinking about and planning for frightening topics like death, ...

Estate Planning Mistakes
10 Common Estate Planning Mistakes Your Family Can’t Afford to Make—Part 1

Because estate planning involves actively thinking about and planning for frightening topics like death, ...

Clarifying Questions
Q&A: What is “diminished financial capacity”?

Q & A: QUESTION Q: What is “diminished financial capacity,” and why is it so dangerous for seniors? —...

Life Planning, Estate Planning
How Creating A Life & Legacy Plan Creates And Preserves Your Family's Legacy

When you think about loved ones who’ve passed away, you probably don’t think very much—or even at all—abo...

Asset Protection, Kids Protection Planning, Estate Planning
3 Reasons Why Transferring Ownership Of Your Home To Your Child Is A Bad Idea

Whether it’s to qualify for Medicaid, avoid probate, or reduce your tax burden, transferring ownership of...

Asset Protection, Kids Protection Planning, Estate Planning
How Naming Guardians For Your Kids In Your Will Can Leave Them At Risk

If you are a mom or dad with children under the age of 18 at home, your number-one estate planning priori...

Asset Protection, Family Financial Planning, Estate Planning
Does Your Family Need Umbrella Insurance?

In today’s highly litigious society you are at near-constant risk for costly lawsuits—even if you’ve done...

Asset Protection, Kids Protection Planning, wills and trusts
Protect Your Children’s Inheritance With A Lifetime Asset Protection Trust

As a parent, you’re likely hoping to leave your children an inheritance. In fact, doing so may be one of ...

Asset Protection, Family Financial Planning, Save Money On Your Taxes
7 Last-Minute Moves To Save On Your Taxes For 2021

Although many strategies to save on your income taxes must be locked in before the end of the year, there...

Clarifying Questions
Q&A How much can I write off on my 2021 income taxes for charitable donations?

Q & A: Q: How much can I write off on my 2021 income taxes for charitable donations if I don’t itemiz...

Asset Protection, wills and trusts, Estate Planning
Probate: What It Is & How To Avoid It—Part 2

Unless you’ve created an estate plan that works to keep your family out of court, when you die (or become...

Asset Protection, Family Financial Planning, Estate Planning
Probate: What It Is & How To Avoid It—Part 1

Unless you’ve created a proper estate plan, when you die many of your assets must first pass through the ...

Asset Protection, Life Planning, Estate Planning
Protect Your Home, Family, and Assets From The Threat Of Natural Disasters

Over just the last two years, we’ve seen historic levels of damage caused by natural disasters in the U.S...

Clarifying Questions
Q&A How can I determine how much life insurance I should have?

Q & A: Q: How can I determine how much life insurance I should have? —Family Planner ANSWER A: Dear P...

Kids Protection Planning, Life Planning, Estate Planning
What To Expect From Your Initial Meeting With A Personal Family Lawyer®

Whether you’ve met with an estate planning lawyer before or it’s your first time, it’s important to under...

Asset Protection, Family Financial Planning, Life Planning, Estate Planning
4 Reasons Why Estate Planning Is So Essential For Business Owners

If you are running a business, it’s easy to give estate planning less priority than your other business m...

Asset Protection, Enlightened Insurance, Family Financial Planning, Estate Planning
Purchasing Life Insurance For Your Family: What You Need To Know

Life insurance is a key component of your family’s estate plan, offering those who depend on you for thei...

Kids Protection Planning, Awakened Parenting, Estate Planning
Don’t Leave Your Children With The Babysitter Until You Read This

As we head into the third year of the pandemic, we are coming to terms with just how fragile our lives an...

Life Planning
5 Ways DIY Estate Plans Can Fail & Leave Your Family At Risk—Part 2

Do a Google search for “digital wills” or “online estate planning,” and you’ll find dozens of different w...

Life Planning
5 Ways DIY Estate Plans Can Fail & Leave Your Family At Risk—Part 1

Do a Google search for “digital wills” or “online estate planning,” and you’ll find dozens of different w...

Life Planning
Preventing Family Conflict And Disputes Over Your Estate Plan

No matter how well you think you know your loved ones, it’s impossible to predict exactly how they’ll beh...

Awakened Parenting, Life Planning, wills and trusts
One of The Greatest Gifts To Your Family Is The Plan For Incapacity

When it comes to estate planning, most people automatically think about taking legal steps to ensure the ...

Asset Protection, Life Planning, wills and trusts, Estate Planning
Why Putting Your Family Home In A Trust Is A Smart Move—Part 2

This article is part two of a two-part series on the benefits of putting your home in a trust. Part one o...

Kids Protection Planning, Planning for Seniors, Estate Planning
How to Pass Down Your Family Wealth Legacy During The Holidays

As you likely already know, but may not have given much thought about, the most important inheritance you...

Asset Protection, Family Financial Planning, wills and trusts
Why Putting Your Family Home In A Trust Is A Smart Move—Part 1

If you are like many homeowners, your home is likely your family’s most valuable and treasured asset. In ...

Asset Protection, Family Financial Planning
The Basics On NFTs: The Newest Cryptoverse Craze

NFTs, or “non-fungible tokens,” are the latest sensation in the cryptocurrency universe, or as we like to...

Clarifying Questions
Q&A: How does buying or selling a business affect my estate plan?

Q: How does buying or selling a business affect my estate plan? --Business Buyer ANSWER Dear Buyer: If yo...

Enlightened Insurance, Caring for Elderly Parents, Life Planning, Planning for Seniors, Estate Planning
FAQs About Long-Term Care Insurance

Our nation’s population is aging at a faster rate than ever before, and collectively we are living much l...

Life Planning, wills and trusts, Estate Planning
10 Things You Should Know About Living Wills

When it comes to estate planning, you’ve most likely heard people mention a couple of different types of ...

Kids Protection Planning, Life Planning, wills and trusts, Estate Planning
Think You Are Too Young to Need An Estate Plan? Think Again.

The pandemic has caused Americans to change their behavior in a number of different ways, and one of the ...

Clarifying Questions
Q&A: How does the proposed tax bill affect federal estate and gift tax?

Q: How does the Democrat’s newly proposed tax bill affect the federal estate and gift tax exclusion? -Con...

Asset Protection, Kids Protection Planning, Life Planning, Estate Planning
2021 Estate Planning Checkup: Is Your Estate Plan Up to Date?

Even if you put a totally solid estate plan in place, it can turn out to be worthless for the people you ...

Awakened Parenting, Life Planning, Blended Family Issues, Estate Planning
How Estate Planning Can Bring Blended Families Closer

Yours, mine and ours … in today’s modern family, it’s oh so common. The blended family is the product of ...

Asset Protection, Family Financial Planning, wills and trusts
Why You Need a Trust - Even if You Aren't Rich

When you hear the words, “trust fund,” do you conjure up images of stately mansions and party yachts? A t...

wills and trusts, Save Money On Your Taxes, Estate Planning
With Tax Laws in Flux: What Should You Do Now?

On September 13, 2021, Democrats in the House of Representatives released a new $3.5 trillion proposed sp...

wills and trusts, Save Money On Your Taxes, Estate Planning
Proposed Changes To Tax Laws That Will Impact Estate Planning—Part 1

On September 13, 2021, Democrats in the House of Representatives released a new $3.5 trillion proposed sp...

Clarifying Questions
Q&A: How does the administration of a will work?

Q: How does the administration of a will work? -Family Planner ANSWER Dear Planner: In order for assets i...

Celebrity Estate Planning, Estate Planning Mistakes, Family Financial Planning, wills and trusts
A Not-So-Happy Accident: Bob Ross’s Estate Planning Failures —Part 2

As the host of the wildly popular The Joy of Painting TV series on PBS, Bob Ross became a pop-culture ico...

Celebrity Estate Planning, Estate Planning Mistakes, Family Financial Planning, wills and trusts
A Not-So-Happy Accident: Bob Ross’s Estate Planning Failures —Part 1

As the host of the wildly popular The Joy of Painting TV series on PBS, Bob Ross became a pop-culture ico...

Estate Planning Mistakes, Kids Protection Planning, Awakened Parenting, Life Planning, Estate Planning
Estate Planning Must-Haves For Single Parents

If you are a single parent, life for you right now probably couldn’t get any busier. You are likely being...

Asset Protection, Family Financial Planning, Save Money On Your Taxes
3 Ways To Benefit By Incorporating Charitable Giving Into Your Estate Plan

You are likely well aware of the tax benefits that come from donating to charity during your lifetime—don...

Clarifying Questions
Q&A: What is a pet trust, and how does it work?

Q: What is a pet trust, and how does it work? -Doggy Daddy ANSWER A: Dear Doggy, While it’s possible to n...

Estate Planning Mistakes, wills and trusts, Estate Planning
Estate Planning 101: Wills vs. Trusts

Wills and trusts are two of the most commonly used estate planning documents, and they form the foundatio...

Celebrity Estate Planning, Estate Planning Mistakes, Family Financial Planning
Legendary Rapper DMX Dies With No Will, Millions in Debt, and 15 Children—Part 2

Legendary hip hop artist DMX—born Earl Simmons—passed away on April 9 at age 50 after suffering a massive...

Celebrity Estate Planning, Estate Planning Mistakes, Family Financial Planning
Legendary Rapper DMX Dies With No Will, Millions in Debt, and 15 Children—Part 1

Legendary hip hop artist DMX—born Earl Simmons—passed away on April 9 at age 50 after suffering a massive...

Estate Planning Mistakes, Planning for Your Pets, Estate Planning
Don't Forget To Protect Your Furry Family: Estate Planning For Your Pets

It’s sad but true that many pets end up in shelters after their owner dies or becomes incapacitated. In f...

Clarifying Questions
Q&A: How should I include my cryptocurrency in my estate plan?

Q: How should I include my cryptocurrency in my estate plan? -Digital Planner ANSWER A: Dear Digital, Jus...

Asset Protection, Life Planning, Estate Planning
All You Need to Know About Including Digital Assets In Your Estate Plan—Part 2

Recent advances in digital technology have made many aspects of our lives exponentially easier and more c...

Asset Protection, Life Planning, Estate Planning
All You Need to Know About Including Digital Assets In Your Estate Plan—Part 1

Recent advances in digital technology have made many aspects of our lives exponentially easier and more c...

Celebrity Estate Planning, Caring for Elderly Parents, Life Planning
Britney Spears’ Conservatorship: The Vital Importance Of Incapacity Planning—Part 2

Since the age of 16, when she burst onto the charts with her debut single, “...Hit Me Baby One More Time,...

Celebrity Estate Planning, Caring for Elderly Parents, Life Planning
Britney Spears’ Conservatorship: The Vital Importance Of Incapacity Planning—Part 1

Since the age of 16, when she burst onto the charts with her debut single, “...Hit Me Baby One More Time,...

Estate Planning Mistakes, Kids Protection Planning, Awakened Parenting, Family Financial Planning, Estate Planning
Estate Planning For A Child With Special Needs: What Parents Need To Know

Estate planning is an obvious concern for all parents, but if you have a child with special needs, it’s c...

Clarifying Questions
Q&A: Can I leave my 401(k) to my minor children when I die?

Q: Can I leave my 401(k) to my minor children when I die? -Pondering Parent ANSWER A: Dear Pondering, Tho...

Kids Protection Planning, Awakened Parenting, Same Gender Couples, Estate Planning
3 Estate Planning Issues For LGBTQ Couples—Part 2

Whether you are married or not, if you are involved in a committed partnership with another individual, e...

Asset Protection, Kids Protection Planning, Same Gender Couples, Estate Planning
3 Estate Planning Issues For LGBTQ+ Couples—Part 1

Whether you are married or in a committed partnership, estate planning is about much more than planning f...

Awakened Parenting, Life Planning, Planning for Seniors, Estate Planning
The Perfect Father’s Day Gift for Every Father

When you are a kid, finding a suitable gift for Father’s Day can be a struggle. You want to get Dad somet...

Awakened Parenting, Life Planning, Estate Planning
3 Vital Estate Planning Documents For High School Graduates

With the arrival of summer, young people across the country are about to reach a key milestone: high scho...

Clarifying Questions
Q&A: Should I leave money for my child with special needs in my will?

Q: Should I leave money for my child with special needs in my will? – Prudent Parent ANSWER A: Dear Prude...

Estate Planning Mistakes, Life Planning, Same Gender Couples, Blended Family Issues, Estate Planning
Just Married? 6 Estate Planning Essentials for Newlyweds—Part 2

As we head into the peak of wedding season, if you are a newlywed or are about to tie the knot, add “esta...

Estate Planning Mistakes, Life Planning, Same Gender Couples, Blended Family Issues, Estate Planning
Just Married? 6 Estate Planning Essentials for Newlyweds—Part 1

As we head into the peak of wedding season, if you are a newlywed or are about to tie the knot, add “esta...

Celebrity Estate Planning, Estate Planning Mistakes, Blended Family Issues
Aretha Franklin’s Estate Planning Haunts Her Family —Part 2

Nearly three years have passed since Aretha Franklin, known as the “Queen of Soul,” died from pancreatic ...

Kids Protection Planning, Awakened Parenting, Life Planning
Looking for the Best Mother’s Day Gift Ever? Try The Kids Protection Plan

Although we initially planned to run part two of last week’s post on Aretha Franklin’s failed estate plan...

Life Planning, wills and trusts, Estate Planning
Consider This Before You Create Your Will Online

A last will and testament is the most commonly thought-of document when it comes to an estate plan. But r...

Clarifying Questions
How can I avoid being placed under a professional guardian?

Q: How can I avoid being placed under the care of a professional guardian? —Senior Planner A: Dear Planne...

Celebrity Estate Planning, Estate Planning Mistakes, Blended Family Issues
Aretha Franklin’s Estate Planning Haunts Her Family —Part 1

Nearly three years have passed since Aretha Franklin, known as the “Queen of Soul,” died from pancreatic ...

Caring for Elderly Parents, Planning for Seniors, Estate Planning
Legal Gangsters: I Care a Lot Uncovers the Dark Side of Legal Guardianship—Part 2

The Netflix movie I Care a Lot provides a dark, violent, and somewhat comedic take on the real life and n...

Caring for Elderly Parents, Planning for Seniors, Estate Planning
Legal Gangsters: I Care a Lot Uncovers the Dark Side of Guardianship - Part 1

The Netflix movie I Care a Lot provides a dark, violent, and somewhat comedic take on the real life and n...

Family Financial Planning, Life Planning, Save Money On Your Taxes
6 Ways The American Rescue Plan Can Boost Your Family’s Finances—Part 2

Signed into law on March 11th, President Biden’s $1.9 trillion American Rescue Plan Act of 2021 (ARP) is ...

Family Financial Planning, Life Planning, Save Money On Your Taxes
6 Ways The American Rescue Plan Can Boost Your Family’s Finances - Part 1

Signed into law on March 11th, President Biden’s $1.9 trillion American Rescue Plan Act of 2021 (ARP) is ...

Clarifying Questions
What estate planning documents should my son, who just turned 18, have in place?

Q: What estate planning documents should my son, who just turned 18 and is planning to attend college in ...

Family Financial Planning, Planning for Seniors, Save Money On Your Taxes
7 Ways To Save Big Money On Your 2020 Taxes—Part 2

2020 was a nightmarish year for many families. But thanks to recent legislation, you could see a silver l...

Family Financial Planning, Planning for Seniors, Save Money On Your Taxes
7 Ways To Save Big Money On Your 2020 Taxes—Part 1

2020 was a nightmarish year for many families. But thanks to recent legislation, you could see a silver l...

Kids Protection Planning, Awakened Parenting, Life Planning
Managing Child Care While Dealing With Illness: Tips For Parents—Part 2

Even though there are now vaccines for the pandemic and the number of new cases is on the decline, becomi...

Kids Protection Planning, Awakened Parenting, Life Planning
Managing Child Care While Dealing With COVID-19: Tips For Single Parents - Part 1

Even though there are now vaccines for COVID-19 and the number of new cases is on the decline, becoming i...

Clarifying Questions
Do I need to create a new will if I move to another state?

Q: Do I need to create a new will if I move to another state? -Curious Mover A: Dear Curious: Most states...

Celebrity Estate Planning, Blended Family Issues, Conscious Divorce
Larry King’s Death Highlights Importance of Updating Your Estate Plan—Part 2

Legendary TV and radio host, Larry King, died at Cedars-Sinai Medical Center in Los Angeles on January 23...

Celebrity Estate Planning, Blended Family Issues, Conscious Divorce
Larry King’s Death Highlights Importance of Updating Your Estate Plan—Part 1

Legendary TV and radio host, Larry King, died at Cedars-Sinai Medical Center in Los Angeles on January 23...

Life Planning, Estate Planning
Managing Your Digital Afterlife: A Guide To Facebook’s Legacy Contact

If you use Facebook to share, track, and report on important life events, it can provide an intimate snap...

Enlightened Insurance, Family Financial Planning, Estate Planning
New Developments Transform the Role Life Insurance Plays in Your Planning

Within the past year, a combination of new legislation and the recent change of leadership in the White H...

Clarifying Questions
How can I obtain consent for my incapacitated mother to get a vaccination?

Q: How can I obtain consent for my incapacitated mother to get a COVID-19 vaccination? -Concerned Daughte...

Asset Protection, Estate Planning
Does Your Estate Plan Protect Your Intellectual Property?

If you own a business, you almost certainly have intellectual property. However, because your intellectua...

Life Planning, Estate Planning
Moving To A New State? Remember to Update Your Estate Plan

Although you likely won’t need to have an entirely new estate plan prepared for you, upon relocating to a...

Caring for Elderly Parents, Awakened Parenting, Planning for Seniors
5 Tips For Keeping Kids Connected With Grandparents During the Pandemic

While the quarantines, shutdowns, and social distancing measures related to the pandemic have been diffic...

Enlightened Insurance, Caring for Elderly Parents, Planning for Seniors
What You Should Know About Long-Term Care Insurance

With people living longer than ever before, more and more seniors require long-term healthcare services i...

Celebrity Estate Planning, Estate Planning Mistakes, wills and trusts
Former Zappos CEO Tony Hsieh Dies Without A Will—Part 2

Last week in part one of this series, we discussed how Tony Hsieh became an Internet pioneer, starting tw...

Clarifying Questions
Can I serve as a trustee if I don’t have any legal experience?

Q: Can I serve as a trustee if I don’t have any legal experience? -Curious Cousin A: Dear Curious: Being ...

Celebrity Estate Planning, Estate Planning Mistakes, wills and trusts
Former Zappos CEO Tony Hsieh Dies Without A Will—Part 1

On November 27th, nine days after being pulled unconscious from a house fire in a beachfront home in New ...

Family Financial Planning, Life Planning, Estate Planning
4 Tips For Talking About Estate Planning With Your Family Over the Holidays

With COVID-19 still raging, your 2020 holiday season may not feature the big family get-togethers of year...

Life Planning, Estate Planning
5 Questions To Ask Before Hiring An Estate Planning Lawyer—Part 2

Since you’ll be discussing topics like death, incapacity, and other frightening life events, hiring an es...

Life Planning, Estate Planning
5 Questions To Ask Before Hiring An Estate Planning Lawyer—Part 1

Since you’ll be discussing topics like death, incapacity, and other frightening life events, hiring an es...

Clarifying Questions
What is the best way to bring up estate planning with my family over the holidays?

Q: What is the best way to bring up estate planning with my family over the holidays? -Festive Father A: ...

Family Financial Planning, Planning for Seniors, Blended Family Issues
Remarrying In Midlife? Avoid Accidently Disinheriting Your Loved Ones

Today, we’re seeing more and more people getting divorced in middle age and beyond. Indeed, the trend of ...

Planning for Your Pets, wills and trusts, Estate Planning
6 Things You Should NOT Include In Your Will

A will is one of the most basic estate planning tools. While relying solely on a will is rarely a suitabl...

Asset Protection, Conscious Divorce, Estate Planning
Getting Divorced? Don’t Overlook These 4 Updates to Your Estate Plan—Part 2

Going through divorce can be an overwhelming experience that impacts nearly every facet of your life, inc...

Asset Protection, Conscious Divorce, Estate Planning
Getting Divorced? Don’t Overlook These 4 Updates to Your Estate Plan—Part 1

Going through divorce can be an overwhelming experience that impacts nearly every facet of your life, inc...

Estate Planning Mistakes, wills and trusts, Estate Planning
Will Your Estate Plan Actually Work When Your Family Needs It?

November 6, 2020 is “National Love Your Lawyer Day,” which started in 2001 as a way to celebrate lawyers ...

Clarifying Questions
If Democrats sweep the election, what’s likely to happen to the increased gift and estate tax exemption passed under Trump’s tax cuts?

Q: If Democrats sweep the election, what’s likely to happen to the increased gift and estate tax exemptio...

Celebrity Estate Planning, Estate Planning Mistakes, wills and trusts
Black Panther Star Chadwick Boseman Dies Without A Will—Part 2

On October 15th, nearly two months after the death of Black Panther star Chadwick Boseman, his wife, Tayl...

Celebrity Estate Planning, Estate Planning Mistakes, wills and trusts
Black Panther Star Chadwick Boseman Dies Without A Will—Part 1

On October 15th, nearly two months after the death of Black Panther star Chadwick Boseman, his wife, Tayl...

Asset Protection, Kids Protection Planning, Estate Planning
4 Reasons Why You Can’t Afford to Go Without An Estate Plan

October 19th-25th, 2020 is National Estate Planning Awareness Week, so if you've been thinking about crea...

Family Financial Planning, Save Money On Your Taxes, Estate Planning
Start Planning Now to Prepare Your Estate for a Possible Democratic Sweep—Part 2

No matter who you vote for on November 3rd, you may want to start considering the potential legal, financ...

Family Financial Planning, Save Money On Your Taxes, Estate Planning
Start Planning Now to Prepare Your Estate for a Possible Democratic Sweep—Part 1

No matter who you are voting for on November 3rd, you may want to start considering the potential legal, ...

Caring for Elderly Parents, Planning for Seniors, wills and trusts, Estate Planning
What You Should Know Before Agreeing to Serve as Trustee

Being asked by a loved one to serve as trustee for their trust upon their death can be quite an honor, bu...

Clarifying Questions
How are decisions made for an incapacitated person without a living will?

Q: How are decisions made for an incapacitated person without a living will? --Concerned family member A:...

Family Financial Planning, Planning for Seniors, Save Money On Your Taxes
6 Changes to Watch For In Your 2020 Taxes

Although you may have just filed your 2019 income taxes in July, now is the time to start thinking about ...

Awakened Parenting, Life Planning, Estate Planning
Once Your Kids Are 18, Make Sure They Sign These Documents

While estate planning is probably one of the last things your teenage kids are thinking about, given the ...

Asset Protection, Family Financial Planning, Estate Planning
Lost An Old 401(k)? Here Are 6 Tips For Finding It

The days of working for a single employer for decades until you retire are over. Today, you are much more...

Enlightened Insurance, Life Planning, Estate Planning
The Need For a Go-Bag Is Even More Important During a Pandemic

In response to a series of wildfires that ravaged Southern California in 2017, we wrote a previous articl...

Clarifying Questions
What is the Best Way to Save for My Child's College Education?

Q: What is the Best Way to Save for My Child's College Education? --Concerned Parent A: Dear Concerned: O...

Kids Protection Planning, Same Gender Couples, Estate Planning
Supreme Court Case Could Impact LGBTQ Adoption, But There Are Alternatives

A case on the Supreme Court’s docket for October could have a major impact on the parental rights of same...

Asset Protection, Celebrity Estate Planning, Estate Planning Mistakes
What the Netflix Series Tiger King Can Teach You About Asset Protection -Part 3

Anyone who has seen the hit Netflix documentary Tiger King: Murder, Mayhem, and Madness can attest that i...

Celebrity Estate Planning, Estate Planning Mistakes, wills and trusts
What the Netflix Series Tiger King Can Teach You About Estate Planning-Part 2

Anyone who has seen the hit Netflix documentary Tiger King: Murder, Mayhem, and Madness can attest that i...

Celebrity Estate Planning, Estate Planning Mistakes, Blended Family Issues
What the Netflix Series Tiger King Can Teach You About Estate Planning-Part 1

Anyone who has seen the hit Netflix documentary Tiger King: Murder, Mayhem, and Madness can attest that i...

Clarifying Questions
What Property Can I Put In My Living Trust?

Q: What Property Can I Put In My Living Trust? - Planning For the Future A: Dear Planning: A living trust...

Asset Protection, wills and trusts, Conscious Divorce
How to Avoid the Need For a Prenuptial Agreement—Part 2

If you are engaged to be married, divorce is probably the last thing you and your fiancé want to be think...

Asset Protection, Family Financial Planning, Conscious Divorce
How to Avoid the Need For a Prenuptial Agreement—Part 1

If you’re counting down the days to your wedding, divorce is probably the last thing you and your fiancé ...

Caring for Elderly Parents, Life Planning, Estate Planning
COVID-19 Highlights Critical Need for Advance Healthcare Directives—Part 2

In the first part of this series, we discussed the vital importance of having updated advance directives ...

Caring for Elderly Parents, Life Planning, Estate Planning
COVID-19 Highlights Critical Need for Advance Healthcare Directives—Part 1

As the COVID-19 pandemic continues to ravage the country, doctors across the nation are joining lawyers i...

Celebrity Estate Planning, Estate Planning Mistakes, Estate Planning
A Tragic Oversight: Kobe Bryant’s Youngest Mistakenly Left Out of Family Trust

In January, we reported how the deaths of NBA legend Kobe Bryant (Kobe) and his 13-year-old daughter, Gia...

Clarifying Questions
How Long Does an Executor Have to Distribute Assets From a Will?

Q: How Long Does an Executor Have to Distribute Assets From a Will? - Watching and Waiting A: Dear Waitin...

Estate Planning Mistakes, Blended Family Issues, Estate Planning
Your “Blended” Family Is Likely Headed to Court Unless You Do This

If you have a blended family and do not plan for what happens to your assets in the event of your incapac...

wills and trusts, Save Money On Your Taxes
How Do Trusts Help You Save on Taxes?

Many people come to us curious (or confused) about trusts and taxes. So today’s article is going to sort ...

Family Financial Planning, Life Planning
Is It Time to Go Solo(preneur)?

There’s nothing like a major change in the economic climate to make you rethink your day job. “Business a...

Family Financial Planning, Life Planning
Learning to Flourish, Even in a Financial Crisis

Maybe you, like many of us, have been raised to think that the safest way to live in the working world is...

Clarifying Questions
My dad recently passed and did not have a will, what should I do?

Q: My dad recently passed and did not have a will, what should I do? - Feeling Lost A: Dear Lost: First, ...

Enlightened Insurance, Family Financial Planning, Life Planning
The Basics of Disability Insurance and How It Can Help During COVID

With the risks still posed by COVID-19, we all need to face the possibility that we could get sick, even ...

Kids Protection Planning, Awakened Parenting, Life Planning
Who Would Care For Your Children If You Got Sick With COVID-19?

The pandemic is causing us to consider a lot of things that we may not have before, even if maybe we shou...

Kids Protection Planning, Awakened Parenting
3 Unique Ways to Handle the Guilt Inherent to Being a Parent

If you’re a parent, you may feel even more guilty than usual. If so, you are definitely not alone. Curren...

Estate Planning Mistakes, wills and trusts, Estate Planning
Getting Legal Documents Signed During COVID -- A Reason To Not Go It Alone

Wills, trusts, health care directives, powers of attorney, and legal guardian nominations are on many of ...

Caring for Elderly Parents, Planning for Seniors
Protecting Your Parents From Undue Influence During Covid and Beyond

In a previous article, we shared steps to understanding your parents’ estate planning and the nature of t...

Clarifying Questions
What is the Difference Between Living Will and Medical POA?

Q: What’s the difference between a Living Will and a Medical POA? - Thinking Ahead A: Dear Thinking: A Li...

Caring for Elderly Parents, Family Financial Planning
Should You (or Your Parents) Be in the Stock Market Now?

If you or your parents have a retirement account, (or any investment accounts for that matter) now is the...

Estate Planning Mistakes, wills and trusts, Estate Planning
Online Wills? When You Should, When You Shouldn't and Where to Do It

With all of the media about “digital wills” and “online estate planning” it could be tempting to think yo...

Kids Protection Planning, Estate Planning
A Map to Doing the Right Thing for the People You Love During COVID-19

Right now, huge numbers of people are coming face to face with their own mortality, and realizing they ne...

Family Financial Planning, Life Planning
How To Get Access to Your COVID Stimulus Money

It’s the beginning of the month, and bills are coming due. If you are stressed out, it’s important that y...

Clarifying Questions
I want my child to own my house when I die. Should I just transfer it now?

Q: I want my child to own my house when I die. Should I just transfer it now? - Pondering Parent A: Dear,...

Caring for Elderly Parents, Family Financial Planning, Estate Planning
The Most Important Legal and Financial Actions To Take Right Now

As you already know, the COVID-19 pandemic means nothing is business as usual. Many states have implement...

Caring for Elderly Parents, Planning for Seniors
How To Talk To Your Parents and Get Them To Stay Home

There’s no doubt that your parents have survived frightening world events, whether that was World War II,...

Planning for Seniors, Estate Planning
Are You Clear About How Your Parents Estate Plan Will Impact You?

Do your parents have an estate plan? Is it up to date? No matter how rich or poor you or your parents are...

Estate Planning Mistakes, Planning for Your Pets, wills and trusts
How to Plan a “Pet Trust” to Protect Your Pet After Your Death

In my previous article, I talked about what to take into consideration when you’re planning for your pet’...

Clarifying Questions
Could I face eviction due to an out of date Will?

Q: Could I face eviction due to an out of date Will? -Renting Beneficiary A: Dear, Renting: It’s critical...

Kids Protection Planning, Life Planning
CORONAVIRUS: Impact to Your Wealth, Health and Happiness

While it’s still hard to tell how the Coronavirus will impact us in the long term, it’s become a subject ...

Family Financial Planning, Planning for Your Pets, Estate Planning
What Happens to Your Pets When You Die?

If you have pets, my guess is that you love them as much as you do your children, but I’m also guessing t...

Awakened Parenting, Family Financial Planning
Money Talk: How Much Will You Share With Your Kids (and When)?

In many families, money still is not a typical dinner table discussion, but we think it should be. Surpri...

Estate Planning Mistakes, wills and trusts, Estate Planning
False Security: Is Your Will Legally Valid?

A last will and testament can ensure your wishes are respected when you die. But if your will isn’t legal...

Clarifying Questions
Under what circumstances can my will be contested?

Q: Under what circumstances can my will be contested? -Will Creator A: Dear Will: Anyone can contest a wi...

Celebrity Estate Planning, Life Planning, Estate Planning
Kobe Bryant's Death Highlights Need for Estate Planning

As you no doubt already know, on January 26, 2020, basketball legend Kobe Bryant was killed in a helicopt...

Life Planning, wills and trusts, Estate Planning
4 Things Trusts Can Do That Wills Can’t

Both wills and trusts are estate planning documents that can be used to pass your wealth and property to ...

Asset Protection, Family Financial Planning, Save Money On Your Taxes
The SECURE Act’s Impact On Estate and Retirement Planning—Part 2

In the first part of this series, we discussed the potential ramifications the SECURE ACT has for your es...

Asset Protection, Family Financial Planning, Save Money On Your Taxes
The SECURE Act’s Impact On Estate and Retirement Planning—Part 1

On January 1, 2020, the Setting Every Community Up for Retirement Enhancement Act (SECURE Act) went into ...

Family Financial Planning, Conscious Divorce, Save Money On Your Taxes
The Tax Cut & Jobs Act Drastically Alters the Tax Consequences of Divorce

The Tax Cuts & Jobs Act (TCJA) made sweeping changes to exemptions, deductions, and credits for your ...

Clarifying Questions
How often should I update my estate plan?

Q: How often should I update my estate plan? -Prudent planner A: Dear Prudent: This question highlights a...

Enlightened Insurance, Life Planning, Estate Planning
Avoid These 4 Mistakes When Naming Life Insurance Beneficiaries

Investing in life insurance is a foundational part of estate planning. However, when naming your policy’s...

Caring for Elderly Parents, Life Planning, Planning for Seniors
Don’t Let Diminished Financial Capacity Put Your Elderly Loved Ones At Risk—Part 2

In the first part of this series, we discussed the early warning signs of diminished financial capacity i...

Caring for Elderly Parents, Life Planning, Planning for Seniors
Don’t Let Diminished Financial Capacity Put Your Elderly Loved Ones At Risk—Part 1

With more and more Baby Boomers reaching retirement age each year, our country is undergoing an unprecede...

Asset Protection, Life Planning, Estate Planning
5 Steps For Adding Digital Assets To Your Estate Plan

Although digital technology has made many aspects of our lives much easier and more convenient, it has al...

Clarifying Questions
Do I need additional life insurance if I have a policy through my employer?

Q: Do I need additional life insurance if I already have a policy through my employer? -Insurance Enquiry...

Family Financial Planning, Blended Family Issues, Estate Planning
4 Tips For Discussing Estate Planning With Your Family This Holiday Season

As we head into the peak of the holiday season, you’re likely spending more time than usual surrounded by...

Awakened Parenting, Life Planning, Estate Planning
Don’t Let Your Kids Move Out Without Signing These Documents

Watching your kids leave home to attend college or start their career can be an emotional time for you as...

Estate Planning Mistakes, Kids Protection Planning, Estate Planning
Buyer Beware: The Hidden Dangers of DIY Estate Planning—Part 2

Last week, we shared the first part of this series on the dangers of do-it-yourself estate planning. Here...

Estate Planning Mistakes, Blended Family Issues, Estate Planning
Buyer Beware: The Hidden Dangers of DIY Estate Planning—Part 1

Do a Google search for “online estate planning documents,” and you’ll find dozens of different websites. ...

Clarifying Questions
Can I use estate planning to provide for my pet’s care after my death?

Q: Can I use estate planning to provide for my pet’s care after my death? -Dog Lover A: Dear Lover: Yes, ...

Family Financial Planning, Life Planning, Save Money On Your Taxes
4 Year-End Tax-Saving Strategies for 2019

As we head towards the end of the year, we’re fast approaching the deadline to implement your family’s ta...

Asset Protection, Awakened Parenting, Estate Planning
Lifetime Asset Protection Trusts: Airtight Protection For Your Child’s Inheritance - 2

In the first part of this series, we discussed a unique planning tool known as a Lifetime Asset Protectio...

Asset Protection, Awakened Parenting, Estate Planning
Lifetime Asset Protection Trusts: Airtight Protection For Your Child’s Inheritance

As a parent, you’re likely hoping to leave your children an inheritance. In fact, doing so may be one of ...

Enlightened Insurance, Family Financial Planning, Life Planning
Understanding Your Life Insurance Settlement Options

Following the death of the policy holder, the way in which proceeds from a life insurance policy are paid...

Celebrity Estate Planning, Estate Planning Mistakes, Kids Protection Planning
Who Will Be Emani’s Legal Guardian After the Death of Her Dad?

In the aftermath of rapper Nipsey Hussle’s murder this March, his family and ex-girlfriend have been lock...

Clarifying Questions
What does an executor do?

Q: What does an executor do? -Will writer A: Dear Will: An executor is the person named in your will to a...

Awakened Parenting, Same Gender Couples, Estate Planning
Is Platonic or Co-Parenting Right For You?

With societal attitudes about love, marriage, and parenting constantly evolving, our perception of what c...

Awakened Parenting, Life Planning, Estate Planning
Use Estate Planning to Ensure Your Legacy Doesn’t Get Erased

When you think about those loved ones who’ve passed away, you probably don’t think very much—or even at a...

Caring for Elderly Parents, Planning for Seniors, Estate Planning
Use Estate Planning to Avoid Adult Guardianship—and Elder Abuse: Part 2

In the first part of this series, we discussed how some professional adult guardians have used their powe...

Caring for Elderly Parents, Life Planning, Planning for Seniors
Use Estate Planning to Avoid Adult Guardianship—and Elder Abuse

Elder abuse can take a wide variety of forms, but we think the worst of the worst is caused by unscrupulo...

Clarifying Questions
What does “funding” a trust mean?

Q: What does “funding” a trust mean? -Curious planner A: Dear Curious: For a living trust to function pro...

Estate Planning Mistakes, Same Gender Couples, Estate Planning
Estate Planning Concerns For Married, Same-Gender Couples

Now that same-gender couples can legally marry in all 50 states, more Americans than ever before are enjo...

Planning for Your Pets, wills and trusts, Estate Planning
Why A Will Is Not A Suitable Option For Protecting Your Pet

These days, lots of people consider their pets to be members of their family. Indeed, pets can become our...

Awakened Parenting, Family Financial Planning, Planning for Seniors
How Will The Coming Wealth Transfer Affect Your Family?

Whether it’s called “The Great Wealth Transfer,” “The Silver Tsunami,” or some other catchy-sounding name...

Kids Protection Planning, Life Planning, Estate Planning
Why You Need To Add a ‘When I Die’ File to Your Estate Plan

If you were to suddenly die today, would your loved ones know how to quickly find your estate planning do...

Estate Planning Mistakes, wills and trusts, Estate Planning
The Real Cost To Your Family of Failed Estate Planning: Not Updating Your Plan

This is the fourth in an ongoing series of NLBM articles discussing the true costs and consequences of fa...

Clarifying Questions
If I die with no estate plan at all, what happens to my property?

Q: If I die with no estate plan at all, what happens to my property? -No Plan Stan A: Dear Stan: If you d...

Estate Planning Mistakes, Kids Protection Planning, Estate Planning
The Real Cost To Your Family: Having No Estate Plan At All

This is the third in an ongoing series of NLBM articles discussing the true costs and consequences of fai...

Asset Protection, Family Financial Planning, Life Planning, wills and trusts, Estate Planning
Safeguard Your Children's Inheritance With a Lifetime Asset Protection Trust

Last week, we discussed the benefits of a unique estate planning vehicle known as Lifetime Asset Protecti...

Asset Protection, Celebrity Estate Planning, Awakened Parenting, wills and trusts
Lifetime Asset Protection Trusts Can Protect Your Family From Wealth's Dark Side

When you create your estate plan, the idea that one of your adult children would ever use their inheritan...

Caring for Elderly Parents, Awakened Parenting, Life Planning
7 Processes to Complete With Your Parents Before They Die

In a recent Facebook post “Processes to go through with your parents before they die,” Daniel Schmachtenb...

Clarifying Questions
Can I change my estate plan while my divorce is still ongoing?

Q: Can I change my estate plan while my divorce is still ongoing? -Speculative spouse A: Dear Speculative...

Caring for Elderly Parents, Family Financial Planning, Planning for Seniors
Seniors and Their Families Should Be Wary of Reverse Mortgages—Part 2

In the first part of this series, we discussed the dangers of reverse mortgages for senior homeowners. He...

Caring for Elderly Parents, Family Financial Planning, Planning for Seniors
Seniors and Their Families Should Be Wary of Reverse Mortgages

If you’ve watched TV lately, you’ve likely seen ads touting the benefits of reverse mortgages. The spots ...

Estate Planning Mistakes, Life Planning, wills and trusts
The Real Cost To Your Family: Relying On A Will Alone

This is the second in an ongoing series of NLBM articles discussing the true costs and consequences of fa...

wills and trusts, Blended Family Issues, Estate Planning
Avoid These 2 Common Causes For Dispute Over Your Estate Plan—Part 2

In the first part of this series, we discussed one of the most frequent causes for dispute over your esta...

Clarifying Questions
Are non-biological parents in same-gender marriage granted parental rights?

Q: Are non-biological parents in a same-gender marriage automatically granted legal parental rights? -Pon...

Estate Planning Mistakes, Life Planning, Estate Planning
Avoid These 2 Common Causes For Dispute Over Your Estate Plan—Part 1

No matter how well you think you know your loved ones, it’s impossible to predict exactly how they’ll beh...

Celebrity Estate Planning, wills and trusts, Blended Family Issues
Tom Petty's Daughters and Widow Locked In Bitter Battle Over His Estate

This week Tom Petty’s daughters escalated the battle over their late father’s estate by filing a lawsuit ...

Asset Protection, Enlightened Insurance, Family Financial Planning
4 Ways Wise Planning Can Protect Your Family’s Assets

While most people assume only the uber wealthy need to worry about asset protection, those with less weal...

Caring for Elderly Parents, Life Planning, Planning for Seniors
3 Warning Signs of a Financial Scam

Nobody likes to admit they’ve fallen for a financial scam, but the fact is, it’s easier than ever to get ...

Estate Planning Mistakes, Life Planning, Estate Planning
The Real Cost To Your Family: Not Planning For Incapacity

This is the first in an ongoing series of NLBM articles discussing the true costs and consequences of fai...

Clarifying Questions
We are expecting. What should be our top priority in terms of estate planning?

Q: My husband and I are expecting our first child in 7 months. What should be our top priority in terms o...

wills and trusts, Blended Family Issues, Conscious Divorce
5 Estate Planning Must-Dos if You’re Getting Divorced—Part 2

In the first part of this series, we discussed a couple of the most critical updates you must make to you...

Blended Family Issues, Conscious Divorce, Estate Planning
5 Estate Planning Must-Dos if You’re Getting Divorced—Part 1

Divorce can be traumatic for the whole family. Even if the process is amicable, it involves many tough de...

Estate Planning Mistakes, Kids Protection Planning, Estate Planning
4 Critical Estate Planning Tasks to Complete Before Going on Vacation

Going on vacation entails lots of planning: packing luggage, buying plane tickets, making hotel reservati...

Enlightened Insurance, Life Planning, Estate Planning
6 Questions to Consider When Selecting Life Insurance Beneficiaries—Part 2

In the first part of this series, we discussed the first three of six questions you should ask yourself w...

Clarifying Questions
Could my family benefit from a dynasty trust?

Q: Could my family benefit from a dynasty trust? -Frugal Father A: Dear Frugal: A dynasty trust is a spec...

Enlightened Insurance, Family Financial Planning, Life Planning, Estate Planning
6 Questions to Consider When Selecting Beneficiaries for a Life Insurance Policy

Selecting a beneficiary for your life insurance policy sounds pretty straightforward. You’re just decidin...

wills and trusts, Estate Planning
Understand What’s At Stake Before Agreeing to Serve as Trustee

Being asked by a family member or close friend to serve as trustee for their trust upon their death can b...

Celebrity Estate Planning, Life Planning, Estate Planning
Luke Perry’s Death Demonstrates the Importance of Planning for Incapacity

In late February, Luke Perry, who became famous starring in the 1990s TV series Beverly Hills 90210, suff...

Family Financial Planning, Save Money On Your Taxes
Why You Might Actually Owe Taxes in 2018

Like many taxpayers, if you’ve already filed your federal income taxes for 2018, you may be surprised to ...

Clarifying Questions
Can a spendthrift trust protect my child’s inheritance?

Q: Can a spendthrift trust protect my child’s inheritance? -Concerned Dad A: Dear Concerned: Yes, a so-ca...

Asset Protection, Life Planning, Estate Planning
7 Events That Necessitate a Review of Your Estate Plan

Even if you put a totally solid estate plan in place, it can end up proving worthless if it’s not properl...

Asset Protection, Family Financial Planning, wills and trusts
Could an IRA Trust Benefit Your Family?

Unlike most of your assets, individual retirement accounts (IRAs) do not pass to your family through a wi...

Estate Planning Mistakes, Family Financial Planning, Estate Planning
Overlooking This Basic Part of Your Estate Plan Can Be Tragic

The recent death of the CEO of QuadrigaCX, a major cryptocurrency exchange in Canada, demonstrates a basi...

Awakened Parenting, Life Planning
Reclaim Your Role as Your Child’s Primary Influence—Part 2

In the first part of this series, we discussed how today’s children are increasingly influenced more by t...

Clarifying Questions
Can I disinherit my husband to ensure my adult children will inherit all of my assets?

Q: Can I disinherit my husband with estate planning to ensure my adult children will inherit all of my as...

Awakened Parenting, Life Planning
Reclaim Your Role as Your Child’s Primary Influence—Part 1

Have you ever felt that the unbreakable bond you once had with your children is seriously eroding? It can...

Caring for Elderly Parents, Planning for Seniors
Don’t Let Your Elderly Parents Become Victims of the Grandparent Scam

Imagine this… You are an elderly grandparent who lives alone. You get a call in the middle of the night f...

Life Planning, Planning for Seniors, Estate Planning
Use Estate Planning to Ensure Your Family Isn’t Stuck Paying For Your Funeral

With the cost of a funeral averaging $7,000 and steadily increasing each year, every estate plan should i...

Same Gender Couples, wills and trusts, Estate Planning
4 Estate Planning Must-Haves for Unmarried Couples—Part 2

In the first part of this series, we discussed the estate planning tools all unmarried couples should hav...

Same Gender Couples, wills and trusts, Estate Planning
4 Estate Planning Must-Haves for Unmarried Couples—Part 1

Estate planning is often considered something you only need to worry about once you get married. But the ...

Clarifying Questions
What is a charitable remainder trust?

Q: What is a charitable remainder trust? -Curious Dear Curious: A charitable remainder trust (CRT) is a u...

Estate Planning Mistakes, Planning for Your Pets, Estate Planning
Pet Trusts Offer Protection for Your Furry Family

If you’re an animal lover and have a pet of your own, you likely consider your pet to be a member of the ...

Awakened Parenting, Life Planning, Estate Planning
4 Ways Estate Planning Can Improve Relationships with Loved Ones

With the holiday season here, you’re probably spending lots of time with your family and friends. During ...

Caring for Elderly Parents, Planning for Seniors, Estate Planning
Dementia and Guns: A Tragedy Waiting to Happen

It’s common for families of those with Alzheimer's and other forms of dementia to realize that at some po...

Asset Protection, Awakened Parenting, Life Planning
Saving What Matters: 12 Must-Have Items To Pack in Your Go-Bag

It’s the middle of the night. The authorities just notified you that you have 20 minutes to evacuate your...

Clarifying Questions
My father wants to quitclaim deed his house to me. Is this a good idea?

Q: My father wants to quitclaim deed his house to me before he dies, rather than include it in his will. ...

Asset Protection, Enlightened Insurance, Life Planning
Is Your Home Insured Against Natural Disasters?

From wildfires in California and hurricanes in Texas to floods in West Virginia, hardly any area of the U...

Asset Protection, wills and trusts, Estate Planning
Don’t Forget to Include Your Digital Assets In Your Estate Plan—Part 2

In the first part of this series, we discussed the importance of including your digital assets in your es...

Asset Protection, wills and trusts, Estate Planning
Don’t Forget to Include Your Digital Assets In Your Estate Plan—Part 1

If you’ve created an estate plan, it likely includes traditional wealth and assets like finances, real es...

Asset Protection, Family Financial Planning, Life Planning
How to Fix Errors in Your Credit Report

While some of those TV commercials for free credit-score report companies are pretty funny, having errors...

Awakened Parenting, Life Planning, Estate Planning
Use Estate Planning to Enrich Your Family With More Than Just Material Wealth

In the weeks before her death from ovarian cancer, author Amy Krouse Rosenthal gave her husband Jason one...

Clarifying Questions
My uncle died, and I think he had a will, but I’m not sure. How can I find out?

Q: My uncle died, and I think he had a will, but I’m not sure. How can I find out? -Will Wondering A: Dea...

Family Financial Planning, Planning for Seniors, Save Money On Your Taxes
3 Deadly Sins of Retirement Planning

Retirement planning is one of life’s most important financial goals. Indeed, funding retirement is one of...

Estate Planning Mistakes, Kids Protection Planning, wills and trusts
When Something is NOT Better Than Nothing—Part 2

Last week, we shared the first part of this series discussing the hidden dangers of do-it-yourself estate...

Estate Planning Mistakes, Kids Protection Planning, wills and trusts
When Something is NOT Better Than Nothing—Part 1

Go online, and you’ll find tons of websites offering do-it-yourself estate planning documents. Such forms...

Life Planning, Planning for Seniors, Estate Planning
To Live a Happier life, Start Thinking About Death Now

Want to know a proven way to live a more fulfilling life? All you have to do is fully accept the fact tha...

Clarifying Questions
Should I purchase an accidental death and dismemberment policy?

Q: I’m looking to buy insurance to protect my family. Should I purchase an accidental death and dismember...

Celebrity Estate Planning, Kids Protection Planning, Awakened Parenting
One Instance Where ‘Keeping Up With the Kardashians’ Might Be A Good Idea

You might not be a big fan of their typical life choices, but the Kardashians recently demonstrated impre...

Asset Protection, Enlightened Insurance, Life Planning
Questions and Answers About Personal Liability Umbrella Insurance

It’s no secret that we live in a litigious society. And though our right to a fair trial is one of the ha...

Estate Planning Mistakes, Life Planning, Estate Planning
What Happens to Your Facebook Account When You Die?

If you’re active on social media, Facebook probably plays a prominent role in your life. And now the soci...

Asset Protection, Estate Planning Mistakes, Save Money On Your Taxes
Don’t Transfer Ownership of Your House to Your Kids Before You Read This

With the cost of long-term care (LTC) skyrocketing, you may be concerned about your (or your elderly pare...

Clarifying Questions
Can I be paid for my duties as Financial Power of Attorney for my Mother?

Q: I have financial power of attorney for my mother. Can I be paid for managing her finances? -Billing Mo...

Celebrity Estate Planning, Estate Planning Mistakes, Estate Planning
Aretha Franklin Dies Without a Will

Aretha Franklin, heralded as the “Queen of Soul,” died from pancreatic cancer at age 76 on August 16th at...

Awakened Parenting, Blended Family Issues, Conscious Divorce
6 Key Steps For Conscious Co-Parenting: Part Two

Last week, we shared the first part of this series, discussing some of the key steps for conscious co-par...

Awakened Parenting, Blended Family Issues, Conscious Divorce
6 Key Steps For Conscious Co-Parenting: Part One

Committing to a conscious divorce means protecting your children from end-of-marriage related trauma. Whe...

Estate Planning Mistakes, Family Financial Planning, Save Money On Your Taxes
Avoid This Major Mistake When Adding an IRA to Your Estate Plan

Some people assume that because they’ve named a specific heir as the beneficiary of their IRA in their wi...

Kids Protection Planning, Awakened Parenting, Estate Planning
Do Your Homework to Ensure Your Kids Are Properly Cared For No Matter What

It’s back-to-school time again, and when it comes to estate planning you may have homework to do. As a pa...

Clarifying Questions
Who should I name as executor of my will?

Q: Who should I name as executor of my will? -Pondering probate A: Dear Pondering: Selecting the right ex...

Enlightened Insurance, Awakened Parenting, Life Planning
The Ins and Outs of Collecting Life Insurance Policy Proceeds

Unlike many estate assets, if you’re looking to collect the proceeds of a life insurance policy, the proc...

Life Planning, wills and trusts, Estate Planning
Trustees Should Carefully Consider the Role's Duties and Obligations—Part 2

Last week, we shared the first part of this series explaining the powers and duties that come with servin...

Family Financial Planning, Life Planning, wills and trusts, Estate Planning
Trustees Should Carefully Consider the Role's Duties and Obligations—Part 1

If a friend or family member has asked you to serve as trustee for their trust upon their death, you shou...

Asset Protection, Family Financial Planning, Save Money On Your Taxes
Donate to a Charitable Remainder Trust For Tax and Income Benefits

If you have highly appreciated assets like stock and real estate you want to sell, it may make sense to u...

Clarifying Questions
How can I best provide for my pet using estate planning?

Q: How can I best provide for my pet using estate planning? -Dog Lover A: Dear Lover: A beloved pet can b...

Estate Planning Mistakes, Kids Protection Planning, Awakened Parenting
Appoint a Guardian to Keep Your Kids In Safe Hands At All Times

Probably every parent who has watched the news lately has felt the heartbreak over what’s happening to im...

Kids Protection Planning, Awakened Parenting, wills and trusts
A Special Needs Trust Can Protect the Future of Your Child with Special Needs

It always surprises me to hear parents who have a child with special needs tell me that they were not awa...

Celebrity Estate Planning, Estate Planning Mistakes, Blended Family Issues
Thicke’s Estate Shows Importance of Properly Drafted and Updated Estate Plans

In the 1980s, the late actor Alan Thicke played the wise-but-hip father figure and psychiatrist Dr. Jason...

Caring for Elderly Parents, Life Planning, Estate Planning
Guardianship Questions—In Case A Parent or Loved One Becomes Incapacitated

Whether through illness, injury, or other means, anyone can require a guardian to become appointed if the...

Asset Protection, Family Financial Planning, Estate Planning
Safeguard Your Cryptocurrency Assets With Estate Planning

One of the biggest appeals of cryptocurrency, like Bitcoin, is that it is decentralized, unregulated, and...

Clarifying Questions
My mother died with credit card debt. Am I responsible for paying that debt?

Q: My mother recently died with lots of credit card debt. Am I responsible for paying that debt? -Worried...

Asset Protection, Same Gender Couples, Estate Planning
I Don’t Have Kids, So Why Do I Need Estate Planning? Part 2

Last week, we shared the first part of our series on the importance of estate planning for those without ...

Asset Protection, Same Gender Couples, Estate Planning
I Don’t Have Kids, So Why Do I Need Estate Planning? Part 1

It’s a common misconception to think that if you don’t have children, you don’t need to worry about estat...

Asset Protection, Caring for Elderly Parents
Ensure the Security of Your Senior Parents' Identity and Financial Assets

Today, we live in an uber-connected world, where nearly every type of financial transaction—shopping, ban...

Kids Protection Planning, Awakened Parenting, Estate Planning
6 Steps to Select and Name the Right Guardians for Your Children—Part 2

Last week, we shared the first part of our series on selecting and naming the right guardians for your ch...

Clarifying Questions
How does a living will work?

Q: How does a living will work? —Confused A: Dear Confused: Though it can be easy to confuse a “living wi...

Kids Protection Planning, Awakened Parenting, Estate Planning
6 Steps to Select and Name the Right Guardians for Your Children—Part 1

One of your most important responsibilities as a parent is to select and legally document guardians for y...

Estate Planning Mistakes, Caring for Elderly Parents, Planning for Seniors, Estate Planning
Estate Planning Mistakes Seniors Can’t Afford to Make

Estate planning really should be considered as soon as you acquire your first asset, have a child, or ste...

Asset Protection, wills and trusts, Estate Planning
The Key Differences Between Wills and Trusts

When discussing estate planning, a will is what most people think of first. Indeed, wills have been the m...

Awakened Parenting, Family Financial Planning, Life Planning
How and When to Talk to Your Children About Money

Whether you consider yourself wealthy or not, you need to think about how (and when) you’ll talk with you...

Clarifying Questions
What is long-term care insurance?

Q: What is long-term care insurance? —Unsure A: Dear Unsure: Long-term care (LTC) insurance covers your b...

Kids Protection Planning, Awakened Parenting, Estate Planning
Before Your Kids Leave For College, Make Sure They Sign These Documents

With high school graduation coming up, many parents will soon watch their children become adults (at leas...

Awakened Parenting, Blended Family Issues, Conscious Divorce
3 Key Benefits of Conscious Uncoupling

The concept of conscious uncoupling, or conscious divorce, has been around for decades in the psychothera...

Life Planning, Planning for Your Pets, Estate Planning
Estate Planning Tips for Ensuring Your Pets Are Properly Cared For

It’s sad but true that many pets end up in shelters after their owner dies or becomes incapacitated. In f...

Asset Protection, Enlightened Insurance, Life Planning
Choosing the Right Life Insurance Policy

While purchasing life insurance may seem pretty straightforward, it’s actually quite complex, especially ...

Celebrity Estate Planning, Estate Planning Mistakes, Estate Planning
Estate Planning Best Practices Gleaned From Famous Celebrity Deaths

Discussing death can be awkward, and many people would prefer just to ignore estate planning all together...

Clarifying Questions
What is digital estate planning?

Q: What is digital estate planning? —Wondering A: Dear Wondering: Digital estate planning involves protec...

Asset Protection, Blended Family Issues, Estate Planning
Common Estate Planning Issues for a Second (or More) Marriage

These days, second and even third marriages are fairly commonplace. And the estate planning issues that a...

Awakened Parenting, Same Gender Couples, Estate Planning
Same-Gender Couples Fighting for Parental Rights Can Use Estate Planning

In 2015, when the Supreme Court ruled that same-gender couples had the right to marry, the LGBTQ communit...

Family Financial Planning, Save Money On Your Taxes
How Will the New Tax Law Affect Your Family?

President Trump signed the new Tax Cuts and Jobs Act bill into law on December 22, 2017, and the law incl...

Estate Planning Mistakes, Kids Protection Planning, Estate Planning
5 Common Estate Planning Mistakes and How to Avoid Them

Since estate planning involves thinking about death, many people put it off until their senior years or s...

Clarifying Questions
Can I name multiple beneficiaries on my life insurance policy?

Q: Can I name multiple beneficiaries on my life insurance policy? --Curious A: Dear Curious: There are se...

Kids Protection Planning, Estate Planning
What to Expect From Your Initial Meeting With Your Personal Family Lawyer®

Whether you’ve met with an estate planning attorney before or it’s your first time, it’s important to und...

Caring for Elderly Parents, Life Planning, Planning for Seniors
4 Warning Signs Your Elderly Relative May Be the Victim of Financial Abuse

Some of the most disturbing crimes against the elderly involve financial exploitation. While physical abu...

Family Financial Planning, Life Planning, Planning for Seniors
Suze Orman Says This Is the Age You Should Retire—Not a Month or Year Before (and Here's What She Misses)

If you’re middle aged or older, it’s likely that one of your most pressing concerns is not having enough ...

Awakened Parenting, Conscious Divorce
The Real Planned Parenthood: Platonic Parenting

Divorce can be one of the most unpleasant—and often traumatic—experiences of your life, especially if you...

Family Financial Planning, Life Planning
4 Cryptocurrency Risks and Scams and How to Navigate Them — Part 2

Last week, we shared the first part of our series on cryptocurrency risks and scams, and if you haven’t r...

Clarifying Questions
Can My Will Be Contested?

Q: Can my will be contested? Concerned testator-- A: Dear Concerned: Creating a will should give you peac...

Family Financial Planning, Life Planning
4 Cryptocurrency Risks and Scams and How to Navigate Them — Part 1

It’s no secret that Bitcoin and other brands of cryptocurrency are one of the hottest new investment oppo...

Family Financial Planning, Save Money On Your Taxes
New Bill is Potential Game Changer for Your Family’s Tax Strategy

UPDATE: The new tax bill has been signed into law, so for information on the bill's final provisions and ...

Family Financial Planning, Save Money On Your Taxes
Pay For a Loved One’s Education With an Education Trust Fund

Today’s parents are all too familiar with the budget-busting cost of funding a child’s college education....

Clarifying Questions
What Will Happen to My Pet in a Natural Disaster?

Q: What will happen to my pet in a natural disaster? Pet Parent-- A: Dear Pet Parent: In the wake of natu...

Kids Protection Planning, Awakened Parenting, Life Planning
Want to Be an Awesome Parent? Stop Stressing and Spend More Time on Self-Care

All parents have undoubtedly felt guilty at some point for not spending enough time with their children. ...

Family Financial Planning, Save Money On Your Taxes
Tax Benefits of Buying a Second Home

Buying a second home can provide you with a place to relax, unwind, and escape from it all. It can also p...

Kids Protection Planning, wills and trusts, Estate Planning
Ready to Write Your Will? Consider This Before You Go It Alone or Online.

A last will and testament is the most commonly thought of document when it comes to an estate plan. But, ...

Life Planning, Planning for Seniors, Estate Planning
The Downsizing Generation: Handling a Surplus of Stuff When a Loved One Ages

As the baby boomer generation ages—and downsizes—more and more adult children will be tasked with going t...

Enlightened Insurance, Family Financial Planning, Life Planning
Weathering the Storm: How Families Can Plan for Natural Disasters

Planning for natural disasters is more than just stocking up on canned food and water. In a natural disas...

Clarifying Questions
How Can Snowbirding Help Me Save on Taxes?

Q: How can snowbirding help me save on taxes? Recent Retiree-- A: Dear Retiree: Snowbirding is a great wa...

Planning for Your Pets, wills and trusts, Estate Planning
How to Ensure Your Pets Are Protected in the Event of Your Death or Incapacity

If you have pets, you probably want to make sure they are well-taken care of, if anything happens to you....

Celebrity Estate Planning, Family Financial Planning, Estate Planning
The Ten Richest Families in America and Their Rise to Riches

Self-made millionaires are not uncommon in the dotcom era, but their fortunes pale in comparison to those...

Asset Protection, Estate Planning Mistakes, wills and trusts
The Pitfalls of DIY Wills: Lessons Learned from a Florida Probate Case

DIY wills are becoming more prevalent as legal services can now be accessed easily online. For better or ...

Awakened Parenting, Family Financial Planning, wills and trusts
Easy Mistakes to Avoid When Passing Assets to Your Child

Setting up a trust fund for your children can ensure that the money you are leaving behind for them is ta...

Clarifying Questions
What Does Transfer on Death Mean?

Q: What does transfer on death mean? Prudent Planner-- A: Dear Prudent: Transfer on death (TOD) is a meth...

Asset Protection, Family Financial Planning, Estate Planning
What to Do With Surplus Cash: Pay Down Debt, Spend or Invest?

When you come into a cash surplus from a company bonus, a tax refund, an inheritance or something similar...

Estate Planning Mistakes, Life Planning, Blended Family Issues
How Legal Planning Helps Build a Strong Blended Family

Yours, mine and ours … in today’s modern family, it’s oh so common. The blended family is the product of ...

Family Financial Planning, Life Planning, Same Gender Couples
Financial + Legal Planning for Unmarried Couples: Should You Legally Marry or Not?

While the Supreme Court issued a landmark decision to legalize same-sex marriage in the U.S. making it po...

Celebrity Estate Planning, Estate Planning Mistakes, Estate Planning
Planning Pays Off: An Illustrative Look at Carrie Fisher’s Semi-Failed Estate Plan

Whether your estate is modest or movie star worthy, the value of a good estate plan, properly handled, ca...

Estate Planning Mistakes, wills and trusts, Estate Planning
Is California’s New Transfer on Death Deed a Safe Alternative to a Living Trust?

Perhaps you’ve heard from a well-meaning friend or advisor that you can use an inexpensive Transfer on De...

Clarifying Questions
What’s the best way to save for college?

Q: What’s the best way to save for college? --Planning Parent A: Dear Planning: Saving for college is a d...

Enlightened Insurance, Awakened Parenting, Family Financial Planning
How to Buy Life Insurance Like a Pro

Life insurance is a purchase only made once or twice in a lifetime, so it is common to be unaware of the ...

Asset Protection, Enlightened Insurance, Estate Planning
Planning to Protect Your Assets

Asset protection planning is an important step to take in safeguarding your hard-earned assets from being...

Asset Protection, Family Financial Planning, Estate Planning
Bitcoin, Ethereum, and the Blockchain -- What Happens When You Die?

Unless you’ve been living under a rock, you’ve probably heard about Bitcoin. But, you may not know what i...

Asset Protection, Caring for Elderly Parents, Planning for Seniors
The Real Cost of Caring

Dealing with the financial stressors of caring for an aging loved one can affect your ability to provide ...

Clarifying Questions
Do I need my estate planning documents reviewed by an attorney?

Q: Do I need my estate planning documents reviewed by an attorney? --Estate Planning Novice A: Dear Novic...

Estate Planning Mistakes, Estate Planning
How “Shopping Around” for An Estate Plan Could Leave Your Family With an Expensive, Unintended Mess

Maybe you’ve heard that before investing in a professional service you should “get three estimates.” Whil...

Family Financial Planning, Life Planning
Think Your Salary Can Bring You Safely to Retirement? Think Again.

In the sea of financial planning wisdom, there are too few messages about the importance of mindset. Gone...

Family Financial Planning, wills and trusts, Conscious Divorce
Divorcing? Here's What You Should Know About How it May Affect Your Trust

Trusts vary in their structure, funding, and terms, so it’s hard to know how divorce will impact your tru...

Celebrity Estate Planning, Save Money On Your Taxes, Estate Planning
Tax Lessons to be Learned from Celebrity Estate Plans

A celebrity's image and likeness can continue to produce considerable income after death. This type of in...

Estate Planning Mistakes, Family Financial Planning, wills and trusts
Why You Should Never Buy Your Will From Living Social or Groupon

Of the handful of major life events that require your serious consideration, few are as emotionally charg...

Clarifying Questions
What is a revocable living trust?

Q: What is a revocable living trust? --Conscientious Planner A: Dear Conscientious: Revocable living trus...

Celebrity Estate Planning, Life Planning, Estate Planning
Facing Grief After the Death of a Loved One Can Be the Key to a Life of Health and Wholeness

If you have ever met someone who repeatedly sabotaged their life or seemed to have a hard time moving thi...

Caring for Elderly Parents, Family Financial Planning, Life Planning
The Unexpected Costs of Caring for Elderly Parents In Your Home

Multi-generational households are becoming the new (or maybe it’s really old) in vogue way to handle the ...

Enlightened Insurance, Kids Protection Planning, Family Financial Planning
Growing Family? Time to Audit Your Insurance Policies

As your family size grows, there is lots to prepare for and consider. Welcoming a new family member can b...

Kids Protection Planning, Awakened Parenting, Life Planning
Your Rights as the Parent of a Young Adult - What to Know When a Medical Crisis Hits

As a parent, you are most likely quite accustomed to managing the legal and medical affairs of your child...

Kids Protection Planning, Awakened Parenting, Estate Planning
Commit to Your Estate Plan Before Committing to a Trip Away

If you are planning a vacation, you probably have a lot to prepare for before you get away. Between struc...

Clarifying Questions
How should I update my estate plan before I remarry?

Q: How should I update my estate plan before I remarry? -Betrothed spouse to be A: Dear Betrothed: Everyo...

Life Planning, Planning for Seniors, Estate Planning
What Happens to Your Body When You Die? The Choice Can Be Yours.

Many of us are too afraid of death to carefully consider what happens to our bodies after we die. Unfortu...

Asset Protection, Awakened Parenting, Life Planning
How (and Why) to Disinherit a Child or Grandchild

Completely disinheriting a child or grandchild should be reserved for extreme circumstances. And, if thos...

Conscious Divorce, Save Money On Your Taxes
Recently Divorced? Here’s Why You Should Put Aside Your Differences Come Tax Season

Divorce can wreak havoc on your finances. But what many divorced couples don’t realize is that they can e...

Life Planning, Planning for Seniors, Estate Planning
Generational Wisdom in 32 Questions

What can we learn from earlier generations? Quite a bit, says Brendon Burchard, but only if we ask the ri...

Clarifying Questions
How are decisions made for an incapacitated person without a living will?

Q: How are decisions made for an incapacitated person without a living will? --Concerned family member A:...

Celebrity Estate Planning, Estate Planning Mistakes, Kids Protection Planning, wills and trusts
Leaving Without a Plan: Prince Didn't Leave a Will & Here's Why You Should

Even after death, celebrities are highly publicized for their mistakes, many of which we make ourselves. ...

Kids Protection Planning, Awakened Parenting, Blended Family Issues
Defining the Legal Relationship Between Grandparents and Their Grandchildren

Raising a grandchild (or even spending a lot of time with your grandchild while his or her parents work) ...

Enlightened Insurance, Family Financial Planning, Planning for Seniors
How Can I Plan for a Strategic Retirement?

Are you approaching retirement? Not sure how you can ensure a smooth transition from working life to reti...

Awakened Parenting, Family Financial Planning
The Future of Finances: How to Teach Your Kids to Be Money Savvy

Part of being an enlightened parent is being thoughtful about how we teach our kids about adult life. Of ...

Clarifying Questions
What is legal guardianship?

Q: What is legal guardianship? --Concerned parent A: Dear Concerned: Broadly defined, a legal guardian is...

Caring for Elderly Parents, Kids Protection Planning, Awakened Parenting, Family Financial Planning, Planning for Seniors
When Duty Calls: Navigating the Sandwich Generation with Ease

The average age of parents raising children in the US continues to rise, leaving many middle-aged America...

Asset Protection, Enlightened Insurance, Kids Protection Planning, Family Financial Planning, Life Planning
Spring Cleaning For Your Legal and Financial Affairs

Spring has officially sprung and that means it’s spring cleaning time. Shake out the rugs, clean out the ...

Family Financial Planning, Planning for Seniors, Save Money On Your Taxes
Think Your 401(k) Is Flexible? 6 IRA Benefits Your 401(k) Doesn’t Have

When it comes to retirement plans, IRAs and 401(k)s provide many of the same benefits. But in certain sit...

Caring for Elderly Parents, Awakened Parenting, Life Planning
Watch Out for This Predatory Phone Scam

Today, even the most conscientious can fall victim to phone scams. Claiming everything from free cruise v...

Conscious Divorce, Estate Planning
Estate Planning and Divorce: Incapacity, Death and Alimony Considerations

If you are considering a divorce, it’s critical to understand the impact of your divorce on what would ha...

Clarifying Questions
How can I provide for my pet in my estate planning?

Q: How can I provide for my pet in my estate planning? --Concerned Pet Owner A: Dear Concerned: Many peop...

Estate Planning Mistakes, Kids Protection Planning, Awakened Parenting, wills and trusts, Estate Planning
Estate Planning Essentials for Parents

A comprehensive estate plan can protect the things that matter most. For many, this means their property ...

Life Planning, Planning for Your Pets, wills and trusts, Estate Planning
Planning for the Care of Your Pet: How to Include Your Pet in Your Estate Plan

If your pet is beloved as a family member, you likely want to ensure that he or she will be well cared fo...

Family Financial Planning, Save Money On Your Taxes, Estate Planning
Estate Taxes in Trump’s America

Donald Trump has proposed a radical tax reform agenda for his presidency. Part of this reform is his inte...

Same Gender Couples, Blended Family Issues, Estate Planning
(Re)Defining Family: Estate Planning for the Post-Nuclear Family

Blended families, unmarried couples, assistive reproductive technology (ART) and same-sex unions and marr...

Clarifying Questions
What will happen to my assets when I die?

Q: What will happen to my assets when I die? --Concerned Family Member A: Dear Concerned: Many people won...

Family Financial Planning, Life Planning
How to Make Your First Million by Age 40

Being in your 20s or 30s doesn’t mean financial success is decades away. In fact, earning big money is of...

Caring for Elderly Parents, Family Financial Planning, Planning for Seniors
Does Your Parent Need Help With Finances? Start Here

Caring for an aging parent is a common challenge for Baby Boomers, and now even Gen-X’ers and Millennials...

Life Planning, Estate Planning
Three Health Care Documents You Need to Include in Your Estate Plan

Decisions about your health care are some of the most important you will ever make. Don’t put off making ...

Awakened Parenting, Life Planning, Estate Planning
How to Incorporate Family Values in Your Estate Planning

Baby boomers know money isn’t the only important aspect of estate planning. A 2012 study released by the ...

Clarifying Questions
How can a personal injury lawsuit or other settlement affect my government benefits?

Q: How can a personal injury lawsuit or other settlement affect my government benefits? --Concerned Plain...

Family Financial Planning, Estate Planning
Power of Attorney - What is it and Is it Enough?

Power of attorney (POA) is a document that grants a specific person, called an agent, the authority to ma...

Awakened Parenting, Family Financial Planning, Life Planning
How These Common Assets Can Affect Your Financial Aid Eligibility

Financial aid is a valuable resource for students and their families. And sending a child off to college ...

Kids Protection Planning, Awakened Parenting, Family Financial Planning, Life Planning, Estate Planning
Is Your Family “Too Young” to Need an Estate Plan?

Young families face different estate planning needs and challenges than those who have had a long life be...

Life Planning, Estate Planning
How to Live Before You Die

In Steve Jobs’ 2005 commencement speech at Stanford University, he said: “Remembering that I’ll be dead s...

Clarifying Questions
What Happens to My 401K When I Die?

Q: What Happens to My 401K When I Die? --Concerned Employee A: Dear Concerned: For many working-age adult...

Family Financial Planning, Estate Planning
Estate Planning After Marriage Equality: What All Couples Should Know

In the wake of the Supreme Court’s landmark ruling in Obergefell v. Hodges, same-sex couples nationwide f...

Asset Protection, Estate Planning Mistakes, Life Planning, wills and trusts, Estate Planning
Why You Need to Update Your Estate Plan After These Life Events

Too many estate plans are created and then quickly forgotten, put on a shelf, and never looked at again. ...

Caring for Elderly Parents, Life Planning, Estate Planning
How to Discuss Estate Planning With Aging (or Sick) Loved Ones - Part 2

In our last newsletter, we shared the first part of our article on how to discuss estate planning with ag...

Caring for Elderly Parents, Life Planning, Estate Planning
How to Discuss Estate Planning With Aging (or Sick) Loved Ones - Part 1

Someone you love is aging. Or maybe, facing a potentially terminal illness. And you know it’s time for th...

Clarifying Questions
How can I be financially ready to retire when the time comes?

Q: How can I be financially ready to retire when the time comes? -- Concerned Worker A: Dear Concerned: M...

Life Planning, Estate Planning
Can Facing Your Death Actually Increase Happiness During Life?

Bhutan is an independent state in Southeast Asia, bordered by China to the north and India to the south. ...

Life Planning, wills and trusts, Estate Planning
Life Changes that Require an Update to Your Estate Plan

Even if you do not have an estate plan that you’ve created, the State has one for you. And it’s likely on...

Asset Protection, Family Financial Planning, Life Planning, Save Money On Your Taxes, Estate Planning
What You Can Learn from the Clintons’ Tax Returns

In anticipation of the election and in response to public demand, Hillary and Bill Clinton have released ...

Caring for Elderly Parents
What Is Elder Abuse and How Can You Keep Yourself (or Your Parents) Safe?

One day, you will be an elderly person, you hope. Maybe you are already there. Or, your parents are. And,...

Clarifying Questions
I just found out that my granddaughter is gay. I’m crushed. What should I do?

Q: I just found out that my granddaughter is gay. I’m crushed. What should I do? -- Anguished Grandparent...

Life Planning, Planning for Seniors
End-of-Life Communication and Care: A Struggle Most Physicians Encounter

Just as it is difficult for many of us to talk about our ultimate death, it is also difficult for doctors...

Awakened Parenting, Life Planning
Khan Academy Reinforces Critical Education Skills - for Free!

The quality of the education a child receives through public or private school systems can vary greatly. ...

Kids Protection Planning, Awakened Parenting, Life Planning
Name Legal Guardians for Your Kids for Free On This Website

One of the hardest things to do as a human being is to acknowledge our mortality. Some people even seem t...

Kids Protection Planning, Awakened Parenting, Life Planning, Blended Family Issues, Conscious Divorce
Legal Rights of Grandparents: In Honor of National Grandparents Day

When all is ideal in a family, the bond between grandparent and child is a special one. Maybe you’ve even...

Asset Protection, Estate Planning Mistakes, Family Financial Planning, Life Planning, Planning for Seniors, Estate Planning
The Four Tricky Cons of 2016

Electronic technology has brought about tremendous benefits for today’s society. We can access goods, ser...

Clarifying Questions
Is it true that things I tell my lawyer are confidential?

Q: Is it true that things I tell my lawyer are confidential? -- Concerned Client A: Dear Concerned: To re...

Awakened Parenting, Life Planning
Permission To Love Your Children

This is your letter of permission to go ahead and simply love your children. Put down those expectations ...

Caring for Elderly Parents, Planning for Seniors
Can Family Caregiving Change Your Reputation (and Self-Perception) For the Better?

Are you the unappreciated black sheep in your family? Have you wished you could redeem your reputation an...

Family Financial Planning, Life Planning
Conscious Money Challenge: Know How You Are Invested

If you have money invested in the stock market, whether through a retirement account or a straight broker...

Awakened Parenting, Life Planning, Estate Planning
How to Continue Your Family Values for Generations

Most of us want to make a mark in the world. That’s a big part of what gives our lives meaning. And wheth...

Clarifying Questions
Should I be concerned that my divorce will hurt my kids?

Q: Should I be concerned that my divorce will hurt my kids? -- Concerned Parent A: Dear Concerned: Many p...

Life Planning
Work-Life Balance: A Personal Perspective

Pick up the latest copy of just about any business magazine, and you’re likely to find at least one artic...

Life Planning, Planning for Seniors
Clean Burials: New Mushroom Suit Removes Body Toxins

If you have ever wondered about the impact your body will have on the environment when you are gone, you ...

Family Financial Planning, Life Planning, Estate Planning
Writing Your Life Story: Why

How often do you wish you knew more about your family? When we’re young, we don’t necessarily pay attenti...

Celebrity Estate Planning, Caring for Elderly Parents, Planning for Seniors
Even Celebrities Like Queen Latifah Act as Caregivers for Their Aging Parents

We may not think about it often, but even celebrities take care of their aging parents. Actress, singer, ...

Clarifying Questions
How can I help my grandchild with college without jeopardizing financial aid?

Q: How can I help my grandchild with college without jeopardizing financial aid? -- Worried Grandparent A...

Celebrity Estate Planning, Kids Protection Planning, Blended Family Issues, Estate Planning
Kelly Clarkson Starts Blended Family: What She Needs to Consider

Starting a new family is always exciting and even a tad scary. This natural apprehension can be enhanced ...

Awakened Parenting, Family Financial Planning, Life Planning, Blended Family Issues, Estate Planning
Life Is Multifaceted: Teach a Child to Be Open and Embrace Complexities

When you picture a “normal” family, what do you see? Is it the traditional notion of one male parent and ...

Enlightened Insurance, Life Planning, Planning for Seniors
Signing Up for Medicare: The Facts For You or Your Parents Nearing Age 65

People who are nearing the age of 65 should be making plans for the transition from private health care t...

Awakened Parenting, Life Planning
Guiding Your Children to Grow Through Failure -- a Gift That Keeps On Giving

Laws and rules are created within organized societies to regulate interaction and protect citizens. A cla...

Enlightened Insurance, Caring for Elderly Parents, Life Planning, Planning for Seniors
When Is the Purchase of Long-Term Care Insurance Worth It?

Elder Care is emerging as a significant issue for many people as life spans continue to increase. It is n...

Clarifying Questions
I know I need to make a will, but somehow planning for death makes it seem so much more real. How can I overcome my fear?

Q: I know I need to make a will, but somehow planning for death makes it seem so much more real. How can ...

Awakened Parenting, Life Planning, Estate Planning
Parenting: Build Your Child’s Resilience to Support Their Ultimate Success

If you are like most parents, your primary objective is to support your children to be prepared to handle...

Life Planning, Planning for Your Pets
Donate Empty Pill Bottles to Help Others

When we pick up our prescriptions, we take the containers for granted. By contrast, in many countries med...

Awakened Parenting, Family Financial Planning, Life Planning
Five Valuable Traits a Child Can Learn from Working Parents

Those of us who work sometimes feel that we are doing our children a disservice. Sure, we bring home a pa...

Clarifying Questions
Do savings bonds still have a place in my financial portfolio?

Q: Do savings bonds still have a place in my financial portfolio? --Curious Investor A: Dear Curious: Sav...

Celebrity Estate Planning, Estate Planning Mistakes, Estate Planning
Recent Superstar Death Brings Estate Planning to the Forefront of Discussion

The untimely death of superstar Prince has brought a surprising issue to American living rooms: estate pl...

Caring for Elderly Parents, Family Financial Planning
How To Proactively Plan To Reduce the Impact of Caring For Elderly Family Members

Much has been written about our nation’s need to help mothers in the workplace. Many benefits, such as ma...

Life Planning
Emergency iPhone Health App Can Save Your Life

Have you given any thought to how emergency medical care providers know who to contact or what to do if y...

Asset Protection, Family Financial Planning, Life Planning, Save Money On Your Taxes
What to Do With a Cash Windfall

Many of us like to fantasize about winning the lottery. We muse with our friends about how we might spend...

Conscious Divorce, Estate Planning
Financial Myths About Getting a Divorce

If your marriage is on the rocks, one of your many worries is probably the impact divorce will have on yo...

Clarifying Questions
How can I preserve my assets for my kids and loved ones?

Q: How can I preserve my assets for my kids and loved ones? --Caring Parent A: Dear Parent: With tax time...

Family Financial Planning, Life Planning, Save Money On Your Taxes
Got a Job? Here’s How You Can Save Money You Might Be Losing Right Now

Did you know there are many steps that you can take to save money via your employment? Some of these stra...

Family Financial Planning, Life Planning, Save Money On Your Taxes
Should I Pay Off My Mortgage Now or Save More Money?

To many people, living debt-free is a lifelong dream. It’s the picture of the easy life. Retired with no ...

Family Financial Planning, Life Planning, Planning for Seniors, Save Money On Your Taxes
Can I Benefit from a Reverse Mortgage?

It seems that we can’t turn on the television or radio without hearing an ad for a “reverse mortgage.” So...

Life Planning, Estate Planning
Talking with Your Family About Your Estate Plan

Is it time to have “the talk” with your kids? We’re not talking about a “birds and bees” talk but one tha...

Clarifying Questions
What is the Best Way to Save for My Child's College Education?

Q: What is the Best Way to Save for My Child's College Education? --Concerned Parent A: One of best ways ...

Life Planning, Planning for Your Pets, Estate Planning
Pets in Your Will

For those of us who have pets that would be left behind after we die, there may be a desire to make arran...

Asset Protection, Estate Planning Mistakes, Planning for Seniors, Estate Planning
Could This Happen to You or Your Loved One? Town Demolishes House While Owner Is in Hospital

Imagine this: your elderly uncle with no family near his home travels South to Florida for surgery and ha...

Caring for Elderly Parents, Planning for Seniors
Legal Strategies to Avoid Guardianship

As senior citizens continue to age, the likelihood increases that they will become physically or mentally...

Awakened Parenting, Family Financial Planning, Life Planning, Estate Planning
Family Financial Traditions

To some degree or another, we are all a function of the social environments in which we were raised. Of c...

Clarifying Questions
Will I Ever be Able to Save Enough For Retirement?

Q: Will I Ever be Able to Save Enough For Retirement? -- Approaching Middle-Age A: Dear Approaching: Arti...

Kids Protection Planning, Family Financial Planning, Life Planning, Save Money On Your Taxes
Holiday Bonus + Tax Refund Spending: Where to Put it For Max Return

Did you get a holiday bonus from your employer? Or maybe you have a tax refund coming. If so, do you have...

Caring for Elderly Parents, Family Financial Planning, Life Planning, Planning for Seniors
Watch Out for Predatory Tax Liens on Your Family Home

As our parents and other loved ones age, they may need a little more attention from us. Parents, grandpar...

Family Financial Planning, Life Planning, Save Money On Your Taxes
Planning for Charitable Giving

January 1 wipes the slate clean for your tax deductible charitable contributions. That might be a good ti...

Life Planning
The Best Gift You Can Leave to Your Loved Ones

A Wisconsin woman, whose story was widely reported in media nationwide, has died. Heather McManamy, who w...

Asset Protection, Family Financial Planning, Life Planning, Planning for Seniors, Save Money On Your Taxes
Retirement Planning Reality Check

The National Institute on Retirement Security states that the funds American workers have set aside for r...

Planning for Seniors
What Happens to an Indigent Person After Death?

There are so many people in our midst who are considered indigent. We see them on street corners, in park...

Family Financial Planning, Life Planning
Am I Due Class Action Settlement Money?

Class action lawsuits are common in our court systems. Most everyone has received a notice in the mail of...

Clarifying Questions
The Gift that Keeps on Giving

Q: With all the new gadgets and toys out this year, I'm struggling to come up with gift ideas for my frie...

Awakened Parenting, Family Financial Planning, Life Planning
How to Raise Responsible Kids - Part 4

Welcome back to the fourth and final article in our series on How to Raise Responsible Kids. You can read...

Awakened Parenting, Life Planning
How to Raise Responsible Kids - Part 3

Welcome back to the third article in our series on How to Raise Responsible Kids. You can read part 1, wh...

Awakened Parenting, Family Financial Planning, Life Planning
How to Raise Responsible Kids - Part 2

Welcome back to the second article in our series on How to Raise Responsible Kids. You can read part 1, w...

Awakened Parenting, Life Planning
How to Raise Responsible Kids

My guess is that if we did a poll of every parent we know and asked them what they most want for their ki...

Life Planning, Planning for Seniors
A Gift to Your Family and the Environment: Green Burial

The practice of burying our dead in the ground has been traced back over 100,000 years ago. For the vast ...

Kids Protection Planning, Awakened Parenting, Life Planning
Could an AMBER alert save your child?

As a parent, your number one job is to keep your children safe, and that’s not always easy. In our imperf...

Asset Protection, Awakened Parenting, Family Financial Planning, Life Planning, wills and trusts, Estate Planning
How to Pass On Family Heirlooms Without Causing a Family Feud

The holidays are traditionally the time for family gatherings, where generations come together and perfor...

Asset Protection, Awakened Parenting, Family Financial Planning, Life Planning, wills and trusts, Estate Planning
How To Leave Your Home To Your Kids

Many parents want to know the best way to leave a home to their children. Before you make a plan, you sho...

Life Planning, Planning for Seniors, wills and trusts
How to Ensure Your End-of-Life Wishes Are Respected

How do you want to die? Do you want lifesaving treatments to be administered even if all brain activity h...

Family Financial Planning, Life Planning, Same Gender Couples, wills and trusts, Blended Family Issues
Landmark Supreme Court Ruling on Same-Sex Marriage Will Have Monumental Effects

In June, the United States Supreme Court issued its decision in Obergefell v. Hodges, a highly publicized...

Asset Protection, Family Financial Planning, Life Planning, wills and trusts, Estate Planning
What Is a Trust?

A trust is a legal creation set up to benefit someone or something. For example, some people set up trust...

Asset Protection, Life Planning
The Top Three Things to Know Before You Sign a Residential Lease

If you own your home or you’ve been renting so long that this information is old hat to you, consider sha...

Estate Planning
Consider Your Estate Plan Before Your Summer Travel

It’s summer, when travel is the busiest and careful planning is necessary to nab the best airfare or book...

Family Financial Planning, wills and trusts, Blended Family Issues, Estate Planning
Estate Planning for Blended Families

The term “blended family” has become commonplace in our society and refers to a family where one or both ...

Family Financial Planning, wills and trusts, Save Money On Your Taxes, Estate Planning
Estate Planning with Gifts to Grandchildren

If you are in your “golden years” and are looking for ways to spread your wealth, you should consider the...

Kids Protection Planning, Awakened Parenting, Family Financial Planning, Life Planning, wills and trusts, Estate Planning
Protecting Your Child with a Special Needs Trust

When you have a family member with special needs, it is important to understand that your estate planning...

wills and trusts, Estate Planning
5 Ways to Keep Your Family Out of Court After You Die

You have likely heard over and over that there are many advantages to creating a comprehensive estate pla...

Asset Protection, Estate Planning Mistakes, Family Financial Planning, Life Planning, wills and trusts, Estate Planning
How to Protect Family Heirlooms From a Family Feud

The passing of family heirlooms from one generation to another should be welcome tradition in most famili...

Family Financial Planning, Save Money On Your Taxes, Estate Planning
How to Benefit from an Estate Plan When You Own Real Estate

Many parents believe that by adding a child’s name to a property deed, they can pass along the property o...

Kids Protection Planning, Awakened Parenting, wills and trusts, Estate Planning
What Every Single Parent Needs to Know About Estate Planning

If you are a single parent, life for you right now probably couldn’t get any busier. You are likely being...

Family Financial Planning, Planning for Seniors, Estate Planning
Legacy Planning: Leaving More to Your Loved Ones Than Money That Will Be Lost Quickly

The assets you leave to your loved ones can either be a source of relief or, sometimes, a source of panic...

Asset Protection, Family Financial Planning, Life Planning, Planning for Seniors, Save Money On Your Taxes, Estate Planning
5 Steps to Fix Your Battered Retirement Plan

It’s no secret that a majority of Americans are ill-prepared for retirement. A recent Forbes.com post det...

Family Financial Planning, wills and trusts, Estate Planning
Why Not Every Child Should be Equal When It Comes to Your Estate Plan

It is natural for parents to want to treat their children equally when it comes to inheritances. However,...

Family Financial Planning, Life Planning, Estate Planning
Estate Planning for Your Digital Afterlife

If you’re like most Americans, you have a rich digital life. You may bank online, invest online and certa...

Asset Protection, Awakened Parenting, Family Financial Planning, Life Planning, wills and trusts, Estate Planning
Is Your Living Trust Really Going to Work For the People You Love?

Traditionally, one of the primary reasons for establishing a living trust has been to avoid probate. But ...

Celebrity Estate Planning, Estate Planning Mistakes, wills and trusts, Estate Planning
What You Can Learn From the Estate Planning Mistakes of Others

There is much to be learned from the mistakes of others and the celebrity world abounds with cautionary t...

Asset Protection, Estate Planning Mistakes, wills and trusts, Estate Planning
How to Fund Your Trust to Avoid Probate

A common estate planning mistake many people make – including celebrities like Michael Jackson – is not e...

Asset Protection, Estate Planning Mistakes, Family Financial Planning, Life Planning, wills and trusts, Estate Planning
5 Things You Need to Know Before You Name Beneficiaries

Once you have chosen the people you want to receive any of your assets -- either from a will, a trust, a ...

Family Financial Planning, Planning for Seniors, Estate Planning
What Families Need to Know About Debt After Death

The poverty rate among seniors is rising, giving rise to the question of whether or not it is possible to...

Family Financial Planning, Life Planning, Save Money On Your Taxes
Debunking 4 Common Myths About Gift Taxes

April 15 is not only the deadline for filing your state and federal income tax returns, but also the dead...

Awakened Parenting, Family Financial Planning, Life Planning, Save Money On Your Taxes, Estate Planning
Family Loans Must Be Made Properly to Avoid Tax Repercussions

The recession made many parents and grandparents into personal bankers, making loans to strapped children...

Asset Protection, Kids Protection Planning, Estate Planning
10 Items That Should be Evaluated During an Estate Plan Review

Estate planning is an ongoing process, and plans should be reviewed with a qualified estate planning atto...

Asset Protection, Family Financial Planning, wills and trusts, Save Money On Your Taxes
A Duty Checklist for Trustees of a Trust

It’s no misnomer that a position with so much responsibility carries the name “trustee”. After all, you h...

wills and trusts, Estate Planning
The Importance of Providing for Incapacity in Your Estate Plan

Avoiding the need for a conservatorship – the process whereby someone is appointed by a court to assume r...

Caring for Elderly Parents, Family Financial Planning, Life Planning, Planning for Seniors
How Long-Term Care Planning Can Protect You From Medicaid Divorce

Currently, it is estimated that 7 in 10 Americans will need some type of long-term care, with Medicaid ex...

Estate Planning Mistakes, Estate Planning
Unintended Consequences from the Case of the Missing Will

Even the best intentions can have unintended consequences when it comes to estate planning. A case now wi...

Asset Protection, Family Financial Planning, wills and trusts, Conscious Divorce, Estate Planning
The Pros and Cons of Prenuptial Agreements

Americans today are getting married later in life. Currently, the average age of a first marriage is 27 f...

Family Financial Planning, Estate Planning
What Women Need to Know About Estate Planning

Women outlive men, make less during their careers and have less in savings due to pay discrepancies and t...

Asset Protection, Estate Planning Mistakes, Caring for Elderly Parents, wills and trusts, Estate Planning
Asset Protection: When a Will Won’t Work

One of the most prevalent misconceptions when it comes to estate planning is that if you have a will, it ...

Celebrity Estate Planning, Caring for Elderly Parents, Family Financial Planning, Life Planning, Planning for Seniors, wills and trusts
Protecting Our Family When It Matters Most

A drama currently playing out in a French courtroom demonstrates that any elderly person can fall victim ...

Kids Protection Planning, wills and trusts, Estate Planning
No More Reasons for Delay in Implementing These 5 Estate Planning Essentials

Last year’s uncertainty about the future of the estate and gift tax caused many people to put their estat...

Caring for Elderly Parents, Family Financial Planning, Life Planning, Planning for Seniors, Estate Planning
Help for Dealing with a Parent’s Dementia Diagnosis

Alzheimer’s Disease is in the news again thanks to Academy Award winner Julianne Moore’s performance in t...

Asset Protection, Estate Planning
The Basic Estate Planning Task EVERY Adult Needs to Review Today

With the federal estate tax exemption at $5.43 million for 2015, many people think estate planning is unn...

Celebrity Estate Planning, Estate Planning Mistakes, Estate Planning
Robin Williams’ Family Fight Over Personal Property Not So Funny

Robin Williams’ wife Susan has gone to court over personal items she says were taken from the couple’s Ti...

Celebrity Estate Planning, Estate Planning Mistakes, Estate Planning
No One Feeling Good About Continuing Battle Over James Brown Estate

James Brown was known for his signature song, “I Feel Good,” but no one is feeling good about the battle ...

Celebrity Estate Planning, Estate Planning Mistakes, Estate Planning
“And the Estate Planning Oscar Goes To...” Lessons on Film About Family

The film “Black Heirlooms” has not received any Oscar nominations. It was made by 32-year-old Amanda Brow...

Estate Planning
Why Everyone Needs an Agent

Everyone needs an agent – and not the Hollywood type. An agent is someone you designate to handle your es...

Estate Planning Mistakes, Estate Planning
Life Lessons From Celebrity Deaths on Updating Your Estate Plan

A new year always brings the sad reviews of notable personalities who have died in the past year. Two not...

Kids Protection Planning, Life Planning, Estate Planning
10 Tips to Ensure Family Harmony Over Your Estate Plan

When your children were small, you no doubt suffered the challenge of keeping peace in the family. We see...

Life Planning, Estate Planning
Why You Should Get Estate Planning Off Your To-Do List in 2015

There are many goals most of us want to accomplish in life, and some of the most important ones center on...

Asset Protection, Celebrity Estate Planning, Family Financial Planning, Life Planning, wills and trusts, Estate Planning
Joan Rivers Has Last Laugh Through Use of a Family Trust

Famous comedienne, Joan Rivers, who died unexpectedly on September 4, 2014, from what is alleged to be a ...

Asset Protection, Awakened Parenting, Family Financial Planning, Life Planning, Save Money On Your Taxes
‘Tis the Season to Be Gifting: How to Do It Right

Not many people would view the IRS as a charitable organization, but you might if you plan your gifting a...

Caring for Elderly Parents, Life Planning, Planning for Seniors
Senior Drivers and Safe Driving

One of the uncomfortable moments of life for many people is when they try to address automobile ownership...

Planning for Seniors
Ashes to Ashes, Dust to...Diamonds? Creating an Ever-Lasting Memorial Through Science

Here are two scientific facts: Diamonds are forever. We are not. However, through science, there is now a...

Enlightened Insurance, Caring for Elderly Parents, Family Financial Planning, Life Planning, Planning for Seniors
How to Reduce the Cost of Long-Term Care Insurance

A person who turns 65 today has a 70% chance of needing some type of long-term care at some time in their...

Family Financial Planning, Life Planning, Estate Planning
The Final Log-Off: What Happens to Your Data When You Die?

Take a moment and consider how much of your life you live online. If you are like most of us, you bank, p...

Life Planning, Estate Planning
5 Reasons Why You Need to Review Your Estate Plan

Creating an estate plan to protect your financial future and that of your family is just the first step i...

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