For the Love of Your Family

Articles to LIFT Your Family

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: Dear Festive: First off, assure everyone that the conversation is about providing for the family’s future security and wellbeing, not prying into anyone’s finances, health, or personal relationships. Talking about planning isn’t about finding out […]

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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 exemption passed under Trump’s tax cuts? -Anxious planner A: Dear Anxious: The Tax Cuts & Jobs Act increased the exemption to $11.58 million for single taxpayers and $23.16 million for couples. This generous exemption will sunset at the […]

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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: Dear Concerned: Advance directives like living will’s express someone’s wishes and preferences for medical treatment if they are unable to provide consent or refusal (e.g. due to coma or unconsciousness). A living will specifies the life-sustaining measures—such as […]

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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: One of the best ways to save for your child’s college education, assuming the child will definitely go to college, is through a state operated “529” plan. These plans provide tax benefits and are named for Section […]

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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 is, by definition, changeable while you’re still alive, you have the wiggle room to change your mind about what you want to place in there. That said, keep in mind that usually the point […]

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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 Waiting: In most states, a will must be executed within three years of a person’s death. The longer answer is, naturally, it depends. An executor first has to file probate and pay fees to the court […]

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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, make sure you have checked *absolutely* everywhere for a will. There’s a chance it’s hidden somewhere or was made years ago and then forgotten in a file cabinet somewhere. Go through your father’s […]

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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 Living Will and a Medical POA (Power of Attorney) are both “advance directives”—specific instructions about the type of medical care you want or do not want in the future, should you be in a position where […]

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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, Pondering: One thing to consider when transferring ownership of your home is the potential tax liability for your child. You may have owned your house for a long time, and its value […]

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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 that you understand exactly what will happen after you become incapacitated or when you die, to ensure that the people you love don’t end up cleaning up an estate planning nightmare while also grieving your passing.  […]

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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 will for any reason, but that doesn’t mean they’ll be successful. If you think there is a chance that someone may contest your will, it’s critically important for the people you want to leave your assets to […]

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