For the Love of Your Family

Articles to LIFT Your Family

5 Fast & Furious Estate Planning Lessons from Paul Walker’s Estate

Paul Walker, who starred in the Fast & Furious movie franchise, died tragically in a high speed car accident in Los Angeles last November at the age of 40.  His estate was opened at the end of January in the Superior Court of California, County of Santa Barbara probate court, revealing that he left assets […]

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How to Preserve a Family Vacation Home with a Trust

If you are fortunate enough to have a family vacation home, you know the emotional value it holds for every member of your family.  Many cherished family memories are rooted in a special place, which makes it important for current and future generations to preserve it properly. A recent Wall Street Journal article explored the […]

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How to Create a Plan to Ensure Your Pet’s Care

Most of us who have a pet consider them to be a part of the family; unfortunately, the plans we may have so carefully put together to protect our loved ones do not take our pets into consideration. According to the ASPCA, only about 17% of dog and cat owners have taken the necessary legal […]

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How Much Do You Charge for a Will?

If you came to this page to find out what I’ll charge you for a Will or you are considering calling me (or any other attorney) to ask, “How much do you charge for a will?” stop. It’s not the right question. The question you need an answer to first is “What do I really […]

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10 Common Errors When Naming Life Insurance Beneficiaries That Will Hurt the People You Love – and How to Fix Them

If you make a mistake in naming beneficiaries for your life insurance policy, the people you love will end up being hurt.  Insure.com recently provided a list of the 10 life insurance beneficiary mistakes to avoid.  We elaborate on how they’ll affect you and how to fix them. Naming minor children. If proceeds of your […]

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How to Avoid Family Conflict When Making an Estate Plan

Unfortunately, money has a habit of bringing out the worst in people, even in the best of families.  One of the most important reasons to get your [city/state] estate plan handled is to keep your family out of conflict.  And, yet, without the right counsel, your estate plan could actually cause conflict! Here’s what to […]

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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