When you are trying to map out an intelligent plan for the future one of the first things you must do is address the realities of the estate tax. At the current time the estate tax exclusion is $5 million and the top rate of the tax is 35%. This means that the portion of your estate that exceeds $5 million is subject to a tax that will take more than a third of it. As if this arrangement wasn't bad enough, these numbers are scheduled to take a turn for the worse. When the Tax Relief, … [Read more...] about Estate Planning Tool To Prevent Asset Erosion
A lot of people like to say "it will never happen to me," but the reality is that incapacity does strike a significant percentage of people who reach an advanced age. This is something to take very seriously, and if you want to cover all of your bases you should prepare for the possibility pragmatically and intelligently. The ubiquity of Alzheimer's disease is something that many individuals are simply not aware of. According to the Alzheimer's Association, 13% of people who reach the age of 65 … [Read more...] about Don't Overlook Incapacity Planning
If you are paying attention to the issues that elders are facing these days one of the things that stands out is the already high and continually rising costs associated with long-term care. The United States Department of Health and Human Services tells us that around 70% of people who reach the age of 65 will someday need some type of long-term care, be it in the home, in a nursing home or at an assisted living facility. Each year the MetLife Mature Market Institute puts out a survey that … [Read more...] about Long Term Care: How Will You Address The Costs?
Most people are aware of the fact that a power of attorney is a document that is used to give someone the ability to act as your legal agent. You could execute a general power of attorney that gives your appointee sweeping power to act in your behalf in all matters, or a limited power of attorney that is restricted to certain matters or even a single transaction. Estate planning attorneys routinely use powers of attorney to help their clients prepare for the possibility of incapacitation. The … [Read more...] about Durable Springing Powers Of Attorney
Many people consider estate planning to be the realm of those who have reached retirement age, and of course statistically speaking older people pass away more frequently than do younger people. However, people of all ages would do well to have an estate plan in place because you never know what lies in wait around the next corner. Accidents do happen and we all see proof of this each day when we turn on the news or pick up a newspaper in the morning. Plus, devastating illnesses can strike … [Read more...] about Protect Yourself & Your Family With Advance Directives
We were all told back in grade school that the only stupid questions are those that are never asked. Some people understand the wisdom of this statement early on and others do not, but it is true that there is no reason to be embarrassed when you are not entirely sure about the meaning of something. Finding out the answers is always going to be the best course of action rather proceeding with assumptions that may be false. There is no reason why everyone would be an expert on everything (Cliff … [Read more...] about What Exactly Is A Living Will?
As elder law attorneys we keep a close eye on all emerging trends that are relevant to our clients. With this in mind we read a recent study released by the Alzheimer's Association entitled "2010 Alzheimer's Disease Facts and Figures" with great interest. Alzheimer's is the leading cause of dementia among Americans by a very wide margin accounting for some 60%- 80% of all dementia cases. What exactly is dementia? There are specific symptoms, but in a nutshell it could be described as a … [Read more...] about Elder Law & Alzheimer's Disease
Some 1.5 million people are living in nursing homes in the United States, and the average cost for a year in a private room has reached over $83,000. Being financially prepared should you or a family member require long term care is an essential element of estate planning. But being prepared financially is only half of the equation. Finding a facility that best suits your needs is a challenging task as well. Fortunately we live in the information age, and the Internet has made it possible to do … [Read more...] about Long Term Care Choice Can Be Difficult
When you have your finger on the pulse of the elder law issues of the day, the thing that really gets your attention in a broad sense is the fact that the country is getting older. The "Baby Boomers" are now becoming seniors, birth rates are on the decline, and of course medical technology is capable of more amazing things every day. Many people are stunned when they hear that the most rapidly growing segment of American society is the senior population, and the portion that is 85 years old and … [Read more...] about Rising Nursing Home Costs Garner Attention
People who are engaged in planning their estates have a lot to consider, and when you have dependent children in the home one of your primary concerns will be to make sure that they are provided for in any eventuality. You have to talk to your relatives and find out who would be the best willing guardian and state your wishes in that regard in your will. You must also have financial resources in place for the care of the child or children, and one way of doing this is to make sure that you have … [Read more...] about Pet Planning