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Estate Planning

Recent Developments in Estate and Tax Planning . . . and What to Expect in 2015*

2014 was a relatively quiet year by historical standards, but there were nonetheless some major cases and pronouncements from the IRS that have a significant impact on clients and our practices. This article addresses the more significant events of 2014 . . . and planning ideas and actions you may want to consider as a result. FACTAThe Foreign Account Tax Compliance Act (FACTA) took effect July 1, 2014. Originally signed into law in 2010, FACTA was designed to fight tax evasion by taxpayers with undisclosed foreign financial accounts and other offshore assets by requiring reporting with respect to those accounts and...

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The First Seven Steps to Take After the Loss of a Loved One

Dealing with the loss of a loved one can be traumatic. At best, it is a difficult and confusing period which can last an indeterminate time. you do not need to shoulder the extra burden of mining through the myriad documents associated with a lifetime of financial affairs., business dealing and transactions. We have created put together this guide to help you understand the seven steps you should take immediately after a loved one has passed away. 1) Social Security Call your local Social Security office to report your loved one's passing.  If you were married to the individual who passed away,...

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Five Essential Things Every Adviser Must Know About Estate Planning & Elder Law*

*This is an abbreviated version of Bradley Erdosi’s article originally published in the OC Lawyer magazine. Estate planning, probate and elder law are very specialized areas of the law. Often an adviser working in these areas must consider many different issues in order to properly advise a client. Besides the many cross-over issues, these areas of the law are typically highly emotional for a prospective client and/or his or her family members.Nevertheless, estate planning, probate and elder law issues present themselves in many other areas of the law when counseling a client. Therefore, it is essential that those who counsel clients in...

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You Don’t Have It Made Unless It Is Protected

By: Jeffrey R. Matsen Recently we have had several clients who have come to us for estate, income tax and asset protection planning because they have either built up a substantial net worth over a period of time or they have suddenly come into large sums of money because of selling a business or through inheritance. These clients are, obviously, interested in formulating an estate plan to pass their wealth through to their children and other heirs in the most tax efficient manner possible. However, they are also very concerned (or should be) about preserving and protecting the assets that they...

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Planning for Pets

For many pet owners, pets are members of the family. These individuals sometimes say that if something happens to them, they are more concerned with what will happen to their pets than to other members of their family. This article examines the issues surrounding caring for pets after the disability or death of the pet's owner. Given the feelings of many individuals towards their pets, and the costs of care and longevity of some types of pets, planning in this area can be of critical importance. This is particularly true given our mobile society and that the laws of a different...

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Identifying Hidden Risks Creates Sales Demand

The world changes; clients’ circumstances change; motivations and interests change. As these changes occur—often gradually—“hidden” risks emerge that can significantly deteriorate future wealth if left unattended. By “hidden” risks, we mean exposures of which the client or potential client is likely to be unaware. Identifying hidden risks in an education-based marketing program delivers an important service to your marketplace and, with this knowledge, provides you with a gateway to meaningful conversations about the added value you can deliver to existing and prospective clients.Key Takeaways: - From the past several years, people understand the devastating impact of unmanaged financial risks.- A client’s...

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