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The Benefits of Putting Your IRA Into a Trust

An IRA Trust can help you control distributions after you pass away and restrict access to beneficiaries who might squander the funds of your IRA. How does an IRA Trust accomplish this? Let’s say your IRA is left directly to your beneficiaries outside of a trust. In this situation, your beneficiaries can immediately cash out your IRA and spend the money however they choose. The trouble is, when the IRA is cashed out, Read More

Six Reasons to Revise Your Estate Plan

For your estate plan to meet your needs, it must be kept up to date. We recommend having your plan reviewed at least once every two years, but there are certain situations where you should have your plan revised immediately. Here are some of the most common reasons to do so. You get married. Getting married, or re-married, doesn’t automatically change the provisions of your will or trust. While marriage Read More

Will My Estate Be Taxed?

Everyone has heard the line about taxes and death being the only things you can truly count on. Estate taxes apply to both. When someone passes away, the estate may be taxed before the beneficiaries receive the assets.  Though we will explain why your estate may or may not be subject to estate taxes, you should first understand that they differ from inheritance taxes. With an inheritance tax, the person who is set Read More

Estate Planning After Getting Remarried

As your life changes, so will your estate plan. Adapt it accordingly. One such significant event is when you remarry—especially after already having children. The core focus of estate planning is to ensure your assets get dispersed according to your wishes. As joyous as a second marriage can be, it can alter your plan for the future. By creating an estate plan, you are planning out your future and protecting Read More

Three Factors to Keep in Mind When Buying Long-Term Care Insurance

Many families consider purchasing long-term care insurance in advance to help pay for expensive long-term care in the future. Here are three important factors to keep in mind when buying long-term care insurance. Your daily benefit requirement. Many people look at the national averages for long-term care costs and neglect to factor in regional differences. Don’t make this mistake. Be sure to find out Read More

Moving Out of State? You May Need to Revise Your Estate Plan

Approximately 3 million Americans move to another state each year, while last year alone the number was 4.7 million. Given the stress and myriad changes that come with such a move, it’s not surprising that many people forget to review their estate plans. However, differences between states regarding taxes, ownership of property, inheritance, and more make it extremely important to review, and if necessary, update Read More

Myths and Misconceptions about Retirement Planning

Numerous studies have shown that Americans’ greatest fear regarding retirement is running out of money. Even so, myths abound about planning for retirement, Social Security, the cost of medical care, and more. Let’s explore the reality behind some of the most common retirement planning myths. Social Security is going broke. Approximately 50 percent of elderly Americans derive at least half of their income from Read More

What is a Pour-Over Will and How is It Used?

A pour-over will is a type of last will and testament typically used in trust-based estate planning. Unlike a traditional will, which directs how your property will be distributed to beneficiaries, a pour-over will states that assets not funded into your revocable living trust should go into the trust when you pass away. Why is this distinction important? Let’s say the grantor, the person for whom the revocable Read More

Why Do People “Put Off” Estate Planning?

The statistics are rather alarming. In 2005, 50 percent of Americans had a will; today, only 32 percent of us have one. Meanwhile, only one in three Americans over the age of 55 has a durable power of attorney, and a mere 41 percent of this same demographic has advance health care directives. Why is this? According to statistics culled from a range of sources, Americans lack estate plans for the following Read More

Finding the Right Nursing Home: Don’t Rely Entirely on the Five-Star Quality Rating System

The Five-Star Quality Rating System was created in 2008 by the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS). It has become a popular tool for families to find a quick summary of a given nursing home’s overall level of quality. CMS posts its ratings on the website.Unfortunately, the accuracy of this rating system is open to question. An investigation by the New York Times, in particular, reveals a Read More