New Baby? Time to Create Your Estate Plan

Estate planning is often one item that gets pushed back on nearly everyone’s to-do list. The reasons you might be delaying vary: lack of time, not thinking you have enough assets, not knowing how to start, or fear of contemplating death. Whatever the reason for not putting an estate plan together, it is important to understand that if you just … Read More

How Does an IRA Fit Into Your Estate Plan?

When you think of IRAs, you probably think of retirement. But what happens to your IRA money after you’re gone? The answer depends on how you go about creating your estate plan and selecting beneficiaries, and you might be surprised to find out that your money could end up with the wrong people or cause an unexpected tax bill if … Read More

Preparedness Planning for Small Business Owners

Preparing your company for your incapacity or death is vital to the survival of the enterprise. Otherwise, your business will be disrupted, harming your customers, employees, vendors, and ultimately, your family. For this reason, proactive financial planning — including your business and your estate plan — is key. Below are some tips on how to protect your company and keep … Read More

Can You Bequeath Your Frequent Flyer Miles?

If you’re a frequent airline traveler, one of your estate planning concerns may be what will happen to your accumulated miles once you’re gone. They could be worth thousands of dollars, so you probably don’t want them to just disappear, but some airline policies say that’s exactly what will happen. The law doesn’t consider airline miles assets that can be … Read More

Want to Give the Kids an Early Inheritance? 4 Things to Consider

If you’re thinking about giving your children their inheritance early, you’re not alone. Studies suggest that these days, nearly two-thirds of people over the age of 50 would rather pass their assets to the children early than make them wait until the will is read. It can be especially satisfying to fund our children’s dreams while we’re alive to enjoy … Read More

Why a Spendthrift Trust Can Be a Great Solution for Your Heirs

There are many tools that can be used when putting together your estate plan. One such tool is a trust. A trust is a fiduciary arrangement, established by a grantor or trustmaker, which gives a third party (known as a trustee) the authority to manage assets on behalf of one or more persons (known as beneficiaries).  Since every situation is … Read More

How to Share Family History and Heirlooms with Your Estate Plan

The best time to share your family history with loved ones is right now, before the memories are forgotten.  While you can always pull aside children and grandchildren for a chat about family history, did you know you may also be able to use a personal property memorandum in your estate plan to pass along special memories and stories about … Read More

Who should I pick to be successor trustee?

When you create a living trust, you usually need to choose who to name as your successor trustee. It is crucial that this decision is not taken lightly and that the right person is selected for the job. Role of Successor Trustee If you become incapacitated, your successor trustee will step into your shoes and take full control of your … Read More

Debt After Death: Why You Should Think About It When Estate Planning

If you carry debt, do not assume that your death or incapacity will make it automatically disappear. To the contrary, the money you owe may eat away at the assets you were planning to leave to your heirs or — if you owe a large amount of money — may wipe out your estate completely. Debt comes in many different … Read More

Are Payable-On-Death Accounts Right For You?

A payable-on-death account, also called a POD account, is a common way to keep bank and investment accounts out of probate, the court-supervised process that oversees distributing a deceased person’s property. Most people want to avoid their estate going through probate because their heirs will receive the inheritance faster, privately, and at lower cost. Is a POD account an appropriate … Read More