Financial Advice for Retirement, Social Security, IRAs and Estate Planning

Heirs & Estate Planning

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Retirement Strategy: How to Transfer Real Estate to Family

November 3, 2017

Some assets require special estate planning. One such asset is what I sometimes call heirloom real estate, or family real estate. This is a property that’s been in the family for a while and that you’d like to continue in family ownership. Heirloom real estate includes vacation homes or other second homes, farms, a longtime […]


A Shrewd Look at the Power of Attorney

December 1, 2007

A power of attorney is an essential part of an estate plan. You know that from past visits. The POA ensures that someone can manage your estate when you are unable to. Bills can be paid; investments can be managed; and other actions can be taken. Having a document called a power of attorney does […]


Give Wealth and Still Protect It

February 1, 2006

Many people know why making gifts is part of most estate plans. Yet, they hesitate to make the gifts, because they see potential pitfalls. They fear that the gifts might be spent unwisely or wasted. The donee could squander the assets on gambling, substance abuse, or other activities. Or the wealth could be well-managed for […]


Estate Tax Changes on the Horizon

November 1, 2005

Hurricane Katrina and other factors put on the back burner permanent changes to the estate and gift tax. The plan was to have a permanent change to the estate tax enacted in fall 2005. For now, however, we continue to live with the scheduled phaseout that was enacted in 2001. Under this schedule, taxes will […]


How to Leave a Legacy

October 1, 2005

In our past discussions of estate planning, I often have emphasized that estate planning is the process of building a legacy. When people think estate planning is about money, property, and death, they tend to ignore the process. When they realize it is about values and other elements of building and living a legacy, they […]


Is a Perpetual Trust for You?

October 1, 2005

Recent laws are making it easier to use dynasty trusts to make wealth last for multiple generations. Not too long ago creating a dynasty trust that lasted for generations was difficult. Those of us who took Estate & Trusts in law school tried to learn the intricacies of something called the Law Against Perpetuities, complex […]


Having the Last Word

September 1, 2005

Most estate plans are missing a key ingredient. Too many estate planners do not recommend it, and it isn’t even mentioned in many estate planning discussions. One reason might be that, despite its importance, the document is not legally binding on anyone. This document can clear up a lot of issues. It can save time […]


When You Don’t Prepare

September 1, 2005

Without a letter of instructions and good organization, the heirs are forced to engage in the old-fashioned property and document search. Sometimes it is comical. Sometimes things get ugly. Always a lot of time and effort is wasted. Estate planners tell stories of important documents that never are found and of other documents that are […]

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