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Articles

10 Tips for Helping Families with Special Needs

No Comments Special Needs

This article examines the unique planning requirements of families with children, grandchildren or other family members (such as parents) with special needs. There are many misconceptions in this area that result in costly mistakes in planning for these special needs beneficiaries. It is therefore incumbent upon us – the client’s advisors – to ensure that […]

Non-Spouse Beneficiaries of Retirement Plans May Convert to Roth

No Comments Estate Planning

A recent IRS notice seems to permit beneficiaries of inherited retirement plans and IRA’s to convett those inherited accounts to a Roth IRA.  Notice 2008-30 provides guidance about the distribution provisions of the Pension Protection ACt of 2006.  Prior to this Notice, only spousal beneficiaries had this option, via the spousal IRA rollover privilege.  Non-spouses […]

Trustee Allowed to Create SNT After Death of Testator

No Comments Special Needs

A New York trial court recently approved a trustee’s petition to reform his deceased father’s trust in order to protect his disabled sister’s Medicaid benefits. In Matter of Newman (2008 NY Slip Op 50127, Jan. 22, 2008). When he died in 1988, William Newman established a trust in his will for his disabled daughter. The […]

Deficient Nursing Homes Listed

No Comments Elder Law

The federal Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) has released the complete list of U.S. nursing homes that have failed to meet safety and quality standards for care. The list, which identifies 131 "Special Focus Facilities" that require additional oversight, follows the release in November 2007 of a list of 54 such facilities. At […]

Planning for the New “Zero Percent” Tax Bracket

No Comments Estate Planning

This article addresses a law change that is important to all wealth planning professionals and their clients. Beginning January 1, 2008 and continuing through at least 2010, a zero tax rate may apply to long-term capital gain and dividend income that would otherwise be taxed at the regular 15% and/or 10% rates. The new zero […]

Undue Influence in Trust Amendment Results in Attorneys Fees

No Comments Elder Law

The Oklahoma Supreme Court has ruled that the nearly disinherited step-grandchildren of an elderly decedent are entitled to attorneys fees in their action to set aside a trust amendment that was obtained through undue influence. Corr v. Smith (Okla., No. 102687, Feb. 12, 2008).

Seniors Need to File Tax Return to Get Rebate Check

No Comments News & Updates

Seniors can benefit from the economic stimulus law enacted on February 13, 2008, but they need to file an income tax return. Seniors, disabled veterans, and veterans’ widows will receive $300 payments if they earned $3,000 in Social Security or veterans’ disability benefits in 2007. In addition, workers who earned at least $3,000, but not […]

Supreme Court Says Individuals Can Sue Over 401(k) Losses

No Comments News & Updates

 In a unanimous decision, the Supreme Court on Tuesday ruled that employees can sue their employers to recover loses from the mismanagement of a 401(k) plan. The decision, a reversal of the lower court, has implications for the more than 50 million individuals who have more than $3 trillion invested in retirement plans. James LaRue […]

Exciting New Developments in Buy-Sell Planning

No Comments Estate Planning

This article examines exciting new developments in business succession planning – specifically, the use of LLCs or partnerships to own life insurance for buy-sell planning purposes.  Such a structure obtains the advantages of cross-purchase and stock redemption buy-sell agreements without many of the disadvantages of either traditional structure.  This development is significant to all wealth […]

Ethical Wills – Passing along more than your stuff.

No Comments Estate Planning

Stephanie West Allen has an excellent post on her blog on the use of ethical wills.  Ethical wills attempt to convey ideals and values to future generations, rather than simply passing on an individual’s personal belongings.  In our office, we refer to this type of planning as Legacy Planning, and attempt to incorporate this planning […]

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