If you have a family member who is suffering from some form of dementia, you know how financially difficult providing quality care can be. According to a study published this month in the New England Journal of Medicine, the financial burden on the nation as a whole is staggering, with the costs now exceeding those of both heart disease and cancer. [Read more…]
Why Single People in Worcester County Should Consider Estate Planning
When we typically think of estate planning, we see grandma and grandpa putting together a Will and possibly setting up some trusts for the following generations. It’s all about providing for our offspring, right? [Read more…]
Pet Trusts Arrive in Massachusetts
I’ve written about Pet Trusts in a previous blog. They have many benefits for pet owners concerned about what would happen should their animal outlive them. However, until recently, Pet Trusts were not available in Massachusetts. New Massachusetts legislation took effect on April 7th, 2011, bringing this important Estate Planning tool to the Bay State. The remainder of this week’s blog was edited from an article written by Attorney Gina Barry of Bacon Wilson, P.C. in Springfield. [Read more…]
Rodrigues Case and Pending Massachusetts Legislation Make Homestead Protection for Trusts a Reality (Finally!)
On February 23, 2010, the US Bankruptcy Court in Massachusetts finally did what the Massachusetts state legislature has been unable to do for years: the court ruled that the Massachusetts Homestead Exemption is applicable to an owner whose property is in a revocable trust. Since this decision, In re Rodrigues, Bankr. D. Mass. Case No. 09-11960-JNF, the legislature has been working to pass a new statute that will replace Massachusetts General Laws, chapter 188, the statute concerning homesteads. The legislature is very close to passing a new law. Today we will review the Rodrigues decision, the pending Massachusetts legislation, and how it may be beneficial to you. [Read more…]
What about Fluffy? Pet Trusts: Another Important Estate Planning Tool
It’s estimated that two-thirds of American households currently have at least one pet, a number that has steadily increased in the last 60 years. With more pets comes a growing industry devoted to helping Americans better care for, and even indulge, their pets, has developed. Businesses that provide pet day care, pet sitters, grooming, spa services, and even pet cemeteries have become common.
Many even consider pets part of their family, a sort of child, brother, sister, or at the very least, friend. Since so much love and attention is given to these fury and feathery companions, many wish to provide for their animals in the event that they become incapacitated or die before their pet. With family greed, skepticism, and fraud on the rise, many seek a better solution than hoping Junior will “do the right thing.” As a matter of fact, owner death and/or disability is one of the top reasons that animals end up in Shelters across the country. [Read more…]
Irrevocable Trusts & the Current Federal Estate Tax (IRC 1022), Friend or Foe?
The following is a repost of a blog recently written by Attorney Dale Krause of Krause Financial Services. Attorney Krause is also a fellow member of the National Academy of Elder Law Attorneys (NAELA).
An Irrevocable Trust can offer a grantor lifetime control over his or her assets of the trust is established with the following provisions:
- All taxable income shall be disbursed to the grantor;
- The grantor shall have the right to direct how the trust assets are held or reinvested; and
- The grantor shall have a limited power of appointment over the final distributions of the trust; this power shall be in favor of a limited class of beneficiaries, consisting of the grantor’s children and grandchildren; the disbursements do not have to be in equal amounts or shares. [Read more…]