Analyzing Tax Returns for Estate Planning and Elder Law Issues and Opportunities

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I put this checklist together to assist estate planning professionals (i.e. accountants, financial advisors and planners, insurance agents, non-elder law attorneys, etc.) along with my clients and their families to spot potential issues and opportunities that should and could be addressed by attorneys specializing in elder law.

Obviously, there is too much information to properly cover in this document, so the goal is to alert professionals and their clients that a discussion needs to be started. What are covered here are highlights of issues that can be found, but it is certainly not exhaustive of the matter.

Many times clients come to elder law attorneys when it is too late for them to explore the entire range of planning options. Hopefully, with this checklist, the planning process will begin earlier for clients and their families, so that clients and their advisors can utilize all of the planning and benefits that are available.

I have decided to take this approach to raise these concerns for one simple reason: all of your clients should have a tax return to review. It is a common document that everyone is familiar with and allows a great opportunity to initiate discussions with clients of any age and income level. The earlier that a client and his or her family meets with a qualified elder law attorney, the sooner that planning to address these issues can begin.

I hope you find this checklist helpful in your own professional practice…and maybe even in your own personal lives.

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DISCLAIMER: Because of the generality of this update, the information provided herein may not be applicable in all situations and should not be acted upon without specific legal advice based on particular situations.

© Keith Miles | Attorney Advertising

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