Beneficiaries

News & Analysis as of

Long-Awaited DHS Regulation to Ease Job Portability Announced

The final regulation, which will take effect on January 17, 2017, clarifies USCIS policies and improves job portability for highly skilled foreign workers....more

CMS Releases 2017 Medicare Deductible and Coinsurance Amounts

CMS has announced Medicare Part A and B beneficiary cost sharing amounts for 2017. With regard to Part A, the 2017 deductible for hospital inpatient admissions for the first 60 days of care will be $1,316, followed by $329...more

CMS Seeks Input on Ways to Accelerate Medicaid Home and Community-Based Services

CMS is requesting public input on policy options it can consider to accelerate the provision of home and community-based services (HCBS) to Medicaid beneficiaries. Note that while supporting increased availability of quality...more

Federal Court Dismisses Beneficiary’s Breach Of Fiduciary Duty Claim For Lack of Jurisdiction

In Strouse v. Strouse, a beneficiary sued an executor of an estate for breach of fiduciary duty. No. 4:16cv707, 2016 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 155630 (E.D. Tex. September 27, 2016). Federal district courts are courts of limited...more

4 Must-Have Documents When Planning Your Estate

President Abraham Lincoln. Civil rights activist Martin Luther King, Jr. Rock guitarist Jimi Hendrix. Eccentric billionaire Howard Hughes. Singer/songwriter Bob Marley. NFL quarterback Steve McNair. Singer/songwriter...more

The Georgia Superior Court/Probate Court Dance

No procedural or jurisdictional issues in Georgia fiduciary litigation can cause as much headache as the sometimes exclusive and sometimes concurrent jurisdiction of the superior and probate courts. The Georgia Court of...more

Do It Yourself Wills: Will They Lead to More Litigation?

Here’s my prediction: do it yourself wills, also referred to as “homemade wills” or “online wills” or “internet wills” (I’ll refer to them in this blog post as “DIY Wills”) will result in a significant (though not massive)...more

When The Power To Amend Doesn’t Actually Mean You Can Amend

Circumstances, laws, and taxes all change. And, when they do, many settlors don’t want their beneficiaries to have to go into court to get permission to roll with the changes. That’s why you often find a trust provision...more

The Repeal of the New Jersey Estate Tax: Is it Now Safe to Move Back to New Jersey?

On October 14, 2016, Governor Christie signed into law a transportation funding bill that also included the repeal of the New Jersey Estate Tax. Here is what you need to know: - The New Jersey Estate Tax repeal will be...more

Seventh Circuit Holds that Insurers Cannot Challenge Policies for Lack of Insurable Interest

On October 12, 2016, the United States Court of Appeals for the Seventh Circuit, in an opinion authored by Judge Richard Posner, affirmed a district court decision finding that securities intermediary U.S. Bank, N.A. is...more

Executor Loses Out on Fees Due to Section 6166 Lien

A personal representative/executor for an estate granted a special estate tax lien under Code §6324A to the U.S. as part of a Section 6166 election to defer payment of federal estate tax. At the time, the executor had been...more

Texas Fiduciary Litigation Update 2015-2016

David F. Johnson, lead writer for the Texas Fiduciary Litigator blog, spoke at the Tarrant County Probate Bar’s Litigation Seminar and presented “Fiduciary Litigation Update 2015-2016.” David discussed recent Texas precedent...more

Choosing an Investment Adviser for a Special Needs Trust

Trustees of special needs trusts have a duty to properly manage the funds in their care. However, most trustees, especially non-professional ones, are not sophisticated investors and they should not be directly managing the...more

Washington’s New Trustee Delegation Law: Allowing Fiduciaries to More Easily Keep Businesses in the Family

If you are a family business owner in Washington who wants to place control of your business in the hands of a trustee until your beneficiaries are ready to assume control, or for other reasons, a recent change in Washington...more

Insight on Estate Planning - October/November 2016

Gift giving made easy - Annual exclusion reduces your taxable estate - How can you reduce the size of your taxable estate? There are many ways to accomplish this objective, including the use of irrevocable trusts...more

Texas Fiduciary Litigation Update: 2015-2016

The fiduciary field in Texas is a constantly changing area. Over time, statutes change, and Texas courts interpret those statutes, the common law, and parties’ documents differently. This paper is intended to give an update...more

When Will Trust Assets Be Considered Available Assets When Applying For Medicaid In Connecticut?

A recent Connecticut Supreme Court decision, Pikula v. Department of Social Services (SC 19533; released May 10, 2016), confirms the guidelines for determining if trust assets are considered “available assets” for purposes of...more

Jointly-Owned Property: Not Always the Right Plan

For any number of reasons, you have decided to add a partner, child, or close friend as a joint owner on one or more of your assets. Perhaps you are concerned about becoming disabled, and want to know that your loved one can...more

Deposit Insurance Review: Improving the Current Framework

On September 16, 2016, Canada’s Department of Finance (Finance Canada) published for comment the Deposit Insurance Review (Consultation Paper). The Consultation Paper ensues from the Budget 2014 announcement of the launch of...more

The MOON Notification is Coming: CMS Publishes Final Changes

CMS is moving forward with implementing the Medicare Outpatient Observation Notice (MOON) as announced in its FY 2017 IPPS Final Rule [PDF] on August 2, 2016, and published in the Federal Register on August 22, 2016 (Final...more

Who Would Inherit Darth Vader’s Estate?

Who would be the beneficiary of the estate of Darth Vader? The answer is more than just an exercise in Star Wars fiction; in fact, the answer can teach us important lessons about estate disputes in our real world....more

IRS Attempts Collection Against Surviving Spouse and Marital Deduction Property

In a recent U.S. District Court case from the Southern District of California, the court ruled on several motions to dismiss relating to the IRS' attempt to impose liability on a surviving spouse for estate taxes on the...more

Medicaid Managed Care Transitions’ Impact On Brain Injury Waiver Populations

As of June 2015, 24 states utilize a traumatic or acquired brain injury waiver,1 as provided under section 1915(c) of the Social Security Act, which are designed to help individuals with traumatic brain injury (TBI) live in...more

Congressional Health Policy Hearings, Markups Resume After Summer Break

Congress has returned from recess, and health care policy continues to be on the agenda. The following health-related hearings and markups were held this week: ..The House Ways and Means Committee approved H.R. 5942, a...more

Court Holds That Trust No Longer Owned Vehicle Because It Allowed Beneficiary’s Wife To Drive It

In In the Interest of H.D.V., a husband appealed from a bench trial in a divorce proceeding. No. 05-15-00421-CV, 2016 Tex. App. LEXIS 9520 (Tex. App.—Dallas August 26, 2016, no pet. history). His mother had set up a trust for...more

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