Estate Planning

Estate Planning is a process where individuals prepare or plan for the settlement of their personal affairs in the event of incapacitation or death. Estate plans typically include provisions relating to the... more +
Estate Planning is a process where individuals prepare or plan for the settlement of their personal affairs in the event of incapacitation or death. Estate plans typically include provisions relating to the disposition of assets, guardianship of minor children, and appointment of representatives to make medical and financial decisions. Effective estate planning can decrease tax liability and facilitate the probate process.  less -
News & Analysis as of

Probate Inventory: A Public Listing of Assets

When I first posted about Prince’s estate, I did not intend to continue providing updates. However, as administration of the estate continues, more and more opportunities arise to discuss how things could have been handled...more

2017 – New Year, New Adjusted Lifetime Federal Estate and Gift Tax Exempt Amount

The annual federal exemption amount for the estate and gift tax has been adjusted to $5,490,000.00 per individual for 2017. This means a married couple will have a combined $10,980,000.00 in 2017. The $5,490,000.00...more

Are You Considering Remarrying in Your Senior Years?

Finding love later in life may be unexpected and exciting. The considerations are much different for an older couple with adult children and retirement plans than for a young couple just starting out. Before deciding on next...more

What Happens to your "Social Media" and other "Digital" Life when you Die?

Over the holidays, it’s likely that you or a loved one received some type of computer or device that connects to internet websites, e-mail and applications. Or that pictures were taken and stored on such a device, or that...more

Treasury Department Unofficial Statements on Proposed Section 2704 Regulations

There is a lot of uncertainty whether the Section 2704 proposed regulations will ever be finalized, either due to policy to be set by President-elect Trump, and/or Congressional efforts to block those regulations....more

Essay: The Inter Vivos Branch of the Worthier Title Doctrine

Change for good reason is most appropriate. Sometimes it is superb, but change for the sake of change is usually wrong. It is regrettable and unjustifiable that an old and beneficial principle of law has been challenged as no...more

The Emotional Charge of Guardianship: a Point of View from an Independent Guardian

A parent of young children feels incredible stress and sadness when their children fight. When healthy, the parent is capable of breaking up the fight or at least standing in between to force peace or at least stave off war....more

21st Century Cures Act Remedies Longstanding Special Needs Trust Issue

On December 13, 2016, President Obama signed the 21st Century Cures Act. One of the more relevant aspects of the law to estate and special needs planning is found in Section 5007 of the Act, which is called “Fairness in...more

Trusts and Estates Group News: Home Is Where You Hang Your Hat. But Where Are You Actually Domiciled?

Many Connecticut residents will own second homes for the purpose of enjoying a change of scenery for a portion of each calendar year. For example, some people might escape the cold of the Connecticut winter for the sunshine...more

Sharp as a Tack . . . Clear as a Bell

Very often, when the proponent of a will (and sometimes even the attorney-draftsperson or witness) is questioned about the decedent’s mental state and the decedent’s instructions, the reflexive response is that the decedent...more

Estate Tax Impact of Life Insurance Required by Divorce

Please see chart below for more information....more

Top Four Estate Disputes from 2016

With the end of 2016 upon us, now is a fitting time to look back at some of the top estate disputes from this past year. 2016 was a typical year in that, unsurprisingly, people continued to die and families continued to fight...more

iWill or iWon’t

Ever wondered what will happen to your Facebook page when you die? The California Legislature has recently weighed in. Effective as of January 1, 2017, California will have its first law to specifically address the handling...more

Trusts and Estates Group News: The Preservation of Family Business Wealth

It is often the case that a business owner has a significant portion of the family’s wealth invested in the business. It is often the intention of the owner to transfer that wealth to his or her children....more

Estate Planning Newsletter - December 2016

Hinshaw’s Estate Planning Newsletter includes reports on opportunities and challenges that may impact your estate plan. This publication is designed to keep our clients and friends aware of certain opportunities and...more

Some Not So Obvious Reasons to Have a Will

Many times I have heard the following questions from prospective clients: “If my things will pass to my spouse and children automatically, why do I need a Will?” or “My estate is not large enough to be subject to estate...more

Ron Aucutt’s “Top Ten” Estate Planning and Estate Tax Developments of 2016

In an always-anticipated annual tradition, Ronald Aucutt, a McGuireWoods partner and co-chair of the firm’s private wealth services group, has identified the following as the top ten estate planning and estate tax...more

House Held In Trust Lost Marital Asset Status

In the afterglow of a wedding, the spouses probably don’t immediately start thinking how the bliss they feel may end spectacularly and expensively. Chances are they may even start estate planning, thinking how they can...more

Estate Planning Resolutions for the New Year

For many of us, the start of a new year can be a time of empty commitment to self-improvement. Meaningful resolutions are infrequently made and rarely kept. Instead of purchasing a gym membership or pretending that we will...more

2016 Year-End Trusts & Estates Update

As 2016 comes to a close, we would like to share with you a number of recent developments affecting trust and estate planning that may be of interest: Final regulations restricting valuation discounts unlikely to be...more

Special Needs Trusts Through the Lens of a Financial Planner

I met recently with my friend and advisor, Lauren Pearson, CFP®, to learn more about Special Needs Trusts. Lauren is a managing director and partner at HighTower Twickenham, an industry leading wealth management firm. Lauren...more

T&E Litigation Newsletter - December 2016

The last several weeks have brought us two decisions in which issues of family law intersected with T&E issues. First, the decision in Heystek v. Duncan, Case No. 15-P-1201, 2016 Mass. App. Unpub. LEXIS 1113 (Nov. 21,...more

Update Beneficiary Designations After Divorce or Annulment

On July 1, 2015, the Florida Fourth District Court of Appeal held, with a few exceptions, upon entry of a final judgment of dissolution or annulment, any provision of a will that “affects” a former spouse is void under...more

Make Sure Your Estate Plan Doesn't Put Your Child at Risk

Most parents of children with special needs are well versed when it comes to the government benefits like Medicaid or Supplemental Security Income (SSI) that their child receives. Most know not to give the child any money...more

Powers of Attorney – How are the Chapter 56 Changes Playing Out?

In the Fall 2014 issue of McNees Insights – Estate Planning, my colleague Andrew Rusniak and I discussed Pennsylvania’s changes to the law governing Powers of Attorney (Act 95 of 2014, amending Chapter 56 of the Probate...more

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