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Category: Trusts

Most Are Taking Social Security At The Wrong Time

A new report finds that almost no retirees are making financially optimal decisions about when to take Social Security and are losing out on more than $100,000 per household in the process. The average Social Security recipient would receive 9 percent more income in retirement if they made the financially optimal decision. When claiming Social … Continue reading

When You Should Update Your Estate Plan….

Life has a way of moving fast. People come and go. We succeed and we struggle. And the unexpected sometimes greets us at our doorstep. But what do these changes mean for an estate plan? When our circumstances change, we may wonder which changes are significant enough to merit a revision in our final wishes. … Continue reading

Why Was I Told To Disinherit My Spouse?

Unfortunately, one spouse will often become ill before the other. In the event that one spouse needs nursing home care, an attorney will often tell the well spouse, often known as a community spouse, to disinherit his or her spouse. Obviously, the thought of disinheriting a spouse is a very emotional and stressful moment in … Continue reading

What Is A Life Estate

The phrase “life estate” often comes up in discussions of Estate and Medicaid planning, but what exactly does it mean? A life estate is a form of joint ownership that allows one person to remain in a house until his or her death, when it passes to the other owner. Life estates can be used … Continue reading

Special Needs Trust Planning Success Story

A person who was referred by their neighbor who is an individual with special needs recently called our office.  The person’s son had special needs and the family was hoping to qualify him for public benefits (such as Medicaid and SSI), when they passed away.  The family attended a special needs trust workshop that we … Continue reading

Using a Donor-Advised Fund May Be a Way to Get a Charitable Tax Break Under the New Tax Law

Donor-advised funds are a growing trend in giving that may get more popular due to the new tax law. These funds allow you to donate money, receive a charitable tax deduction, and continue to grow the money until you are ready to distribute it to a charity or charities of your choice.  A donor-advised fund is … Continue reading

How to Deal With Student Loan Debt as You Age

The number of older Americans with student loan debt – either theirs or someone else’s — is growing. Sadly, learning how to deal with this debt is now a fact of life for many seniors heading into retirement. According to a study by the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau, the number of older borrowers increased by at least 20 percent … Continue reading

A Tax Break to Help Working Caregivers Pay for Day Care

Paying for day care is one of the biggest expenses faced by working adults with young children, a dependent parent, or a child with a disability, but there is a tax credit available to help working caregivers defray the costs of day care (called “adult day care” in the case of the elderly). In order to qualify … Continue reading

Getting Paid as a Family Caregiver Through Medicaid

Caring for an ailing family member is difficult work, but it doesn’t necessarily have to be unpaid work. There are programs available that allow Medicaid recipients to hire family members as caregivers. All 50 states have programs that provide pay to family caregivers. The programs vary by state, but are generally available to Medicaid recipients, … Continue reading

Report Ranks States on Nursing Home Quality and Shows Families’ Conflicted Views

A new report that combines nursing home quality data with a survey of family members ranks the best and worst states for care and paints a picture of how Americans view nursing homes. The website Care.com analyzed Medicare’s nursing home ratings to identify the states with the best and worst overall nursing home quality ratings. Using Medicare’s … Continue reading