Top Lessons for Baby Boomers in Estate Planning

Estate Planning for Boomers

The baby boomer generation has concerns that are different from Generation X and definitely different concerns than millenials.  Given the sheer size of this generation, it is not surprising that they have additional concerns that would affect their entire generation in a way that other generations just cannot see.  See the estate planning tips below.

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The Most Important Estate Planning Issue Boomers Need To Address

If you’re like me, with parents who are retired but still very self-sufficient, concerns about elder financial abuse or my Boomer parents’ inability to handle their own affairs is seemingly something that THEIR generation needs to worry about, not me. But as I reflect this Mother’s Day on how fortunate I am to still have both parents living (and quite robustly) into their mid-60’s, I realize that this issue is no longer something for Other People. I need to have these conversations with my mom and dad right now while they are still operating at their best. While I dread the day that things change, acting like it won’t happen won’t make it any easier when one or both of them do need additional help.

Living Well and Living Longer

By the year 2050, it is estimated that 1 out of every 5 Americans will be over the age of 65, with people aged 85+ the fastest growing demographic in the nation. The good news is that people are living longer, even with chronic diseases that used to lead to early death. (92% of seniors are living with at least one chronic disease; 77% with two or more.)

The challenge is that this requires different planning than the traditional practice of simply having a power of attorney in place to help in case of incapacity and making sure the will is up-to-date to include the intended heirs. As this demographic continues to grow, so will instances of fraud and financial abuse of seniors. As approximately 3.5 million Baby Boomers enter retirement each year, the time to make sure your estate planning documents protect you or your parents from fraud and abuse is now. In fact, experts recommend making the bulk of these major financial decisions by age 50.

Beyond the Basics

The big issue here is that when most estate plans are created, particularly with married couples, both spouses are of very sound mind and the natural inclination is simply to name each other as agents in case of incapacity. This is fine, but it’s important to make sure that there are contingent situations addressed as well. For example, what happens if they divorce? Between 1990 and 2010, the divorce rate doubled for people over the age of 50 and more than doubled for those over 65. Or alternatively, consider a case where neither spouse is incapacitated in terms of being unable to function in daily life, but both need assistance with things like paying bills due to declining writing abilities from Parkinson’s or arthritis.

Having a trusted person named in legal documents to help with those things ahead of time is the best way to make sure that finances are protected without having to give up complete control. So how do you make sure that you, your parents or other aging loved ones have the right plans in place BEFORE they’re needed? Here are some tips and things to consider.

Estate Planning Lawyers in Leawood

Estate Planning is all about peace of mind. What estate planning is all about is discovering the right tools to execute your standard needs. We do this utilizing the most up to date tools so that we can prepare a customized strategy at the most affordable possible cost.
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The Eastman Law Firm is an estate planning law firm. We concentrate on estate planning so that you can be guaranteed that you are getting the most as much as date techniques. We train extensively so that we can provide the specific right match for your wants and desires. We do not require everybody into a single mold. Instead, we attempt and make sure that everybody is treated with the most personalized solution that best fulfills their needs.

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The Eastman Law Firm
Estate planning attorneys, focusing on Wills, Trusts and Probate law.
4901 W. 136th Street, Ste. 240
Leawood
KANSAS (KS)
66224
United States

Phone: (913) 908-9113

Hours:
Mon-Sat 8am – 5:30pm

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Blue Springs location at:

1200 NW S Outer Rd.
Blue Springs, MO 64015.
Call Jerry at (816)224-3133

See our directory page here and here.

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Probate Lessons from Prince

Probate Lessons that Prince taught us

The death of Prince has saddened all of us that grew up in the 80’s listening to his music.  Unfortunately, I am further saddened now that he has passed without a will.  Thus, a lot of his estate will now go to projects other than what he probably wanted.  The biggest losers are the charities that he supported so generously during his life.  It’s a shame, really.

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Like most Americans, I was shocked and saddened by the death of Prince. I liked Prince in middle school and high school, but in college his music became the soundtrack to my life. Unfortunately for all of us, collectively mourning musicians has become all too commonplace in the last year. And at first, I was simply one of those fans who couldn’t imagine a world without Prince in it.

Initial reports made note of Prince’s conflict with and criticism of the music industry and his role as a champion of artistic freedom. Notably, when fans went to Spotify to celebrate Prince’s life by listening to his music, they were unable to find it. That is because in recent years, Prince gained control of his music rights, which allowed him to remove his work from digital streaming services. This was a man who understood the value of control!

As the stories developed in the wake of Prince’s death, I was so happy to hear that, in addition to being a musical genius, Prince was a philanthropist. According to reports, he supported civil rights causes, education and even made anonymous gifts to strangers who were in need. The fact that he did not boast about his good deeds, made me like him even more.

But then the story took the worst possible turn for this estate planning attorney. The news came out last week ” Prince had no will! In response to a petition filed by Prince’s sister, a Carver County judge appointed Bremer Trust as a special administrator for Prince’s estate. This was an emergency response so that there is someone legally responsible to manage Prince’s assets and business.

How could a man who fought so hard to re-gain control over his musical legacy not have created a plan for it after he died? How could a man with a philanthropic heart not have cemented his charitable legacy with testamentary gifts? Et tu, Prince?

Still in disbelief that Prince was without an estate plan, I started dreaming up other hypotheticals that would make sense for the man who was so mysterious to all. How amazing would it be if he had established a foundation that was not directly connected to himself to continue his legacy as he did when he was alive, anonymously? Or what if his funds were funneled through a corporation, which left nothing in his individual name? A testament that the artist was true to his creative genius and cared less about the fortune it provided him.

Believe me, I understand that estate planning requires us to acknowledge our mortality and that can be difficult, if not impossible, for some. I understand that we are all busy and estate planning often falls to the bottom of the to-do list. But I can’t help thinking that when Prince failed to write his wishes down, he irrevocably lost the ability to make a game-changing difference in organizations that he held so dear during his lifetime. And this would have made him immortal.

Estate Planning Lawyers in Leawood

Estate Planning is all about peace of mind. What estate planning is all about is finding the right devices to execute your standard requirements. We do this making use of the most up to date devices so that we can prepare a customized plan at the least expensive possible cost.
http://ift.tt/1SNCdzw
The Eastman Law Firm is an estate planning law firm. We focus on estate planning so that you can be assured that you are getting the most up to date techniques. We train extensively so that we can offer the precise right match for your desires and desires. We do not require everyone into a single mold. Instead, we attempt and make sure that everybody is treated with the most personalized solution that best fulfills their requirements.

http://ift.tt/1JU4Bfo


The Eastman Law Firm
Estate planning attorneys, focusing on Wills, Trusts and Probate law.
4901 W. 136th Street, Ste. 240
Leawood
KANSAS (KS)
66224
United States

Phone: (913) 908-9113

Hours:
Mon-Sat 8am – 5:30pm

Blue Springs location at:

1200 NW S Outer Rd.

Blue Springs, MO 64015.

Call Jerry at (816)224-3133

See our directory page here and here.

Five Benefits of Establishing a Revocable Trust

Revocable Living Trust

Below is a great article on some benefits to establishing a revocable trust.  This article has a slightly different take on it than our typical point of view as it is written by an immigration attorney.  Our current society really has some different things that we must take into consideration, and your estate plan needs to reflect that.  It used to be simple – just pass your real estate and some personal effects and you are done.  Take a look and then feel free to call us with your thoughts, comments, etc.

The Eastman Law Firm.

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Leawood estate planning attorneys

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Five benefits of establishing a revocable living trust

THERE is never the perfect time to think about who you would like to inherit from your estate in case you pass away or at least who among your closest friends (BFFs) and family members are even deserving of inheriting from your estate. In doing so, you should also think about which vehicle you plan to use in implementing your estate plan. One of the best vehicle in implementing your estate plan is a revocable living trust. Five major benefits of establishing a revocable living trust are:

Your estate can avoid the time, cost, and hassle of going through the probate court process.

If you pass away without a will (intestate) in California, one of your close family would have to file a petition in probate court to probate your estate. Your estate will be divided and distributed according to the California probate code rules of intestate succession. Even if you have a will when you pass away, your family would still need to file a petition in probate court if your estate is worth over $150,000 and go through the probate process. This can become a circus if certain beneficiaries contest the validity of the Will or the distribution of the estate. Your estate will pay for attorney’s fees, probate referee fees, appraisers and other experts, CPA fees, etc. If people contest the case, your estate would end up paying legal fees to defend the estate in litigation. The entire process can take anywhere from 9 months to years depending on the contentiousness of the probate case.

With a revocable living trust, your trustee or successor trustee if you were the initial trustee, would administer the trust and distribute the estate according to the trust document without having to open a probate court case. If the trust is funded with all your assets, it is possible to administer and distribute the trust assets without any Court involvement at all. This process is a lot faster than going through probate.

Your estate is not public record

When you file a probate case, the public has access to your probate case file. The public will know the assets of the estate including the values of those assets. If the Will is admitted into probate, the terms of the Will is open to public scrutiny.

Establishing a revocable living trust makes your estate affairs private. Strangers do not have access to the terms of your living trust. Only certain beneficiaries and possible heirs can request a copy of the revocable living trust after you pass away.

You can dictate who will inherit from your estate

If you pass away without a Will, your estate will be divided and distributed in Probate Court following the rules of intestate succession in the California probate code. Certain relatives will be entitled to a share of your estate even if you feel they are not deserving. By establishing a revocable living trust, you can designate who you want to inherit from your estate. You can designate what and how much each one will received from your estate after you pass away. The assets distributed to each beneficiaries does not have to be equal. The people you designate as beneficiaries of your living trust does not even have to be close family members. You can designate anyone as a beneficiary, with certain exceptions, of your estate.

You can structure your estate to minimize estate taxes

If your estate is valued above the estate tax exemption, establishing a trust can allow you to divide up your estate into smaller sub trusts to minimize the overall estate tax effect on your estate. It allows you to set up a vehicle for certain charitable giving which carries tax advantage and asset protection. You can choose who will administer your estate after your death When you establish a revocable trust, you can appoint someone else as trustee or you can appoint a successor trustee if you are the initial trustee. The trustee will be administering (managing) the trust after you pass away without a need to open a probate court case. This allows for continuity in operating the trust and the efficient and cost effective distribution of estate assets. If you are concerned about whether you can trust any family members as your trustee, you can appoint an institution as a professional trustee to carry out the terms of the declaration of trust. These type of trustee services are often offered by banks, financial institutions, wealth management firms, and business management firms for a reasonable fee. This minimizes conflicts within the family and prevents negligence and wrong doing by inexperienced family members.
* * * Attorney Kenneth Ursua Reyes is a Certified Family Law Specialist. He was President of the Philippine American Bar Association. He is a member of both the Family law section and Immigration law section of the Los Angeles County Bar Association. He has extensive CPA experience prior to law practice. LAW OFFICES OF KENNETH REYES, P.C. is located at 3699 Wilshire Blvd., Suite 747, Los Angeles, CA, 90010. Tel. (213) 388-1611 or e-mail kureyeslaw@gmail.com or visit our website at Kenreyeslaw.com

Estate Planning Lawyers in Leawood

Estate Planning is really about peace of mind. What estate planning is everything about is discovering the right devices to execute your basic requirements. What that means is that we make use of the most sophisticated legal files to effectively execute your desires. We customize each and every strategy so that you get precisely what you want. We do this using the most current devices so that we can prepare a customized strategy at the lowest possible cost. Kindly call us today with any concerns.
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The Eastman Law Firm is an estate planning law firm. We focus on estate planning so that you can be assured that you are getting the most up to date techniques.

http://ift.tt/1JU4Bfo


The Eastman Law Firm
Estate planning attorneys, focusing on Wills, Trusts and Probate law.
4901 W. 136th Street, Ste. 240
Leawood
KANSAS (KS)
66224
United States

Phone: (913) 908-9113

Hours:
Mon-Sat 8am – 5:30pm

Blue Springs location at:

1200 NW S Outer Rd.

Blue Springs, MO 64015.

Call Jerry at (816)224-3133

See our directory page here and here.

Estate Planning in the Digital Age Part 2

Planning for Digital Assets

Below is a great article on estate planning in this digital age.  This follows our article from last week on the same subject.  Our current society really has some different things that we must take into consideration, and your estate plan needs to reflect that.  It used to be simple – just pass your real estate and some personal effects and you are done.  But what do you do with reward points?  What about your social profiles?  What happens if you have an online-based business.  Take a look and then feel free to call us with your thoughts, comments, etc.

The Eastman Law Firm.

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Leawood estate planning attorneys

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Digital estate planning guide

Reports are that musician Prince died without leaving a will. You may not have millions in assets, but have you acted to take care of your estate and your heirs after you pass away? If so, have you considered the digital aspects of your legacy?

Technology has required a change in end-of-life planning. Many important bits of information are stored online or in the cloud that spouses or heirs can find themselves locked out of due to a lack of password. It is also not practical to change a will every time you change a password.

New companies have sprung up to take advantage of this need. Digital estate planners help you take care of all of your end-of-life planning, while compiling the necessary passwords and digital footprints that you wish to pass on to others. With names like Everplans.com, Final Roadmap, Planned Departure, and The Digital Beyond, these sites offer comprehensive services to ensure that important information is passed down to the proper parties and that your wishes are clearly noted and accessible.

Digital estate planners offer a useful combination of convenience and security. They allow you to upload all of the typical documents such as wills, health care directives, and trusts. You can also lay out and store plans for anything else you want to be addressed after death like the details of your funeral (to the extent you want to dictate them), the disposition of all your online accounts (financial and social), appraisals and dispositions of family heirlooms, important photos, and details of family genealogy.

Even day-to-day details could be included — for example, to help heirs handle a home that is passed down. How many bills are there, and where are they routed? Where are the water and gas shutoffs? Is there important maintenance information such as roof replacement or foundation piers that will be important in assessing the home’s value? A bit of pre-emptive planning now could save your heirs a lot of time, and potentially keep your home intact.

Digital planning sites allow you to choose who has access to your information and when they can access it (currently, at some future date, or upon your death). Be sure to keep this information current, and let your chosen designees know about the site and that you have chosen them as one of the guardians of your information.

There is one potential downfall of digital estate planning — the long-term viability of the company that you choose. It is wise to keep a backup copy of the most important online documents such as your will, but remember to update both the online and backup copies at the same time. Otherwise, you may have two versions of your paperwork and confusion (and probably legal fees) will ensue. Remember to let at least one person know that the documents exist and where they are being kept.

Before you dive into the world of digital estate planning, we suggest that you take time to reflect on your wishes and discuss them with your family. These sites will ask in-depth questions that you really do not want to decide on in the spur of the moment. Do not forget to consult with a lawyer on all areas that require legal assistance, such as wills, business succession plans, or intellectual property holdings. Take special care with your health care directives and other end-of-life requests.

Consider if a digital planning site can meet your end-of-life needs. You can save your family from having to make incredibly difficult decisions under stress.

Estate Planning Lawyers in Leawood

Estate Planning is all about peace of mind. What estate planning is all about is finding the right devices to execute your fundamental requirements. We do this making use of the most up to date devices so that we can prepare a personalized plan at the lowest possible cost.
http://ift.tt/1Tqr1oZ
The Eastman Law Firm is an estate planning law practice. We focus on estate planning so that you can be assured that you are getting the most up to date methods.

http://ift.tt/1JU4Bfo


The Eastman Law Firm
Estate planning attorneys, focusing on Wills, Trusts and Probate law.
4901 W. 136th Street, Ste. 240
Leawood
KANSAS (KS)
66224
United States

Phone: (913) 908-9113

Hours:
Mon-Sat 8am – 5:30pm

Blue Springs location at:

1200 NW S Outer Rd.

Blue Springs, MO 64015.

Call Jerry at (816)224-3133

See our directory page here and here.