Notes

Estate Planning with Florida Homestead Property Caution Required

Estate Planning Issues

Many people are familiar with Florida’s tax exemption for homestead property which is one of the benefits of becoming a Florida resident. Florida residents are entitled to a $50,000 exemption from the value of their property for the annual real estate tax...

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Cooking Up an Estate Plan

Trustee Issues

Estate planning is an opportunity for people to consider their lifetime goals and needs. It is also an important tool that can be used to determine how their assets will be transferred during their lifetime and at death.

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Is it Time for Your Estate Plan Check Up

Estate Planning Issues

When does a person think about creating or updating his or her estate plan?  Typically at a time of crisis or urgency, such as a negative health diagnosis, a death in the family, an upcoming lengthy trip or, in our experience, right before our clients head back up north for the summer.

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Estate Planning for Second Marriage

Estate Planning Issues

People remarrying for the second (or third, etc.) time in Florida without a Prenuptial Agreement may be allowing the State of Florida to make some, most, or perhaps all of their estate planning decisions for them.

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Celebrity Estate Plans

Estate Planning Issues

Celebrity lifestyles typically receive an inordinate amount of attention from the media. Frequently there are lessons to be learned, either bad (i.e. substance abuse) or good (i.e. charitable causes). Deaths of celebrities are also widely covered and often have lessons to teach us from the manner of their deaths

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Advising the Trustee - Issues for the Financial Advisor to Consider

Trustee Issues

Responsibilities of fiduciaries, whether they act as Trustees, Guardians or Personal Representatives, has never been more complicated, with more duties and areas of specific responsibility. Similarly, there has never been a time when fiduciaries are more at risk of personal liability for failure to understand and document their responsibilities. In fact, fiduciary litigation has evolved over the last decade into a significant area of potential liability for the unwary fiduciary.

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Thoughts on Trustee Selection - Duties, Responsibilities and Liability

Trustee Issues

Living Trusts have been the estate planning technique of choice for the moderate sized estate plan for many years. 

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Family Members as Successor Trustees - DeMello v. Buckman

Trustee Issues

Many individuals believe that their children and spouses are the perfect choices to act as successor Trustees after the owner’s death or incapacity. However, family dynamics, such as second marriages or issues between siblings or their spouses, frequently make this choice costly – both financially and in terms of personal relationships.

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Personalized Estate Planning for Special Circumstances

Beneficiary Designation Issues

Estate planning is a very personalized process because of each individual’s unique needs and circumstances. Personal situations may require specialized planning and drafting, and it is important that your estate planning attorney is made aware of these needs and circumstances so that they may be addressed.

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Use Care with IRA Beneficiary Designations

Beneficiary Designation Issues

In the last few years, the IRS has created some “taxpayer-friendly” rules for Individual Retirement Account beneficiary designations. In general, these benefits relate to over what time frame your beneficiary is required to withdraw funds from your IRA and realize taxable income.

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