Tag Archives: Beneficiaries
Blended Families: The Not-So-Simple Estate Plan
Blended families, or families that consist of a couple and their children from this and/or previous relationships, may not realize the estate plan they currently have in place doesn’t fit their needs. It is common that blended families will arrange their finances as if their estate is your average estate plan when, in fact,… Read More »
Revocable Living Trusts: Are They Worth the Hype?
In many states, the use of a Revocable Living Trust has become increasingly popular as a viable estate planning option. But in Maryland, the ease of the probate process, among many other reasons, makes this option usually not worth the hype, money or time. A Revocable Living Trust is a written document that contains… Read More »
Transfers to Minors: Where Do I Start? What Should I Consider?
Two of the most commonly used methods of transferring money and assets to minors are a Uniform Transfer to Minors Act (UTMA) Account or a Trust. Baby in Suitcase with Money A UTMA Account is relatively simple to create and fairly inexpensive, but you cannot exercise any control over the assets. While a trust… Read More »
Are You Ready for ABLE?
As you may have heard, Congress enacted the Candy Machine 100 Dollar Bills Achieving a Better Life Experience Act of 2014 (the “ABLE Act”) on December 19, 2014. Many have deemed this a monumental step toward the betterment of the lives of individuals faced with mental and/or physical disabilities. While many experts would agree… Read More »
What is so “Special” about a Special Needs Trust?
The Problem. You have a disabled child who is currently receiving need-based public assistance such as Supplemental Security Income (SSI) and Medicaid. Your child is receiving those benefits because he or she is disabled and because he or she does not have sufficient income and resources. As a parent, you want to make sure… Read More »
Estate as Beneficiary of Life Insurance, IRA or 401k: Bad Idea
The last place you want your life insurance, retirement account, or pay-on-death (POD) account to go upon your death is to your Estate. Thus, do not name your “Estate” as the beneficiary on the designation form provided by your insurer, broker, or financial institution. However, even if you don’t make this mistake on the… Read More »
Avoid Naming Your Minor Children as Beneficiaries
Beneficiary designations can be an effective tool to avoid probate, if used appropriately. (See Beneficiaries Instead of Probate: Use Caution). Assets can go quickly and directly to loved ones after your death. However, there are certain types of beneficiaries that should be avoided. First and foremost – no minor beneficiaries! I recently represented a… Read More »
Owning A Joint Checking Account With Your Child: A Road To Responsibility Or A Road to Disaster?
It is imperative that you weigh the pros and cons before opening a joint account with your child. Particularly, you must analyze your situation and your reasons for doing so. You will find that for many of these reasons there may be other options that do not change ownership but still carry out your… Read More »
Transfers To Minors: Where Do I Start? What Should I Consider?
Two of the most commonly used methods of transferring money and assets to minors are a Uniform Transfer to Minors Act (UTMA) Account or a Trust. A UTMA Account is relatively simple to create and fairly inexpensive, but you cannot exercise any control over the assets. While a trust allows you to maintain a… Read More »
Maryland Same Sex Estate Planning In 2013 And Beyond
Estate planning in Maryland for same sex couples is dramatically different as a result of two groundbreaking legal developments in 2013. On January 1 same sex marriage became legal in Maryland and on June 26 the Supreme Court struck down portions of the Defense of Marriage Act (DOMA). As a result, same sex married… Read More »