News & Blog

Aging Parents – How to Talk to Them About Estate Planning

Broaching the subject of estate planning with our aging parents can be difficult. Both sides may be reluctant to discuss difficult topics involving final affairs. It can be much more difficult however, if your loved ones pass without a plan in place and to watch their legacy be destroyed. The reality is without an estate […]

TRUSTS TO PROTECT AGAINST LAWSUITS, CREDITORS, PREDATORS, AND DIVORCE

Any significant asset can be threatened by creditors, predators, and major relationship shifts like divorce. A good trust will take into account the highly specific dangers faced by your circumstances—both during your life, and when you’ve passed that asset on to your heirs. Suppose you own an apartment building and you have hired somebody to […]

Assuming All Trusts Are the Same

If you read through Mistake #10, you now understand how a mere “last will and testament” does not provide the vital mechanisms offered by a living trust. A will can be partly disregarded by a judge or indefinitely delayed by probate. A living trust offers you the chance to bypass many of the frustrations of […]

WHAT IS A LIVING TRUST, EXACTLY?

Much of the rest of this book will be about constructing a good living trust. But what is a living trust, exactly? As I explained briefly earlier in the book, you can think of a living trust as a kind of vessel, a bucket which you create, and into which you place your stuff. Some […]

New Year, New (or Updated!) Estate Plan

2019 is here and it’s the year to finally tackle creating your estate plan so your family, loved ones, and legacy are protected after you pass. Is this something you have been putting off? Are you wondering why you need an estate plan? Are you sure your existing plan includes all of life’s changes? Here […]

Estate Planning – Don’t Forget About Your Digital Assets

When we think of our estates passing on after we die, our houses, cars, money, and children may spring to mind. Most people don’t think about their cloud storage, social media accounts, internet domains, or online investments. Your digital assets need to be as much a part of your estate planning as your other assets. […]

PROBATE IS DANGEROUSLY PUBLIC

Like Bob Jr. from our earlier post, most people are shocked to learn that probate offers the family no privacy whatsoever. Literally, anyone can go to any court in America, walk up to the probate filing window, and say, “I’d like to see such and such file number.” The clerk will turn over a file […]

CalAble Accounts: What You Need to Know

In December 2018, CalAble Savings Plans opened to the public. Individuals who became disabled below the age of twenty-six are now able to invest in a tax-free account, without losing their SSI or MediCal. A CalAble account is a savings and investment account. They can be opened by a disabled or blind individual, or on […]

MINOR CHILDREN PRESENT A SPECIAL PROBLEM – The Question of Guardianship

We continue our discussion of probate court today on the topic of probate court and minor children. The costs of probate will go up considerably if the succession involves orphaned minor children. But in that case, of course, more than money is at stake. When children are under eighteen, and no parent survives, the state […]