New 529A Accounts for Severely Disabled Individuals

153833909Many are familiar with section 529 college savings accounts, from which tax-free distributions must be used for qualified higher education expenses. The “Achieving a Better Life Experience Act of 2014” or the “ABLE Act of 2014” adds a similar account under IRC §529A that individuals who become severely disabled before age 26 may establish to use for “qualified disability expenses,” which can include education, housing, and transportation. Continue reading

Notice of Incarcerated Beneficiaries: No More Splitting “Heirs”

489194765The law requiring notice of incarcerated heirs has just been extended to beneficiaries, too. Practitioners have long recommended giving notice of at least those incarcerated beneficiaries who might take property by intestate succession. But now it’s the law.

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Dead Man “Kwoking”: Estate Planning Property Transfers Can Trigger Title Insurance Nightmares

475902405Estate planning attorneys regularly advise their clients about the tax and other advantages of transferring real property to irrevocable trusts or similar estate planning vehicles. But they may not consider the potentially disastrous title insurance implications of such transfers. The original property owners may have had coverage under their policy, but—depending on the type of policy—once the property is transferred to the estate planning entity, the entity (i.e. trustee of the trust) isn’t the “insured” anymore and coverage could be lost. Continue reading

Supreme Court Takes Up Federal Right to Same-Sex Marriage

153140057From the former capital of the Confederacy in Richmond, Virginia, comes the spark for a Supreme Court decision that could extend same-sex marriage to all fifty states within a year. Continue reading

Tales of Hoffman: Postmortem Planning for Actor’s Estate

2013-07-catastrophe-122552905The tragic death of actor Philip Seymour Hoffman has given us an opportunity to consider his estate planning, with lessons and strategies for the rest of us. Continue reading

Estate Planning Is Not Just for the Rich and Famous

178889857The following is a guest blog post by April E. Frisby of Frisby Law. April is a lawyer in Orange County who practices business and securities transactional law, as well as estate planning. April is also an adjunct law professor at Whittier Law School.

It can be hard to get folks to think about estate planning—especially the younger ones in the beginning stages of their careers. They believe that there will be many changes in their life before end-of-life planning becomes necessary or they think they don’t have enough money to worry about it. Or, perhaps most risky, they think they can just pick up a form at a stationary store or print it from a website and they’ll be all set. Hopefully the following points will help you convince folks that they need your expertise to get an estate plan in place now! Continue reading

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