Estate and Elder Law

Recent Posts

David Shulman on Estate Planning: Facebook Allows Users to Designate a ‘Legacy Contact’ to Manage Their Account After Death
Posted on 3 Mar 2015 by David A. Shulman

Finally. For those who have been following, the issue of “digital assets” is a fast developing problem in the estate planning world. Putting aside for a moment who has the right to “inherit” your assets, the bigger problem with... Read More

Dedon on Estate Planning: Disposition of Tangible Personal Property in a Side Letter
Posted on 14 Feb 2014 by John Dedon

A common question asked by clients preparing their Wills is how to dispose of tangible personal property upon death. For example, I am asked, "I have jewelry and a coin collection, do I need to specify how those items are distributed among my children... Read More

Dedon on Estate Planning: Pets and Estate Planning
Posted on 3 Mar 2015 by John Dedon

Bella - A Tribute | Anyone who has not felt the sadness and loss from the death of a pet either has never owned a pet or is devoid of humanity. My three pound Yorkie, Bella (technically, my daughter's dog, but you know how that works), had neurological... Read More

Ask Liza: Annual Gifts and Lifetime Gifts
Posted on 14 Jun 2013 by Liza Weiman Hanks

Dear Liza, I would like to give my son $200k to upgrade homes. Can me and my wife each give $13,000 to my son, daughter in law, and two grand children? That would be $102,000, and then apply the remaining $98,000 to the unified tax credit. Can I write... Read More

McNees Insights on Estate Planning: Who Gets Your IRA? – 6 Common Mistakes
Posted on 10 Apr 2014 by McNees Wallace & Nurick LLC

By David M. Watts, Jr. | Do you want your heirs to have to chase after your 401K or IRA money? Many of us have a significant portion of our assets held in retirement plans, such as 401Ks and IRAs, and your Will does not control who gets your 401K or... Read More

Ask Liza: Capital Gains Taxes on Appreciated Property
Posted on 3 Mar 2015 by Liza Weiman Hanks

Dear Liza: My mother gave her house to my sister just before she passed away. My sister is going to sell the house. Do we have to pay taxes on that? If your mother’s house had appreciated in value between the time your mother purchased it, and her... Read More

David Shulman: Who Gets Paid If an Alleged Incapacitated Person Dies Before the Hearing? Nobody?
Posted on 14 Feb 2014 by David A. Shulman

By David Shulman I’m sure there are some independently wealthy attorneys out there who take all of their cases pro bono . Most of us though are hard-working schlubs like everyone else who while we love what we do, need to pay the bills too. When... Read More

Ask Liza: Are Wills Drafted In Other States Valid?
Posted on 24 May 2013 by Liza Weiman Hanks

Dear Liza: I would like to know if my wife and I had a will drawn up in Colorado and now reside in Arzonia do we need to have it redone? If your Will was valid in Colorado, it will be valid in Arizona. Both states require that a Will be in writing, be... Read More

John Dedon on Estate Planning: Kardashian Family Continues to Teach Estate Planning Lessons
Posted on 3 Nov 2015 by John Dedon

My March 30, 2015 Post, discussed how Kris Jenner, the matriarch of the Kardashian family, was confused about the difference between 1) her Will and the role of the Executor, and 2) her Living Will and the role of the agent. In an episode of "Keeping... Read More

Making Your Mark: Using a Fingerprint When a Testator Cannot Sign the Will
Posted on 6 Feb 2014 by Jennifer Hillman

By Jennifer F. Hillman, Esq. We have all seen the movies where an illiterate individual signs an important document with an “X”. Even literate clients may have difficulty signing a document due to a severe physical impairment. Compliance... Read More

John Dedon On Estate Planning: Preparing a Certificate of Trust
Posted on 3 Dec 2013 by John Dedon

Clients often ask about a Trust "Certificate" or "Certification." A Trust Certificate serves as a summary of the Trust provisions, and is designed to provide third parties, such as banks, insurance companies, or financial institutions... Read More

McNees Insights: Estate Planning for Digital Assets
Posted on 10 Apr 2014 by McNees Wallace & Nurick LLC

By Andrew S. Rusniak It is often said that the law lags behind technology. One area where this sentiment is particularly applicable is estate planning for digital assets. In a world where our lives are becoming ever more digital, many estate planning... Read More

John Dedon on Estate Planning: Good news on Estate Tax Exemption
Posted on 3 Nov 2015 by John Dedon

The IRS recently announced the inflation adjusted figures for gift and estate tax exemption amounts for 2016. The annual exclusion amount remains at $14,000. That is the amount that can be gifted to US citizens each year without eroding the per person... Read More