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Articles Posted in Estate Planning

life-support-plus-300x193Under the most ideal of circumstances, discussions about end-of-life care decisions are difficult, uncomfortable and often thought of as a talk better suited for a later time. But as unsettling as it is, if now is not the time to have a plan in place about your health care wishes, then when is?

No one ever wants to think about the possibility of being incapacitated or in a terminal state.  But if that were to happen, would your loved ones know what your wishes are?  Would they know where you stand on being kept alive artificially?

Having your health care and end-of-life wishes documented and in place are important for not only your peace of mind but also for your loved ones who may be tasked with seeing your wishes are met.

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The Importance of Advance Healthcare Directives in a Pandemic

The COVID-19 pandemic has not only brought the world to a standstill. It has brought us face to face with our own mortality. The news headlines are filled with daily stories about the tragic loss of life and those stories make it clear that this virus is deadly to people of all ages and lifestyles.

A recent piece published by Dr. Asha Shajahan, a primary care physician in metro Detroit, poignantly conveyed the reality of life and death in a COVID-19 unit. Dr. Shajahan opened his piece with the following,

iStock_000026177458Small-300x281If we’re honest, most of us have spent some time in the last few weeks thinking about mortality—our own and that of our loved ones. It’s not surprising given the fact that we’re living through a pandemic that has caused unprecedented disruptions to our daily lives. We’re dealing with a lot of uncertainty, which can be scary. 

Being prepared is one of the most effective ways to alleviate anxiety caused by uncertainty. 

While none of us can hope to fully control the current situation, there are things each of us can do to help ensure that we have fewer things to worry about in case of dire emergency. 

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There is no perfect time to talk with your parents about their finances. No matter when you bring it up or how you broach the subject, it’s bound to be awkward for you—the adult child—and your parents. Be that as it may, having “The Money Talk” is a critical part of ensuring that everyone is prepared for whatever may come. 

Right now, such conversations may seem almost inappropriate. The entire global population is dealing with the frightening and life-changing experience of living with a pandemic. Our minds are focused on day-to-day needs and the swiftly changing news, not long-term financial planning. On the other hand, the reality of the situation is drawing attention to places where we might want to ensure a little more certainty, including addressing big questions about estate planning and other money matters. 

Why this is such an important conversation

By Colleen Masse

AdobeStock_46432121-300x290We’re all home for the foreseeable future and many of us find we have a little extra time for projects. My sister is cleaning out her closets, my friend is painting her living room, my son is taking online guitar lessons.

If you have the urge to get something accomplished while quarantined, I have a challenge for you: review your estate plan.

egg-300x300Do you know about the new changes that could affect your retirement accounts? Some are positive, others may require you to make some new planning decisions.

Either way, the goal of this new legislation is to improve retirement security for many Americans. And that’s a good thing.

The new law is called the SECURE Act, which stands for Setting Every Community Up for Retirement Enhancement. The legislation makes some substantial changes to the rules about retirement accounts, including IRAs and 401(k)s, that will have very direct effects on account owners and beneficiaries. 

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If a trust is part of your estate plan, you should pay attention to a new Connecticut law that went into effect January 1st.

Chances are you would not be interested in reading the recently adopted Connecticut Uniform Trust Code (UTC), which is over 100 pages long!  But there are provisions in this legislation that we feel you should be aware of.

Some of the changes provide you additional benefits of having a trust, and others may cause you to consider updating the trust you have in place.

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The loss of a pet is heartbreaking. But have you thought about what happens to your pet, when you die?

Your pets depend on you, they are loyal to you. They know they can count on you. You can only imagine their sense of loss when you’re no longer in their lives.

The Humane Society estimates that between 100,000 and 500,000 pets end up in shelters

AppleOrange_webBy Lara Schneider-Bomzer

So you’ve been doing your estate planning homework. You’ve learned that perhaps you should have a trust in addition to a Will.

But then you hear that there are different types of trusts!

In this blog post I’ll help you understand the difference between the two main trusts that you may want to consider: the revocable trust and irrevocable trust. Continue reading

AdobeStock_297406059-300x200We’re only a week or so into the New Year, but most of us are already steeling ourselves for the annual guilt trip about abandoned resolutions. It never fails. We start out with the best intentions, but as the world cranks back into gear after the holidays, we find ourselves slipping back into old habits and making old excuses. 

Don’t feel too bad. You’re definitely not alone. 

The trouble with most New Year resolutions is that keeping them requires consistent effort over the long term. It can be exhausting just thinking about it.

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