Publications for Estate Planning
Estate Planning: What You Need to Know was created as a guide to help you better understand the estate planning process. In this book we will cover commonly asked questions on topics such as: durable power of attorneys; wills; trusts; living wills; insurance; gifting and tax rules; children and marriage; pet trusts; and how to avoid probate.
Governor Rick Snyder signed into law two bills, Public Acts 330 and 331, that modernize Michigan’s trust laws by allowing domestic asset protection trusts (“DAPTs”) for the first time in the state. With its adoption of the Qualified Dispositions in Trusts Act (the “Act”) last month, Michigan joined 16 other states that allow for the creation of DAPTs. The new laws go into effect on March 8, 2017.
The federal estate, gift, and generation-skipping transfer taxes have faced an uncertain future in recent years. As part of the "fiscal cliff," these transfer taxes were scheduled to revert to their 2001 levels, but were avoided following the enactment of the American Taxpayer Relief Act of 2012 on January 2, 2013.
If I disinherit this child, I am afraid that this might impact her relationship with my other children. Is there any way to avoid this? Is there a right way to disinherit a child?
What happens if my uncle dies without having made a will or trust? Also, will I still be able to act on his behalf under his power of attorney after he has passed away?
"General Assignment:" Can I use this document to avoid having to probate his estate?
My husband died recently. Since my daughter lives in a different state, I have decided to move there to be close to her. Prior to my husband's death, we had just recently updated our estate planning documents. Do I need to do this again now that I am moving to another state?
Senior adults facing an incapacity need specialized estate planning. Many senior adults also have concerns about financial security, preserving their independence and dignity, having enough money to pay for good quality care, and taking care of loved ones.
Federal estate tax is imposed on virtually all assets in which a decedent has any interest, including life insurance proceeds, after the assets exceed an exemption amount.
The following is a summary of the types of estate planning documents all individuals should consider implementing regardless of their age, the size of their estate, or whether they are married or single.
I only have one child and she is already listed on all of my bank and investments accounts; why can't I just deed my home over to her now?
Should I name all three children as fiduciaries, and if not, how do I determine who should act in what capacity and ultimately how do I avoid hurt feelings?
How do you avoid having the person you name as your agent ripping you off?
I recently received some troubling news regarding my health, which got me thinking about estate planning and death taxes which are topics I have been avoiding for years now. What types of planning do you think I should engage in?
What was the purpose of setting up our trust five years ago when my husband's estate has to be probated anyway?
From commodity prices to the weather, uncertainty is a fact of life in agriculture. There is one essential factor for long term success, however, that a family farm can control – careful estate and succession planning.
Properly drafted and funded estate tax planning trusts for married persons can double the effective exemption.
On Friday, December 17, 2010, President Obama signed into law the "Tax Relief, Unemployment Insurance Reauthorization, and Job Creation Act of 2010."
In estate planning, clients sometimes overlook the difficulties and conflicts their children may face in dealing with their tangible personal property after their death.
Even the most well-laid plans can go awry. Once your estate plan is in place, avoid these common pitfalls.
There is no federal estate tax for decedents dying in 2010 unless Congress enacts legislation to reinstate the tax.
Parents are becoming increasingly concerned with what will happen to assets they leave to their children through trusts, wills, and beneficiary designations.
The beginning of 2010 marked the first time in 94 years that the United States has been without a federal estate tax.
A recent Michigan Court of Appeals decision further explained the meaning of "transfer of ownership" within the context of a joint tenancy.
Currently, the federal estate tax is set to expire on December 31, 2009 but return in 2011 with a $1 million federal estate tax exclusion.
Governor Jennifer Granholm recently signed into law legislation enacting the Michigan Trust Code effective April 1, 2010.
Multiple marriages have become increasingly common. More than 50% of divorced men and 43% of divorced women are remarried.
Beginning in year 2010, for the first time, an individual with adjusted gross income greater that $100,000 may convert a traditional IRA to a Roth IRA.
Blended families currently outnumber traditional nuclear families. Based on current statistics and trends, the number is growing.
In a recent study of patients with advanced cancer, researchers found that “positive religious coping remained a significant predictor of receiving intensive life-prolonging care near death.”
The number of creditor lawsuits, foreclosures, and bankruptcies are exponentially increasing.
The 2009 year brought increases in both the federal estate tax exclusion amount and the annual gift tax exclusion amount.
The year 2008 was financially turbulent. The major stock market indexes recorded a decline of over 40%.
Under federal tax law each individual can transfer a certain value of property free from federal estate tax at death. This is commonly referred to as the "estate tax exclusion amount."
When a patient dies leaving unpaid medical expenses, a health care provider may discover that the patient owned most or all of his or her assets jointly with another individual.