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estate planning Archives

Who should be the beneficiary of your life insurance policy?

Your primary thought when purchasing life insurance in Michigan is probably to provide for your family if you die suddenly. How that policy is set up and who you name as beneficiary could make a big difference in when your children receive the money, and how much, as well.

Do retirement needs impact your estate planning?

Many Americans may find it easer to discuss retirement needs rather than estate planning. The former may include fun goals, like retirement vacations, perhaps a move to a warmer climate, or simply more time to take up a hobby or check items off one’s bucket list. Thinking about one’s passing, in contrast, often feels more like a duty or an obligation owed to one’s surviving family members.

Should a 529 Savings Plan be part of your estate planning?

A common theme in estate planning is providing for the educational costs of beneficiaries. Today’s post takes a look at an increasingly popular option, tax-advantaged 529 savings plans. This type of plan may help cover school expenses when a child reaches college age.

Can you create a trust for your estate plan on my own?

With the wealth of information available on the Internet, individuals may wonder whether they could set up a trust on their own. According to the Michigan State Bar, it is highly risky, although not illegal, for an individual to draft his or her own trust. Let’s take a look why.

When should you discuss your advance health care directive?

A comprehensive estate plan can include an advanced health care directive, also known as a living will. This document describes an individual’s treatment preferences, such as hospice preferences and/or life-sustaining measures in the event of incapacity. A health directive may also designate a healthcare power of attorney, granting an individual with decision-making authority.

How does the Estate Tax Impact a Family-Owned Business?

Many people who have heard about the estate tax, also known as the death tax, are worried about how to protect their assets. As estate taxes could wind up compromising up to 50 percent of the value of people's estates if left unchecked, it is critically important to seek estate planning guidance from an experienced attorney if your estate is significant enough to be affected by this tax after you have passed away.

Using a Safe Deposit Box as Part of an Estate Plan

The safe deposit box is a common place to put expensive items and important documents. These locked boxes are kept in vaults in a bank, which makes them look like very secure locations for things you don't want to lose. However, the way you set up the box and how you include it in your estate plan can make all the difference to your beneficiaries.

Tips regarding the practical aspects of estate planning

You may have gone through the work of creating a revocable trust. However, unless you have retitled assets in the name of that trust, all you have is essentially a piece of paper describing a trust that you intended to create, but failed to set up because it was left unfunded.

An Overview of Types of Trusts

Many people start to think about planning for the future of their estate when they find out about the estate tax. For those that don't know, the estate tax is a tax that kicks in when the owner of the estate passes. This tax can wind up costing people a significant amount of money that otherwise could be passed down to their children or grandchildren.

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