Monday, 25 July 2016 02:02

Divorce and Estate Planning

Divorce and Estate Planning

 

What happens to your Estate Plan if you get a divorce?

 Divorce is a mess.  I know first-hand.  There are several things you should consider after some of the smoke clears.  If you don’t have an estate plan, now would be a great time to get it done.  If you do have an estate plan, you will want to make some changes.

 

California has a law that after divorce, any gifts in your Will to your now ex-spouse are revoked.  Even so, it is best to create an entirely new Will.  One of the reasons is that your Will is used to name a guardian for your children.  If you have children with your ex-spouse, and barring any ruling to the contrary, if one spouse dies, the court will most likely award the surviving spouse custody.  In the event that both parents are unavailable, your designation of a Guardian may control who raises your children depending on the circumstances.  You will also want to change the Executor and Beneficiaries named in your Will.

 

 

Be Active, Be Through

 Some things to consider:

  • First and foremost, talk to an Estate Planning Attorney like myself
  • Re-do your Will
  • Re-do your Revocable Living Trust
  • Change the beneficiary on the various accounts you own where you’ve named your now ex-spouse as the beneficiary such as:

 Life Insurance

Power of Attorney

Health Care Power of Attorney (also called an Advance Healthcare Directive)

Retirement accounts

Bank accounts

  • Check your vehicle titles
  • Check your deeds to any Real Property

 

 

As I said before, divorce is a mess.  I can help you clean-up your estate plan and help you get these things behind you so that you can move forward with your life.

 

Please feel free to give me a call today and we can review your situation and Estate Plan goals.    

 

See lots of estate planning information on my website at: www.myestate-plan.com

 

 

William Daniel Powell (Dan)

619-980-2297

This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

 

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This document is for informational purposes only.  Nothing in this is to be considered legal advice.  Nothing in this shall create an attorney/client relationship, nor shall it create a confidential relationship.  If you need legal advice (in California), feel free to contact me or someone licensed to practice in your jurisdiction.  I assume no liability or responsibility for actions taken, or not taken, as a result of reading this information

Also, please remember that I speak in generalities in my blog and my website. There are so many different factors that can contribute and completely change the outcome that it would be impractical to discuss all of them here.

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Friday, 17 June 2016 02:01

Does my Home go in my Living Trust?

Does my Home go into my Living Trust?

People often ask “what items do I put in my Revocable Living Trust?”  Usually the biggest and most important item is your home.  The process for putting your home into a Revocable Trust is fairly simple.  The attorney will obtain the latest deed to your home if you don’t have one, then he or she will prepare a new deed that transfers the home from you as an individual to you as Trustee of your Revocable Living Trust.  It does not matter if you are still paying a mortgage on your home, it can still be put into the Living Trust.  If you have property outside of California, then an attorney in the other state will need to prepare a deed and have it recorded.  Your estate planning attorney will explain all of the details to you.

 

A “PCOR”, or Preliminary Change of Ownership Report is also filled out and submitted with the deed to the County Recorder’s Office.  This PCOR basically tells the County Recorder that the home is being transferred to a Revocable Trust, and that no reassessment is needed (so property taxes don’t go up!) 

   

It is important to remember that one does not lose control of their property when they create a Revocable Living Trust (sometimes called an Inter Vivos Living Trust, or just Living Trust).  Think of a Living Trust like a bucket that you built.  You decide what to put in your bucket (with advice from an attorney), and what to take out of your bucket should you so choose.  The IRS, as a matter of fact, views this bucket as an extension of you and doesn’t require a separate tax return.  You just do your taxes as normal.  If something happens to you, you can decide who is going to hold your bucket next.  This person is called the Successor Trustee.  Should you kick the bucket, you can decide what happens to what is left inside.  Forgive the attempt at humor.  We can’t take life too seriously! 

 

Please feel free to give me a call today and we can review your situation and other Estate Planning goals.  Everyone’s situation is different, and I can help create solutions. 

 

See lots of estate planning information on my website at: www.myestate-plan.com

 

William Daniel Powell (Dan)

619-980-2297

This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

 

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This document is for informational purposes only.  Nothing in this is to be considered legal advice.  Nothing in this shall create an attorney/client relationship, nor shall it create a confidential relationship.  If you need legal advice (in California), feel free to contact me or someone licensed to practice in your jurisdiction.  I assume no liability or responsibility for actions taken, or not taken, as a result of reading this information

Also, please remember that I speak in generalities in my blog and my website. There are so many different factors that can contribute and completely change the outcome that it would be impractical to discuss all of them here.

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Tuesday, 14 June 2016 23:41

What Does Medicare Cover?

What Does Medicare Cover?

 

What is Medicare?  What does Medicare cover?

I can’t possibly tell you everything you want to know about Medicare, or all of the options.  What I can do is provide a bit of a birds-eye view or summary about some of the pertinent parts of Medicare and how it relates to estate planning and long-term care.

 

The program is available to most people over 65 years old.  Medicare covers medical expenses, hospital care, and post-hospital care.  It also provides some coverage for prescription drugs under “Part D”.

 

Medical expenses:

Medicare covers 80 percent of approved qualified medical expenses and includes things like doctors and surgical services.

 

Hospital Care:

Hospitalization is covered for 90 days per “spell of illness” with a deductible for the first 60 days, and a co-payment of $315 per day for the remaining 30 days.

 

Post-hospital skilled nursing home care:

If the hospital stay is at least 3 days, and only of the post-hospital care needed is “skilled care”, Medicare will cover 100% of the costs for the first 20 days, and a co-pay of $157.50 per day for the next 80 days for a maximum of 100 days of care.  Availability is very limited. 

 

Does Medicare Cover Long-Term Care?

No, Medicare does not cover long-term care.  As described above, Medicare only provides some home care and it must be under very specific situations. 

 

Other Medicare aspects include (but are not limited to):

  • There are “gaps”, and private policies can be purchased to fill these gaps.  These are “Medigap” plans. 
  • Medicare doesn’t cover hospital costs beyond 150 days
  • Medicare doesn’t cover skilled nursing home costs beyond 100 days
  • Medicare doesn’t cover ANY custodial nursing home care or non-skilled home health care

 

Medicare Part D

Medicare Part D is an optional prescription drug coverage.  It is automatic in certain situations for certain people on Medicaid and others.  There are some co-pay rules and many twists and turns that I won’t get into here.   The enrolment period is 3 months prior to, and up to 3 months after your 65th birthday.  A person can only change their plan once a year.  There are also many different plans from which to choose that I won’t get into in this (or likely any) blog.  I simply wanted to provide a general background into Medicare.

 

Please feel free to give me a call today and we can review your situation and other Estate Planning goals.  Everyone’s situation is different, and I can help create solutions. 

 

See lots of estate planning information on my website at: www.myestate-plan.com

 

William Daniel Powell (Dan)

619-980-2297

This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

 

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This document is for informational purposes only.  Nothing in this is to be considered legal advice.  Nothing in this shall create an attorney/client relationship, nor shall it create a confidential relationship.  If you need legal advice (in California), feel free to contact me or someone licensed to practice in your jurisdiction.  I assume no liability or responsibility for actions taken, or not taken, as a result of reading this information

Also, please remember that I speak in generalities in my blog and my website. There are so many different factors that can contribute and completely change the outcome that it would be impractical to discuss all of them here.

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Do I Need a Living Trust? My Granddad’s Story

 

The phone on the kitchen pass-thru rang.  Granddad was in the hospital, had taken a turn, and this was the call we hoped didn’t come in.  It was quickly decided how many cars to drive to the hospital and as it turned out I drove myself there.  Hindsight being what it is, I should have ridden with someone because I may have fractured a speeding law while simultaneously setting a new land speed record in driving my Dodge Charger to the hospital in an emotional and horsepower fueled semi-panic.  Probably not the safest, but I was 18 years old and loved my granddad very much.

 

He never came home from the hospital and mom helped grandma with all that she could.  I remember asking my mom about what was next to come.  I felt bad asking if there was going to be a reading of the Will because I didn’t want to appear like I was interested in material things, but the reality was that I believed that was just how it happened.  I thought it was like how we see it happen on TV.  You know, sitting in a lawyer’s office, with wood paneling on the wall, and all the family sitting in chairs listening.  That’s not how it happens.  The reality was that there was very little estate planning in place, and my mom had to deal with most of the issues and red tape.  After things were cleared up, she told her mom that she really needed to create a Living Trust, and grandma agreed.

 

Have you had someone close to you pass away?  Aside from the emotional pain and distress this caused, if the loved one had no estate planning in place – no Will, no Revocable Living Trust, nothing – and you had to handle the affairs, I sure you realize what a mess this can create.  If you’ve never dealt with this, I’m sure you can learn from others.

 

I’ll give you an explanation of just one of the rewards of creating an estate plan beyond avoiding the mess that not having any estate plan creates, and that is avoiding the costs and time delay of probate.  Let’s say you have an estate worth $650,000.  That is not difficult to do living here in San Diego.  Let us assume that you have a home worth $500,000 and accounts and other property that values at $150,000.  Now with Probate, it doesn’t matter that you owe $10 for your home, or $400,000, the estate is still valued, and costs are still determined at the $650,000 number.  The statutory amount an attorney can charge is $16,000.  The Executor of the estate is also allowed to charge the estate for his or her services up to the statutory amount.  So in this example, another $16,000.  Excluding court costs and other costs, we can see that the cost of Probate for an estate valued at $650,000 is potentially $32,000.  Wow, that’s a lot compared with the few thousand dollars that an inter vivos living trust will cost you.  Plus, Probate usually takes a year or longer.  You can avoid all this loss very easily – create an Estate Plan today.  By the way, a Trust goes by many different names including Living Trust, Revocable Trust, Revocable Living Trust, Inter Vivos Trust, Inter Vivos Living Trust and others.  You can read more about the costs of Probate in my blog.

 

Please feel free to give me a call today and we can review your Estate Planning goals.  Everyone’s situation is different, and I can help create solutions to address your specific goals and your particular situation. 

 

See lots of estate planning information on my website at: www.myestate-plan.com

 

William Daniel Powell (Dan)

619-980-2297

This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

 

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This document is for informational purposes only.  Nothing in this is to be considered legal advice.  Nothing in this shall create an attorney/client relationship, nor shall it create a confidential relationship.  If you need legal advice (in California), feel free to contact me or someone licensed to practice in your jurisdiction.  I assume no liability or responsibility for actions taken, or not taken, as a result of reading this information

Also, please remember that I speak in generalities in my blog and my website. There are so many different factors that can contribute and completely change the outcome that it would be impractical to discuss all of them here.

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What is the difference between Medicare, Medicaid, and Medi-Cal?

In a Nutshell

In a nutshell, Medicare is a federal program that provides basic health insurance and prescription coverage to those 65 years of age and up, or those under 65 years old that are eligible for Social Security Disability benefits.  Medicare does not pay for long-term care.  Some skilled care is provided for a short time and if certain requirements are met, but it is not the norm.

 

Medicaid is a federal and state program that provides health care coverage for persons of all ages if they have a low income and limited resources.  The definition used is that Medicaid is a government insurance program for persons of all ages whose income and resources are insufficient to pay for health care.  Therefore, if you make over a certain amount of money, you won’t qualify for Medicaid.  Medicaid pays medical costs and long-term care costs.  Medicaid also has a right to seek reimbursement from the decedents estate for long-term care, and also for medical care costs.  There are several rules and circumstances involved, and will be discussed in another one of my blogs.

 

 

Medi-Cal is also a program that provides care to persons with low income and limited resources. It is what the federal Medicaid program is called in California, and is therefore essentially the same thing. 

 

 

All of these programs will be discussed in more detail in my blog posts.

 

Please feel free to give me a call today and we can review your situation and other Estate Planning goals.  Everyone’s situation is different, and I can help create solutions. 

 

See lots of estate planning information on my website at: www.myestate-plan.com

 

William Daniel Powell (Dan)

619-980-2297

This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

 

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This document is for informational purposes only.  Nothing in this is to be considered legal advice.  Nothing in this shall create an attorney/client relationship, nor shall it create a confidential relationship.  If you need legal advice (in California), feel free to contact me or someone licensed to practice in your jurisdiction.  I assume no liability or responsibility for actions taken, or not taken, as a result of reading this information

Also, please remember that I speak in generalities in my blog and my website. There are so many different factors that can contribute and completely change the outcome that it would be impractical to discuss all of them here.

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Tuesday, 07 June 2016 00:24

Long Term Care - Part Two

 

Long-Term Care Part 2

 

What Can I Do to Plan for Long-Term Care?

 There are a few options available in planning for long-term care.  Some of these options are:

  1. Private long-term care insurance
  2. “Self-Insurance” or paying out-of-pocket for expenses
  3. Life insurance to replace depleted assets used for funding long-term care
  4. Utilizing a Trust to provide some asset protection
  5. Use up all of your assets and live out your days in a nursing home

  

Some of the options are more desirable than others, and some may be out of reach for some people.

 

1. Private Long-Term Insurance

 Using insurance to pay for long-term care can be a great option if it is available to you.  First of all, you must be “insurable”.  This may vary from company to company.  Next the premiums must also be affordable.  Quotes for premiums are higher for older persons, and go up as you age.  Premiums for women are also usually higher than those for men.  I guess that’s the price of living a longer life!

Some questions and benefits that you should look for in long-term care insurance include (but aren’t limited to):

  • The ability to stop paying premiums while you are receiving benefits
  • Home care as well as nursing home care
  • Sufficient benefit payout to cover costs ($250 per day or more)
  • Duration of benefits (How long will the benefits be paid? 4 years? 5 years?)
  • When do benefits begin after it is established that care is needed
  • Is renewal guaranteed?

  

2. Self-Insurance

 Here, option 2 and 5 are pretty close to the same.  The real difference being how much income do you have and will it continue during your incapacity.  If it won’t continue, do you have sufficient net worth to provide your own long-term care and still provide all that you wish to your spouse, family, and loved ones?  Costs for long-term care obviously varies with the level of care required, and quality of life desired.  Do you want to live in an assisted living facility in La Jolla, your home, El Cajon (not that I have a problem with El Cajon!) or somewhere else?  If you can afford about $100,000 per year for long-term care, this may be a good option for you.  Also, you could use option 3 to replace or supplement consumed resources used for long-term care if you so desire.

  

3. Life Insurance to Replace Depleted Assets Used for Paying for Long-Term Care

 This option may be used in conjunction with any of the other options if you choose.  As long-term care costs arise, and as the bills are being paid, your assets are being depleted.  Life insurance can be employed to replace that value so that your spouse, family, and loved ones are still taken care of.  Should you not need to consume assets for long-term care, the life insurance and the assets will be there for your beneficiaries.

  

4. Utilizing Trusts for Long-Term Care

 The use of a Trust will be discussed in another blog. 

  

5. Use Up All of Your Assets and Live Out Your Days in A Nursing Home

 Again, like option 2, you are basically taking care of long-term care costs on your own.  If you have sufficient assets, then you have lived a blessed life.  If you do not have many assets and do no other planning, this will unfortunately be the default plan.  One hopes to never need long-term care, and I think most of us would prefer another option to this choice.  Choices are great, and we need to use them when we have the opportunity.

 

See lots of estate planning information on my website at: www.myestate-plan.com 

 

Please feel free to give me a call today and we can review your situation and other Estate Planning goals.  Everyone’s situation is different, and I can help create solutions. 

 

William Daniel Powell (Dan)

619-980-2297

This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

 

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This document is for informational purposes only.  Nothing in this is to be considered legal advice.  Nothing in this shall create an attorney/client relationship, nor shall it create a confidential relationship.  If you need legal advice (in California), feel free to contact me or someone licensed to practice in your jurisdiction.  I assume no liability or responsibility for actions taken, or not taken, as a result of reading this information

Also, please remember that I speak in generalities in my blog and my website. There are so many different factors that can contribute and completely change the outcome that it would be impractical to discuss all of them here.

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Tuesday, 31 May 2016 01:58

Dave Ramsey Said I Only Need a Will

Dave Ramsey Said I Only Need a Will

First of all, let me start by saying that I respect Dave Ramsey.  Dave Ramsey, however, is not a lawyer, and he is certainly not a San Diego estate planning attorney.  Why is this relevant?  Well, Dave Ramsey quite often suggests that a Will is something that every person needs.  Moreover, he has said in his book that he thinks Trusts are unnecessary due to their cost of creation.  I agree with Dave Ramsey in that everybody needs some kind of estate plan whether that is a Will based plan, or Trust based plan.  A Will alone (or even in conjunction with the Living Will and Power of Attorney that Dave sells on his website) is not the one-size-fits-all solution that Dave Ramsey seems to suggest.  This is generally so because of the cost of Probate in California, and specifically so because of the cost of homes here in San Diego. 

 

Why can creating a Will cost more than creating a Revocable Living Trust?

Creating a Will based plan can cost almost as much as a Revocable Trust in certain situations, but it is generally a little more affordable.  A proper estate plan contains more than just a Will or just a Trust.  So much of the cost of creating a plan is the same in either option.  Also, if it takes 10 pages to dispose of items to those you choose, it will take 10 pages in a Will and 10 pages in a Trust, so the drafting time is very similar.  The real cost difference is in the cost of Probating a Will.  There is a link to one of my Blog posts above for you that details the cost of Probate in California.  The cost of a home here in California just means that the cost of Probate can go higher. 

 

So is a Will Based Plan Wrong?

No, I wouldn’t go so far as to say a Will based estate plan is always wrong.  For those with few assets, a Will may be preferred because they can take advantage of California’s simplified Probate procedure.  There are certain requirements for taking advantage of California’s Simplified Probate Process that you can read here.  But as I have stated before, a Revocable Trust centered estate plan is usually preferred to a Will because of the powers that a Living Trust provides such as:

  • A Trust is private where a Will is public record
  • A Living Trust helps you if you become incapacitated
  • Wills must be probated and the California Probate process costs time and money
  • Trusts allow for greater control over how and when the beneficiary is to receive property

 

Please feel free to give me a call today and we can review your situation and other Estate Planning goals.  Everyone’s situation is different, and I can help create solutions. 

 

See lots of estate planning information on my website at: www.myestate-plan.com 

 

Thank-you for reading.

 

William Daniel Powell (Dan)

619-980-2297

This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

 

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This document is for informational purposes only.  Nothing in this is to be considered legal advice.  Nothing in this shall create an attorney/client relationship, nor shall it create a confidential relationship.  If you need legal advice (in California), feel free to contact me or someone licensed to practice in your jurisdiction.  I assume no liability or responsibility for actions taken, or not taken, as a result of reading this information

Also, please remember that I speak in generalities in my blog and my website. There are so many different factors that can contribute and completely change the outcome that it would be impractical to discuss all of them here.

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The Longevity Risk – Don’t Outlive Your Money, and Leave Some for the Kids.

What is the Longevity Risk?

God willing you and I will have this “problem” and live to be very old, but without the need for a lot of personal care.  The Longevity Risk is the costs associated with living to be old.  Although old age isn’t as much a prerequisite as is failing health and the need for some – or constant care. 

 

 

Why does the Need for Living Assistance Create a Risk?

Living assistance costs money, plain and simple.  Having a person come into your home and help with some of the tasks depends on the level of care and skill required and a bit on the area you live in.  We here in San Diego know that things tend to be a bit more expensive than other places.  Modestly, however, I think the costs of having someone help with tasks such as bathing, cleaning, dressing, etc. can cost several thousand dollars a month.  That adds up over time.  If you need to go into a full or even a part-time assisted living facility, you can be looking at $5000 to $6000 a month and more if even more care is required.

  

Am I going to be at Risk of Losing all my Kids Inheritance?

Statistics show that the over 65-year-old segment of our population is predicted to grow by about 147% from the year 2000 to 2050, while the rest of the population will only grow by about 49%.  That means the senior-citizen segment of our population is growing, and growing fast.  Moreover, statistically we are all living longer than ever before.  The longer we live, the higher the likelihood that we will need some degree of care in our senior years. 

 

If we end up needing assistance with our day-to-day living, it is quite possible that we will end up using all of our assets, and potentially living our final years in poverty.  Not a very happy ending.  I can help.

  

You Have Choices

There are choices available to most of us.  Call me and let’s discuss options and we will see if we can keep the golden years golden.

 

Please see my Blog for more discussion on the topic of planning for the elderly and asset protection.

 

Please feel free to give me a call and we can establish your Living Revocable Trust, ILIT, or other Estate Planning goals today.  If you have specific estate planning objectives, I can help create solutions to achieve your specific purpose. 

 

See lots of estate planning information on my website at: www.myestate-plan.com 

 

Thanks for reading my blog.

 

William Daniel Powell

619-980-2297

This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

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This document is for informational purposes only.  Nothing in this is to be considered legal advice.  Nothing in this shall create an attorney/client relationship, nor shall it create a confidential relationship.  If you need legal advice (in California), feel free to contact me or someone licensed to practice in your jurisdiction.  I assume no liability or responsibility for actions taken, or not taken, as a result of reading this information

Also, please remember that I speak in generalities in my blog and my website. There are so many different factors that can contribute and completely change the outcome that it would be impractical to discuss all of them here.

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ILIT Trusts – Keeping the Proceeds out of the Insured Estate for Federal Estate Tax Purposes

 

 

Do Life Insurance Proceeds get Included in my Estate for Death Taxes?

 

What are Death Taxes?  For the purpose of federal tax, the is something called federal estate tax exclusion and it is adjusted, or indexed, for inflation.  In 2016 the federal estate tax exclusion is $5.45 million dollars for an individual, and $10.9 million dollars for a couple.  That means that an individual dying in 2016 with an estate valued at less than $5,450,000 dollars will not owe any federal estate tax.

 

So how do we determine what is includable in the decedents estate for federal estate tax?  Let’s leave that for another discussion.  Suffice it to say that generally life insurance IS includible in the insured’s estate for death tax purposes.  Even an Irrevocable Life Insurance Trust (ILIT) may be included in the insured’s estate.  An ILIT is used expressly TO keep the proceeds out of the insured’s estate, so what gives?  Well, if the Irrevocable Trust is poorly drafted or managed, the proceeds may be included.  Also, if the insured gratuitously transfers all the rights in the policy within three years of his or her death, the Internal Revenue Service code section 2035(a) makes the proceeds includible in the decedent’s estate for federal estate tax purposes.   The reason is the way the IRS sees it is that the gift was made “in contemplation of death”, and therefore is disallowed. 

 

 

Does an ILIT’s proceeds get included in my Estate for Death Taxes?

 

The purpose of an Irrevocable Life Insurance Trust is to keep the proceeds out of the insured’s estate for federal estate tax.  This is achievable if the above criterion is met (policy not transferred within three years of the insured death), and certain other criteria is also met.  One of these is that the insured must not require that the beneficiary use the proceeds to pay obligations of the estate such as taxes.  Another is that the insured must not possess “incidents of ownership”.

 

 

What are Incidents of Ownership?

 

Incidents of ownership means the power of the insured or his or her estate to control the proceeds of the policy, the power to change beneficiaries, to assign the policy, to borrow or loan from the policy, and others. 

 

So, as you can see there are many restrictions and requirements in how the Trust is drafted, and how it is maintained in order for this ILIT Irrevocable Trust to function as intended.   Consult an attorney like me for your Estate Planning needs to help insure a proper outcome. 

 

 

Please see my Blog for continued discussion of various aspects of ILIT Trusts.

 

 

Please feel free to give me a call and we can establish your Living Revocable Trust, ILIT, or other Estate Planning goals today.  If you have specific estate planning objectives, I can help create solutions to achieve your specific purpose. 

 

See lots of estate planning information on my website at: www.myestate-plan.com 

 

Thanks for reading my blog.

William Daniel Powell

619-980-2297

This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

****************

This document is for informational purposes only.  Nothing in this is to be considered legal advice.  Nothing in this shall create an attorney/client relationship, nor shall it create a confidential relationship.  If you need legal advice (in California), feel free to contact me or someone licensed to practice in your jurisdiction.  I assume no liability or responsibility for actions taken, or not taken, as a result of reading this information

Also, please remember that I speak in generalities in my blog and my website. There are so many different factors that can contribute and completely change the outcome that it would be impractical to discuss all of them here.

****************

Advanced Estate Planning – An Overview to ILIT Trusts

 

What is a Trust?

As discussed in my other Blog posts, a Trust is a means of passing property to other persons.  A Trust is an advantageous method of passing property for several reasons.  With a Trust, you can help yourself in planning for your potential incapacity.  Also, with a Trust, you can better control how your beneficiaries receive what you leave them and can help protect those you choose as beneficiaries from bad marriages, predators, and the like.  Trusts don’t need to go through Probate and therefore save time and money.  A Trust – be it a Revocable Living Trust, or Irrevocable Trust – is a private document where a Will becomes public record when Probate is opened. 

 

 

What is an ILIT?

 

ILIT stands for Irrevocable Life Insurance Trust.  An Irrevocable Trust is just that – Irrevocable and thus not able to be changed like a Living Revocable Trust can be.  Sounds kind of scary and final doesn’t it?  Well, there are great reasons to use an Irrevocable Trust.  One reason to use an Irrevocable Trust is to create a Special Needs Trust to protect means tested public benefits like Supplemental Security Income (or SSI), or Medicaid and others.  Another great use of an Irrevocable Trust is to create an ILIT or Irrevocable Life Insurance Trust – the subject of this blog. 

 

An ILIT is typically used as an advanced estate planning technique.  When a person wishes to leave money to a person, but is either over the federal estate tax exemption amount (in 2016 it is $5.45 million for an individual, and $10.9 million for a couple), or close to reaching the federal estate tax exemption amount, the use of an ILIT is a great option.  The reason it is a great option is because properly structured, an Irrevocable Life Insurance Trust means that the proceeds of the life insurance are not includable in the insured’s estate for federal estate tax purposes.  Therefore, tax savings are realized.

 

 

How does an ILIT (Irrevocable Life Insurance Trust) work?

 

For the rest of the explanation of ILIT Trusts and how they work, please see Part 2 of this Blog.  Thank you.

 

See lots of estate planning information on my website at: www.myestate-plan.com 

Please feel free to give me a call and we can establish your Living Revocable Trust, ILIT, or other Estate Planning goals today.  If you have specific estate planning objectives, I can help create solutions to achieve your specific purpose. 

 

Thanks for reading my blog.

 

William Daniel Powell

619-980-2297

This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

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This document is for informational purposes only.  Nothing in this is to be considered legal advice.  Nothing in this shall create an attorney/client relationship, nor shall it create a confidential relationship.  If you need legal advice (in California), feel free to contact me or someone licensed to practice in your jurisdiction.  I assume no liability or responsibility for actions taken, or not taken, as a result of reading this information

Also, please remember that I speak in generalities in my blog and my website. There are so many different factors that can contribute and completely change the outcome that it would be impractical to discuss all of them here.

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