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January 2017 Archives

Protecting your non-citizen spouse from estate taxes

Many Californians are permanent legal residents from countries around the world or are married to someone who is. In the tax world, these people are referred to by the rather un-politically correct term "resident aliens." This is an important term to know when you are developing your estate plan and have a large estate because the taxation rules for non-citizens are different than for citizens.

What changes to estate tax laws will we see under Trump?

Politics impacts virtually every aspect of our lives, whether we realize it or not. That's because our elected leaders make and sign the laws by which we all are required to live. The new Trump administration and the Republican-led Congress have indicated that there are a number of areas in which they plan to exert their authority in the near future.

Clearing the family home from relatives who are squatting

It can be a huge hassle for an estate administrator to force his or her own family members to move out of a deceased parent's or other relative's former home. But this might be necessary to manage the property and get it ready to put on the market. Because of familial ties, these individuals may press all the guilt buttons while continuing to squat on the property.

How to leave assets to your grandchildren

Often, when people do their estate planning, they include their grandchildren only as alternative beneficiaries. That means that they receive an inheritance only if their parent (the grandparent's child) dies before the grandparent. Even if someone dies without a will and has no living children, grandchildren will receive the assets that would have gone to those children.

Assessing cognitive impairment in a parent

A recent blog touched on the topic of getting a parent to accept that he or she can no longer live alone and requires the care assisted living can provide. This entry will delve deeper into the topic while detailing how adult children can get an accurate - yet informal -assessment and evaluation of their parent's cognitive state.

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