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February 2019 Archives

The importance of receipts in estate administration

Serving as the executor of someone's estate is a difficult job. Many people find that they have to take a leave from work in order to handle everything involved. Depending on the size of the estate and the level of preparation undergone by the testator, you could have several weeks or even months of bookkeeping, asset location and distribution ahead of you.

Protecting your estate plan from California disasters

Here in Los Angeles, most of us know somewhere in the back of our minds that our homes could be wiped out in practically the blink of an eye by an earthquake or wildfire. That's happened to many of our friends, family, colleagues and neighbors over the course of the past decades -- most recently in the fires that swept through parts of the state in November. That's why it's essential to store necessary documents -- including our estate plan -- in a safe place so that they'll survive a disaster, even if we don't.

What should you consider when choosing a guardian for your kids?

One of the life events that motivates many people to give some thought to estate planning -- at least one element of it -- is having a child. Many parents want to plan for the worst- case scenario that they both die (perhaps in a car or plane crash) and leave their children orphans.

How to protect your children in a second marriage

Are you headed for a second marriage? Are you already married for a second time? Do you have children from your first marriage? These are all important questions you will need to answer when putting together your estate plan or modifying your current plan. If you answered yes to these questions, there could be some considerations you missed that will help protect your children.

5 things to know if you are an estate executor

It is common for an individual to choose a relative or close and trusted friend to serve as executor of the estate when the time comes. For example, your parents or another loved one may have asked you to be the executor of their estate when they pass. While you probably felt honored at being entrusted with such an important task, it is important to remember that an executor's duties can be extremely complex and time-consuming.

Guardianship versus conservatorship: What's the difference?

One of the key focus areas for estate planning for parents of young children is simply picking who is going to take care of them. It goes far beyond simply passing assets on to the kids, as would be done once they are adults. They need help and guidance moving forward. They need people who can stand in for their parents.

Don't forget your foreign assets in your estate planning

You don't have to be a billionaire to have foreign assets. Many Americans have property, businesses and other investments in foreign countries. Just as you deal with those assets separately when it comes to paying taxes, you also need to give special consideration to them as you do your estate planning.

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