As you no doubt already know, on January 26, 2020, basketball legend Kobe Bryant was killed in a helicopter crash on a wooded hillside 30 miles north of Los Angeles. Also killed in the tragic accident was his 13-year-old daughter Gianna, and seven other passengers, who were friends and colleagues of Kobe and his family….

The Tax Cuts & Jobs Act (TCJA) made sweeping changes to exemptions, deductions, and credits for your family’s federal income taxes. But one major change that you might not have noticed is the way the law altered the potential tax consequences of divorce. Unlike child support, alimony payments have long been tax-deductible for the ex-spouse…

In the first part of this series, we discussed the potential ramifications the SECURE ACT has for your estate and retirement planning. Here, we’ll look more deeply into additional strategies you may want to consider in light of the new legislation. On January 1, 2020, the Setting Every Community Up for Retirement Enhancement Act (SECURE…

On January 1, 2020, the Setting Every Community Up for Retirement Enhancement Act (SECURE Act) went into effect, and it represents the most significant retirement-planning legislation in decades. Under previous law, those who continued working could not contribute to a traditional IRA once they reached 70 ½. Starting in 2020, the SECURE Act removed that…

These days, lots of people consider their pets to be members of their family. Indeed, pets can become our closest companions. As such, it’s only natural you’d want to make sure your furry friend is provided for in your estate plan, so when you die or if you become incapacitated, your beloved companion won’t end…

One of the hardest things to do as a human being is to acknowledge our mortality. Some people even seem to think that if they ignore their eventual death, it will not happen. This is risky behavior for anyone, but particularly for those who are parents of young children. If parents are the victim of…

In the first part of this series we shared the dangers of do-it-yourself estate planning. Here, we’ll look at how online legal documents can even put your minor children at risk. Given how far web-based technology has evolved, you might think online legal document services like LegalZoom® and WillsandTrusts.com have advanced to the point where…

The “Understanding Your Power of Attorney” video answers fundamental questions in estate planning. ACTEC Fellow Bernie Krooks explains why a Power of Attorney (POA) is the most important estate document you can sign in this video presentation. Krooks is a nationally-recognized expert in all aspects of elder law and special needs planning. Krooks answers critical…

Among the chief advantages of trusts, they let you: Put conditions on how and when your assets are distributed after you die; Reduce estate and gift taxes; Distribute assets to heirs efficiently without the cost, delay and publicity of probate court. Probate can cost between 5% to 7% of your estate; Better protect your assets…

As we head into the peak of the holiday season, you’re likely spending more time than usual surrounded by your family and friends. It’s one of the rare times of the year when loved ones from across the country gather together to enjoy each other’s company and celebrate the passing of another year. The holidays…