Monthly Archives: September 2018

Important Things to Know Before Filing for Bankruptcy

Statistics reveal that last year there were 790,830 bankruptcy filings, which marked the smallest number of bankruptcies that have been filed in years. Even though this number has decreased, the bankruptcy rate in our country is still high. This article will review some important things to consider before filing for bankruptcy. All of Your Debts Must be Declared During Bankruptcy Bankruptcy is a challenging process, but some people do not reap the true benefits of the process because they are not entirely honest. Unfortunately, many people make the mistake of not declaring all of their debts when filing for bankruptcy. To eliminate debt, it is critical for a person to inform bankruptcy court as well as the involved legal counsel the exact type and amount of debts that are involved. Bankruptcy is Complicated Bankruptcy has numerous benefits, but it is a particularly complicated process. Unfortunately, the various nuances involved with the bankruptcy process cause many people to make errors when filing for bankruptcy. One of the most common of these errors is failure to file important documents that are necessary to successfully navigate the bankruptcy process. Another failure is to meet the strict requirements of bankruptcy criteria. In some cases,     Read More

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Estate Planning for Surviving Spouses

When spouses die, no matter if it is suddenly or anticipated, a great deal of the subsequent estate planning is spent on administering the deceased person’s estate rather than focusing on the needs of the surviving spouse. It is critical for surviving spouses to understand what steps should be taken to make sure that their interests are protected after the death of a loved one. This article reviews some of the important estate planning steps that surviving spouses should remember to follow. Durable Power of Attorney A durable power of attorney designates one person to act on your behalf for financial matters during the course of your lifetime. In many cases, spouses will name one another as the appointed agent so that one spouse can make decisions on behalf of the other in case of emergencies. These documents are particularly important because events that result in disability and incapacity are frequently unexpected. In the case of a surviving spouse, it is often important to take steps to make sure that someone other than the deceased spouse is designated as the appointed agent. Health Care Proxies Health care proxies (which are sometimes called medical powers of attorney) are used whenever a     Read More

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The Truth Behind Legacy Plans

If you have created a Last Will and Testament, Revocable “Living” Trust, Health Care Proxy, and Living Will, you might the mistake of thinking that you have created all of the estate planning documents necessary. The truth is, however, that there are still some potential complications that can occur involving the distribution of your estate following death. This is where legacy planning comes in. Legacy planning refers to a financial strategy that lets a person pass assets to a loved one or family member after death. Because legacy plans are frequently complicated in nature, they often require the assistance of an experienced estate planning attorney. There are also many myths circulating about how legacy plans operate, which this article will seek to explain. What is Legacy Planning? Most estate plans focus solely on what assets a person will leave behind after death. Legacy planning, however, involves a more comprehensive approach and focuses on the creation of a plan for managing a person’s total wealth while alive, distributing an estate after death, and passing on a person’s legacy. These plans often include non-financial assets as well as financial assets. Through legacy plans, you can not only pass assets to loved ones     Read More

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Learning from the Estate Planning Mistakes of Aretha Franklin

While Aretha Franklin is remembered as an extraordinarily talented musician, she made some significant estate planning mistakes from which we can all learn. When Franklin died in August of 2018, she did not leave a will or any type of estate plan despite having four children, including one with special needs. If you fail to leave an estate plan, it means that your inheritance will not be distributed in the way that you intended. If you need any type of estate planning assistance, you should not hesitate to speak with an experienced estate planning attorney. A Large Number of Americans Die Without Estate Plans Caring.com released a study in 2017 that found a large number of Americans die without a living trust or will. The most common reason why individuals claim they do not create these estate planning documents is that they simply have not gotten around to it yet. There are many reasons why people delay creating estate plans including the emotional unpleasantness of having to make end-of-life decisions. Other individuals think that because they do not have a large inheritance, creating an estate plan is not important. In reality, everyone should be concerned about proper estate planning because     Read More

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