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Mar 26, 2018, 9:26 AM
A number of surveys over the last few years report that between 55% and 70% of adults in the United States don’t have an estate plan or have a plan that is outdated. The reasons given for their failure to plan and/or update their estate planning documents are myriad, and include, 1) I don’t have the time, 2) my estate isn’t large enough to worry about, 3) planning is too expensive, 4) I don’t like to think about my death and, my favorite, 5) there’s no estate tax so I don’t need an estate plan. Brilliant.
Mar 19, 2018, 4:08 PM
Upon completing their estate planning, clients often ask how often they will need to update their Wills and other estate planning documents in the future. While there is no set amount of time that applies to every client’s personal situation, a good rule of thumb is to review one’s Will at least every two to three years to ensure the Will still reflects one’s wishes.
Mar 15, 2018, 8:16 PM
In my last blog post, I outlined a brief introduction to the process of seeking a guardian and conservator for an incapacitated adult.
Mar 9, 2018, 4:47 PM
After the death of a spouse, the surviving spouse will inevitably receive bills from hospitals and rehabilitation facilities. Typically, these bills are sent in the name of the deceased spouse. Are you, as the surviving spouse, obligated to pay them?
Mar 6, 2018, 3:48 PM
I was always amazed how my grandfather could build anything. There was no home project that was too big or too complicated for him. Unfortunately, that gene skipped my generation, and when I get involved in do-it-yourself projects around the house, I generally make more work and more expense to fix my work by a professional. In a recent Virginia case, Irving v. Divito, the decedent’s attempts to modify his estate plan had the same result as my attempts to fix plumbing.
Mar 6, 2018, 3:14 PM
It is always important to make sure the beneficiary designation for Life Insurance, Annuities and Retirement Accounts are current, especially after a significant event, such as, disability, divorce or birth. It is even more important to make sure the beneficiary designations are current for Federally sponsored assets, such as Federal Employees Group Life Insurance.
Feb 28, 2018, 5:30 PM
As you might expect, I receive a ton of questions every day about how the new tax law is going to affect individual, business, trust and estate planning. And, as you might expect, my answer is always quite lawyerly - it depends.
Feb 19, 2018, 4:48 PM
Clients who are appointed to handle a loved one’s estate often feel overwhelmed upon the death of their loved one. The probate process can seem complicated and daunting, especially when grieving. The following are some of the most frequently asked questions we receive about probate, and some guidance in response to those questions.
Feb 15, 2018, 6:25 PM
When people hear the word “guardian,” they often think of an adult authorized to make decisions on behalf of a child. It is important to know, however, that guardianships are not limited to children. In fact, Virginia courts appoint guardians and conservators for incapacitated adults in a variety of circumstances. This first in a series of blog posts discussing adult guardianships and conservatorships in Virginia will provide a brief introduction to the process of becoming a guardian or conservator of an incapacitated adult.
Feb 12, 2018, 5:25 PM
A Special Needs Trust (SNT) is a form of discretionary, spendthrift trust designed to preserve government benefits for a disabled or aged beneficiary. Distributions from the trust are intended to supplement public benefits, not supplant them.