The possibility of being unable to care for one’s own children is difficult to envision, but it should be addressed during the estate planning process. Selecting personal guardians who will assume responsibility for the upbringing of children is a decision that must be carefully considered.
A personal guardian should, of course, be a trusted friend or family member. Often the first people who come to mind are grandparents. While grandparents often step in to care for grandchildren if parents are unable to do so, naming them as guardians may not be advisable….
Over the years, the likelihood of remarriage has risen among older adults. In a recent study of Americans who’ve been previously married, 67 percent of those ages 55 to 64, and 50 percent of those 65 and older had remarried. These unions come with unique estate planning considerations.
Older adults are more likely to have previous estate plans, and these should be reviewed prior to remarriage. The parties often have their own families, complete with adult children and grandchildren, who may have been provided for through a previously executed will or trust….
When parents create trusts, they often consider appointing one or more of their children as trustees. On the surface, it may seem like the best way to protect their legacy is to keep trust management within the family. However, this plan may backfire due to practicality or family dynamics.
Appointing two or more siblings as co-trustees could create logistical problems. Co-trustees may need to co-sign documents, or make other joint actions or decisions, which could be difficult if the siblings reside more than a few hours apart….
Parents and grandparents often transfer IRAs to minor children within their estate plans. A rule called Tax on a Child’s Investment or Other Unearned Income (also known as the “kiddie tax”), was enacted to curtail transfers for the main purpose of avoiding higher taxes that would be paid by adults. The recently enacted Tax Cuts & Jobs Act (TCJA) makes subtle changes to this rule.
An IRA can be a great legacy to leave minor children. The child receives required minimum distributions, but because of her age, most of the money stays in the account and keeps earning….
Cryptocurrencies like Bitcoin, Dash and Ripple are on the rise as investment tools. A cryptocurrency is a form of digital currency that uses encryption for security. The virtual nature of the currency makes person-to-person transfers easier and less expensive because there is no bank involved; the encryption enhances security, protecting against counterfeiting and theft. Cryptocurrencies are usually stored in virtual wallets, such as GreenAddress, in hardware wallets that resemble flash drives, or on exchange sites, like Coinbase, where they are bought and sold….
Partners William (“Bill”) E. Boyes, John Farina and Peter Matwiczyk, along with attorney Duane L. Pinnock, have been named to the 2018 Florida Super Lawyers. The recognition is in the areas of Estate Planning and Probate for Mr. Boyes, and Estate and Trust Litigation for Mr. Farina, Mr. Matwiczyk and Mr. Pinnock. Super Lawyers is a rating service of outstanding lawyers from more than 70 practice areas who have attained a high-degree of peer recognition and professional achievement.
Bill Boyes has been Board Certified by the Florida Bar in Wills, Trusts and Estates for more than 25 years, and has been AV rated by Martindale-Hubbell for over 30 years….
Disabled Persons Receiving Crowdfunding Income Issues
Online crowdfunding sites like GoFundMe, YouCaring and Crowdrise provide easy-to-use platforms for those seeking to ease the financial burdens of friends or family. However, these sites generally do not require a person’s permission when someone begins a campaign for his or her benefit. This can put a disabled person receiving or seeking benefits in a precarious situation. Most means-tested programs impose very modest limits on the income and resources of beneficiaries. However, there are a few ways to help prevent raised funds from affecting benefit eligibility….
Most people are very familiar with individual life insurance policies that will pay a certain amount to beneficiaries upon the death of the policy holder. A survivorship, or second-to-die, life insurance policy insures two individuals, usually spouses, and only pays out when both have passed away.
There are several reasons a family may be interested in a survivorship policy as opposed to, or in addition to, an individual life policy. If a family has a substantial estate that may be subject to an estate tax, the proceeds of this policy may be used to offset some of what may be owed upon the death of the second policy holder….
Many people are familiar with trusts as tools for special needs planning. Not only will a trust ensure that money set aside for a disabled person’s care is used for that purpose, it can also help an individual remain eligible for benefit programs such as Supplemental Security Income (SSI) and Medicaid. Recently, the state of Florida began the ABLE United program which created a new way to save money for the use of a disabled person without adding to his or her assets….
What is a self settled special needs trust? A self-settled special needs trust is funded using the beneficiary’s own assets. For many years, a disabled person could only set up this type of trust if he or she had a living parent or grandparent, or, if not, by going through court proceedings for approval. In December 2016, the Special Needs Trust Fairness Act was signed into law. Now, those with special needs, but who still have capacity to make their own decisions, can independently create and fund their own trusts….