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Does The Deed to Your Home Agree With The Distributions in Your Will?

Owning a home can be one of your most valuable assets. It is important for homeowners to understand when they buy their house how a Deed impacts the title and ownership and to whom their house passes. Joint Tenants with right of survivorship or Tenants in Common are two common titles that could appear on a Deed, each having its own meaning. Joint Tenancy with right of survivorship states that if you own the house with another person and one of you predeceases the other, the survivor will take full ownership. A Deed titled as Joint Tenancy will take precedence over...

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5 Estate Planning Myths

There are many myths out there about estate planning and this article will address 5 of them. It is important to recognize that falling victim to any of these misconceptions could leave your family in disarray. Planning ahead will save you and your family lots of wasted time, money, and resources. Myth #1 - Having a Will avoids probate. Often clients believe that because they have a Will that their Estate will not have to be probated upon their passing. In actuality, having a Will is a ticket to the probate court. Plain and simple—any time someone has a Will, it...

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Travel plans? Have an Estate Plan in Place Before Leaving Town

girl looking out plane window

With the Summer months upon us and children soon to be out of school, families will be traveling and vacationing more frequently. Vacationing is a time we are meant to enjoy ourselves while leaving the stresses of every-day life behind. With that said, the liberty of traveling puts in mind that we need to be cautious and aware of our surroundings in new and unfamiliar places. Transportation accidents, health risks, unexpected weather, crime, emergencies or terrorism are just some factors to consider. We get reminded we are only human and uncertainty awaits us. As an Attorney practicing in estate planning...

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Living Will vs. DNR

ekg

Often-times, clients get confused and are not aware that a Florida Living Will, commonly called an “Advanced Directive” is not the same document as a “Do Not Resuscitate Order” (DNR). Nor, is a Living Will the same document as a Will. A Florida Living Will is used for health and a Will is used for money. While the Florida Living Will and the DNR are both health related documents, the Florida Living Will and DNR are not necessarily interchangeable. Clients believe if they have one document filled out, they do not need to worry about the other, but it is...

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Estate Planning for Persons with Special Needs

holding hands

Certain situations require specific plans. A great planning tool that can be used for individuals, families and loved ones with a disability is a Special Needs Trust (SNT). Which, according to the Social Security Administration, disability is defined as “the inability to engage in any substantial gainful activity (SGA) by reason of any medically determinable physical or mental impairment(s) which can be expected to result in death or which has lasted or can be expected to last for a continuous period of not less than 12 months.” The Special Needs Trust is arranged so the individual with the disability is...

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Why Young Families Need To Have Estate Planning Documents

Young Families

Young couples have lots of “firsts” to look forward to: moving in together, buying a home, getting married, and having children. With all this excitement it is easy to forget the elephant in the room—having an estate plan in place. Young couples often feel invincible and do not want to have to think about all the “what-ifs” of becoming injured or passing away, leaving their children to grow up without them. But that is what estate planning lawyers are for…to protect you from all the “what-ifs” that life may bring. It is important for young couples to have estate planning documents...

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You Can Trust Your Children, Right?

elderly man and middle-aged man

Most often when parents become elderly, they turn to their adult children to handle their affairs. It is usually the most logical solution - who can you trust more than your own children? Unfortunately, there are certain cases where the logical choice ended up backfiring. Take the case of 87-year-old Ellen and her five children. Her oldest son, Bob, has been given power of attorney by Ellen, which gave him access to all of her accounts. As the saying goes, with great power comes great responsibility and Bob had failed that test when he started stealing most of his mother’s money,...

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What to Consider When Leaving Money to Minors

living trusts

If you are considering setting up a fund for your children - it may seem like a confusing process but you don’t have to do it alone. There are various options when deciding how to leave money to a minor like living trusts. As minors can’t own investments outright, it is important to choose an option that best fits your intentions. At Siegel Law Group, we help you understand your options and choose the best one. Let’s talk about UGMA and UTMA UGMA is a Uniform Gift to Minors while a UTMA is a Uniform Transfers to Minors. The greatest distinction between...

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It’s Time to Prepare Your Estate Plan

estate plan

The nature of a parent is to worry about one’s children. We worry so often over our children’s education, their happiness, their health. The biggest worry? Who will take care of our children if anything should happen to us? Questions like these are why it is imperative to prepare an estate plan that will protect your children before it is too late. Family estate planning can ensure that the estate remains in the family and that your children are protected and well cared. Guardianship Should something happen to you that may hinder your ability to care for your children, a guardian can...

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Why You Need To Protect Your Digital Assets

digital assets

When you consider how to best prepare your estate, what comes to mind? Of course, you want to sort out real estate you own, valuable jewelry and family mementos. You’ll also need to discuss things like vehicles and insurance policies. But what about your digital assets? The average person visits nearly 100 separate websites a month. Some of those may be solely for entertainment purposes, but you have digital assets if you’re active online. Some examples: Social media sites Pictures, videos, and text messages Email accounts Personal websites Bank, credit union and investment accounts Cloud storage sites like iCloud and Google Drive In some cases, these digital assets...

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