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Estate Planning

Wednesday, October 30, 2019

Ancillary Probate: What is it?

When someone passes away, as a resident of one state owning real property in another, it is necessary to do an ancillary proceeding.  If the decedent died leaving a will, then it is referred to as an ancillary probate, while if there was not will, it is usually referred to an ancillary administration.

Quite simply, the law, applicable to all fifty states, is that when one dies owning real property in a state other than where one resided, you not only need to probate the person's will (or administer his/her estate) in the state of residency, but in other states where the person owned property.  Of course, this can become an expensive and tedious process, especially if the person resided in or w

 


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Monday, September 16, 2019

In Focus: Post-Divorce Estate Planning


A well-conceived estate plan will help you prepare for the expected and the unexpected. A will, for example, declares how your property will be distributed after your inevitable death, while a power of attorney designates a trusted person to manage your personal and business affairs in the event that you become incapacitated without warning. But how does a divorce impact an estate plan? The best way to protect your interests in this situation is to consult an experienced estate planning attorney.
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Sunday, September 8, 2019

Organizing One's Finances and Updating Asset Lists

It is not usually necessary for clients to have their wills and/or trusts updated, if they have been prepared properly in the first place, unless there have been changes in one's family and/or circle of friends.  It is imperative, however, that one update their asset list on a regular basis.  What is meant by this?

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Wednesday, July 17, 2019

Why Should You Have a Power of Attorney?


With a power of attorney, you are essentially empowering another to act on your behalf in a legal capacity. You, the principal or grantor, authorize your attorney to carry out legal and business actions on your behalf. The power of attorney is an important aspect of the estate planning process. It can prove invaluable in a variety of critical circumstances.

Why Should You Have a Power of Attorney?

Establishing a power of attorney allows you to grant legal authority to someone you trust and enable them to act on your behalf in a variety of circumstances.
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Friday, July 5, 2019

Important Changes Affecting Health Care Planning



    For many years, purchasing long-term health care insurance was seen as the perfect way to pay for health care needs in one’s later years.  There were many great policies, which offered home care, nursing home care and care in assisted living facilities.  While many complained that the premiums were high, when weighted against the benefits, it seemed like obtaining the insurance made incredibly good sense.  

     Unfortunately, over the last few years, many companies are no longer offering long-term care insurance, and the premiums on the ones which are being sold are exhorbitant.  One option which is now being touted as an alternative is the purchase of a type of life insurance policy which has a long-term care rider.
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Monday, June 24, 2019

Medicaid Trusts


Medicaid is a need based government assistance program. To qualify for Medicaid, your income and other financial resources must fall below a certain threshold. Unfortunately, if you do not qualify for Medicaid, you can quickly see your assets dwindle as the cost of long term medical care is very expensive. The costs will eat up your financial resources and assets you wished to leave to your family and loved ones. Additionally, Medicaid only provides for certain basic care needs.
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Monday, May 20, 2019

Protecting Your Digital Assets


Protecting Your Digital Assets After Your Death

Although people started creating wills and thinking about post mortem asset distribution thousands of years ago, some aspects of estate planning are a great deal more current. While people have always been able to imagine and prepare for babies not yet conceived, anticipated marriages or unexpected deaths, it has not been possible to predict to plan for laws that change drastically and social norms that take a sharp turn in the future. Less than two centuries ago, for example, same-sex marriage was as unthinkable, as unthinkable as the undeniable fact that it was once legal to “own” people in this country.

Fifty years ago computers were not on the majority of desks or laps in this country and no one was yet storing important confidential financial and personal information in cyberspace. 
For this reason, it is only very recently that estate planning has come to include making arrangements for protecting digital assets as well as other property.


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Friday, May 3, 2019

Death of a Family Member: What to Do



Knowing what to do when a loved one dies can alleviate some of the uncertainty and anxiety that normally follows. Of course, funeral arrangements must be made quickly and family members must be notified.  One should order sufficient copies of the death certificate, as there may be a delay in obtaining additional copies later on.  Death certificates will be needed for each asset owned.  The funeral home usually notifies social security of the death of someone collecting benefits, so the family need only notify the provider(s) of any retirement pension which was being collected, as well as the health insurance carrier.


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Monday, April 15, 2019

Should I sign a prenup?


Although prenups used to be caricatured as documents only used by extremely wealthy men or women who in their later years married much younger spouses presumed to be “gold diggers.” There was humor associated with the prospect of signing away future wealth when that wealth seemed to be the motivating factor behind the marriage. 

These days, however, when divorce is nearly as common as marriage, and almost 80 percent of divorceé(e)s remarry, prenups are taken far more seriously. Often, both would-be spouses have accumulated wealth that they want to preserve for the children of their first marriages. Also, viewing the statistics, it’s difficult for anyone to deny that any marriage may not last “until death do us part.
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Sunday, April 7, 2019

The Inheritance Rights of A Spouse--Important Facts


 

New York, like all states, provides legal protection for spouses, in terms of inheritance rights.  The provisions largely originated from the problems which occurred when a husband would die, providing the bulk or all of his assets to a female companion, thus leaving his wife and children without support.  Of course, things have changed, and the laws now apply to men and women.  Of course, the purpose of the laws is to make sure that the spouse is provided for financially.

In summary, the law provides that if one dies without a will and leaves a spouse and children, the spouse is entitled to one-half (1/2) of the deceased spouse's assets, while the children are entitled to the remainder.
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Monday, February 25, 2019

Do Snowbirds Pay Taxes Here or There?


For many people it seems that snowbirds lead a charmed life, migrating south to avoid cold New York winters and returning to escape uncomfortable Florida summers so they are always living in a pleasant climate. Even better, by having nests in both states, they always inhabit a cozy home. There are, however, a few possible snags. A major one may be failing to handle taxes properly. If you don’t work with an
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At the Law Office of Angela Siegel, we are pleased to offer legal assistance to clients located in Nassau, Suffolk, Queens, Kings and New York Counties specifically but not limited to Garden City, Jericho, East Meadow, Mineola, Syosset, Roslyn, Cedarhurst, Woodmere, Hicksville, Plainview, Merrick, Wantagh, Bellmore, Rockville Center, West Hempstead, Little Neck, Douglaston, Bayside, Flushing, Forest Hills, Astoria, etc., as well as clients located within the state of Florida.



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