Estate planning might not be something you're thinking about at the moment, particularly if you're young. However, it's important to focus on estate planning eventually, because it helps determine what happens to your possessions if you die.
Many people assume that estate planning is unnecessary unless one is wealthy. Consequently, if you are a single parent, you may think that you do not need a will or trust. However, in reality, estate planning accomplishes several goals other than distribution of assets. Because of this, single parents can greatly benefit from it.
Too many people think that estate planning is all about money and assets. Of course these things will be a top priority when it comes to making your will or establishing a trust, but there is another critical aspect of this process: protecting your loved ones.
Music fans across the world were devastated by the recent news that iconic entertainer Prince unexpectedly passed away. Friends, colleagues, musicians, fans and loved ones have shared countless stories about how the superstar touched, improved and/or affected their lives, but now the stories are becoming less about what we knew about Prince and more about what we don't know.
When many people think of estate planning, they assume that it is something only the very old or wealthy do. However, everyone, regardless of their health, age or wealth, can benefit from setting aside the time to draft a comprehensive estate plan.
Thinking about what you want to happen at the end of your life or after you are gone is probably something you would rather avoid. It can make you and your loved ones feel uneasy, and you might just prefer to ignore the whole situation.
Medicaid is the United States' health care safety net. It is an insurance program for low-income and needy people that provides health-related coverage for children, many seniors, and/or people who are disabled. A widespread and dangerous misconception is Medicare will cover long-term costs. In reality, Medicare benefits for long-term care are very limited. Medicare pays only for skilled care that is deemed "medically necessary," and it does not cover personal care required by most seniors with chronic, custodial care needs.
Two recent studies on elder financial abuse were recently published- one suggesting the problem is far bigger than we think and the other suggesting it's much smaller. In addition, there are a few government and private initiatives starting to seriously attack the scourge of financial exploitation of older Americans-considered the most prevalent form of elder abuse.
No matter how old you are, you're still your parents' child. Someday, however, they may need to rely on you for help when it comes to their finances. With an aging population, loved ones must grapple with how to help their elderly parents manage their finances. Regardless of whether you and your parents have always talked freely about money or never discussed the subject, there are several considerations you may want to address with them as they approach their later years.
Gaining control over our finances is usually at or near the top of all New Year's resolutions. What many people don't realize, though, is that good legal planning is an essential component of our financial health. Effective legal documents can protect us from costly divorces, lawsuits and exorbitant transfer taxes. Why then, do half of us not even have a will?