Blog

Last Will and Testament

Posted Jun 11, 2019 by Tracy Pulley

The Last Will and Testament is a key Estate Planning document. A Will allows you to control your property at your death. We often refer to it as the “clean up” document because it tells who you want to receive your assets and how you want them to receive it.

People call our office every week asking for a “simple” Will. That is rarely what they need. A simple Will is something to the effect of “I, John Doe, leave everything to my wife and if she predeceases me, I leave everything to our kids.” How many families does this apply to? There are other factors to consider including second marriages, blended families, age of children, the benefits and consequences of loved ones receiving your assets, and many more! Most people think that all they need is a simple Will but when they learn of other options, they choose the option. A well drafted Will protects your assets and makes sure they are distributed according to your wishes.

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Paying for Higher Education

Posted Jun 6, 2019 by Tracy Pulley

June 6th is Higher Education Day! As a parent and/or grandparent there is great satisfaction in helping your child or grandchild pay for college. How you pay for it is important. What are the options? Let’s review some of them!

529 Plans

A 529 plan is a “qualified tuition plan.” They can be in the name of the student, parent, or grandparent. We have all heard the praises of 529 plans (including that they grow income tax free). But there are things to be aware of regarding 529 plans. If it is in the name of the student or the parent, it will count against the student when they apply for student aid. The investments are limited; each state preselects the investments. Also, if your child/grandchild doesn’t need the money (enters the military, receives a full scholarship, chooses not to go to college, etc.), you will have to pay income taxes on the earnings as well as a penalty for withdrawing the funds.

Roth IRA

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Asset Protection Today Podcast: Why Gifting Incorrectly Can Cost You

Posted Apr 25, 2019 by Bill Alexander

Seniors often wish to make large gifts to loved ones prior to death. Unfortunately, seniors can lose control by gifting property in advance. With good advice, you can ensure that your property is protected for yourself and future generations while preserving full or partial control.

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Asset Protection Today Podcast: How to Choose a Long-Term Care Insurance Policy

Posted Apr 16, 2019 by Bill Alexander

Long-term care insurance is important for anyone who wants to have their needs satisfied at home or worst case in an assisted living facility, as no one dreams of spending their final years in a nursing home facility.

Bill explains what you want to look for in a long-term care insurance policy, and equally important, what to avoid.

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Asset Protection Today Podcast: Key Times for Estate Planning

Posted Apr 11, 2019 by Bill Alexander

The key to any effective asset protection plan is planning. As we progress through various life phases, our asset protection plan needs to evolve as well. In this episode, Bill details the life milestones that require you to review your estate planning.

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Asset Protection Today Podcast: How to Protect Your Rental Property

Posted Apr 2, 2019 by Bill Alexander

Everyone wants a plan that is going to work the way that they want. Unfortunately, there are many ways that a plan can fall apart. How you own and manage your rental property makes a huge difference to whether your overarching estate plan will work.

It’s important to remember that planning involves more than just having the right documents in place. Often, people are not really protected the way that they think they are, as they have not received proper advice about how to get their plan to work for them. Ultimately, your planning should be comprehensive, where everything fits together the way that you want.

In this episode, Bill gives asset protection advice for rental property owners.
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Asset Protection Today Podcast: Preparing for Surprises in Retirement

Posted Mar 28, 2019 by Bill Alexander

Sometimes our clients completely overlook one important financial issue when planning for retirement. Your health risks and the cost of a long-term care crisis, as well as the importance of maintaining financial liquidity are all factors that you must analyze when planning.
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Asset Protection Today Podcast: Preparing For The Death Of A Loved One – Part 2

Posted Feb 19, 2019 by Bill Alexander

In the second and final episode of our two-part series, Bill discusses in what ways he was prepared for his brother’s death and in what ways he wasn’t. Bill offers some critical tips for organizing your important documents.

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Planning for the Unexpected

Posted Feb 15, 2019 by Bill Alexander

Life can be busy, and the pressures thrown at us are overwhelming. The hardest thing to remember to do is to make time for ourselves. Not only do we need respite time, but we also need time to reassess, organize, and plan. Folks tend to do things the way they’ve always been done without considering if it is still the best way. It is the most difficult thing for people to do, and everyone struggles with this issue. Because life throws pressures at us, circumstances can change unexpectedly. It is important to have a current plan in place to deal with these changes.
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Asset Protection Today Podcast: Preparing For The Death Of A Loved One

Posted Feb 12, 2019 by Bill Alexander

In the first episode of a two-part series, Bill discusses what it was like to lose his brother, who dealt with a long life of health struggles. He offers tips to help those who may be going through a similar experience, and provides insight on what to expect during the process of losing a loved one.

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The Foundation of Asset Protection

Posted Feb 6, 2019 by Bill Alexander

The foundation of asset protection is not just to have good legal documents or legal advice, though those things are important. It is to have good liability insurance. Don’t skimp! Most people skimp on insurance because they want to pay a lower monthly rate. However, it is important to have more than just the minimum required amount of liability insurance. This is because it not only covers you when you’re at fault, but also when you’re not at fault and the other driver has no or minimum insurance. Even if you are the safest driver in the world, you’re still at risk of encountering an inattentive or reckless driver, who has no or minimum insurance.
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Planning: Making the Transition Easier for Your Family

Posted Feb 1, 2019 by Bill Alexander

Losing a loved one is never easy. We all experience grief in different ways. Sadness, numbness, and depression are just a few of the emotions we experience. It is important not to make any major decisions too quickly, and to take time to think clearly again. Six months to one year works best for most people.

Leaving your family some direction as to what to do after you pass can make a huge difference. It relieves some of the stress they experience while handling your affairs. The cost of the funeral is crucial. Leaving direction as to your preferences will guide your family during the planning process. Further, providing guidance helps them make prudent decisions instead of emotional ones.
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Asset Protection Today Podcast: What is the PACE Program?

Posted Jan 31, 2019 by Bill Alexander

Bill explains what the Programs of All-Inclusive Care for the Elderly (PACE) program is and how it can benefit seniors who have serious disabling conditions that would normally require nursing care. Who qualifies and what benefits does the program provide? Listen to the episode below for those answers.

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Asset Protection Today Podcast: How to Protect Yourself in a Healthcare Crisis

Posted Jan 22, 2019 by Bill Alexander

Bill has a loved one dealing with a healthcare crisis. In this episode, he explains the steps to take to ensure your assets are protected when in a healthcare crisis.

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Asset Protection Today Podcast: Everything You Need to Know About Power of Attorney

Posted Jan 16, 2019 by Bill Alexander

At W.G. Alexander & Associates, we know that the power of attorney is the most important document that a client can have. In terms of doing estate planning, asset protection planning, and looking into Medicaid and VA benefits (Aid and Attendance) options available to a client, the power of attorney can either help or hinder a family from seeking help for their loved one
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New Year, New Resolutions: For Your Health, Finances, and Planning

Posted Jan 16, 2019 by Bill Alexander

Many of us are still thinking about our New Year’s resolutions, which can be overwhelming. It doesn’t have to be! A good way to narrow down your resolutions is to pick one goal for each important area in your life. For most, this includes our health, finances, and planning for the future.
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Asset Protection Today Podcast: How to Use Life Insurance as a Savings and Asset Protection Tool

Posted Jan 8, 2019 by Bill Alexander

In this episode, Bill explains that life insurance can be both a savings and asset protection tool. He goes over the difference between term life and whole life policies, gives his take on which of the two types of policies he prefers.

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The Sacrifice of Caregiving

Posted Jan 3, 2019 by Bill Alexander

It can be difficult to anticipate the need for long-term care and the financial burden that comes along with it. Unfortunately, many families wait too long to plan for this possibility, and financial assistance can be difficult to obtain without the proper documents. This leaves the caregiver, whether it be a spouse or a child, wondering how they will afford long-term care. When the caregiver is a spouse, they may worry if they are doing enough and whether they will run out of money during their lifetime. These concerns can be overwhelming, and caregivers often fail to take proper care of themselves. This sometimes leaves them exhausted, sick, and unable provide the best care.
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Asset Protection Today Podcast: What You Need to Know About Financial Advisers

Posted Dec 20, 2018 by Bill Alexander

Making investments and understanding risk can be overwhelming. This is why many people choose to rely on a financial adviser to help manage their investments. However, it’s important to know that your financial adviser is only as good as the tools that he or she has at their disposal.

In this episode Bill explains why certain investments are recommended by financial advisers and goes into detail on bonds, exchange traded funds, mutual funds and other investment tools.
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Asset Protection Today Podcast: Dynamics of Having No Family

Posted Dec 11, 2018 by Bill Alexander

In our previous episode, we told you how all families should implement an overarching plan to protect their assets. But what should you do if you have no family?

You will still need the right kind of legal documents and you will need to make some choices when it comes to trusted individuals. For these reasons and many more, you need an experienced planning attorney who will advise you regarding all the various options and strategies for your unique situation.

In this episode, Bill explains how family dynamics change for those who have no living family members.
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