Sunday, November 29, 2015

Estate Planning Tips for People Going Through Divorce

Divorce is stressful period of transition and change for most people. While there many things on which you will need expend your attention during this challenging time, you should not forget that your estate plan also requires addressing now that you've experienced this life change.

One of the first things you will want to do is update your will. Generally, your will names your spouse by name, so if you die and your will leaves a sizable inheritance to "John Doe" or "Jane Doe," then your executor (or the trustee of your trust) and the courts will be obliged to follow this instruction, even if this person is your ex-spouse. For many people, such an outcome might be especially frustrating and painful, so you should deal with updating your will promptly.

You will also need to go through any asset or account that has a death beneficiary destination on it to remove your ex. Recent court cases have ruled that, even if you divorce your ex and update your will, your ex will still receive the money from your life insurance or retirement account if you do not update the paperwork on those accounts. The single determining factor regarding who gets your transfer-on-death or pay-on-death accounts is the name on that account's death beneficiary designation form, so it is vital that you make sure you update each of these accounts.

Additionally, you'll want to tend to your powers of attorney and living will. Chances are, you do not want your ex managing your financial affairs or making healthcare decisions (including end-of-life decisions) for you after you're divorced. Executing new powers of attorney and a new living will is often a relative quick and straightforward process.

If you have a living trust, you should investigate updating this part of your estate plan, as well. For many people, their spouses may not only be beneficiaries of their trusts, but trustees, as well. A capable estate planning attorney can assist you with making the changes your trust needs to address your divorce.

Finally, you do not have to wait until your divorce is finalized in order to begin updating your estate plan. Even if you anticipate that your divorce may take several months or years to complete, you can (and should) start working on updating your estate plan right away. Keep in mind, though, that the law in every state says that you cannot disinherit your spouse so, even if your preference is to leave your ex nothing, you will not be able to make that happen until the divorce is final.

This article was written by Rich Lynn, Author for UPG America and is intended for general information purposes only. Some information may not apply to your situation. It does not, nor is it intended, to constitute legal advice. For more information about this and other estate planning matters, including additional estate planning related articles, visit our website at You may also find out more about the Legacy Assurance Plan, an estate planning assistance service offered by UPG America, at
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Saturday, November 28, 2015

Ever Considered an LLC?

There are no hard and fast rules as to what is the best way to structure a business, and naturally, the decision will be based on your own individual circumstances. But there are certain pros and cons to each business structure that you should be aware of, as there are certain rules that regulate the way business may be conducted in the U. S.

Strategy - Consider converting your business to a Limited Liability Company to avoid personal exposure to business liability.

Sole Proprietorship and Partnerships do not offer owner(s) protection from business debts, whereas Corporations do.

For this reason alone, you should consider forming your business entity as a Corporation - to provide the owner(s) "1st Level" protection from business creditors. Of course, this only applies to debt that has not been "personally guaranteed" by any business owners.

This same level of protection can also be accomplished, without incorporation, using a "Limited Liability Company" (LLC). A "Limited Liability Company" is taxed as a partnership form of organization-using a Form 1065, (or as a corporation, using a Corporate Tax form) and issuing K-l (Form 1065) Schedules to each owner.

This is the newest method of structuring a business and is a fairly recent innovation. An LLC is like a Sole Proprietorship; however it provides the same protection from liabilities as that of a "C" or "S" corporation. In fact, this structure allows you to elect to be treated as a corporation without having to deal with the formalities of a corporation.

If there is only one owner, you can file and be taxed as a Sole Proprietorship. If there are two or more owners, you will be taxed as a partnership.

Here's why you may want to consider using the LLC form of business organization.


· Limits liability just like a regular corporation.

· One person can own the LLC, which eliminates the need to file a separate tax return.

· Other entities such as a C Corp, trust, or partnership can own an LLC.

· Does not require the formal meetings and documentation of a "C" or "S" corporation.

· Tax filing and other paper work is simple and inexpensive.

· You can claim all the same tax advantages of Sole Proprietorship and partnerships.You don't have to hold shareholder meetings or keep meeting notes.

· Management control need not be proportional to ownership.

The advantages of a "Limited Liability Company" over an "S" Corporation form of business organization are as follows:

· An "LLC" is not limited to 100 owners;

· An "LLC" allows foreign individuals to be owners, and

· An "LLC" cannot have its status revoked if it engages in real estate activities.


· The major disadvantage of an LLC is that it does not provide a FICA tax break like an "S Corporation" does (except in the case of hiring a spouse or children... their salary is not subject to FICA taxes if they are under the age 18).

· The laws which govern an LLC are not uniformly written among the states. Because there is no uniformity between states with regard to the tax treatment of an "LLC", there may exist some potential for exposure to additional liability at your local and/or state level.

Under a "Limited Liability Company" its owners are not called owners or partners, but rather are referred to as "members." Each member enjoys an upper limit on their own personal liability potential in an amount equal to the dollars they personally invested in the "LLC"-just like the liability protection afforded "S" Corporation shareholders.

One final thought on multiple ownerships within partnerships, LLC's or corporations. What happens if you and one other owner in your business do not get along? Bad relationships have resulted in some of the most expensive and protracted legal battles around. This kind of business contention is as bad as a divorce.

Thus, take the following advice:

If you incorporate or structure your business as an LLC and have multiple owners, always set up a "buy-sell" agreement at the launch of your business. This will eliminate a lot of problems you could encounter later. Think of "buy-sell" arrangements as some sort of business prenuptial agreement.

As I have already noted, the way you formally structure your business can protect you from liabilities and save you thousands of tax dollars depending on your personal circumstances. I strongly recommend that you seek out the professional help of your accountant or attorney in order to sort out the issues with each of these entities.
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Friday, November 27, 2015

How to Choose the Right Business Structure

By reviewing the pros and cons of these four common business structures, you can determine which one will benefit you most.

Thursday, November 26, 2015

Happy Thanksgiving!

"Feeling gratitude and not expressing it is like wrapping a present and not giving it." - William Arthur Ward 

Have a Safe and Happy Thanksgiving!

Wednesday, November 25, 2015

Tuesday, November 24, 2015

Should You Include Your Spouse When Forming a Small Business LLC?

In this video it talks about a couple of reasons why you may not want to have your spouse included in your LLC. But every situation is different.

Monday, November 23, 2015

Can You Afford Effective Estate Planning?

"Can I Afford Effective Estate Planning?"

That's Really Not the Right Question.

What you should be asking yourself is: "Can I Afford Not to Do It?"

You may be asking yourself whether you can really afford to do the effective estate planning that you know needs to be done. That's not the question to ask. The real question is whether you and your family can afford to be without the protection and security that the right planning provides.

Would you drive without car insurance? How would you feel without the protection that liability and property coverage offers??

Would you leave your home uninsured?

Would you go without health insurance, knowing that any major medical bills could wipe you out?
In the case of the car, home, and health insurance, you're protecting against the possibility of something happening. If an insured event occurs, then your insurance will cover you, and the premiums you paid for the insurance will be more than worth it.

Estate planning is protecting against the possibility that you might become incapacitated during your lifetime, and the certainty that you will pass away one day.

So what protection and security does the right kind of planning provide?

Protecting You if You Become Incapacitated. If you become incapacitated and need help managing your financial affairs and your medical care, the people you want helping you will need the proper legal documents in order to have the authority to act for you.

Protecting Your Loved Ones. The right kind of estate planning will protect your loved ones from any of the following:

  • Creditors - whether they have creditor problems now, or some that arise in the future.
  • Predators - people who would take advantage of them after they receive an inheritance from you.
  • Poor Financial Judgment - sometimes our loved ones just aren't good at handling money.
  • Loss of Benefits - if you have a loved one with Special Needs, then having the right plan will protect their continuing benefits.
  • Family Feuds - Unfortunately, when your planning is not done correctly, horrible feuds can arise between family members, even among siblings who previously got along.
  • Divorce Loss - if one of your loved ones got divorced, would you want their ex-spouse to receive half of their inheritance? Without proper planning, that can happen.
  • Blended Families - in families where there are children from other marriages, then the right estate planning will protect against one side of the family being inadvertently disinherited.
Protecting Your Assets. The right planning will protect your assets from unnecessary expenses, and the potential for loss from creditors or a nursing home spend-down.

  • Probate Expense - If your estate goes through Probate, then your family will pay a much higher cost to administer your estate. The attorney fee to pay in Probate is calculated as a percentage of your assets, starting as high as 4.5%. For example, in Lucas County, the attorney fee for probating a $400,000 estate (gross value) would be $15,000. With the right planning, that cost could be significantly reduced, resulting in savings of up to $11,000!
  • Creditors or Long Term Care Spend Down. If you're concerned about the potential for losing your savings to a nursing home, and if long term care insurance is not an option for you, then the right kind of estate planning can help protect a large portion of your assets and preserve them for your loved ones.
Whether or not your current estate planning is appropriate for your current needs and goals is something you need to be concerned about. In our office, we offer a no-cost and no-obligation initial consultation. We meet with you to determine whether your current planning is appropriate for your needs and goals, and make recommendations for any changes that may be required. Call our office to schedule an appointment with one of our estate planning attorneys, or visit our website ( to learn more about our services and how effective estate planning can benefit you and your loved ones.
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Sunday, November 22, 2015

Grounds For Divorce

We've all heard about "fault" and "no-fault" divorce. While its true that many state laws provide for a variety of fault-based grounds for divorce, such as adultery, cruelty, or abandonment, almost all states also offer some sort of no-fault divorce.

Saturday, November 21, 2015

What Is Health Care Power of Attorney?

A health care power of attorney or a health care proxy is a document that designates a person or persons you name and authorizes that person to make health care decisions for you -- but only in circumstances when you can't make the decisions for yourself.

Thursday, November 19, 2015

Power of Attorney - 6 Factors You Should Consider When Nominating the Best Agent

Ever wondered how your modest finances or properties are handled, in case something occurs to you or you will have to go away somewhere? In that case consider the power of attorney. What is power of attorney? This is a legal document that would facilitate you to allow an organization or a person manages your business matters and your finances.

The principal is person who is creating or signing the power of attorney, while the agent or the attorney-in-fact is the person who would be granted with authority. Because the power of attorney will give the agent the control over banking, credit and other financial concerns, it is important to be made with care that's why legal assistance is important.

Power of attorney can be divided into 2 types, the general and the specific. The general power of attorney can handle different personal and business transactions while the specific power of attorney identifies specific transaction when the document would take effect.

Here are some factors you should consider when choosing the best agent for your power of attorney:

• Capability. It is much recommended to think about the capability of agent in managing legal matters and principal's property. You should not entrust your own finances to the agent who has problems in controlling over their own finances.

• Age. In case you are thinking about your child as the attorney-in-fact, you should consider the age. There are differences on every state of laws on creating the power of attorney. However approximately all of the laws accept that no agent must be under 18 or 21 years old.

• Work experience. It's good idea to award authority to agent who is competent and expertise in legal matters or in finances.

• Time. While deciding on the perfect agent to stand for you, at that time it is very vital to think about how much time they can provide in handling legal matters and financial.

• Location. It's advisable to consider agent who is not far from the property and the principal.

• Organization and documentation skills. The principal may perhaps require the attorney-in-fact to trace and correctly document the several transactions made whether it will be for personal, business or government purposes.

Other factor you should pay attention is how to decide the spouse as the attorney-in-fact. Nearly all military personnel will give the power of attorney to their spouses in case they are in battle. Other option is a close relative.

You do not always have to opt for a family member, you can decide on a non-relative attorney-in-fact. If the principal is slightly worried on giving many duties on one agent, then he or she may well find other co-agents. However you could do that only if the power attorney specifies the information or the limitation of the capabilities. Previous to making decision on agent in the power of attorney, the principal ought to talk to the agents first and ask them if they are keen to be agents.

When carrying out the task, no organizations will control the agent. It will just depend on the principal as well as principal's relatives to supervise if the agent is carrying out what is predetermined in the power of attorney.

Learn more guide to understanding the power of attorney []. Get free tips and advices, please visit: []
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Wednesday, November 18, 2015

What Are the Tax Benefits for LLCs?

If you form a limited liability company (LLC) from your business, this is an excellent way to protect your personal assets from the liabilities of your company. Incorporation protects your own property, if a judgment is rendered against your business. In addition, forming an LLC gives you an advantage, since your business isn't responsible for the taxation of its profits.

The owner of an LLC reports the profits and losses of the business on his personal tax return. This operates in a way that is similar to general partnerships or sole proprietorships. These are called "pass-through" taxes, and you will not have to file a corporate return if you own an LLC. Your share of the profits or losses is reported on your individual tax return.

No Residency Requirements

When you form an LLC, you do not have to live in the state in which it is formed. You don't even need to be a permanent US resident or a US citizen. For this reason and others, businesses owned by immigrants are usually formed as LLCs.

LLCs give your company more credibility with prospective customers, suppliers, partners and lenders. The LLC is often favorably looked upon by other businesses.

LLCs have flexible management structure. Your LLC can establish any type of organizational structure upon which the owners agree. It can be managed by the owners, known as members, or by managers. This differs from corporations, which must have a set board of directors who will oversee all major business decisions for the company. They will also manage all the affairs on a day-to-day basis.

LLCs encounter fewer ongoing formalities and annual requirements imposed by states than corporations do. In addition, there are fewer restrictions on who can own an LLC, unlike the rules found with S Corporations.

You may also be considering how to incorporate a business as an S-Corp or C-Corp, if you plan to incorporate rather than pursue registration as an LLC.

What is an S-Corporation?

An S Corp has similarities to LLCs, because its federal tax status also allows pass-through of taxable income or losses to the investors or owners. Your company will not be double-taxed as it is with a C corporation. S Corp status offers you pass through taxation, limited liability protection, investment opportunities and the elimination of double taxation on business income. An S Corp can also continue to function even if the original owner dies.

What about a C-Corporation?

If you prefer to incorporate, as opposed to becoming a Delaware LLC or an LLC in your home state, the C-Corp is the most common type found in the US. When you form a C-Corp, you will create a separate structure that shields personal assets from any judgments against your company. C-Corp structure includes officers, shareholders and directors.

Christine writes for USA Corporate Services, a company that helps entrepreneurs incorporate a business or form a limited liability company.
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Tuesday, November 17, 2015

Advance Healthcare Directives - Be Sure to Write Your Living Will

With modern medical technology advancements, it is becoming more and more important to consider writing an advanced healthcare directive. There are several kinds of advanced healthcare directives. A living will is one form of an advanced healthcare directive. It is a document that specifies what you want done medically if you are no longer capable of making decisions for yourself. A medical power of attorney or healthcare proxy is another form that appoints a specific person to make decisions for you if you are incapacitated. It is advised that a person have both documents prepared and in place long before they will ever be needed.

With today's advancement in medical care many people are left confined to nursing homes. Many elderly are in a vegetative state, fed through feeding tubes while their bodies slowly die. The emotional and financial burden the families of these patients experience is overwhelming. Lives are prolonged but there is no real quality of life. An advanced directive can prevent this from happening to those you love.

The living will was first proposed by Luis Kutner in 1969. His purpose was to make sure the living were able to make their wishes known when they were no longer able to speak for themselves. The living will gives direction to medical professionals about what procedures a person wants and doesn't want. It can forbid the use of medical equipment used to sustain life or direct it be discontinued when it only prolongs death. It can be general or specific depending on the wishes of the person writing it.

Advanced directives should be regularly updated to make sure they cover current medical technology. As advancements are made, changes need to be made to reflect that advancement. A living will that is current is more likely to be acknowledged and followed.

It is advised that a living will be combined with a healthcare proxy to assure your wishes are followed. No document can fully cover all the circumstances that might occur. Having a person on the scene making immediate decisions is important. By designating a person in advance to make decisions, you can be reassured that no decisions are made that might conflict with your desires.

The comfort and peace of mind an advanced healthcare directive gives is invaluable. Knowing you will not be a burden to your family allows you to calmly live knowing any necessary medical decisions will be made by someone you trust.

Bryan Sims writes about various topics including health issues and product information for the online audience. Find information about the newest website at which helps people find super saver deals on Peerless TV mounts and more information about various types of wall mounts for televisions.
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Monday, November 16, 2015

Understanding of Probate - The Process of Assets Transfer After a Person's Death

When someone dies, his or her assets should go through probate. The probate process includes collecting the deceased's assets, paying off liabilities and necessary taxes, and administering property to heirs as per the will.

Probate of decedent's Will

During this process, authenticity of the deceased's will is to be proved in the court of law. Will of a deceased must be probated soon after his or her death. Nobody has a right to hold it back at any cost.
The decedent's attorney or the person possessing the will of decreased, will need to produce it immediately, or within the specified time. There are penalties for destroying or concealing the will.

Probate Proceedings

The procedure starts only when there is the involvement of an official executor. If you are well versed with the different kinds of laws that are involved, then you can submit your application to be the executor on behalf of the friends or relatives.
  • The first thing to do here is to file a formal request. The applications should be submitted in the local court of the same country, where the deceased lived the last days of his or her life. Along with filing the probation documents, you should also produce the original death certificate of the deceased.
  • After filing the documents in the court, it the next step is to inform the creditors of the deceased. You can advertise about the probate in the newspapers, or on any other such local media.
  • You can let the heirs and beneficiaries of the departed know about the probate process, by mailing the court notice to their respective mailing address or by emailing it to them. You will need to document every notification sent to the successors who are in the line, and submit them to the court before the probate process commences.
You can complete all the procedures within the nine months duration, which is after the date of death of your client. There are many benefits from letting your client know beforehand about what will happen with his or her possessions after death.
  • The distribution of property among the beneficiaries will take place only after clearing off the debts taken by the diseased from different sources.
  • The entire process will be completed with transferring of the deceased's possessions to the rightful beneficiaries.
The inheritance money will be handed over to the next successor in line in many ways such as, funeral expenses, debt and taxes, family allowances, costs of estate administration, etc.

Advance Inheritance LLC is one of the best financing companies in Los Angeles, CA. If you are looking for fast funding again the inheritance money that is due to you, Please visit The entire process can be completed in 3-5 working days.
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Sunday, November 15, 2015

Living Wills and Healthcare Power of Attorneys Help to Make Sure Your Wishes are Met

No one can foresee problems that may arise should he become incapacitated. Yet, you can avoid negative consequences of unforeseen problems by creating Living Wills and Healthcare Power of Attorneys (HCPOA).

Setting up a Living Will or HCPOA is a relatively simple task. The first step it to consult with an attorney that specializes in estate planning to ensure that your documents are clear. Here's an overview of what you can expect from your Living Will and HCPOA.

Healthcare Power of Attorney

The HCPOA, otherwise known as a "healthcare proxy" is a legal document that enables an individual that you appoint (your "agent") to act as your healthcare representative if you become incapacitated. The agent becomes your acting representative at the moment you become incapacitated, thus eliminating the need for your loved ones to argue over your rights and wishes in court.

Your agent has the authority to request or deny any medical treatment that he determines to be appropriate. Therefore, it is a good idea to choose someone that you trust as your agent. Please note: In most states, your spouse will be your default agent. If you are not married but are in a lifelong relationship your partner, he does not automatically become your agent. Make sure that you appoint your partner as your agent to ensure that he or she has control over your medical decisions if you are unable to make them.

Because your agent has whatever powers you give him or her, make sure that he or she understands your desires. Some of the decisions he or she may need to make include but are not limited to:

  • Deciding whether or not you will receive medical treatment
  • Withdrawing life-support

Living Will

A Living Will and HCPOA should be used in tandem, since one document complements the other. Your Living Will is a document that clearly expresses your desires. In short, your Living Will provides your medical team with instructions for how to carry out your wishes should you become incapacitated. For example, if you become brain dead, you can state in your Living Will that you wish to receive or not to receive life support.

By creating a Living Will, you ensure that your desires will be carried out without court involvement that can be costly and stressful for your family. Criteria for enacting a Living Will vary by state; so make sure that you consult with an attorney to ensure that your Living Will complies with the rules in your state.

Thomas McNally is the staff writer at the National Directory of Estate Planning, Probate & Elder Law Attorneys. McNally stresses the importance of finding a qualified estate planning attorney to ensure that your estate passes to whom you want, when you want, and is carried out in the manner you've chosen.
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Saturday, November 14, 2015

Why Advance Health Care Directives Are Important

Consider this scenario. You are in a hospital with a terminal illness, unconscious, connected to all kinds of medical machines, and has a very poor prognosis. Who will speak on your behalf during this time of illness? Who would tell the doctors, the nurses and your family members what your medical wishes are if ever you get into this terminal condition? Who would let your caregivers know what you would like to happen to you and your body in such a condition like this? Would you like to be kept alive by all means? Or would you rather decide not to be subjected to futile treatments knowing that this is not a dignified living for you? But how would you let everyone know all these wishes now that you are no longer capable of speaking up for yourself?

This is why Advance Health Care Directives (AHCD) are very important. As a clinical counselor working in a hospital for several years now, I have personally worked with families and witnessed them break apart because they could not agree in making medical and end-of-life decisions for the dying loved ones. Their loved ones, who were unable to speak up for themselves, did not have an advance directive. Remember the Terry Schiavo case?

I have witnessed many cases where, because patients did not have an AHCD, families and caregivers are plagued with guilt and have constantly asked themselves if they were making the "right" decision for their loved one or for themselves. Yet, I have also witnessed many cases where, because patients had an AHCD, their families and caregivers felt at peace, in spite of the pain, just because they knew they were honoring their loved one's medical wishes as reflected on their AHCD.


AHCD are legal documents that enable you to do the following:

1. Appoint or designate a primary and secondary power of attorneys for health care whom you trust to speak on your behalf and honor your medical wishes in an event that you could no longer speak up for yourself.
2. Appoint a primary physician whom you trust to be your doctor or caregiver.
3. Make your end-of-life wishes known.
4. Make your wishes known regarding organ donation.
5. Make your wishes known regarding pain control.

For an AHCD to be legal, it has to be signed by you (the person creating the document) before two witnesses. These witnesses could not be your designated power of attorneys or your immediate family members or your health caregivers where you receive medical care. Close friends or distant relatives could be witnesses. If you cannot find witnesses, the document could be notarized by a notary. The notary can only notarize an advance directive if you have a valid photo ID (e.g. driver license or passport). This process applies particularly in California. Other states may have different processes.

I would also like to mention that a Living Will is a kind of AHCD. Likewise, an AHCD could also be known as "Durable Power of Attorney for Health Care."


Once you created your AHCD, you keep the original and remember to keep it in an accessible place in your home. If possible, make several copies to give to your designated power of attorneys, your primary physician and to your hospital. I strongly encourage people to always bring a copy with them whenever they go to the hospital so that the hospital will not only have a copy of your document but also will know and honor your medical wishes. While creating an AHCD is not mandatory, it is a Federal Law that hospitals have to ask patients during their admission if they have an AHCD.


Most, if not all, hospitals have AHCD forms. You can always ask your hospital if they have available forms. You can also ask your doctor if he/she has a form. There are many websites now on the Internet that offer AHCD forms. Just do a search on "Advance Health Care Directives."
I believe that your completed (properly witnessed or notarized and signed) AHCD is legally recognized in states other then your own. However, since each state may have its own froms and probably laws on AHCD, the best thing to do is to always bring an extra copy with you when traveling.


Many folks think that an Advance Health Care Directive is only for patients who are terminally ill. Not so. Any competent adult, 18 years old and above, can fill out an AHCD. I remember dealing with the family of a 20 year old woman who ended up on a persistent vegetative state (PVS) as a result of a car accident. Her parents ended up divorcing just because they could not agree as to what to do with her in her grave condition. The mother believed that her daughter loved life so much that she would not like to be living in such a terrible medical condition where there is no dignity of life any longer. The father thought otherwise. This sad break-up of a family would have not happened if, even at early age, their daughter had an advance heatlh care directive.

I strongly encourage you to talk to your physician or family members about this difficult yet very important subject. I just hope that this article has been a source of help.

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Friday, November 13, 2015

Don't Put Off Getting a Power of Attorney

Do you think you need a Power of Attorney? If you think so then don't put it off and take any chances in the future. You need the time now to think about whom you can truly trust and at this point in your life you may find it hard to eliminate some of your closest family members or dearest friends. Just consider this, you are now mentally stable and it should be more simple to make those decisions now, than it would be in the future when maybe you don't have all of your mental powers with you. Now is the time to safeguard your future financial affairs and secure your assets.

Most of us have the wrong impression of Power of Attorney, we think that only the elderly need one or people with large massive fortunes. Please don't be mislead, we all should consider a Power of Attorney. You will have a form of peace of mind knowing should something happen to you; you will be taken care of legally. You want someone you can trust to look out for your matters.

The vital importance of a Power of Attorney could best be demonstrated by the fact if you should happen to contact a disabling disease which could render you incapable of making your own decisions. Should you have to be hospitalized, you want someone to pay your mortgage and take care of your banking needs; you don't want to loose all that you have worked hard for. A Power of Attorney can protect you legally with the local laws.

The laws are very much in your favor should you ever become incapable of taking care of your affairs. With a Power of Attorney in force, the courts will then step in and use their discretion on who will be in charge of all your affairs. The judge may appoint someone you do not fully trust, so you want to have full control and that is why it is so important to have a Power of Attorney.

So as a good suggestion, the best time for a Power of Attorney is NOW! You want to be protected now, you don't want to wait until it is to late and you don't have the power to help yourself.
So having said that, for your sake, please consider looking into the Power of Attorney aspect for your life.

Check out more information on Power Of Attorney as well as look as some of the legal forms and contracts that you may be considering []
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Wednesday, November 11, 2015

Top 6 Most Frequently Asked Questions in Expunging Your DUI Conviction Records in California

Like most states in US, California too allows you to expunge your DUI conviction record. Expunging your DUI conviction record will help you get rid of all the problems resulting from your offense and make you to experience the life like before. Regardless of whether your offense is misdemeanor or felony, they can usually be expunged. Following are the FAQ's which are sure to provide you an insight about expunging your DUI records in California:

What is expungement?

Expungement means sealing your DUI conviction record which practically means giving petition to the court to expunge your record and the court replaces your plea as not guilty and then dismisses your case. So when applying for a job or under any other circumstances you need not have to disclose that you have been convicted.

Who Is Eligible For expungement in California?

You are eligible for expungement:

  • if you are a first DUI offender who has only one charge for either a misdemeanor or felony
  • a year has passed since conviction
  • if you have completed probation successfully and not on probation for another offense
  • have no charges pending
  • have paid all the fines ordered by the court
How much does it cost to file for expungement? 

It costs between $50 and $80 to file for expunging your record. 

Will they need my presence at the court? 

No, your expungement lawyer can do it for you. 

What will I benefit from expunging my DUI conviction record? 

There are a lot you will benefit from expunging your record such as employment, licensing etc,. 

What expungement won't do? 

Your expunged case can still be used for increasing your punishment when you again caught up for a DUI or other criminal cases.

The DUI Process manual provides solution related to expunging your DUI record, getting your driver's license back, saving a lot of money on your auto insurance and even saving money throughout your DUI process no matter what state (US) you are located in. Article Source:

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Tuesday, November 10, 2015

Estate and Retirement Planning - How Can My Estate Avoid Probate?

If you are a retiree, you likely have heard many claims made about probate problems. The word itself may even fill you with dread. If you are planning your estate, there are some things you should consider concerning probate. In this, as in all things, it is important to take a balanced approach. Let's review some of the issues pertaining to probate. Then you can decide if you need to approach your estate planning differently.

What is the purpose of probate?

You have heard this word many times, but may never have considered what it means. In legal terms, probate is the period of time during which a will is proven authentic or valid. The purpose of probate is to distribute an estate according to the decedent's wishes described in his or her will. Typically, the first step of probate is to use the person's probate assets and property to pay all debts. After that, any remaining assets and property are distributed to persons named in the will. There may be costs associated with the probate process.

Probate ensures that your wishes for the distribution of your estate are carried out upon your death. Probate is a public process. If your estate is of any size, your heirs could suddenly have new friends trying to advise them on how to manage their newly inherited assets.
People often assume all assets are subject to probate, which raises the following question.

Are all assets subject to probate?

No. Some assets are excluded from probate. An example would be assets that are held in joint ownership with rights of survivorship, such as your personal home. Other assets not subject to probate are those governed by a beneficiary designation. This would include assets such as your 401(k), IRAs, life insurance policies, and annuities. Additionally, assets held in a trust are not subject to probate. If the majority of your estate assets are held in accounts of this type, you may not have that much to be concerned about.

What about my brokerage and bank accounts?

These types of accounts can be set up to transfer on death (TOD) to a beneficiary. This designation allows you to pass securities and banking accounts directly to another person (your TOD beneficiary) upon your death without having to go through probate. By setting your accounts up this way, the executor or administrator of your estate will not have to take any action to ensure that your accounts transfer to the person you have designated. The TOD beneficiaries will have to take steps to retitle the accounts in their name, but this is not a very cumbersome process.

As you can see, probate may not be as bad as you have heard. There are many things to consider during the estate planning process.  

You should talk to an estate planning attorney who can advise you about your situation.

Radon Stancil is a Certified Financial Planner™, the gold standard among financial planners. For well over a decade, he has helped people create personalized roadmaps to financial retirement success. As an author and a financial column writer, he enjoys simply and clearly explaining to others the financial tools that can offer the greatest benefits. Radon believes there are no cookie-cutter approaches to financial planning. His specialty is helping each individual create a retirement plan that is as unique as they are. His office is located at 4101 Lake Boone Trail, Suite 122, Raleigh NC. You can call him at 919-787-8866 or visit his website at
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Monday, November 9, 2015

Medical Power of Attorney

A Medical Power of Attorney gives specific instructions, prepared in advance, that are intended to direct medical care for an individual if he or she becomes unable to do so in the future. Plainly speaking, a Medical Power of Attorney is made in anticipation of a medical emergency. If you are in an accident or suffer a disease or disorder that may leave you incapable of making a sound medical decision, a Medical Power of Attorney permits you to choose in advance who will represent and enforce your interests. The person authorizing the other to act on his behalf is the "principal" and the one authorized to act is the "agent".

A Medical Power of Attorney should be given to someone whom you trust unreservedly; this is an individual who will be making decisions for you when you are incapacitated, even if you are not on life support or terminally ill. However, an agent does not have the authority to act until the principal's attending physician certifies in writing that the principal is incompetent.

A Medical Power of Attorney is not legally effective unless the principal signs a disclosure statement that he or she has read and understood the contents before signing the document. If the principal is physically unable to sign, another person may sign the document in his or her presence and at his or her directive. Two qualified witnesses, who are competent adults, must witness the procedure. At least one of them must not be related to the principal, the principal's attending physician or the attending physician's employee, entitled to a part of the principal's estate, an individual who has a claim against the principal's estate, or an officer, director, partner or business office employee of the healthcare facility.

An individual may revoke the Medical Power of Attorney by notifying either the agent or the principal's health care provider of his or her intent to revoke the document. This revocation will take place regardless of the principal's capability to make sound medical judgments. Further, if the principal executes a later Medical Power of Attorney, then all prior ones are revoked. If the principal designates his or her spouse to be the agent, a divorce revokes the Medical Power of Attorney.
An agent, acting in good faith, will not incur criminal or civil liability for a medical decision made under a Medical Power of Attorney.

Power Of Attorney [] provides detailed information about power of attorney, power of attorney forms, medical power of attorney, limited power of attorney and more. Power Of Attorney is the sister site of Divorce Legal Forms [].
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Sunday, November 8, 2015

Saturday, November 7, 2015

The Importance of a Healthcare Proxy and Living Will

A living will is a legal document that describes your end of life wishes. You create it when you are alive, but it does not become valid until you are in an end of life situation. With a living will your agent(s) have final decision, but it should be made with medical doctors and other healthcare officials to be sure you are given the correct prognosis and so that your agents can make the right decision. You should give a copy of your living will and healthcare proxy to your local hospital, doctor, nursing facility or hospice care agency.


The living will covers common decisions your loved ones can make when you are near to dying. You have the choice to fill out the form in whatever fashion you like. Choices can be made regarding keeping you alive by machines, being kept on a feeding tube with no hope of recovery, being in a persistent vegetative state and more.


Living wills are available online and can be obtained for free. You need not pay for a living will to be drafted. Each state has its own differences so be sure you use the one for your state.

Once completed, the form should be signed in the presence of two witnesses. The witnesses sign the document and attest that you signed of your own free will and that they are not your appointed health care agents or proxies. Some states do not allow relatives or people responsible for make medical decisions to be witnesses.

In your living will, you will designate someone who will be your proxy or agent. This person will be the one you choose to carry out the details of the document. Choose a family member who understands your wishes and has agreed to see that they are carried out. Do not choose a doctor or any employee of a hospital or institution that is treating you at the time it is executed. You can change your agent or proxy, but be sure that whoever got the original one has the new one replaced. The same applies to other changes to the document.

Most people don't like thinking about these things, however they are extremely important. You don't know when you will be in a situation in which this document will be needed. Be sure to complete it now before you can't. Consider all of the possibilities there are regarding your last wishes medically. There are certain powers given to your agent(s). Here are some general rules:

• "Full power to consent, refuse consent, or withdraw consent to all medical, surgical, hospital and related health care treatments and procedures on my behalf, according to my wishes as stated in this document, or as stated in a separate Living Will, Health Care Directive, or other similar type document, or as expressed to my agent by me;"
• "Full power to make decisions on whether to provide, withhold, or withdraw artificial nutrition and hydration on my behalf, according to my wishes as stated in this document, or as stated in a separate Living Will, Health Care Directive, or other similar type document, or as expressed to my agent by me;"
• "Full power to review and receive any information regarding my physical or mental health, including medical and hospital records, in accordance with the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act of 1996, 42 USC 1320d ("HIPAA");"

• "Full power to sign any releases in order to obtain this information;"
• "Full power to sign any documents required to request, withdraw, or refuse treatment or to be released or transferred to another medical facility."

Your document should contain sections covering the following situations:

1. "If I have an incurable and irreversible (terminal) condition that will result in my death within a relatively short time, I direct that... "

2. "If I am diagnosed as being in an irreversible coma and, to a reasonable degree of medical certainty, I will not regain consciousness, I direct that... "

3. "If I am diagnosed as being in a persistent vegetative state and, to a reasonable degree of medical certainty, I will not regain consciousness, I direct that... "

You are able to decide which choices can be made.

Other areas to be covered include:

• Intravenous and Tube Feeding
• Life Sustaining Surgery
• New Medical Developments
• Other Non-Conventional Treatments
• Home or Hospital


A living will gives you the power to choose how you would like to be cared for in the days leading to your death. It also removes some of the burden from your family when they know that they are following your wishes.

Don't fail to prepare this document. As has been stated herein already, you don't know when you will be in a situation in which this document will be needed.

We provide accounting and tax preparation services and we are open year round. We also prepare living wills at a reasonable rate. Visit our website for a listing of all services:
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Friday, November 6, 2015

Thursday, November 5, 2015

Do Not Wait Until It Is Too Late! Set Up A Durable Power Of Attorney While You Still Can

Many things in life need to be decided in advance, but none more so than durable power of attorney. Why is this legal document so important? Because in it you indicate who will handle your finances and make decisions for you while you are of sound mind and body, or should you become mentally or physically incapacitated. This trusted individual is known as your agent.

Once you have decided to arrange for a durable power of attorney, how do you choose your agent? Since this individual will be stepping into your shoes to undertake as many or as few of your financial and property matters as you decide, you must choose someone whom you trust absolutely, who has the ability to manage money, and is at least 18 years of age.

Moreover, you must set up a durable power of attorney while you still have the mental capacity to sign a legal document and to make decisions for yourself. Once you can no longer do this, it is too late to give anyone else the authority to do so. Your wishes regarding bank accounts, financial transactions or real estate dealings could be largely ignored or unknown.

Normally people choose a trusted family member, spouse, friend or legal advisor for their agent. What is crucial to note here is that if you would like your spouse to manage your affairs in circumstances foreseen and unforeseen, you must arrange in advance for him or her to have a durable power of attorney. Lingering in the mind of the public is the misperception that your spouse can automatically sign documents for you if you are mentally or physically incapacitated, but this is not the case.

One of the great benefits of the durable power of attorney instrument is its flexibility and convenience. When your durable power of attorney takes effect and the powers that you grant your agent can be as broad or as narrow as you choose.

For example, you can be completely competent to manage all your affairs, but choose to give your agent power immediately because you would like him or her to act on your behalf if you are on vacation, out of the country, or sick. For a couple who moves to Florida to retire, it is much more convenient to have their New Jersey-based son, who is their agent, sell their New Jersey home.

By the same token, you can grant your agent power that becomes effective only in the future, whether you remain competent to handle your own affairs, or not. In either case, the powers that you grant your agent are completely up to you and can encompass as many or as few tasks as you designate.
Some of the powers that you can give your agent include the authority to sign checks, make deposits, pay bills, file tax returns, make health decisions (the subject of another article), sell property, or invest money.

You can also empower your agent to hire individuals to manage your business and personal matters, whether it is as simple as lawn mowing or as complex as investment advising. The only restriction is that your agent cannot write and sign a will for you, and his or her powers become void upon your death. Whatever powers you designate, you can also revoke at any time.

How is a durable power of attorney different from a power of attorney that is not durable, and why is appointing a durable power of attorney so much more important to your future? If you were to grant a non-durable power of attorney to your agent, it would only become effective only upon your showing signs of mental incapacitation.This means that if you are physically incapacitated, your agent does not have the authority to act upon your behalf.

As the following example shows, a non-durable power of attorney is not at all flexible.

When an elderly widower was hospitalized and physically incapacitated for several weeks, he was unable to rollover a CD and pay the premium on his life insurance policy in time.

Because he had previously arranged for his daughter to have a non-durable power of attorney only, she could not carry out either of these tasks for him. She was neither able to take advantage of a new CD offer with a better rate, nor was she able to prevent the life insurance policy from lapsing. Had the father arranged for his daughter to have a durable power of attorney, she would have been able to act on his behalf in both of these matters.

Finally, a durable power of attorney is much more affordable than the alternative: setting up a guardianship. If you have already planned for a comprehensive, durable power of attorney, and you become mentally incapacitated, the need for a guardianship is obviated. Establishing up a guardianship can take months of court time and medical testimony, as well as costing thousands of dollars.

Ultimately, it is up to you and your lawyer to decide how to best ensure that your affairs, whether in the present or the future, are managed according to your wishes. A well planned durable power of attorney can do just that.

Nicholas Giuditta is a trust and estates lawyer in Cranford, NJ. He prepares estate plans for high net worth individuals that protect their loved ones and preserve their assets. Find out how your family can benefit by visiting
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Wednesday, November 4, 2015

Understanding the Difference Between a Will and a Living Trust

When planning for the future of your children as you get older, there are a few options on how to pass on your assets such as property, life insurance, stocks, etc. The two major ways of stating and distributing your assets after your passing is with a living trust or will. When you hear the words trust fund or wills, it refers to estate planning. Although there are different trusts out there, the main one I will focus on is a living trust.


A will is a document that is created to help distribute assets and properties to a beneficiary after one passes away. With a will, it will be submitted through a probate process, which is a court process. In this process, the courts will validate the will and ensure that all the instructions are followed properly while also repaying any creditors. The downfall to a will is that it becomes public so anyone can see the distribution of your assets to your selected beneficiaries. On top of not having privacy, it could take several months to even years for the court to sort everything out!

Living Trust

A living trust is a legal document that states three parties: Grantor/Trustor, Trustee, and Beneficiaries. The grantor/trustor is the individual or couple who establishes/creates the trust. The trustee is the person nominated to be in control of the trusts assets. In many cases, the trustee is the same as the grantor/trustor. Beneficiaries are those at the receiving end who will benefit from the trust. A trust is beneficial to most people who have property worth $100,000+ and/or those who have large amounts of assets. In certain states, properties at $100,000+ can be subject to legal fees in the probate process. With a living trust, it bypasses the whole probate process and all assets can be immediately accessed by the beneficiaries. As opposed to a will, a living trust is private so it does not go through a probate process, therefore it is NOT a public record. Things that can be listed in a living trust include: stocks, bonds, real estate, life insurance, personal property, etc.

A trust is beneficial for estate planning for those who have large amounts of assets. By establishing a specific living trust known as an A-B Trust, an individual can reduce the amount of taxes paid significantly. For example, in 2012, the current estate tax is $5.12M with a cap at 35% over the $5.12M. In an A-B Trust with a couple passing their assets to their one kid, they would designate half the fund to the surviving spouse and the other half to the kid. The surviving spouse and the kid will then each receive a tax break of $5.12M giving a sheltered total of $10.24M from estate taxes. When the surviving spouse passes, then his/her half is giving to the kid who is then subject to another $5.12M tax break. Unlike a trust, a will however will be only have a tax break of $5.12M.


When comparing the differences of having a last will versus a living trust, it shows that the trust comes out on top. A trust will help to give privacy, immediate access to assets from beneficiaries, AND tax breaks. For those who are near the age of deciding what to pass on to their children or know someone in that situation, help them understand the difference of the two and sway them toward a living trust if feasible!

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Tuesday, November 3, 2015

The Advantages of Making a Will Which Can Serve As a Catalyst for Preparing It

Like most legal documents, the importance of a will increases with its acceptance amongst authorities. Making a Will is a complete legal procedure and its advantages are many which make the preparation imperative on the part of the owner. But the legal responsibility for making a Will shouldn't be taken in a negative light and procrastinated about. Instead the very advantages of making a Will could be the single greatest catalyst for the preparation of a Will by the owner of the assets. Below are a few of the major advantages of making a Will that could be the catalyst for the owner to prepare it.

Also we would like to state that people rarely find making a Will to be a pleasant task. Preparing a Will is a metaphor for our own mortality which people don't want to face. But as they say- No one is immortal or escapes death and taxes! Who knows? You could compromise with your own mortal end during the preparation and come out with a better view on life.

The advantages of making a Will are:

No dispute between dependents: There can be no chance of any conflict or dispute between the several dependents of the property if a will is already made. The will perfectly sums up what is left to whom and that itself diffuses any chance of conflict plus the division is also ensured by law of the land. Without a Will, inheritance disputes often run into years and decades which are not a viable option.

Lack of ambiguity: A Will is a legal document that clearly states the division of the property and that in itself clearly puts out the lack of ambiguity.

Property Management: The property can now be easily managed or divided according to the directions given in the Will and that leads to a better sense of property management.

Appointment of Executor/Guardian or Trustee: Will often appoints a responsible person as a Executor or a Trustee who acts as the overseer of the property. This also is important when the beneficiary is a minor or of unsound mind and cannot look after the assets.

Disclosure: All the property hidden or otherwise has to be correctly shown while making a Will. This procedure eliminates the chances of any secretive assets and the process will be highly beneficial to the beneficiaries of the How to make a will. offers easy, legal, affordable and online Will Writing solution - write a Will in just 30 minutes - no calls, no meetings, no advocates, etc..
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Monday, November 2, 2015

Sunday, November 1, 2015

Do Not Resuscitate (DNR) vs. Living Will

Do Not Resuscitate (DNR) order covers two types of emergencies: when your heart stops beating or you stop breathing. Living wills covers almost all types of life-prolonging treatments and procedures.