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July 2015 Archives

Wills and trusts are only the beginning of estate planning

Many Ohio residents take a rather narrow-minded approach when it comes to estate planning. They focus almost exclusively on the creation of wills and trusts, and forget to give thought to the more personal aspects of an estate plan. The result can be an effective transfer of wealth from one party to another, but a dearth of interpersonal connectivity. The following items are just some of the more personal aspects of many estate plans.

How a spouse's death can complicate Medicaid

For many Ohio families, estate planning focuses on the transfer of assets from one generation to the next with provisions put into place for a surviving spouse. It is difficult to plan for every possible set of circumstances that might arise, but families should strive to cover as many bases as possible in their approach. For example, couples should think about the impact that their estate plan would have if a surviving spouse should require residential nursing care following his or her partner's death.

IRS could end powerful estate planning option

In the effort to shield assets from excessive taxation both during and after an individual's life, some in Ohio turn to limited family partnerships. This little-known estate planning tool can give families the flexibility needed to retain control over their accumulated wealth, while also preserving assets to pass down to children and grandchildren. The Internal Revenue Service, however, may have this approach within its crosshairs, and the benefits of a limited family partnership could lessen or disappear completely in the months ahead.

Helping elderly veterans with benefits issues

When a person is in their elderly years, they may be facing having a lower income due to no longer working. At this same time, they may also be facing new types of costs, such as nursing home costs and new medical costs. Thus, every possible stream of income can be an important one for an elderly individual. Consequently, it can be very important for elderly individuals to understand what sorts of benefits they may be able to qualify for given their particular circumstances.

Chapter 7 bankruptcy and medical debt

For millions of Americans, medical debt poses a serious financial issue. An unexpected illness or injury can throw an individual or family into serious financial turmoil, and the result can be damaged credit, increased stress and the inability to attain new lines of credit. The issue has received widespread attention, from various consumer advocacy groups all the way up to the Unites States government. While reforms are underway in the way that medical debt is handled, Chapter 7 bankruptcy remains one of the most powerful tools for Ohio families facing this type of debt.

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