Just Say No? Medical Marijuana in Nursing Homes

The legalization of marijuana is on the ballot in California this November, but California isn’t the only part of the country where marijuana is making news.  The use of marijuana for medical purposes is being debated around the nation—especially as concerns elderly patients in nursing homes which receive federal funding through Medicare or Medicaid. This […]

How to Find the Best Long-Term Care Policy

As the average life-span increases—and the cost of medical care along with it—more and more people are beginning to see the need for long-term care insurance.  Simply having a retirement plan isn’t enough anymore. Saving for retirement now means not only saving for your living expenses, it means preparing and saving for your health care […]

Take Care in Making Large Gifts to Heirs

Do you have a provision in your will or trust to pass your house on to your kids when you die?  If so, you may want to consider giving the house to them now, before the end of the year. According to this article in the New York Times, doing so could be beneficial to […]

Plan Ahead to Avoid Financial Pitfalls in 2011

A recent article in U.S. News and World Report points out that although “the Great Recession may technically be over… Consumers [still] don’t want to spend and are still slowly digging their way out of the mountain of mortgage and personal debt that helped fuel the downturn.” Among those groups who are still struggling the […]

Can You Foolproof Your Power of Attorney?

“The best laid plans of mice and men often go awry.”  Although we hate to admit it, this statement will also sometimes apply to estate planning; and more often than we would like, it happens with powers of attorney. A power of attorney is the document in which you nominate an agent (or attorney-in-fact) to […]

What Is Probate?

With all the recent news about what will happen with estate taxes, the process of probate has come up quite a bit.  Sometimes probate is mentioned in a low-key, matter-of-fact kind of way; at other times it is presented as something scary, and to be avoided at all costs. We know our readers have seen […]

Prepare Now for an Uncertain Future

There’s a useful saying that goes something like this: “Expect the best, but prepare for the worst.”  Never has that saying been as useful as it is right now in regards to asset protection and estate planning.  As Laura Lallos mentions in her article in the Morningstar Advisor, “Estate attorneys are trained to prepare for […]

What to Do With Your Estate Plan After a Divorce

When it comes to estate planning, the steps you take after a divorce are not so different from the steps you’ll take after a death—many of the phone calls will be the same, many of the changes you make and details you change will be similar.  This all makes sense, because a divorce is basically […]

10 Phone Calls to Make After the Death of a Loved One

Coping with the death of a loved one can be a crushing task.  There are so many things to do and details to remember; all of this at a time when each small task can serve as a reminder of your loss. At such a time it can be helpful to know that you’re not […]

Power of Attorney from the Agent’s Perspective

In our last post we discussed the importance of choosing the right person as your agent or executor and some of the things to consider as you make your choice.  In today’s post we’ll look at the agent/executor situation from a different perspective—that of the person serving in the role. What happens if you’re named […]