1. A Not-So-Happy Accident: Bob Ross’s Estate Planning Failures Leave His Son With Next to Nothing—Part 2

    As the host of the wildly popular The Joy of Painting TV series on PBS, Bob Ross became a pop-culture icon, who was equally famous for his giant head of hair, soothing baritone voice, and folksy demeanor as he was for his iconic landscape paintings. And like so many other artists, Bob’s artwork and image would become even more popular following Bob’s death in 1995. Bob…Read More

  2. When It Comes to Inheritance, Treating Children Equally Not Always the Best Plan

    While most parents have the inclination to treat all their children equally when it comes to an inheritance, Family Wealth Lawyers know that this is not always the wise choice.  Here are some scenarios when an unequal distribution may be better: Children of unequal wealth – If you have one child that is a successful entrepreneur and another that is a social worker, you …Read More

  3. Avoid these 10 Common Estate Planning Mistakes

    As a Family Wealth Lawyer, I see many of the same estate planning mistakes made time and again by people who either fail to plan properly or who use “do-it-yourself” estate planning websites or forms in an effort to save money.   Without professional guidance, this can cause more problems for your heirs and end up depleting estate assets by far more than what you coul…Read More

  4. How to Create a Pet Trust

    There is no doubt we are a nation of pet lovers. Unfortunately, the law as it is currently written views pets as property, so providing for your pet in your will won’t work. So how do you protect your favorite fur-person? With a pet trust. To create a pet trust, you should first discuss your wishes for your pet(s) with a Family Wealth Lawyer so your pet trust will be exe…Read More

  5. How to Correctly Name Beneficiaries for Your IRAs

    You could be unintentionally reducing your family’s wealth potential if you do not properly designate the beneficiaries of your IRAs. Improper estate planning could mean that your IRA assets could pass to the wrong people or entities, so how you execute your beneficiary designations is critically important. Here are some of the steps that need to be taken to properly nam…Read More

  6. What a Will Won’t Do

    There are a number of essential things a last will and testament can do for you, such as distribute family heirlooms and name a guardian for minor children, but there are some equally important things a will won’t do: Diminish estate taxes – a will won’t help you decrease your estate taxes, but a Family Wealth Lawyer can advise you on what kind of trust instruments c…Read More

  7. Estate Planning for the Blended Family

    Balancing the needs of a multi-generational blended family with your own wishes can be a complicated task, especially when it comes to estate planning. With a majority of Americans not only marrying once, but twice, three or even four times during their lives, it is a challenge that will come to many. Even when blended family members get along, estate planning can be compl…Read More

  8. Longevity Insurance Can Help Those Worried About Outliving Their Money

    With longer life spans comes the necessity to be sure your money is around at least as long as you are.  Longevity insurance – where you pay a certain sum to an insurer when you’re in your 60s in exchange for monthly payments 20 or more years down the road – is a lesser known insurance product that is growing in popularity, especially considering potential cuts to S…Read More

  9. How to Pass On Family Heirlooms Without Causing a Family Feud

    The holidays are traditionally the time for family gatherings, where generations come together and perform holiday rituals that have been passed down through the years.  Part of those rituals includes material possessions – a well-worn set of silver at the holiday table, grandmother’s china, or treasured tree ornaments from childhood. When we sit down to that holiday …Read More

  10. How to Talk to a Loved One About Estate Planning

    Estate planning rarely comes up in the course of regular conversation and if it does, it is usually involves what has happened to a celebrity’s fortune after his or her death.  The distance is safe, so the conversation can take place. But what if you need to discuss estate planning with a loved one – either your own estate plan or the one they have (or should have)? S…Read More

  11. 6 Things You Should NOT Include In Your Will

    A will is one of the most basic estate planning tools. While relying solely on a will is rarely a suitable option for most people, just about every estate plan includes this key document in one form or another. A will is used to designate how you want your assets distributed to your surviving loved ones upon your death. If you die without a will, state law governs how your…Read More

  12. Larry King’s Death Highlights the Importance of Updating Your Estate Plan for Divorce and Death – Part 2

    Legendary TV and radio host, Larry King, died at Cedars-Sinai Medical Center in Los Angeles on January 23rd, 2021 at age 87. Larry was hospitalized in December due to COVID-19, but he’d recently been moved from the ICU to a regular hospital room after recovering from the virus. However, the famed broadcaster suffered from a number of other health conditions over the year…Read More