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Trust Me, You’re Gonna Like This – The See-Through Trust as a Beneficiary

August 12th, 2019 Jim Blankenship – https://blankenshipfinancial.com/ One area that often gets short shrift in discussions of IRAs and beneficiary designation is the use of a trust as the beneficiary. Part of the reason behind this may be the perceived complexity of trusts in general; at any rate, it’s not…

Court Cannot Reform Medicaid Recipient’s Deed Because It Would Affect Medicaid Agency’s Right to Estate Recovery

A Massachusetts land court rules that a Medicaid recipient’s estate may not reform a deed to treat the recipient’s property as though it was transferred before she died because the reformation would unfairly prejudice the right of the Medicaid agency to recover from her estate. Casey v. Papamechail (Mass. Land Ct., No….

Revocable Trusts Are Not Always Treated the Same as an Individual

June 1, 2021 by Steve Hartnett  A revocable trust is usually treated the same as the individual who created the trust. For federal income tax purposes, a revocable trust is a “grantor trust” under section 676 of the Code. Therefore, all items of income and expense of the trust flow through to…

How to Start a Funeral Planning Conversation

May 27, 2021 by Gail Rubin Estate planning attorneys see it all the time. Most clients avoid the funeral planning conversation, even though advance planning can reduce stress at a time of grief, save money and head off family conflict. We have ample evidence that humans have a 100% mortality rate. It’s…

How You Can End Up in Medicare’s Donut Hole, and How You Get Out

Medicare prescription drug (Part D) plans can have a coverage gap—called the “donut hole”–which limits how much Medicare will pay for your drugs until you pay a certain amount out of pocket. Although the gap has gotten much smaller since Medicare Part D was introduced in 2006, there still may be…

“Last Will and Testament” Origin

Have you ever wondered why the dispositive instrument in which you express your wishes is called a “Last Will and Testament?” Few people, including Estate Planning attorneys, know the reason. In fact, the history is a little muddy. Occasionally, clients will ask this question. Now you’ll know the answer! It’s…

Saying Medicaid Estate Recovery Keeps Families in Poverty, Advocacy Groups Call for Abolishing It

To qualify for Medicaid coverage of long-term care, you must satisfy very complicated financial eligibility rules—rules that often can be traps for the unwary. One of the most significant traps is Medicaid’s right to recover its expenses from your estate after you die – a practice known as “estate recovery.” Under…

Fair Isn’t Always Equal and Vice Versa

When deciding how to split your assets among your children at death, there are many different factors to consider. Equality is certainly one of those factors. But it’s not the only factor. Fair doesn’t always mean equal and vice versa. Here are some situations in which some parents might think…

President Biden Proposes Billions in Increased Funding for Home Health Care

President Biden has introduced a plan to spend $400 billion over eight years on home and community-based care for the elderly and people with disabilities. The money would go to expand access to care and support higher-paying caregiving jobs.  As the elderly population grows, our long-term care system is becoming…

Use It Before It’s Gone

April 20, 2021 by Steve Hartnett The current estate tax exemption is $11.7 million. This is a record high. The “permanent” exclusion is $5 million and is adjusted for inflation from a 2011 base year. Then the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act temporarily doubled it. At the end of 2025, the doubling…