Last October, music fans of all ages were undoubtedly sad to hear the news that legendary musician Lou Reed had died of complications from a recent liver transplant. The long-time solo artist and lead singer for the Velvet Underground, known for his monotone singing style, was viewed by many of one of the more influential voices of the New York music scene in the 60s and 70s.
When parents of any age sit down to discuss their goals for their estate plan with a legal professional, they almost always indicate that their primary motivation is ensuring the wellbeing of their children.
Even the most casual sports fan understands and appreciates just how much professional sports franchises are now worth thanks to everything from lucrative media broadcast deals and endorsement agreements to ticket sales and general stadium revenue.
There's no question that there are certain tasks that many of us know are important but still put off doing because we are perhaps dreading the time commitment they may entail. For instance, these tasks may include doing our taxes, refinancing our mortgage, examining our retirement investments and, of course, executing an estate plan.
Irrevocable trusts are a popular tool in estate planning, since they offer a secure and private way to transfer assets to the next generation while minimizing the tax impact on one’s estate. These types of trusts have a lot of benefits with one major caveat – the person creating the trust must give up control of the trust and the assets. This means they must appoint a third party trustee to manage the trust on behalf of the beneficiaries. Trustees have been the primary source of management for trusts in the past, but recently as trust and tax laws have been changing, more people are seeing a need for a second set of eyes in the form of a trust prosecutor.
It doesn’t take an expert to see that the landscape of the modern family is changing a lot these days. From second and third marriages to long term relationships that do not lead to marriage, to relationships that yield children but no long term commitment, there is no one way to create a family these days. As a result, there is no one way to create an appropriate estate plan that will account for everyone who you consider family. Estate planning is one of the areas of life where we have to take a step back and carefully consider the best way to care for our loved ones.
An estate plan is essential for the proper distribution of assets according to someone's wishes. Estate planning can also help avoid a future family disaster down the road. Usually included in an estate plan are wills, trusts and a power of attorney. A power of attorney is one of the most crucial components for Minnesota grantors to have in a well-organized estate plan.
A lot of Minnesota readers know that a big element in estate planning is tax planning. It is not everyone’s top priority, but for those who may have estates near or over the amount for the federal or state exemptions, planning in advance for tax efficiency can be an important way to pass more assets onto the next generation.
Estate planning is an important part of becoming an adult. It is a responsibility that many people leave until they reach a certain life event. This might be graduating from college, buying a home, or having a child. However, it is important that anyone over the age of 18 takes steps to ensure their wishes would be followed if the unexpected was to happen.
The law and technology are always in a state of tension, since technology can evolve quickly and the law may drag behind. Often we find ourselves trying to apply decades or centuries-old legal rules to a totally new situation, and sometimes it is hard to find the right answer.