Archive Posts

Archive Post

WHOA… it costs a lot to die

One of the first calls a family usually makes after a loved one passes is to their attorney, at which point we begin to explain the process of settling the estate.  And the response is unanimous – it costs how much?!? Among the ever-increasing funeral expenses is the cost to settle...

CONTINUE READING

Archive Post

The Opioid Epidemic

Sadly, it has become standard to ask my clients whether they have any concerns with a loved one with substance abuse.  In the past, this subject was taboo – client’s preferring to keep skeletons hidden. However, today with the opioid endemic unyielding to discriminatory factors such as race, age and...

CONTINUE READING

Archive Post

What You Don’t Know That You Don’t Know: Estate Planning

It isn’t uncommon that I’m told that “a neighbor suggested…” or “my brother-in-law said…” when asking a client why a document was drafted a certain way or why an account lists a specific beneficiary instead of all the children equally. Although well meaning, this “advice” may lead to disastrous results. Everyone’s...

CONTINUE READING

Archive Post

Can You Protect Your IRA?

You’ve worked so very hard during your lifetime and made a concerted effort to save for your retirement, often times with the goal of leaving a piece of your legacy for your children. But is your IRA protected? Keep reading to find the top 5 reasons why naming an individual as the...

CONTINUE READING

Archive Post

Are You ABLE Account Ready?

Do you have a loved one with disabilities?  If so, do you wonder what the smartest way is to save money for them and to provide for them in the future? If so, keep reading to learn whether an ABLE account is a way to go rather than a traditional special...

CONTINUE READING

Archive Post

What to Look For When Hiring an Elder Law Attorney

I’m sure you’ve heard the phrase “elder law” before and may even have met an elder law attorney but do you know what it actually means to be an elder law attorney? I’m often asked if, as an elder law attorney, I only work with old people. The truth of the...

CONTINUE READING

Archive Post

Why Hire An Elder Law Attorney

I'm sure you've heard the phrase "Elder Law" before … or have met an elder law attorney but have you ever wondered what that term means and what exactly an ‘elder law" does? Keep reading to learn why sometimes it's important to meet with a specialist when it comes to your...

CONTINUE READING

Archive Post

8 Questions to Consider When Applying for Veteran Benefits

Veteran Benefits. The phrase is thrown around but what are these benefits? Did you know that there’s a benefit available for our veterans and their spouses to assist with the overwhelming cost of health care? VA Benefits – most people are aware that they exist but don’t know all that is...

CONTINUE READING

Archive Post

How to Avoid a Messy Litigation Upon Your Death

Sometimes, even basic documents can lead to messy litigation upon your passing. When discussing estate planning, most of my clients skate past the topic of choosing someone to act as a power of attorney or executor they trust. Of course, we trust our child… I’ve heard it many times. But what...

CONTINUE READING

Archive Post

5 Biggest Mistakes to Avoid When You’re the Executor of an Estate

You have your documents drafted, signed and put away… most people don’t discuss the estate administration process before a loved one dies because let’s face it, who really wants to? But if the person you named as your Executor doesn’t know what to do, they could fall victim to one...

CONTINUE READING

Archive Post

The Dish On Pet Trusts in Pennsylvania

Most people who have a pet treat them as a part of their family. Others go so far as to provide for them in their estate planning documents. But what happens if you don’t have a will but have a trust instead? Why probate your estate just for your dog’s...

CONTINUE READING

Archive Post

Social Security Planning Tips for a Loved One with Special Needs

A challenging and crucial element of special needs planning involves staying current with the continually evolving policies and regulations of public assistance agencies, like the Social Security Administration. These ever-evolving policies have an immediate effect for someone on public benefits. Without staying up to date, this could lead to a reduction...

CONTINUE READING

Archive Post

Estate Planning: What I Wish All Parents Knew Before Dying

As a concierge attorney, oftentimes I find myself sitting with my clients in their living rooms and at their kitchen tables listening to their problems, their concerns, and helping them navigate their goals. And believe me, I’ve heard it all. Let’s face it; most people don’t want to talk about what...

CONTINUE READING

Archive Post

2 Reasons We Procrastinate About Estate Planning

My clients are intelligent people. What stops them from initially reaching out to me when they begin having thoughts and ideas about planning for their future? The uncertainty of our futures – whether it be an unexpected illness or death, even the idea of living to the age of 95 is...

CONTINUE READING

Archive Post

Steps for Charitable Giving

Many people choose to lower their tax bill by making charitable contributions. There are certain steps that a person can take to be sure that their contributions are reflected on their tax returns as well as in their estate plan. But how? With the recent election, regardless of which way you...

CONTINUE READING

Archive Post

Estate Planning for Same Sex Couples

In 2014, after a whirlwind year for same sex couples, the United States Supreme Court struck down portions of the Federal Defense of Marriage Act and then the US District Court ruled that Pennsylvania’s ban on same-sex marriage was unconstitutional. This is amazing… but now what do we do? As a result...

CONTINUE READING

Archive Post

Estate Planning for Your Special Needs Loved One

You’ve been designated as the trustee of a special needs trust. Or maybe you have a child with a special needs trust. You know that it’s important to plan ahead so that they don’t lose their benefits, but now what? First party special needs trust, self-settled trust, d4a, d4c third party...

CONTINUE READING

Archive Post

Estate Planning FAQs Part 2

Here are some frequently asked questions (FAQs) about Estate Planning and other legal matters. What is a probate? Probate is a legal process in which a court appoints someone, subject to a judge's supervision, to manage a descendant's estate, including paying the debts and distributing the property of the descendant. What is a...

CONTINUE READING

Archive Post

Estate Planning FAQs Part 1

What is a living trust? A living trust is a legal entity, sometimes referred to as a revocable living trust, created by a person to hold title to his or her property in order to avoid the probate process. How does a living trust avoid probate? A living trust allows you to avoid...

CONTINUE READING

Archive Post

Estate Planning for a Blended Family

It’s no secret that it’s likely that you may end up being married or in a long term relationship with more than one person during your lifetime. A blended family can take several forms – a married couple who has children from a previous relationship, families with children who are in...

CONTINUE READING

Archive Post

Estate Planning Tips for Women

Women, on average live longer than men. How does this average involve your estate planning? As a result of the longevity of women over men, there is an increased need to plan for physical and/or mental incapacity that can occur in your later years. Discuss with your estate planning attorney...

CONTINUE READING

Archive Post

It Costs Big Bucks To Die

I recently had a client who hired me to settle her mom’s estate. She cried in disbelief when she realized how expensive everything was. It costs a lot to die! Read on to learn how to prevent this same reaction from your daughter when it’s your turn to go. When we think...

CONTINUE READING