Why You Should Create a Trust To Protect Your Business and Family

Although you can invest in many different types of insurance to protect your business from lawsuits and other liabilities, one of the greatest liabilities you simply can’t avoid, especially if you are the sole owner of your business, is your incapacity or death. To make certain that your business—and the income it generates for your family—would continue to run smoothly when something happens to you, you need to Read More

Just Married? 6 Estate Planning Essentials for Newlyweds – Part 1

As we head into the peak of wedding season, if you are a newlywed or are about to tie the knot, add “estate planning” to your do list. And yes, we imagine that at this happiest time of your life, planning for your potential incapacity and eventual death is probably the farthest thing from your mind right now, but getting it handled as part of your wedding planning is the greatest gift you can give your soon-to-be Read More

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 assets are distributed, which may or Read More

Choosing a Trustee For Your Estate Plan

You will have at least one person (if not multiple people) involved in the disposition of your assets in your estate plan. This could be the executor of your Last Will and Testament, Health Care Directive agent, or trustee. The job of a trustee is multifaceted and is not for everyone, but the position is vital for countless estate planners and beneficiaries. Without an effective trustee, your assets might not go to Read More

New Developments Transform the Role Life Insurance Plays in Your Estate and Financial Planning

Within the past year, a combination of new legislation and the recent change of leadership in the White House and Congress stands to dramatically increase the income taxes your loved ones will have to pay on inherited retirement accounts as well as increasing the income taxes you owe on your taxable investments. However, purchasing life insurance may offer you the opportunity to minimize the effect of these Read More

Managing Your Digital Afterlife: A Guide To Facebook’s Legacy Contact

If you use Facebook to share, track, and report on important life events, it can provide an  intimate snapshot of your life, and it can also serve as a key part of your legacy—and one you’ll likely want to protect following your death. With this in mind, as with any other digital asset you own, you should include your Facebook profile as part of your estate plan. While you’ll want to include your Facebook profile Read More

Does Your Estate Plan Protect Your Intellectual Property?

If you own a business, you almost certainly have intellectual property. However, because your intellectual property is intangible, it can be invisible to you and those who aren’t familiar with the nature of intellectual property and its value, so it often gets overlooked, especially when it comes to estate planning. Yet, if you fail to properly document your intellectual property, your estate plan will likely not Read More

Former Zappos CEO Tony Hsieh Dies Without A Will—Part 2

In part one of this series, we discussed how Tony Hsieh became an Internet pioneer, starting two wildly successful companies, LinkExchange and Zappos, the latter of which he sold to Amazon for $1.2 billion. It was as CEO of the online shoe brand Zappos where Hsieh developed his vision for life and business: delivering happiness.  A Double Life Hsieh outlined this mission in the 2010 book, Delivering Happiness: Read More

What is a Heggstad Petition Used For?

For all the usefulness of a living trust (revocable and irrevocable) in the context of estate planning, many planners, unfortunately, fail to transfer the title of their assets to the trust after they create it. Living trusts allow property and assets to be distributed to beneficiaries in an efficient manner (outside of probate court) when the trustor passes away or becomes incapacitated.  What can you do if a Read More

Former Zappos CEO Tony Hsieh Dies Without A Will—Part 1

On November 27th, nine days after being pulled unconscious from a house fire in a beachfront home in New London, Connecticut, Tony Hsieh, the former CEO of the online shoe retailer Zappos, died due to complications of smoke inhalation.  Hsieh, who was single and had no children, was just 46. Although the cause of the fire is still under investigation, law enforcement ruled his death accidental. At the time of Read More