Planning

Estate Planning for Marriages With A Non-Citizen Spouse

While traveling abroad as a student, John met Grace. Grace was a citizen of Spain. Love at first sight, they began a whirlwind courtship and got married. They returned to the United States and eventually settled down as residents of New Jersey. Intending to reside permanently in this country, she nevertheless maintained her Spanish citizenship. […]

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Powers of Attorney: Practical Tips for Executing, Using and Revoking

By Thomas D. Begley, III, Esq. Co-Authored by Brittany A. Verga, Esq. Although most people initially think that a Will is the cornerstone of estate planning, it is often asserted that the most important document is a power of attorney. A power of attorney is a document in which one individual vests authority in another […]

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May You Rest In Peace ….Elsewhere

Mark Babyatsky died on August 25, 2014. He was 55 years old. He left behind a wife, Elizabeth, and their two minor sons. He was also survived by a daughter, Amanda, who was the offspring from a prior marriage. Shortly after he was buried, Elizabeth sought to disinter Mark’s remains and transfer them to another […]

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Court Case Highlights Need For Special Needs Trust Funding

Last month, the Arkansas Supreme Court reversed the decision of a local Circuit Court which denied the request of a disabled party, James S. Corn, to establish a Special-Needs Trust on his behalf. James S. Corn, who is in his 50s, became disabled, suffering from memory loss. He receives both SSI and Medicaid. His partner […]

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Let’s Go Crazy – Estate Planning a la Prince

In 1984, Prince released what was arguably his penultimate album – the soundtrack to his semiautobiographical film, Purple Rain.  This classic filled compilation was ignited by its initial track, “Let’s Go Crazy”.  A phenomenal song with a phenomenal title.  Yet it appears it is regrettably the theme for his estate plan – or apparently lack […]

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Challenges to the Caregiver Exemption

By Brittany A. Verga, Esq. The child caregiver exemption is an important exception to the five year lookback rule in Medicaid planning. For many years, it has allowed children to retain the homes of parents for whom they have provided long-term care. However, the ability to qualify for this exemption is being severely limited. The […]

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Pre-Nuptial Agreements: Not Just For Divorces Anymore

Pre-nuptial agreements have been around for many years.  Historically, they have rightly been viewed as a creation to provide assurance to individuals about to enter marriage that their assets would be protected in a manner they deemed fit in the event of a divorce.  To some extent, there has often been attention provided to the […]

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It’s Not Just A Deed – The Possible Pitfalls Of Transferring The Home To The Children

As parents age and become acutely aware of the potential specter of long term care costs, there is a strong desire to preserve the assets which they have accumulated over the years. The most significant of these assets for many of them is the family home. More often than not, many parents believe that the […]

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Life Insurance Beneficiaries Must Be Designated, Not Assumed

In July 2012, Michael G. Fox got married, and looked forward to many happy years with his new wife, Evanisa.  Unfortunately, Michael died tragically in a work-related car accident just four months later.  Evanisa assumed that she was entitled to the death benefit from his life insurance policy. In attempting to file her claim, Evanisa […]

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Planning for the Smooth Transition of a Decedent’s Home

In the early years of Saturday Night Live, there was a skit called “The Thing That Wouldn’t Leave.”  It dealt with John Belushi playing a dinner guest that refused to leave his hosts’ home.  A very funny sketch, but one that is often re-enacted without the humor in real life by children who reside with […]

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