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Denver Elder Law Blog

Business succession tips for women business owners

The growth in the nation’s economy since the last recession is unquestionable. It has spawned a number of small businesses, particularly the number of new enterprises owned by women. According to a number of media reports, more than nine million small businesses are owned by women, which accounts for about a third of all active businesses across the country.

And like their male counterparts, women should plan for their personal futures with just as much detail as their businesses. With that, estate planning should be a part of their business planning. This post will focus on a few things that should be part of a business owner’s estate plan.   

The importance of naming primary and secondary beneficiaries

One of the greatest benefits of estate planning for you and your loved ones is not only documenting your wishes, but also ensuring that your goals are carried out without additional heartache and financial burden. Effective estate planning allows you to not only provide you peace of mind, but also to those you select to receive your property without unnecessary delays.

Selecting specific beneficiaries is as important as the smooth transfer of those assets.

Is congressional inaction a reason to delay estate planning?

Estate planning is considered an important step that is best taken sooner rather than later. However, when tax policies are in flux because of a new White House administration, important decisions are put on hold for all the right and all the wrong reasons.

Current Congress inaction over tax reform is forcing some well-to-do investors to consider delaying their estate plans.

The changes in Medicare you should be aware of

Thousands of Americans miss Medicare enrollment deadlines, assuming that they are already covered under insurance purchased in Affordable Care Act’s marketplaces. The consequences of that assumption run the risk of a lifetime of penalties.

In recognition of this common oversight, Medicare has temporarily changed its rules. They are offering a reprieve of penalties for late enrollees. Those 65 year of age and older who have a marketplace plan or had one lost or cancelled or if they are disabled but stayed with a marketplace plan may also qualify for the penalty waiver or reduction.

Protection of an asset most valuable for a family

U.S. Coast Guard veteran Albert Frost died on his 100th birthday, leaving behind a variety of assets and possessions. One in particular not only had sentimental value to Frost’s beneficiaries, but could also attract a pretty penny for collectors of such memorabilia.

Frost was a 30-year veteran of the United States Coast Guard, starting his career in December of 1941, following the Japanese attack on Pearl Harbor. It would serve as the first of many career highlights.

Estate planning in a digital age

With instances of hacking garnering banner headlines, internet security has become a prominent issue. Complex passwords, impenetrable firewalls and other weapons are growing in their sophistication to combat the growing and sinister efforts to access confidential information.

Hard copy has become passé. Paper trails are shorter, if not nonexistent. Banks, utility companies and others entice their customers to go paperless by providing the option of electronic statements and auto payments.

The mid-year tune-up your estate plan may need

With 2017 reaching its halftime, the temptation is to focus on fun in the sun. While rest and relaxation is necessary, taking a moment to go through a mid-year estate planning checklist to ensure those documents are current.

With a new presidential administration pursuing changes in the law and rolling back regulations, you want to make sure that your tax plan is still efficient. You want confidence that assets will transfer to your beneficiaries at the right time and in the right manner.

Estate planning options for the childless

For most people, estate planning serves as a way to leave valuable assets behind to their children and other loved ones. Directing their property to named beneficiaries provides clear direction, if not peace of mind for them and their family.

However, what do individuals or couples do when they built up valuable estates over many years, only to have no children, close family members or other heirs as possible beneficiaries? Challenges exist when they have seemingly no one to leave their assets to or name as executors to their wills, healthcare proxies or powers of attorney.

Know the warning signs of elder financial abuse

Discovering that an elderly loved one is being financially abused sometimes does not occur until it is too late. The abuser has already done significant damage, stealing possessions and cleaning out bank accounts.

Findings by a Securities Industry and Financial Markets Association (SIFMA) study revealed:

Can pets be part of an estate plan?

Pets have evolved from loyal companions to “furry children.” More and more owners consider them as actual members of their family. Over the past few years, divorce laws incorporated “pet custody” into marital dissolution agreements.

Estate planning is also providing unique legal status to family pets to ensure that they receive the care they deserve should anything happen to their owners.

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