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December 2013 Archives

Is it always wise to avoid the Massachusetts probate process?

One main goal of the estate planning process is to avoid probate. However, for an unmarried individual or someone wanting to leave an asset to a non-spouse, avoiding the Massachusetts probate process could end up being more costly. The tax advantages that a surviving spouse receives upon the death of a spouse do not exist for any other beneficiary.

The necessity for health care planning illustrated by new numbers

For the first time, the federal government has collected information regarding individuals who receive some level of paid long-term care. The numbers do not include aging relatives cared for by family members. The figures corroborate that the need for long-term health care planning is clear.

The holidays and health care planning in Massachusetts

Now is the time of year when Massachusetts families that may not get to be together much during the rest of the year are together. This may not seem like an opportune time to discuss health care planning, but there never really is an optimal time to broach the subject. No one wants to think about becoming incapacitated -- especially around the holidays. However, making preparations might give everyone peace of mind.

A Massachusetts irrevocable trust may be decanted

Sometimes, the terms of a Massachusetts irrevocable trust no longer adequately serve its beneficiaries, or the trust itself was not properly drafted initially. If this is the case, it may be possible to decant the current irrevocable trust under certain circumstances. The option to decant such a trust can be crucial since these trusts normally may not be changed or cancelled.