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September 2017 Archives

Health care planning can help to avoid a financial disaster

Although people throughout the country and in Massachusetts view Medicare as a trusted program, it does not pay for all medical expenses that one may encounter after age 65. Services that were covered under employer-sponsored plans, such as vision, hearing and dental care are not covered. Long-term care coverage is also not covered, and Medicare has substantial deductibles and co-pays. That is why health care planning for one's retirement years is vital.

A revocable trust cannot serve its purpose until it is funded

Whether in Massachusetts or elsewhere, a basic fact to remember is that trusts must be funded before they can do anything. However, an unfunded trust is not void. For example, a revocable trust that is unfunded will remain valid but inoperative until it is funded. This sometimes does not happen until the settlor dies and his/her pour over provision in the will kicks in and sends specified assets to the trust. That is an ironic result because one of the purposes of creating the revocable trust is to avoid probate.

Different options provided by a revocable vs. irrevocable trust

A trust is an often-underutilized estate planning tool that allows for clear and specific stipulations regarding the handling of a Massachusetts individual's estate and asset distribution, while often minimizing taxes and administrative expenses. With terms like living trust, revocable and irrevocable trust and more, though, the vast array of options and legal phrases may feel overwhelming. An estate planning attorney can offer more detailed information, but here are some quick summaries that may help clarify the basics.