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April 2018 Archives

3 questions you should ask your parents about estate planning

It is never easy to watch your parents get older. Facing the fact that your parents are aging may feel uncomfortable and intimidating. However, it is important to face this issue head-on and have some conversations with your parents about their finances and estate planning.

Planning for possible incapacitation eases burden

No one in New York likes to think they won't ever be able to take care of themselves. Whether due to a serious accident, illness or old age, becoming incapacitated can happen at any time, however. There are steps that should be taken now to reduce the burden of their care on loved ones should the unthinkable happen.

Reasons to revise an estate plan

Estate plans should be reviewed periodically. If the plan has been created to reduce or avoid estate tax, it may need to be revised since the exemption has gone up substantially. The document may also need revision if an individual has moved to New York from another state.

Important estate planning documents to consider

Some people in New York might put off creating an estate plan because they do not want to think about their mortality, but it is important to make a plan so that loved ones receive assets as intended. If a person dies without an estate plan, the court decides how his or her assets will be distributed, and this decision may not reflect the deceased's intentions.

Why might you need a power of attorney or health care proxy?

It can be difficult to accept that sometimes cognitive ability declines with age. However, this is a reality you may need to face, especially if you have received a diagnosis of an age-related cognitive impairment, and you are concerned about preserving your estate. You and other New York residents will rightfully want to keep unscrupulous people from getting ahold of your funds, both to keep you comfortable in your golden years and for the benefit of your heirs.

Family conflict can be a big estate planning problem

Conflict between family members might be the biggest problem in estate planning for many people in New York. In a survey of estate planning professionals conducted by TD Wealth, 44 percent of respondents said fights between family members were the main challenge they faced. Problems with specific documents, such as wills and powers of attorney, lagged far behind at 17 and 16 percent respectively.