» estate planning

Fairfax, VA (Law Firm Newswire) January 22, 2016 – Those who have blended families can face difficult estate planning issues. They may wish to leave a portion of their estate to their current spouse and their children, their children from prior marriages, and in some instances, their children from their spouses’ prior marriages. It can be a daunting task to provide for all members of one’s family. It is best not to depend on a spouse and children to work things out because there could be family arguments and possible litigation following one’s death. There are some estate planning vehicles […]


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Fairfax, VA (Law Firm Newswire) January 15, 2016 – The last thing that couples wish to think about is the possibility of the death of a spouse. However, failing to prepare for that eventuality can only make matters worse if it occurs. According to a NerdWallet survey of over 2,000 married adults, one in three couples is without life insurance. Among those who have life insurance, 43 percent state that they would not be financially ready if their spouse died. In order to offer some semblance of security for one’s family, there are some steps that couples can take to […]


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Virginia Beach, VA (Law Firm Newswire) December 21, 2015 – There are a number of options when preparing for long-term care, which will be needed by up to 70 percent of individuals age 65 or older, according to the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS). The HHS predicts that 20 percent will require long-term care for over five years. Long-term care can include 24-hour supervision or help with personal care and other responsibilities. Whatever kind of long-term care required, it is advisable to plan for one’s health and well-being long before retirement. Long-term care is usually defined as the […]


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Santa Clara, CA (Law Firm Newswire) December 18, 2015 – The Pacific Autism Center for Education (PACE) today announced that Michael Gilfix and Mark Gilfix of Gilfix & La Poll, longtime experts in the field of special needs planning, will present an informative and timely seminar on January 25, 2016 at 6pm at the PACE School. The program is open to the community at large. Topics covered will include: – Update on the ABLE Act: a tax favored bank account to supplement Special Needs Trust planning – Five myths or misunderstandings about Special Needs Trusts and asset protection – The […]


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Virginia Beach, VA (Law Firm Newswire) December 11, 2015 – When handling one’s estate planning, it is important to prepare the relevant documents and ensure that they can be accessed by trusted family members prior to one’s death. Such documents can include wills, health care directives, and lists containing passwords to online accounts. However, there are other less common items that some family members may need when their loved one dies. One such item is military discharge papers. John J. Scroggin, who manages a tax business and estate planning firm in Atlanta, knew that his father wished to be buried […]


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Harrisburg, PA (Law Firm Newswire) December 7, 2015 – The Harrisburg Pennsylvania law firm, Hazen Elder Law is now Hazen Law Group; a law firm that focuses on long-term care planning, guardianships, estate planning, asset protection, special needs planning and public benefits. The firm was founded by Marielle F. Hazen, and is considered to be one of the best law firms in the nation by U.S. News and World Report. The new name represents the firm’s growing portfolio of services that fall outside of “elder law” such as special needs planning and trusts and veterans’ benefits. Among the services they […]


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San Francisco, CA (Law Firm Newswire) October 14, 2015 – The Social Security disability fund is running out of money and faces a nearly 20 percent cut to benefits at the end of 2016, according to a Social Security trustees report released on July 22. Nearly 60 million people currently receive Social Security benefits. The Social Security Disability Insurance and Supplemental Security Income (SSI) programs are vital sources of income for special needs children. The budget cuts would immediately affect around 11 million people receiving disability benefits as of 2014. Other beneficiaries could see reduced or interrupted payments in the […]


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New York, NY (Law Firm Newswire) October 14, 2015 – As part of their commitment to serving the local community, Littman Krooks LLP, Arc of Westchester, Huntington Learning Center, Miracle League of Westchester, New Frontiers in Learning and Pegasus Therapeutic Riding will host a workshop on special needs trusts. Building financial security is an important consideration for the family members and friends of individuals with special needs. A special needs trust is an estate planning tool that protects funds intended to enrich the life of a loved one with special needs, while preserving eligibility for public benefits. This workshop will […]


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San Francisco, CA (Law Firm Newswire) September 28, 2015 – In San Diego, California, attorney Michael Gilfix presented a program on Preventing Elder Financial Abuse on July 16 at a national Symposium. It was the annual conference of Wealth Counsel, a leading estate planning organization that is nationally known and respected. His session was titled “Our Population is Aging: Is Your Practice Prepared?” It addressed two crucial areas. The first part of the program was about marketing to the Boomer population. In the second part, Gilfix spoke about how to give the Boomer population what they want — independence and […]


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San Francisco, CA (Law Firm Newswire) September 14, 2015 – Attorneys Michael Gilfix and Mark R. Gilfix of Gilfix & La Poll Associates have co-authored an article about estate planning and taxation in the September 2015 issue of the prestigious Trusts & Estates magazine. In the feature titled “A New Paradigm: Truly Multigenerational Planning,” they present a novel and innovative approach for estate planning with the aim to “help families achieve a diversity of shared goals.” The article suggests a new paradigm in which multiple generations of a family actively participate in planning. The essentials of estate planning — including […]


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Virginia Beach, VA (Law Firm Newswire) September 8, 2015 – Annuities are regular payments that insurance companies provide in return for contributions, typically to a life insurance policy. For some, annuities represent a valuable estate planning tool, providing a way for retired people to ensure a regular income even if they live a long life. “Annuities can be helpful in estate planning, but it is important to understand the differences between the types of annuities, as well as their limitations,” said Andrew H. Hook, a Virginia estate planning attorney with Hook Law Center, with offices in Virginia Beach and northern […]


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Irvington, NY (Law Firm Newswire) June 23, 2015 – As part of its goal to serve as a resource to families, law firm Barger & Gaines is announcing the expansion of its Irvington office. The firm is now the largest in the tri-state area with a dedicated full-time team focused entirely on special education law and advocacy, special needs planning, estate planning, and guardianship. The firm recently added noted attorney Sheryl Frishman, Esq., immediately enhancing the firm’s ability to deliver comprehensive services to the families of students and adults with special needs.  “We know how important a child’s education is […]


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San Francisco, CA (Law Firm Newswire) May 8, 2015 – Attorneys from Gilfix and La Poll will appear on NBC’s “Asian Pacific America with Robert Handa” this weekend. Michael Gilfix and Mark Gilfix will discuss how best to provide for those with special needs in the Bay Area’s Asian community. “We are happy to have the opportunity to reach out to local families and talk about their needs and the options available to them,” said Mark Gilfix. “Our message is, “Proper planning is vital, and help is available,” and we’re excited to be able to share it on this program.” […]


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Virginia Beach, VA (Law Firm Newswire) February 12, 2015 – According to Andrew H. Hook, a Virginia estate planning attorney with Hook Law Center, having estate planning documents in place can help prevent problems from occurring as a person ages and after they pass away. “The goal of estate planning is to make sure that your wishes are followed if you become incapacitated or after your death,” said Hook. “A will, trust, power of attorney and advance health care directive are all important to have in place.” Hook said that a will is perhaps the most essential estate planning document. […]


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Fairfax, VA (Law Firm Newswire) January 30, 2015 – Conservation easements played a major role in the estate planning of Mellon family parcels for sale. Several key pieces of real estate were among the marquee items in the estate of the late Listerine heiress Rachel “Bunny” Mellon, who died in March 2014 at the age of 103. One of them, a 100-acre estate in Nantucket, Massachusetts, sold for $21.5 million on December 18. As in the case of the Virginian’s other properties for sale, estate-planning-relevant conservation restrictions were attached to the island property. The Bunny Mellon property made headlines in […]


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Palo Alto, CA (Law Firm Newswire) January 30, 2015 – According to estate planning professionals, an increasing number of high-net-worth individuals are limiting how much money they leave to their children. The most famous example of this might be Warren Buffet, who has said publicly that he does not want to leave his children so much money that they do not need to do anything with their lives. Similarly, Bill Gates has said that he plans to donate almost all of his multi-billion dollar fortune to charity, leaving about $10 million to each of his three children. Estate planning attorney […]


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Palo Alto, CA (Law Firm Newswire) January 2, 2015 – A recent article in the Wall Street Journal describes a transformation in estate planning for individuals or couples who have significant assets, but who are not subject to the federal estate tax. With a federal estate tax exemption set at more than $5 million per individual — a figure set to rise — tax reporter Laura Saunders says that capital gains taxes are now the driving concern in estate planning for many affluent Americans. “Saunders is absolutely right to point out that, particularly for Californians, capital gains taxes can pose […]


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Fairfax, VA (Law Firm Newswire) November 18, 2014 – Upon her passing, Ruth T. Bedford left $40 million to her beloved alma mater, doubling its endowment. Unexpected gifts often prove the most gratifying, but sometimes the magnitude of an unforeseen act of charity can leave the recipient stunned. And stunned is how the administrators of the all-girls Foxcroft School near Middleburg, Virginia, felt when they learned that Standard Oil heiress Ruth T. Bedford bequeathed their institution $40 million when she died in June. Bedford, who was 99 when she passed away, served with the Red Cross during the London Blitz, […]


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White Plains, NY (Law Firm Newswire) November 14, 2014 – The National Association of Estate Planners & Councils (NAEPC) has elected Bernard A. Krooks of Littman Krooks LLP, JD, CPA, LLM, CELA, AEP® to the Estate Planning Hall of Fame. He has been honored with the designation of Accredited Estate Planner® (Distinguished). Krooks will be one of only seven professionals to receive this prestigious award in 2014. The designation of Estate Planning Hall of Fame and Accredited Estate Planner (Distinguished) recognizes those individuals who have made outstanding lifetime achievements and contributions to the practice of estate planning. This award is […]


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Virginia Beach, VA (Law Firm Newswire) November 6, 2014 – Surviving spouses named as a beneficiary of their deceased spouse’s IRA should carefully consider their options for handling the account. The primary options are to assume the IRA, inherit the IRA, take a lump-sum distribution or disclaim the account. “How an IRA is handled after a spouse’s death can have major tax and financial consequences for the spouse beneficiary,” said Andrew Hook, a Virginia estate planning attorney with Hook Law Center. Assuming an IRA means transferring the assets into an IRA in one’s own name. For tax purposes, the IRA […]


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