Happy April 1st- Don’t Be An Estate Planning Fool

Posted by on Mar 30, 2012 in asset protection, estate planning, Probate |

A guy walks into a bar with a new boost of confidence. He just found out that his 80-year-old father would be passing away in a few months leaving him a princely inheritance. He looks around the room and locks eyes with a stunning blue-eyed blonde. He knows he doesn’t stand a chance. However, he musters up some courage, walks right up to her, and says, “I may not look like much now, but soon my father will pass away and I will become a millionaire. Can I take you to dinner tonight?” Impressed, the woman agrees. Two weeks later, she becomes his stepmother.

Clearly, women are much better at estate planning than men!

Happy April Fools’ Day!

On a more sobering note, estate planning is no joke. Death is an equal opportunity taker. It does not discriminate based on sex, age, race, or wealth. One day we will all die. However, when that day will come we don’t know. However, we are all armed with the foresight to plan ahead and obviate disastrous consequences by getting our estate plans set in place. This way, we can be sure our family is well protected and taken care of after we join the ranks of the dearly departed.

The law firm of Wild Felice & Partners, P.A. is dedicated in providing valued knowledge and trusted experience of a large law firm but with a client focused approach and protective instinct only a small firm can offer. With expertise and compassion, we focus on the dynamic relationship between our clients and their families.

Early estate planning can save family members from overwhelming stress and emotional ordeal. It can also save loved ones hundreds of thousands of dollars. Why subject them to heavy and unnecessary burdens when they will be consumed with mourning and coping with the reality of your loss? Invest in their future by calling our South Florida estate planning firm today.

For more information on successful Florida estate planning and probate techniques, please contact the South Florida law firm of Wild Felice & Partners, P.A. at 954-944-2855 or via email at [email protected] to schedule your free consultation.

It’s a Wild world.  Are you protected?

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Steve Jobs Smiles From the Grave With the Successful Launch of The New ipad- But What Else Is He Smiling About?

Posted by on Mar 26, 2012 in asset protection, estate planning, Probate, Real Estate, tax, Trusts, Wills |

With the brand new ipad’s high-resolution top retina display and improved graphics hardware, no wonder sales are astronomically rising. Everyone just has to have the new ipad. Steve Jobs is probably beaming from the grave.

There is something else Jobs is probably smiling at- his estate plan. The Apple co-founder was not only a brilliant innovator and businessman but he was brilliant in employing estate-planning attorneys to guide him in how best to protect his estimated $7 billion fortune.  He took advantage of techniques and strategies to ensure his family would be well provided for in the event of his death. We all know Jobs was a very private man. That’s why he chose to establish trusts such as living trusts, charitable trusts, and marital trusts to preserve his assets, protect his family, and minimize estate taxes. Unlike wills, a trust is the ideal vehicle in ensuring the privacy of one’s assets. Wills must pass through probate court, which opens the estate, and become public record. However, a trust avoids probate only for assets put into the trust.

The key to correctly using a trust is to fund it with assets. In 2009, both he and his wife transferred three real estate properties into two different trusts.  Jobs was also the largest single shareholder of Disney and it’s purported that he received millions of dollars in dividends since 2006. He most likely made the wise decision to fund the stocks into a living trust as well.

If he had not engaged in proper estate planning, Jobs would have subjected his loved ones to the burden of paying more than $2 billion in estate tax! He played it smart and got his estate plan in place. You can do the same in South Florida.

To know one’s family is well protected is definitely something worth smiling about from the other side.

For more information on successful Florida estate planning and probate techniques, please contact the South Florida law firm of Wild Felice & Partners, P.A. at 954-944-2855 or via email at [email protected] to schedule your free consultation.

It’s a Wild world.  Are you protected?


 

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Estate Planning Lessons from Kim Kardashian

Posted by on Mar 23, 2012 in asset protection, estate planning, Probate, Real Estate, tax, Trusts, Wills |

Kim Kardashian just can’t get out of the spotlight these days. She recently got flour bombed on the red carpet at her fragrance launch, which came as a shock to all onlookers. It probably had something to do with an angry PETA activist. Another bomb Kardashian took not too long ago concerned her very short marriage to basketball player Kris Humphries that lasted only 72 days. To avoid a third bomb, she should consider estate planning if she has not already done so.

Even short marriages necessitate updating wills and other estate planning documents.

When a major event in life happens, such as a marriage or birth of a child, then a will should be updated to reflect the intentions of the decedent in how assets should be distributed. For example, if you do not want to give any assets to your new spouse or a new child, then the will should be updated to explicitly state this.

Kardashian’s divorce is yet another major life event making it crucial to update estate planning documents. People usually do not want their ex-spouse to inherit anything. Even if Kim married Kris for publicity, she might marry again and decide Kris should get nothing. Taking the time to update her will would save an immense amount of confusion and litigation if she were to die. Ideally, a will should be updated before a divorce is finalized. Why you ask? Consider this. If a spouse passes away during divorce many states will treat that person as still married and allow the ex-spouse-to-be, to inherit a portion of the estate even if the spouse is not mentioned in the will.

When your life changes, it’s important to keep your estate plan up to date to reflect these important changes or you might just get doused in a powder of probate mess.

For more information on successful Florida estate planning and probate techniques, please contact the South Florida law firm of Wild Felice & Partners, P.A. at 954-944-2855 or via email at [email protected] to schedule your free consultation.

It’s a Wild world.  Are you protected?

 

 

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Mirror Mirror On The Wall, What’s the Fairest Asset Protection Of Them All?

Posted by on Mar 19, 2012 in asset protection, estate planning, Wills |

So, everyone’s familiar with Kristen Stewart’s new popular movie Snow White and the Huntsman. Like the bloodthirsty queen in her hunt for eternal power, proper estate planning documents can provide you with the best asset protection so you can have power and control from the grave or… glass coffin . Like the queen who seeks Snow White’s heart in order to remain the fairest of them all, there are four key documents that lie at the heart of estate planning.

1. Last Will and Testament– this legal document sets forth how and to whom your assets will be distributed. It sets forth who the appointed personal representative of your estate is, and if you have minor children, who will be their guardians. Without a properly executed Will, your assets may pass through Florida’s laws of intestacy.

2. Durable Power of Attorney– this critical document allows you to nominate a person who will have power to make all non-medical decisions for you in the event you become incapacitated. For example, they can pay your bills, manage your bank accounts, and run your business.

3. Designation of Health Care Surrogate– this document allows you to designate someone to make medical decisions for you in the event you become incapacitated. If you do not designate someone, the court might appoint someone to make the decisions for you. The courts’ choice might be against your wishes and extremely costly.

4. Living Will– This relates to “end of life” decisions. In the event you are in an “end stage condition” or a permanent vegetative state, you can include instructions that let your loved ones and caregivers know whether or not you wish to be kept artificially alive by machines.

Create your fairytale estate plan today by including all these critical documents. It’s a good feeling to know that with a solid estate plan in place you will have your family members well protected. Then, when it is your time to look into the magic mirror of death, you can be sure that you are the fairest of them all.

For more information on successful Florida estate planning and probate techniques, please contact the South Florida law firm of Wild Felice & Partners, P.A. at 954-944-2855 or via email at [email protected] to schedule your free consultation.

It’s a Wild world.  Are you protected?

 

 

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St. Patrick’s Day Is All About Painting Your Estate Plan Green

Posted by on Mar 16, 2012 in asset protection, corporate formation, estate planning, Probate, Real Estate, tax, Trusts, Wills |

South Florida may not have a very large Irish population, but we’re all Irish when it comes to St. Patrick’s Day. On Saturday, most of Floridians will be painting the town green with the Irish spirit in all of us. Why not ponder a little something while spending all of this week’s paycheck downing infamous green beers or pints of dark Guinness? Is there a way you could save more of your hard earned money?

Well, you’ve found your four-leaf clover. You can paint your estate plan green and save some of those green Benjamins you’ve worked so hard for.

Did you know that the average American works about 80,000 hours in a lifetime? However, national statistics reveal that 80% of Americans die without a will. Less than half of all Florida residents have an estate plan in place. Such a result is a nice pot for Uncle Leprechaun to dip into and hoard your treasures.

Do you know that establishing a Revocable Living Trust avoids probate, thus saving you tens of thousands of dollars while providing your family with complete asset protection?

Do you know that proceeds from a South Florida life insurance policy may carry a hefty estate tax? Establishing an Irrevocable Life Insurance Trust will transfer life insurance benefits into a trust and save your family hundreds of thousands of dollars.

Do you know that about 50 million lawsuits are filed each year? If you own your own business, then choosing the right business entity can protect you from creditor claims. A Limited Liability Company will shield your personal assets from debts and liabilities. A Limited Liability Partnership will protect your personal assets from the mistakes of your partners. The Family Limited Partnership is an ideal legal entity for the family business venture. The main benefit is that the partnership itself pays no taxes. Rather, individual partners report all property or assets in direct proportion to their respective FLP interests on personal tax returns.

This weekend, contemplate step dancing your way into a more solid and secure estate plan. There are many options available that our highly skilled and knowledgeable attorneys can apprise you of.  But don’t delay. Actions speak louder than thoughts.

 

For more information on successful Florida estate planning and probate techniques, please contact the South Florida law firm of Wild Felice & Partners, P.A. at 954-944-2855 or via email at [email protected] to schedule your free consultation.

It’s a Wild world.  Are you protected?

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