I am gay … why do I need estate planning?

Thanks to the Supreme Court ruling on the Defense of Marriage Act, same-sex married couples living in marriage equality states will now be treated exactly like all other married couples and enjoy the same estate planning benefits as heterosexual marriages. For instance, the unlimited marital deduction allows one spouse to transfer all assets to the.. read more →

I’m single. Why do I need an estate plan?

This is a little bit of a trick question because your circumstances as a single person are important to know. How old are you? Do you have children? Do you have no assets or substantial assets? What is the status of your health? The answers to these questions are the ones that a married couple.. read more →

I have a special needs child. How will that affect my estate plan?

If a child with special needs is dependent on you for their care, what happens to that child when you die? Special needs kids often required different approaches to education, extra medical care, or extra assistance with the tasks of everyday living. Those needs won’t go away when you, their caregiver, passes on. That’s why.. read more →

Estate Planning and Vacation Homes

With its mild climate and warm winter sun, Arizona is a mecca for snowbirds who want to get away from the freezing temperatures, snow, cold rain and storms during the winter months. Many of these people end up purchasing a second or vacation home right here in the Valley of the Sun. As for Phoenix.. read more →

Estate Planning is Not Just for the Wealthy

More often than not, people hear the words “estate planning” and immediately presume that if they don’t have a lot of money they don’t have to think about it. You might call that the albatross-style of estate planning. It is true that for most people, estate taxes and even probate are not a major consideration… read more →

Should my Health Savings Account (HSA) be part of my Trust?

If you have an HSA or MSA (medical savings account) there is a possibility that funds might be in the account when you die. How do you plan for the distributions of those funds? In terms of estate planning these accounts are like a hybrid. While you are alive, the account functions like an ordinary.. read more →

What happens to your body if you leave no instructions?

The State of Arizona has several laws that helps determine what happens to your body when you die. Arizona law states that the surviving spouse may make final decisions about your body and funeral services. If your spouse has passed away before you or you are divorced, then the right is granted to family members.. read more →

Top 5 Estate Planning Mistakes to Avoid

Passing on your estate and assets to your heirs is serious business, and there’s very little room for error. For instance, what happens if your executor or trustee passes away before you do and you didn’t update your estate plan to reflect that? What happens if you remarry and your ex-husband is still named in.. read more →

Identify Your Assets

No one likes to contemplate their own mortality, which is why so many people fail to plan how their assets will be distributed when they pass on. However, assessing your assets and goals is critical if you don’t want your heirs to end up in probate court waiting for your assets to be decided on.. read more →

Ethical Wills

When you get right down to it, estate planning is all about preserving family values and traditions and promoting family harmony. So ask yourself these questions: If you were gone, would your family know how much you cared for them? Would they know about what was important in your life? Would they feel a continued.. read more →