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November 2010 Archives

Estate Planning: Deciding Between a Living Trust and a Will

Over the last three posts, we've discussed the benefits of both living trusts and wills when it comes to estate planning. When it comes to picking one or the other, you really need to think about your needs. What are your assets?

Estate Planning: Wills

Unlike trusts, personal wills are subject to probate upon the creator's passing. While probate is often spoken of in a negative sense, there are some benefits to it. Plus, with a comprehensive and detailed will, probate becomes a less frightening proposition - one that costs less money and finishes in a timely fashion.

Estate Planning: Living Trusts

In her article, Price Mueller notes that living trusts are "sometimes touted as an absolute essential." As always, this is more or less true depending on your assets, your goals and how you hope to pass on parts of your estate. Still, there are a great number of reasons to consider the living trust as an essential part of your estate plan.

Estate Planning: Do I Need a Living Trust or a Personal Will?

On Monday, we discussed the importance of addressing estate planning before the year is up. Whether or not you can make the 2010 deadline, you should still make plans to sit down with an estate-planning attorney early in 2011 to look at your assets and opportunities.

2010 is Coming to a Close - Do You Know Where Your Estate Plan is?

November is here. In fact, November is half gone. In a week or so, we'll be looking at Thanksgiving festivities. Less than a month after that, we'll be cleaning the house for Christmas guests. With 2010 quickly approaching its close, it's time to ask yourself about estate planning - whether you have a plan, one underway or nothing at all.

Must-do's for Individuals Considering an Estate Plan, Part Two

Yesterday, we began to discuss a number of essential steps for anyone considering the creation of an estate plan. Today we're going to continue that train of thought, drawing from an excellent article by Steven Merkel, published on SFGate.com.

Must-do's for Individuals Considering an Estate Plan, Part One

On Tuesday, the San Francisco Chronicle ran a great article by Steven Merkel (from Investopedia) highlighting 16 important steps to take when planning your estate. Over the next three posts, we are going to highlight the steps Merkel recommends, discussing as necessary, and hopefully giving you a loose checklist to consider when consulting an estate-planning attorney.

Estate Planning Before Marriage

The number of unmarried couples living together rose by 7.5 million, or 13 percent, over the past year. These numbers, collected by the U.S. Census Bureau, are indicative of a shift in both relationships and social norms. More and more often, couples are choosing to live together before they are married and, in some cases, cohabiting couples will never marry at all.