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Often times, individuals do not become permanent residents until much later in life. This often occurs when adult United States citizen children who are over twenty-one filing a petition on behalf of their much older non-citizen parent. As a result, many of these parents are not fluent in the English language and find it very ...

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Have You Had Your Annual Estate Plan Checkup?
An annual estate plan checkup is critical to the health of your estate plan. Because various exclusion, exemption and deduction amounts are adjusted for inflation, they can change from year to year, impacting your plan. 2019 vs. 2018 Amounts Here are a few key figures for 2018 and 2019: Lifetime Gift and Estate Tax Exemption ...

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For spouses of U.S. citizens who have been granted conditional permanent residence status for a period of two years, you will need to file form I-751 to remove the conditional status during the 90 days before your second anniversary as a conditional resident. Unfortunately, like most other USCIS applications, there is a considerable backlog and ...

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If You’re Driven to Transfer a Vehicle’s Ownership to a Trust, Know the Risks
A revocable trust — often referred to as a “living trust” — can help ensure smooth management of your assets during life and avoid probate at death. And you may know that the trust isn’t effective unless you “fund” it — that is, transfer ownership of your assets to the trust. But what about assets ...

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Estate Planning Lite: College-Aged Children Need a Basic Estate Plan
If your son or daughter currently is home from college on winter break, now is a good time to sit down and discuss a few estate planning documents he or she should have at this stage of life. Let’s take a closer look at four such documents: Health care power of attorney. With a health ...

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“The whole world is a court case…and we’re all…defendants” ~ Emma Chase Heidi Clark inherited an IRA from her mother.  She then ran into financial difficulties and filed for bankruptcy protection claiming that the IRA was protected under applicable bankruptcy laws as “retirement account.”  The bankruptcy trustee challenged this characterization – and won, which was ...

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A Prenup or a DAPT: Which is the Better Choice?
If you or one of your adult children is getting married, you may be concerned about protecting your family’s assets in the event of a divorce. A prenuptial agreement can be an effective tool for overriding marital property rights and keeping assets in the family. But these agreements have disadvantages. For many families, a better ...

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DIY LOUISIANA WILL EXECUTION BACKFIRES (Notary Stamp Completely Invalidates Will)
“The views expressed by Me are in no way endorsed by CBS any of its allied companies or in fact Me.” ~Craig Ferguson Ms. Sandra Dale lived in East Feliciana Parish, Louisiana.  She loved East Feliciana Parish so much that she named her first born, Felicia Dale.  Sandra later had two more children, namely Christopher Dale and ...

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How Incomplete Nongrantor Trusts Can Help Avoid State Income Taxes
With the federal gift and estate tax exemption at $11.40 million for 2019, people whose estates are below the exemption amount are shifting their focus to income tax reduction. High-income taxpayers — particularly those who live in high-income-tax states — may want to consider incomplete nongrantor trusts, which make it possible to eliminate state taxes on ...

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Family Businesses Need Succession Plans, Too
Those who run family-owned businesses often underestimate the need for a succession plan. After all, they say, we’re a family business — there will always be a family member here to keep the company going and no one will stand in the way. Not necessarily. In one all-too-common scenario, two of the owner’s children inherit ...

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Devote Some Time to Internal Leadership Development
Many factors go into the success of a company. You’ve got to offer high-quality products or services, provide outstanding customer service, and manage your inventory or supply chain. But there’s at least one other success factor that many business owners often overlook: internal leadership training and development. Even if all your executive and management positions ...

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Consider an Intrafamily Loan to Cover Estate Taxes
Sometimes estates that are large enough for estate taxes to be a concern are asset rich but cash poor, without the liquidity needed to pay those taxes. An intrafamily loan is one option. While a life insurance policy can be used to cover taxes and other estate expenses, a benefit of using an intrafamily loan ...

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Unleash the Power of a Nonspringing Power of Attorney
Estate planning typically focuses on what happens to your children and your assets when you die. But it’s equally important to have a plan for making critical financial and medical decisions if you’re unable to make those decisions yourself. A crucial component of this plan is the power of attorney (POA) • specifically, a nonspringing ...

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Estimates vs. Actuals: Was Your 2018 Budget Reasonable?
As the year winds down, business owners can be thankful for the gift of perspective (among other things, we hope). Assuming you created a budget for the calendar year, you should now be able to accurately assess that budget by comparing its estimates to actual results. Your objective is to determine whether your budget was ...

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Should You Name a Trust as IRA Beneficiary?
An IRA is a popular vehicle to save for retirement, and it can also be a powerful estate planning tool. Some people designate a trust as beneficiary of their IRAs, but is that a good idea? The answer: possibly. IRA Benefits The benefit of an IRA is that your contributions can grow and compound on ...

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