Trusts

5 Concerns for First-Time Executors

Posted on: June 6th, 2017
A person serving as executor for the first time must manage the time demands of the probate process while allowing leeway for their own learning curve. Our probate attorneys produced a few overviews of the estate administration process to help facilitate a productive start....

Dealing With Creditors in NC Probate

Posted on: May 5th, 2017
Personal representatives and executors follow a state-mandated timeline for creditor notifications. When it comes to managing debts, including through approval or rejection of creditor claims, the executor’s duties become more complicated....

New Legal Library on Trusts, Estates, and Tax Law

Posted on: March 23rd, 2017
TrustCounsel's new Legal Library is now a permanent free online resource with guides to help direct executor’s discussions with attorneys, as well as to alert legal and financial practitioners of important probate and trust law matters....

The Taboo Subject of Estate Planning and Firearms

Posted on: January 25th, 2017
A guest contributor on Southern Gun Law Group, Dennis Gayness is a Certified Firearms Appraiser with the Triangle Shooting Academy. In his guest post he delves into events throughout history that have influenced rare and collectible firearms passed down through generations....

What Executors Should Know About Digital Assets in North Carolina Probate

Posted on: September 22nd, 2016
In late June 2016, the North Carolina governor signed Senate Bill 805, Revised Uniform Fiduciary Access to Digital Assets Act, into law. The Act provides that trustees, executors, agents under powers of attorney, and other fiduciary parties in North Carolina may be granted authorities over electronic records and communications of another user. ...

Asset Protection Risks From Prior Marriages

Posted on: August 25th, 2016
Remarriage after divorce or the death of a spouse poses unique issues that individuals entering a first marriage generally do not have to navigate....

Probate of Real Estate in North Carolina

Posted on: June 24th, 2016
Real property poses unique set of considerations in the context of estate or trust administration. To understand more about how a personal representative oversees the management and distribution of real property during estate and/or trust administration, take a closer look at some variables that affect property distribution....

Remarriages and Inheritances in North Carolina

Posted on: May 9th, 2016
Individuals in North Carolina who have married more than once might have estate planning issues they are not aware of. Whether one has remarried following a spouse’s death or divorce, one should take time to review existing estate planning documents....

Dave Ramsey Might be Misinformed About Living Trusts

Posted on: May 7th, 2016
Financial guru Dave Ramsey shares advice regarding managing debt and finances with millions of people. However, one of his books makes a broad statement about living trusts that is not entirely true....

What To Do if You Inherit an Out-of-State Home

Posted on: April 27th, 2016
If a property owner has not proactively and wisely planned for multiple properties in their estate plan, or if they have no estate plan in place, properties could be at risk of creditor claims, which is one of the many challenges heirs face....

Who Needs an Estate Plan?

Posted on: April 25th, 2016
Our estate planning attorneys in Chapel Hill look at a few demographics that some might consider are not in need of a plan and discuss why these segments of our society would in fact benefit from an estate plan....

Tax Considerations in Structuring Inheritances

Posted on: November 18th, 2015
When dividing assets in an estate plan, the testator might be inclined to evenly split assets for heirs. However, if not planned for properly, federal and state tax requirements nevertheless could result in an uneven split of assets upon distribution...

3 Questions to Ask if You Own Real Property With Joint Title in NC

Posted on: September 23rd, 2015
There are several ways to hold joint title to real property in North Carolina. The method of titling can also leave the property at risk to certain claims while both owners are alive, a factor which might be considered when choosing how to hold title. ...

Changes to North Carolina Trust Code Affect Estate Planning

Posted on: September 22nd, 2015
In August 2015, the Act to Amend the Law Governing Estate Planning and Fiduciaries (Senate Bill 336) was enacted to modify North Carolina’s Uniform Trust Code. The Act sets forth new provisions regarding trustee duties and liability, trust decanting, guardianship, and living probate....

North Carolina Special Needs Planning Update: Pending Autism Bill

Posted on: September 21st, 2015
North Carolina Senate Bill 676, which has passed the Senate and is currently in the House Rules Committee, sets forth changes to healthcare coverage for autistic patients. ...

Including Jewelry in North Carolina Estate Plans

Posted on: July 13th, 2015
June is a popular choice of month for weddings. This past June was the first one that same-sex marriages were nationally legalized. How should couples include engagement rings and wedding bands in their estate plans?...

Avoid a Will Dispute

Posted on: May 26th, 2015
An individual’s last will and testament might clearly reflect one’s wishes, but it does not prevent an estate dispute. Successfully contesting a will in North Carolina (and similarly in other states) requires evidence of certain factors. ...

Opportunities for 529 College Savings Plans

Posted on: May 24th, 2015
529 College Savings Plans consistently offer long-term tax-deferred growth for future students. As a savings tool, 529 plans come with a few restrictions. For one, contributions must be made with after-tax dollars. ...

A Will’s Limits in North Carolina Probate

Posted on: May 8th, 2015
A will cannot achieve every goal of the testator. No matter how finely crafted provisions are made and assets are addressed in a will, additional tools can help the testator preserve their wishes. An improperly drafted will, one that is not filed, or dying without a will could prompt courts to distribute the estate according...

Last-Minute Estate Planning in North Carolina

Posted on: April 9th, 2015
Forbes cited a survey in 2014 that revealed 51% of Americans aged 55 to 64 do not have an estate plan. Sometimes a health crisis prompts an individual to create a plan for bequeathing their assets. ...

Vulnerability for Domestic Asset Protection Trusts

Posted on: March 2nd, 2015
A recent court case involving a Domestic Asset Protection Trust (DAPT) revealed a possible threat to the protections provided by these powerful asset preservation tools. DAPTsgenerally are used when enhanced creditor protections are desired. Some jurisdictions also provide tax benefits for DAPTs....

When To Omit Beneficiaries From a Trust

Posted on: February 18th, 2015
Depending on the goals of the individual, trusts might name family, friends, or charities as beneficiaries. However, certain types of trusts may be structured with no human or organizational beneficiaries at all....

State Residency and Domicile in Estate Planning

Posted on: January 29th, 2015
Tax, probate, and asset protection laws in each state vary. Individuals might want to establish residency in a jurisdiction with attractive legislation for estate planning purposes, and they do not necessarily have to relocate in order to take advantage of the laws. ...

How Asset Protection is Different in 2015

Posted on: January 19th, 2015
Wealth preservation is an ongoing process. How, when, and where assets are transferred or acquired affect protections. As the New Year begins, individuals can take a step back and review legislation changes that affect our year ahead and those to come:...

3 Things to Know About Perpetual Trusts

Posted on: January 16th, 2015
Perpetual trusts, also known asdynasty trusts, protect assets for the benefit of future generations. Some perpetual trusts are common trusts that allow multiple generations to benefit at the same time. ...

Timeshares in Estate Planning

Posted on: December 19th, 2014
Many of the clients our estate planning attorneys in Chapel Hill serve own property in multiple states, and some of the properties are timeshares. Timeshares are generally considered real property, with a deed as evidence of ownership. ...

Estate Planning Mistake: Forgetting to Fund

Posted on: December 19th, 2014
Many estate plans include a living trust, a tool that can be amended at any time during the trust creator’s life and becomes irrevocable upon their death. Even the most carefully planned and detailed estate plans could be at least partially ineffective if the trust creator fails to fund the trust....

3 Signs You Should Update Your Retirement Plan

Posted on: December 18th, 2014
Reports continue to show Americans are not saving enough for retirement. Some retirement account owners may miss out on opportunities that could help grow their assets, even if they are not contributing suggested amounts. ...

Successor Trustee Responsibilities

Posted on: December 17th, 2014
When a trustee passes away or becomes incapacitated, a successor trustee must step forward. In addition to the trustee’s duties, a successor trustee is responsible for presenting an affidavit or certificate of trust that provides proof of their legal power over the trust. ...

Top 5 States for Dynasty Trusts

Posted on: November 4th, 2014
Dynasty trusts offer asset protection and estate and generation-tax skipping tax avoidance over many generations. Three years ago attorney Steve Oshins started a ranking system of dynasty trusts. ...

Protect Parents’ Assets

Posted on: September 8th, 2014
As parents age, the risk of health problems grows. TheSandwich Generation—those caring for both their children and their parents, may experience the stresses and expenses of elder care, and then more issues later with probate of a deceased parent’s estate if no advance plans are made....

Increasing Trust Income Distributions

Posted on: August 19th, 2014
Many trusts provide for lifetime income, but no principal, to the first generation of beneficiaries. In these days of low interest rates, income payments have suffered. However, income distributions from trusts do not have to be permanently affected by low interest rates. ...

When Beneficiary Designations are Void

Posted on: July 23rd, 2014
As a general rule, beneficiary designations supersede instructions for transferring assets that may appear in a Will. This is one of the reasons why regular reviews of one’s estate plan are critical. ...

Chatham County, NC Estate Administration Changes

Posted on: July 15th, 2014
The Chatham County Clerk of Superior Court recently released updates to estate administration rules. We provide a link to the official changes to Estate Administration – General Rules Practices 2014. ...

Repeal of the Permanent Federal Estate Tax?

Posted on: July 12th, 2014
The federal estate tax was made permanent as part of the American Taxpayer Relief Act. (A few months after ATRA passed, Obama’s 2013 Budget Proposal moved to revert the “permanent” estate tax to 2009 terms.)...

Tax Requirements for North Carolina Trusts

Posted on: July 10th, 2014
In many states, an important factor in determining whether the trust is taxable is where the beneficiaries, settlor, and trustees are domiciled. A tax attorney may help determine how trust assets might need to be structured respective to a state’s tax laws to achieve the most favorable tax treatment....

Incentive Trusts

Posted on: June 24th, 2014
Trusts may be customized to suit the grantor’s wishes, which may include their determination of what’s best for their beneficiaries....

Tennessee is #3 for Domestic Asset Protection Trusts in 2014

Posted on: May 27th, 2014
A year ago Tennessee tied for the fourth spot in Steve Oshins’ AnnualDomestic Asset Protection Trust State Rankings. Last summer Oshinsupdated the rankings after pending legislation failed to pass, and Tennessee jumped a spot—tied for third with Ohio....

4 Tax Considerations for Parents of Special Needs Children

Posted on: May 21st, 2014
Special needs children may require the expenditure of significant sums for day-to-day healthcare, home modifications, and education programs. Fortunately, however, these expenses typically offer some tax advantages....

Estate Planning for New Parents in North Carolina

Posted on: May 20th, 2014
According to the North Carolina State Center for Health Statistics, over 17,800 babies were born in the three major counties of the Triangle during 2012. How should parents update their estate plans for new babies?...

What to Leave in Your Will: Culture & Values

Posted on: March 27th, 2014
Estate plans can designate real property, personal items, and financial assets to named individuals, and can also impart how the estate plan creator wants to be remembered. People care about their personal values. ...

North Carolina Elder Care: 2014 Nursing Home Rankings

Posted on: March 11th, 2014
The Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services released ratings of North Carolina nursing homes, showing 29% of the Triangle’s nursing homes received 5 out of 5 stars. ...

Permitted Distributions for Special Needs Trusts

Posted on: February 13th, 2014
If you are starting to explore options for Special Needs Trusts in North Carolina, one of the first differences you discover are “third party” trusts and “self-settled” trusts. ...

3 Things When You Inherit an IRA

Posted on: January 29th, 2014
Last year North Carolina passed legislation that provides added creditor protection for Individual Retirement Accounts (IRAs). ...

Step-Parents and Step-Children in Estate Planning

Posted on: January 24th, 2014
Estate planning for blended families is critical to ensure that assets are distributed as intended. A spouse’s family members are not included under North Carolina intestacy laws. Without a will, individuals who die in the Tar Heel State may not effectively leave assets to non-blood relatives....

Estate Planning for Posthumous Conceptions

Posted on: December 30th, 2013
A child may be born after a parent dies, which is a possibility couples can address in their estate plan. However, what are the inheritance rights of posthumously conceived children in North Carolina? ...

NC 529 College Savings Deduction Repealed 2014

Posted on: November 25th, 2013
The North Carolina state tax deduction for contributions made to 529 College Savings Plans will be repealed effective January 1, 2014. Before this date, taxpayers are able to deduct $2,500 contributions annually. ($5,000 for married taxpayers filing jointly.)...

3 Concerns for Minors Inheriting IRAs

Posted on: November 7th, 2013
Beneficiary designations for Individual Retirement Accounts (IRAs) allow account holders to designate a trust, charity, or any individual, regardless of their age, as a beneficiary. ...

Elective Share Changes in North Carolina

Posted on: November 5th, 2013
Provisions in a Will in favor of a spouse are revoked in divorce in North Carolina, however beneficiary designations are not revoked. Beneficiary designations for life insurance policies, as well as retirement accounts must be updated in order to prevent an ex-spouse—or a soon-to-be ex-spouse—from being legally entitled to these assets. ...

Top 5 States for Dynasty Trusts

Posted on: October 17th, 2013
Dynasty trusts in North Carolina offer creditor and asset protection for future generations while at the same time legally bypassing certain taxes. ...

3 Common Mistakes in Special Needs Trusts

Posted on: October 16th, 2013
As part of Special Needs Law Month, our attorneys in Chapel Hill reviewed past posts that outline special needs law information in North Carolina. We have also created a list of common mistakes that families make when establishing special needs trusts for the benefit of a disabled loved one. ...

Swiss Accounts: New Tax Terms for Offshore Accounts

Posted on: October 12th, 2013
Offshore trusts offer many benefits, which our attorneys explain in this foreign trust protection post. Offshore trusts or accounts are not exempt from domestic taxes, however some taxpayers have illegally used offshore accounts as a means of tax evasion....

Special Needs Law Month

Posted on: October 7th, 2013
Special Needs Law addresses multiple legal, financial, and medical concerns for families who care for a disabled loved one. October is Special Needs Law Month, a time when resources for special needs issues are promoted and explained. ...

BVI Accounts Under Scrutiny in 2014

Posted on: September 23rd, 2013
A new law will reveal more details about United States taxpayers who maintain accounts in the British Virgin Islands. Starting in 2014, the BVI will need to provide account information about US taxpayers in order to comply with the new legislation....

3 Tax Benefits of Education Trusts

Posted on: August 30th, 2013
rustCounsel’s Gregory Herman-Giddens will present ‘Education Trusts and 529 Plans: Estate Planning Strategies for College Savings’ On September 5th in a 60-minute teleconference through the National Constitution Center....

North Carolina Pet Trusts

Posted on: August 29th, 2013
Not every state has laws addressing pet trusts. Fortunately, North Carolina pet trust laws allow residents to establish clear plans for the care of their companion animals....

Trust Modifications if you Move Out-of-State

Posted on: August 27th, 2013
If you are moving to North Carolina and already established a living trust in another state, or if you established a living trust in North Carolina and are now moving out-of-state, are you compromising the terms of your trust with your relocation?...

Can I Use a Power of Attorney to Modify a Trust?

Posted on: August 18th, 2013
Although not an everyday question, at times those who are attorneys-in-fact—the authorized agents appointed in an individual’s power of attorney—inquire about their abilities to amend a trust....

Finding Elder Care in North Carolina

Posted on: August 16th, 2013
Choosing an assisted living center, nursing home, or home healthcare provider in North Carolina should not be a quick decision. Recent reports show that 1 out of 3 nursing homes nationally have reports of abuse. ...

Are You Legally Required to Care for Elderly Parents?

Posted on: August 7th, 2013
Although federal laws governing a child’s responsibility to care for elderly parents do not currently exist, this matter is addressed on the state level. Over twenty states, including North Carolina, have filial responsibility laws....

Updated: Top States for Domestic Asset Protection Trusts 2013

Posted on: August 2nd, 2013
Our asset protection lawyers in Chapel Hill shared Steve Oshins’ Annual Domestic Asset Protection Trust State Rankings earlier this year, and now there is a mid-year update:...

Potential Changes for Special Needs Trusts

Posted on: July 29th, 2013
Special needs trusts are excellent tools that help protect an individual’s assets while preserving his or her eligibility for government benefits, such as Medicaid....

Trust Trend: Make Heirs Wait

Posted on: July 15th, 2013
How long will it take you to receive your inheritance in North Carolina? If our state follows a national trend, the time may be growing longer. ...

Estate Planning for Same-Sex Couples in North Carolina

Posted on: July 11th, 2013
The landmark federal ruling of the United States vs. Windsor in late June 2013 has deemed the Defense of Marriage Act unconstitutional. ...

3 Steps to a Better Retirement Plan

Posted on: June 26th, 2013
What is your ideal retirement? Everyone takes their own strategy toward retirement, but generally individuals try to create a retirement plan that will provide enough money to care for themselves while affording them the means to do the things they enjoy. ...

NC Estate Changes for Surviving Spouses Effective October 2013

Posted on: June 24th, 2013
In June 2013, North Carolina Governor Pat McCrory signed Senate Bill 279, a bill amending matters concerning estates, trusts, powers of attorney, and guardianship. ...

Estate Planning Tips for Second Homes

Posted on: June 19th, 2013
North Carolina coastal properties from Corolla down to Sunset Beach are attractive investment homes that can be rented out during the summer season, used as a winter escape, and eventually a primary retirement home. ...

Tax Concerns When Modifying Trusts

Posted on: June 17th, 2013
In May 2013, the Internal Revenue Service issued a Private Letter Ruling addressing tax concerns resulting from a trust modification agreement. PLRs are issued when a taxpayer directly requests guidance from the IRS on a specific matter....

When Spouses Disagree During Estate Planning

Posted on: June 4th, 2013
Choosing beneficiaries and deciding which assets each will receive may become a challenge if your spouse does not agree with your choices. ...

3 Reasons Why You Need IRA Beneficiary Trusts

Posted on: May 27th, 2013
Naming a trust as an IRA beneficiary has become a popular estate planning tool in recent years.* There are many advantages to using an IRA Trust: ...

Creditors Can Still Collect From Foreign Trusts

Posted on: May 13th, 2013
Foreign trusts, or offshore trusts, are popular asset protection tools as they are notorious for providing superior protection from creditors. However, foreign trusts are not creditor-proof. ...

Top States for Domestic Asset Protection Trusts

Posted on: May 7th, 2013
Steve Oshin’s 2013 Annual Domestic Asset Protection Trust State Rankings were released and show the highest scoring state for DAPTs is Nevada....

Ways to Protect an Inheritance from Creditors

Posted on: April 30th, 2013
Bequeathing assets involves more than naming beneficiaries. Creating a proper estate plan offers individuals and families the ability to protect their assets for loved ones after they’re gone. Unexpected claims could drain accounts and threaten properties that were intended to be passed on to beneficiaries. ...

Obama’s 2013 Budget Proposal to Push Estate Tax Back to 2009 Terms

Posted on: April 16th, 2013
Although Obama’s American Taxpayer Relief Act was said to make permanent changes, lawmakers had also advised that it was just the first step in a series of changes. ...

5 Tax Scams of 2013

Posted on: April 11th, 2013
Every year many innocent people fall victim to tax scams. Taxpayers may be taken advantage of by scammers, dishonest tax preparers, or may have their identity stolen by other means. ...

Ways to Protect Your Finances: Financial Literacy Month

Posted on: April 9th, 2013
April is Autism Awareness Month, Parkinson’s Awareness Month, and it is also Financial Literacy Month. These three campaigns may at first appear unrelated to each other, but they are interconnected....

3 Estate Planning Baby Steps

Posted on: March 11th, 2013
When a baby is on the way, it is a perfect time for expectant parents to complete or update their estate plan to ensure their child’s future care. ...

Tax Changes and Limitations on Dynasty Trusts

Posted on: December 19th, 2012
Dynasty trusts, which help families legally avoid estate taxes and preserve assets for heirs of future generations, are the target of new legislation that could significantly limit their value. ...

It’s Not Too Late to Use Your $5 Million Exemption!

Posted on: December 15th, 2012
Estate Planning attorneys all across the country are frantically working to help their clients utilize the $5.12 million gift and estate tax exemption before it disappears at year end. ...

Now is the Time to Consider Tax Issues as 2013 Draws Near

Posted on: November 21st, 2012
A recent press briefing with Press Secretary Jay Carney touched on tax issues that will affect every American in 2013. Right now, Americans are ill-prepared for the approaching drop off the “fiscal cliff.” As tax cuts are about to expire in the New Year, how will individuals be affected?...

Don’t Fall Off the Fiscal Cliff Without an Estate Plan

Posted on: October 21st, 2012
Estate Planning Awareness Week comes during the final quarter of the year, just before the New Year shift known as the “fiscal cliff.” What is the fiscal cliff?...

3 Tips for National Estate Planning Awareness Week

Posted on: October 16th, 2012
October 15-21, 2012 is National Estate Planning Awareness Week. The country-wide campaign focuses on educating individuals about the importance of planning their estates, and the risks they face if they have not yet created an estate plan. ...

Dynasty Trusts Ranked – NC Doesn’t Make the Cut

Posted on: October 13th, 2012
Nevada attorney Steve Oshins, who produces an annual ranking of Domestic Asset Protection Trusts, has now done the same for Dynasty Trusts. ...

Drafting an IRA Trust – What You Need to Know

Posted on: January 27th, 2012
I have previously blogged about IRA Trusts, which are one of my favorite estate planning tools. This afternoon I presented a 90 minute national continuing legal education teleconference and webinar on the topic. I...

How to Draft IRA Trusts – Teleconference

Posted on: December 22nd, 2011
Attorneys interested in learning more about IRA Trusts may wish to sign up for my 90 minute teleconference, How to Draft IRA Trusts, to be held on January 27, 2011 at 2:00 p.m. Eastern. The program may also be of interest to CPAs, financial planners and trust officers....

AK Bankruptcy Court Avoids Transfer to AK DAPT

Posted on: October 19th, 2011
In the May 26, 2011 Alaska Bankruptcy Court decision of In re Mortensen, the court avoided a transfer of real property of the debtor to an Alaska Domestic Asset Protection Trust (DAPT). The judge held that under Section 548(3) of the Bankruptcy Code, any transfer to a DAPT for less than full and adequate consideration is,...

Nevada Asset Protection Trust Laws Improved

Posted on: October 3rd, 2011
Nevada’s new Domestic Asset Protection Trust (DAPT) laws became effective October 1, 2011. One new feature is the ability to move a DAPT that was established in another state to Nevada without having to start the statute of limitations period over....

New NC Trusts and Estates Laws

Posted on: August 12th, 2011
In the 2011-2012 Session, the North Carolina General Assembly passed several laws affecting estate planning, trusts and probate: S.L. 2011-5 and S.L. 330- The reference to the Internal Revenue Code in G.S. 105-228.90(b)(1b) is changed from May 1, 2010 to January 1, 2011. ...

Summary of Obama’s 2013 Budget Proposal for Estate and Gift Taxes

Posted on: June 29th, 2011
A June 22, 2011article on Trusts and Estates magazine’s website contains a nice summary of President Obama’s budget proposal measures effecting estate planning. ...

IRS Issues Interim Guidance on Fiduciary Fee Treatment re 2% Floor

Posted on: May 15th, 2011
The IRS has issued interim guidance on the treatment under Code Section 67 of investment advisory costs and other expenses subject to the 2-percent floor under Section 67(a). Notice 2011-37....

Why You Might Not Want a Simple Estate Plan

Posted on: April 25th, 2011
Many people come in to see me with the notion that all that they need and want is a "simple" estate plan. Generally that means no living trust, and a will with no trust provisions for surviving family members. ...

Life Insurance to Pay a Future Bill

Posted on: February 10th, 2011
Second-to-die insurance is traditionally purchased by affluent married couples.How it works: The insurance proceeds are paid out upon the death of the second spouse when the funds are often needed to pay taxes....

Forgoing an ILIT- Estate Planning’s Costliest Mistake

Posted on: September 11th, 2010
Most people know that the proceeds of a life insurance policy are generally free of income taxes. What many don’t realize, however, is that the same proceeds are included in one’s estate for estate tax purposes....

NC Law on Intrepretation of Estate Tax Clauses for 2010 Decedents

Posted on: September 1st, 2010
This year, of course, there is no federal estate tax. However, many Wills and Trusts drafted in the past contain formula clauses based on the existence of the federal estate and/or generation-skipping transfer tax....

NC General Assembly Considering Bill to Address Issue of Outdated Wills and Trusts of Those Dying in 2010

Posted on: May 20th, 2010
With no estate tax in 2010, the prospects of reinstatement diminishing daily, and the ever more probable $1 million exemption in 2011, my staff has been working hard to notify our existing clients that they should come to have their wills or trusts updated....

Special Needs Trusts: Allowable Expenses

Posted on: March 12th, 2010
Special Needs Trusts (SNTs), also sometimes referred to as Supplemental Needs Trusts, are used to provide supplemental benefits to disabled or elderly...

NFA (Gun) Trusts Provide Many Advantages

Posted on: November 5th, 2009
This posting is courtesy of my colleague David Goldman in Jacksonville, Florida, who has created a special trust for owning weapons regulated by the National Firearms Act (NFA)....

Put Your Parents in Your Will?

Posted on: August 25th, 2009
This article discusses when it might be appropriate to include your parents or grandparents in your will or living trust – generally when you are providing support for them. ...

Judicial Creation of Special Needs Trusts Clarified

Posted on: July 15th, 2009
Governor Bev Perdue recently signed into law Session Law 2009-267, which: modifies North Carolina General Statutes Section 36C-2-203(a)(9) to state the proceedings may be brought before the Clerk of Superior Court to create a trust....

Is your IRA heir-tight? Probably not…

Posted on: May 22nd, 2009
The recent Kiplinger.com article How to leave an IRA that’s heir-tight contains lots of good information and advice about IRA distribution planning, but there’s a glaring omission – no discussion of the use of trusts to protect IRAs for the benefit of one’s heirs. ...

Beware of “Pure” or “Constitutional” Trusts

Posted on: April 30th, 2009
Here’s a great article from Santa Barbara attorney Mark Cornwall – Beware the Pros at Cons. Occasionally clients ask me about such arrangements, and, of course, and I inform them that’s it’s a bunch of baloney. Remember – if it sounds to good to be true, it most likely is!...

ILIT Trustees – Examine Your Policies

Posted on: October 25th, 2008
Life insurance trusts (ILITs) are a popular estate planning technique used to shelter life insurance proceeds from estate taxes, creditors and mismanagement by beneficiaries. ...

More on Special Needs Trusts

Posted on: October 9th, 2008
​I recently posted a link to an article on Special Needs Trusts – here’s another one from the Wall Street Journal, which quotes several well known lawyers, including Barry Nelson in Miami, who has a special needs child himself. ...

Avoid Probate of Equity Refunds from Continuing Care Communities

Posted on: December 16th, 2007
The Problem: Continuing care retirement communities have been growing in popularity with seniors for years....

Nevada Offers Estate Planning Advantages

Posted on: May 22nd, 2007
North Carolina is not known for its attractive estate planning and asset protection laws, but NC residents can avail themselves of certain out-of-state planning strategies that can provide significant estate tax savings and creditor protection....

Living Trusts Article in USA Today quotes NC Attorney General

Posted on: February 15th, 2007
The February 9, 2007 issue of USA Today contained an article on Living Trusts. I found the article to provide a good overview of living trusts and their advantages and disadvantages. However, a few things deserve comment:...

Living Trust Scammers Booted Out of NC

Posted on: October 13th, 2006
Good news in this recent article in the News and Observer: Andrea Weigl, Staff Writer : A Wake Superior Court judge has ordered two California companies to stop selling estate planning products to North Carolina consumers...