» Estate Planning, Wills & Trusts

Advantages of a Last Will and Testament

There is no law that requires you to have a will to transfer your property at death. Creating a will is a personal choice. If you do not want your property to be transferred according to state law upon your death, you will need to leave your own inst… Read More
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When Should You Update Your Estate Planning Documents? The Five Ds

Legal documents are meant to reflect your current life circumstances and wishes, so they should change as your life does. In the estate planning world, we refer to the “5 Ds.” These are significant shifts that can serve as reminders to consider u… Read More
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Medicaid Estate Recovery: Will the State Take my House?

There is a lot of misinformation and confusion surrounding estate recovery and the Maine Medicaid (MaineCare) long-term care benefit. One of the biggest fears we hear from aging Mainers is, “I don’t want the State to take my house.” That only h… Read More
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Family Limited Partnerships and LLCs

What is a Family Limited Partnership? A partnership, generally, is an entity created by agreement of two or more persons for the purpose of holding property or operating a business. The partnership agreement will spell out the respective rights of th… Read More
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Tax Free Gifting

In general, whenever you give cash or property to another person, you are potentially subject to the federal gift tax. If you make “taxable gifts,” you are required to file a federal gift tax return (Form 709) and use some of your lifetime exclus… Read More
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Revocable Living Trusts

A revocable living trust, sometimes called a “living trust” or an “inter vivos” trust, is a trust established during life that the creator of the trust has the power to change or revoke. The trust creator can designate himself or herself as t… Read More
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IRAs and 401(k)s

Tax-deferred retirement savings vehicles such as IRAs and 401(k)s provide great opportunities for sheltering funds and their growth from income taxes for an extended period of time. But income tax cannot be deferred forever. Sooner or later, someone… Read More
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The Forgotten Step in Estate Planning: Beneficiary Designations

Individuals often believe that a last will and testament is sufficient estate planning. However, a complete estate plan includes a last will and testament and planning for incapacity with a financial power of attorney and an advance health care direc… Read More
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Modification of Irrevocable Trusts

A revocable trust can be revoked at any time, usually by the grantor or creator of the trust. An irrevocable trust cannot simply be revoked by the grantor. Historically, irrevocable trusts have been considered etched in stone—unchangeable, immovabl… Read More
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Family Camp

Whether you call it a camp, a cottage, or a cabin, the place where your family comes together is special. There are several techniques for transferring the family camp to the next generation. It is imperative to consider your family’s goals and dyn… Read More
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We highly recommend Jane Skelton and the team at the Maine Elder Law Firm.”
– Carroll E. Harper & Jay Pearl, Managing General Agent & Director of New Business Development, Carroll Harper & Associates, Inc.