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Horizon Elder Law & Estate Planning Blog

Friday, October 6, 2017

Talking to Your Family About Your Estate Plan


What estate planning topics should I discuss with my loved ones?

Broaching the topic of estate planning can be difficult.  Most of us are loathe to discuss death or finances, two of the primary concerns of an estate plan.  Even though it can be tough, it is vital that you set aside the time to have an informed conversation with your family about your estate plan.  After all, far more important than finances are your family relationships.  Our Read more . . .


Sunday, October 1, 2017

What To Do When You Suspect A Conservator is Engaging in Foul Play


The elderly are particularly vulnerable to multiple types of abuse, including financial abuse. Many aging Americans are socially isolated, which makes them prime targets for con artists. As despicable as it sounds, sometimes the very people the courts appoint to protect seniors are the ones who exploit them. If your loved one has a court-appointed fiduciary to handle her financial matters, you need to know


Read more . . .


Tuesday, September 19, 2017

What Benefits Are Available to Veterans and Their Families?


Eight percent of the total veteran population of the United States lives in California. 1.8 million American veterans make California their home. When you add in their families, this is a massive number of people who have served their country. If you or a family member is a veteran living in California, you need to know


Read more . . .


Friday, September 15, 2017

The Costs of Living Longer


How can I plan for the expenses I may incur as I age?

With ever increasing medical advancements, people today are living far longer than our ancestors.  Since just the 1970’s, life spans have increased more than a decade.  While living longer is surely a blessing, it can come at high financial costs.  It is believed that by 2022 there will be at least 4.3 million seniors living in poverty or near poverty.
Read more . . .


Monday, September 11, 2017

Tips to Avoid and Manage Crises with Elderly Parents


Aging parents may resist help out of a need to feel capable and independent. It is hard to accept that you need assistance. When seniors will not reach out for or accept offered help when needed, they can end up in a crisis. If you are caring for an aging parent, here


Read more . . .


Wednesday, August 23, 2017

Understanding The Symptoms of Elder Abuse or Neglect


A horrific story hits the news. An aging Californian has been the victim of abuse, either at home or in a nursing home. Your stomach turns. You have elderly loved ones. How can you know if someone is abusing them? You need information to help you in Read more . . .


Friday, August 18, 2017

What is a Domestic Asset Protection Trust?


Americans have used “offshore” or foreign asset protection trusts for decades as a vehicle to shield their wealth from creditors. Courts have invalidated offshore APTs by applying American law to these assets.
Read more . . .


Monday, August 7, 2017

Learning From Philip Seymour Hoffman’s Estate Planning Mistakes


How can I protect my assets after my death?

Philip Seymour Hoffman was a celebrated actor who starred in such famous movies as The Hunger Games and Charlie Wilson’s War.  Hoffman’s talent on the big screen did not, however, equate to skill in estate planning.  Hoffman passed away in 2014 and was survived by his girlfriend and three young children.  He died with only a will drafted by his CPA in place that left his $35 million in assets to his girlfriend, who was to provide for his children.  His lack of an estate plan resulted in the loss of approximately $12 million in taxes.
Read more . . .


Friday, July 21, 2017

When Should You Talk to Your Parents About Their Estate Plan?


Both aging parents and their adult children are often reluctant to talk about the parents’ finances. The parents may feel money is a taboo topic, particularly with one’s children. The adult children do not want to be considered greedy or intrusive. So many people procrastinate until it is too late.

But it can cause significant problems if adult children do not have the financial talk with their parents.
Read more . . .


Monday, July 17, 2017

How Do I Qualify for Medicaid Without Losing All of my Assets?


Most people hope that when they retire, they will have no financial worries. The reality is, too many people are left without sufficient resources to provide for their healthcare needs. Medicaid was put into place to address this reality, providing coverage for certain medical needs to those without sufficient assets.

Medicaid does have certain maximum income and asset restrictions that need to be understood before you apply. If you have too many assets or too high of an income, you may be denied, or you may be forced to sell some of those assets to repay Medicaid or qualify for those benefits.


Read more . . .


Monday, July 10, 2017

Check Your Beneficiary Designations Today


What might happen if I fail to update my beneficiary designations on my life insurance policies, bank accounts, and more?

While most of us put off estate planning, failing to take some basic steps towards preparing for your eventual death could come at a significant cost for your loved ones and your legacy.  One of the most important things you can do is take the time to designate a beneficiary on your insurance policies, bank accounts, and retirement accounts, or update your beneficiary as your life evolves.
Read more . . .


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