Trusts & Estates Blog Posts

  • The Refunding Bond and Release

    February 22, 2021

    If you are beneficiary of an Estate, at some point you will be asked to sign a Refunding Bond and Release prior to receiving your bequest from an Estate. The logical question that will arise is what exactly you are being asked to sign. The purpose of this blog is discuss generally what a Refunding ...

  • Do Not Forget the Importance of Gift Provisions in a Power of Attorney

    September 11, 2020

    Gift provisions in a power of attorney can limit both agents and guardians, and restrict their ability to make gifts if a need arises. For this reason, powers of attorney should be carefully drafted to include appropriate gifting authority. A recent New Jersey Appellate Division case underscores the importance of including gift authority in a ...

  • Don’t Forget New Jersey Taxation of IRAs, 401(k)s and 403(b)s

    June 4, 2020

    The federal tax treatment of IRAs, ROTH IRAs, 401(k)s, and 403(b)s has been the subject of countless books, articles, seminars, and commentary. But, there is precious little regarding the New Jersey state income taxation of these accounts, which is often vastly different. Understanding New Jersey taxation rules is important, not only for distributions made to ...

  • 2020 Required Minimum Distributions from Retirement Accounts Have Been Waived

    April 29, 2020

    The Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security Act (CARES Act) contains significant changes to the 2020 required minimum distribution rules applicable to IRAs, 401(k)s, 403(b)s, and other similar Qualified Retirement Plans (collectively “QRPs”). The CARES Act waives required minimum distributions from IRAs and QRPs for calendar year 2020. This change can result in income tax savings ...

  • The Executor Won’t Distribute an Estate – What Can I Do?

    April 24, 2020

    A common problem in many estates is the executor’s failure to promptly settle an estate or make distributions to the beneficiaries. Delays in settling an estate can have many causes, including inattention by an executor, failure to take action where required, and mismanagement. In some cases, the delays are a sign of more serious problems, ...

  • Trust Protection for Gifts to Children and Grandchildren

    April 14, 2020

    Although there is near universal acceptance of the importance of gifting, the manner in which gifts are made can have a major impact for your beneficiaries. This is particularly true if the recipient is under 21 years of age, and it can be an acute issue if the recipient is a minor under the age ...

  • Is Now a Good Time to Make a Gift?

    April 10, 2020

    The recent decline in asset values may make gifting a more attractive estate planning technique for many individuals, particularly if you are considering gifts of stock or other non-cash assets. Gifting of assets to a trust for your children and grandchildren can be an important part of an estate plan, and one that should not ...

  • Unintended Consequences of a Do-It-Yourself Estate Plan

    February 10, 2020

    A do-it-yourself estate plan can lead to a number of unintended consequences as demonstrated by a Florida Supreme Court case, Aldrich v. Basile. In this case, Ms. Ann Aldrich wrote her own Will on a pre-printed legal form. Ms. Aldrich specifically listed each item of her property in her Will, including the account numbers for ...

  • What is a Holographic Will?

    August 13, 2019

    When a loved one passes, questions may arise as to who possesses the Decedent’s Last Will and Testament. If a formal document exists that was validly executed and was drafted by an attorney, chances are that the document is a valid Last Will and Testament unless a challenge is levied against it. What may become ...

  • Protective Arrangements: Guardianships and Conservatorships

    December 15, 2011

    It is an issue that most of us will be confronted with at some point in the future; how best to care for an aging loved one. People commonly think a Power of Attorney is the only method by which to manage another person’s affairs who may no longer be competent to do. There are ...

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