Michael Jackson’s Estate Liable For $200M in Taxes Due to Unfunded Trust

Gabriel Katzner - February 2, 2016 - Estate Planning

Michael Jackson, the “King of Pop,” had always been a controversial superstar. Over the years, he became the father of three children, Prince Michael Jackson II, Paris-Michael Katherine Jackson, and Michael Joseph Jackson, Jr. While Jackson created a revocable living trust to care for his children and other family and friends, he never actually funded […]

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Teaching a Guardian How to Raise Your Children

Gabriel Katzner - - Estate Planning

As parents we know that every child is different. Siblings have different likes and dislikes, hopes and dreams, fears and concerns. It’s sometimes a wonder that they came from the same parents! I remember the day my wife and I took our son Owen home from the hospital. After a short nap he woke up […]

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Decanting: How to Fix a Trust That Isn’t Getting Better With Age

Gabriel Katzner - February 1, 2016 - Estate Planning

While many wines get better with age, the same cannot be said for some irrevocable trusts.  Maybe you’re the beneficiary of trust created by your great grandfather over seventy years ago that no longer makes sense.  Or maybe you created an irrevocable trust over twenty years ago that no longer makes sense.  Is there any […]

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Skyrocketing Probate Fees – Another Reason to Avoid Probate Court

Gabriel Katzner - January 29, 2016 - Estate Planning

As of July 1, 2015, Connecticut probate courts earned the dubious distinction of charging the highest probate fees in the U.S.  Amazingly, the Connecticut legislature voted to completely cut general fund support for the state’s probate courts for the next two fiscal years, thereby creating a $32 million deficit.  In order to cover the shortfall, […]

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What if Treating Your Children Fairly Means Unequal Inheritances?

Gabriel Katzner - January 26, 2016 - Estate Planning

When planning their estate, most parents express the desire to treat their children equally out of a sense of fairness.  However, sometimes being fair or doing what’s right by your children may not mean equal or the same inheritances. The Key Takeaways  Treating children fairly does not always mean equal inheritances. How and when each […]

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Dennis Hopper Saves Heirs with Last Minute Estate Plan Changes

Gabriel Katzner - - Estate Planning

Dennis Hopper, known for his role in Easy Rider, wanted to leave his fortune to his family.  Well, not everyone in his family. Hopper made numerous estate planning changes in the last months of his life. His goal? To make sure his heirs shared his approximately $40 million in wealth and that his fifth, and […]

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Listen Up: These States Will Usher in Changes to Their Death Taxes in 2016

Gabriel Katzner - January 25, 2016 - Estate Planning

Listen Up:  These States Will Usher in Changes to Their Death Taxes in 2016 In 2015, there are still 20 U.S. jurisdictions that collect a death tax at the state level:  Connecticut, Delaware, District of Columbia, Hawaii, Illinois, Iowa, Kentucky, Maine, Maryland, Massachusetts, Minnesota, Nebraska, New Jersey, New York, Oregon, Pennsylvania, Rhode Island, Tennessee, Vermont, […]

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Warning: Don’t Let Creditors Inherit from You

Gabriel Katzner - January 21, 2016 - Estate Planning

(This is part 3 in a 3-part series). Shocking to most people, the retirement account you leave for your spouse can be seized in a divorce, lawsuit, or bankruptcy. 3 Options Available To Surviving Spouses When your surviving spouse inherits your IRA, he or she generally has three options: Cash out the inherited IRA and […]

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5 Reasons to Protect Your Retirement Accounts Now

Gabriel Katzner - January 20, 2016 - Estate Planning

(This is part 2 in a 3-part series). During your lifetime, your retirement account has asset protection, but as soon as you pass that account to a loved one, that protection evaporates. This means one lawsuit and POOF! Your life long, hard earned savings could be gone. Fortunately, there is an answer.  A special trust called […]

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