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In the News – “Buzz Aldrin Fights Family For Control of His Space Legacy”

From a recent post in The Wall Street Journal, Gretchen Morgenson shared an interesting story about an elder law and powers of attorney dispute. Buzz Aldrin, famous for his walk on the moon, is now 88 and facing a legal battle against his two youngest children who say that he is in mental decline and no longer is able to manage his company, Buzz Aldrin Enterprises, or his nonprofit, ShareSpace Foundation. With the help of his lawyer, Robert Tourtelot, Aldrin has discovered years of unfair dealings by his children and secretary who have slowly taken over his businesses and their trust funds within his estate plan.
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In the News – “A Widow’s Advice to Her Younger Self”

The death of a spouse is a very trying time, especially if it was unexpected and they handled much of your household’s finances and planning. Forbes just shared an interesting perspective on wills and estate plans by following Bridget Wilson, whose husband had passed away from cancer.
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In the News – "Guardianship Abuse Keeps 74 Year-Old Man From His 100 Year-Old Mother"

Recently, the Times Square Chronicles shared a horrifying story about one of the worst ways that guardianship can go wrong. Errol Rappaport, 74, has been kept from seeing his 100-year-old mother after disputes with his siblings to which a legal guardian was appointed to his mother by the court.
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Free Powers of Attorney for Young Adults Ages 18 to 22

As we approach the graduation season, I am reminded that a large number of young adults will soon be leaving for college, junior college, the military, or just leaving home. It is important to note that these young adults are adults and their parents no longer have any right to get information about their doctor visits or insurance information, even if they are paying the bill. Welcome to HIPAA, the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act of 1996 that provides data privacy and security provisions for safeguarding medical information.
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When is Making a Gift Advantageous?

Gifts may be made as part of an estate plan for a number of reasons. Some people gift property during lifetime to remove it from their estate, both to avoid probate and to reduce potential federal and/or state estate tax. Others gift property to transfer the income tax on income generated by the property to the donee, and still others transfer property in order to protect it from potential nursing home costs or other medical expenses. Prior to making gifts, all of the consequences of the gift should be carefully weighed. Otherwise, generosity now may actually cost beneficiaries many dollars in tax which would not otherwise be required to be paid. Additionally, the effect of the gift on the client's financial security should be considered.
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Real Estate Tax Exemptions - What you should know?

Every year when we help people sell their homes, as a part of that process, we review their property taxes. We find that many of our clients do not have the correct tax exemptions for which they are entitled. If you qualify and apply for a tax exemption, your real estate taxes will decrease. The three most common exemptions for real estate are the residential exemption, senior exemption, and senior freeze.
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Wills, Powers of Attorney, an Estate Plan - What are They?

What are the basic parts of an Estate Plan? We suggest these 4 documents: 1.) A Last Will and Testament. A will outlines who will be in charge of your estate, how the estate is distributed, and will waive the requirement of the executor posting a surety bond. We suggest everyone over the age of 18 have a will. In a will you can give your executor the authority to access your digital assets, eg. your Facebook account, email, online financial information, and other digital assets. This is becoming very important in the “digital age”.
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