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Author Archives: Simmons & Schiavo, LLP

5 Things That Need Special Handling in Estate Planning

Some types of assets require special handling or attention in estate planning. Estate planning goes beyond simply providing instructions for straight forward items. Understanding the complexities of some assets and taking certain steps may be required to accomplish your estate planning goals. Here are a few examples of things that need special handling in estate […]

Estate Planning Questions for 2020

Happy New Year! As you welcome in the new year, it’s time to ask yourself some important estate planning questions for 2020. It’s necessary to review your plan every year, but these questions may change the way you approach your overall plan.  Estate Planning Questions for 2020 Taxes Do any recent legal or tax changes […]

Year-End Estate Planning Tasks

The holidays and end-of-year are a time for reflection… and planning. Estate planning is one of many things that you may want to review as you close out the year. Be sure to include these in your year-end estate planning tasks. Changes to Assets & Liabilities If your assets or liabilities changed over this last […]

Estate Planning During the Holidays

With so many activities during the holidays, estate planning may be the last thing on your mind. However, it’s actually a great time to think about your estate planning goals and to communicate them with your family members, especially if it’s the one time of year that you’re all together in-person. Here are a few […]

What Happens When a Beneficiary of a Family Trust Gets Divorced

Family trusts are often designed to benefit your immediate family or other relatives in the event of your death.  One scenario that we often don’t think about is what happens when a beneficiary of a family trust gets divorced. Below are a few possibilities, based on recent case law in Massachusetts.  Direct Assignment to Ex-Spouses […]

Tips on Choosing Guardians for Your Children

Choosing guardians is one of the most difficult decisions for parents. No parents want to think about not being there for their children and no one can ever truly take your place. However, failing to make a selection can leave it up to the courts, which couldn’t possibly be any better a decision than what […]

Characteristics of a Good Guardian for Your Children

There are many different ways to look at guardianship. In our previous blog post, we mentioned personal values, geography, adaptability, and desire as important factors. Looking beyond that, there are many personal characteristics that make a difference as well. Some of these are difficult to even consider, but necessary nonetheless. Here are a few characteristics […]

Using a 1031 Exchange to Defer Capital Gains Taxes

1031 exchanges offer tax savings when selling and buying investment properties. It encourages reinvestment in the real estate market by deferring capital gains taxes on the sale of one property when the funds are put directly towards the purchase of another property. If you are both selling and buying an investment property, consider using a […]

5 Ways to Reduce or Eliminate Capital Gains Taxes on Investment Properties

Investment properties are a great way to build wealth and accumulate assets for retirement. To maximize your return on investment, it is important to carefully plan out the sale of a property and reduce potential taxes, such as capital gains taxes. Below are a few ways to reduce or eliminate capital gains taxes on investment […]

Use a Lawyer for Medicaid Planning

Many seniors and their families don’t use a lawyer to plan for long-term care or Medicaid, often because they’re afraid of the cost. However, an attorney can help you save money in the long run and make sure you’re getting the best care for your loved one. Instead of proceeding based on what you’ve heard […]