Archive for the ‘General Information and Announcements About CMLP’ category

Estate Settlement and Trust Administration Seminar

August 6, 2015

LocationEthan Allen Hotel, 21 Lake Ave Ext, Danbury, CT 06811

Date:  September 24, 2015

Time:  7:00 to 9:00 (Doors open at 6:30)

Register here:  Seminar Registration.  Or, call 203-744-1929 for reservations.  For more contact information, go to the end of this post.

No admission charge.  Our seminars are always strictly educational.

Description

We will cover the topics listed below.  Each listed Part corresponds to a Part in our Estate Settlement and Trust Administration video which you can see on YouTube here:  Estate Settlement and Trust Administration Video.

To get the most out of the seminar, attendees should view the whole video before attending.  We understand that time may not permit that, however, and we are structuring the program to make certain it will be well worth your time even if you do not view the video.

Send Us Your Questions

If you think of a question before the seminar, let us know right away before you forget.  If the question is appropriate for a group educational program, we will try to answer it during the program.  Send your questions here: rsl@danburylaw.com (Richard S. Land) or here ksg@danburylaw.com (Kasey S. Galner).

 Seminar Topics

Part 1:  Introduction.  Estate settlement steps starting with the probate application and the inventory.

Part 2: A continuation of estate settlement steps including problems relating to real estate, tangible personal property and estate and income taxes.  The importance of identifying problems early.  A description of our estate settlement letter and estate settlement checklists.  A discussion of the importance of post mortem tax planning.

Part 3:  Accounting requirements and fees and costs including the fees of the Probate Court, Executor fees and attorneys.

Part 4:  A description of trust administration, the duties of a trustee and the related risks.

Part 5:  The most common problems related to being a trustee including accounting, investing and self-dealing.

Part 6:  A continuation of a description of the Trustee’s most common problems including personal liability for contracts entered into as trustee and claims based on a trustee’s negligence and torts including claims related to contaminated property.  Trustee compensation is also discussed.

SEMINAR LOCATION AND TIME

The seminar will be on September 24, 2015, at the Ethan Allen Hotel, 21 Lake Ave Ext, Danbury, CT 06811 from 7:00 p.m. to 9:00 p.m. The doors will open at 6:30. Refreshments will be served.

These seminars are always well attended and space is limited. If you wish to attend, or if others you know are interested in attending, to reserve space call us (203-744-1929) or send an e-mail message to me (Richard Land at rsl@danburylaw.com) or Kasey Galner (at ksg@danburylaw.com) or Deb Jewell (at doj@danburylaw.com) containing your name, number attending, telephone number and e-mail address.

You may also register here: Seminar Registration.

 Posted on 8/6/2015 by Richard S. Land, Member, Chipman, Mazzucco, Land & Pennarola, LLC.

We frequently post articles relating to estate planning, estate settlement and elder law issues to this blog. We also post notices about our client seminars here. When we do, we send out notices to clients and friends of the firm. If you would like to get our notices, please join our mailing list by clicking below.

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Chipman Mazzucco Offers Complimentary Estate Plan Review

January 15, 2015

Chipman Mazzucco is pleased to announce a new complimentary online Estate Plan Review.

Answer a series of thought-provoking questions about your circumstances and objectives and receive a personalized report.  We are providing this service without charge to encourage you to reflect on your estate plan from time to time.

To register and participate in the Review, click on this link: Chipman Mazzucco Online Estate Plan ReviewNote: The password you use to register must have at least eight characters, one or more upper case letters and one or more numbers (example: Reviewplan123).

For this initial test, we are limiting this offer to the first 100 participants who are residents of Connecticut and New York.

For a short demonstration (4.5 minutes), click on the video below.

We hope this helps you keep your estate plan current.

Posted on January 15, 2015
by Richard S. Land
Member
Chipman Mazzucco

Do You Qualify for Wills Without Charge in Honor of Mother’s Day and Father’s Day?

May 2, 2013

Only for New York and Connecticut Residents

In honor of Mother’s Day and Father’s Day, Chipman Mazzucco offers this too good to be true opportunity to new parents who have had Wills on their minds but have not yet done anything about it.

You may qualify for a Last Will and Testament without charge if: (1) You are a new parent and your life is still relatively simple; (2) You are a resident of Connecticut or New York and your estate is less than $1,000,000; (3) You contact us between May 12 (Mother’s Day) and June 16 (Father’s Day); and (4) You can meet at our offices in Danbury, Connecticut, so that we can properly supervise the signing of your documents.

If you qualify, your Power of Attorney, Health Care Instructions (including “Living Will”) with Appointment of Health Care Representative, and Designation of Conservator also will be included without charge.

Helpful Screencast. Your Will, and related planning, are too important for you to attempt without an understanding of some essential basic information. We therefore ask you to watch our seminar on YouTube entitled “Basic Estate Planning after ATRA” (the American Taxpayer Relief Act).

Is your situation simple enough to qualify?

To give us the information we need to prepare your Will properly, and to find out if you qualify for our Wills Without Charge program, please complete our estate planning client questionnaire. You can find it here: Estate Planning Information Form.

If you satisfy the conditions described above, there is a very good chance that you will qualify for our Wills Without Charge opportunity.  If you are concerned about any of the issues listed below, however, your planning may require special attention which is not part of the program.

Speical Concerns:

(1) Special problems plague your beneficiaries such as creditor problems; divorces and troubled marriages; poor judgment; gambling habits; drug dependence; health problems; special needs; and trouble handling financial affairs.

(2) You are interested in planning for long term care, whether at home or in a nursing home, for yourself, your spouse or other beneficiary.

(3) Your primary beneficiary is your current spouse and you want to provide for the children of a previous marriage.

(4) You own a business which will require management if it is to provide appropriately for your beneficiaries after your death.

(5) You are concerned about the management of your assets for you and your family in the event of your incapacity and you want to consider a revocable trust.

(6) You want to disinherit an undeserving relative or you would like to include provisions in your planning documents that your survivors might consider controversial.

(7) You have difficult-to-manage assets (for example, a closely held business, rental properties, collections of art, antiques and other creative works, weapons, etc.).

(8) You are concerned that your surviving spouse’s remarriage after your death will result in a diversion of your assets away from your children or other intended beneficiaries.

(9) Your estate for estate tax purposes is larger than $1,000,000.  You may be wealthier (for estate tax purposes) than you think you are. To determine the size of your estate, start by counting everything that will pass to others at the time of your death: home, retirement accounts, annuities, IRAs, life insurance, bank accounts, stocks and bonds—everything. Is it over $1,000,000?

(10) Your estate is increasing and there is a strong possibility that, as a result of your efforts, luck, inflation, additional life insurance, or a combination of such factors, you will join the ranks of the “wealthy”. In that case, it may be important for your documents to include all the existing tools for effective “post mortem” tax planning. See: It’s Not Too Late (Fixing Your Estate Plan After Your Death).

(11) You want to provide for your grandchildren by bypassing your children to some extent.

(12) Although disadvantages of probate are often overstated, you nevertheless wish to arrange your affairs to avoid probate.

Other unique facts may require unique (and perhaps not simple) solutions.

If you believe you may qualify, contact us: Richard S. Land (rsl@danburylaw.com); Kasey S. Galner (ksg@danburylaw.com); or Lynn D’Ostilio (lsd@danburylaw.com). Or, call us at 203-744-1929.

For a PDF announcement go here: Wills Without Charge in Honor of Mother’s Day and Father’s Day.

 Posted on 5/1/2013 by Richard S. Land, Member, Chipman, Mazzucco, Land & Pennarola, LLC.

Notice: To comply with U.S. Treasury Department rules and regulations, we inform you that any U.S. federal tax advice contained in this communication is not intended or written to be used, and cannot be used, for the purpose of (i) avoiding penalties under the Internal Revenue Code or (ii) promoting, marketing or recommending to another party any transaction, tax strategy or other activity.

We frequently post articles relating to estate planning, estate settlement and elder law issues to this blog. We also post notices about our client seminars here. When we do, we send out notices to clients and friends of the firm. If you would like to get our notices, please join our mailing list by clicking below.

Join Email List

Basic Estate Planning Seminar With Extended Q&A Format

July 5, 2012

LocationMatrix Corporate Center, Sunset Vista Room, Fourth Floor, 39 Old Ridgebury Road, Danbury, CT

Directions:  Directions to Chipman MazzuccoDon’t rely on your GPS.  Please read and follow these directions.

Date:  July 26, 2012

Time:  5:30 to 7:30 pm (Doors open at 5:00)

Register here:  Seminar Registration.  Or, call 203-744-1929 for reservations.  For more contact information, go to the end of this post.  

No admission charge.  Our seminars are always strictly educational.

Description

We will cover the topics listed below.  Each listed Part corresponds to a Part in our Basic Estate Planning Video which you can see on YouTube here:  Basic Estate Planning Video.  If you would like to have the video on DVD, please let us know and we will send you one.

The Seminar will have four sections.  Each section will summarize topics covered in the video.  Q&A will follow each section.

To get the most out of the seminar, attendees should view the whole video before attending.  We understand that time may not permit that, however, and we are structuring the program to make certain it will be well worth your time even if you do not view the video.

Send Us Your Questions

If you think of a question before the seminar, let us know right away before you forget.  If the question is appropriate for a group educational program, we will try to answer it during the program.  Send your questions here: rsl@danburylaw.com (Richard S. Land) or here ksg@danburylaw.com (Kasey S. Galner).

 Seminar Topics

Part 1:  Introduction.  Wills and probate property vs. nonprobate property.

Part 2: Beneficiaries, mistakes with nonprobate property, trust basics, guardian appointments, life insurance beneficiary designations, and estate taxes.

Part 3:  Wills, the estate taxation of life insurance death benefits, tax issues and asset protection issues relating to Wills, and disclaimer Wills.

Part 4: Formula marital deduction Wills, exemption trusts, risk of disinheriting the surviving spouse as estate tax exemptions increase, the portable estate tax exemption, and asset protection bypass trusts.

Part 5:  Formula marital deduction Wills (and exemption trusts) vs. disclaimer Wills (and disclaimer trusts), and common estate planning mistakes.

Part 6:  Common estate planning mistakes continued, the duties of an Executor, the duties of the Trustee, the duties of a guardian, planning for post-death cash needs, and the generation skipping tax.

Part 7: Retirement plan accounts (IRAs, 401(k) plans, 403(b) accounts, etc.), estate taxation on retirement plan accounts, the risk of a circular tax on tax problem at death of account owner, life insurance and irrevocable life insurance trusts as a solution.

Part 8: Retirement plan accounts and related income tax issues, effects of beneficiary designations on deferral periods, spouse as beneficiary and tax deferred rollovers, required minimum distributions, and tax treatment of inherited IRAs, and the five year payout rule.

Part 9: Revocable living trusts, the living trust as a Will substitute, probate avoidance, planning for incapacity, and establishing a revocable living trust.

Part 10:  Comparison of revocable living trust plan with non-living-trust plan, treatment of lifetime issues, powers of attorney as an alternative to the revocable living trust, and what it means to avoid probate.

Part 11:  Comparison continued, avoiding ancillary probate in other states where real property is located, creditors’ claims and safe harbors for the Executor, and income and estate taxes.

Part 12:  Comparison (continued), accounting requirements, releases from liability, continuing trusts and continuing probate court jurisdiction, reasons for considering revocable living trusts, management during incapacity, and real property in other jurisdictions.

Part 13:  Reasons for considering a revocable living trust (continued), controversial estate plans, probate notice requirements, disruption of support for third parties, probate and related delays, simplifying estate settlement for survivors, nonreasons for considering revocable living trusts, the living trust as tax neutral, and probate court fees.

Part 14: Gift planning, gift and estate tax exemptions, exclusions for small gifts, gifts to education funds (529 plans), exclusions for qualified tuition and medical costs, gift tax marital deductions,  gifts to U.S. citizen spouse, and gifts to noncitizen spouse.

Part 15: Gifts of life insurance policies, incidents of ownership, irrevocable trusts as owner, three year rule relating to transfers of life insurance policies, and sophisticated gift techniques (qualified personal residence trusts, grantor retained annuity trusts, valuations for gift tax purposes, gifts to charities and charitable trusts).

SEMINAR LOCATION AND TIME

The seminar will be on July 26, 2012, at the Matrix Corporate Center, Sunset Vista Room, Fourth Floor, 39 Old Ridgebury Road, Danbury, Connecticut from 5:30 p.m. to 7:30 p.m. The doors will open at 5:00. Refreshments will be served.

These seminars are always well attended and space is limited. If you wish to attend, or if others you know are interested in attending, to reserve space call us (203-744-1929) or send an e-mail message to me (Richard Land at rsl@danburylaw.com) or Kasey Galner (at ksg@danburylaw.com) or Lynn D’Ostilio (at lsd@danburylaw.com) containing your name, number attending, telephone number and e-mail address.

You may also register here: Seminar Registration.

 Posted on 7/4/2012 by Richard S. Land, Member, Chipman, Mazzucco, Land & Pennarola, LLC.

Notice: To comply with U.S. Treasury Department rules and regulations, we inform you that any U.S. federal tax advice contained in this communication is not intended or written to be used, and cannot be used, for the purpose of (i) avoiding penalties under the Internal Revenue Code or (ii) promoting, marketing or recommending to another party any transaction, tax strategy or other activity.

We frequently post articles relating to estate planning, estate settlement and elder law issues to this blog. We also post notices about our client seminars here. When we do, we send out notices to clients and friends of the firm. If you would like to get our notices, please join our mailing list by clicking below.

The Formalities of Operating an LLC

June 6, 2012

When you establish a limited liability company (an “LLC”), you probably do so with the expectation that the LLC will accomplish certain tax and asset protection goals. It is not enough, however, to merely prepare the Articles of Organization and file them with the Secretary of the State. If you do not operate your LLC in a manner that respects its status as a separate entity, you run the risk of jeopardizing some important goals you have when you establish the LLC.

Below is a brief summary of certain formalities that are especially important for you to follow.  Although this post is not intended to be a comprehensive review of every law or requirement related to a limited liability company, it highlights many of the important issues involved when operating an LLC. For specific legal advice, please refer all questions to your attorney.

Prepare an Operating Agreement.

The members of the LLC, if more than one, should enter into an Operating Agreement. The terms of the Operating Agreement will describe each member’s powers and authority, set forth the procedural rules to follow when scheduling meetings and making decisions, and describe the economic interests and voting rights of each member.

Keep LLC funds separate from personal funds.

Establish separate bank accounts and brokerage accounts in the name of the LLC. Obtain a taxpayer identification number from the IRS for the LLC and make certain the LLC accounts are opened with the LLC’s taxpayer identification number. Do not use the LLC accounts for your personal funds. Do not pay personal expenses from the LLC’s funds. “Perks,” such as a company automobile, must be authorized by the members of the LLC as set forth in the LLC’s Operating Agreement and used for business purposes. If “perks” are utilized for both business and personal purposes, you should consult your accountant regarding allocation of expenses and the possibility that such “perks” will be considered income.

Adopt arms length business formalities when borrowing from or lending to the LLC.

Do not informally borrow money from the LLC . While an LLC is permitted to lend money to its members, managers and officers, such action must be approved by the managers of the LLC pursuant to the terms of the Operating Agreement and state law.  A loan made to any member should be adequately documented. The terms of any loan and its documentation must be carefully structured and prepared for both tax and legal purposes. Similarly, personal loans to the LLC should be documented and approved by the LLC’s managers pursuant to the terms of the Operating Agreement.

Make certain that customers and vendors recognize the LLC as the party to LLC transactions.

Make certain that the individuals and businesses with whom you conduct business know they are dealing with an LLC . All stationery, billings, telephone listings, business cards, signs, liability insurance policies, business licenses, credit cards, and the like should bear the LLC’s name. The Operating Agreement will identify the members of the LLC who are authorized to act for the LLC. Only members who have been so authorized should sign documents on behalf of the LLC. The signer should always note his position with the LLC on such documents. If you mistakenly lead someone to believe that they are dealing with you, as an individual, instead of the LLC , you may be held personally liable.

Make certain that members acting on behalf of the LLC have authority to do so.

The members of the LLC should approve, in writing, the LLC’s major transactions. The Operating Agreement will typically identify a range of actions that require approval of the members. Examples are:

(1) Amending the Articles of Organization.

(2) Electing Managers.

(3) Taking any action that would make it impossible to carry on the ordinary business of the LLC .

(4) Confessing a judgment against the LLC in excess of a certain amount set in the Operating Agreement.

(5) Filing a bankruptcy petition for or against the LLC .

(6) Lending LLC funds on terms inconsistent with terms described in the Operating Agreement.

(7) Borrowing in amounts that exceed limits expressed in the Operating Agreement.

Satisfy tax return requirements.

All tax returns should be carefully prepared and timely filed and tax obligations (for example, franchise taxes and business organization taxes) should be paid in a timely manner. You should consult with your accountant regarding the various state and federal tax requirements.

Satisfy state reporting requirements.

The LLC must file periodic reports with the Secretary of the State and pay filing fees. Such reports typically include the names and addresses of its managers, or if none, its members, and the address of its principal office. Such reports also include the identity of an agent for service of process.

Obtain sufficient capital for the LLC.

It is important that the LLC be sufficiently capitalized to engage in the business it is conducting. LLCs which are thinly capitalized are more likely to be viewed as mere shells, thereby losing their capacity to shield you from certain personal liabilities.

Respect the rules for allocating the LLC’s profits and losses and for making distributions.

The Operating Agreement will describe how profits and losses are to be allocated among the members of the LLC. Distributions from the LLC should be consistent with such provisions. Distributions to the members made from the LLC in excess of profits must be made as provided in the Operating Agreement.

Respect the management structure described in the Operating Agreement.

An LLC may be either manager managed or member managed. The members who have management powers and responsibilities generally have unilateral authority to conduct the following activities:

(1) Enter into and perform agreements for the LLC .

(2) Open and maintain bank accounts and investment accounts, and draw checks and other orders for the payment of money.

(3) Collect funds due to the LLC .

(4) Acquire, utilize for the LLC’s purposes, maintain and dispose of any assets of the LLC .

(5) Pay debts and obligations of the LLC .

(6) Borrow money or otherwise commit the credit of the LLC for LLC activities.

(7) Employ from time to time persons, firms or corporations for the operation and management of various aspects of the LLC’s business.

(8) Obtain general liability, property and other insurance for the LLC .

If the LLC is member managed, each member has the right to participate in day to day operations of the LLC. If the LLC is manager managed, the Operating Agreement will identify the manager or managers, who have exclusive authority over the day to day operations, while the nonmanaging members have no such authority.

Posted on 6/2/2012 by Richard S. Land, Member, Chipman, Mazzucco, Land & Pennarola, LLC.

Notice: To comply with U.S. Treasury Department rules and regulations, we inform you that any U.S. federal tax advice contained in this communication is not intended or written to be used, and cannot be used, for the purpose of (i) avoiding penalties under the Internal Revenue Code or (ii) promoting, marketing or recommending to another party any transaction, tax strategy or other activity.

We frequently post articles relating to estate planning, estate settlement and elder law issues to this blog. We also post notices about our client seminars here. When we do, we send out notices to clients and friends of the firm. If you would like to get our notices, please join our mailing list by clicking below.

     
  Join Email List  
     

Chipman Mazzucco | Promote Your Page Too

Planning Question and Answer Sessions. Please Take This Survey!

May 15, 2012

When Do You Want an Estate Planning Q&A Session?  Please take this survey.

 May 15, 2012.

We recently published a Basic Estate Planning video on YouTube and DVD.  We hope that you will have a chance to see it if you have not already done so.

You can see the YouTube version here:  Basic Estate Planning Screencast on YouTube

We are scheduling group meetings so that interested parties can ask questions related to the subjects in the video.  There will be no charge or obligation. 

Location: Chipman Mazzucco, Attorneys, Matrix Corporate Center, 39 Old Ridgebury Road, Suite D-2, Danbury, Ct. o6810.

We ask you to click on the link below to complete this survey so that we know what will be convenient for you.  It will take only one minute.

Survey Link

 
Thank you for participating in the survey.  It will be a great help to us in our efforts to help you.
 
 
Posted on 5/15/2012 by Richard S. Land, Member, Chipman, Mazzucco, Land & Pennarola, LLC.

Notice: To comply with U.S. Treasury Department rules and regulations, we inform you that any U.S. federal tax advice contained in this communication is not intended or written to be used, and cannot be used, for the purpose of (i) avoiding penalties under the Internal Revenue Code or (ii) promoting, marketing or recommending to another party any transaction, tax strategy or other activity.

We frequently post articles relating to estate planning, estate settlement and elder law issues to this blog. We also post notices about our client seminars here. When we do, we send out notices to clients and friends of the firm. If you would like to get our notices, please join our mailing list by clicking below.

     
  Join Email List  
     

Chipman Mazzucco | Promote Your Page Too

 

Ten Reasons Why You Will Love Our New Location

November 26, 2011

Our new location at the Matrix Corporate Center has many charms that we believe you will appreciate.  Here is our top ten list (David Letterman style, in reverse order).

Ten Reasons Why You Will Love Our New Location

(10) Our office door is less than five minutes from I-84 Exit One and less than ten minutes from Route 7.

(9) The drive here is like an old-fashioned Sunday drive in the country. The grounds are like a park. The building, not visible from any public road, is an architectural wonder.

(8) You will find lots of available parking.

(7) The new furniture in our reception area is actually comfortable.

(6) You can experience our cafeteria: a variety of great food in a peaceful setting.

(5) You can bring children and keep them entertained in our game room (Wii and Foosball).

(4) You can relax with Starbuck’s coffee (and other refreshments) before, during or after our meeting at our café.

(3) You can park just a few steps away from the door to our offices.

(2) You can enjoy the great country views from our windows.

(1) Our covered parking will shelter you from rain, wind, sleet and snow.


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