Posted tagged ‘title 19’

Seminar: How Resilient is Your Estate Plan? Will Your Plan Work as Things Change?

October 8, 2019

Estate Planning Seminar!

October 17, 2019

We invite you to a free seminar on October 17, 2019, at the Ethan Allen Hotel in Danbury, Connecticut (21 Lake Avenue Ext).

Topic: How Resilient is Your Estate Plan?

The presentation will start at 6:30 PM.

To register, call 203-744-1929 (please provide your email address) or email us at dvv@danburylaw.com.  You also can register here: Seminar Registration.

Informative and fun. Come learn and have a great time.

We intend to cover changes of all kinds (not just law and taxes) that will most affect your estate plan.

Reconnect with all the attorneys in our estate planning and probate practice group.

Topics include:

  • Probate Courts
  • Issues related to Change of Residence
  • Coping with the Surge of Conservatorship Proceedings
  • How Estate Planning Changes with Each Stage of Life
  • Changes in Law that Could Affect Your Estate Plan.

The presentation will start at 6:30 PM. Light refreshments will be served.

To register, click below or call us at 203-744-1929 or email us at
dvv@danburylaw.com.

REGISTER HERE


The Presenters and Their Topics:

Richard L. Emerson

Topic: Insights from a Former Probate Judge

The Probate Courts have been affected by important changes. Attorney Richard L. Emerson will inform us about the workings of the Probate Courts as only a former Probate Court Judge can.

Attorney Richard L. Emerson served as the Probate Judge in Redding, Connecticut, for over thirty years. His legal practice concentrates on estate administration, probate, estate planning, trust and estate disputes and general corporate representation. He also has mediated contested probate matters and has appeared as an expert witness for other attorneys.

James J. Flaherty, Jr.

Topic: Thinking About Moving Out of Connecticut? Consider
This.

We often hear about people moving out of Connecticut. Is this merely a case of “the grass is always greener…”? James J. Flaherty, Jr., will discuss issues related to a change of residence. Whether you stay or go, if you are wondering about leaving, this is information you need.

Attorney James J. Flaherty, Jr., practices from the firm’s Southbury office and is a member of the estate planning and probate group. Jim’s practice focuses on assisting high net worth individuals, including closely held business owners, in the creation of wealth succession plans. In addition to estate planning, Jim works with individuals on Medicaid (Title 19) and asset protection planning.

Alyson R. Marcucio

Topic: Coping with the Surge in Conservatorship
Proceedings

The increasing number of conservatorship proceedings creates additional demands on our Probate Courts. Alyson R. Marcucio will discuss planning steps to work around crowded court dockets and long wait times.

Attorney Alyson Marcucio is a member of the firm’s estate planning and probate group, with an emphasis on elder law and
planning for those who have chronic disabilities. Alyson’s practice includes long term care, incapacity and special needs planning, eligibility for Medicaid and other public benefits, and conservatorship proceedings.

 

Elizabeth J. Hartery

Topic: Estate Planning for Each of Life’s Stages

Life is often thought of as having twelve stages. Estate planning starts with the sixth stage and ends with the twelfth: late adolescence; early adulthood; midlife; mature adulthood; late adulthood; and death and dying. Liz Hartery will discuss how the planning focus changes as we pass through each stage.

Attorney Elizabeth J. Hartery is an associate in the firm’s estate planning and probate group, assisting with estate planning, estate settlement, probate matters, and elder law issues.

 

Richard S. Land

Master of Ceremonies

Attorney Richard S. Land heads up the firm’s estate planning and probate group, helping individuals from all walks of life to manage and dispose of their assets in an orderly fashion through lifetime transfers and through transfers at death by wills and trusts.

Richard has authored and produced dozens of educational videos on estate planning and trust and estates topics, authored several computer generated estate planning document assembly systems and authored an online estate plan review program.

No Admission Charge

Our seminars are always strictly educational and well attended.  Space is limited so please let us know if you plan to attend.

Light snacks, desserts and beverages will be offered.

To register, click on this link: Seminar Registration.

Please join us at the Ethan Allen Hotel (21 Lake Avenue Ext., Danbury, CT) on October 17, 2019.

We look forward to seeing you.

Chipman Mazzucco Emerson LLC
Attorneys at Law
44 Old Ridgebury Road
Suite 320
Danbury, CT 06810
203-744-1929

 

Estate Planning for Beginners; Elder Law in a Nutshell; How to Make Certain Your Estate Plan Works as Everything Else Changes

September 30, 2018

FREE Estate Planning Seminar!

October 25, 2018

We invite you to a free seminar on October 25, 2018, at the Ethan Allen Hotel in Danbury, Connecticut (21 Lake Avenue Ext).

Topics: Estate Planning for Beginners and Elder Law in a Nutshell

Including: How to Make Certain Your Estate Plan Works as Everything Else Changes (including Trump Tax Changes)

The presentation will start at 6:30 PM. For more information, click here:  Seminar October 25.

To register, call 203-744-1929 (please provide your email address) or email us at dvv@danburylaw.com.  You also can register here: Seminar Registration.

The presenters and their topics:

Make Certain Your Estate Plan Works as Everything Else Changes

As everything around you changes, you may not recognize the impact the changes have on your estate plan.

Laws change; your health and financial condition change; the health and financial condition of your beneficiaries change; maybe your beneficiary designations change as your assets change; and the fates of the people you are depending on to act as your Executors, Trustees, agents under a power of attorney and health care representatives change.

Attorney Richard S. Land will discuss how to make certain that such changes will not interfere with, or totally disrupt, your estate plan.

Elder Law in a Nutshell

Alyson's Favorite Photo

What is Elder Law and how can an Elder Law attorney help you through the complex issues associated with aging?

The special needs of the elderly are not unique to the elderly, however. Persons of all ages may suffer from chronic conditions resulting in special needs requiring specialized legal help.

Attorney Alyson Marcucio will cover legal issues and solutions related to the special needs of the elderly and all others with special needs.

Estate Planning for Beginners: Features of Wills, Trusts and Powers of Attorney

 

What is the difference between a will and a revocable trust? What are the powers in a Power of Attorney? Do I even need an estate plan?

Attorney Elizabeth J. Hartery will answer those questions and many others in her presentation, which will explain the basic features of wills, trusts, Powers of Attorney, living wills and more.

 

No Admission Charge

Our seminars are always strictly educational and well attended.  Space is limited so please let us know if you plan to attend.

Light snacks, desserts and beverages will be offered.

To register, click on this link: Seminar Registration.

Please join us at the Ethan Allen Hotel (21 Lake Avenue Ext., Danbury, CT) on October 25, 2018.

We look forward to seeing you.

Chipman Mazzucco
Attorneys at Law
44 Old Ridgebury Road
Suite 320
Danbury, CT 06810
203-744-1929

 

Video of October 5, 2017, Seminar Posted to YouTube

November 26, 2017

On November 19, 2017, we posted to YouTube the video of our annual fall estate planning seminar (held on October 5, 2017).

senior couple in parkIn Part I (How to Make Certain Your Estate Plan Works as Everything Else Changes), Richard S. Land covers the reasons why an estate planning review might be necessary. Approximately 40 minutes.

In Part II (Senior Autonomy: A Guide to Families as Roles are Reversed), Alyson Marcucio covers planning to maximize autonomy throughout the elder care continuum: health and ability issues (powers of attorney, living trusts, conservatorships, living wills and other health care directives); home care and alternatives (independent living, assisted living, retirement communities, nursing homes); the cost of care and how to plan for it; and public benefits to help pay for care. Approximately 40 minutes.

Both Part I and Part II include planning strategies for the prevention of financial elder abuse including properly structured estate planning powers of attorney, living trusts and related documents.

Although the turnout was great (as usual), many of you could not attend. Here is your chance to find out what you missed. Click on the images below to go to the presentations.

We hope these videos are helpful.  Please let us know if you have any questions.

Chipman Mazzucco
Attorneys at Law
Matrix Corporate Center
39 Old Ridgebury Road
Suite D-2
Danbury, CT 06810
203-744-1929

October 5, 2017, Seminar: Senior Autonomy for Families as Roles are Reversed

September 2, 2017

Save the Date October 5, 2017
FREE Seminar!

 

We invite you to a free seminar on October 5, 2017, at the Ethan Allen Hotel in Danbury, Connecticut (21 Lake Avenue Ext).

Topic: Senior Autonomy: A Guide for Families as Roles are Reversed

Including: How to Make Certain Your Estate Plan Works as Everything Else Changes

The presentation will start at 6:30 PM. For more information, click here:  Seminar October 5.

To register, call 203-744-1929 (please provide your email address) or email us at rsl@danburylaw.com.  You also can register here: Seminar Registration.

The presenters and their topics:

Make Certain Your Estate Plan Works as Everything Else Changes

Richard S. Land, Attorney

As everything around you changes, you may not recognize the impact the changes have on your estate plan.

Laws change; your health and financial condition change; the health and financial condition of your beneficiaries change; maybe your beneficiary designations change as your assets change; and the fates of the people you are depending on to act as your Executors, Trustees, agents under a power of attorney and health care representatives change.

Attorney Richard S. Land will discuss how to make certain that such changes will not interfere with, or totally disrupt, your estate plan.

Preserving Autonomy as Independence Declines

Alyson R. Marcucio, Attorney

How do you plan to maintain autonomy as your independence declines?

To help guide our clients, last year we invited Attorney Alyson R. Marcucio to join us as a Member of the firm after an exhaustive search for an attorney with her skills, knowledge and experience performing long-term care and estate planning services for seniors and the chronically disabled.

Alyson’s presentation will cover planning techniques designed to preserve autonomy as independence declines with aging including home care options, resources available to help create and maintain a safe home environment, planning techniques to maintain control through properly prepared trust agreements, powers of attorney and health care directives, and the relationships necessary to protect your independence when you are most vulnerable.

No Admission Charge

Our seminars are always strictly educational and well attended.  Space is limited so please let us know if you plan to attend.

Light snacks, desserts and beverages will be offered.

To register, click on this link: Seminar Registration..

Please join us at the Ethan Allen Hotel (21 Lake Avenue Ext., Danbury, CT) on October 5, 2017.

We look forward to seeing you.

Chipman Mazzucco
Attorneys at Law
Matrix Corporate Center
39 Old Ridgebury Road
Suite D-2
Danbury, CT 06810
203-744-1929

Video Completed: Part 4 of Long Term Care Issues and Medicaid

May 8, 2014

 Video on Long Term Care Issues and Medicaid Finished with the Completion of Part Four

Part 4 (the last Part) of our video/slideshow presentation on Long Term Care Issues and Medicaid has been posted to YouTube.  Part 4 discusses home care benefits provided under Medicaid (or Title 19), long term care insurance and planning ideas.

Here is Part 4:

Parts 1, 2, and 3 discuss the following:  (1) What is long term care?  (2) Who and what does Medicaid cover?  (3) What are the income limitations?  (4) What are the asset limitations? (4) What are the rules related to transfers of assets made with the intention of qualifying for Medicaid?

Go directly to the YouTube Playlist.  Click on the image below:

We hope you find our Long Term Care video informative.

 If you have any questions, please contact us.
 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.

Seminar Podcast/Slide Presentation (December 8, 2011)

December 26, 2011

Background

On December 8 we made an estate planning presentation to clients,  friends of the firm, and our new neighbors at the Matrix Corporate Center.  The title:  Planning Your Whole Estate (Coordinating Life Insurance, Employee Benefits and Other Nonprobate Property with the Rest of Your Estate Plan).

A question and answer period followed.  One of the more challenging questions, relating to the ability to roll over  lump sum distributions from retirement plans, inspired a post that you can find here:  Lump Sum Rollover of Retirement Account Not as Simple as Expected.

Although a podcast/slide show is not quite as effective (you miss out on the questions and answers) or fun (you miss out on the food, refreshments and good-natured conversation) as the actual in-person presentation, we thought those who could not attend might appreciate the podcast/slide show as presented below in eight parts. 

The Podcast/Slide Presentation

We hope you find the presentation helpful.

Planning Your Whole Estate Part 1 (your will; probate property vs. nonprobate property)

Planning Your Whole Estate Part 2 (common estate planning mistakes; life insurance beneficiary designations; trusts; guardianships; “in trust for accounts”, retirement accounts; joint property; protection from long term care costs; simple wills)

Planning Your Whole Estate Part 3  (jointly owned property; “in trust for” accounts; life insurance beneficiary and ownership)

Planning Your Whole Estate Part 4 (taxation of life insurance; retirement plan accounts; special tax problems relating to individual retirement accounts and other similar accounts)

Planning Your Whole Estate Part 5 (continuation of special tax problems relating to individual retirement accounts and other similar accounts)

Planning Your Whole Estate Part 6 (continuation of special tax problems relating to individual retirement accounts and other similar accounts; trusts as beneficiary of IRA; beneficiary designation forms)

Planning Your Whole Estate Part 7 (revocable living trusts; reasons to consider: asset management during disability and probate avoidance)

Planning Your Whole Estate Part 8 (continuation of issues relating to revocable living trusts including bogus reasons for revocable living trusts)

We hope you will join us at our next seminar.  If you would like to attend, join our email list by clicking on the button below.

Posted on 12/26/2011 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  
     

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Special Needs Trusts

August 6, 2010

Trust management for the inheritance of a disabled beneficiary can be very important. In addition to providing benefits and management for the disabled beneficiary’s inheritance, the goals of such a trust usually include protection of the trust assets from the beneficiary’s creditors and exclusion of the trust assets from consideration if the beneficiary needs to apply for government aid (for example, Medicaid to pay the costs of long term care). When we refer to a Special Needs Trust, we are referring to a trust established to accomplish such goals.

As discussed here, in order for a disabled person to become eligible, and remain eligible, for government benefits like Medicaid and Supplemental Security Income (SSI), the person must meet strict income and asset criteria. The Connecticut Department of Social Services (“DSS”) takes into account all “countable assets” when determining eligibility for benefits. Even after approval for these benefits, any changes in assets or income, even from an inheritance, can disqualify the person from the assistance he or she needs.

DSS considers a trust created for general maintenance and support as a countable asset for Medicaid purposes. On the other hand, a trust created strictly for supplemental needs, if drafted properly, will not be counted and can be a way to provide additional support to family members who rely on government benefits. The main question is whether a trust is a general support trust (counted as an asset) or a supplemental needs trust (not counted).

The answer depends upon what the person who created the trust intended to create. This may sound simple enough, but even if a Will says, “This trust is intended to be a supplemental needs trust,” the court may still find that it is, in fact, a general support trust. The courts look at the language of the trust instrument in its totality to determine the testator’s intent.

The courts weigh most heavily the amount of discretion the Trustee has over trust distributions. In order for a trust to qualify as a supplemental needs trust, the Trustee must have complete discretion over the trust payments including the discretion not to make distributions to the beneficiary. Seemingly harmless attempts to include standards for the exercise of discretion can result in the creation of a general support trust instead of a supplemental needs trust. If a trust includes guidelines regarding the Trustee’s exercise of discretion, the guidelines should be merely precatory—in the nature of expressing a mere “fond hope,” “wish” or “desire.” Any guideline or instruction that is more definite may limit Trustee discretion with the result of jeopardizing the goals mentioned above.

In the case of Zeoli v. Commissioner of Social Services, the Court held that the Trustee had “absolute and uncontrolled discretion,” over any and all distributions. As a result, the trust assets were not countable in determining eligibility for aid. In more recent decisions, like the decision in Rome v. Wilson-Coker, the Court seemed to suggest that “unfettered” should be added to the “absolute and uncontrolled” standard the Zeoli court used.

For instance, whenever a trust has only one beneficiary and the instructions provide that distributions are to be made for the beneficiary’s “best interest and general welfare” or that the trust assets may be used to support the beneficiary in “reasonable comfort,” the Court may hold that the Trustee’s discretion is not unlimited and that it would be an abuse of discretion for the Trustee to withhold payments when needed for general support. In that case, the trust would fail to achieve the intended goals. This was the approach taken by the Rome Court.

Unlike the Rome case, the Zeoli case involved a trust with more than one beneficiary. Its holding suggests that a Special Needs Trust should include multiple trust beneficiaries while giving the Trustee the ability to benefit one beneficiary and exclude others. The beneficiary’s case is even stronger if the terms of the trust provide that the trust is intended to be a supplement to, rather than a substitute for, other resources.

A Special Needs Trust for a surviving spouse must be established under the terms of a Will (not a revocable trust). Even if the trust for the surviving spouse satisfies all the requirements suggested by the Zeoli and Rome cases, if the trust is established under the terms of the revocable trust agreement of the deceased spouse (instead of under the terms of the Will of the deceased spouse), the trust will be considered a countable asset and disqualify the surviving spouse for Medicaid benefits to pay the costs of long term care. Accordingly, if the goals of a Special Needs Trust for the benefit of a surviving spouse are to be achieved, the trust must be established under the terms of a Will; the Probate Court and the probate process must become involved.

Unfortunately, many people have been frightened into believing that the probate process is something that must be avoided at all costs. As a result, they have used revocable lifetime trusts as the primary vehicle for disposing of their assets at death. If the intention of the revocable trust is to create a Special Needs Trust for the benefit of a surviving spouse, however, it will fail to accomplish the intended goals.

A Special Needs Trust can be an essential tool to enhance the life of its disabled beneficiary who is relying on government assistance programs.  If drafted improperly, trust assets may be depleted rapidly leaving the beneficiary completely dependent upon an impersonal welfare system which is vulnerable to change at any time.

Posted on 8/6/2010 by Kasey S. Galner, Associate, Chipman, Mazzucco, Land & Pennarola, LLC.

Chipman Mazzucco Land & Pennarola’s Estate Planning and Elder Law Blog

December 31, 2009

We recently told our clients that we expected Congress to take action before the end of 2009 to prevent repeal of the U.S. estate tax in 2010. We were wrong. Congress failed to take action.  As a result, estate planning is more difficult than ever.

For the first time since 1915, until Congress acts to re-impose an estate tax, there will be no estate tax on estates of those who die in 2010.

You might expect that the absence of the U.S. estate tax would make life simpler. Look a little under the surface, however, and you begin to understand that absence of the U.S. estate tax leaves behind certain provisions relating to capital gain taxes which will adversely affect everyone who has assets (and I literally mean everyone) while the estate tax, before repeal, adversely affected only a very small group.

The planning for long term care is also constantly changing in an environment where deficits resulting from a weak economy, bank and auto company bailouts, overseas commitments and entitlement programs create pressures to cut programs for those who have the least political muscle.

The planning environment is rapidly changing.  This blog is to help you keep track of the changes that affect you.

As the estate planning scene develops, stay tuned here for summaries of law changes, notices of seminars we will be offering to our clients and their advisors and other new content regarding estate planning and elder law issues.

Our next seminar (entitled “Is it time to review your estate plan?”) is scheduled for January 28, 2010, at the Ethan Allen Inn, Danbury, Connecticut, from 7:00 to 9:00 PM.  Space is limited.  If you wish to attend, contact me at rsl@danburylaw.com or Lynn D’Ostilio at lsd@danburylaw.com to make reservations.

Posted on 12/30/2009 by Richard S. Land, Member, Chipman, Mazzucco, Land & Pennarola, LLC.


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