By: Farrah C. Ramdayal, Attorney at Law. Dearborn, Michigan. Everyone Has an Estate What is an Estate? According to The U.S. Internal Revenue Code, “the value of the gross estate of the decedent shall be determined, by including to the extent provided for in this part, the value at the time of his death of all property, real or personal, tangible, or intangible, wherever situated.” Contrary to popular belief, everyone has an “estate”, whether it’s worth $1 or $100 million. An individual’s estate does not only include a person’s “real estate” nor is it referring strictly to one’s probate estate; instead, your estate includes all the property over which you have some interest at the time of your death
By: James M. Simasko, Attorney at Law. Macomb County, Michigan. Most people spend more time each year planning a vacation than they do creating or reviewing their Estate Plan. Life is constantly changing and at the minimum, you should take the following steps on a periodic basis. Create a Will and Trust. Review these documents after life changing events, i.e. marriage, divorce, a death or birth, a new job, nursing home or long term care admission, etc. Make sure your estate administrator or a close loved one has copies of or access to these documents when they are needed.
By: Jeff M. Burns, Attorney at Law. Macomb County, Michigan. To easily understand the importance of estate planning, search the Web for “the Estate of Spicer H. Breeden.” The case depicts a tragic story that ended with the heartbreaking and untimely death of a beloved reporter from Denver and the suicide of a wealthy Denver socialite. Spicer Breeden was the great-grandson of Charles Boettcher. Mr. Boettcher was a tremendously successful Denver entrepreneur. At age 95, he told Time magazine: ”I like to work. I’ve worked hard all my life, and I suppose I’ll keep working as long as I can raise a hand.” His great-grandson, on the other hand,
By: Erin R. Solaiman, Attorney at Law. An attorney-in-fact is the person you select to act on your behalf under your durable power of attorney. A durable power of attorney can be effective immediately or effective upon your incapacity. Under the power of attorney, that person will be your legal agent, and able to manage your bank accounts, bills, real property and other matters such as retirement accounts and life insurance contracts. They will essentially be able to perform any act related to your property that you could have performed. Many clients want to appoint their spouse as their primary agent, with their children, from oldest to youngest, listed as the successor agents. Naming your spouse first…