The primary reason most people engage in estate planning is to name who they want to receive their assets when they pass away. Beneficiaries can be named in a will, a trust or pursuant to a beneficiary designation. When naming beneficiaries, it is critically important that your will and your trust (if you have one), not only coordinate with each other, but with the beneficiaries you have named on your various investments, as well as with how your assets are titled. Failure to properly coordinate in all of these areas could have unintended, and in some cases, disastrous consequences. Read More ›
Categories: Estate Planning
When people decide to engage in estate planning, typically they focus on naming the beneficiaries of their estate and making sure their estate avoids probate when they pass away. In most cases, these concerns are addressed by the preparation of a will, a living trust and certain probate avoidance documents. Those standard documents are an important part of the overall estate planning process, however, durable powers of attorney for financial matters and health care are just as important for other reasons. In fact, regardless of whether they have an estate plan, every adult should have these two durable powers of attorney.
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Many corporate clients ask why they should spend the time and money to maintain a corporate minute book. This is especially common in small or family-run operations. Other corporate clients don't even bother asking the question, they simply don't do it. Read More ›
When someone dies there are many important things that need to be addressed by the survivor or survivors, and some of those things that need to be addressed are time sensitive. Read More ›
In 2021, Michigan passed the Financial Exploitation Prevention Act (FEPA or Act) which took effect last September. FEPA sets forth new requirements on financial institutions to report financial exploitation of vulnerable adults to adult protective services and law enforcement in Michigan, and was a result of work led by the Department of Attorney General’s Elder Abuse Task Force. Read More ›
This article was originally published in September 2019 and has since been updated with more current information.
To say that last year’s 2020 holiday season was strange and exhausting would be a massive understatement. With the pandemic raging out of control and the COVID vaccine unavailable to most, many families had to settle for Zoom parties in place of visiting with loved ones.
Even worse, grandparents and other family members more at risk of severe COVID outcomes were forced to shelter away from loved ones, creating even more mental stress, and loneliness. Read More ›
This blog post was originally published in 2019 and has been updated to include the most current information.
Our country’s veterans selflessly sacrificed in service of others, but whether due to pride or lack of knowledge, many don’t take advantage of the help available to them after leaving the military. There are many valuable benefits available to veterans—from tuition to long-term care assistance—that often go unused. Many of those who are eligible are unaware that certain benefits exist. Others whose eligibility is uncertain don’t realize that an attorney can help them obtain the benefits they’ve earned. Read More ›
Many life events will prompt people to consider estate planning to protect their assets and family. Many will rush to an attorney before they travel (especially far), start a business, or complete a messy estate administration for a senior parent. An even more common event that triggers clients to prepare an estate plan is when they become new parents, or their aging parent’s guardian. Abandoning their lives of adventure and no longer living recklessly, they sell their motorcycles, stop hang gliding, and plan a family. Young couples often meet with an attorney to discuss their new family’s needs, and to create an estate plan to support themselves and their family. Read More ›
Britney Spears’ 13-year old conservatorship is making headlines once again after a judge denied a 2020 request to remove Ms. Spears’ father as conservator of her finances. Ms. Spears delivered an emotional testimony at the hearing and indicated she may soon petition the court to end the conservatorship altogether. The resurgence of the #FreeBritney movement is a good opportunity to discuss the legality of conservatorships and how attorneys can help. Read More ›
According to Michigan.gov, Michigan has over 1.2 million drivers that are age 65 and older. By 2025, it is expected that one in five drivers will be 65 and older. This is a trend that is sweeping across the country with more older drivers on the road than ever before. A person's ability to drive can mean everything to them; it serves not just as a means of getting from Point A to Point B, but it also represents their independence and personal freedom.
However data shows that driving gets riskier with age and while old age alone is not a reason to stop driving, a number of physical and mental conditions, such as dementia and vision/hearing impairment, can lead to an unsafe driver getting behind the wheel and possibly hurting themselves or others. So at one point does it become obvious that a senior driver must be told to give up the keys? Read More ›
Due to the shock of the death of a spouse or a loved one, the steps of what needs to be done first can be an overwhelming process for the survivor(s). To aid in the breakdown and to act as a tool amidst the emotional days ahead, estate planning Jonathan "Jay" David has assembled a "Survivor's Checklist" of some of the important things that need to be addressed when a spouse or loved one dies.
COVID-19 Checklist & Elder Organizer Tool
For adult children responsible for their elderly parents and other senior caretakers concerned about protecting loved ones as the COVID-19 pandemic continues, below is a free downloadable checklist of steps to follow to prepare for any possible COVID-19-related illnesses among the most-vulnerable.
Foster Swift has created a free ‘Elder Organizer’ digital notebook to provide seniors and their caretakers with a toolkit that helps organize doctors’ appointments, medications, and more that can be shared online. The tools below are also available on the Elder Law Resources page.
*For those trying to access these links by smartphone, it is best practice to copy/open the link in a separate tab and download the free Google Sheets app from Google Play or the Apple Store.
- Fraud & Abuse
- Senior Exploitation & Abuse
- Powers of Attorney
- Health Care Reform
- Medicaid Planning
- Elder Law
- Financing Long-term Care
- Estate Planning
- Did you Know?
- Alerts and Updates
- Dementia & Alzheimer's
- Long-Term Care
- VA Aid & Attendance
- Personal Property Tax
- Legislative Updates
- Digital Assets
E-book Covers Estate Planning Essentials
Engaging in estate planning, while essential, is often emotional and generates many questions. How do I protect my spouse and my children if something happens to me? What happens if I become disabled before I pass on? Who will take care of my pet after I'm gone? How do I pass my business on to my children? These questions and more are addressed in Jonathan David’s recently updated e-book, “Estate Planning: You Have to Start in Order to Finish.”
Need Help Planning?
For more tools, visit our Elder Law Resource page for additional content. Click here to view/download the Foster Swift estate planning brochure to see what our experienced team of attorneys can do for you.
Meet the Team
Watch attorney Matthew Fedor explain a brief overview of elder law and how it can help either your or your loved ones.