Posted on May 29, 2015 by Gregory Herman-Giddens

New Birth Certificate Guidelines in North Carolina for Same-Sex Couples’ Children

LGBT estate planning

Same-sex couples who have a child in North Carolina could previously only list one parent on the child’s birth certificate. This made administration of additional documentation for the child (Social Security card, school registrations, etc.) a challenge for both parents. Those guidelines have now changed. Just seven months after North Carolina legalized same-sex marriage, officials […]

Posted on May 27, 2015 by Gregory Herman-Giddens

Covering Retirement v. Leaving Inheritance

Expenses in senior years continue to be a concern for many Americans. As multiple studies show, most individuals do not maintain adequate retirement contributions. As the costs of long-term care (LTC) insurance policies and LTC costs rise, leaving a legacy behind is becoming less of a priority for some. Financial service and insurance company TIAA-CREF […]

Posted on May 26, 2015 by Gregory Herman-Giddens

Avoid a Will Dispute

An individual’s last will and testament might clearly reflect one’s wishes, but it does not prevent an estate dispute. Successfully contesting a will in North Carolina (and similarly in other states) requires evidence of certain factors. Questioning the validity of a will generally addresses undue influence, improper execution of documents, or questionable last-minute changes. Disputing […]

Posted on May 25, 2015 by Gregory Herman-Giddens

3 Reasons to Choose a Non-Family Trustee

Creating a trust generally involves the intention of preserving assets for loved ones. Benefiting from a trust’s preservation might not be possible if the trust is not maintained properly. One of the many responsibilities of a trustee is ensuring proper paperwork is completed correctly and filed timely—both annually and throughout the term of the trust. […]

Posted on May 24, 2015 by Gregory Herman-Giddens

Opportunities for 529 College Savings Plans

529 College Savings Plans consistently offer long-term tax-deferred growth for future students. As a savings tool, 529 plans come with a few restrictions. For one, contributions must be made with after-tax dollars. (Some state-level deductions might be available. North Carolina’s contribution deduction expired in 2013.) These limits do not entirely cancel out the benefits, such […]

Posted on May 23, 2015 by Gregory Herman-Giddens

Tax Concerns for New Domicile

Living in one state while claiming domicile in another could offer many benefits depending on the jurisdictions. Tax benefits are generally a prime factor when an individual considers claiming domicile outside their resident state. Unfortunately, a recent piece from Physician’s Money Digest highlights a growing number of tax investigations on domicile changes. When executed properly, […]

Posted on May 22, 2015 by Gregory Herman-Giddens

Looking Ahead: Rising Nursing Home Costs in North Carolina

When retirement saving makes headlines, it is often to highlight that Americans are not saving enough for their senior years. Individuals should be realistic about long-term expenses when planning retirement contributions and investments. Recent nursing home cost reports from Genworth revealed that the median annual cost for nursing home care (in a private room) is […]

Posted on May 21, 2015 by Gregory Herman-Giddens

2015 Top 5 States for Domestic Asset Protection Trusts

best states for DAPTs

For the past six years, attorney Steve Oshins has ranked the states that offer Domestic Asset Protection Trusts (DAPTs). The chart generally is ranked through weighted variables including fraudulent transfer standard, pre-existing torts exceptions, spousal support, child support, tax, and statutes of limitations for past and future creditors. A few changes in weighted variables are […]

Posted on May 8, 2015 by Gregory Herman-Giddens

A Will’s Limits in a North Carolina Estate Plan

A will cannot achieve every goal of the testator. No matter how finely crafted provisions are made and assets are addressed in a will, additional tools can help the testator preserve their wishes. An improperly drafted will, one that is not filed, or dying without a will could prompt courts to distribute the estate according […]

Posted on May 7, 2015 by Gregory Herman-Giddens

North Carolina Retirement Concerns

retirement planning

Climate, cost of living, and amenities generally affect an individual’s retirement destination choice. North Carolina’s convenient location between major cities like Atlanta and Washington, D.C. make it attractive to seniors who might want to move but stay close to family in metropolitan areas. Financially, North Carolina became even more attractive for retirement in 2012, when […]

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