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SJC Issues Favorable Decision for Irrevocable Income Only Trusts

On May 30, 2017, the Supreme Judicial Court vacated the judgments of the Worcester County Superior Court companion cases, Daley and Nadeau, concluding that the right to use and occupy a residence does not make the assets contained within an irrevocable income only trust countable for MassHealth purposes.  The cases, which were argued before the […]

Your Real Estate and Owner’s Title Insurance

The most valuable asset many clients own is their primary residence and/or vacation home. One “tool” in the estate planner’s toolbox to effectively avoid the time-consuming and expensive probate process at an owner’s death is to transfer or “convey” real estate into a Trust. However, such a conveyance should be completed with caution to ensure […]

Options to Protect the Primary Residence from Long-Term Care Costs

If you are following along with the irrevocable trust saga, you know that on January 5, 2017, the Supreme Judicial Court heard oral argument on two irrevocable income only trusts where the MassHealth applicant placed his or her primary residence into the trust prior to applying for nursing home benefits.  It was incredible to watch […]

Happy Anniversary to the Massachusetts Estate Tax!

As a follow-up to my July 2016 blog commemorating the 100th anniversary of the federal estate tax, and as promised in that post (and better late than never), we are recognizing the less-significant-but-still-worth-commemorating 40th anniversary of the Massachusetts Estate Tax. The Massachusetts estate tax, like the federal estate tax, is a transfer tax that taxes […]

Five (Good) Reasons to Treat your Children Differently in Your Estate Plan

  A while back, I wrote an article that focused on some of the reasons clients give for deciding to treat their children differently in their Wills and why.  In my experience, those reasons were usually not worth the problems that arose from those decisions (i.e Will contests, damaged family relationships, etc.).  I called that […]