A Brief Q&A on the Maryland Probate Process

The Maryland probate process involves proving that a deceased person’s will is valid and administering property or debts in accordance with the valid will. Depending on the amount of property or debt, the probate process can be complicated. The following information will help you work toward understanding the Maryland probate process. What is a will? A will is a legal document that is signed by the decedent in Read More

Long Term Health Care – the Costs Just Might Kill You!

You simply can not afford to grow old in Maryland - not with what it costs for long term health care i.e. assisted living or nursing home care. That is unless you do a heck of a lot of financial planning now, hit the lottery, or work until you die. One is not desirable, one is not likely, and one seems difficult. But you have to do it because nobody else is and the crisis is getting worse. Every year Genworth Read More

Will Maryland’s Inheritance Tax Force You to Relocate?

Only two states - Maryland and New Jersey - impose an inheritance tax as well as an estate tax on top of the Federal estate tax. Many states are eliminating or have eliminated death taxes altogether. But only these two impose both additional state level death taxes on top of the federal tax. Recently, Maryland signed into law legislation that gradually brings the state estate tax in line with the federal tax. Read More

Long Term Healthcare Insurance – Solution or Dead End?

In my estate planning seminars I often tell potential clients that an important consideration for their long term healthcare is to purchase as much insurance as they can afford as early as they are able to do so. Recent events have caused me to question whether or not that remains true. More and more insurance companies are deciding not to offer long term healthcare insurance (LTHI)  because it is not a profitable Read More

Don’t Look a Gift Horse in the Mouth

What are the estate planning implications of gifting property or money to your heirs? I often get this question during the seminars I give regarding estate planning and Medicaid eligibility. People want to know what happens if I give my heirs some money now? How does that effect my estate? How is it taxed? And is it a good idea? And what is the origin of that silly phrase “Don’t look a gift horse in the Read More

Dead Men Tell No Lies – Nor Where Everything is Located

Joyce Wadler, a brilliant humorist who writes the “I Was Misinformed” column for the New York Times, recently penned an essay titled “The Sex Toys in the Attic” in which she suggests that in addition to designating someone to make medical decisions for you if you are incapacitated, we should also identify an “Eradicator” to come into our home after we die and remove all of the embarrassing items less they be found by Read More