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Life insurance trusts can be critical for special needs children

Families with special needs children are aware of the extra care and consideration that their children require. When the time comes to consider estate planning, families need to focus on structuring a plan that will ensure that the special needs child will be cared for throughout his or her life. Life insurance trusts are among the best options for Philadelphia families who are concerned about continuing care needs.

Avoiding conflict surrounding trusts and inheritance

Many Philadelphia residents will spend a great deal of time and effort constructing their estate plans. The end results will be comprehensive plans that makes use of wills, trusts and other vehicles to facilitate the transfer of wealth to their intended heirs. Unfortunately, far too many people fail to adequately communicate with their loved ones about those plans, which can lead to a great deal of tension and strife amongst surviving family members.

Benefits of trusts versus a simple will

Virtually all Philadelphia residents are aware that they need to put their final wishes into writing. For many, the vehicle that they choose to complete this important step is a simple will. While wills do provide a basic level of estate planning coverage, there are other options that offer many more benefits. Often, trusts are a far better fit for an individual's needs, and they are not much more complicated to create than a simple will.

Trusts can play a role in nursing care planning

When considering various estate planning options, most Pennsylvania families focus on how to pass assets to loved ones in a smooth and seamless manner. Many families fail to give proper consideration to the chance that a surviving spouse could end up requiring residential medical care, which can complicate matters of inheritance. In some cases, the cost of such care can completely deplete an inheritance, leaving little or nothing for children or grandchildren. When considering this estate planning matter, families should look into whether trusts can be a good fit for their planning needs.

Is it possible to refuse a bequest or inheritance? p2

We are circling back to our March 31 post and the discussion of turning down gifts, bequests or inheritances. As we said, it is possible. There is no law that says you must accept a gift, that you must accept your deceased uncle's bequest of a painting you suspect was looted by the Nazis or the trust fund set up by your robber baron great-grandfather.

How can you or your heirs benefit from a trust?

Whether you live in Pennsylvania or another part of the country, you probably want to put your assets and money to the best use, both while you are living and after your death. Trusts, often overlooked, are one of the best ways to not only protect your assets, but to take advantage of benefits, such as tax breaks.

The usefulness of trusts in estate planning

Exemptions for federal estate taxes continue to rise to the point that they are not an issue for most middle-to-upper-income people who plan to leave money to their heirs. Nevertheless, federal estate tax still represents a very big problem for wealthy Pennsylvania residents. The state of Pennsylvania also has what is called an inheritance tax that heirs must pay when they receive money and assets from a deceased benefactor. Traditionally, trusts have been used to help individuals avoid such taxes, and trusts are still very useful today -- not just for avoiding estate and inheritance taxes, either.

Do you know how a special needs trust could help your child?

Do you have a special needs child? A child with a disability that will keep him from managing day-to-day living? You know you are not alone. Looking ahead, though, you worry that your child will be alone and unable to care for himself. Whether the disability is congenital or is the result of an accident, all you know is that you will not be around forever to look after him.

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Larmore Scarlett LLP

Larmore Scarlett, LLP
123 E. Linden Street,
P.O. Box 384

Kennett Square, PA 19348

Phone: 610-444-3737
Fax: 610-444-9532
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