Estate Planning

After distributing the final income amounts, paying the last expenses, and filing the final tax returns it is time to file the final accounting. We share some tips for trustees to consider when doing so. What is the difference between probate and non-probate? Completing a non-probate final accounting is similar to probate accounting. According to The Balance, probate assets are assets held in the decedent’s name alone on his date of death or which may be payable to his estate. This probate process also involves the court to determine how a person’s assets pass to his heirs or beneficiaries…
This edition of “What’s Trending in Life Insurance” covers stories from Forbes, BusinessWire, and Fitch Ratings. Who Should Have Survivorship Life Insurance? Forbes recently came out with an article regarding survivorship life insurance plans, and how they may work well for some people’s unique needs. Survivorship life insurance is essentially one policy, covering the life of two people. It pays at the passing of the second person. Whatever happens, the survivor in the plan will continue to be protected by the policy for their lifetime.  The article suggests it’s a good alternative for both special needs planning as well as…
As National Life Insurance Awareness Month comes to an end, we’ve seen an upsurge of articles relating to what life insurance is, why you should have it, and what type of policy is best. One common theme, however, is that all this content is centered around the acquisition of a new policy. Now, getting a new policy isn’t a bad thing, but if I was in charge of National Life Insurance Awareness Month, I would want to make the point that current policies are often of even more value than acquiring new ones. Here’s why: Problem 70 % of the…
When it comes to life insurance, the word “guarantee” may have different meanings. The first question that should be asked? “Is the guarantee conditional or unconditional?” Here’s why: Problem There’s hardly ever a problem when a policy has unconditional guarantees. “If you pay this premium, we will pay this death benefit to your age 120” is an example of an unconditional guarantee. In almost every problem case we review, everyone assumed the policy did indeed have that level of guarantee. They missed the “if” in the contract. IF it performs at a certain level. IF we don’t raise our fees……
This week’s edition of “What’s Trending in Life Insurance” covers a lawsuit against State Farm, COVID-19, and the current state of the industry. Read below to learn more: DFR reaches $230,000 settlement with State Farm The Vermont Department of Financial Regulation (DFR) recently settled a case with life insurance provider State Farm. The lawsuit, filed as a result of alleged underpayments from State Farm, accused the company of improperly managing their death benefit payout. An estimated 500 beneficiaries weren’t paid in the full amount that they were supposed to according to the policyholders’ plans. In the settlement agreement, State Farm…