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The KRASA LAW, Inc. Estate Planning Blog

Friday, January 6, 2017

Explaining Lawyers' Explanations



Lawyers are not known for their clear and understandable explanations of legal issues. In fact, the language most lawyers use in attempting to communicate legal concepts is often referred to as “legalese.” Merriam Webster defines “legalese” as “the language used by lawyers that is difficult for most people to understand,” or more precisely, “legal jargon.” Although legal language is important to communicate complex legal concepts and principles, such language is not easily understood by laypersons. To paraphrase Lord Byron’s Don Juan, most people wish lawyers would “explain their explanations.
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Friday, December 23, 2016

The Most Important Gift



At its core, estate planning is not something that you necessarily do for yourself.  Instead, estate planning is something that you do for the people you love.  Often the primary motivating factor for clients to engage in their estate planning is the unpleasant experience of administering a decedent’s estate that was not addressed properly.  In addition to having to grieve your loss, a poorly execute estate plan – or no estate plan at all – can leave your loved ones mired in years of unnecessary confusion, delay, expense, and frustration.  Conversely, a compressive, up-to-date, and detailed estate plan will serve as one of the best gifts you can make to those you care about.
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Friday, December 9, 2016

The Distribution Trustee: How Bifurcating Trustee Duties Can Provide Control and Protection


 
A paramount goal of estate planning is to protect and preserve your hard earned assets for your loved ones.  Most basic estate planning focuses upon specifying the beneficiaries of your choice, mitigating taxes, and providing an efficient method for the transfer of assets upon death without the unnecessary delay and expense of a formal probate.  A revocable living trust is often the best vehicle for accomplishing these goals.  However, most basic estate plans focus only on the transfer process and do not focus on providing continued protection after your beneficiaries have received their inheritances.    

To provide continued protection for your beneficiaries, you might want to consider providing an “in-trust” inheritance.
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Tuesday, November 22, 2016

Questions to Ask When Considering a Retirement Home



When I was a kid, one of the most popular sitcoms was Golden Girls.  I often watched it with my grandmother.  On a typical Saturday night in the 1980’s, my grandmother in her 70s, and I, an elementary school child, would laugh together at Rose’s St. Olaf stories, Blanche’s exploits, Dorothy’s bad luck, and Sophia’s witty yet insightful comments.  In college, a few of my friends and I agreed that when we were ready for retirement, we would get a house together and be the “Golden Boys.
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Tuesday, November 1, 2016

Stretching Across Generations


Last weekend, the Chicago Cubs won the National League Pennant for the first time since 1945.  They have an opportunity to win their first World Series since 1908.  Even though I grew up on the Monterey Peninsula, I always like the Cubbies.  Wrigley Field, with its ivy-covered brick and history, the Billy Goat Curse, and the fact that they hadn’t won in a long time appealed to me.  

Additionally, a lot of 1980’s pop culture that I consumed as a kid featured the Cubs.
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Monday, October 31, 2016

Kyle A. Krasa wins "Golden Pine Cone" Award


 

Local attorney Kyle A. Krasa was the winner of a "Golden Pine Cone" award from The Carmel Pine Cone for "Best Estate Planning Attorney." 

Each year, readers of the venerable publication vote on the best businesses and services in the area.  This was the second time that Krasa received the award.  "I know that this honor is because of my clients, my employees, my colleagues, and members of the community.
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Monday, October 3, 2016

Your Estate Plan is Private - Should it Be?



An estate plan consists of a series of decisions.  These decisions include whom to name as your financial agents in the event of incapacity or death, whom to name as your health care agents in the event of your incapacity, who should receive your assets upon death, and whether and to what extent you should place conditions or restrictions on inheritance.  

These decisions necessarily involve inclusion and exclusion: you will favor certain people at the expense of others.  There is no duty to disclose these decisions to the parties involved in your estate plan, such as your named agents or your beneficiaries, until you pass away.  Upon death, your closest family members and those who are named in your estate plan will learn of your decisions.
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Monday, September 19, 2016

LLC's in a Nutshell


Limited Liability Companies, or “LLC’s,” are popular legal structures for maintaining investment assets or operating a business. Although they involve additional administration and specific formalities, they can also provide many benefits.   

Establishing an LLC

One of the first considerations in establishing an LLC is choosing the right jurisdiction.  LLC’s may be formed in any of the 50 states regardless of where the owners, or “members,” reside or where the LLC is to conduct business.  The home state of the members might not necessarily be the optimum jurisdiction for forming an LLC.
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Tuesday, September 6, 2016

Off the Record



Whenever a celebrity dies, there is great public interest in how the estate will be distributed. The details can be fascinating, especially when the celebrity fails to properly address his or her estate planning. For example, reports indicate that Prince did not have an estate plan because he did not trust attorneys. Not only will the settlement of his estate unnecessarily incur extremely expensive attorney fees and executor fees, but there is controversy regarding the proper heirs of his estate.  

Celebrities make estate planning mistakes so often that there seem to be unlimited stories warning about the consequences of failing to properly address estate planning.


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Wednesday, August 31, 2016

Maybellene - Why Can't You Be True?


The third week in August is “Car Week” on the Monterey Peninsula.  Dozens of various car events throughout the area lead up to the famous Pebble Beach Concours d’Elegance, “quite simply the finest exhibition of show cars on Earth, . . . an annual gathering of rare and antique automobiles, international automotive luminaries and motorcar enthusiasts from around the globe,” according to the event’s official website.
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Monday, August 8, 2016

Fixing a Broken Estate Plan



Estate planning is a fluid process.  What might be the perfect plan today could be outdated tomorrow due to changes in the law, changes in the size and nature of the estate, and changes in the personal circumstances of various family members or other beneficiaries.  This is why you should periodically review your estate plan to ensure that they continue to express your wishes in the most efficient manner possible.  A review also serves as a “proofread” to help identify any typos or other mistakes in the documents that should be addressed.   

In general, while you are living and have capacity, you are free to change your estate plan in any manner that you wish.


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KRASA LAW assists clients with Estate Planning, Elder Law, Pet Trusts, Asset Protection, Special Needs Planning and Probate / Estate Administration in Pacific Grove, CA(93950), Monterey (93944, 93940, 93943, 93942), Salinas (93901, 93905, 93906, 93907), Hollister (95023,95023) Pebble Beach (93953), Carmel By The Sea (93921), Seaside (93955) and Carmel (93923, 93922) in Monterey County and San Benito California.

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