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Palermo: Estate Planning

The AARP Crash Course in Estate Planning,
The Essential Guide to Wills, Trusts and Your Personal Legacy
Foreword by Ric Edelman, author of The Truth About Money
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. . . Published January, 2005. Available for $14.95 through this Web site and in stores. In this book, I have re-written and updated my original “Crash Course,” which has been online since 1996.

The book greatly expands coverage of the most important topics found on this Web site. Based on feedback from thousands of visitors, I have added coverage of the questions and issues YOU have raised over eight years, using plenty of practical examples and real-life anecdotes.

Here are some of the questions and topics you’ll learn about:

What Is Estate Planning?
Why Is Estate Planning Important for You?
Do You Need a Lawyer?
When Should You Review Your Estate Plan?

Part One
Understanding Estate-Planning Basics

Chapter One – Different Kinds of Property and the Law
Probate Property
Nonprobate Property
Intestacy: Where There’s No Will, There’s Still a Way
What Is Your Estate?
Community Property
Life Estates

Chapter Two – Wills and Trusts: Choosing the Right Tools to Make Your Estate Plan Work
Determine Your Needs
Wills and Trusts Can Work Together
Will Basics
Trust Basics
Comparing Wills and Living Trusts
Trust Scams

Chapter Three – Beyond Wills and Trusts: The Rest of the Estate Planner’s Toolkit
Durable Power of Attorney
Guardianship and Conservatorship
Living Wills and Other Advance Medical Directives
The Ethical Will
Prenuptial Agreements

Chapter Four – The Ins and Outs of the Probate Process
The Big Picture
Duties of the Executor

Chapter Five – Who’s in Charge Here? Choosing Your Executor or Trustee
Naming a Family Member as Your Executor or Trustee
Banks and Other Institutional Trustees
The Business Side of the Executor’s and Trustee’s Jobs
The Human and Practical Side of the Trustee’s Responsibilities

Chapter Six – Using a Trust Protector: Someone to Trust Besides Your Trustee
Introduction to the Role and Its Duties
Powers to Give the Protector
Who Should Be Your Trust Protector? Defining and Limiting the Trust Protector’s Powers
Don’t Forget the Trustee
Helping Your Trustee and Trust Protector Do Their Jobs

Chapter Seven – When Things Go Wrong
Executor Misconduct
Challenging a Will
Problems with Trusts and Trustees

Chapter Eight – Preparing for the Tax Man
Your Taxable Estate
How the Federal Gift and Estate Tax Works
The Generation-Skipping Transfer (GST) Tax
A Simple Living Trust Will Not Save Any Tax
Minimizing Uncle Sam’s Share

Part Two
Applying the Basics: Estate-Planning Tools for Common Life Situations

Chapter Nine – Providing for Young Children
Some Useful Trust Provisions
A Common Dilemma
Some “What Ifs” to Consider in Setting Up a Trust for Minor Children

Chapter Ten – Planning for Children with Disabilities
What Is the Supplemental Needs Trust (SNT)?
The Two Types of Supplemental Needs Trusts
What the Supplemental Needs Trust Can Provide
Other Planning Issues

Chapter Eleven – Mom and Dad’s Basic Estate Tax Planning
Say “I Do” to the Marital Deduction and Bypass (A/B) Trust
How the A/B Trust Works while Both Spouses Are Alive
After the Death of the First Spouse

Chapter Twelve – Subsequent Marriages: Providing for a Spouse without Giving Away the Family Fortune
Using the Estate Tax Marital Deduction
The Qualified Terminable Interest in Property (QTIP) Trust

Chapter Thirteen – Charitable Donations: Gifts that Give Back
The Charitable Gift Annuity
The Charitable Remainder Trust
The Charitable Lead Trust

Part Three
Preserving Your Estate: Keeping Creditors, Spendthrifts, and the Tax Man at Bay

Chapter Fourteen – An Introduction to Asset Protection Planning
Basic Approaches to Asset Protection
A Survey of the Law and Key Principles

Chapter Fifteen – Protecting Your Wealth with an Irrevocable Life Insurance Trust
How the Irrevocable Life Insurance Trust (ILIT) Works
ILITs and the Estate Tax
ILITs and the Gift Tax
A Final Word about ILITs

Chapter Sixteen – Protecting Beneficiaries from Themselves
Spendthrift Trust Provisions
Incentive Trust Provisions

Chapter Seventeen – Minding Your Business: Protecting Investment Interests
Some Background in Partnership Law
Introduction to the Family Limited Partnership
The Limited Liability Company
How Family Limited Partnerships Work
Other Benefits of Family Limited Partnerships
Some Final Asset Protection Pointers

Part Four
Estate Planning with Retirement Assets

Chapter Eighteen – Distribution Solutions for Beneficiaries
Taking Distributions after the Account Owner Dies
New Rules Increase Flexibility

Chapter Nineteen – Using Trusts as Designated Beneficiaries
Requirements of the Trust Document
The QTIP Trust as Beneficiary
Some Points on Estate Planning with Retirement Assets

Appendix – A List of Executor Duties and Tasks of Probate


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