A recently reported statistic may come as a shock to many Californians who think their estate planning bases are covered after executing a will. Around two-thirds of all Americans have not prepared a health care directive, according to a December 13, 2019 article written by a personal finance specialist at Forbes. The author noted the […]

In an ongoing segment on financial planning and advice, a recent article published by the Wall Street Journal highlighted the unique circumstances of a Paradise, CA couple and their family. The pair was seeking advice on a range of topics, including paying down their credit card debt, assessing their financial future, and implementing estate planning […]

A will is among the most important documents a person will ever sign, which is why far too many people believe it is best to tuck this instrument away for safekeeping after execution. Most assume that there is no need to pull a will out again until death. However, a San Francisco-based publisher of US […]

Though it just concluded its second season on July 21, 2019, HBO’s hit show “Big Little Lies” has already drawn critical acclaim as a crime drama that follows the lives of five women in Monterey, CA. One story arc features a character who loses custody of her twin sons to the mother of her recently […]

A six-month whirlwind engagement ended in a dream wedding for Guardians of the Galaxy actor Chris Pratt and bride Katherine Schwarzenegger, daughter of Maria Shriver and Arnold Schwarzenegger. Fox News covered the June 8, 2019 nuptials, including a ceremony and reception at the San Ysidro Ranch in Montecito, CA. The couple announced their engagement in […]

When Amazon founder Jeff Bezos and then-wife MacKenzie announced their plans to divorce in January 2019, many people assumed that a hostile, outrageously expensive legal process would follow. The couple had four children during their 25-year marriage, but skeptics predicted that the couple’s $37 billion marital estate would lead to hotly contested divorce proceedings. Naysayers […]

Couples divorcing in 2019 can no longer utilize a tax deduction for spousal support payments under the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act (TCJA). However, there are other strategies to take advantage of favorable tax treatment in divorce. A legal structure termed an “alimony trust” captures some key tax benefits. While also delivering other advantages to […]

Anyone who is engaging in estate planning in Sonoma County or elsewhere in California should be aware of newly proposed legislation that aims to introduce an estate tax in California. According to a news release from the office of Senator Scott Wiener (D-San Francisco), the proposed legislation is modeled on the federal estate tax. Importantly, it would lower exemption rate […]

Upon review of the case, a trial court determined that not only did the dissenting sibling have the right to request her share, but that termination of the trust was necessary. The court went so far as to require the immediate liquidation of the trust. As well as payment of all legal fees through the proceeds of the […]

In December of 2017, President Donald Trump signed the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act (TCJA) into law. This tax reform bill has brought sweeping changes, altering the federal tax code in a wide range of different ways. For those going through a divorce, the tax bill may have some unexpected implications. Beginning January 1st, 2019, […]

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