Thomas H. Sullivan
Attorney at Law
Latest Blog Posts
Estate Planning Considerations for Benefits Open Enrollment
Posted on: October 16th, 2018
The fall, generally late-October or early-November, is the time when employers send out summaries of employee benefits offered by the company and give employees the option to enroll in these benefits. These can generally include retirement plan options, health care, dental, vision, short and/or long-term disability, and life insurance coverage. Your employer may pay 100 percent of the premiums, split the costs with you, or you may have to pay all of the premiums yourself. Below are several considerations you should keep in mind once open enrollment begins....
Trusts - The Swiss Army Knife of Estate Planning
Posted on: October 9th, 2018
To the general public, a trust may seem like an advanced tool only for the wealthiest among us. But, the reality is that trusts are a foundational estate planning tool with a solid history for being highly effective in ensuring a person’s wishes are carried out. The process begins with the maker of a trust – commonly referred to as the trust maker, grantor, settlor, or trustor – transferring his or her ownership of certain assets to the trust. A trustee is then appointed to manage these assets for the beneficiary (or beneficiaries) of the trust. In a “standard” revocable living trust, you are the trust maker, the trustee, and the beneficiary while you are alive. Then your designated successor trustee and beneficiaries take over upon your passing....
The More You Know: Reverse Mortgages & Estate Planning
Posted on: October 3rd, 2018
You have likely seen several advertisements for reverse mortgages if you have spent any time watching television or surfing on the internet. The concept and sell is a simple one: as long as you own and live in your home, you can supplement your retirement income with a loan that you do not need to pay off. The trade-off when it comes to a reverse mortgage is that you are using your home’s equity to receive that extra retirement income. Even if a reverse mortgage is right for your circumstances, entering into a reverse mortgage is something that should be understood fully before signing any paperwork....
Big Life Changes Often Mean Big Estate Plan Changes
Posted on: September 30th, 2018
Many people who put together an estate plan do so when they start a family - assuming they put an estate plan together at all during their lifetime. While putting an estate plan together is a good thing to do, many people make few updates once the plan has been created, despite other key life events happening over the years. This is a major mistake that can place your hard-earned money and assets into a costly probate or into the wrong hands. To make sure you do not run into these issues and your wishes are followed in the event of your death or incapacity, below are nine life decisions or events that should get you thinking about updating -- or creating -- your estate plan right away....
5 Tips for Successfully Receiving an Inheritance
Posted on: September 27th, 2018
If you recently received an inheritance, or are expecting to receive one in the near future, it has likely triggered mixed emotions in you. You have lost a loved one and also experienced monetary gain. Studies show that a third of Americans who received an inheritance completely spent it within two years of receipt. Below are five practical steps for you to follow to maximize and protect your inheritance....
Why Joint Tenancy Should Not Be the Go-To Plan for Newlyweds
Posted on: September 25th, 2018
If you are recently married or have been married and are acquiring additional assets, know that you have options when it comes to how the property will be titled. And, although joint tenancy seems like an easy and convenient choice, it may not work as well as you would think....