Search found 2866 matches

by bsteiner
Tue Nov 21, 2017 10:32 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: The valet smashed my Tesla into a brick wall!
Replies: 102
Views: 10258

Re: The valet smashed my Tesla into a brick wall!

... Legally, there are two things that can happen when you give your keys to someone else: -Care, Custody, and Control: This means that the individual/organization taking possession of the car is completely responsible for anything that happens to it or by it. -Priveleged Use: Aside from intentiona...
by bsteiner
Tue Nov 21, 2017 10:16 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Multiple Grantor Trusts - funding and tax issues - whose SS# to use ?
Replies: 4
Views: 230

Re: Multiple Grantor Trusts - funding and tax issues - whose SS# to use ?

Among the issues to consider: 1. Each time there's a contribution you'll have to recalculate the percentage of the trust attributable to each grantor. 2. There may be different state income tax treatment for the portions attributable to each grantor. 3. There may be different GST status (taxable or ...
by bsteiner
Tue Nov 21, 2017 9:21 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Variable Annuity - Time to Surrender ?
Replies: 27
Views: 1110

Re: Variable Annuity - Time to Surrender ?

... IMO, it should be illegal to sell someone a high-cost tax-deferred annuity inside an already tax-deferred product. Is it worse in an IRA than in a taxable account? In a taxable account, you get the benefit of tax deferral at the cost of converting your qualified dividends and capital gains to o...
by bsteiner
Tue Nov 21, 2017 6:35 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Pay capital gains now, avoid ACA cliff later?
Replies: 7
Views: 622

Re: Pay capital gains now, avoid ACA cliff later?

Another choice might be Roth conversions in low tax brackets.
by bsteiner
Mon Nov 20, 2017 3:31 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: CPA
Replies: 7
Views: 624

Re: CPA

Agreed, it is has proven to be very difficult to find one to do this so far. I do not have a lawyer to handle estate planning as I was planning on using an online service (willing.com, tomorrow.me, doyourownwill.com or other, still researching) to handle it. I'm not familiar with any of these servi...
by bsteiner
Mon Nov 20, 2017 1:06 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: CPA
Replies: 7
Views: 624

Re: CPA

It may be hard to find an accountant familiar with this. The lawyer who handles your estate planning might be able to recommend one.
by bsteiner
Mon Nov 20, 2017 1:05 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Retire couple Roth Conversion Help
Replies: 14
Views: 972

Re: Retire couple Roth Conversion Help

You could create a spreadsheet, showing the result (how much money there would be) in each case, based on some reasonable assumptions, when your beneficiaries take their last required distribution. Or, given the benefits of the Roth conversion, you could simply convert up to the top of the 28% brack...
by bsteiner
Mon Nov 20, 2017 11:18 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Draft a will with legalzoom or other online legal help
Replies: 64
Views: 4321

Re: Draft a will with legalzoom or other online legal help

Keep in mind, though, that a will, when probated becomes public information. Attorneys always seem to make a big deal out of this. Seems old school to me. When I am dead, do I really care if people know what I owned? Lawyers generally don't mention this. I've only had two cases where clients were c...
by bsteiner
Mon Nov 20, 2017 9:32 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Uber for someone who knows only taxis
Replies: 81
Views: 3296

Re: Uber for someone who knows only taxis

I don't use taxis, Uber or car services very often since I live in the NJ suburbs and have a car, and work in NYC, take the train to work, and walk and take subways and buses in NYC. But occasionally I need a ride to or from the airport, or to or from a train station. I much prefer Uber to taxis or ...
by bsteiner
Sun Nov 19, 2017 11:50 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Largest holding in Powell’s (next Fed chairman) investment portfolio appears to be Vanguard Total Stock Market index fu
Replies: 9
Views: 1883

Re: Largest holding in Powell’s (next Fed chairman) investment portfolio appears to be Vanguard Total Stock Market index

.. The life insurance appears to be owned by trusts and could well be part if estate planning. For someone with his networth it would make sense to have whole life. ... Alternatively, the trustees could invest in low cost funds which over a long time would likely grow to more than the insurance pro...
by bsteiner
Sat Nov 18, 2017 6:04 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Asset allocation for 5% return
Replies: 65
Views: 4759

Re: Asset allocation for 5% return

There's a good chance that any reasonable asset allocation will average 5% over a long enough time. But it might not. If you don't want to take the chance that it won't, then instead of this, you could add a profit-sharing aspect to the 401(k) plan. A profit-sharing plan gives you flexibility as to ...
by bsteiner
Thu Nov 16, 2017 8:04 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Variable Annuity Help - Parent's finances
Replies: 46
Views: 1811

Re: Variable Annuity Help - Parent's finances

There's often no good solution to an investment type annuity. In exchange for 2.5% a year in fees, you get to convert your qualified dividends and capital gains into ordinary income.
by bsteiner
Thu Nov 16, 2017 2:29 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: question for cpa? state income tax when living / moving back and forth in CA and WA?
Replies: 17
Views: 1179

Re: question for cpa? state income tax when living / moving back and forth in CA and WA?

While not a primary source, this brochure from the California taxing authorities may provide some useful information: https://www.ftb.ca.gov/forms/2016/16_1031.pdf.
by bsteiner
Thu Nov 16, 2017 12:07 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: How unwise is it to move to a high-tax fiscally-shaky state? (Connecticut)
Replies: 50
Views: 3715

Re: How unwise is it to move to a high-tax fiscally-shaky state? (Connecticut)

... A significant consideration. In that UT at Austin is one of the best, and one of the best funded, state universities in America-- because UT has its own endowment from oil money, it's in a lot better shape than many (fine) state universities like Illinois and Wisconsin? But, then, getting into ...
by bsteiner
Wed Nov 15, 2017 9:49 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Draft a will with legalzoom or other online legal help
Replies: 64
Views: 4321

Re: Draft a will with legalzoom or other online legal help

I too am looking for an estate planning attorney in the state of Georgia. Please PM me if you have recommendations or other info. Sure. But right now I plan to read the book suggested above before talking to an estate planning attorney. I think the meeting will be more productive if I have some ide...
by bsteiner
Tue Nov 14, 2017 1:47 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: How to protect an elderly person?
Replies: 7
Views: 1203

Re: How to protect an elderly person?

If there's a predator on the scene, and there's someone the elderly person fully trusts, the elderly person could create a trust for his/her own benefit that he/she can't amend or revoke without the consent of the trustee(s). However, unless there's a specific predator on the scene, most people woul...
by bsteiner
Tue Nov 14, 2017 12:02 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Annuity Exit Strategy Help Requested: Wife’s ROTH IRA – Allianz 222 Fixed Index Annuity – Stay or go? How?
Replies: 24
Views: 1363

Re: Annuity Exit Strategy Help Requested: Wife’s ROTH IRA – Allianz 222 Fixed Index Annuity – Stay or go? How?

... have multiple deferred (income) indexed annuities with 3 years left on a 10 year surrender and the charges are still to steep so i re-evaluate every year. ... The surrender charges make up for some of the expenses that the insurance company would otherwise receive. So the surrender charges shou...
by bsteiner
Tue Nov 14, 2017 9:38 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Draft a will with legalzoom or other online legal help
Replies: 64
Views: 4321

Re: Draft a will with legalzoom or other online legal help

A nationally prominent trusts and estates lawyer, now retired, tried doing a Will for himself on LegalZoom (as a test, not to actually sign it). He said it was pretty good, though it didn't offer all of the choices that he would have wanted. So it may be a good solution for some people who have very...
by bsteiner
Mon Nov 13, 2017 12:57 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Getting a home mortgage without spouse?
Replies: 43
Views: 2615

Re: Getting a home mortgage without spouse?

My wife and I are planning to buy a home in the next several (let's say 1-4) years, planning to put 20% down. ... I just learned on this forum that one can get a home mortgage for a primary residence without one's spouse. Additionally, both names could be on the deed (this is essential as my wife i...
by bsteiner
Mon Nov 13, 2017 12:09 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Getting a home mortgage without spouse?
Replies: 43
Views: 2615

Re: Getting a home mortgage without spouse?

My wife and I are planning to buy a home in the next several (let's say 1-4) years, planning to put 20% down. ... I just learned on this forum that one can get a home mortgage for a primary residence without one's spouse. Additionally, both names could be on the deed (this is essential as my wife i...
by bsteiner
Mon Nov 13, 2017 10:32 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: IRA Rollover 1 per year rule
Replies: 14
Views: 1038

Re: IRA Rollover 1 per year rule

... I believe prior to 2015 you could do multiple rollovers so long as you never used the same IRA twice. You could in the sense that the IRS didn't seem to be aware that the statute said you couldn't, but the statute said you couldn't. Section 408(d)(3)(B) says (and for many years has said): This ...
by bsteiner
Mon Nov 13, 2017 10:28 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Metlaw - Hyatt Legal
Replies: 5
Views: 484

Re: Metlaw - Hyatt Legal

...I checked out "Beyond the Grave" from the library..interesting read so far. It's interesting, and it's popular here; and you got your money's worth from it. But it's geared to community property states, in particular California. It's not particularly tax-oriented, which may be fine for most peop...
by bsteiner
Sat Nov 11, 2017 10:23 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: IRA Rollover 1 per year rule
Replies: 14
Views: 1038

Re: IRA Rollover 1 per year rule

The one rollover within 12 months was in Section 408(d)(3) long before 2015.
by bsteiner
Sat Nov 11, 2017 7:27 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Bogleizing Widowed Mom's Portfolio (tax considerations)
Replies: 25
Views: 1697

Re: Bogleizing Widowed Mom's Portfolio (tax considerations)

There may not be any good solution to the annuity, but it might be worth looking at how best to deal with it.
by bsteiner
Thu Nov 09, 2017 1:31 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Vanguard Beneficiary Form Question (Child's Trust)
Replies: 8
Views: 397

Re: Vanguard Beneficiary Form Question (Child's Trust)

I was initially hoping this was a simple question with a simple solution, since I only have one child and one trust created under my will. I apologize if I really should be looking for an estate lawyer, but I was hoping there are plenty of DIY'ers and this is a fairly routine question? If not, plea...
by bsteiner
Thu Nov 09, 2017 11:46 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Vanguard Beneficiary Form Question (Child's Trust)
Replies: 8
Views: 397

Re: Vanguard Beneficiary Form Question (Child's Trust)

What if your daughter predeceases you?

We usually fill in "See attached rider" and then attach a rider with the specific provisions. In this case, that would include who would get the IRA if your daughter doesn't survive you.
by bsteiner
Tue Nov 07, 2017 9:21 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Virginia to New Jersey income tax
Replies: 20
Views: 2138

Re: Virginia to New Jersey income tax

You can calculate the income tax with whatever software you use to do your income tax returns, or you can have your accountant do it, or you can pull up the New Jersey income tax forms online and calculate it by hand. You can get an estimate of the sales tax from the instructions to the Federal inco...
by bsteiner
Mon Nov 06, 2017 6:48 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Wells Fargo the Custodian of Amex Employees 410k gave wrong advise now blaming me!
Replies: 12
Views: 2070

Re: Wells Fargo the Custodian of Amex Employees 410k gave wrong advise now blaming me!

... Wells Fargo (WF) the trustee of the 401 (k) in their response say that: • My employment ended on 09/06/2004 (But the company continued to pay life insurance till 2011). • In 2011 I had in plan Roth Rollover (conversion). I was never informed that Rollover/conversion will render me ineligible fo...
by bsteiner
Sun Nov 05, 2017 11:29 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Preparing for an Estate Plan update
Replies: 2
Views: 404

Re: Preparing for an Estate Plan update

In order to draft, the lawyer needs to know about the people, the assets, and your objectives. To that end, it would be helpful if you would consider (and put together where applicable): 1. People. The names and dates of birth (or approximate ages) of you and your spouse and daughter, and whoever wo...
by bsteiner
Fri Nov 03, 2017 1:31 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Foreign beneficiary on IRA options
Replies: 5
Views: 304

Re: Foreign beneficiary on IRA options

There are several issues involved: 1. Some financial institutions may not want to set up an inherited IRA for a nonresident alien. 2. The stretch is greater for a child than for a sibling. 3. The tax issue isn't so much the withholding, since it's generally a credit against the tax in the home count...
by bsteiner
Fri Nov 03, 2017 8:38 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: 529 and estate planning
Replies: 1
Views: 288

Re: 529 and estate planning

If you die before the 5 years, the unamortized portion is included in your estate. 529 plans don't work well for people with estates large enough to pay estate tax. The 529 plan contributions use your gift tax annual exclusion. You could instead make annual gifts to or in trust for the child or gran...
by bsteiner
Fri Nov 03, 2017 6:29 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Opening Joint Account on Vanguard
Replies: 2
Views: 427

Re: Opening Joint Account on Vanguard

You can live in a community property state and have separate property. For example, you could inherit money. You could move to a common law state (a non-community property state) and have community property. For example, you could earn money while living in California, which would be community prope...
by bsteiner
Thu Nov 02, 2017 8:52 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Is Probate Required if You Fail to Include Everything in Trust, and if so what's probated
Replies: 16
Views: 1642

Re: Is Probate Required if You Fail to Include Everything in Trust, and if so what's probated

I happened to run across this the other day. I think it kind of proves BSteiners point. http://www.willsandprobate.com/fees/probatefees.htm Unlike many of the links to lawyers' websites posted here, this one is from a reputable lawyer whom I know professionally from her contributions to the legal c...
by bsteiner
Thu Nov 02, 2017 6:52 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Is Probate Required if You Fail to Include Everything in Trust, and if so what's probated
Replies: 16
Views: 1642

Re: Is Probate Required if You Fail to Include Everything in Trust, and if so what's probated

I happened to run across this the other day. I think it kind of proves BSteiners point. http://www.willsandprobate.com/fees/probatefees.htm Unlike many of the links to lawyers' websites posted here, this one is from a reputable lawyer whom I know professionally from her contributions to the legal c...
by bsteiner
Thu Nov 02, 2017 4:46 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Is Probate Required if You Fail to Include Everything in Trust, and if so what's probated
Replies: 16
Views: 1642

Re: Is Probate Required if You Fail to Include Everything in Trust, and if so what's probated

You probate the Will, not the assets. Probating a Will involves filing the Will with the court together with a death certificate, some forms, and a check for the filing fee. It's not difficult in Texas, so most people in Texas have no need for a revocable trust. Texas also has a small estate procedu...
by bsteiner
Thu Nov 02, 2017 11:34 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Wells Fargo the Custodian of Amex Employees 410k gave wrong advise now blaming me!
Replies: 12
Views: 2070

Re: Wells Fargo the Custodian of Amex Employees 410k gave wrong advise now blaming me!

In addition to the points Michael Kitces makes, an additional benefit of the rollover in some cases is that there is no longer an income cap on eligibility to convert to a Roth, which will often add substantial value. Another possibility might be to apply for a private letter ruling waiving the 60-...
by bsteiner
Thu Nov 02, 2017 11:11 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Estate Planning/Special Needs Trusts/Other issues
Replies: 24
Views: 1253

Re: Estate Planning/Special Needs Trusts/Other issues

... Currently, there is no special needs trusts immediately set up under our current estate plan. Under the current revocable living trust, there is a revocable trust for each child, and each of those trusts transform into a special needs trust if that child becomes special needs, it will become a ...
by bsteiner
Thu Nov 02, 2017 8:35 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Estate Planning/Special Needs Trusts/Other issues
Replies: 24
Views: 1253

Re: Estate Planning/Special Needs Trusts/Other issues

... Currently, there is no special needs trusts immediately set up under our current estate plan. Under the current revocable living trust, there is a revocable trust for each child, and each of those trusts transform into a special needs trust if that child becomes special needs, it will become a ...
by bsteiner
Thu Nov 02, 2017 7:59 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Wells Fargo the Custodian of Amex Employees 410k gave wrong advise now blaming me!
Replies: 12
Views: 2070

Re: Wells Fargo the Custodian of Amex Employees 410k gave wrong advise now blaming me!

In addition to the points Michael Kitces makes, an additional benefit of the rollover in some cases is that there is no longer an income cap on eligibility to convert to a Roth, which will often add substantial value. Another possibility might be to apply for a private letter ruling waiving the 60-d...
by bsteiner
Wed Nov 01, 2017 6:13 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Estate Planning/Special Needs Trusts/Other issues
Replies: 24
Views: 1253

Re: Estate Planning/Special Needs Trusts/Other issues

... I'm not convinced while we (wife and I) are alive there is even a need for a special needs trust. Special needs CFP says there is, but has been unable to articulate to me why, other than generic statements about pitfalls that can lead you to lose government benefits and "what works for most peo...
by bsteiner
Wed Nov 01, 2017 5:01 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Estate Planning/Special Needs Trusts/Other issues
Replies: 24
Views: 1253

Re: Estate Planning/Special Needs Trusts/Other issues

... I’ll do some research on “entitlement”. I’m still not grasping what this means. ... In this context, it means the beneficiary is entitled to money from the trust. In other words, the trustees don't have discretion to say no. If the trustee says no, the beneficiary can go to court and get the co...
by bsteiner
Wed Nov 01, 2017 4:16 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Estate Planning/Special Needs Trusts/Other issues
Replies: 24
Views: 1253

Re: Estate Planning/Special Needs Trusts/Other issues

... When you say "Assuming the child has no entitlement", I'm not sure what that means. ... The special needs CFP indicated our current plan "has holes" and in its current form may endanger my son's ability to get govt benefits he may otherwise be eligible for. He wasn't really specific when I aske...
by bsteiner
Wed Nov 01, 2017 1:49 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Estate Planning/Special Needs Trusts/Other issues
Replies: 24
Views: 1253

Re: Estate Planning/Special Needs Trusts/Other issues

I think you (or they) are making this more complicated than it is. First of all, thanks for replying. Over the last few days I have been reading a lot of your old posts, just to become more up to speed on these issues. It has been a great help, and we really appreciate you sharing your expertise. Y...
by bsteiner
Wed Nov 01, 2017 8:06 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Estate Planning/Special Needs Trusts/Other issues
Replies: 24
Views: 1253

Re: Estate Planning/Special Needs Trusts/Other issues

I think you (or they) are making this more complicated than it is. The trust for a child with special needs is very similar to the trust for the child without special needs. The main difference is that, depending on the nature of the child's disability, the child with special needs will likely have ...
by bsteiner
Tue Oct 31, 2017 8:06 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Will / Trust attorney fees -- how much? (quoted $2000-3000)
Replies: 35
Views: 4011

Re: Will / Trust attorney fees -- how much? (quoted $2000-3000)

Just to close the loop on this thread. We had wills and trusts (flexible that don't mandate or limit distributions, 1/2 of assets transferred to children at age 25 and the rest at age 30), POA, Advance directives completed for a total of $1500 - $1600. I also found out that we live in a state with ...
by bsteiner
Mon Oct 30, 2017 3:18 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: How to choose an estate lawyer
Replies: 20
Views: 1466

Re: How to chose an estate lawyer

I've heard that many of the best are members of the American Academy of Estate Planning Attorneys ... That, too, is a red flag. It's's one of three very similar groups that market drafting software to lawyers. bsteiner , Besides the American Academy of Estate Planning Attorneys (AAEPA) and American...
by bsteiner
Mon Oct 30, 2017 11:13 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: How to choose an estate lawyer
Replies: 20
Views: 1466

Re: How to choose an estate lawyer

dm200 wrote:
Mon Oct 30, 2017 9:23 am
...
4. Can you review a draft before being finalized?
...
If the answer to that is no, that's not just a red flag, it's a parade of red flags.
by bsteiner
Mon Oct 30, 2017 10:08 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: How to choose an estate lawyer
Replies: 20
Views: 1466

Re: How to chose an estate lawyer

I've heard that many of the best are members of the American Academy of Estate Planning Attorneys. These lawyers have more continuing ed than the states require for their lawyers. If one of them runs into a situation where they themselves have questions, they can talk to the other members for advic...
by bsteiner
Mon Oct 30, 2017 8:12 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Thomas Walters Estate Planning
Replies: 1
Views: 387

Re: Thomas Walters Estate Planning

I'm not familiar with them, since they're a small firm and not in my area). Their websites don't include their bios. You might look online to see if you can find their bios. You might also check their ratings on martindale.com. It's peer reviewed and there's no grade inflation -- most of the lawyers...
by bsteiner
Mon Oct 30, 2017 8:05 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: How to choose an estate lawyer
Replies: 20
Views: 1466

Re: How to chose an estate lawyer

Find a bunch that's near to you. Read the reviews online. Make free initial consultation appointments with each. ... There is a strong "sell" element for some. Fancy binders. Colorful dividers. ... Location isn't particularly important. We have clients all over the country and some outside the coun...