Leaving Assets to Minors

Leaving Assets to Minors - herzog law firm estate planning

Most people want to leave an inheritance to their children and grandchildren.  In some cases, parents may choose to skip a generation and leave money and other assets directly to grandchildren.  Leaving assets to minor children (those under the age of 18) is commonly done by naming them beneficiaries on bank accounts, IRA’s, or other retirement funds, insurance policies, or by designating the grandchildren as beneficiaries in a will.

Pitfalls of Leaving Assets to Minors

Minors not allowed to own assets.  When naming a minor as a beneficiary, it is a guarantee that there will be a court proceeding after you pass away.  The judge will appoint an attorney to represent each minor child named as a beneficiary.  Each lawyer gets paid from the dollar value of the assets going to the child they represent.  Probate court can be a costly and time consuming process and should be avoided whenever possible. Then, when the children turn 18, they will receive their inheritance in one lump sum.  A high school senior receiving a check for the size of your estate could be an opportunity to grow up and make dreams a reality, or an opportunity to make less than ideal choices.

Creating a Trust for Minors

The best way to leave money to minor children is by creating a trust, which the minors are beneficiaries of.  Trusts avoid probate and save a lot of time and effort while ensuring your wishes are followed.  When you create a trust, you can spell out certain requirements and provisions that must be met.  For example, instead of releasing one lump sum, you can do it in stages.

When you create the trust, you appoint trustees, who will manage the money for the minor children until they reach an age that you specify – it can be 25 or even 35.  Once the minors are of age, the assets become theirs to spend, or released as per your specifications.  Prior to that, the trustees can be directed to use the trust to pay for education, health care, and other items of support at your choosing.

Even modest estates can benefit from looking into creating a trust.  It’s not the size of your bank account that determines if a trust is useful. Setting up your estate correctly can help to ensure your children & grandchildren receive even more money and assets instead of it going towards probate and legal fees after your death.

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Aging in Place by Jane-Marie Schaffer

aging in place by jane-marie schaffer

Click here to download the presentation

Long-Term Care Planning

Long term care planning is planning for how we will live our lives as we age – do we want to live at home with help or do we want to move to a facility that will provide help to us.

87% of adults age 65 and older want to stay in their current home and community as they age.

Helping Seniors Age in place

► Where do you want to live?
► Who will provide care?
► How to pay for it?
► What financial resources are available?


Desire for social interaction?

  •  Friends & Family
  • Community Groups/Senior Centers
  • Educational Programs
  • Living Communities

Community Supports & Services

  • Meals on Wheels
  • Household Management/Bill Paying
  • Respite Care/Adult Day Programs

Medicare – What Does it Cover?

  • Hospital Stays
  • Short term stay in nursing home following a hospitalization
  • First 20 days, Medicare pays 100%
  • Days 21-100, Co-Pay of $176.00
  • No coverage after 100 days
  • Limited Home Care Coverage
  • No coverage for custodial care at home
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Click to download the Wills vs Trusts – Presentation

Will vs. Trust –
Which is Right for Your Family?

Use our Estate Planning Questionnaire

  • Total Estate Assets
  • Non-Probate Assets

Determine Beneficiaries

  • Family Members, Non-Family Members, Charities, Pets, Minors, Persons with Special Needs
  • Any Substance Abuse Problems, Gambling, Debt Plan for Incapacity
  • Determine Fiduciaries
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How Not to Pay for Services

Understanding and Navigating the Long Term Care Frontier

Cost of Caregiving

Area Averages:

  • Nursing Home: $420.00- $570.00 per day (12-
  • Assisted Living: 3000-8000 per month
  • Home Care average $30/hr (13-18K per month)

Steps to take

  • Developing a Care Plan
  • Community-Based Services
  • In-Home Assistance

Click here to download a PDF of the presentation

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How to Plan your Estate

Just over 1/3 of Americans have a will, and fewer have any estate planning documents at all. An often overlooked area of estate planning is loss of capacity. The reality is that anyone, at any age, can be left incapacitated without warning. Significant others do not have the authority to make health care, end of life or burial decisions for you without proper documentation.

You can download a PDF of this presentation by clicking this link.

Presented by Debra Verni, Esq

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Wills vs Trusts Webinar

Wills vs Trusts


Approximately 55% of American adults do not have a Will

  • 57% said they “just haven’t gotten around to making one”
  • 22% felt that making a will wasn’t urgent
  • 17% didn’t think they needed a will
  • 14% don’t have a will because they don’t want to think about death

What is a Trust?

  • A Trust is a contract or agreement between a Grantor and Trustee to hold assets (money, real property, objects, etc.) for the benefit of a beneficiary
  • Testamentary Trusts, which are inside your will and go into effect when you die
  • Living Trusts, which take effect during your lifetime
  • Many different types of Trusts depending on your needs and goals
  • Privacy

Download the Wills vs. Trusts 2020 Power Point Slides

Learn More about Harry Miller

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Elder Law and Estate Planning Basics

Elder Law and Estate Planning Basics

What is Elder Law?

  • Choosing someone to help you make health care decisions
  • Getting help managing your finances
  • Choosing someone to manage your affairs if you become incapacitated
  • Putting an estate plan into place
  • Planning ahead for your long term care needs

Everybody Needs Long Term Care

  • The number of seniors needing long term care is growing as Baby Boomers turn age 65
  • There are currently 44.7 million people in America age 65 and older, representing 14.1% of the US population, and that number is expected to double by 2060
  • Currently an estimated 12 million people need long term care, and that is estimated to grow to 27 million people by 2050
  • The lifetime probability of becoming disabled is 68% for people age 65 or older

How Do I Plan for Long Term Care?

  • Where do you want to receive services?
  • Who will provide your care?
  • How will you pay for your care?

Long Term Care Costs

Home Care

  • unpaid home care – spouse, children, family, friends
  • paid home health aides – average cost $24 per hour, costs vary depending on number of hours you need

Assisted Living

  • costs can range from $4,000 per month to $7,000 per month, depending on the level of assistance you need

Nursing Home

  • average cost is $15,000 per month

Download the Elder Law and Estate Planning Basics presentation PDF files

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Client Appreciation Webinar

Below you will find the webinar in its entirety, as well as seperate videos for each of the major information segments.

Thank you to all who attended.  If you have additional questions, please contact our firm for a free consultation.

Community Medicaid Updates

CARES Act and the Secure Act

How Medicaid Trusts Work

Client Appreciation Webinar in its entirety

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Between a Long-Term Care Rock and a Hard Place

Between a Long-Term Care Rock and a Hard Place

In mid-March, my mother called me from the hospital.  My father was sick. Fever, chills, cough, general
weakness and other flu-like symptoms. As it turned out, it was the wrong month of the wrong year to have “flu-like symptoms.” Despite being convinced that he had COVID-19, the hospital could do little more than give him a
swab test and send him home.

For the next four-and-a-half weeks, my father and mother stayed on separate sides of their two-bedroom apartment.
My mother, who was dealing with her own symptoms, was able to tend to my father’s needs, and at times, things got scary.

Thankfully, all is now well.

Read the entire article on page 47 of Capital Region Living or download a copy here.

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Understanding and Navigating the Long Term Care Frontier. Kym Hance, CMC

How not to pay for services: Understanding and Navigating the Long Term Care Frontier. Presented by Kym Hance, CMC, Aging Life Care Manager and David Kubikian, Esq for Herzog Law Firm

Learn more about David Kubikian, Esq

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