Estate Planning Round-Up July 2020

SECURE ACT: Clients who have IRA Trusts and have not yet had a review in 2020 should take the time to schedule an appointment to review their trust in light of the SECURE Act. In January 2020, the SECURE Act was signed into law, and it changed, among other things, how inherited IRAs work. If you have established an IRA Trust, or IRA planning in general is a concern, please schedule an appointment with me.

DIGITAL ASSETS: Pennsylvania’s governor is on the cusp of signing a digital assets for estates law into place. This will standardize the process for Executors and Trustees to access digital assets when someone passes away. If you have a heightened concern about ensuring certain digital assets are passed on, consider how to build that into your estate plan. For instance, if you are an avid social media user, some social media companies offer services such as designating a legacy contact. Consider taking advantage of these services.

PROBATE SERVICES: Probate for estates is being conducted virtually across Pennsylvania counties. Many counties require an attorney to be retained before probating an estate virtually. Our firm is equipped to help, so please contact me if you have any probate questions or concerns. 

PLANNING IN THE PANDEMIC: Our office encourages clients and prospective clients to put together an estate plan, or review an old estate plan and update where needed. Having well written, detailed and up-to-date powers of attorney are particularly important. Other issues recently I’ve seen are outdated wills that don’t take into account special needs beneficiaries and other practical issues that could leave your Executor in a lurch. Our office is conveniently scheduling Zoom video consultations, and we are offering in-person estate planning signings at our office.

TALK TO YOUR ADULT CHILDREN: Your adult children probably have not considered creating an estate plan of their own. But at minimum, they should have well-drafted powers of attorney so that if god-forbid they become incapacitated, they have someone of their choice to speak on their behalf. This includes college students. Our office can assist with these matters if your child has Pennsylvania residency.