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Category Archives: Estate Planning

AgeInPlace

Aging In Place Probably Means Remodeling Your Home Sooner Or Later

By Tobin O’Connor & Ewing |

One of the worst things about ringing in the new year is the realization that you are another year older, and another year has passed without you and your spouse talking openly with each other or with other family members about the fact that you are getting old.  Getting visits from your children and… Read More »

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Grinch

The Grinch’s Guide To The Annual Gift Tax Exclusion

By Tobin O’Connor & Ewing |

In 2020, financial stress, travel restrictions, and caution about exposure to rapidly surging COVID-19 variants put a damper on many families’ holiday cheer.  This year, some of those families are determined to have a fabulous celebration, but some realized, during quiet times at home and joyous exchanges of holiday greetings over Zoom, that going… Read More »

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EstPlan20

Your Contact List Can Make Or Break Your Estate Plan

By Tobin O’Connor & Ewing |

Even if you are the very antithesis of a procrastinator, the kind of person who files their tax returns in February and finishes their Christmas shopping before Thanksgiving, updating contact information can feel like a daunting task.  Notifying the DMV and your health insurance company of your new address after moving into a new… Read More »

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Probate5

Widow Of Bakery Tycoon Withdraws Lawsuit Against Stepchildren Over His Estate

By Tobin O’Connor & Ewing |

Almost everyone in Maryland has eaten a piece of bread or a sandwich bun that came from a bakery belonging to John Paterakis.  His company, H&S Bakery, started out as a small family business, but by the time he died, his bakeries were producing two million hamburger buns per day for McDonald’s alone, not… Read More »

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Retire

Preparing For Retirement Means Putting Away The Trappings Of Your Working Life

By Tobin O’Connor & Ewing |

It feels liberating to get rid of something because you have happily moved onto another stage of your life.  Donating the crib from your children’s bedroom to the Goodwill because your youngest child is old enough for a big kid bed feels like a victory, and so does trashing your shower caddy and mesh… Read More »

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EstPlan10

Maryland Just Made It Harder For Married People To Find Loopholes By Which To Disinherit Their Spouses

By Tobin O’Connor & Ewing |

Marriage has always been an economic partnership, but recent generations have seen more variation from one couple to another in terms of how married couples join their finances or keep them separate.  One would think that getting married late in life would mean having enough life experience to have an honest discussion about which… Read More »

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CoupleEstate

Is “Early Inheritance” A Good Estate Planning Strategy?

By Tobin O’Connor & Ewing |

Estate planning lawyers and financial planners may have given you the counterintuitive advice of spending or giving away as much of your assets as you can while you are alive.  Yes, you need to save enough to provide for your own needs in your old age, but what do you do if you could… Read More »

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EstPlan22

How To Tank Your Estate Plan: Parent PLUS Loans

By Tobin O’Connor & Ewing |

Not all parents take the same approach to estate planning, but everyone who has children takes their children into account when developing an estate plan.  Some live well below their means while dreaming of leaving a generous inheritance for their children and grandchildren.  Others maximize their annual gift tax exclusion and set up revocable… Read More »

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InheritanceLaw

The Inheritance Rights Of Former Spouses

By Tobin O’Connor & Ewing |

With only one exception, you, as the testator of your will, have the final decision about how much, if anything, each of your relatives will inherit from your estate.  Only your spouse has the right to claim an elective share of your estate, thus overriding the provisions of your will.  If the decedent has… Read More »

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Probate4

Are Your Estranged Relatives Filing Objections In Probate Just To Mess With You?

By Tobin O’Connor & Ewing |

Sometimes probate disputes are just a proxy for long-standing grudges between estranged family members.  Genuine disagreements about the validity or intent of the deceased person’s will or other aspects of the deceased person’s estate plan can get mixed up with anger and grief over the decedent’s death and final illness.  The law requires the… Read More »

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