Summary of changes to the MN Statutory Short Form Power of Attorney

June 19, 2013

Minnesota’s legislators have been busy working up new and exciting changes to Minnesota’s estate planning landscape. Perhaps less controversial and less exciting, (and, some would argue, more concrete) than the new Minnesota Gift Tax, this article will summarize some of the changes made to the Minnesota Statutory Short Form Power of Attorney document.  With its […]

Minnesota Gift Tax 2013

June 3, 2013

Last month, the Minnesota Legislature passed the Omnibus Tax Bill.  Erik Doerr wrote a great overview of the Tax Bill for Epilawg, check it out here.  My article below will focus on the new (or reinstated) Minnesota Gift Tax. The Minnesota Gift Tax law will operate similar to the Federal Gift Tax.  It includes an annual exclusion. […]

Do I need a Trust?

April 9, 2013

I field this question every day.  My response is always the same, it depends.  So, when should someone consider a Trust-based estate plan*?  Well, here are a few things to consider: Do you own property in another state? If so, a trust may be a good way to prevent the need for multiple probate proceedings. […]

a tax for more snow birds?

March 21, 2013

Governor Dayton recently proposed a budget that, among other things, may broaden the “snow bird” tax base. While those affected by the proposed legislation are most likely wealthy people who have second homes in warmer climates, the law would affect any individual who owns Minnesota real estate and spends more than 60 days in Minnesota […]

Obtaining A Clearance Certificate

March 7, 2013

In many posts, we have eluded to and discussed the basics on Medical Assistance (see: Jamie Held‘s Medical Assistance & Real Property and Jen Santini‘s Medical Assistance Basics for Minnesotans). Medical Assistance, or Medicaid as it is known, is the insurance program provided by counties to those who have no money of their own to […]

Downton Abbey: A History Lesson on Inheritance

January 6, 2013

A couple of us here at Epilawg are big fans of Downton Abbey and are very much looking forward to tonight’s premiere of Season 3 on PBS. Without giving a ton of plot points away to those of you who have not yet watched the series (Season 1 is available on Netflix and both Seasons […]

Valuing a gift

December 22, 2012

Scheduled to decrease January 1, 2013, the federal gift tax exemption will go from the $5.12 million to $1 million*. Many individuals have made substantial gifts this year to take advantage of the high exemption. The type of assets gifted vary; from unique art collections and family business interests to real property, securities, and cash. […]

The “Power of Attorney” in Real Life

September 25, 2012

Some clients know how important the Power of Attorney document is. They may have acted as attorney-in-fact for a spouse or an elderly relative. Or they may have experienced first hand the challenges created when someone hasn’t executed a valid Power of Attorney. The Power of Attorney (aka POA) names an attorney-in-fact to make financial […]

Reverse Mortgages

September 20, 2012

A reverse mortgage is when the owner of the home withdraws equity from the home and receives cash either as a lump sum, installment payments, line of credit or combination thereof. Reverse mortgages seem to give pause to most people. However, the negative reaction is most likely due to the lack of information regarding reverse […]

Torrens vs. Abstract Property: What’s the Difference?

August 21, 2012

I have written many posts about various aspects related to real estate: life estates, titling real estate, and transfer on death deeds, to name a few. What each of these topics has in common, besides having to do with real estate, is that how the real estate is classified will dictate how, by whom and where […]

What is a Life Estate?

July 9, 2012

Every now and again a client will ask for a life estate to be created; however, most often the client does not understand what exactly it is, how it is created or the potential benefits and pitfalls of creating such an estate. In this post, I will attempt to give a basic overview of a […]