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Unanimous Decision by the United States Supreme Court Rejects Protection of Inherited IRA’s:

By | Estate Planning, Estate taxes, Other, Retirement Planning, Seminar announcement | No Comments

The Supreme Court in a unanimous decision written by Justice Sotomayor made it clear that inherited IRA’s are not protected from creditors under the Federal Bankruptcy Code. In the opinion the Court found that Heidi Heffron-Clark, who inherited an IRA from her deceased mother in 2001, and then filed for bankruptcy 9 years later, could not shield her inherited IRA from her creditors.

The Court focused on the interpretation of the term “retirement funds.” The Court interpreted the meaning of “retirement funds” under Section 522(b)(3)(c) to mean sums of money set aside for the day an individual stops working. The Court went on to say: “…we look to the legal characteristics of the account in which the funds are held, asking whether, as an objective matter, the account is one set aside for the day when an individual stops working.”

The Court said that there were three legal characteristics of an inherited IRA that make it so an inherited IRA is not what was meant by a “retirement fund” under the US Bankruptcy Code.  The three characteristics are:

1)      The holder of an IRA may never invest additional money into the account

2)      Holders of an inherited IRA must withdraw money from the retirement account, no matter how many years from retirement they may be.

3)      The holder of an inherited IRA may withdraw the funds at any time without penalty

The Court went on to expound upon how these three characteristics of an inherited IRA make it so that an inherited IRA is substantially different from a traditional or Roth IRA, and because of these differences an inherited IRA was not meant to be an exempt asset under the Bankruptcy Code. The Court further went on to say that the purpose of the exemptions in the Code are to protect the debtor’s essential needs. The Court said, Allowing debtors to protect funds held in traditional and Roth IRAs comports with this purpose by helping to ensure that debtors will be able to meet their basic needs during their retirement years. “

“The same cannot be said of an inherited IRA. For if an individual is allowed to exempt an inherited IRA from her bankruptcy estate, nothing about the inherited IRA’s legal characteristics would prevent (or even discourage) the individual from using the entire balance of the account on a vacation home or sports car immediately after her bankruptcy proceedings are complete.”

Due to this unanimous decision by the United States Supreme Court it is now more important than ever to make sure that your estate plan is set up properly to ensure the greatest amount of protection for your IRA. With qualified estate planning trusts your IRA can be protected for your loved ones, despite this most recent ruling. Have your estate plan reviewed by an experienced estate planning attorney that understands these very complicated issues and they will show you how they can protect what the government won’t.

Scottsdale and Glendale Estate Planning Lawyer David Eastman - VA Accredited AttorneyContributed by MH Phoenix, Arrowhead and Scottsdale Estate Planning Attorney and Partner, David T. Eastman.

What the Attorneys of Morris Hall Can Do For You:
The attorneys at Morris Hall have 100’s of years of combined experience ensuring that families’ assets are protected from probate, unnecessary taxes, creditors, ex-spouses and Medicaid spend-down.  The attorneys also help those in Arizona and New Mexico to apply for and receive Medicaid assistance and Veterans Benefits.  Our Arizona offices are located in Phoenix, Mesa, Scottsdale, Cave Creek, Tucson, Prescott, Flagstaff and Arrowhead.  Our New Mexico offices are located in Albuquerque, Las Cruces and Santa Fe.  Contact us today at 888.222.1328 to schedule an appointment!

This blog should be used for informational purposes only.  It does not create an attorney-client relationship with any reader and should not be construed as legal advice.  If you need legal advice, please contact an attorney in your community who can assess the specifics of your situation.

FREE Estate Planning and Living Trust Seminar in Sun Lakes, AZ March 13th

By | Estate Planning, Seminar announcement | No Comments
 At this this Free Workshop we will discuss:

  • What is probate and why it is important to avoid?
  • What is the differences between a Will and a Living Trust?
  • Changes in estate and tax law and what that means if you currently have an estate plan.
  • Asset protection for spouse and beneficiaries from divorce, creditors and medicaid spend down.
  • How are living trusts created in another state handled under Arizona Law?
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Sun Lakes, Arizona
Thursday, March 13th
9:00am-11:00am
register
Sun Lakes Oakwood Country Club
24218 S Oakwood Blvd
Sun Lakes, AZ 85248
(Google Map)
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FREE Estate Planning and Living Trust Seminars in Tucson, AZ February 18th - 20th

By | Estate Planning, Seminar announcement | No Comments
 MH is Pleased to Announce the Estate Planning Workshop in the Tucson Area
 At this presentation we will discuss:

  • What is probate and why it is important to avoid?
  • What is the differences between a Will and a Living Trust?
  • Changes in estate and tax law and what that means if you currently have an estate plan.
  • Asset protection for spouse and beneficiaries from divorce, creditors and medicaid spend down.
  • How are living trusts created in another state handled under Arizona Law?
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Tucson, Arizona
Tuesday, February 18th
9:00am-11:00am
register
Saddlebrooke Mountain View Country Club
38759 S Mountain View Blvd
Tucson, AZ 85739
(Google Map)
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Green Valley, Arizona
Wednesday, February 19th
9:00am-11:00am
register
Best Western Green Valley
111 S La Canada Dr
Green Valley, AZ 85614
(Google Map)
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Tucson, Arizona
Thursday, February 20th
9:00am-11:00am
register
Hilton Tucson East
7600 E Broadway Blvd
Tucson, AZ 85710
(Google Map)
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FREE Estate Planning Seminar in Albuquerque and Rio Rancho, NM February 11th, 12th and 13th

By | Estate Planning, Seminar announcement | No Comments

 

 Free-Seminar-Living-Trusts
 At this presentation we will discuss:

  • What is probate and why it is important to avoid?
  • What is the differences between a Will and a Living Trust?
  • Changes in estate and tax law and what that means if you currently have an estate plan.
  • Asset protection for spouse and beneficiaries from divorce, creditors and medicaid spend down.
  • How are living trusts created in another state handled under Arizona Law?
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Rio Rancho, New Mexico
Tuesday, February 11th
9:00pm-11:00am
register
Rio Rancho Hilton Garden Inn
1771 Rio Rancho Blvd
Rio Rancho, NM 87124
(Google Map)
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Albuquerque, New Mexico
Wednesday, February 12th
9:00am-11:00am
register
Albuquerque Marriott Uptown
2101 Louisiana Blvd NE
Albuquerque, NM 87110
(Google Map)
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Albuquerque, New Mexico
Wednesday, February 12th
6:00pm-8:00pm
register
Albuquerque Marriott Uptown
2101 Louisiana Blvd NE
Albuquerque, NM 87110
(Google Map)
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Albuquerque, New Mexico
Thursday, February 13th
9:00am-11:00am
register
Albuquerque Courtyard Journal Center
5151 Journal Center Blvd NE
Albuquerque, NM 87109
(Google Map)
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Remembering on November 11th

By | Holidays, Other, Seminar announcement, Veterans | No Comments

Ever since the Declaration of Independence was set forth in 1776, there have been brave and dedicated men and women who have come forward and raised the banner of freedom.  From those early days, there has been a need for individuals to stand up and provide protection of this nation from those who would take that freedom away.  The statement that freedom is not free continues to ring forth to this day.  It is not trite or trivial; it is true, correct and bold.

There are many who over the years have given much to insure that we remain free.  Some have given all; many have lost limbs; and others have suffered emotional and physical wounds and scars.  Everyone who enjoys the freedom provided to us to this very day should give thanks for those who went before us and those who are among us today who have made this possible.

To protect those truths spoken of by our forefathers as self-evident, there will always be the need for brave and gallant men and women to come forward at the risk to body, limb and mind.  The 11th of November has been set for us to give thanks to those who are willing to do that.  May we always remember and be grateful to them by showing the respect they have earned in serving this nation, truly the greatest of all nations on this earth.

The words of the Declaration of Independence ..."that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights, that among these are Life, Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness,"  shall always be with us when there are gallant individuals who step forward.

Dan_Morris_176x216Contributed by MH Phoenix Estate Planning Attorney and Senior Partner Dan R Morris.

About Morris Hall:
At Morris Hall, we have focused our legal practice on estate planning for over 40 years.  Along with estate planning, our attorneys help clients and their families with matters of probate, trust administration, wills, power of attorneys, business planning, succession planning, legacy planning, charitable gifting and other important legal aspects.  We also have divisions in financial, real estate and accounting to help you incorporate all of your planning together, ensuring that everything works perfectly for your needs and situation. Our Arizona offices are located in Phoenix, Mesa, Scottsdale, Cave Creek, Tucson, Prescott, Flagstaff and Arrowhead.  Our New Mexico offices are located in Albuquerque, Las Cruces and Santa Fe.  Contact us today at 888.222.1328 to schedule an appointment!

This blog should be used for informational purposes only.  It does not create an attorney-client relationship with any reader and should not be construed as legal advice.  If you need legal advice, please contact an attorney in your community who can assess the specifics of your situation.

Estate Planning Seminars in Santa Fe, New Mexico October 24th, 2013

By | Estate Planning, Seminar announcement | No Comments

Please join MH as we present an important and educational estate planning workshop in the Santa Fe area entitled "What Happens When You Die?"

Dates and Locations listed below:

Estate Planning Seminar

 At this presentation we will discuss:

  • What happens to an estate when a person passes away.
  • Changes in the law affecting estate planning and trusts.
  • What is probate and why it is so important to avoid.
  • The benefits of a living trust in planning your estate.
  • The use of an A-B trust for asset protection for the surviving spouse with protections from spend down for long-term care, creditors, remarriage and divorce proceedings.
Santa Fe, New Mexico
Thursday, October 24th
9:00am-11:00am
SESSION FULL
Courtyard Marriott Santa Fe
3347 Cerrillos Road
Santa Fe, MN 87507
(Google Map)
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Santa Fe, New Mexico -SESSION ADDED!
Thursday, October 24th
2:00pm-4:00pm
Courtyard Marriott Santa Fe
3347 Cerrillos Road
Santa Fe, MN 87507
(Google Map)
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Santa Fe, New Mexico
Thursday, October 24th
6:00pm-8:00pm
Courtyard Marriott Santa Fe
3347 Cerrillos Road
Santa Fe, MN 87507
(Google Map)

Congratulations to the Practitioners with Heart!

By | Other, Press Releases, Seminar announcement | No Comments

The October issue of Trusts and Estates Magazine reveled the winners of its First Annual Practitioners with Heart Awards.  Six outstanding individuals were awarded this honor from across the nation for their charitable giving and mentoring.

West_Hunsaker_93x111West Hunsaker, of Morris Hall PLLC, was one of this years 6 honorees and the firm is delighted about his recognition.  Mr Hunsaker has worked with the Phoenix Children's Hospital and Make-a-Wish Foundation for over two years, and now holds a position on the national Make-a-Wish Planned Giving Advisory Council.

The winners can be viewed on the Wealth Management site.

For more information, you may contact MH at 888.222-1328.

This blog should be used for informational purposes only.  It does not create an attorney-client relationship with any reader and should not be construed as legal advice.  If you need legal advice, please contact an attorney in your community who can assess the specifics of your situation.

Estate Planning Workshop in Sun Lakes, Arizona July 17th at 2:00pm

By | Estate Planning, Seminar announcement | No Comments

Please join MH as we present an important and educational estate planning seminar in Sun Lakes, Arizona entitled "What Happens When You Die?

What-Happens-When-You-Die
At this presentation we will discuss:

  • What happens to your estate and assets after you die
  • What it probate and why it should be avoided
  • The nuts and bolts of living trust and the importance of keeping it up to date
  • Law changes that have affected estate and trust planning
  • Planning to protect your estate and assets from spend down for long-term care, divorce proceeding, law suits and creditors.
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Sun Lakes, Arizona
Wednesday, July 17th
2:00pm-4:00pm
Sun Lakes Oakwood Country Club
24218 S Oakwood Blvd
Sun Lakes, AZ 85248
(Google Map)

Estate Planning Seminars in Albuquerque, NM July 16th and 17th

By | Estate Planning, Seminar announcement | No Comments

Please join MH as we present an important and educational estate planning workshop in the Albuquerque area entitled "What Happens When You Die?

Dates and Locations listed below:

What-Happens-When-You-Die
At this presentation we will discuss:

  • What happens to your estate and assets after you die
  • What it probate and why it should be avoided
  • The nuts and bolts of living trust and the importance of keeping it up to date
  • Law changes that have affected estate and trust planning
  • Planning to protect your estate and assets from spend down for long-term care, divorce proceeding, law suits and creditors.
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Albuquerque, New Mexico
Tuesday, July 16th
6:00pm-8:00pm
Albuquerque Marriott Uptown
2101 Louisiana Boulevard NE
Albuquerque, NM 87110
(Google Map)
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Albuquerque, New Mexico
Wednesday, July 17th
9:00am-11:00am
Courtyard Marriott Journal Center
5151 Journal Center Boulevard NE
Albuquerque, NM 87109
(Google Map)

MH Estate Planning Seminars In Sedona and Prescott, Arizona - June 11th and 12th

By | Estate Planning, Seminar announcement | No Comments

REMINDER: ONLY 1 WEEK LEFT TO REGISTER!

MH Will be presenting a Joint Client and Public Estate Planning Seminar June 11th in Sedona, Arizona and June 12th in Prescott Arizona.

We invite all to attend this special estate planning presentation entitled "What Happens When You Die?"

What-Happens-When-You-Die
At this presentation we will discuss:

  • What happens to your estate and assets after you die
  • What it probate and why it should be avoided
  • The nuts and bolts of living trust and the importance of keeping it up to date
  • Law changes that have affected estate and trust planning
  • Planning to protect your estate and assets from spend down for long-term care, divorce proceeding, law suits and creditors.
Sedona, Arizona
Tuesday, June 11th
6:00pm-8:00pm
Poco Diablo Resort
1752 State Route 179
Sedona, AZ 86336
(Google Map)
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Prescott, Arizona
Wednesday, June 12th
10:00am-12:00pm
Prescott Resort
1500 State Route 69
Prescott, AZ 86301
(Google Map)