Financial Advisor and Author Teresa Bear Offers Three Ways To Prepare For a Tragedy
Financial Advisor, CPA and Author Teresa Bear explains how you can proactively protect your family in the case of a sudden tragedy.
Phoenix, AZ – November 7, 2012 – Each and every one of us at some level has dealt with the tragic loss of a loved one, or has watched a person we care about deal with the pain and suffering of a long term disability. Death is inevitable and (according to the US Department of Health and Human Services) 70%[i] of Americans over the age of 65 will face disability and need long-term care services. With these unpleasant realities so certain, estate and disability planning in America should be well designed and well developed, enabling families to avoid the hardship associated with having a poor plan or no plan at all.
Teresa Bear, President of JC Grason of Mesa, LLC, recently discussed three things that every American over the age of 65 should be considering about their estate and disability planning:
- Lawyers can create great legal estate planning documents, but if your assets are not “funded” into the trusts – or if you have documents that are poorly defined in a disability situation, you can end up with a very IN-effective plan. Here are some significant problems to look out for:
- If you have a trust and none of your accounts are tied to it, the trust will not help your estate avoid probate. A well-prepared legal document can help your family avoid the cost of probate, but if your bank and investment accounts are not held in the name of your trust, it will not help.
- It is also important to make sure your real estate is tied through newly created deeds to transfer the property into the trust.
- Long-term care can wipe you out financially. Home health care aides cost $15-30 per hour and assisted living facilities cost from $4,000 to $8,000 per month. In many parts of the country, nursing homes can cost well over $100,000 per year. It goes without saying that developing a long-term care plan is critical. There are a variety of ways to use leverage with specific financial products to help you protect your hard earned retirement savings beyond traditional long term care insurance. Being proactive and planning for these future tragedies can spare your loved ones the stress of trying to “figure it out.”
- Divide and BE CONQUERED. All too often financial advisors rely just on financial solutions to solve a client’s long-term care risk. Likewise, lawyers look to their legal documents to solve the problem. CPA’s can strategize about the best way to avoid paying too much in taxes. The best advice is to seek out a “team approach”. A well-prepared financial plan addressing death and disability, designed in tandem with a plan for minimizing taxes and coordinated with well-drafted legal documents, will yield you the very best results. Three professionals working “independently” can actually cancel out the effectiveness of one another’s work. Be proactive by insisting that the advisor(s), CPA(s), and lawyer(s) you trust work collaboratively.
For more information on how Teresa Bear can help, please visit www.teresabear.com.
About Teresa Bear:
Teresa Bear is the President of JC Grason of Mesa, LLC and specializes in retirement planning and asset preservation for retirees and their loved ones. She has been a Certified Public Accountant practicing in the area of taxation for more than 25 years and is also a Certified Financial Planner ™. She is also an Investment Advisor Representative with Brookstone Capital Management LLC, a SEC Registered Investment Advisor.
Teresa is a graduate of Graceland University in Iowa and has an MBA from the University of Kansas. She is also the author of the book She Retired Happily Ever After. Teresa has been featured in USA Today and Woman’s Day Magazine.
[i] National Clearinghouse Long Term Care Information – “Will You Need LTC?” website. U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, http://www.longtermcare.gov/LTC/Main_Site/index.aspx