August review

August Review: Taxes, Planning, Aging & Bob Ross

It’s the end of the month, so it’s time for the August review of elder-law related developments.

Taxes & Planning

Iowa has decided to ditch its inheritance tax, phased out and fully reduced by January 1, 2025. There are only five others: Kentucky, Maryland, Nebraska, New Jersey, and Pennsylvania.

Even “Gen Z” needs to know something about estate taxes. Here’s what. (Turns out it’s mostly just if they live in one of the states with an estate tax.)

Suze Orman has spoken, with love and empathy: “You are nuts” if you think estate planning is difficult.

Planning to give to charity? There are interesting ways to go about that, such as the charitable lead trust.

Strategies for IRAs have changed since the SECURE Act. Charities are even better beneficiaries (if you are so inclined) than before SECURE. Here are more ways to adjust your thinking.

Apparently, there are five things retirees always forget about estate planning. One of them is updating beneficiary designations. Don’t forget, because not updating can create major problems.

Business owners often forget that they need more than a basic estate plan. They also need a succession plan. Some thoughts to get started.

Worried about taxes? Here are ways to prepare for higher ones.

Worried about long-term care? Here are ways to plan for it.

Aging & Science

Most people want to age at home as long as possible. In some places, NORCs, or naturally occurring retirement communities, are providing support for just that. Meanwhile, here are some practical tips for making a home suitable for aging in place.

The assumption that mental faculties decline with age may be wrong; a new study suggests some abilities actually improve. But for many people, capacity does start to slip. Some guidance for those concerned about parents can help, though it of course could apply to any loved one.

Artificial intelligence might some day be able to diagnose dementia in a single day. For now, get an engrossing job; there’s a clear link between stimulating work and a lower risk of dementia.

A Scientific American opinion piece says Alzheimer’s research has gone astray, and that’s what led to the FDA’s controversial approval of the drug that probably doesn’t work.

Studies have shown that people tend to get happier as they get older. Why is that? Some ideas.

August Review of Celeb Estates

Britney Spears: Dad Jamie has agreed to step down as conservator of the pop star’s estate, saying a battle would not be in Britney’s best interest and that he’ll work the the court and her attorney to “prepare for an orderly transition to a new conservator.” Notice that he didn’t say he supports ending the conservatorship.

Aaliyah: The singer’s 1996 album started streaming this month, much to the annoyance of those administering her estate. Her uncle and former manager was behind the release, and her executors accuse him of failing to account and communicate. Aaliyah died in a plane crash 20 years ago at age 22.

Bob Ross: A new documentary raises questions about the celebrity painter’s estate. The flick criticizes Bob Ross, Inc., and the company says it’s all inaccurate. His plan wasn’t full of happy little accidents.

Kurt Cobain: The naked baby on the cover of Nirvana’s Nevermind album is suing the lead singer’s estate and the surviving members of the band, accusing them of child porn, failing to protect him from exploitation and lifelong damages. Legal sources say: Expect an early dismissal.

Nichelle Nichols: Family members and friends are battling over the actress, who played Lt. Uhura on “Star Trek.” Nichols is 88, and her only son, Kyle Johnson, was named her conservator. But her former manager and a friend are both unhappy with Kyle’s service and lawsuits continue.

That’s it for the August review. Enjoy the last few days of summer!


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