Online resource center to help you explore these key issues, and others, regarding your estate.

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Mr. Miller has many years of experience in designing and implementing a comprehensive variety of Trusts, Wills, and other estate planning documents, as well as settling estates in the most expedient and appropriate method. Further, he counsels and assists clients on becoming eligible for VA benefits and Medi-Cal.

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VA Pension/Aid & Attendance/Medi-Cal

Mr. Miller has been active in the area of VA Pension and Medi-Cal for well over a decade. He uses various specialized types of Trusts as well as non-trust strategies to gain eligibility for his clients and save the family money.

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Probate & Estate Administration

Mr. Miller has been settling estates (both simple and complex) for well over 40 years. The starting point is always to create a strategy to settle the estate in the most efficient manner possible with a minimum of taxes. Often times the strategy created allows the family to bypass Probate Court proceedings.

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Is My A-B Trust Obsolete?


By merv,

  Filed under: Blog, Estate Planning

Some say that since Congress raised the amount individuals can leave their heirs to $5 million and spouses can combine their exemptions up to $10 million without incurring estate or gift taxes, the A-B Trust is obsolete.  This Wall Street Journal article: Does Your Trust Need a Tune up? discusses some of the issues.  While there may be very good reason to think twice before using an A-B trust in 2011 and 2012, what happens after 2012?  As we learned in 2010, that’s anybody’s guess.

Rather than rewrite the A-B trust for a two-year period, there are other methods to deal with the situation. Furthermore, there are still many good reasons to keep the A-B configuration regardless of the estate tax disadvantage. In addition to their use in estate tax planning, they can be used for other purposes, including protecting trust assets from the surviving spouse’s creditors and offering the first spouse to die a degree of control
over the final disposition of trust assets. While we recommend clients revisit their estate planning every few years, a knee-jerk reaction to temporary changes in the tax law seems
counter-productive.

If you have questions about your estate plan, take a look at our Estate Planning FAQ.  Be sure to consult an experienced estate planning attorney.  Question #3 deals with how often an estate plan should be reviewed.Question 16 discusses how to find a competent attorney when moving to a new city or state.

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About Living Trusts

About Living Trusts is hosted by the Law Offices of Merwyn J. Miller, as your online resource center to help you explore these key issues, and others, regarding your estate.

Merwyn J. Miller, J.D.

  • Board Certified Specialist in Estate Planning, Trust & Probate Law
  • Co-Author of legal text book and of “Don’t Go Broke in a Nursing Home
  • Teacher of law courses at public and private colleges
  • Continuing Education Instructor for attorneys
  • Columnist for largest regional newspaper in San Diego County and professional journals for 15 years, Contributing author to the book “In Your Service: The Veteran’s Friend”
  • Masters Degree in Financial Services - Estate Planning
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