Author Archives: Christl Denecke - Attorney at Law

Should My Children Inherit Equally?


My clients with more than one child sometimes puzzle over whether they should leave the same amount of money to each child.  This can be a hard decision because, even though parents love all of their children equally, our children … Continue reading

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Does Your Child Nead a Health Care Directive?


There are a lot of things people do to help our children prepare for college.  Giving your child some good advice, buying the right-size sheets for those extra-long dorm beds, and arranging for the purchase of all of those books. … Continue reading

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Who’s Afraid of Probate?


After reading my last blog post, a friend pointed out that you can only understand the benefits of a living trust if you know about the process of probate, and why you would want to avoid going through it.  Probate … Continue reading

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Am I Too Young For a Trust?


This post was prompted by a question a good friend asked me.  He is in his mid-30’s with a wife, two kids, a house, and a modest retirement account.  My friend asked me if it was true that for anyone … Continue reading

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The Estate Tax Benefits of Living in California


There are some people in California who would grumble about the Federal estate tax, but all California residents should be thankful that the State of California phased out its State estate tax in 2005.  Unlike California, seventeen states and the … Continue reading

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Should Your Children Wait for Their Inheritance?


Typically, our children are in the greatest financial need at the time they are raising a family.  But if we expect to see our grandchildren grow, the inheritance we plan to leave for our children won’t be available until after … Continue reading

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The Pitfalls of Portability


This year and next, a decedent can transfer his or her Personal Federal Estate Tax Exemption to his or her spouse.  This power to transfer, often referred to “spousal portability,” allows couples to protect a significantly larger chunk of their … Continue reading

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What to Do With an Inheritance?


With the economy the way it is these days, most baby boomers are not expecting to receive a windfall.  But investigations at the Center for Retirement Research at Boston College indicate that, as the parents of the sandwich generation pass … Continue reading

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Transferring California Assets Through Joint Title


Some of my clients have questions about transferring assets outside of probate by putting their heirs on the deed or title to property.  Although this may work for some clients in some situations, we need to be very careful about … Continue reading

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