Russ Cook & Associates, PC

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Gun trusts: An estate plan for your firearms

With firearms legislation once again in the headlines, savvy firearms owners should consider creating a gun trust as part of a larger estate plan. A gun trust is a trust created to hold ownership of firearms, allowing them to be passed down for future generations. Generally gun trusts are created for restricted firearms, but can include other weapon types.

Who will take care of my pet when I die?

For many people, a pet is more than just an animal. A pet can be a cherished friend and a beloved member of the family. But what would happen to your pet after you pass away? Would a family member adopt him, or would he end up in a shelter?

Dealing with estate items no one wants

By 2030, more than 20 percent of the U.S. population will be 65 or older. Many of them will begin to move into smaller homes, assisted living or retirement villages. While married or raising children, the estates were large enough for multiple rooms of fine furniture, inherited and purchased households goods and family mementos.

How the tax overhaul will impact high-asset estate planning

Christmas may be over, but if you are in the process of planning your estate, you may still be thinking about gifts. A major part of estate planning is making gift transfers to certain beneficiaries. This is a great way to transfer your wealth to family members or loved ones, even though there is a limit on the amount of money that can be gifted without incurring taxes.

Keep your wealth in the family with a family limited partnership

The time to plan your family's future is not when you're elderly--it's now. There is no better time than the present to sit down and think seriously about how to ensure the financial wellbeing of your family for generations to come. One possible way to do this is with a family limited partnership.

Pet trusts can help pet owners have peace of mind

No two estates will ever be the same, as there are bound to be major differences between the lives -- and accrued wealth -- of the grantors. But many people own pets, so when it comes to establishing trusts for an estate, an animal companion trust or pet trust can be hugely beneficial for many different people.

Estate plans that protect assets and privacy

It’s flattering to have fans, but it can be frustrating when they watch everything you do. It’s not just the Lifestyles of the Rich and Famous that interests people; fandom continues after death. A recent example is Hugh Hefner. The Playboy founder passed away at the age of 91, and now people are asking what will become of his estate.

The next generation and your family business

If you're planning to keep your business in the family after you retire or pass away, there's more to it than grooming a successor. Your heirs' desire to run the business, their leadership capabilities, and technology and cultural changes should influence the decision. In addition to those factors, though, you need a succession plan that won't damage the business as it changes hands.

What is a community property trust?

Property ownership is never as simple as who signed the check or who holds the deed. Marital property is especially complex when joint owners become sole owners through the death of a spouse. When ownership changes hands, there are bureaucratic inefficiencies and tax complications that take time and cost money.

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