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Sharon Ravenscroft Estate Planning Blog

Welcome to my blog covering all things estate planning, family estate planning. business planning, wills, trusts & probate.

Sharon is a Shareholder of The Cavanagh Law Firm, P.A. which has offices in Phoenix and Sun City, Arizona. Sharon was born and raised in Phoenix, Arizona.

Sharon received her B.A., cum laude, in 1984 from Wellesley College and her J.D. in 1987 from the University of California, Hastings College of the Law, where she was a staff writer on the...

Sharon is a Shareholder of The Cavanagh Law Firm, P.A. which has offices in Phoenix and Sun City, Arizona. Sharon was born and raised in Phoenix, Arizona.

Sharon received her B.A., cum laude, in 1984 from Wellesley College and her J.D. in 1987 from the University of California, Hastings College of the Law, where she was a staff writer on the international law journal.

Simplifying the challenges related to family asset and estate legal issues is her focus for her clients.

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Gun Trusts Can Limit Taxation Upon Death And Help with Multiple Users

Gun Trusts are revocable trusts different and separate from a revocable living trust normally used for estate planning. With a Gun Trust, multiple owners (spouses or parents and adult child) can own firearms together, and when one dies, the other remains the Trustee and additional transfer tax should not be needed. Also, Gun Trusts allow guns to be...

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Changes in Revocations of Beneficiary Deeds

Revocations of Beneficiary Deeds now need to reference the name of the Grantee that was listed on the beneficiary deed, as well as the recording instrument number of the beneficiary deed in order for the Maricopa County Recorder to accept the Revocation. This changes was not done by rule and adds a requirement to the statutory form. It is likely th...

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Pay on Death Designation for Vehicles

The Arizona Revised Statutes now allow for a Beneficiary Designation for Vehicle Transfer upon Death. The designation can be signed and kept with the title of the car, mobile home or other applicable vehicles. Since the law is new, it is not clear how effective it will be if the the vehicle is being financed.

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Obama proposes $3.5 estate tax exclusion

President Obama's current proposal in his budget is a permanent the estate, and gift tax parameters as they applied during 2009. The top tax rate would be 45 percent and the exclusion amount would be $3.5 million for estate and $1 million for gift taxes. As reflected in the Administration’s adjusted baseline projection, the portability of unused es...

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Premarital is needed to make earnings sole and separate

If you need to protect your fiancee or spouse from your creditors, then simply titling assets as separate property is not enough. A pre-marital agreement or post-marriage agreement is the only way your earnings can be considered separate property under Arizona law. Otherwise, if you use earnings to pay the mortgage or add to an investment in your s...

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Common error: We will die at the same time

One of the most common error in the trusts is that couples assume they will die at about the same time. When one of the couple survives by years and the survivor needs to have access to the assets without family interference. It is amazing how many times an adult child will say she wants her deceased's parent's half of the funds and wants to keep m...

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New Year Time for Resolutions to Have Powers of Attorney

The courts have made guardianships and conservatorships more complicated and expensive with new rules which were intended to limit court costs and attorneys fees. Avoid having the court in your business or health care, by having your own health care powers of attorney and financial durable powers of attorney. When I prepare powers of attorney, I co...

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Protect Your Special Needs Adult Child

In order to protect the government benefits for your disabled adult child, be sure to have a special needs trust for any funds you leave at your deaths.

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Electronic Passwords and Estate Planning

If you are ill, incapacitated or die, you will want your financial agent or Personal Representative to have use of your passwords and account information. Be sure to keep them in a safe place that can be found by the ones you trust. Placing a list with your notebook of estate planning documents is just one good idea.

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Electronic Passwords and Estate Planning

If you are ill or incapacitated or die, you will want your financial agent or

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