UPCOMING EVENTS

SEMINARS FOR SEPTEMBER 2017

MONROEVILLE
Tuesday, September 12, 2017
2:00PM
The Estate Planning Centers
3824 Northern Pike, Suite 801B
One Monroeville Center
Monroeville, PA 15146
Just west of Red Lobster on Rt. 22

MURRYSVLLE / DELMONT
Tuesday, September 12, 2017
7:00 PM
Holiday Inn Express
Delmont/Murrysville
6552 Route 22
Delmont, PA 15626
Behind Lamplighter Restaurant on Rt. 22

MURRYSVLLE / DELMONT
Thursday, September 14, 2017
2:00 PM
Holiday Inn Express
Delmont/Murrysville
6552 Route 22
Delmont, PA 15626
Behind Lamplighter Restaurant on Rt. 22

MONROEVILLE
Thursday, September 14, 2017
7:00 PM
The Estate Planning Centers
3824 Northern Pike, Suite 801B
One Monroeville Center
Monroeville, PA 15146
Just west of Red Lobster on Rt. 22

MONROEVILLE
Saturday, September 16, 2017
9:30 AM
The Estate Planning Centers
3824 Northern Pike, Suite 801B
One Monroeville Center
Monroeville, PA 15146
Just west of Red Lobster on Rt. 22

 
 

 
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Proudly serving clients throughout Allegheny, Westmoreland, Butler, Fayette, and Washington Counties; including Pittsburgh, Monroeville, Greensburg, Latrobe, Cranberry, Wexford, Sewickley and YOUR community.
Protecting Your IRA For Your Children
 
In many families, Individual Retirement Accounts, or IRAs, are the single largest asset which may be passed on for the family following a death. As a result, properly protecting the benefits of this valuable asset must be kept in mind when planning for the future. A frequent but difficult question is whether an IRA which is inherited by the children of a deceased IRA owner will be protected against loss in the event of a creditor claim or bankruptcy involving one of the children. This turbulent issue has long lingered without an adequate answer, and unfortunately the most recent court decision in In re Heidi Heffron–Clark, decided April 23, 2013, highlights the need to protect families with proper planning.
 
In the Heffron-Clark case, Ruth Heffron died, leaving her daughter Heidi as the beneficiary of her $300,000 IRA. Heidi and her husband filed for bankruptcy, and her creditors attempted to capture the inherited IRA to satisfy their claims. Heidi's attorney pointed to a group of court decisions which found that an Inherited IRA is protected against creditor claims in bankruptcy, however the court instead agreed with an alternate line of cases which find that Inherited IRAs do not have the same protection granted for an IRA during the lifetime of the account creator. Under this decision, the beneficiary’s past or future creditors can take away these valuable accounts.
 
This important decision is from the Seventh Circuit Court of Appeals, a well-respected court which sits just beneath the United States Supreme Court in our federal judiciary. While this opinion has only been available for a couple of weeks, it has rekindled a fiery debate about whether our beneficiaries are protected against loss in these turbulent economic times. While the United States Supreme Court may ultimately weigh in on the issue to provide resolution, it is far more likely that we must continue to plan in a cautious manner to protect our families, both now and into the future.
 
Planning Opportunities
 
For many of our clients, we arrange for assets to be inherited in a trust structure which is very liberal and flexible for the family, yet protected from outsiders, including creditors or bankruptcy claims. With careful trust drafting, we can include assets such as IRAs within this protection while still preserving valuable tax-deferred growth of the IRA throughout the lifetime of the children. The current legal conflict between the powerful courts in our nation on such an important issue reinforces the need to plan proactively to assure our families have the opportunity to thrive and prosper even after we are gone.
 
If you would like to take the opportunity to ask us any questions about estate planning for retirement accounts, or estate planning in general, remember that our initial consultations are free. We can discuss appropriate planning strategies for your situation, and discover together the best alternatives to address your unique personal circumstances.