Penning Blog

Tuesday, September 9, 2014

People view life insurance as a contingency plan if something bad happens in life. That view, however, is not the whole picture when it comes to considering life insurance as a planning tool. Life insurance can be a solution to several challenges in estate, business and cottage planning situations. As such, it is not only a contingency plan, but it can be a primary tool to serve a specific purpose in a person's overall succession plan.

Traditionally, the purpose of life insurance is to replace a wage earner’s income in the event of his/her unexpected or premature death. But that is not the full story. Life insurance can be a valuable tool to provide liquidity to pay estate taxes...

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Wednesday, August 27, 2014

Periodically Dan Penning will appear in the local media to discuss various matters relating to Cottage Law, Estate Planning, Business Succession Planning and Asset Protection.

On July 31, 2014, Dan appeared on Dennis Prout’s (CFP®Prout Financial Design) Retirement Planning Radio Show on WTCM...

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Thursday, May 15, 2014

Families Preserve Their Best Memories of the Family Cottage Through Succession Planning

Spring triggers the annual migration of cottage/cabin owners back to their summer homes after the long, cold winter – or, for those more fortunate, spending time at warm climate retreats. Spring also brings the excitement and anticipation for a new season of warm, muggy nights, fishing, watersports, campfires, and the constant coming and going of family members and guests at the family cottage.

As I reflect on the start of another summer season fresh with new inquiries about cottage law matters such as ways to protect and plan for the future of many family cottages,...

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Tuesday, April 29, 2014

Background

Historically, the rules have been such that beneficiaries to a will or a trust are not bound or forced to present their claims pursuant to “binding arbitration clauses” that were drafted into a will or a trust by the decedent prior to his or her death. The rationale to not enforce arbitration clauses in wills and trusts was that only voluntary parties to a contract, where both parties were providing consideration, could be forced to abide by the terms of an arbitration clause in the contract. Based on the fact that in a will or trust situation there is no “consideration exchange” dealing with a will or...

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Tuesday, April 29, 2014

As life circumstances change (birth, marriage, divorce, death), it may become necessary to make changes to your estate planning documents. If estate planning documents are not kept up-to-date, they can become useless. The best way to make changes to estate planning documents is to either restate an estate plan in its entirety or make specific changes to documents like a will through a codicil or a trust through an amendment to the trust.

While it may be tempting to just take out a pen and make changes to documents by hand, this is not recommended. Changes will not be effective unless you use the same formalities as you did when drafting the original estate planning documents, such...

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