Reno Gazette-Journal Sunday, August 4, 2019
Some people think a will is all they need to handle their personal affairs. Others think they don’t have enough assets to justify creating a trust. Most retirees don’t even consider the ramifications of a guardian being appointed to make decisions on their behalf as a result of failing to plan.
There are many myths surrounding trusts, wills and guardianship. An upcoming seminar is intended to dispel some common myths and to help educate senior adults about their options, recognizing the truth in the old saying, “If you fail to plan, you are planning to fail.”
“As we age, we have a greater awareness that there can be complexities that we either haven’t planned for or even yet thought of,” said seminar series organizer Brett Junell. “While some people think a will is all they need to handle their personal affairs, they overlook the fact that a will is for after your death.”
The next seminar in the highly attended Retired Living Truth Seminar Series is on August 15 and will address what planning and legal instruments senior adults should have in place. Is the standard list of will, power of attorney and trust enough? How do these work together and what are the loopholes that are easily overlooked in many wills and trusts? And, are all legal documents created equal?
A panel of experts will address these and other issues related to estate planning documents. One of the panelists is Richard Schulze of the Schulze Law Group. Schulze’s practice emphasizes Elder Law, tax, and estate planning for individuals. He is a frequent lecturer to the public on estate, Medicaid, business, asset protection and tax planning matters.
“A key to making informed decisions about what you want in retirement is advanced planning and education,” Schulze said. “It’s important to know your options and take action while you have the ability to do so on your own terms.”
“Most people think these documents are for when we are no longer here; however, many are very important for the living,” Junell added.
There are so many questions that seniors haven’t even asked themselves. What if you have a serious fall and you can no longer climb upstairs to the bedroom you’ve enjoyed for the past 30 years? Or worse yet, you are incapacitated in some way and can’t return to your home. And what’s in store for your spouse in either scenario? And what if you don’t have a spouse to help with these decisions?
“Unfortunately, a will won’t help in this situation or many other common situations. A trust won’t help either,” Junell said.
But what documents are necessary and most appropriate? Expert panelists will discuss the differences between trusts and wills, as well as how these and other important documents can impact both the living and the dead.
With approximately 30% of guardianship cases impacting seniors, panelists will address a number of myths surrounding guardianship and what you should to know about new supportive decision making and how this impacts guardianship laws.
What about trusts? Who needs one? What’s the difference between revocable and irrevocable? What’s a special needs trust? Do trusts require probate like a will does? Corporate trustee versus private trustee?
“We want to make sure that seniors are armed with the right information and tools to be able to live the lifestyle they desire and be prepared should plans change due to health or other circumstances. It’s all about educating and empowering people to stay in charge,” said Junell.
“Join us for a 90-minute educational seminar to hear firsthand from legal experts about how to avoid common challenges faced by families just like yours,” he added.
“The Truth about Trusts, Wills and Guardianship” seminar will be held on August 15 from 10-11:30 a.m. at the RSAR Building at 5650 Riggins Court, Reno (near Meadowood Mall).
Junell said the goal of the Retired Living Truth Seminar Series, which he and his wife started 3 years ago and has now had an accumulated 3,158 attendees, is to focus on education and empowerment for seniors. He and his wife, Annette Junell, are both Certified Senior Housing Professionals who appreciate that the late-life transition needs of senior adults are complex and require information and planning.
The seminars are free for seniors and their guests. Pre-registration is required because seating is limited.
Reservations can be made online at www.RetiredLivingTruthSeries.com or by calling (775) 432-6398.
Upcoming seminars in the Retired Living Truth Series include:
- August 15: The Truth About Trusts, Wills and Guardianship
- September 12: The Truth About Home Health & In-home Care
- October 24: The Truth About Paying for Retirement Living
- November 21: The Truth About 55+ Retired Living Options
- December 19: The Truth About Successful Aging
Thank you to the following sponsors who keep the seminar series free for seniors: Amada Senior Care, Cascades of the Sierra Senior Living, Jim Morman of Edward Jones, Debbie Wood of Flagstar Bank, Kindred Hospice, MorningStar Senior Living, Brian Wessel of PhysioSpine Reno, Plan Your Story, Promenade on the River, Prominence Health Plan, Sarah Feliz of Put It In Order, Revel Rancharrah and Schulze Law Group.
This article is sponsored by Annette & Brett Junell in conjunction with the above sponsors.