Senior Citizen's Guide to Metro Detroit - page 11

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avoidable taxes. Many people don’t realize that when they
add a person as a joint owner, it is a divestment of assets
for Medicaid purposes. There is an additional negative
result from adding an owner to real estate in the possible
loss of stepped up tax basis. This could result in a large
capital gains tax when the property is sold.This is an
entirely avoidable result with proper planning.
Not having a Durable Power of Attorney, or having
one without appropriate powers.
A durable power
of attorney is one of the most important documents in
planning. It allows another to act on your behalf. A durable
power of attorney must be reviewed and updated fairly
frequently. Due to a change in the law, if your power of
attorney is more than 2 years old, it needs to be redone.
Years ago, these documents were simpler. Now, a
well-drafted document is lengthy due to the fact that any
power not listed in the document is not available to your
agent. This is particularly necessary to avoid probate court
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