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This & That: The B&G Blog

Welcome to our blog and the portal to our newsletter articles.  To the right, you can view past articles and blog posts by category, and below, we share some of the latest news and views from around the web and within the firm.  Please note that the information provided is meant for informational purposes and is in no way a replacement for professional legal, tax, or therapeutic advice.

Jan 30 2019

Gut Bacteria Linked to Alzheimer’s

A new, small study seems to show a link between bacteria in our guts and the risk of Alzheimer’s disease.  Of course, much study is needed before we know what that really means.

Jan 27 2019

Human Compost?

The state of Washington is considering authorizing an alternative way to dispose of human remains: compost.

Jan 25 2019

Whitey Bulger Estate Pursuing Wrongful Death Claim

Siblings of Whitey Bulger agree to appoint the gangster’s nephew as personal representative and intend to pursue a civil rights claim over Bulger’s death while in prison.  Even if they prevail, the estate owes millions for a criminal judgment.

Jan 23 2019

Judge Rules Sumner Redstone Had Capacity to Change His Estate Plan

Much of the battle over Sumner Redstone’s estate plan has been resolved with a settlement that cuts his former girlfriend out of the picture and requires her to pay back millions, and a judge’s ruling that Redstone had the ability to change his estate plan with the 40th and 41st amendments to his trust.

Jan 23 2019

Do You Need a Contingent Beneficiary?

Yes, you do.  A contingent beneficiary is the person (or charity) who receives a bequest if the first choice (the primary beneficiary) can’t receive it or doesn’t want it. As this article explains, they’re used on life insurance, retirement accounts, and other assets.  The article is incorrect in one respect: it says that if your primary is deceased or disclaims and there’s no contingent, anyone with an interest will fight for it in court.  Although a probate proceeding may be needed, it will pass according to your Will or, if you don’t have one, state law, probably with no fighting.

Jan 21 2019

Blood Test Could Diagnose Alzheimer’s Early

Measuring a specific protein in the blood may indicate the development of Alzheimer’s disease as much as a decade before symptoms occur, one study finds.  That said, a lot more research is needed.

Jan 19 2019

Estate Planning with an Elder-Law Lens

Any way you look at it, estate planning involves elder law.  That said, this attorney makes a case that the “elder law” aspects of planning should be an important motivator for starting one.

Jan 17 2019

Planning Must: Second Marriage with First-Marriage Kids

If you are married and have kids from a prior marriage, you simply must have an estate plan AND be very aware of what happens to each individual asset, by beneficiary designation and joint ownership.  Whether you want your kids to something — or nothing — at your death, you have to plan to make it happen.

Jan 16 2019

Supreme Court to Hear Trust Taxation Case

The Supreme Court, that’s right the U.S. Supreme Court, has announced it will hear a case about how trusts are taxed, precisely, whether states can tax the income a trust generates if the only contacts with that state is the beneficiary. Some state courts have said yes, some no.  The high court should settle the split.

Jan 16 2019

Estate Planning and a Fairy Tale

What Cinderella’s father should have done to protect her interest in his estate, and why an attorney can be a fairy godmother.

Jan 16 2019

Movement Helps Keep Your Brain Sharp

Exercise and other daily activities appear to help preserve memory and brain function, even for people who already have dementia.  The study didn’t indicate how much is enough, just that the more activity, the better the brain.

Jan 16 2019

Employers Are Clueless About Workers’ Caregiving

A new study reveals that employers have very little knowledge of the stresses and strains caregiving puts on their employees; some don’t even ask.