To The Daily Sun,
When I saw the invitation to the estate planning seminar, I didn't see any need for me to go. It seemed that you need an estate and to die. Without much of the former and planning to not participate in the latter, it seemed a waste of time.
Then I was reminded that I've been expecting a visit from the Publishers' Clearing House, and very rudely reminded that occasionally things don't go as I plan.
The seminar was interesting. Estate planning is about more than just the things I assumed. The seminar identified the planning needed to ensure that your wishes are carried out in a variety of circumstances, and that doing so will help your loved ones.
For me, and perhaps for many people, it seems that the most difficult part of estate planning is facing and making the decisions that need to be made ... that many of us would rather not think about. Below is my limited understanding of the key things to consider.
If you can't make your own health care decisions, who do you trust to make them for you? Have you given them guidance on what measures you want taken to keep your body alive if it is unlikely that you will ever recover what you feel is a meaningful life? If someone has to make these decisions for you without knowing your wishes, it could make a difficult situation even worse. People need a health care power of attorney, and perhaps a living will.
Because of privacy laws, you may need to provide a HIPAA Release so that the people with your health care power of attorney, or the people they consult with, can access your medical records. You can probably get this form from your doctor's office.
Who do you want (and trust) to control your assets, pay your bills, and make financial decisions for you, if you can't do these things yourself, e.g., you are in a coma or suffering from Alzheimer's. For this you need a financial power of attorney.
How do you want your assets handled and divided after death? Who do you want to be the executor for your estate or do you want a costly lawyer assigned to do this job? For this you need a will and perhaps a trust.
Most of us won't pay federal estate taxes, since the deduction is over $5 million per person and $10 million for a couple, and New Hampshire doesn't have an estate tax. However, New Hampshire residents who own property in other states might owe estate taxes to those states.
I think that anyone, not just senior citizens, who hasn't already addressed all these questions would benefit from attending an estate planning seminar. Anyone with a spouse and/or children or other dependents have even more decisions to make, e.g., how will your spouse/children/dependents be cared for if you can't do it? Anyone who has addressed these questions needs to reconsider them periodically to address changes.
An estate plan identifies your wishes, so you must make the key decisions and document them. You may find that forms, available on the Internet (do a Google search), point out many of the decisions you need to make. You probably need to see a lawyer to make sure you have done everything correctly to achieve your wishes. But my guess is that any decision-making and forms you complete before seeing attorney will save you money.
Last Updated on Friday, 19 September 2014 11:32
To The Daily Sun,
Polar bears in the Antarctic or no polar bears in the Antarctic, Marty Valengavich's letter here on Thursday is just stupid.
His point, apparently, is there are no scandals in the Obama administration. Don't write this junk about me, Marty, tell it to the New York Times, the Washington Post and all those other liberal papers and news sources that say, "Obama lied."
That sir is a scandal. When testimony before Congress proves he lied, when a key Obama appointee at the IRS takes the Fifth before Congress, and every person in the world that watches the evening news on TV saw and heard Obama tell us, "If you like your health insurance you can keep your health insurance, Period. If you like your doctor you can keep your doctor, period." Those are scandals by any reasonable measure.
Of course though, your not a reasonable person. Not sure what you are but certainly not logical or reasonable. You will apparently make up your own definitions to suit your political views and damn the facts.
Last Updated on Friday, 19 September 2014 10:36
To The Daily Sun,
When I heard that the N.H. Humane Society had fired Mary DiMaria, I was aghast — I just couldn't believe it! I am a senior citizen, and I had always believed that Humane Societies WERE humane, and that being kind and humane was what they always were!! I have known Mary for years and years — she was a fellow "animal lover", and I knew when she worked at the Humane Society in Laconia, the organization could not be in better hands. Mary and my family often interacted, especially with trading off pet care, and helping each other out. She has actually fostered over 250 kittens and cats! Loving care of the animals in her care is the topmost priority. That she tried, in good faith, to do that at the Humane Society, it got her actually fired, which I thought was very cruel, and definitely inhumane! The Humane Society actually fired her for her support of their own mission! I still find it hard to believe. The NHHS was inhumane to a human being!
I will still support other Humane Societies, but not the one in Laconia.
Jean (Sue) Schmidt
Last Updated on Friday, 19 September 2014 10:31
To The Daily Sun,
There are those days when the coverage of the beginning of World War III is just too overwhelming. No U.S. Constitution, no rule of law, executive orders. We are at war. No, we are not at war. We need boots on the ground. No, boots on the ground. No, we do not have a secure border. Yes, amnesty for 5 million lawbreakers. $500 million here, $500 million there. No problem, it is for a good cause.
How did this happen? Yesterday this: "Obama Forcing New Gun Buyers to Declare Their Race and Ethnicity."
Some of the writers who lean left, and candidates who are avoiding paying for advertising, can be insulting to those who differ. Do those of the liberal persuasion ever see what Barack Hussein Obama and Eric Holder have done to our country in the past six years? In New Hampshire we have two members of Congress, and one member in the U.S. Senate, all three (of whom) support Obama in his efforts to destroy our country. I have spoken out against Republicans who have lost their way for years. Scott Brown will get my vote. It is a vote against Jeanne Shaheen.
My country means that much to me that I will vote for Republicans who will end up taking a seat in Washington to stop Obama. This is for yours and my grandchildren. How can you liberals and Democrats do this to the children?
Last Updated on Friday, 19 September 2014 10:28
To The Daily Sun,
As a 75-year New Hampshire resident and long-standing registered Republican, I would like to acknowledge the hard work state Sen. Andrew Hosmer has done for the citizens of District 7.
Andrew's moderate, sensible pragmatic approach to legislating has been a refreshing contrast to the ideological, narrow-minded view of extremists that are trying to gain a foothold on our party and state. Sen. Hosmer truly is committed to working with both Republicans and Democrats to craft effective legislation that benefits the people he represents.
It's never been more important to support and thank Sen. Hosmer for his commitment to New Hampshire. I hope my friends and colleagues will support him during this crucial midterm election.
John P. Kimball
Last Updated on Thursday, 18 September 2014 11:23