2013 Articles

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Reverse Mortgages for the Affluent, Too: Are You Up to Speed on the Advantages and New Regulations for 2014?

  • Hyman G. Darling • 2013-12-30
  • More and more people are starting to realize that reverse mortgages aren't just for those struggling to keep their homes. These loans can also work for affluent retirees as a ...

A Never-ending Process - Here's a Helpful Estate-planning Year-end Checklist

  • Lisa L. Halbert • 2013-12-16
  • As the end of 2013 approaches, this is a good time to take stock and review where you have been and where you want to head. Financial planners encourage annual ...

Year End Tax Planning - It's Not Too Late

  • Gina M. Barry • 2013-12-01
  • With the approach of Thanksgiving, the holiday season has begun. As you sit down for your holiday dinner, remember that soon Uncle Sam will be visiting you to enjoy his ...

The Bay State's Personnel Records Law Beware - There Are Some Traps for the Unwary Employer

  • Kathryn S. Crouss • 2013-11-04
  • The Commonwealth of Massachusetts has strict regulations regarding employee records, and non-compliance can be costly for employers. Employers and employees should be aware of certain obligations and rights regarding an ...

Eliminating Guesswork: Effective Legal Planning for People with Alzheimer's Disease

  • Todd C. Ratner • 2013-11-01
  • Although it is important for everyone to plan for their future, legal planning for those diagnosed with Alzheimer's disease takes on heightened importance. Alzheimer's disease is a chronic, progressive illness ...

Things to Know When Your Child is Also Your Caregiver

  • Gina M. Barry • 2013-11-01
  • It is very common for a child to provide care to an aging parent in order to allow the parent to continue to live at home. A child is most ...

The Importance of the Special-needs Trust

  • Hyman G. Darling • 2013-10-07
  • A special needs trust, or sometimes referred to as a supplemental needs trust, is a document that is established to provide for a family member who has a disability. The ...

Estate Tax Update

  • Gina M. Barry • 2013-10-01
  • When a Massachusetts resident passes away, every asset that he or she owns is subject to estate tax. Estate tax is imposed by both the Commonwealth of Massachusetts (state estate ...

Planning for Incapacity: Take Steps Now to Keep the Court out of Your Personal Decisions

  • Gina M. Barry • 2013-09-23
  • If you were to become incapable of making your medical and financial decisions, do you know who would handle your affairs? Failing to plan for incapacity may mean becoming subject ...

An Estate Plan is Only Four Documents Away

  • Gina M. Barry • 2013-09-01
  • When it comes to estate planning, the old adage is true. An ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure. Many people believe that they do not have enough ...

Is This the Time to Fight? When Divorce Is Complicated by Serious Medical Concerns

  • Melissa R. Gillis • 2013-08-01
  • Divorce, parenting time issues, and full blown custody battles are not easy. In fact, they are stressful to say the least. But what happens when one parent is not only ...

Same Sex Married Couples Now Enjoy Same Rights Under Federal Law

  • Gina M. Barry • 2013-08-01
  • Until recently, and even if they were married in a state that recognizes same sex marriage, married same sex couples were treated differently under federal law than heterosexual married couples. ...

Bullying in the Workplace: Legislation Seeks to Protect Workers from Abuse, Harassment

  • Kathryn S. Crouss • 2013-07-29
  • A public hearing was held on June 25, 2013 before the Joint Committee on Labor and Workforce Development regarding HB 1766, proposed legislation entitled "An Act addressing workplace bullying, mobbing, ...

Call Your Lawyer: Don't Put Off Estate Planning for Your College-aged Children

  • Lisa L. Halbert • 2013-07-21
  • Summer is here and your college aged kids (or grandkids) are on break, or home from school, if only for a short period of time. While these technically "legal" adults ...

Deed with Life Estate

  • Todd C. Ratner • 2013-07-01
  • A person's home is oftentimes the most valuable asset that they may own. As an estate planning and elder law attorney, I am frequently asked how a home can ultimately ...

Estate Planning Myths Explained

  • Gina M. Barry • 2013-07-01
  • Myth #1 - "If I have a valid Will, my estate does not have to go through probate." The assets in your probate estate are those that are held in ...

Assisted Living or In-home Care? This Can Often Be a Difficult Decision for Your Loved One

  • Todd C. Ratner • 2013-06-01
  • At some point, many people reach a time in their lives where they need help with day-to-day living. Elders oftentimes have unique emotional and medical needs that must be assessed. ...

Considerations for Collectors

  • Gina M. Barry • 2013-06-01
  • Spring has sprung, and many of us have begun our spring cleaning. As we clean, we often find ourselves clearing the dust off of our collections. Some items we collect ...

Does My Child Need Guardianship?

  • Hyman G. Darling • 2013-06-01
  • As a child with cognitive disabilities nears his or her 18th birthday, parents often wonder whether they should seek a guardianship over their child. The short answer to this question ...

Capital Idea: Changes in the Law Greatly Benefit Those Selling Their Homes

  • Hyman G. Darling • 2013-05-01
  • Your home is likely your greatest investment, and fortunately, the IRS provides significant tax benefits upon the sale of it, which have evolved to greater benefit you. Many people remember ...

Special Needs Require Special Planning

  • Gina M. Barry • 2013-05-01
  • Many people in the United States are currently considered disabled as defined by Social Security. Their disability may entitle them to receive various benefits that are provided by the federal ...

Custody of a Special-needs Child: Sometimes, It's Better to Focus on Quality Parent Time, Not Quantity

  • Melissa R. Gillis • 2013-04-01
  • Child custody disputes, whether because of a divorce, modification of a prior judgment, or for never married parents who are no longer together, is a difficult, confusing and stressful process. ...

You Can't Take it With You: Consider Charity in Your Final Plans

  • Gina M. Barry • 2013-04-01
  • Do you donate money to charity each year? Perhaps you donate to an organization dedicated to finding a cure for an awful disease that has affected your life or the ...

Organizing Your Estate Plan

  • Gina M. Barry • 2013-03-01
  • Many people are currently in the process of organizing their financial information in preparation for the completion of their yearly income tax returns. If you have kept your records in ...

Regional Law Firm Attorneys Honored as 2012 SuperLawyers & Rising Stars

  • Christine Pilch Mancini

    Marketing Director

    CPilchMancini(at)BaconWilson.com

    413.781.0560

    • 2013-02-21
  • Springfield, MA - The Springfield-based regional law firm of Bacon Wilson, P.C. is pleased to announce that five of their attorneys have been distinguished as New England "SuperLawyers" and six ...

Estate Planning 2013: Changes That May Affect You

  • Todd C. Ratner • 2013-02-15
  • On January 2, 2013, after much debate, President Obama signed the American Taxpayer Relief Act of 2012 (the Act) into law. The Act makes significant changes that will affect many ...

Legal Practice: Law Students and Graduates Gain Valuable Experience as Clerks

  • Joseph Bednar • 2013-02-11
  • They often work behind the scenes, providing support to attorneys, judges, and others - writing, researching, and otherwise witnessing the mechanics of law. They're clerks, usually law students or recent ...

Cliff Notes - A 2013 Tax Update - What's Changed, and What Hasn't

  • Hyman G. Darling • 2013-02-01
  • It appears that in the short term, Congress and the President have agreed on tax legislation to avoid the proverbial fiscal cliff. Instead of reviewing what would have happened had ...

Moving Forward with a Reverse Mortgage

  • Gina M. Barry • 2013-02-01
  • A multitude of seniors, having paid off their mortgages many years ago, currently own their homes free and clear of any debt. Some are fortunate, and they have a nest ...

Estate-planning Myths Explained - To Avoid Problems, Separate Facts from Assumptions

  • Gina M. Barry • 2013-01-01
  • Certain ideas with respect to estate planning are widely accepted, yet unfortunately, inaccurate. This article will reveal and explain the most commonly stated estate planning myths. Myth #1 - "If ...

'Tis the Season . . . to Review Your Estate Plan: A New Year's Resolution That's Easy to Keep

  • Gina M. Barry • 2013-01-01
  • Have you made your New Year's resolutions yet? Most resolutions are so cumbersome, they are impossible to keep. A simple resolution to make and keep is to review your estate ...