Top 9 Mistakes Attorneys Make Bonusing Support Staff

By Kristina Schneider, Practice Success Coach The concept of financial bonuses is not unknown to most people.  It is highly used in a lot of sales and marketing industries.  Even in the legal world, many lawyers have, at some time or another when working for a firm, received some kind of bonus. However, the concept of bonusing non-attorneys is relatively new, particularly for the estate planning lawyer world.  Attorney and Ultimate Estate Planner President, Philip Kavesh, did not consider or implement the idea of a formal staff bonus system until about 12 years ago.  He, as well as the attorneys…

Steve Oshins Releases the 8th Annual Non-Grantor Trust State Income Tax Chart!

By Steven J. Oshins, Esq., AEP (Distinguished) State income tax avoidance planning has become a necessary area of expertise for all estate planners. After all, how can an estate planner design a trust without first analyzing the income tax effects of selecting residents of different states as trustees? The 8th Annual Non-Grantor Trust State Income Tax Chart The 8th Annual Non-Grantor Trust State Income Tax Chart is a summary of the state income tax rules for non-grantor trusts and highest state income tax rate from state to state.  It simplifies the analysis by summarizing each state’s taxing rules and providing…

Is Your Office a Safe Place for People to Work?

By David Giuliano, Business Coach For over 40 years I have worked in the business world and I’ve learned many lessons. One of the most important aspects of business success is a work environment where people feel safe, can communicate honestly, and grow as a whole.  Having an unsafe environment causes the most damage to the owner of the business.  This might seem like a no-brainer, but the truth is in this day and age, it’s extremely hard to maintain a healthy work environment, but very necessary to do so. My work has shown me that if we can address…

The Top 6 Reasons You Should Be Giving Seminars

By Philip J. Kavesh, J.D., LL.M. (Taxation), CFP®, ChFC, California State Bar Certified Specialist in Estate Planning, Trust & Probate Law For estate planning attorneys, all of the technical and legal education in the world is great, but if you are not able to bring in prospective clients to plan for, there is no way for you to be able to successfully run your own estate planning practice.  If you regularly receive referrals from other sources, such as financial advisors, CPAs, life insurance agents or other attorneys, that’s great.  However, what happens if those referrals stop?  How consistent and predictable…

The Most Effective Way to Handle the Price Objection

By Philip J. Kavesh, J.D., LL.M. (Taxation), CFP®, ChFC, California State Bar Certified Specialist in Estate Planning, Trust & Probate Law If you were to ask most estate planning attorneys to narrow down the most common objection most people have about moving forward with their estate planning, price would definitely be on the top of the list. With the influx of cheap, online and do-it-yourself estate planning, living trusts have become a commodity and people are more price-sensitive than ever. While price may still be one of the main reasons a prospective client may choose not to do business with…

Are You a Helicopter Boss? How Micromanaging is Killing Your Practice

By Kristina Schneider, Practice Success Coach You may have heard of the term “helicopter parent”.  It’s a term used to describe that parenting style where they “hover overhead”, like helicopters, over everything that their child is doing, overseeing and trying to control and supervise all aspects of their lives. This type of style can also be found in the workplace. A helicopter boss, whether it’s the attorney business owner or perhaps an office manager or other person in some type of supervisory role over others, is someone whose management style is similar to this parenting style.  It’s someone who is…

Profiling 15-Year-Old Estate Planning Attorney Sidd Finch, III

By Steven J. Oshins, Esq., AEP (Distinguished) This article profiles a once-in-a-lifetime talent who is a mere 15 years old. His name is Sidd Finch, III. I recently learned about him when reading an online article at Law.com noting that he had just passed the California State Bar Exam. Early Childhood: Chess Grandmaster at 12 Years Old Sidd is unlike any other 15-year-old. He was born and raised in a small town in New Jersey to parents Sidd Finch, II and Shelly Finch. Sidd is a cardiologist and Shelly is a family law attorney. They realized at a young age…

IRS PLR Approves Adding Formula General Power of Appointment for Basis Step Up

By Edwin P. Morrow, III, J.D., LL.M., MBA, CFP®, CM&AA® In PLR 202206008, the IRS approved of a judicial modification (approval of settlement) of a GST grandfathered trust to add a formula testamentary general power of appointment that would enable the remainder beneficiaries to receive a step up in basis over such assets at the primary beneficiary (child of settlor) powerholder’s death. The IRS ruled that 1) this addition did not disturb the GST exempt nature of the trust or cause any adverse GST consequences and that 2) it would cause estate inclusion over only the desired amount (more on this…

Having Disconnects and Conflicts in the Office Right Now?

By Kristina Schneider, Practice Success Coach With everything going on in the world right now, it is safe to say that most people are under much more stress than usual.  From dealing with concerns around the pandemic and working in a post-pandemic world, managing the constantly barrage of headlines, politics and war, to feeling a whole spectrum of emotions about all the change and heaviness that has happened in past couple of years.  Business owners and employees with young children are having to juggle their own set of challenges trying to navigate care and schooling for their children, while we…

Steve Oshins: Estate Planning for Large Estates

Estate Planning Attorney, Philip Kavesh, and President of The Ultimate Estate Planner, Inc. recently interviewed nationally-known estate planning and asset protection attorney, Steve Oshins. The interview consisted of a number of questions related to estate planning for large estates.  Following are some of the highlights of the interview. Phil Kavesh: What do you consider a large estate? Steve Oshins:  I would define “large” as $30 million or more.  Roughly half of my clients are over that number and half are under that number. Phil Kavesh: What does the $30 million-plus client think about? Steve Oshins: These clients generally know that they…