Monday December 9, 2013
I am happy to report that I have created another "eCourse" (in other words, a series of lessons that are delivered by email) called A Crash Course in Estate Planning. In this eCourse you will actually become privy to all of the information that I discuss with each and every new client, regardless of whether they already have an estate plan or not.
Who should sign up for this eCourse?
If you're just starting out on putting your estate plan together, then this eCourse is definitely for you. And even if you already have an estate plan, this eCourse will help you understand all of the parts of your plan and why it may be time to take it out of the drawer and review it.
For advisors who work with clients on financial planning and/or tax planning, this eCourse will teach you the seven fundamentals of estate planning so that you can bring value to your client relationships.
How does this eCourse work?
Each estate planning lesson will come to you in an email newsletter at one per week for the next seven weeks.
What will you learn?
Once you've completed the eCourse, you will learn the answers to the seven questions that I review with new clients at our very first meeting, which will lead you to the conclusion that estate planning isn't about signing a bunch of legal documents that you don't understand. Instead, it's about making informed decisions that lead to the creation of legal documents that put your wishes, goals and final instructions in writing, resulting in the one basic thing that estate planning is really all about, which is revealed in Lesson #7.
How do you get started?
Follow this link to the eCourse sign up page and your first lesson will arrive in your inbox shortly: eCourse Sign Up - A Crash Course in Estate Planning.
Wednesday December 4, 2013
TMZ reports that a California judge has declared actress Amanda Bynes competent to stand trial on DUI charges stemming from her arrest in April 2012 after she sideswiped a police car while attempting to pass it.
The 27-year-old Disney star turned movie star has been undergoing psychiatric treatment at a private facility located in Malibu named The Canyon since being involuntarily committed back in July after setting herself on fire. Ms. Bynes is expected to be released from treatment by Christmas and a court-ordered progress report is scheduled for January 7. TMZ speculates that Ms. Bynes will not actually go to trial for the DUI charges, instead a plea bargain will be reached.
Tuesday December 3, 2013
Nearly four years after her death on December 20, 2009, actress Brittany Murphy is back in the news. After years of litigation her biological father, Angelo Bertolotti, won the right to obtain samples of his deceased daughter's hair in order to perform additional toxicology tests. The original coroner's report cited pneumonia and severe anemia as the 32-year-old actress' cause of death, which were ironically the same causes of death listed for her 40-year-old husband, Simon Monjack, who died a mere five months after his wife. The results of the new toxicology tests show high levels of heavy metals in Ms. Murphy's body at the time of her death, things which are found in many rat poisons and insecticides. The conclusion: Ms. Murphy and her husband may have been poisoned to death.
So who would want to kill the Clueless actress and her screenwriter/director husband? According to her father, the actress was targeted by rogue government officials who were suspicious of her support of Department of Homeland Security whistleblower and filmmaker/journalist Julia Davis. But not so fast - Ms. Murphy's mother, Sharon Murphy, who was the primary beneficiary of her daughter's estate instead of the actress' husband, dismisses the claims of Bertolotti and Davis, stating in an open letter to The Hollywood Reporter, "Let me be clear: I am quite confident Brittany never cooperated with Julia Davis, never signed any statement in support of her, never met with her and barely knew she existed."
Sharon Murphy goes on to speculate in her letter that "toxic mold" found in the home that her daughter purchased in 2003 (from none other than Britney Spears) and where the actress and her husband lived at the times of their respective deaths was the real cause of death. Meanwhile, the LA Coroner's office is considering whether to reopen the investigations into the deaths based on the new toxicology results.
Monday December 2, 2013
Singer/songwriter Taylor Swift is at the center of a mystery that she would probably rather ignore. Back on October 29 the remains of Canadian Michael Callan's crashed single engine Cessna sat on Nashville's runway 2C for about seven hours before the debris was even noticed. But that's only one small part of this bizarre story - Callan's flight plan had him flying 60 miles from Windsor, Ontario, to Pelee Island, Ontario, which is a small island in the western half of Lake Erie, but somehow he managed to fly across the Canadian-U.S. border undetected and head hundreds of miles off course to Nashville, where he circled the airport for about two and half hours in dense fog before attempting his fatal landing.
And yes, it gets even weirder - Callan, who was a convicted felon on armed robbery and child porn charges, was flying a plane registered to Windsor Flying Club, and according to the club's records Taylor Swift was listed as Callan's "next of kin" in case of an emergency. That came as a surprise to both Ms. Swift, who says she doesn't know Mr. Callan, and the pilot's actual next of kin, his two sisters.
Meanwhile, as the NTSB continues to investigate the crash over one month later, one thing about this bizarre story will never be resolved - why Callan named Ms. Swift as his next of kin. Just because he named her doesn't make it so.