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SOME THOUGHTS ON INTEREST RATES, TAXES AND STRUCTURED SETTLEMENTS: ANALYZING WHAT IS BEST FOR THE CLIENT

Since The Great Recession, the Federal Reserve has reduced interest rates and kept them low as a means of stimulating the national economy.  Most economists believe that this strategy is effective in achieving its goal.  However, one casualty is the structured settlement industry.  Since 2008, sales of structured settlements have declined by 22%.  The problem…

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LIMITATIONS ON LITIGATION SPECIAL NEEDS TRUSTS

Many clients who receive personal injury settlements are receiving important public benefits, such as SSI and Medicaid. SSI is an income stream that pays an individual monies intended to be used for food and shelter. For 2013, the maximum federal benefit rate is $710. In New Jersey, there is a state supplement of $31.25. Medicaid…

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RED FLAGS FOR SPECIAL NEEDS TRUSTS

In May of 2012 the Social Security Administration (“SSA”) changed the POMS with respect to reimbursement to family members for expenses incurred in visiting a beneficiary of a first-party special needs trust.  At about the same time SSI recipients began receiving notices that their benefits were being terminated, because their trusts provided for payments to…

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PLANNING FOR PEOPLE WITH DISABILITIES

Some 43 million Americans have one or more physical or mental disabilities.[1] This number is increasing as disabilities such as Autism and Alzheimer’s disease become more prevalent. Disabilities do not discriminate on the basis of age, race, or national origin. Some individuals with disabilities are wealthy, some are poor, many are middle class. An elder…

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