Partners' Letter
Dear Clients and Friends,
 
Happy summer from all of us at SS&B! Vacation is a good time to catch up on your reading about estate planning do's, don'ts and best practices. We're here to help you create the estate or long-term care plan that is right for you and your family based on your unique situation.
 
There is a lot to learn in this issue, including: five things to avoid when creating your estate plan; three tax advantaged ways some taxpayers age 70½ and older can use Required Minimum Distributions (RMDs) from their retirement accounts; and an update on the SECURE (Setting Every Community Up for Retirement Enhancement) Act, a bill currently pending in Congress that if signed into law, will change the rules that govern RMDs made from retirement accounts after the account owner's death.
 
In "Ask SS&B" we discuss why someone might decide to transfer her house to a trust and the different types of trusts most often used to own a home.
 
SS&B is excited to announce that we will soon be welcoming client #10,000 to the firm - read on to see how we are celebrating!
 
The most recent program in our Smart Counsel Series, "Who Does What, When...? The Role of the Fiduciary," took place on Thursday, July 25 in our Dedham office. Watch your inbox for information about our upcoming programs.
 
As always, we encourage you to send us ideas for future articles.  Please feel free to send us email addresses for new subscribers or forward this newsletter to friends and family members.
 
Steven Joshua Samuel
Suzanne R. Sayward
Maria C. Baler 

By Attorney Maria C. Baler
 
As an estate planning attorney, I see a lot of clients who try to take matters into their own hands to save money, time or both. I also see the unfortunate estate planning missteps and the results, including the time, cost and effort required to correct the mistakes that could have been easily avoided by seeking legal advice from an experienced lawyer. Here are a few things to avoid on your way to an appointment with a qualified estate planning attorney to discuss your own estate plan, and a couple of others to keep in mind once you get there.
Three Tax Advantaged Ways to Use Required Minimum Distributions (RMDs) 

By Steven Joshua Samuel JD, MBA, AIF®
 
For those taxpayers 70½ and older and retired, the IRS requires annual withdrawals from retirement accounts. Some fortunate taxpayers don't need to use their entire required withdrawal amount for living expenses and wonder whether there are tax advantaged ways to put this "extra" money to use. Here are three tax advantaged ways some taxpayers can use RMD amounts.
Ask Samuel, Sayward & Baler LLC

Q:         My neighbor put her house in a trust. Should I put my house in a trust?
Keep Your Eye on the SECURE Act
 
By Natalene Ong
 
The SECURE (Setting Every Community Up for Retirement Enhancement) Act is a bill currently making its way through Congress. If the Act is signed into law, it will change the rules that govern Required Minimum Distributions (RMDs) made from retirement accounts after the account owner's death.
Our 10,000th Client!
 
We are excited to share that we will soon welcome new client #10,000 to our firm. Although we often handle multiple matters for a client over their lifetime, every client (or couple) has their own separate file number. Within the next several weeks, we expect to open File No. 10,000! We are so grateful to all of our clients and their families, and to the attorneys, accountants and tax preparers, financial professionals, aging life care professionals , and others who refer us to their family, friends and clients on a regular basis. Thank you! All of us do our very best to provide our clients with excellent advice and services, and to do so in a timely and cost-efficient manner, always keeping in mind our firm's mission, vision and values:
 
Mission : To provide our clients with high quality estate planning, estate settlement and elder law services, while developing long-term relationships with our clients and their families who we truly value.
 
Vision : To be the go-to source for estate planning, elder law and estate settlement services, and to be a valuable resource to our clients, their families, our colleagues and referral sources in these areas and for other issues that confront them.
 
Values : Expertise, knowledge, delivering the highest quality services and work product, professionalism, reliability, dependability, client retention over the long term, teamwork and collegiality.
 
For those of you who may not be aware, Attorney Steven Joshua Samuel, who founded the firm and still serves as of counsel to the firm, and Attorney Sayward have been working together since 1985. Attorney Baler joined the firm in 1991, Attorney Poole in 2015, and Attorney Ong in 2018. Attorney Greenfield joined our firm in 2015 and now serves as of counsel to the firm. Over the years we have been privileged to work with not only our clients, but their children and in some cases their grandchildren, not to mention siblings, friends and neighbors! On average, we welcome 250 new clients each year, in addition to the estate plan updates, long-term care planning, estate settlement and trust administration work we do for our existing clients and their families. 
 
To celebrate our 10,000th client, we will be giving that lucky client (or couple) a $100 Visa gift card. If that client was referred to our office by someone we know, we will also send a $100 Visa gift card to them!
 
Thanks to our clients, families, colleagues and friends for their confidence and trust in us.  It is our pleasure to work with you each and every day.
What's New at Samuel, Sayward & Baler LLC
 
Here's what's been happening at Samuel, Sayward & Baler LLC!

Speaking Events
 
Attorney Baler presented A Legal Checkup at the Westwood Senior Center on June 3.
 
Attorney Sayward and Attorney Poole presented Your Home v. the Nursing Home: What happens to the Home when the Owner needs a Nursing Home? at the Dedham Senior Center at Traditions on June 13.
 
Attorney Baler will be speaking at the Westwood Senior Center on Monday, September 9th at 10:00. Contact the Westwood Senior Center or check out our website for more information as it gets closer.
 
Smart Counsel Series Presentations
 
In May, our Smart Counsel Series topic was Aging Life Care Professionals: What are They and Who Needs One?  Guest speakers Susan Bernat and Jill McGovern, aging life care professionals from Your Elder Experts in Waltham shared with attendees the ways in which these professionals can serve as a vital resource to older adults and their families.
 
Last week, Attorney Sayward and Attorney Baler presented the latest installment of our  Smart Counsel Series Who Does What, When . . . The Role of the Fiduciary. A lively discussion was had about things like: What happens after you have created your estate plan documents at the time of your death?  What needs to be done and why?  When should it be done and how long will it take? What is the role of the Trustee of a Trust or the Executor/Personal Representative under a Will? 
 
Keep a lookout for information on our next Smart Counsel Series presentation scheduled for September 19th!
 
Other News
 
Our new and improved website has launched! Check it out and let us know what you think! Remember that we continuously add articles, blogs and Q&As to our website in the Our Content section of the site. If you are looking for wisdom in between newsletters, look no farther than here.
 
These articles are not intended to provide legal advice or create or imply an attorney-client relationship. No information contained herein is a substitute for a personal consultation with an attorney

Samuel, Sayward & Baler LLC, 858 Washington Street, Suite 202, Dedham, Massachusetts  
781-461-1020      www.ssbllc.com