An honor and a responsibility As agent, you will have the right and responsibility to make financial decisions for the principal if he or she ever loses the ability to make those decisions. You should feel honored that someone trusts you enough to task you with this, but it is an enormous responsibility. If you…

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The cost of a nursing home and how to pay for it A national survey by insurance company Genworth discovered that the median annual cost of a semiprivate nursing home is more than $80,000, with a private room costing more than $90,000 a year. To make matters worse, this cost is growing at over twice…

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Mrs. Brooks — the end of the story (Note: the following is a dramatization.) As described earlier, Mrs. Brooks made out her will shortly after her husband’s death. It covered a substantial estate, which included money, stock portfolios, bonds, a house and several other properties. She left instructions for her funeral and set aside some…

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Making out a will (The following is a dramatization.) Shortly after the death of her husband, Mrs. Brooks decided it was time to start making out her own will. At the age of 75, she was a woman of considerable net worth. There was a large amount of cash, the stock portfolio and bonds she…

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Nursing home costs a likely expense The cost of nursing home care is staggering. According to a 2015 Cost of Care survey by Genworth Financial Inc., the median daily cost of a room in a nursing home in North Carolina is $225, with a minimum cost of $108 and a maximum cost of $630. Bear…

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Making your wishes known now A living will, also called an advance directive for a natural death, is very different from the will you make out to dispose of your assets. What we normally think of as a will is technically called a testamentary will, and it is not considered finalized until after your death….

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Help with financial planning The statistics around retirement are scary. More than a quarter of a million Americans turn 65 every month, and 80 percent of Americans between the ages of 30 and 54 believe they will not have saved enough for retirement. 45 percent of Americans have nothing saved for retirement, and the average…

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Preparing for retirement (The following is a dramatization.) The Millers are a couple in the Charlotte area. Bob used to run a heating and AC company, but a car crash left him with limited mobility and he took early retirement. Alice is nearing her own retirement from the medical records office where she has worked…

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Power of attorney must be done right What is power of attorney? It is the power to make legally binding decisions on behalf of another. Non-durable financial attorney ends when the person granting it is incapacitated. Durable attorney continues. If you are going to be named as a trustee or attorney-in-fact, you will want an…

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Facing the inevitable (The following is a dramatization.) Mr. Johnson has two children, one of whom is looking for work and the other of whom is working two jobs to put his own children through college. Neither one of them can spare the time and money to take care of him. So he has a…

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