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Transfer wealth, lawfully avoid taxes … and declutter

Here's a notable but not often stressed point relevant to estate planning that a New York Times article recently passed along: within a few short years, more than one of every five Americans will reportedly be 65 or older.

And that means this: As scores of millions of senior-aged individuals and couples move from large family homes to smaller dwellings more responsive to their downsized needs, something has to go.

Namely, that is their stuff, the accumulations of a lifetime that now yield more than treasured memories and strong emotional feelings of attachment.

In fact, and for legions of people, the possessions that cram every nook and cranny of their homes now spell challenge and even overwhelming worry.

What can be done with all the material goods that have been amassed over the years?

That, notes the Times, is "a quandary familiar to many adults who must soon dispose of the beloved stuff their parents would love them to inherit."

News flash: In truth, the kids in most cases don't want much of it. If it is now overwhelming you (the would-be or actual planner now earnest about sound and meaningful estate administration), it will certainly turn their lives upside down.

And that is a point centrally conveyed by the Times piece, focused upon the observation that a veritable mountain of collected things must often be dealt with by families thinking about important matters like inheritance, family history/legacy and sheer practicality.

Put another way: Not every aspect of estate planning is always centered squarely on financial considerations, although such concerns are often paramount, obviously.

For many families, the lifelong accumulation of material goods must also be reflected upon and responded to in a way that optimally benefits current and future generations.

That subject matter can be addressed with a proven estate planning attorney and, when necessary, other professionals who are in the business of helping older Americans sensibly deal with a lifetime of clutter and downsize their lives to a more manageable degree.

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The Law Offices of Kimberly Butler Rainen
21 Central Street
Andover, MA 01810

Phone: 978-494-6730
Phone: 978-409-1928
Fax: 978-849-8212
Map & Directions

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We are in a 1700s Colonial located on the intersection between Brook Street, Central Street and Essex Street in historic downtown Andover, Massachusetts. The parking lot entrance is located on Brook Street, which is a one-way. From Central, turn down Essex Street. Before reaching the railroad tracks, when you see the St. Augustine Church on your right, take a sharp left turn on to Brook Street, which will turn you back toward Central Street. As you ascend the hill back toward Central Street, you will see large stone pillars on either side of the entrance to our parking lot. We have assigned parking spaces numbered 7 and 10.

From the parking lot, you may take the stairs located on the rear, left-side of the building up to the garden area, where the foyer entrance to our office is located. You can also follow the sidewalk on Brook Street up to Central Street, walk along Central Street past the main house entrance (with a wrought iron gate across the walk way) to an opening in the wrought iron fence, in to the garden area where the foyer entrance to our office is located.