June 17, 2011 Trouble has died. Trouble,
Leona Helmsley's Maltese dog, died at the age of 12.
Trouble, one of the world's richest dogs,
inherited $12 million dollars in 2007 thanks to Leona Helmsley's careful
estate planning, beating out two of Helmsley's grandchildren for the
inheritance money. Even though a probate judge ruled
Trouble could only
keep $2 million of the money, that would be plenty to give
Trouble a life
Trouble was taken care of unlike most
Trouble moved to the Sandcastle Hotel in
Florida with a
full time bodyguard, fine food, and lots of pampering and grooming.
Trouble had no problem spending that $2
million either. Yearly security costs were $100,000.00 and a full time
companion was $60,000.00. Now that
Trouble has passed the remaining
inheritance money will be left to the Helmsley Charitable Trust. It is
unusual for someone to leave so much money to a dog and not their blood
relatives, however, we all of the right to plan our estate and make legal
arrangements prior to our death in order to ensure our assets go where we
want them to.
Why estate planning is important.
It is unusual for someone to leave so much money to a dog and not their
blood relatives, however, we all of the right to plan our estate and make
legal arrangements prior to our death in order to ensure our assets go
where we want them to. Do you have a will? If you died today would your
family know what your family wishes and have the legal capacity to carry
them out? "Risks associated with failing to plan for estate transfer
include the transfer of property contrary to the client's wishes,
insufficient financial provision for the client's family, and liquidity
problems at the time of death." (Personal Financial Planning, Theory
and Practice) According to
Suze Orman, appropriate estate planning
includes a will, revocable living trust, advanced directive and durable
power of attorney for healthcare, and a financial power of attorney. Which
of these do you have completed already and which do you need to plan on
completing in the next 30 days?
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