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Denver Colorado Personal Injury Blog

Preparing your heirs for their big IRA windfalls

Millennials in Colorado are finally in for a big payoff. It is perhaps convenient to forget, but this generation survived the Great Recession of 2008, are struggling with heavy student loan debt and then face immense criticism for their resulting inability to purchase a home as quickly as their predecessors. However, their big day is finally coming. According to a CNBC article, the greatest wealth transfer in history is about to take place. It will pass $68 trillion on from baby boomers to Generations X, Y and Z.

As of the beginning of 2018, IRA accounts held $9 trillion in capital. Not surprisingly, this is the avenue through which many Americans will inherit money from parents and grandparents. However, failing to handle the transaction correctly can lead to taxes eating up a big portion of that inheritance. Note that there are far stricter rules for non-spouse than spouse beneficiaries.

How SCI patients reclaim a full life after a spinal injury

When people face catastrophic accidents in Colorado that result in spinal injury, it can be devastating. They foresee a life of doom and gloom with many challenges and few moments of happiness. While there will certainly be a number of obstacles to overcome and adjust to, many people do continue to live a full life after a spinal injury.

While conducting a study published by the U.S. National Institutes of Health, researchers mailed off 1,800 surveys to individuals living with traumatic spinal cord injury. The aim of the 2016 study was to identify the factors that most contributed to continued resilience in patients who suffered from SCI. Some of the contributing factors identified by the people who responded to the survey are as follows:

  •          Social support and social relationships
  •          Religion or faith in a higher power
  •          Physical health and functioning
  •          General outlook on life

4 things to remember about the IRS

If you are going through a personal tax audit, then you may be concerned about what the IRS will find. The Interval Revenue Service is not trying to dig deep to prove that you've done anything wrong. Audits are a normal part of life. In fact, most audits go well with no further implications.

Sometimes, the IRS does find that there were mistakes on your return or will ask for documents that you no longer have for tax years long in the past. That's why you need to know how to handle the IRS.

Teenagers are extremely susceptible to distracted driving

Texting while driving in Colorado is often treated as a teenage problem, but the truth is that adults are just as guilty. In fact, according to CNN, adults are more likely to be texting while driving than teens. Even so, distracted driving is far more dangerous when there is a teenager at the wheel. From snapping selfies of themselves driving to responding to text messages, teenagers often put themselves and other drivers at risk.

Many parents are surprised when their teenagers confess that they would or already do text and drive. Experts do not find this strange at all. They note that it is difficult for teens to ignore a distraction that already consumes their everyday life. When that phone goes off, the first impulse is often to reach for it. Who is it? What did the person say? Is it urgent?

Watch out for estate fights with stepmothers

It is not unusual for a parent in Colorado to remarry after the initial marriage ends. However, when parents remarry, it adds a new party to the list of beneficiaries. This may negatively affect surviving children in the event of their parents’ death. In fact, one attorney writing for Forbes noted that 50% of the cases of inheritance disputes at his firm involved stepmothers.  

Here are some of the many ways that the interests of stepmothers and stepchildren may collide:

  •          Joint-tenancy quarrels or deed revocations
  •          Claims of elderly financial abuse
  •          Life-estate challenges
  •          Probate objections
  •          Will contests

The new tax lay may burden families and retirees

Many people who filed their 2018 tax returns were surprised to receive a lower tax refund than they ever had before. Some people in Colorado may have even received a tax bill from the IRS. While many of the new tax law provisions benefit the wealthy and some benefit the general population, retirees and large families may get hit the hardest.

According to CNN, Colorado estimates that it will receive hundreds of millions of dollars in additional revenue due to the new tax laws until 2025. This is mostly as a result of the elimination of exemptions Colorado residents previously relied on, such as dependent and personal exemptions. Colorado has introduced some bills to offset the loss to families, but it will take some time to see if these laws pass and how they actually work in practice.

What does a medical directive cover?

No matter what age you are, it is important to think about your wishes related to health care and medical treatments. In Colorado, state law allows you to refuse or consent to medical treatments. However, some injuries and sicknesses may make it difficult or impossible for you to communicate your medical preferences to your doctor and/or family members. A medical directive gives your caregivers and medical staff clear directions relating to your care.

According to the Colorado Bar Association, there are several types of advance medical directives. A standard living will allows you to consent to or refuse certain life-sustaining procedures. Some common issues you may cover in a living will include artificial hydration and certain types of surgery. You may also outline your treatment preferences for situations where you are in a persistive vegetative state.

3 types of distractions that impair drivers

Distracted driving is a hot topic because more than 1,000 people are injured each day in this country due to a driver who isn't paying full attention to the road. This is one of the easiest things that drivers can prevent, thus making accidents all the more tragic when due to a driver's choice to splinter attention between the road and other things.

Many people don't realize exactly what happens when a driver is distracted. There are actually three types of distractions that they might encounter when behind the wheel. Each of these is dangerous in its own way.

How can cyclists stay safe on the road?

Cyclists in Denver face a myriad of risks when on the road. While they share the same rights and responsibilities as passenger vehicles, many motorists don't respect cyclists, which can lead to serious and devastating injuries. With May being National Bike Month, the National Safety Council explains what you can do to reduce your risk of injury on the road. 

One of the biggest risks facing cyclists is many drivers fail to recognize their presence. You can increase visibility by wearing the right gear, such as bright colors and reflective materials. This is especially important when riding at night. In this case, be sure your bike is also outfitted with reflectors as well as flashing lights to ensure you're visible as you ride. 

How revocable and irrevocable living trusts differ?

As you begin work on your estate plan, there are a variety of estate planning tools to consider using. One of those tools is a living trust, which is a type of trust you make during your lifetime to help manage your assets while you are alive and distribute your assets after your death.

Living trusts can be further divided into either revocable or irrevocable living trusts. However, people are often confused about the difference between the two. It can be helpful to understand the differences between revocable and irrevocable living trusts to make sure you choose the best type of trust for your situation and goals.

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Clifford Lee Beem
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Best Attorneys of America - 2018 member
5280 magazine - Top Attorneys in colorado American board of trial advocates CTLA-colorado trial lawyers association CBA - colorado bar association The National Trial Lawyers

*AV Preeminent and BV Distinguished are certification marks of Reed Elsevier Properties Inc., used in accordance with the Martindale-Hubbell certification procedures, standards and policies. Martindale-Hubbell is the facilitator of a peer review rating process. Ratings reflect the confidential opinions of members of the Bar and the judiciary. Martindale-Hubbell ratings fall into two categories - legal ability and general ethical standards.

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