KC Estate Works Oct 2017

The Works Everything you need to know for greater peace of mind.

October 2017



Be Aware of the Boom Pay Attention to the Details

Growing up as a kid, my favorite activity was spending an occasional Saturday on our rickety sailboat at Perry Lake. Aside from being able to fish, swim, and eat my weight in Planters Cheez Balls, sailing taught me valuable life lessons that are relevant today. One of the main principles you learn while sailing is to pay attention to the details. You must constantly watch the surface of the lake and your wind indicators to ensure you stay on course. If you get distracted and miss a wind shift, you are likely to be hit in the head by the boom. (Skipper’s Tip: The boom is the heavy bar at the bottom of the main sail. You really don’t want it to hit you.) Estate and elder law planning are exactly the same way. Without a clear understanding of all of the issues that affect later-life planning, families are susceptible to putting their assets in jeopardy. The process of inheritance can be laden with misunderstandings and family conflicts, resulting in extreme emotional stress and expenses for your loved ones if not properly addressed. This is why the planning process must entail so much more than just sorting out what to do with your assets when you pass away. Estate planning must also ensure that your long- term care needs are met, that your assets are distributed in a way that reduces potential family conflict, and that your values and life lessons are properly conveyed to your loved ones. Those who fail to comprehensively address all of these issues may be blindsided in painful ways. One of the best parts of my job is that it gives me the ability to sit down with my clients and do some teaching. Once you are aware of all the issues that may arise,

you can make informed legal and financial decisions for the future. Proper estate planning is all about understanding your options, knowing the potential threats, and doing some ongoing maintenance to course correct as needed. Because education is so important to the estate planning process, we will begin hosting workshops in the near future to help our existing and prospective clients better understand the complexities of elder care and estate planning. Stay tuned to future newsletters and our website, kcestateworks. com, for more details. In the meantime, if you have any questions about your existing estate plan, or if you know of any family or friends in need of estate or elder care planning, please feel free to drop me a line. “The boom is the heavy bar at the bottom of the main sail. You really don’t want it to hit you.”

-John Thompson

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The choice of a lawyer is an important decision and should not be based solely upon advertisements.


Than Good?

Kids can be picky eaters. This is a fact recognized by parents and restaurants alike. This picky nature popularized the classic children’s menu featured at many restaurants around the country. These menus are virtually the same: chicken tenders, mac and cheese, grilled cheese, french fries, and so on. Kids’ menus are loaded with fried foods and cheap carbs.

Cara Natterson suggests kids eat what the rest of the family eats. For instance, let them indulge in the

Some parents love the kids’ menu. It makes deciding on food easier. Or, at least, that’s what we tell ourselves. Kids’ menus are populated with foods practically every kid loves. But they have a dark side. Aside from poor nutrition, the kids’ menu changes the family dynamic.

ever let your kid eat from the children’s menu at restaurants and never, ever, ever make your kid special food to allow them to avoid whatever the family is eating.” Why? During his “Alton Brown Live!” tour, he explained that it comes down to control. By giving kids the option of the children’s menu, you relinquish culinary control to your kids. The next time you go out as a family or you make a delicious meal at home, they are more likely to demand “their” food. This is a habit a child can quickly adopt — and a habit that’s tough to break. Kids are picky eaters because, as parents and adults, we let them be picky eaters. We perpetuate bad habits. But it doesn’t have to be this way. In a Mom.me article, Dr.

appetizer menu, then build up to the entrée menu and let them share and sample your food. Encourage culinary exploration.

In an interview with Eater.com, television chef and host Alton Brown (who you may know from “Good Eats,” “Iron Chef America,” and “Cutthroat Kitchen”) said, “Never, ever, ever, ever,

When you encourage your kids to avoid the children’s menu, you give them an opportunity to expand their taste bud horizons. More importantly, it helps them make healthier choices that aren’t loaded with fat and empty carbs. Make going out to dinner a learning experience, and before you know it, the words “kids’ menu” will have disappeared from your family’s vocabulary.

Thank You!

At KC Estate Works, we are dedicated to your estate, tax, and business succession plans. We’re here to help you achieve peace of mind by getting your affairs in order and minimizing the burden placed on your loved ones. That’s why every referral you send our way makes a difference. We get to help even more people. And for that, thank you for your referrals and thank you for placing your trust in us not only to help you, but to help the people you care about. Your Referrals Make a Difference






For most of us, besides our home, our 401(k)s and IRAs represent

so it is very important that they are filled out correctly.

Not withstanding the simplicity of executing beneficiary designations, what people don’t often realize is that the IRS has also enacted special rules allowing certain types of beneficiaries to continue to defer taxes on the assets inside of the IRA over the beneficiary’s lifetime rather than a more immediate distribution, as is usually the case. These rules are commonly known as “IRA stretch-out rules.” The stretch-out rules can be a huge benefit to your beneficiaries, resulting in additional compounded growth and supplemental retirement funds. Unfortunately, the stretch-out rules enacted by the IRS are often incompatible with traditional estate planning techniques and objectives. An unwary estate planner can cost your beneficiaries thousands of dollars by failing to account for these rules. A well-constructed

our largest assets. The good news for these types of accounts is that the estate planning process is fairly painless. To direct where the funds in these accounts go upon your death, you will need to fill out a form know as a “beneficiary designation.” When properly filled out, the beneficiary designation form governs the dispersion of funds upon your death without having to go through the probate process. This is a HUGE plus! Beneficiary designations also trump any contrary provisions in your will or living trust,

estate plan should always weigh the tax- deferral opportunities for your beneficiaries against your overall estate planning objectives. Sometimes, these objectives will be incompatible, but many times, a solution can be crafted to account for your estate planning goals while capturing at least some of these deferral benefits. If you would like me to evaluate your current beneficiary designations and whether tax- deferral opportunities are available to your beneficiaries, please feel free to contact my office to set up an appointment.


Laugh Out Loud


4 teaspoons olive oil, divided 2 teaspoons grated orange rind 1 tablespoon fresh orange juice

8 (4-ounce) lamb rib chops, trimmed 1 teaspoon kosher salt 1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper

3 tablespoons balsamic vinegar

• •

Cooking spray


1. Combine 1 tablespoon olive oil, rind, and juice in a large zip-top plastic bag. Add lamb to bag; turn to coat well. Let stand at room temperature for 10 minutes. Remove lamb from bag and add salt and pepper. 2. Heat a large grill pan over medium-high heat. Coat pan with cooking spray. Add lamb and cook 2 minutes each side. 3. Place vinegar in a small skillet over medium-high heat; bring to a boil. Cook 3 minutes or until vinegar is syrupy. Drizzle vinegar and remaining teaspoon oil over lamb.

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Recipe courtesy of CookingLight.com.


5350 College Blvd Overland Park, Kansas 66211

I nside T his I ssue

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Be Aware of the Boom

Do Kids’ Menus Do More Harm Than Good? Your Referrals Make a Difference


Retirement Benefits Orange-Balsamic Lamb Chops


Is This the Most Bizarre Tragedy in History?

Is the Great Chicago Fire History’s Most Bizarre Tragedy?

By the time the last flame of the Great Chicago Fire fizzled out on October 10, 1871, 300 people were dead, a third of Chicago’s population were homeless, and 4 square miles of city were destroyed. Reflecting on the disaster begs the question, was it the most bizarre tragedy ever? By October, 1871, Chicago only had 1 inch of rain all year, which is far less than the annual average of 35 inches. While the exact cause is unclear, historians commonly accept that a cow belonging to a Mrs. O’Leary started the fire in a barn on DeKoven Street by kicking over a lantern. Firemen responded immediately, but a watchman sent them to the wrong place by mistake, giving the unusual Southwest winds

time to send the fire roaring toward the heart of the city. Most of Chicago’s buildings were made of wood, and the newly developed tar on the rooftops was incredibly flammable.

halting the city’s water supply. By

the time the fire died over a day later, 73 miles of roads and $4 billion

(in 2017 dollars) of

As the fire grew, the firefighters hoped the Chicago River would be a natural firebreak, but the city’s riverside had recently gained more lumber and coal yards, causing the fire to jump the river. As the air over the city overheated, it came into contact with cooler air, and a spinning fire tornado developed. After the fire jumped the river, a burning piece of timber lodged on the roof of the city’s waterworks building, destroying it and

property were destroyed.

All this came about because of a cow, a drought, a bad watchman, some short-lived building materials, and a literal fire tornado. Modern safeguards wouldn’t allow this to happen today, which is very fortunate. If the disaster happened the same way today, it wouldn’t displace 1,000 people; it would displace 1 million.



The choice of a lawyer is an important decision and should not be based solely upon advertisements.

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