Law Days & Lattes

Sidney Eckman Wheelan

Welcome to Law Days & Lattes, a unique blend of law, business, and a warm cup of wisdom. Your host, Sidney Wheelan, is not just an attorney but also a real estate investor and entrepreneur. This podcast is your one-stop source for legal insights, business strategies, and so much more. Whether you’re a seasoned professional, an ambitious entrepreneur, or someone seeking guidance, Law Days & Lattes is the podcast for you. We aim to empower our listeners with valuable business strategies and insights into navigating the legal landscape. But we’re not just about law and business. We believe in living a well-rounded life, so we’ll also touch on topics related to lifestyle, finance, health, fitness, and travel. After all, a well-lived life encompasses so much more. Join us on this journey as we explore the various facets of life over a warm cup of wisdom. www.wheelanlaw.com read less
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Episodes

Car Insurance Demystified
3d ago
Car Insurance Demystified
Episode 21: Car Insurance DemystifiedHost: Sidney WheelanTopic: Essential Car Insurance CoveragesKey points:Car insurance protects you financially after a collision.There are many coverages, but four are essential.Liability coverage: Covers injuries/damages you cause to others (required by most states).Minimum limits may not be enough. Consider buying more protection.Uninsured motorist coverage: Covers you if hit by a driver with no insurance.Minimum limits may not be enough. Consider buying more protection.Underinsured motorist coverage: Covers you if hit by a driver with not enough insurance to cover your damages.Not mandatory but recommended.Understand your policy limits and step-down provisions.Medical payments coverage (Med Pay): Covers medical bills for anyone injured in your car, regardless of fault.Relatively inexpensive and helpful for passengers without health insurance.Call to action:If you have questions, contact The Wheelan Law Firm, LLC.Subscribe to the podcast for new episodes.Leave a 5-star review and share the podcast with friends and family.WheelanLaw.comThis podcast episode contains general information for discussion purposes only. Each case is different and must be judged on its own merits. Missouri rules generally prohibit lawyers from advertising that they specialize in particular areas of the law.  This article should not be construed to suggest such specialization. Nothing on this site should be taken as legal advice for any individual case or situation.  This information is not intended to create an attorney-client relationship, and the listening or viewing of this podcast does not constitute an attorney-client relationship.  The choice of a lawyer is an important decision and should not be based solely upon advertisements.
15 Tips to a Strong Second Half
Jul 8 2024
15 Tips to a Strong Second Half
Episode 20 - 15 Tips to a Strong Second HalfHost: Sidney WheelanSponsored by: The Wheelan Law Firm, LLC of Moberly, Missouri Welcome back to Law Days and Lattes!This episode is your mid-year reminder to take charge and make the most of the remaining six months. Host Sidney Wheelan shares 15 actionable tips to strengthen your finances, healthcare, and legal matters.Here are some key takeaways:Estate Planning: Update your existing plan or create a new one. A simple will might not be enough. Consider a Revocable Trust for more flexibility.Important Documents: Ensure your healthcare power of attorney and other crucial documents are accessible to loved ones.Family Communication: Talk to your parents about their aging care needs and discuss your business plans with your family.Financial Planning: Review your retirement plan, life insurance beneficiaries, and update your insurance coverage (health, car, home).Car Insurance: Make sure you have underinsured motorist coverage and medical payment coverage (Med Pay).Bonus Tip: Take care of yourself! You can't be successful if you're not healthy.Call to action:If you have questions, contact The Wheelan Law Firm, LLC.Subscribe to the podcast for new episodes.Leave a 5-star review and share the podcast with friends and family.WheelanLaw.comThis podcast episode contains general information for discussion purposes only. Each case is different and must be judged on its own merits. Missouri rules generally prohibit lawyers from advertising that they specialize in particular areas of the law.  This article should not be construed to suggest such specialization. Nothing on this site should be taken as legal advice for any individual case or situation.  This information is not intended to create an attorney-client relationship, and the listening or viewing of this podcast does not constitute an attorney-client relationship.  The choice of a lawyer is an important decision and should not be based solely upon advertisements.
Wrongful Death Explained
Jun 28 2024
Wrongful Death Explained
Episode 19 - Wrongful Death ExplainedHost: Sidney WheelanSponsored by: The Wheelan Law Firm, LLC of Moberly, Missouri This episode covers:What is a wrongful death claim?Elements of a wrongful death claim:Duty of careBreach of dutyCausationDamagesEligibility to fileTime limits for filing wrongful death claims (Missouri specific)Common scenarios for wrongful death claimsThe process of filing a wrongful death claimCompensation for wrongful death claims (Missouri specific)Key takeaways:Wrongful death claims arise when someone dies due to another person or entity's negligence, recklessness, or misconduct.To win a wrongful death claim, you must prove the defendant owed a duty of care to the deceased, breached that duty, and the breach caused the death.Damages in wrongful death claims can include financial losses, non-economic losses (loss of companionship, emotional suffering), and in some cases, punitive damages.In Missouri, spouses, children, parents, siblings, or a court-appointed representative can file a wrongful death claim.There is a 3-year time limit to file a wrongful death claim in Missouri (with some exceptions).Common scenarios for wrongful death claims include medical malpractice, car accidents, workplace accidents, defective products, and criminal acts.An attorney experienced in wrongful death claims can help investigate the case, gather evidence, and pursue compensation for your loss.Compensation for wrongful death claims can come from insurance proceeds, the defendant's assets, or the Missouri Tort Victims Compensation Fund.Call to action:If you have questions about wrongful death claims, contact The Wheelan Law Firm, LLC.Subscribe to the podcast for new episodes.Leave a 5-star review and share the podcast with friends and family.WheelanLaw.comThis podcast episode contains general information for discussion purposes only. Each case is different and must be judged on its own merits. Missouri rules generally prohibit lawyers from advertising that they specialize in particular areas of the law.  This article should not be construed to suggest such specialization. Nothing on this site should be taken as legal advice for any individual case or situation.  This information is not intended to create an attorney-client relationship, and the listening or viewing of this podcast does not constitute an attorney-client relationship.  The choice of a lawyer is an important decision and should not be based solely upon advertisements.
Elections -- Campaigns and Convictions
Jun 21 2024
Elections -- Campaigns and Convictions
Host: Sidney WheelanSponsor: Wheelan Law Firm of Moberly, MissouriContact: WheelanLaw.comEpisode Number: 18Title: Elections--Campaigns and ConvictionsSummary: Sidney discusses the intricacies of running for political office, voting regulations, and recent legal challenges involving political candidates.Key Topics Covered Campaign Season ObservationsSidney shares thoughts on the current campaign season, sign wars, ice cream socials, and political fundraisers.Emphasizes the importance of participating in the political process by being informed and voting.Running for Office: Qualifications and ProceduresBasic Qualifications:Age requirements for various officesResidency requirementsCitizenship statusDisqualification Criteria:Criminal convictionsFiling Procedures:Filing deadlines and the importance of adhering to themFiling feesCampaign Finance Rules:Registering a campaign committeeAppointing a treasurer and filing campaign finance reportsContribution limits and disclosure requirementsPenalties for non-complianceEthical Guidelines and Conduct:Rules governing campaign behavior and the use of public resources for campaigningConflict of interest and transparency rulesMissouri Election Resources:Missouri Secretary of State Website: www.sos.mo.govVoter registrationHow to register to voteElection securityPolling place informationInformation for election candidates and poll workersFederal Election Resources:Federal Election Commission Website: www.fec.govCampaign finance dataHelp for candidates and committeesLegal resources, legislation, regulations, policy, and guidanceLegal Challenges in PoliticsRecent Case:Discussion of former President Trump's recent conviction and eligibility to run for office.Missouri Case: Cass County Clerk Jeff Fletcher vs. Herschel Young (Case No. SC100594)Young, previously convicted of a felony and pardoned, was disqualified from running for public office by the Missouri Supreme Court.Missouri law (Section 115.306, RSMo) clearly states that individuals who plead guilty to a felony are disqualified from elective office, even if pardoned.Voting Eligibility in MissouriIneligibility:In prison, detention, jail, or penal institutionConvicted of a felony or misdemeanor connected with votingOn parole for a felony conviction or convicted of a felonyDisqualified due to a court orderRestorative Requirements:Eligibility to register to vote is restored after completing a felony sentence, parole, probation, or being pardoned.Federal Voting Rules for Convicted CandidatesCandidates convicted of felonies can vote based on the laws of their registered state.Example: Former President Trump, registered in Florida but convicted in New York, retains his voting rights unless
Estate Planning Bloopers: Ten Common Mistakes
Jun 14 2024
Estate Planning Bloopers: Ten Common Mistakes
Estate Planning Bloopers: Ten Common MistakesIn this episode, you'll learn about ten common estate planning mistakes to avoid, including:Choosing the wrong executor/personal representative.Naming the wrong agent on your power of attorney or trustee on your trust.Not funding your trust properly.Overcomplicating your estate plan.Relying solely on a will.Making mistakes with beneficiary designations.Naming too many beneficiaries on a beneficiary deed.Making someone a joint owner on your bank accounts.Making someone a joint owner on your real estate.Not having your real estate deeds prepared by an experienced attorney.Estate planning tips:Talk to an experienced estate planning attorney.Have someone you trust review your estate planning documents.Update your estate plan as your life changes.Call to action:Subscribe to the podcast to be notified about new episodes.Give the podcast a five-star review and share it with friends and family.Contact the Wheelan Law Firm for help with your estate planning. WheelanLaw.comThis podcast episode contains general information for discussion purposes only. Each case is different and must be judged on its own merits. Missouri rules generally prohibit lawyers from advertising that they specialize in particular areas of the law.  This article should not be construed to suggest such specialization. Nothing on this site should be taken as legal advice for any individual case or situation.  This information is not intended to create an attorney-client relationship, and the listening or viewing of this podcast does not constitute an attorney-client relationship.  The choice of a lawyer is an important decision and should not be based solely upon advertisements.
Mediation:  Could It Help My Legal Case?
Jun 7 2024
Mediation: Could It Help My Legal Case?
Episode 16: Mediation: Could It Help My Legal Case?Host: Sidney WheelanIntroduction:Welcome to episode 16! Today's topic is mediation as an alternative dispute resolution (ADR) method for legal issues.Understanding mediation can be crucial for anyone involved in a legal dispute.Mediation can save time, money, and stress compared to going to court.What is Mediation?A neutral third party (mediator) facilitates discussion between disputing parties to reach a settlement agreement.The mediator doesn't make binding decisions but helps with communication and exploring interests.Consider consulting with an attorney before and during mediation.It's important to have a collaborative mindset and be willing to compromise.Not all cases benefit from mediation, especially if parties are entrenched or unwilling to compromise.Courts may order mediation in some cases.The Mediation Process:Parties agree on a mediator with relevant experience and qualifications.Attorneys work with the mediator to arrange logistics and fees.Pre-mediation preparation includes confidential statements and information exchange.During mediation, the mediator facilitates discussion between separate rooms and works towards an agreement.Benefits of Mediation:Cost-effective: Saves money on legal fees and avoids prolonged litigation costs.Timesaving: Resolves disputes faster than traditional court cases.Confidentiality: Discussions are private and not used in court if mediation fails.Control and Flexibility: Parties have more control over the outcome and can negotiate creative solutions.Preserves Relationships: Encourages a cooperative approach, especially valuable in family or business disputes.High Success Rates: Many disputes are resolved successfully through mediation.Tailored Solutions: Allows for personalized and flexible solutions compared to court rulings.Improved Compliance: Agreements are often better adhered to because parties are involved in creating them.Reduces Court Backlog: Lessens the burden on the court system.Additional Points:Parties have more control over the outcome and flexibility in negotiation.Examples of flexible solutions in mediation: payment plans, child custody arrangements.Mediation is suitable for various civil cases, family law matters, commercial disputes, and even preventing legal claims.Outcomes of Mediation:Settlement Agreements: If a resolution is reached, the agreement is written and signed by all parties.Impasse: If no agreement is reached, parties can still settle later or prepare for trial.Contact The Wheelan Law Firm, LLC for more information or legal help.Subscribe to be notified of new episodes!Leave us a review and share with family and friends!WheelanLaw.comThis podcast episode contains general information for discussion purposes only. Each case is different and must be judged on its own merits. Missouri rules generally prohibit lawyers from advertising that they specialize in particular areas of the law.  This article should not be construed to suggest such...
Understanding Jury Duty: A Civic Responsibility
May 31 2024
Understanding Jury Duty: A Civic Responsibility
Law Days and Lattes: Episode 15 – Understanding Jury Duty: A Civic ResponsibilityHost: Sidney Wheelan, Attorney at Wheelan Law Firm, Moberly, MissouriTopic: Importance of Jury Duty and Citizens' Role in the Legal SystemKey Points:Jury duty is a fundamental aspect of the American legal system, ensuring fair trials by a representative group of citizens.Serving on a jury is an educational experience that provides insight into court procedures and the importance of upholding the law.Diverse juries promote balanced decision-making through varied perspectives.Jury trials safeguard defendants' rights by ensuring judgment by impartial peers.Who is eligible for jury duty?U.S. citizenAt least 18 years oldProficient in EnglishNo disqualifying criminal convictionsJury Selection Process:Potential jurors are randomly selected from public records.Selection involves a process called "voir dire" where attorneys question jurors to assess suitability and impartiality.Jurors can be excused for valid reasons (medical issues, financial hardship).Serving on a Jury:Jury service typically lasts a few days to a few weeks.Jurors receive a small daily stipend (amount varies by location).Business casual attire is recommended for court appearances.Juror Responsibilities:Listen to evidence presented during the trial.Evaluate witness testimony.Deliberate with fellow jurors to reach a verdict based on facts and judge's instructions.Not discuss the case with anyone until deliberations begin.Inform the court of any emergencies that may affect their ability to serve.Additional Information:Employers cannot fire or retaliate against employees for jury duty.Jurors may or may not be allowed to take notes during the trial (varies by court).Disclose any connections to the case during "voir dire" to avoid impartiality issues.Conclusion:Jury duty is a vital part of a functioning democracy. By serving on a jury, citizens ensure a fair, transparent, and accountable legal system.Call to Action:Contact The Wheelan Law Firm, LLC for questions about jury duty.Subscribe for new episodes and leave a review.Share with family and friends!WheelanLaw.comThis podcast episode contains general information for discussion purposes only. Each case is different and must be judged on its own merits. Missouri rules generally prohibit lawyers from advertising that they specialize in particular areas of the law.  This article should not be construed to suggest such specialization. Nothing on this site should be taken as legal advice for any individual case or situation.  This information is not intended to create an attorney-client relationship, and the listening or viewing of this podcast does not constitute an attorney-client relationship.  The choice of a lawyer is an important decision and should not be based solely upon advertisements.
Mid-Year Tax Planning for Entrepreneurs
May 24 2024
Mid-Year Tax Planning for Entrepreneurs
Episode 14: Mid-Year Tax Planning for EntrepreneursHost: Sidney WheelanSponsor: Wheelan Law Firm of Moberly, MissouriKey takeaways:This episode focuses on tax planning strategies for entrepreneurs, specifically those related to business structures, retirement accounts, and health savings accounts (HSAs).Business structures:LLCs are popular for startups due to their simplicity and pass-through taxation (profits/losses pass through to owners' personal tax returns).S corporations can be beneficial for tax savings on self-employment taxes, but come with additional complexities and limitations.You can potentially combine the advantages of LLCs (ease of management) with S corporations (tax benefits) by electing S corp tax treatment for your LLC.Retirement accounts:Traditional IRAs, Roth IRAs, 401Ks, Solo 401Ks, SEP IRAs, and SIMPLE IRAs are all explored, with contribution limits and tax advantages explained for each.Choosing the right retirement account depends on your individual circumstances and business structure.Health savings accounts (HSAs):HSAs offer tax-deductible contributions, tax-free growth on earnings, and tax-free withdrawals for qualified medical expenses.To be eligible for an HSA, you must be enrolled in a high-deductible health plan.HSAs can be a powerful tool for saving for medical expenses in retirement.Call to action:Review your previous tax returns and explore ways to reduce your taxable income for the current year.Consider the strategies discussed in this episode, such as restructuring your business or setting up retirement accounts.Share your own tax planning strategies with the host.Contact information:Contact The Wheelan Law Firm, LLC for more information or legal help.Subscribe to be notified of new episodes!Leave us a review and share with family and friends!WheelanLaw.comThis podcast episode contains general information for discussion purposes only. Each case is different and must be judged on its own merits. Missouri rules generally prohibit lawyers from advertising that they specialize in particular areas of the law.  This article should not be construed to suggest such specialization. Nothing on this site should be taken as legal advice for any individual case or situation.  This information is not intended to create an attorney-client relationship, and the listening or viewing of this podcast does not constitute an attorney-client relationship.  The choice of a lawyer is an important decision and should not be based solely upon advertisements.
Advice for New Graduates
May 17 2024
Advice for New Graduates
Advice for New GraduatesLifelong LearningGraduates should understand their education is just the beginning and lifelong learning is essential.Asking questions is encouraged, and as knowledge grows, so does the ability to ask insightful questions.Recognizing Red FlagsLearning to identify potential problems allows graduates to react effectively and minimize negative consequences.Legal Rights and ResponsibilitiesUnderstanding contracts is crucial. Always read and ask questions before signing, especially regarding employment, housing, or services.Rental AgreementsKey points to consider: lease term, subletting, utilities, renter's insurance, and miscellaneous provisions. Don't hesitate to seek clarification if needed.Insurance PoliciesGraduates may be responsible for their own insurance for the first time.Understand the policies you are considering and ask questions about coverage options.Consider supporting local insurance agents.Purchasing a CarRead loan documents carefully. Understand the terms and implications of not meeting payment obligations.Avoid excessive payments and unnecessary add-ons.Repossession doesn't eliminate your loan debt.Student LoansGraduates will likely have student loans to repay.Understand repayment options, including loan term, interest rate, and monthly payments.Be aware that student loans are typically not dischargeable in bankruptcy.Home Loans (brief overview)Seek legal advice before signing any home purchase contracts.Find a reputable realtor to assist you.Schedule inspections and consider property surveys.Understand loan terms, down payment requirements, interest rates, and potential property taxes and insurance costs.Knowing Your Workplace RightsFamiliarize yourself with labor laws, including minimum wage, overtime, and workplace safety regulations.Missouri is an "at-will" employment state, but there are protections against discrimination and harassment.Seek legal counsel if you experience discrimination or harassment.Non-Compete AgreementsThese agreements may limit your ability to work for a competitor after leaving your current job.New FTC rules propose banning non-compete agreements, but legal challenges may delay implementation.Seek legal advice before signing a non-compete agreement.Additional Legal TipsProtect your intellectual property (writings, art, inventions) with copyrights, patents, or trademarks.Be mindful of privacy laws when handling personal data.Stay informed about legal developments in your field.Consult with an attorney if you face a legal issue or are unsure about your rights.Call to ActionContact The Wheelan Law Firm, LLC for more information or legal help.Subscribe to be notified of new episodes!Leave us a review and share with family and friends!WheelanLaw.comThis podcast episode contains general information for discussion purposes only. Each case is different and must be judged on its own merits. Missouri rules generally prohibit lawyers from advertising that they...
Scam Alert!!  Senior Scams Exposed
May 11 2024
Scam Alert!! Senior Scams Exposed
Scam Alert!! Senior Scams ExposedHost: Sidney WheelanTopic: Protecting Seniors from ScamsSummary:This episode discusses common scams targeting seniors and offers tips to help families keep their loved ones safe.Key Points:Seniors are vulnerable to various scams, including grandparent scams, tech support scams, healthcare fraud, romance scams, lottery/sweepstakes scams, investment scams, home improvement scams, IRS impersonation scams, timeshare scams, and gift card scams.Scammers exploit seniors' trust, financial stability, and desire for companionship or assistance.How to Help Seniors:Encourage open communication about suspicious encounters.Secure their finances (consider power of attorney, fraud alerts, monitoring accounts, limiting access to large sums).Strengthen online security (antivirus software, two-factor authentication, phishing awareness, family code word).Establish trusted contacts (family member for financial assistance, contact info for authorities).Stay informed and vigilant (update on scams, encourage skepticism).Regular check-ins and support (emotional support, reassurance).Call to Action:Schedule regular check-ins with elderly loved ones.Be proactive in protecting them from scams.Contact us with any questions or to schedule a consultation.Subscribe and Share:Subscribe for new episode alerts.Give the podcast a 5-star review and share it with friends and familyWheelanLaw.comThis podcast episode contains general information for discussion purposes only. Each case is different and must be judged on its own merits. Missouri rules generally prohibit lawyers from advertising that they specialize in particular areas of the law.  This article should not be construed to suggest such specialization. Nothing on this site should be taken as legal advice for any individual case or situation.  This information is not intended to create an attorney-client relationship, and the listening or viewing of this podcast does not constitute an attorney-client relationship.  The choice of a lawyer is an important decision and should not be based solely upon advertisements.
Remarried With Children?  Estate Planning Tips for Blended Families
May 3 2024
Remarried With Children? Estate Planning Tips for Blended Families
Estate Planning Tips for Blended FamiliesHost: Sidney WheelanTopic: Estate Planning for Blended FamiliesKey Points:Blended families: Defined as families formed when individuals with children from previous relationships come together. Examples include remarried couples with children, widowed parents with children remarrying, etc.Importance of estate planning for blended families:Protects loved ones by ensuring assets are distributed according to wishes.Avoids potential conflicts among family members regarding inheritance.Provides for minor children in case of a parent's passing.Preserves family harmony by addressing potential issues beforehand.Key considerations for estate planning:Open communication: Discuss wishes and concerns with all family members involved, including adult children if applicable.Update legal documents: Regularly review and update wills, trusts, and beneficiary designations to reflect current family situation.Equal vs. Equitable distribution: Decide whether to distribute assets equally or consider each child's needs and circumstances.Establishing trusts: Useful for managing assets and ensuring they are distributed according to your wishes.Trusts can be designed to:Control distribution schedules.Minimize risk of mismanagement by young beneficiaries.Provide tax benefits.Avoid probate.Recommendations:Be thorough and involve your spouse (and potentially former spouse) in the planning process.Consider professional guidance to navigate complexities.Additional Points:Prenuptial/postnuptial agreements can be valuable for blended families.Consider the possibility of future remarriage or divorce when creating an estate plan.Life insurance can provide financial support to surviving family members.Call to Action:Subscribe for new episode alerts.Leave a five-star review and share the episode with others.Contact us with any questions or to schedule a consultation.WheelanLaw.comThis podcast episode contains general information for discussion purposes only. Each case is different and must be judged on its own merits. Missouri rules generally prohibit lawyers from advertising that they specialize in particular areas of the law.  This article should not be construed to suggest such specialization. Nothing on this site should be taken as legal advice for any individual case or situation.  This information is not intended to create an attorney-client relationship, and the listening or viewing of this podcast does not constitute an attorney-client relationship.  The choice of a lawyer is an important decision and should not be based solely upon advertisements.
What do I do NOW?  Advice for the newly Widowed
Apr 26 2024
What do I do NOW? Advice for the newly Widowed
Losing a spouse is a heartbreaking experience. This episode offers compassionate legal guidance for those who are recently widowed.In this episode, you will learn:How to take care of yourself emotionally during this difficult time.What immediate legal steps to take after your spouse's death.The importance of estate planning to avoid probate.Different options for avoiding probate, such as revocable living trusts and beneficiary deeds.The potential drawbacks of joint ownership of property.What happens if your spouse dies without a will.Key points:Take time to grieve. Don't rush into legal decisions.If you have a revocable living trust, your assets likely avoid probate.Jointly owned property passes to the surviving owner but may be accessible to creditors or future spouses.Wills require probate but can specify how assets are distributed.If your spouse dies without a will, state law dictates asset distribution.Call to Action:Contact The Wheelan Law Firm for a consultation if you have questions.Share this episode with anyone going through the loss of a spouse.Subscribe for more legal advice and guidance.Quotes:"There are very few things in the legal world that are emergencies. Take time to get your bearings. Take time to manage the funeral arrangements and take time to grieve with your family and celebrate the life of your spouse..." (Sidney Wheelan)"Revocable living trusts are one of the most important and comprehensive estate planning tools in our toolchest today, and they have many advantages." (Sidney Wheelan)"The sooner you and your spouse prepare for the inevitable death of the first spouse, the more prepared you and your loved ones will be and there will be less stress for you as the surviving spouse during a very stressful and sometimes very lonely time." (Sidney Wheelan)Contact Information:Please feel free to Contact Us to learn how we can help.WheelanLaw.comThis podcast episode contains general information for discussion purposes only. Each case is different and must be judged on its own merits. Missouri rules generally prohibit lawyers from advertising that they specialize in particular areas of the law.  This article should not be construed to suggest such specialization. Nothing on this site should be taken as legal advice for any individual case or situation.  This information is not intended to create an attorney-client relationship, and the listening or viewing of this podcast does not constitute an attorney-client relationship.  The choice of a lawyer is an important decision and should not be based solely upon advertisements.
Building a Better Tomorrow -- Leaving a Legacy
Apr 19 2024
Building a Better Tomorrow -- Leaving a Legacy
Episode 9: Building a Better Tomorrow - Leaving a LegacyHost: Sidney WheelanThis episode explores the concept of legacy building through community service, charitable giving, and estate planning.Key Points:Legacy giving goes beyond financial impact; it's about leaving a lasting impression that inspires others.There are many ways to give back, including volunteering, donating time or money, and sharing your talents.Charitable giving through estate planning allows you to designate a portion of your assets to causes you care about.Charitable giving reflects your values and passions.Consider setting up a scholarship fund or a fund to support a specific cause you care about.Examples:A client who set up an animal fund to ensure her pets were cared for after her death and also provided funds for spaying/neutering pets in the community.Setting up a scholarship fund to support students in a particular field of study or from underprivileged backgrounds.Call to Action:Get involved in your community.Donate to your favorite organizations and causes.Consider estate planning to leave a lasting positive impact.Contact Information:Please feel free to Contact Us to learn how we can help you support the people and causes you care about for generations to come.WheelanLaw.comThis podcast episode contains general information for discussion purposes only. Each case is different and must be judged on its own merits. Missouri rules generally prohibit lawyers from advertising that they specialize in particular areas of the law.  This article should not be construed to suggest such specialization. Nothing on this site should be taken as legal advice for any individual case or situation.  This information is not intended to create an attorney-client relationship, and the listening or viewing of this podcast does not constitute an attorney-client relationship.  The choice of a lawyer is an important decision and should not be based solely upon advertisements.
Is the Nursing Home going to take My House?
Apr 12 2024
Is the Nursing Home going to take My House?
Episode 8 - Is the Nursing Home Take My House?Host: Sidney Wheelan, Elder Law AttorneyTopic: Paying for Nursing Home CareKey Points:Average cost of nursing home care in Missouri: $5400 - $6000 per month (varies by location, amenities, level of care)Options for paying: Long-term care insurance, MedicaidMedicaid eligibility: Income and asset limitsAsset limits:Excluded assets: house, car, prepaid burial planMust spend down most assets to qualify ($5000 limit)Some income-producing property may be allowedSelling your house: Not required to qualify for Medicaid, but may be necessary if you can't afford ongoing expenses.Nursing home can't take your house while you're alive.State may place a lien on your estate after death to recover Medicaid costs.Don't give away assets to qualify for Medicaid. There's a "five-year look-back rule" for asset transfers.Protections for spouses: Healthy spouse can keep some assets and income.Tips for preparing financially:Consider long-term care insurance (earlier is cheaper)Pay down debt, make home improvements, buy a prepaid burial plan (legitimate ways to reduce assets)Consult an estate planning attorney for personalized strategiesDisclaimer:Medicaid rules can change.Seek professional advice for accurate and up-to-date information.WheelanLaw.comThis podcast episode contains general information for discussion purposes only. Each case is different and must be judged on its own merits. Missouri rules generally prohibit lawyers from advertising that they specialize in particular areas of the law.  This article should not be construed to suggest such specialization. Nothing on this site should be taken as legal advice for any individual case or situation.  This information is not intended to create an attorney-client relationship, and the listening or viewing of this podcast does not constitute an attorney-client relationship.  The choice of a lawyer is an important decision and should not be based solely upon advertisements.
Navigating Probate
Apr 5 2024
Navigating Probate
Law Days and Lattes: Episode 7 - Navigating ProbateHost: Sidney WheelanTopic: Probate Process in MissouriIntroduction:Explains the importance of avoiding probate if possible.Discusses what to do if there is no estate planning and probate is necessary.What is Probate?Court-supervised process of transferring legal ownership of a deceased person's property (decedent) to their heirs or beneficiaries.Ensures creditors are paid and property is distributed correctly.Key Terms:Claim: Debt owed by the decedent at death (medical bills, credit cards, etc.)Claimant: Creditor who files a claim against the estate.Devisee: Person named in a will to receive specific property.Distributee: Person entitled to receive a share of the estate through probate.Heir: Person entitled to inherit property if the decedent died without a will (intestate).Letters of Administration: Court order appointing a personal representative for an intestate estate.Letters Testamentary: Court order appointing a personal representative for a testator's (person who wrote a will) estate.Personal Representative: Person appointed by the court to manage the decedent's estate (executor or administrator).Probate Estate: Real and personal property owned by the decedent that goes through probate.Publication: Notice published in a newspaper about the probate process.Testate: Having a will.Is Probate Necessary?Yes, unless the decedent has no probate assets.Avoiding Probate:Giving property away while aliveLiving trustsJoint accounts with right of survivorshipPay-on-death (POD) or transfer-on-death (TOD) designationsLife insurance or retirement account beneficiariesHow Does Probate Work?Personal representative manages the estate during administration.Debts, claims, and expenses are paid.Remaining assets are distributed to heirs or beneficiaries according to the will or Missouri law (intestacy).Minimum time to close an estate is approximately six months and ten days.Rights of Creditors and Collection of Debts:Probate court oversees claims submitted by creditors.Personal representative collects debts owed to the decedent.Claims are paid before distributions to heirs or beneficiaries.Taxes Payable After Death:Federal and state taxes may need to be paid before closing the estate.Expenses of Probate:Bond premiumsPublication costsCourt costsPersonal representative and attorney feesEstablishing Title to Real Estate:Probate clarifies ownership of real estate owned by the decedent.Heirs or devisees may need court approval to sell the property.Rights of a Surviving Spouse in Missouri (Intestate):Receives one-half of the estate.If children exist, spouse receives the first $20,000 and then half of the remaining assets.Entitled to certain exempt property and allowances.Rights of a Surviving Spouse with a Will:May elect to receive a statutory share instead of what's stated in the will.Cannot be completely...
Guardianships & Conservatorships
Mar 29 2024
Guardianships & Conservatorships
Host: Sidney WheelanEpisode Title: Guardianships and ConservatorshipsSponsor: The Wheelan Law Firm of Moberly, MissouriMain Points:Guardianships and conservatorships are legal proceedings to protect the rights and well-being of vulnerable individuals.Guardians make personal and medical decisions for someone else (ward).Conservators make financial decisions for someone else (protectee).Guardianships can be for minors or incapacitated adults.Conservatorships can be for minors or adults.Guardianships and conservatorships are separate proceedings, but often needed together.There are temporary guardianships for emergencies.The court process involves a petition, hearing, and evidence.Limited guardianships address specific limitations.Guardians and conservators have legal duties and responsibilities.Guardians must act in the ward's best interest and avoid conflicts of interest.Guardians and conservators may need court approval for financial transactions.Guardians and conservators must file reports with the court.Additional Information:Missouri specific laws are mentioned throughout the episode.Listeners are encouraged to consult with an attorney for legal advice.WheelanLaw.comThis podcast episode contains general information for discussion purposes only. Each case is different and must be judged on its own merits. Missouri rules generally prohibit lawyers from advertising that they specialize in particular areas of the law.  This article should not be construed to suggest such specialization. Nothing on this site should be taken as legal advice for any individual case or situation.  This information is not intended to create an attorney-client relationship, and the listening or viewing of this podcast does not constitute an attorney-client relationship.  The choice of a lawyer is an important decision and should not be based solely upon advertisements.
Mind Your Business - Why an LLC is good for your business!
Mar 22 2024
Mind Your Business - Why an LLC is good for your business!
Host: Sidney WheelanEpisode Summary:This episode explores Limited Liability Companies (LLCs) as a business structure, highlighting the advantages they offer compared to other options like sole proprietorships. Key takeaways include:Limited Liability Protection: Protects owners' personal assets from business debts and liabilities.Operating Agreement: Essential legal document outlining ownership, management, and operational procedures. Seek legal counsel for creating this document.Management Flexibility: Choose member-managed or manager-managed structures.Pass-Through Taxation: Profits and losses pass through to owners' personal tax returns, avoiding double taxation.Simplicity in Operation: Less complex formalities compared to corporations.Flexible Ownership Structure: Can have various member types, including individuals, other businesses, and trusts.Versatile Profit Distribution: Profits can be distributed beyond just ownership percentages.Increased Credibility: Projects a more formal and established image.Ease of Formation: Generally, a straightforward process.Perpetual Existence: Business can continue despite ownership changes.Transferability of Interests: Allows members to transfer ownership.Important New Law:The Corporate Transparency Act (effective January 1, 2024) requires most LLCs and Corporations to report beneficial ownership information to FinCEN. Filing deadlines apply.Contact Sidney for further questions - mail@wheelanlaw.comAdditional Notes:This episode is a great resource for anyone considering starting a business, especially those interested in LLCs.The episode emphasizes the importance of seeking professional guidance for legal and financial matters.WheelanLaw.comThis podcast episode contains general information for discussion purposes only. Each case is different and must be judged on its own merits. Missouri rules generally prohibit lawyers from advertising that they specialize in particular areas of the law.  This article should not be construed to suggest such specialization. Nothing on this site should be taken as legal advice for any individual case or situation.  This information is not intended to create an attorney-client relationship, and the listening or viewing of this podcast does not constitute an attorney-client relationship.  The choice of a lawyer is an important decision and should not be based solely upon advertisements.
Tips for talking to your parents about Estate Planning
Mar 15 2024
Tips for talking to your parents about Estate Planning
Topic: Talking to Your Parents About Estate PlanningHost: Sidney WheelanKey Points:Why this conversation is important: Even though it can be difficult, discussing estate planning with your parents ensures their wishes are known and avoids potential conflict among family members.When to have the conversation: There's no perfect time, but don't wait until a crisis. Choose a calm and comfortable setting.Tips for approaching the conversation:Start by expressing your concern for their well-being.Find out what they've already done.Emphasize the importance of preventing family conflict.Consider including all family members in the discussion.Be prepared to address their concerns with empathy.What to discuss:Whether they have a will, trust, power of attorney, or healthcare power of attorney.Their wishes for their assets and legacy.A succession plan for a family business (if applicable).Additional Tips:Do your research on common estate planning terms.Ask open-ended questions to encourage them to share their thoughts.Consider involving a professional (estate planning attorney or financial advisor).Share your own positive experiences with estate planning (if applicable).Highlight the benefits of planning, such as peace of mind and avoiding probate court.Remember: This is an ongoing conversation. Schedule regular updates to keep the plan current.Call to Action:Invite your parents for coffee or a latte and have a conversation about estate planning!WheelanLaw.comThis podcast episode contains general information for discussion purposes only. Each case is different and must be judged on its own merits. Missouri rules generally prohibit lawyers from advertising that they specialize in particular areas of the law.  This article should not be construed to suggest such specialization. Nothing on this site should be taken as legal advice for any individual case or situation.  This information is not intended to create an attorney-client relationship, and the listening or viewing of this podcast does not constitute an attorney-client relationship.  The choice of a lawyer is an important decision and should not be based solely upon advertisements.
Wills – Your Ticket to Probate
Mar 8 2024
Wills – Your Ticket to Probate
Topic: Wills and Estate PlanningKey Points:We previously discussed probate and its purpose in settling estates. (Episode 1: Avoiding Probate!)This episode focuses on Wills and why having a Will, though requiring probate, is still valuable for estate planning.What is a Will?A last Will and Testament is a legal document outlining a person's wishes for their assets after death.It provides specific instructions on distributing your possesions.Why You Need a Will:Avoids intestacy: If you die without a Will, the state determines how your assets are distributed.You choose beneficiaries: A Will allows you to designate who inherits your assets.Appoint a guardian for minor children: In the absence of a Will, the court appoints a guardian.What a Will Doesn't Do:Bypass probate: Assets in your sole name at death will still go through probate.Transfer certain assets: Assets with beneficiary designations (life insurance, retirement accounts) or jointly owned property won't be affected by your Will.Wills as Part of an Estate Plan:A Will is just one piece of your estate plan. Consider a Revocable Living Trust to avoid probate for some assets.Important Reminders:Wills must meet state-specific requirements for validity. (We discuss Missouri specifics).Keep your original Will safe and inform close family members of its location.Avoid making copies of your Will to prevent confusion about the original's status.Missouri Specifics:Age of majority to create a Will: Eighteen (18).Will signing requirements: Signed by the testator (or someone by their direction). Witnessed by two (2) disinterested people over eighteen (18).Self-proved Wills: witnessed signatures are accepted by the court without requiring witness testimony.Oral Wills (rare): only valid under specific circumstances with imminent peril of death.Divorce revokes any gifts to the former spouse in the will.Consult with an Estate Planning Attorney to ensure your Will is valid and complements your overall Estate Plan.wheelanlaw.comThis podcast episode contains general information for discussion purposes only. Each case is different and must be judged on its own merits. Missouri rules generally prohibit lawyers from advertising that they specialize in particular areas of the law.  This article should not be construed to suggest such specialization. Nothing on this site should be taken as legal advice for any individual case or situation.  This information is not intended to create an attorney-client relationship, and the listening or viewing of this podcast does not constitute an attorney-client relationship.  The choice of a lawyer is an important decision and should not be based solely upon advertisements.
Avoid Probate with a Revocable Trust!
Mar 1 2024
Avoid Probate with a Revocable Trust!
What is a Revocable Trust?A revocable trust is a legal agreement that allows you to manage your assets during your lifetime and distribute them efficiently after your death, bypassing the probate court process. Think of it as a framework that holds your assets and dictates how they should be handled in the future. You, the grantor (or settlor), transfer ownership of your assets to the trust, but you retain control over them while you're alive. You can even be the initial trustee, managing the assets within the trust just as you did before.Why Choose a Revocable Trust?Avoid probate: By keeping your assets out of your individual name, the trust bypasses probate court, saving your loved ones time, money, and emotional stress. Probate can be lengthy and expensive, and avoiding it offers significant benefits.Maintain privacy: Unlike wills, which become public during probate, trust documents are generally private, keeping your financial information confidential.Plan for incapacity: If you become incapacitated due to illness or injury, the successor trustee named in the trust can seamlessly take over the management of your assets, ensuring your financial affairs are handled according to your wishes.Flexibility and control: You retain the ability to modify or revoke the trust at any time throughout your life. This flexibility allows you to adapt to changing circumstances and ensure your plan remains aligned with your evolving needs and wishes.Tailored distribution: The trust allows you to specify exactly how and when your assets are distributed to your beneficiaries. This level of control ensures your wishes are carried out precisely, even if your family situation changes.Potential tax benefits: In some cases, revocable living trusts can help minimize capital gains taxes for your beneficiaries. However, it's important to consult with a tax professional to understand how this might apply to your specific situation.Taking Action:Schedule a consultation with an estate planning attorney: Discuss your individual needs and goals to determine if a revocable trust is the right fit for you. They can guide you through the setup process and ensure the trust is properly established and integrated into your overall estate plan.Gather information: Be prepared to openly discuss your family situation, assets, and wishes with your attorney. This information is crucial for crafting a trust that accurately reflects your desires.Stay Tuned:In future episodes, we'll delve deeper into other essential estate planning tools like wills and durable powers of attorney, exploring how they work alongside revocable trusts to create a comprehensive plan for protecting your loved ones and your legacy.Remember:While revocable trusts offer numerous advantages, they are not a DIY project. Consulting with a qualified estate planning attorney ensures your trust is set up correctly and functions effectively to achieve your estate planning goals.Disclaimer:  This podcast episode contains general information for discussion purposes only. Each case is different and must be judged on its own merits.  Missouri rules generally prohibit lawyers from advertising that they specialize in particular areas of the law.  This article should not be construed to suggest such specialization.  Nothing on this site should be taken as legal advice for any individual case or situation.  This information is not intended to create an attorney-client relationship, and the listening or viewing of this podcast does not constitute an attorney-client...