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What is a Life Well-Lived?

What is a Life Well-Lived?

During the past two and a half months of lockdown, I’ve had a fair amount of time while walking the neighborhood or taking breaks from working at home to ponder life, and I’ve come to some interesting realizations. Here in Hawaii we’ve been fortunate...
THE SECURE ACT: Big Changes to IRA and 401k Rules

THE SECURE ACT: Big Changes to IRA and 401k Rules

On December 20, 2019, the Setting Every Community Up for Retirement Enhancement (SECURE) Act was signed into law by President Trump. The SECURE Act makes some really big changes to the way that retirement accounts must be distributed—especially after the original...
INTERNATIONAL ESTATE PLANNING: NON-CITIZEN SPOUSE

INTERNATIONAL ESTATE PLANNING: NON-CITIZEN SPOUSE

Last month I wrote my column on the basics of International Estate Planning. I explained the definitions of US Citizen, Non-resident Alien, and Resident Alien. The definition of a Resident Alien is different for Income Tax purposes than it is for Gift and Estate Tax...
FRAUDULENT STUDENT LOANS AND IDENTITY THEFT

FRAUDULENT STUDENT LOANS AND IDENTITY THEFT

FRAUDULENT STUDENT LOANS AND IDENTITY THEFT By: Ethan R. Okura Sometimes you can do everything right, but have everything go horribly wrong. Sometimes you do nothing at all, and still have everything go very wrong. In the United States, you’re supposed to be innocent...
AUTOMOBILES IN ESTATE PLANNING

AUTOMOBILES IN ESTATE PLANNING

Many of my past columns have focused on how to structure your estate plan to protect your home. I’ve discussed protecting your primary residence and other real property from probate through the use of revocable and irrevocable trusts, through joint ownership or...
TENANTS BY THE ENTIRETY FOR PERSONAL PROPERTY

TENANTS BY THE ENTIRETY FOR PERSONAL PROPERTY

By: Ethan R. Okura Back in December of 2009, my father, Sanford K. Okura, wrote an excellent article titled “Tenants by the Entirety.” It explained the pros and cons of holding property as “tenants by the entirety” as opposed to holding them in revocable trust(s). At...

INCOME TAXES and IRAs

By: Ethan R. Okura It’s that time of year again. No, not Valentine’s Day…and I’m not even talking about President’s Day. I’m talking about Taxes! Your personal income tax return isn’t due until April 15th, and if you’re like many people, you might file for an...

Estate Planning Update 2019

By: Ethan R. Okura Hawai‘i Herald Columnist Happy New Year! The following is a 2019 update on important numbers used in estate planning and Medicaid planning in Hawai‘i. How much money and property can a person have at death without paying estate taxes? At the end of...