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Wearable Technology: What Does It Mean For You?

Posted By Amie Mendoza, The Law Offices of Amie Mendoza, Friday, October 2, 2015

We are living in a digital world and that means a lot of info is out there about us. With great advancement in technology comes great advancement in identity theft and data breaches.

I haven't gotten an Apple Watch yet, but I know a lot of you have. Technology like this is completely awesome. However, being an informed consumer will help you avoid a great deal of heartache when it comes to protecting your privacy.

This week, I want to share with you some things to watch out for in your day to day technology use. 

Wearable Technology: What Does It Mean for You?
Recent headlines have been replete with data breach stories in the last few years. The number of companies and government agencies that have had their systems hacked is staggering. Names, addresses, Social Security numbers, credit card numbers, and other personal information have all been stolen by hackers from companies like Target, J.P. Morgan, Home Depot, and Sony, not to mention government agencies like the Internal Revenue Service and the United States Army.
What many people do not know is that they may be providing sensitive personal information to data miners on a regular basis through wearable technology. There is currently an explosion of activity in the development and marketing of electronic gadgets that people can wear to provide information on the go or to keep track of things. Read more....

Tags:  law  technology 

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Spring Clean Your Tech and Scrub Your Beneficiaries

Posted By Amie Mendoza, The Law Offices of Amie Mendoza, Friday, February 27, 2015

It's almost spring. Can you believe it? Time is ticking by so fast that we just got around to putting away the holiday decorations last week! As always, with spring comes thoughts of spring cleaning.

I am not really a big fan of large home organization projects. So, this year, I am going to focus my spring cleaning efforts on technology. This is a good time of year to tidy up the inbox, clean out the social media, and make sure you're backing up your data. This article on Pop Sugar suggests 31 Straightforward Ways to Spring Clean Your Tech.The best part is that you can do this sitting in your comfortable chair with a cup of coffee. Oh, and virtual dust doesn't make you sneeze.

To keep in the spirit of prep for spring cleaning, this week's article gives you some basic estate planning tasks that every adult can and should review.

Until Next Week,

The Basic Estate Planning Task EVERY Adult Needs to Review Today With the federal estate tax exemption at $5.43 million for 2015, many people think estate planning is unnecessary. But there’s one thing ALL adults over the age of 18 need to look at, regardless of estate taxes: beneficiary designations.

You would be amazed at how many people neglect this simple step, and their heirs and estate wind up paying for it – sometimes dearly. Ex-spouses inherit large sums every day, and high court rulings have upheld beneficiary designation forms, even if they were woefully out of date or even if the ex waived interest in a divorce decree.

Beneficiary designation forms trump a Will, too. Whoever is designated as the beneficiary on the account or plan form gets the money automatically, no matter what your Will says.

Here are some smart estate planning moves you should double check right now:
  • Submit a transfer on death (TOD) or payable on death (POD) form for all your bank and brokerage accounts, ensuring that your bank accounts and brokerage accounts would go where you want.
  • Review existing or create new beneficiary forms for your retirement accounts (IRAs, 401(k)s, Roth IRAs, etc.), pension plans, life insurance policies and annuities.
  • Review existing or create new beneficiary forms for any 529 college accounts you have established.

If you have established a Living Trust, ensure your Trust is the beneficiary of each of these accounts (be sure to talk with the lawyer who set up your Trust or call us for a review when it comes to retirement accounts, as we may decide to make your spouse the primary beneficiary of the retirement account or set up a special retirement account Trust).

If you have not established a Living Trust, make sure that you do not have minor children as beneficiaries on any of these accounts. If you do, call us to get that rectified. It is beyond critical that minor children not be designated as beneficiaries on any of these accounts.

If you don’t already have an estate plan – or have one that needs to be reviewed and updated – make 2015 the year you get this done. Call us at 602-772-3939 to schedule your Family Wealth Planning Session, where we can identify the best strategies for you to provide for and protect the financial security of your loved ones.


Tags:  estate planning  law  spring cleaning  technology 

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