Your Health Care – Is It Healthy For You?

More and more people are questioning the current health care system and pointing out ways it doesn’t work. The top topics they mention usually have to do with its accessibility or its expense. Turn on any media at any time of the day or night and you’re likely to hear a lively debate about insurance companies, monthly payments and benefits.But are these even the right questions? Shouldn’t the top question be,”Is our health care system healthy for us?”Consider these facts about properly prescribed pharmaceuticals:· in the U.S. in 2011 doctors wrote 4.2 billion prescriptions – a little more than one per month for every man, woman and child;· 100,000 people die from adverse drug reactions each year;· another 200,000 per year are seriously injured from adverse reactions;· more than 4,000 people every day are admitted to hospitals due to adverse drug reactions;· properly prescribed pharmaceuticals are the fourth leading cause of death in the U.S.; when improperly prescribed pharmaceuticals are added, they rise to the third leading cause of death after heart attacks and cancer;· more that 50% of all medicines are not correctly prescribed, dispensed and sold;· 68 million prescriptions each year contain some sort of error.These statistics are directly about a system whose express purpose for existing is to deliver health care. Yet the people who became part of these statistics took their lives in their hands. Should accessing health care as it is now delivered actually be considered risky behavior? What is real health care, anyway?As more people ask these questions, they are finding answers that work for them. Perhaps this is why the organic food market is so robust and growing every day, and why more people consult ‘alternative practitioners’ such as herbalists, naturopaths, homeopaths, clinical nutritionists etc. when they have a health issue they want to resolve. They are looking for more than symptom suppression; they want to address causes. They are embracing evidence-based medicine (in other words, what works) rather than medical treatments based on a standard of practice set from double-blind, placebo-controlled research that can often take many years to complete – and many more years to change once established.The evidence-based approach collects information about what actually works in the clinical setting with actual people (rather than laboratory rats, for example). It is based on the fact that each element – each specific detail of what works for each person is part of a whole. For example, a headache and an infected, ingrown toenail, say, are seen as part and parcel of the same person, not two different and unrelated phenomena that should be addressed by two separate specialists, who probably don’t even talk to each other.The current medical care delivery system parcels out areas of specialty that can result in the consumer receiving recommendations and treatments that actually operate at cross purposes to each other, and then, more often than not, simply suppress or manage a symptom rather than addressing their cause(s).It’s for these reasons that more people are concluding that the Western medical approach as it’s currently constructed, is not a health care delivery system – instead it is a disease-management system.They are finding out that no insurance plan or medical benefit package is going to provide real health care. To receive that, they are stepping outside the system to consult practitioners who use a holistic, evidence-based approach.

Fifty Years of Technology Gone?

Technology has come a long way in the past fifty years. So if I told you something about all the great technology in the past fifty years I could go on forever!But instead lets just focus on some of the great technology we’ve enjoyed for the past fifty years, but has unfortunately disappeared much too soon due to the replacement of even newer technology.Let’s begin back around the late 1960′s, and into the 1970′s with the development of the simple 8 track cassette which was the new technology for listening to music at the time. In order to listen to the 8 Track Cassette you just had to have an 8 Track Player, and if you did you were all set to enjoy some music.Now personally I’m old enough to have been around during that great period of time to have seen the success, and the fall of the 8 Track player. Can you believe that I actually still have some of my old 8 Tracks from back at that time, but I’m not able to play them due to no longer having an 8 Track Player to actually play them on.But besides 8 Tracks there were also the 4 Track Cassettes which at the time was actually developed just prior to the 8 Track, but had a short life primarily because it had only two tracks, meaning that when you actually wanted to listen to a different song you would have to push a button on the player to change the track. But with the 8 Track you actually had four tracks which gave you a better selection of songs to choose from which was much more popular with people who bought them.As time proceeded much smaller Cassettes were on the market also for listening to music, but these cassettes were much more compact than the 8 Track Cassettes were. So now we had both the 8 Track Cassettes as well as the compact smaller Cassettes to enjoy listening to music, but as time continued on before you could say “8 Track Cassettes” they we’re gone! Leaving us with only the smaller Cassettes to listen to and to enjoy.So the only other format to listen to music at that time was the standard Photograph Record Player which of course had been around for many years. But as time passed by once again soon the Cassettes were no longer available as well. So now you would no longer have to worry about tapes breaking, or coming out of the cartridges with either the 8 Tracks, or the Cassettes alike, so now both Cassettes are gone. While we still had the Photograph Record Player to enjoy listening to music however it may just be until the next big technology came along, and so just what and when would that be?So that next big technology that allowed us to listen to music that sounded better than ever was the Compact Disc (CD), and this format was no longer a tape, but a disc. I personally can still remember the time when the local record store took all of the photograph records off their selves, and replaced them all with Compact Disc’s (CD) that was impressive for me because that was a major change from the Records that I grew up with, and had enjoyed playing for years, but were no longer available at what was one time called the “record store” as it had all changed now to the CD’s.Now for changing the players from the standard Record Player to the CD Player, and to enjoy listening to music was probably one of the biggest changes ever for the listening of music. This technology change from records to CD’s was a much better sound which eliminated the “pops” that records typically would have. So today we still have CD’s available, but with all the other means that people have to enjoy music on the internet, and elsewhere the CD’s are just not as popular as in the past, and perhaps the day may just not be too far off before it also becomes difficult to find them as well.Now what about the technology that brought us the Video Cassette Recorder (VCR)? Well first with the Video Cassette Recorder basically there were two different types of tapes that were available to use on your VCR. First there was the Beta Cassette, and latter there was the VHS Cassette. You can still purchase the VHS Cassette even though it may be very difficult to do so, but as for the Beta you can no longer find it due to the simple fact that the Beta Cassette was much smaller than the VHS Cassette was, and so as a result less storage space to record was available.The Video Cassette Recorder (VCR) was nice because you could record your favorite TV Show at any time, and then play it back to watch it at your convenience anytime you choose to do so. I personally recorded, and purchased many different Cassette’s that soon had grown into a large Video Cassette Library that I still in fact have. But are you aware that Beta, and VHS were both tapes as were the 8 Tracks, and the small Cassettes, and now that’s all old technology, and you may recall what happened to them. YES… they were replaced with the new technology just as the Video Cassette Recorder was.Now what new technology was going to be next? What great technology replaced the Video Cassette Recorder? The answer is the DVD Player! and it is still a current technology enjoyed today, but again has no tape because its simply a disc. Does this sound familiar? Of course the 8 Track Tape technology which changed to CD’s, and now with Video Tapes on the VCR changing the technology to DVD’s.So when you set down to enjoy music as well as watching movies all this technology may only be the beginning. And to fairly discuss all technology advances would require something short of writing a book. So I have focused only on the technology in which I have discussed in part due to it actually being a big part of my life as I grew up. So no matter if you personally experienced this technology or not I sincerely hope that you will find it all as fascinating as I did, and you will follow the continuous changes of technology as it is related to music, and movie entertainment.So now we can only wait for the next great technology change that gives us something we’ve never experienced before, in the mean time continue to follow the forever changes in technology.

4 Questions To Ask When Considering Horse Trailer Insurance

If you want to have peace of mind and deal with a crisis, we suggest that you have a horse trailer insurance. To make sure you have the right coverage, we suggest that you do your research and choose the right provider. Given below are some important questions that you may want to ask your agent when choosing the best horse trailer insurance. Read on to know more about horse trailer insurance.

1. Comprehensive coverage

This is a common misconception that most horse trailer owners may have. The thing is that the insurance covers only the liability, and it won’t provide coverage in case of theft or damage. Apart from this, there will be no coverage if the property of someone else gets damaged. In the same way, no claim can be made if a loss happens due to the will of god.

For your trailer protection, you may want to ask the insurance agent regarding collision and comprehensive coverage. The majority of insurance providers just include an endorsement in your current policy in order to extend the collision and comprehensive coverage. Please note: this will be a minor annual expense.

2. Trailer contents coverage

Your responsibility is to protect your trailer as well as the content inside it. You may want to talk to your insurance agent to find out if the contents of the trailer are also insured as damage to the contents may also cause a good deal of loss.

Also, you may want to keep in mind that the trailer content includes the gear and equipment, not the horse. If you want to insure your house as well, we suggest that you get in touch with a local insurance provider.

3. Break down

In life, we learn a lot of things the hard way. This may happen to you as well. For instance, some insurance providers may tow your vehicle right away if you have a breakdown; however, they will not provide roadside service.

Having a horse trailer on a highway side is stressful, especially if you have no way to get it transported to a safe area. Therefore, we suggest that you ask your insurance provider if your horse and trailer gets coverage for breakdown services. If they don’t provide this service, you may consider another insurance provider.

4. Coverage of the vehicle when parked

It’s true that most trailer problems happen on the road, but they may also happen anywhere. Therefore, you may want to find out if your insurance agent provides coverage in case of fire, storm damage, theft and fire, especially if you have parked your trailer somewhere.

Also, you may not want to forget asking whether you will get coverage if your trailer gets damaged on someone else’s farm or property.

So, if you have been thinking of getting horse trailer insurance policy, we suggest that you consider all of the relevant things. The thing is that you may want to get as much coverage as possible so you don’t end up suffering a lot of loss.

What Is An Irrevocable Life Insurance Trust Notes?

If you are starting your estate planning process, an ILIT (irrevocable life insurance trust) will provide peace of mind. If you have young beneficiaries or sizeable estate, the trust will be able to provide control over a life insurance policy.

The irrevocable aspect of the trust ensures that the creator or the grantor will not be able to change it after it is setup. ILIT is primarily used as an estate planning and financial planning tool to protect assets subject to high estate taxes.

What Do You Need to Know About an Irrevocable Life Insurance Trust?

A revocable trust enables the grantor to make changes to the trust. You will also be able to end the trust if you want to. An irrevocable trust will not allow any changes to be made after it is setup. Only beneficiaries will be able to change the trust.

Revocable trusts are more common as they offer flexibility to the trust creator. An irrevocable life insurance trust is a good idea if you want to save taxes.

A grantor will set up the irrevocable trust and fund it. Transfers and gifts are then made to the trust. Transfers and gifts are permanent. Changes not allowed to the trust and its funds after set up.

The trustee manages the trust. Distributions made to beneficiaries are also managed by the trustee. The trustee who manages the trust is different from the grantor.

Benefits of an Irrevocable Life Insurance Trust

Lower Estate Tax
Death benefits will not form part of the gross estate when you opt for an irrevocable trust. This means the benefits are not subject to federal and state estate tax.
The trust will also be able to cover debts and estate tax costs when the estate makes the purchases. The grantor will not be able to make the purchases as the estate is now part of the trust.

It is important to know that even though the estate is exempt from estate taxes, the beneficiary’s estate will be subject to such taxes. The tax burden shifts to the beneficiaries.

When ILIT is drafted properly, it helps provide liquidity. This will help pay estate taxes and other expenses and debts. It is done through a loan or purchasing assets from the estate of the grantor.

Lifetime gifts will help reduce the taxable estate. This is done by transferring assets into an irrevocable life insurance trust.

Protect Assets from Creditors
An irrevocable trust will be able to protect you from certain legal proceedings. Protect assets from creditors by setting up the trust.
The creditors, however, will be able to attach distributions made from ILIT.

Avoid Gift Taxes
The contributions by the grantor to the beneficiaries are considered gifts. If you want to avoid gift taxes, it is important that the trustee notifies the beneficiaries about the right to withdraw.
The letter notifies the beneficiaries right to withdraw for a 30-day period.

After the 30-day period, the trustee will be able to pay the life insurance premium using the contributions.

The transfer for the annual gift tax can be excluded as the letter makes the gift a present instead of future interest. This helps avoid the need to file a gift tax return.

Leaving Assets to Minors and Ensuring Responsibility
Minors are not equipped to handle large amounts of money and assets. An irrevocable trust will allow you to put restrictions in place to protect the assets.
Restrictions such as the beneficiaries reaching a certain age to gain access to the assets can be put in place. The creation of a trust will help ensure responsible behavior from adults or minors with reckless spending habits.

The trust is supervised by an appointed trustee. The assets will be distributed as per the grantor’s wish. This provides asset protection for the beneficiaries.

As ILITs are not owned by the beneficiaries, the assets are protected even if there is future litigation involving the beneficiaries.

Linking the assets to the beneficiary is difficult. This prevents creditors from accessing the assets.

Government Benefits
Trust beneficiaries receiving government aid (Medicaid or Social Security Disability Income) are protected with the proceeds received from a life insurance policy purchased by an ILIT.
The trustee will be able to control how trust distributions are used. This is done carefully so that it doesn’t obstruct the beneficiary’s entitlement to get government aid.

Legacy Planning
The generation-skipping transfer tax stipulates a 40% tax on transfers and gifts in trust. The tax is also applicable when the gift or transfer is made to unrelated persons more than 37.5 years younger to the donor.
Related persons who are more than at least a generation young than the donor will also be covered as per the tax provisions. Donors gifting assets to grandchildren instead of children is a common example.

ILIT will help the grantor leverage the generation skipping transfer tax exemption. Gifts to the trust are used to fund and buy the insurance policy.

As the death benefits proceeds are excluded from the estate of the grantor, multiple generations of the family (children, grandchildren, and great-grandchildren) will be able to benefit from the trust assets.

Downsides to an Irrevocable Life Insurance Trust

There are certain tax benefits that become applicable only when the grantor lives three or more years after transferring the insurance policy to the trust. IRS will start including the insurance proceeds if the period is less than that specified.
When ILIT purchases the insurance policy, you will be able to avoid a three-year period that is specified. The trust will have to fund to pay the premiums.
When you give the trust money to a policy it becomes subject to the gift tax. The gift taxes can be avoided if beneficiaries are sent letters notifying them that the money is not immediately accessible to them.
The biggest downside of ILIT is that it cannot be changed after it is established. You will have to relinquish complete control of assets. Apart from this dissolution of trust is not possible unless payment for premiums is not stopped.
When the beneficiaries receive the estate, they will have to pay sizeable taxes.
How to Setup an ILIT?
Setting up an ILIT is a complex process. Start the process by selecting a lawyer specializing in estate planning.

Before you draft the trust document you will have to take the following decisions:

Who will be the trustee of ILIT?
Who will be the beneficiary or beneficiaries of the proceeds of the insurance?
Will you be transferring an existing policy to the trust or buying a new life insurance policy?
Before you make these important decisions, it is advisable to give them a lot of thought. You will not be able to change any of these decisions after you set up an irrevocable trust.
ILIT is named as the beneficiary of the life insurance policy. This means the payment will go directly to the ILIT in the event of your death.

The beneficiaries will receive benefits without paying any estate or income taxes. Fund the trust for payment of the premiums. This ensures that the insurance policy doesn’t lapse.

Who Are the Beneficiaries of an ILIT?

The primary beneficiary of the insurance policy is ILIT. Death benefits are transferred into ILIT. These benefits are held in trust for the benefit of beneficiaries named in the trust documents.

If the proceeds of the trust are held for the benefit of the spouse, regular incremental payments are received instead of a lump sum amount. The incremental payments are not taxed.

What Are the Incidents of Ownership?

If the insurance policy is owned and retained by you, you will be able to change the beneficiaries or withdraw the cash value at any point. This means the tax authorities will include the proceeds of the insurance policy when calculating the estate value.

If the proceeds are high it will make the estate susceptible to estate taxes. This is possible when the estate is the beneficiary of the policy.

The policy will be an asset of the estate if it is owned at the time of death and even if children, grandchildren or great-grandchildren or someone else is named as beneficiary.

How to Dissolve an ILIT?

After an irrevocable trust is set up it cannot be undone. Premiums will need to be paid to keep the insurance policy in effect. If you want to dissolve the trust all that you need to do is to stop the payments for the premium.

The insurance policy will lapse if the premiums are not made.


An irrevocable life insurance trust is a good idea if you have a significant amount of assets and wealth and you want to protect it after you die. This will also help avoid creditors and high estate tax.

You do need to remember that ILIT may not be suitable for everyone. After you set up the trust, you will not be able to make any changes to it. Only beneficiaries of the trust will be able to approve any change to the trust.