Mind Your Own Business
March, 2024 - Issue #228
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courtesy of Shutterstock

Three Common Mistakes that Could Make your Trust Worthless
A trust is a very effective estate planning document. There are many options available to allow more people than ever to create a trust. These are the three most common mistakes that can cause a trust to fail.
Failure to Fund your Trust
For a trust to control an asset, the asset must be owned by the trust. This means retitling your house or bank account into the name of the trust. Failure to put your assets into your trust makes the trust an empty vessel and your estate will need to go through probate.
Failure to Name Successor Trustees & Beneficiaries
We all expect that our trustees and beneficiaries will be alive when we pass. Unfortunately, if they die before you, or even shortly afterwards, then it can take court action to name new trustees and beneficiaries, even when the family is not fighting.
Use of Ambiguous Language
Disputes can erupt if instructions are vague, generic or give too much discretion to the trustee. Beneficiaries may believe they are entitled to distributions when they are not. Some may even sue the trustee to have their interpretation of the trust terms enforced. A trust with specific directions and conditions is much more likely to have the outcome desired by the drafter and is much less likely to be challenged.
Law Attorney Michael Yeager 471-2177
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courtesy of Shutterstock

Reduce your Expenses with Wendy Collins Insurance Consulting Services' Free Insurance Reviews
For over 23 years, Wendy Collins has provided the Santa Clarita community with exceptional insurance products at an affordable price. The well-known insurance pro - who's been in the industry since college - built her agency "from scratch" and grew it into a brand synonymous with premier customer service.
"We built our relationship with Santa Clarita on trust by always taking the time to review the coverage our clients needed to identify an affordable solution," says Collins. "Our mission was to protect them while delivering excellent value. Unfortunately, the insurance industry continues to pass on rate increases to consumers and affordability has become a major issue."
That's why Collins made a major transition, recently opening Wendy Collins Insurance Consulting Services.
"I decided to go back to my beginning principles and once again offer my time, experience and knowledge to help consumers review their current insurance needs and also find avenues to make it affordable again," says the advocate.
"I have no vested interest with another company - I am not selling insurance," explains Collins. "My mission is to give back to the community that supported my small business for the past 23 years and once again offer them the ability to understand and review what they need, look at what they have and see if there is a more affordable option."
Schedule your entirely-free insurance review today.
Wendy Collins Insurance Consulting Services 296-2068

Are there too Many Cooks in your Marketing Kitchen?
You hired someone to send your emails. Another to post on social media for you. And, of course, you have teams for your SEO, websites, print advertisements, marketing tools, radio spots, reputation management sites and more.
There's nothing wrong with hiring specialists - and there's a lot right.
But a major problem arises when busy entrepreneurs and managers outsource their marketing needs without ensuring that one member of your team is managing messaging cohesion across platforms.
When everyone is "doing their own thing" without sticking to message, things can get messy - fast. And that means confused clients and missed opportunities.
And here's what's scariest about that scenario: You might not even know what "the message" should be. Here's a hint: it's not "promote our product or service."
Quality message management ensures that brand tone, language and culture is the same - and on point - everywhere; that there's a consistent calendar that's understood and enforced so that your business benefits from layered, cohesive messaging that's seasonally or campaign appropriate; and that your message meaningfully supports all your brand's goals.
Here's the first takeaway: If you have a bunch of marketers working for you, but no one strategizing your marketing, you're likely wasting resources and missing out on conversions.
And here's your second: A good marketing specialist can be great at their specialty - but unless their specialty is strategy, it's like asking a French-trained pastry chef to cook a slammin' Hawaiian barbecue and expecting a gourmet outcome.
Therese Edwards has taught marketing and public relations
at the university level for 23 years and has served Southern California small- and medium-sized organizations as a business strategist for over two decades. Have a marketing question?
E-mail her at

courtesy of Shutterstock (left)
courtesy of Shutterstock (left)

You don't have to Feel Bad about getting Divorced
by Denise Lite, Esq.

"I waited because I was so embarrassed to admit that my marriage was over." "I was worried what my parents would say." "I hated being married to my spouse, but I hated the thought of disappointing my kids even more."
In my family law practice, I hear phrases like that every day - but do you know what I also hear?
"My partner cheated - and gave me an STD." "I want my children to grow up in a house that's peaceful and happy - and that's not possible in this marriage." "I cry myself to sleep every night."
Most frequently, the reasons for delaying the divorce are based on what others might think or feel about the marriage, while the reasons for the divorce are rooted in deep, personal experiences that affect my clients' mental, physical and emotional health.
If you've been on the fence about divorce, I want you to ask yourself this: Are the reasons I'm holding back based on my own desires to try and fix my marriage and my hope that we can repair our relationship - or are they based on what others might think, feel and do if I file?
You've got one life. Please don't let others make you feel bad about living it on your terms. You deserve to feel safe, nurtured, loved and respected in your marriage - and no one gets to determine if those needs are being met or not but you.
Call to schedule a consultation with Certified Family Law Specialist Denise Lite.

Acura Integra Claims Automotive "Triple Crown"
The Acura Integra Type S, renowned for its high performance, has clinched the title of Performance Car of the Year, as bestowed by the editors of Road & Track. This accolade is attributed to its remarkable power, dynamic performance and a blend of premium features and refinement. Despite fierce competition from pricier and more potent rear-wheel drive coupes, the versatile five-door liftback secured the top position in the "Under $100k" category. The 2024 Road & Track Performance Car of the Year award is a valuable addition to the next-gen Integra's already-impressive collection of industry and media honors. Notably, it follows the distinguished 2023 North American Car of the Year and the Type S variant's 2024 Car and Driver 10 Best Cars award. This marks the second time Acura has been recognized with a Road & Track Performance Car of the Year. Setting itself apart, the Integra Type S offers a fresh interpretation of ultimate street performance tailored for the next generation of enthusiast drivers. It enhances Acura Precision Crafted Performance in the gateway segment, boasting 320 horsepower and the exclusive availability of a manual transmission in its class. Since its reintroduction to the Acura lineup in the 2023 model year, the next-gen Integra has swiftly become the top-selling model in the premium sport compact segment. Currently, it commands nearly 40 percent of sales in its class, more than doubling the sales of its closest competitor. The Acura Integra Type S, representing around 10 percent of the sales mix since its introduction last June, has played a significant role in this success.
Valencia Acura 255-3000
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