October 17 - 23, 2011 has been designated National Estate Planning Awareness Week. It is estimated that over 120,000,000 Americans are living with a chronic illness. Yet they may not have up-to-date estate plans and long term financial strategies to protect themselves or their families in the event of sickness, accidents, or untimely death. The purpose of Estate Planning Awareness Week is to encourage consumers to address these issues before they have a chance to negatively impact daily lives.
Chronic Illness Webinars During Estate Planning Awareness Week: Estimates are that 1 million Americans are living with Parkinson's disease, 24-35 million with COPD, over 2.1 million with Multiple Sclerosis worldwide, and 5.4 million with Alzheimer's disease. The goal of this webinar series on Estate Planning for Chronic Illness is twofold: To build knowledge amongst professional advisers as to how they can better serve clients living with chronic illness; and to educate and inform those living with chronic illness, their loved ones, and caretakers about proactive steps they can take to help themselves plan. In addition to presenting general chronic illness planning programs, these webinars will be targeted to specific chronic disorders in order to enhance their relevance and empower those living with that particular disease to better help themselves.
Monday October 17 Noon to 12:30 pm - 1:30 pm EDT
- The National Multiple Sclerosis Society sponsors a free consumer webinar "Estate and Financial Planning for those Living with Multiple Sclerosis." Presented by Martin M. Shenkman, Esq., author of Funding the Cure: Helping A Loved One with MS Through Charitable Giving to the National Multiple Sclerosis Society. Dr. Nicholas G. LaRocca, Vice President, Health Care Delivery and Policy Research of the National MS Society will join. Reserve at: https://www3.gotomeeting.com/register/126203022
Monday October 17 4:30 pm - 5:15 pm EDT
- The COPD Foundation sponsors a free consumer webinar "Estate and Financial Planning for those Living with COPD." Presented by Martin M. Shenkman, author of a forthcoming book Estate and Financial Planning for those living with COPD to be published by Demos Health. www.demoshealth.com. John Walsh, and Dr. Byron Thomashow of the COPD Foundation, will join. Reserve at: https://www3.gotomeeting.com/register/519876470
Tuesday October 18 12:30 pm - 1:15 pm EDT
- The Michael J. Fox Foundation for Parkinson's Research sponsors a free consumer webinar "Estate and Financial Planning for those Living with Parkinson's Disease." The program will be presented by Martin M. Shenkman, author of Funding the Cure: Charitable Giving to Help The Michael J. Fox Foundation for Parkinson's Research Find the Cure for Parkinson's Disease published by Demos Health. Seanna Bruno of The MJFF, will join. Reserve at: https://www3.gotomeeting.com/register/786382430
Tuesday October 18 2:30 - 3:30 pm EDT
Tuesday October 18 4:00 - 5:00 pm EDT
- - sponsors a free consumer webinar "Estate and Financial Planning for those Living with Alzheimer's Disease." The program will be presented by Martin M. Shenkman, CPA, MBA, AEP, PFS, JD, author of Estate Planning for People with a Chronic Condition or Disability, published by Demos Health. Ruth Drew, Director of Family and Information Services of the Alzheimer's Association, and Mary Bohmke, Director of Planned Giving for the Alzheimer's Association will both join. Reserve at: https://www3.gotomeeting.com/register/331440886
Wednesday October 19 1:00 - 2:30 pm EDT
- The American Bar Association RPTE sponsors a webinar for attorneys offering CLE credits "Estate and Financial Planning for Clients Living With Chronic Illness." Co-presented, Bernard A. Krooks, Esq. of Littman Krooks LLP, New York City, New York. To register link to: http://ambar.org/RP1TCI.
Wednesday October 19 3:00 - 4:30 pm EDT
- , formerly PESI Law & Accounting, is sponsoring a "The Care Managers Role in Estate Planning for Clients Living with Chronic Illness in 2011" webinar for professionals with 1.0 credits for accountants, enrolled agents and certified financial planners. (Attorneys: 1.0 CLE credits may be available in your state. Please contact email@example.com if you are interested in obtaining CLE credit in your state, time is limited. Several State CLE boards require 60 days in advance for approval for program.) This webinar features the following speakers: Martin M. Shenkman, CPA, MBA, JD; Marci Sadorf, RN, CMC and Stephanie Chong, LICSW, ASWCM. Registration link: http://foxmoor.inreachce.com/Details/Information/5c50af71-45ed-4a5c-a6be-06a9c12c5a0e . Use discount code :Shenkman20" for a $20 tuition reduction.
Thursday October 20 1200 -1:00 pm EDT
- The Ultimate Estate Planner, Inc. sponsors a teleconference call for estate planning professionals: "Estate and Financial Planning for Clients with Chronic Illnesses." presented by Martin M. Shenkman. Register at http://www.ultimateestateplanner.com/102011MS.html. Call 1-866-754-6477 for information.
Moderator: Hani Sarji, Esq., a writer at www.forbes.com will moderate each consumer webinar. See his blog on www.forbes.com about the webinars in advance of estate planning week.
NAEPC: The National Association of Estate Planners & Councils' ("NAEPC's") Education Foundation will encourage its members nationwide to reach out to consumers, especially those facing the challenges of chronic illness and disability. NAEPC will announce the consumer webinars on www.naepc.org and will host recordings of them on www.estateplanninganswers.org.
LISI (Leimberg Information Services, Inc.): LISI, one of the most respected online estate planning websites, will disseminate information to encourage its prestigious subscriber base to encourage their clients, especially those living with chronic illness or disability, to take advantage of these programs. See www.leimbergservices.com.
RV4TheCause.org (www.ChronicIllnessPlanning.org) provides clear and simple programs to help educate consumers faced by the challenges of chronic illness or disability make choices that will protect themselves and their loved ones from the vagaries of a highly unpredictable future.
RV4TheCause was founded by attorney Martin M. Shenkman, with offices in Paramus, NJ and New York City, and his wife Patti, who was diagnosed with Multiple Sclerosis in 2006. Their charity educates not only the individuals impacted by chronic illness or disability but the attorneys, accountants, financial planners, and insurance professionals serving them. Shenkman, who has more than 25 years of experience in his field, is a noted attorney, CPA and author who has devoted his career to helping those living with chronic diseases in coping with financial, tax, insurance, estate and other issues.
ABOUT THENATIONAL MULTIPLE SCLEROSIS SOCIETY
The National MS Society addresses the challenges of each person affected by MS. To fulfill this mission, the Society funds cutting-edge research, drives change through advocacy, facilitates professional education, collaborates with MS organizations around the world, and provides programs and services designed to help people with MS and their families move forward with their lives. In2010 alone, through its national office and 50-state network of chapters, the Societydevoted $159 million to programs and services that assisted more than one millionpeople. To move us closer to a world free of MS, the Society also invested $37 million to support 325 new and ongoing research projects around the world. The Society is dedicated to achieving a world free of MS. Join the movement at www.nationalMSsociety.org.
ABOUT THE MICHAEL J. FOX FOUNDATION
The Michael J. Fox Foundation is dedicated to ensuring the development of better treatments, and ultimately a cure, for Parkinson's disease through an aggressively funded research agenda. MJFF has funded almost $196 million in research to date. For more information visit www.michaeljfox.org.
ABOUT THE ALZHEIMER'S ASSOCIATION
The Alzheimer's Association is the world's leading voluntary health organization in Alzheimer care, support and research. Their mission is to eliminate Alzheimer's disease through the advancement of research, to provide and enhance care and support for all affected, and to reduce the risk of dementia through the promotion of brain health. Their vision is a world without Alzheimer's. Visit www.alz.org or call 800-272-3900.
ABOUT THE COPD FOUNDATION
COPD is an umbrella term for a group of lung diseases including emphysema, chronic bronchitis, refractory asthma, and bronchiectasis. The COPD Foundation, a not-for-profit 501(c)(3), was established to speed innovations to make treatments more effective and affordable, to undertake initiatives that result in expanded services for COPD'ers and to improve the lives of individuals affected by COPD and related lung diseases. The COPDF's activities focus on achieving these results through research, education and advocacy programs that will lead to prevention, and someday, a cure for this disease. http://www.copdfoundation.org/
SAMPLE COMMENTS FROM PARTNERING ORGANIZATIONS
"Marty has found a unique way in RV4TheCause to bring his expertise to those living with the challenges of MS and the financial advisors serving them. He provides the practical tools they need in being more effective resources for their clients with chronic illness," says Cyndi Zagieboylo, President and CEO of the National MS Society. "As awareness for the challenges of MS and the importance of charitable giving are among those crucial tools, RV4TheCause means a great deal to the Society and we are most appreciative to Marty to be a beneficiary of his creative endeavors."
"The creativity and dedication that helped Marty build a reputation as an expert in estate and financial planning for people living with chronic disease are also evident in his efforts to help those living with PD and to raise funding and awareness for our mission to find a cure for Parkinson's disease," said Todd Sherer, acting CEO of The Michael J. Fox Foundation for Parkinson's Research. "We are grateful that he's chosen us as a beneficiary of RV4heCause and can't wait to see where the journey takes him."
"The COPD Foundation is pleased to join the partnership with RV4TheCause," says John Walsh, president of the COPD Foundation. "Finding a cure is a common goal for our organization and we're grateful for this opportunity to create more awareness of COPD and knowledge as to how to plan for those living with COPD."
"Serving clients living with the challenges of Parkinson's, Alzheimer's, Multiple Sclerosis or other chronic illnesses so they can best manage their legal and financial affairs is a vital part of providing comprehensive estate planning services for every attorney and accountant. The Ultimate Estate Planner is proud to partner with RV4TheCause in its efforts to build awareness and knowledge on this important and human aspect of practice," says Phil Kavesh, Esq. President Ultimate Estate Planner.
Join us on a special kind of Airstream journey. We’ll be tooling around in our AS enjoying the outdoors and the many sights America has to offer, some campfires and more, but hopefully, we’ll also be able to use these travels to help the many people struggling with chronic illness.
120 million Americans live with chronic illness. So that’s a lot of people. Not all of them have had their lives significantly impacted because of their illness, but many have. And we hope to help them, their caregivers, and loved ones. (No, we’re not asking you for money, so it’s safe to keep reading.) This is a different kind of effort, an effort to educate, and build awareness.
We’ll tell you about our plans and we’d be thrilled to have any of you join us for any part of any of our trips (even part of a day). Our travels will be announced on our website www.rv4thecause.org and on our rv4thecause Facebook page (join us as a friend there too), and we’ve listed some of our places and dates in this article. Just joining us will lend strength to an important message. Traveling with us will create a great visual presence when the media shows up – which will be great for building awareness. A row of “silver Twinkies” all out to support charity will be great. All of those who join us, even for part of a day, will get a “Caravan For The Cure” T-shirt, (designed by none other than Loren Woodruff). Yes, that is a not-so-subtle bribe!
What is RV4TheCause?
RV4TheCause is a program, a national initiative, designed to educate professional advisors in several disciplines (CPAs, attorneys, financial planners, insurance consultants) on how they can better advise clients whose families have been impacted by chronic illnesses like Multiple Sclerosis, ALS, Alzheimer’s Disease, Parkinson’s Disease, and others. By educating the advisors people turn to for help, the many families affected will be able to get better advice, which will ease the burden of their struggles. Teaching professional advisors how they can effectively help and tailor planning for such clients will empower those living with chronic illness, and their loved ones. This will have a significant positive impact on many lives.
If you are active in any organization serving those living with chronic illness, contact us. If we’re traveling that way, we’d be happy to hold a program for them. We’ll also conduct seminars for those living with chronic illness, as well as their loved ones.
If you know someone with extra bucks that is just looking for a charity to give it to, well, we have some good names for them too! Three wonderful charities are profiled on the www.rv4thecause.org website and Facebook page.
Amazing People Along the Way
In the short time we’ve been doing this, we have met so many remarkable people! And so we started a section on the www.rv4TheCause.com website about people we’ve met along the way. If you, or anyone you know, have a story to tell, let us know. The more stories told, the more significant the impact, and the greater the awareness built.
Hopefully, this journey will build media interest which will build awareness with the general public about the silent and invisible health issues facing so many. Awareness facilitates greater compassion and consideration. This is a vitally important task because so many significant health issues are misunderstood. Many chronic illnesses are invisible to the untrained observer. In fact, the National Multiple Sclerosis Society published a booklet entitled, But You Look So Good. Looks can be very deceiving when you’re living with a chronic, progressive, neurological disease.
Free Professional Education Credits
Most professionals must meet strict, annual requirements for attending educational programs in order to maintain their licenses. Lorman Education Services, a professional education company, based in Eau Claire Wisconsin, will be providing free accounting, law, and financial planning credits for those attending the programs (to the extent permitted by the various states’ laws). If you are or know a CPA, financial planner, or attorney, please tell them about our programs. See www.Lorman.com. We thank Lorman not only for their support and help, but especially for being one of the first organizations to “get on board” with us at the very beginning of this project.
American Institute of CPAs
The American Institute of Certified Public Accountants (AICPA) is supporting RV4TheCause and will host two webinars, one for professionals and one for consumers, on estate and related planning for chronic illness. CPAs have long been America’s trusted advisers. Having their support and encouragement will be a tremendous boost to our mission of educating professionals.
Financial Advisors Supporting RV4TheCause
National Association of Personal Financial Advisors (NAPFA) with which I’ve been a Registered Financial Advisor for more than a decade, has joined RV4TheCause as a sponsor. NAPFA will be supporting our efforts by encouraging its members around the country to help us “present” at events in their area.
NAPFA members have always put the client first, billing for assets managed or their time, not commissions which puts them in a position of conflict with their clients. NAPFA has always been an advocate for comprehensive financial planning, which is exactly the type of planning we’ll be teaching. See: www.NAPFA.org.
Three Wonderful Charities
RV4TheCause has another mission…to help spread the word about the work of three prominent national charities – The National Multiple Sclerosis Society, The Michael J. Fox Foundation for Parkinson’s Research, and The Association of Hole in the Wall Camps. When possible, we’ll also speak directly with those living with these diseases.
National Multiple Sclerosis Society
MS stops people from moving. The National MS Society exists to make sure it doesn’t. We help each person address the challenges of living with MS. In 2009 alone, through our national office and 50 state network of chapters, we devoted over $132 million to programs that enhanced more than one million lives to move us closer to a world free of MS. The Society also invested nearly $36 million to support 375 research projects around the world. Approximately 95% of all Society funding comes from grassroots efforts, much of it raised by individuals through events such as Bike MS and Walk MS, or through direct contributions. We are people who want to do something about MS NOW. Join the movement at www.nationalMSsociety.org.
The Michael J. Fox Foundation For Parkinson’s Research
The Michael J. Fox Foundation is dedicated to ensuring the development of better treatments, and ultimately a cure, for Parkinson’s Disease through an aggressively funded research agenda. MJFF has funded almost $196 million in research to date. For more information visit www.michaeljfox.org.
The Association of Hole in the Wall Camps
The Association of Hole in the Wall Camps leads a glzaobal family of camps for children with serious medical conditions. Founded by Paul Newman over two decades ago, with the idea that no child should have to compromise their childhood because of a serious illness, today the Association oversees fourteen camps in seven countries, six new camps and programs in various stages of development, and seven Global Partnership Initiatives in Africa and Asia. To date, the camps and programs have served more than 200,000 children affected by over 150 medical conditions. For more information, visit www.holeinthewallcamps.org.
Join Us for A Drive! A Seminar! Or More!
We’d love to have you join us for a drive! Anytime, anywhere! Our first seminar trips will be announced in the following:
- www.RV4TheCause.com website under the “Seminar Administration,” “Seminar Schedule”.
- RV4TheCause Facebook page.
- Practical Planner newsletter. Subscribe to an electronic version at www.laweasy.com, a free legal website.
- Many of our professional partners will also email announcements of the various programs.