An irrevocable life insurance trust can be a very useful tax efficiency tool for people who have valuable life insurance policies. If you simply make someone the beneficiary of a policy that you own as an individual he or she will receive the proceeds free of income tax. However, these proceeds will be considered to be a part of your estate for estate tax purposes. Given the fact that the maximum rate of the estate tax is 35% this year and 55% in 2013 you certainly want to do whatever it takes … [Read more...] about Three-Year Wait for ILITs
Inheritance planning attorneys generally find that people can come to terms with their own mortality, but as parents and grandparents we develop a firmly embedded sense of responsibility to our families. The thought of no longer being around to provide help in whatever way it may be needed can be the most difficult thing to get past when you are contemplating the inevitable. This can be especially troubling if you have someone that you love that would seem to be capable of burning through his … [Read more...] about Keeping That Safety Net in Place
People sometimes make broad assumptions based on misconceptions, and this can enter into the realm of estate planning. The above is one of the reasons why it is not a good idea to buy into do-it-yourself estate planning notions. There are websites that offer downloads and worksheets with which you can create legal documents such as last wills and revocable living trusts. As the highly respected magazine Consumer Reports has stated recently documents created using these tools are flawed, and … [Read more...] about Do Living Trusts Protect Assets?
Would you want the general public to have access to information regarding everything that took place while your estate was being administered? A whole lot of people would say no for a number of different reasons. First there is just the general idea of privacy. Why should anyone and everyone be able to pry into your final affairs, even people that you do not know? In addition to this some people have very specific personal reasons why they would not want anyone to be able to access this … [Read more...] about Do You Want to Allow Public Access to Your Final Affairs?
There are those who go forward unconcerned about the estate tax because they have heard that it is something that only applies to the very wealthy. Just how true this is will depend on your definition of "very wealthy." In fact, when 2013 arrives you really don't have to be a powerful tycoon to find yourself in possession of resources that exceed the estate tax exclusion amount, especially if you include the value of your home. Next year the estate tax exclusion is going down to just $1 … [Read more...] about Remember Home Value When Evaluating Estate Tax Exposure
If you didn't know better you may assume that revocable living trusts are only beneficial to people who have complicated portfolios and an extraordinary store of assets. But in fact, these trusts can be very useful for "the rest of us," and you should not discard the possibility of utilizing such a vehicle when you are planning your estate. One of the best reasons for choosing a revocable living trust would be to avoid probate. Unless you arrange for asset transfers outside of probate through … [Read more...] about Living Trusts Examined
When you bring up the subject of estate planning to the typical layperson he or she is usually going to equate the exercise with drawing up a last Will. Indeed, putting your final wishes into writing via a well constructed, legally binding last Will is certainly an option. It is interesting to note that in certain jurisdictions one can execute an oral will by stating his or her intentions verbally with witnesses present. This would be done under extreme circumstances when death was imminent and … [Read more...] about Types Of Wills
You may be going through life under the impression that the estate tax is only levied on people who are extremely wealthy. This is a misconception that could potentially cost your heirs a significant amount of money. In fact you do not have to be Bill Gates or Warren Buffett to have estate tax concerns. There is an exemption, and right now it stands at a relatively modest $5.12 million. However, at the end of this year the parameters of the estate tax are scheduled to change. When 2013 arrives … [Read more...] about Life Insurance Trust Can Reduce Tax Exposure
If you want be optimally prepared for the future it is important to have a savvy South Carolina estate planning lawyer carefully evaluate the nature of your assets. All resources are not created equal; the exact form of certain assets are going to dictate the optimal course of action when you are developing a long-term financial plan with the well-being of your loved ones in mind. Along these lines, if you have highly appreciable securities you may want to consider implementing the zeroed out … [Read more...] about Forbes: Zuckerberg & Moskovitz Used Zeroed-Out GRATs
If you’ve been thinking about starting your estate plan, you may be trying to choose between the use of a will or trust. They share similarities and have differences as well. This guide will help you better understand each estate plan device. If you have additional questions about wills or trusts, speak with a qualified estate planning attorney. Wills and trusts allow you to choose how your assets are distributed to beneficiaries. Wills and trusts allow you to appoint a trusted helper who … [Read more...] about The Similarities and Differences between Wills and Trusts