Blog Author: Stephen C. Hartnett, J.D., LL.M. (Tax), Director of Education, American Academy of Estate Planning Attorneys, Inc. A new proposal regarding estate taxes has been introduced in the U.S. Senate. S.B. 309, the “For the 99.8% Act,” is sponsored by Senator Bernie Sanders (I-VT). The bill would exempt the first $3.5 million of an individual’s estate from estate taxation. (Under current law, the exemption is $5 million, doubled to $10 million through 2025, and is adjusted for … [Read more...] about New Estate Tax Proposal
Blog Author: Stephen C. Hartnett, J.D., LL.M. (Tax), Director of Education, American Academy of Estate Planning Attorneys, Inc. The new tax law doubled the amount that can be passed free of federal estate taxation, at least through 2025. In 2018, an individual can pass $11.18 million free from federal estate taxation. But, estate planning was never just about estate taxation. The core of estate planning has always been about protecting your loved ones and the assets you leave them. There … [Read more...] about Estate Planning is About More Than Taxes
Blog Author: Stephen C. Hartnett, J.D., LL.M. (Tax), Director of Education, American Academy of Estate Planning Attorneys, Inc. Today’s world is increasingly mobile. It’s increasingly common for estate planning attorneys to have clients who weren’t born in the United States or who own property outside of the United States. How do we meet the needs of these clients? The threshold question is the citizenship of the individual. Is the client a citizen of the United States (whether or not they … [Read more...] about Planning for the International Client
Blog Author: Stephen C. Hartnett, J.D., LL.M. (Tax), Director of Education, American Academy of Estate Planning Attorneys, Inc. This is part of a series of 6 blogs on important estate planning considerations. I’ll intersperse these blogs with other timely blogs. The first article in the series showed how an estate plan prepares one for incapacity during life and not just for the distribution of assets at death. The second article in the series focused on how an estate plan should take into … [Read more...] about 6 Important Estate Planning Considerations – Part 6: Taxes
Blog Author: Stephen C. Hartnett, J.D., LL.M. (Tax), Director of Education, American Academy of Estate Planning Attorneys, Inc. This is another in a series of blogs on the basics of estate planning. President Trump and Republican lawmakers recently unveiled a Blueprint for tax reform. Here’s a link to a story about this in U.S. News. Here’s a link to a deeper look at the proposal in the Atlantic. As I discussed in last week’s blog, there are many uncertainties in the plan and in the … [Read more...] about How Tax Reform Could Impact Various Families
By: Matthew M. Shafae, Attorney Litherland Law Firm Am I going to owe taxes if I inherit property? We get this question all the time. And we don’t blame you. It can get confusing. So, let’s see if we can clear up this issue. Let’s segregate the different taxes that might be owed, and then we can see if anything will be owed. Estate Tax The estate tax—or death tax, as it’s sometimes called—is a transfer tax on assets transferred from someone who died to someone who is living. The tax … [Read more...] about Am I going to owe taxes if I inherit property?
by Matthew M. Shafae and Justin M. Kennedy, Attorneys Litherland, Kennedy & Associates, APC, Attorneys at Law A lot of estate planning hypothetical situations involve the spouse dying, and the survivor getting hitched with some nefarious predator who is only after the survivor’s wealth. All of our attention is paid toward preserving the estate and protecting the kids. But what about a second marriage that actually benefits the kids, and helps preserve the estate? We recently had precisely that … [Read more...] about Portability and Second Marriages
By: Matthew M. Shafae, Attorney Litherland, Kennedy & Associates, APC, Attorneys at Law The “T-word” usually makes our eyes glaze over and we picture an overworked accountant wearing a green eyeshade crunching a bunch of numbers for us every April. Well, unfortunately, I can’t make them go away, but I can attempt to explain how taxes may impact your estate planning. Within the context of your estate plan, there are typically three main taxes that are relevant: the estate tax, the income … [Read more...] about Sorting Through the Taxes That May Impact Your Estate Plan
By: Justin M. Kennedy, Associate Attorney Litherland, Kennedy & Associates, APC, Attorneys at Law Every person is entitled to give away a certain amount of money tax-free, either during life or at death. Under the current federal estate tax law, all US citizens are each allowed an estate tax exemption of $5,000,000 (this amount is indexed for inflation and is $5,450,000 in 2016). This amount may also be reduced by gifts while living that exceed the annual exemption amount ($14,000 in … [Read more...] about Electing Portability
Studies show that a majority of American adults do not have a complete and cogent estate plan in place. Failing to plan ahead for death and the likelihood of incapacity in our later years can be costly, both emotionally and financially. Many people do not have an estate plan because they don't understand the importance of estate planning. We will highlight some of the key reasons why estate planning is essential in this blog. Avoiding Intestacy If you pass away without any estate … [Read more...] about Why is Estate Planning Important in 2016?