Estate planning and taxes are inseparable. With the idea of preserving assets within the estate, there are a number of considerations going into this including estate taxation, creation of powers of attorney, wills and trusts, and the possible setting up of guardianships. We must consider all of these items when putting together an estate plan meeting all of your goals.
The rich and famous have access to the best lawyers in the country, so it always comes as a surprise when celebrities end up having error-ridden estate plans. Here are two recent examples of this:
If you have already have an estate plan in place, that’s great. It means you have taken the time out of your busy life to plan for something we would all rather not think about: our eventual death. However, if it has been a few years since you put your estate plan in place, it might be time to revisit it.
When highly successful individuals pass away, their families can receive a second shock when the Internal Revenue Service demands an excessive amount of money in the estate tax return. This problem, as many wealthy families in Massachusetts and the rest of the country have found out, highlights the importance of effective estate planning.
Massachusetts taxpayers know that the federal government raised tax rates for personal and investment incomes for wealthy individuals effective for 2013 tax returns. The tax changes were in part implemented to fund the President's health care plan. While this hike in income tax rates will only affect individuals making more than $400,000, the new marginal rate will affect trusts making more than $11,950 a year. This change in tax law may create challenges for estate planners.
In an action that affects Massachusetts residents and citizens all across the country, Congress passed the American Tax Relief Act of 2012. Included in that law are provisions for transfer taxes or taxes on an estate.
The federal tax code exerts an outsized influence on public perceptions of virtually every area of tax law.
In the first part of this post, we noted how easy it can be to overlook even the most basic estate planning steps. Even for a lawyer, such as the character of Matthew Crawley on "Downton Abbey," getting a proper will in place proved to be not at all straightforward.
In the first part of this post on the basics of estate planning, we focused on the documents that people should put in place to provide structure and guidance for health care decisions. That guidance and structure is crucial in situations when someone is no longer able to make those decisions for themselves due to cognitive or other impairments.
Many parents give deeply of time and treasure to cherished children. To a great extent, such gifts are a natural expression love.