One of the most widely embraced misconceptions about estate planning is the idea that a will is almost always going to be the best asset transfer device. In fact, there are circumstances that can call for the utilization of some type of trust, and we will look at some of them here. Efficient Asset Transfers There is a foundational drawback that comes along with the utilization of a will as your asset transfer vehicle. You probably want your loved ones to receive their inheritances in a timely … [Read more...] about When Is a Trust Better Than a Will?
The Heckerling conference, the largest conference for Estate Planning in the country, occurred recently. Many of the thought leaders in Estate Planning and Elder Law got together and discussed recent developments and new strategies. Read on to learn more. … [Read more...] about Estate Planning Conference Discusses “For the 99.5% Act,” SECURE, and More
The Academy takes learning seriously. The Academy’s Spring Summit included numerous substantive legal education sessions, as well as sessions on marketing and law office management. The virtual conference also included opportunities for networking and fun. Read on to learn more. … [Read more...] about Learning and Camaraderie at the Academy Summit
ABLE accounts are a nice, flexible way to supplement the usefulness of a Special Needs Trust. But certain limits apply. Read on to learn more. … [Read more...] about ABLE Accounts Complement Special Needs Trusts
There is a great deal of legislation pending and much is uncertain. But this much is certain, the estate tax exclusion will go down by half beginning 2026 under current law. Now is the time to plan for your clients and yourself. Read on to learn more. … [Read more...] about Plan Now for the Incredible Shrinking Exclusion
There is a commonly held misconception that many people harbor about estate planning. A will is looked upon as a simple document that you can use to state your final wishes in a simple and straightforward manner. Trusts are perceived as complicated devices that are used by very high net worth individuals that have estate tax concerns. These assumptions are false. The administration of a will is not that simple at all, and there are trusts are very useful for people that are not … [Read more...] about Keep It Simple With a Living Trust
The COVID-19 pandemic has placed our lives into an extended state of suspended animation in many ways. We have been forced to put certain responsibilities on the back burner, but now that there is widespread vaccine availability, the great thaw is happening before our eyes. From an estate planning perspective, it is time to revisit your plan with an attorney so you can make the necessary revisions. In addition to the fact that there is no reason to procrastinate any longer, there are some … [Read more...] about Now Is the Time to Schedule an Estate Plan Review
You should work with an attorney to develop your estate plan because as a layperson, there is no reason why you would understand all the tools that are available to you. There are many different types of trusts that can satisfy specific objectives, and you should be aware of your options. We endeavor to explain them here on this blog, and in this post, we will look at four trusts that typically fly under the radar. Secret Trusts The “secret trust” is a legal device that was sometimes used … [Read more...] about These Four Trusts Fly Under the Radar
An individual retirement account can ultimately be part of your estate if you are not going to need the money when you are a senior. Probate is the legal process of estate administration, and some asset transfers are subject to probate after someone passes away. This process is time-consuming and expensive, and the records are available to the general public. Because of these drawbacks, people often try to avoid it. This begs a question: does an individual retirement account transfer go … [Read more...] about Do IRA Transfers to a Beneficiary Go Through Probate?
There are targeted estate planning tools that can be used to satisfy very specific objectives. One of them is the QDOT, and we will look at this highly effective legal device in this post. Federal Estate Tax The acronym “QDOT” stands for a qualified domestic trust. You can use this type of trust to gain estate tax efficiency if you are married to citizen of another country. This tax is a looming threat to your legacy if you have been very successful from a financial standpoint, because it … [Read more...] about The QDOT Solution for Non-Citizen Spouses