August 29, 2014

How Do I Find An Estate Planning Attorney In My Area?

ACTEC

What is a better starting place than advertisements and phone directories?

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How To List A Charity As Your Beneficiary

Charity

There is a tax benefit to leaving some assets to your favorite charity rather than leaving it to your heirs.

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Mailbox: How Can I Leave My Estate To A Charity?

Gift Boxes

Leaving a legacy can be a great benefit for the charity receiving the gift.

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Fourteen Ways to Avoid Paying Capital Gains

Like water for money

The capital gains tax traps wealth in an investment vehicle requiring special techniques to free the capital without penalty.

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Lifetime Exclusion From Gift Or Estate Taxes

Colorful Gift Wrapping

When you die, your assets and belongings–called your “estate”–are subject to taxation, but the there is an amount under which the executor of your estate will not have to pay taxes.

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Annual Exclusion From Gift Taxes

White Gift with Red Ribbon

There is a limit, or exclusion–an amount that the government will allow you to gift to a person per year, without incurring tax consequences.

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Myth: A Will Determines How Your Assets Are Distributed When You Die

grapes_yellow_leaves_t

It is a common assumption that your last will and testament determines who gets your stuff when you die. What you may not know is the vast majority of your assets may be transferred to others regardless of the instructions in your will.

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How to Calculate An Advisor’s Value: Risk Management and Estate Planning

Chess Row Of Pawns

Comprehensive wealth management is a bottomless task.

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Estate Planning

Child Drowning in Money Corruption

The most important product of estate planning is achieving family harmony.

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Who Gets Your Stuff When You Die Without a Will?

Who Gets Your Stuff When You Die Without a Will?

It can be tricky to figure out who your “next of kin” is, so here’s a handy flowchart to help you figure out who gets everything you leave behind if you don’t have a will.

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Beneficiary Designations: Per Capita or Per Stirpes?

beneficiaries

Before a grandmother passes away, both her sons predecease her. Left with only her daughter and grandchildren, depending on her titling one of three things may happen.

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Should We Hate the Richest Kids in the Graveyard?

Children in the graveyard

“They don’t deserve it!” is the most common complaint. And in most cases it’s true

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Should Planners Bypass The Bypass Trust?

Her Ladyship's Estate

The new unified credit changes for estate planning in 2013 have once again changed when you should have provisions for a bypass trust.

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IRA Cap Gives Rise to New Funding Strategies

Be Outraged And Fund Your Roth

President’s proposal comes with silver linings for shrewd advisors

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Giving Gifts to the Wrong Beneficiaries–Mistake #5

BandW-Children

Knowing which assets to give away to your beneficiaries can save your estate and your beneficiaries big tax bills, even if you have a small net worth. If you plan on making a gift to charity from your estate, you can be even more tax savvy with your giving.

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Failing to Implement the Estate Plan–Mistake #6

Grandparents

One of the most common estate planning mistakes is a plan that is implemented incorrectly. Your estate plan is only worth the paper it is printed on unless you follow through on titling your assets correctly and updating your beneficiary designations.

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Creating Multiple Probate Estates–Mistake #4

Several Generations

If you own real estate in different states, you may be leaving a mess of nightmarish proportions for your executor (the person who oversees and distributes your assets when you die). Here’s how to reduce the headache.

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Failing to Name Beneficiaries on Retirement Accounts and Insurance Policies–Mistake #3

Grandfather and Grandson

It may surprise you that proceeds from retirement accounts and insurance policies are not divided according to the terms in your will. Instead, these assets pass directly to the beneficiaries you named on the account.

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Assuming a Will is All You Need–Mistake #2

Older Women

Taking the time to create your estate documents may protect your interest as much while you are alive as they will after your death. No matter your age, in addition to a will, you need two additional documents.

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Not Having an Estate Plan–Mistake #1

Young Girl

The worst thing you can do is to do nothing at all and assume everything will pan out in the end. No matter how much (or how little) money you have, you need at least a simple will.

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Five Wishes For End Of Life Care

Five Wishes for end of life care

Five Wishes is a national advance directive created by the non-profit organization Aging with Dignity. It has been described as the “living will with a heart and soul.”

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Your Parents’ Estate Plan Part 2: What You Need to Know

Father and Adult Son

A thoughtful estate plan can make your heirs’ lives easier. But it is your parents’ estate planning that will make your life easier.

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Your Parents’ Estate Plan Part 1: Why You Need to Know

Father and Adult Son

Your estate plan can make your heirs’ lives easier. But it is your parents’ estate planning that will make your life easier.

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Video: The 5 Most Important Documents to Have

Marotta Youtube

Communicating honestly about your finances with your family and putting your estate in order passes on a legacy of foresight and financial wisdom that will help generations to come.

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Achieving Family Harmony in Estate Planning Part 2: Make Sure Your Plan Fits Your Unique Needs

Children Overflowing Car

Estate planning must begin with family harmony as the goal. Thus personal dynamics are more important than avoiding probate and estate taxes.

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Achieving Family Harmony in Estate Planning Part 1: Leave Your Estate in the Right Hands

Child Drowning in Money Corruption

The most important product of estate planning is achieving family harmony. Think carefully when you choose your executor or trustee.

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Dropping the Baton in Estate Titling

Children With Money Baton

How you “title” the property you own is a lot more important than you might think. Failure to title your assets properly could undo the best will and trust planning that money can buy.

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