Buying life insurance is a chore that many people put off because it just seems too complicated; however, one of the biggest gifts you can give to your family is the peace of mind of not having to worry about financial troubles if you should pass away. So, how do you know how much you need? Consider these things: What expenses will your family face? Life insurance can be used for just about anything. Your family will likely need to pay immediate expenses like funeral costs, final medical … [Read more...] about How Much Life Insurance Do You Need?
Divorce is one of the most painful, disruptive life experiences you can have. Given the emotional stress and turmoil that goes along with many divorces, dealing with financial details may be the last thing you want to tackle. Paying attention to the details, however, can mean the difference between making a new start and having your past haunt you far into your future. Besides finding a good divorce attorney, you’ll also want to enlist the help of a financial advisor and estate planning … [Read more...] about Divorcing? Protect Your Assets
The Generation Skipping Tax is a cleverly-devised tax to prevent the loss in tax revenue because of a loophole that existed in the law. And it works like this: When you die, you leave your estate to your children. When they die, they leave the estate to their children, aka, your grandchildren. And the estate is taxed on both transfers. To avoid this double-taxing, families began transferring estates directly from grandparent to grandchild. So, in 1986, Congress established the … [Read more...] about Estate Planning Q&A: What is the Generation Skipping Tax?
When someone dies, there are often many loose ends to tie up. Creditors need to be paid, existing real estate must be dealt with, and the estate needs to be organized. Probate is the legal process of sorting out a person’s estate upon death under court supervision. And while probate will certainly get the job done, there are usually better ways to do it. Why Avoid Probate? One of the main reasons many people want to steer clear of probate court is because it can be a long and drawn-out … [Read more...] about How To Avoid Probate
One of the benefits of having a family limited partnership is that it allows you to keep your assets within the family. But did you know a properly executed family limited partnership can also earn you tax savings every year? A good attorney can also help you understand how the processes of 'fractionalizing' and 'discounting' can maximize your death tax-saving benefits. What is a family limited partnership? A written agreement giving details of responsibilities, rights and duties of … [Read more...] about How To Save On Taxes With A Family Limited Partnership
Good estate planning isn’t just about distributing your assets after you’re gone – it’s also about creating a plan to protect you and your loved ones if you should become disabled or incapacitated. And while a living trust will take care of those assets in the event of a disability, you need a living will to protect your health and well-being. Also known as a health care directive, a living will is a legal document that dictates how you want to be treated medically if you are no longer … [Read more...] about The Importance of A Living Will
If you’ve done any research about estate planning, then you’ve probably seen the word “trust” pop up quite often. And for good reason. Trusts are an essential component of estate planning and chances are, you should have one in your plan as well. What kind of trust you need however, isn’t so cut and dry. There are basically two methods of creating a trust: The testamentary trust is created after you die in accordance with instructions you leave in your Will. This type of trust is often … [Read more...] about Q&A: What's the difference between a testamentary trust and a living trust?
Spend even just a little time planning your estate and you’ll quickly realize that there are a number of different ways to protect your estate and provide for those you love. A living trust, for example, can protect your assets from probate and even minimize the amount of estate taxes your heirs will pay after you’re gone. A living will can ensure that your preferences on health care matters are honored and if you have pets, you can even create a pet trust to make sure they enjoy a happy, … [Read more...] about Should You Have A Special Needs Trust?
Simply put, the executor of an estate (or Will) is the person responsible for seeing that the wishes of the deceased are carried out. To ensure that your wishes are in fact, honored, you should choose someone who is dependable, responsible, and available to be your executor. The responsibilities of the executor can vary depending on the wishes of the deceased, but some of the most common duties include: Locating and protecting the assets, determining “who gets what” and making sure the … [Read more...] about What Is An Executor?
When is the best time to plan your estate? Now. Estate planning is one of the most important actions you can take to protect your estate and the inheritance you hope to pass on to your heirs. Taking the time to plan your estate ensures that you decide who receives what, and you can even stipulate when they'll get it. A good estate plan can also help you minimize or even avoid probate fees, and in some cases your beneficiaries can even avoid paying estate taxes at the time of your … [Read more...] about When Is The Best Time to Plan Your Estate?