Category: Estate Planning

You are going to retire when?

Just how wealthy are you? You'll want to figure that out before you make any major life decisions. Your first impulse may be to go out and buy things, but that may not be in your best interest. Even if you're used to handling your own finances, now's the...
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Charitable Giving

What are the tax benefits of donating to charity? Through tax legislation, Congress has attempted to encourage charitable giving because it is good social policy. Most every charity depends on individual contributions to remain financially solvent, especially in this era of fewer direct government dollars...
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Lifetime Gifting

What is lifetime (noncharitable) gifting? Gifting can be a powerful estate planning tool, allowing you to transfer your wealth to others during your lifetime. Lifetime gifts have many advantages over gifts you might leave in your will (these are called bequests, legacies, or devises). You might find making lifetime...
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Getting Help from a Financial Professional

Are you suddenly on your own or forced to assume greater responsibility for your financial future? Unsure about whether you’re on the right track with your savings and investments? Finding yourself with new responsibilities, such as the care of a child or an aging parent? Facing other life events,...
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Opps I forgot

Don’t Forget to Include Memory Loss When Planning for Retirement When planning for retirement, an important factor that is often overlooked is the potential for declining cognitive skills associated with aging. Cognitive impairment (CI), often attributable to dementia or Alzheimer’s disease, can have profound implications for your overall health...
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Investing for Major Financial Goals

Go out into your yard and dig a big hole. Every month, throw $50 into it, but don’t take any money out until you’re ready to buy a house, send your child to college, or retire. It sounds a little crazy, doesn’t it? But that’s what investing without setting...
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Settling an Estate

  Definition of estate When people die, they usually leave behind money and other things of value (assets). In addition, they may have auto loans, mortgages, and other outstanding debts (liabilities). Together, the assets and liabilities left by a decedent are known as the estate. Settling an estate means...
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How can I minimize taxes on my estate?

Answer: This question may seem simple, but the answer is not so easy. In fact, there are experts who make their living answering just this question. Estate tax liability depends on the year in which you die and the value of your estate when you die (see the following...
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Isn’t estate planning only for the rich?

Answer: In a word, no. Estate planning allows you or anyone to implement certain tools now to ensure that your concerns and goals are fulfilled after you die. Your objective may be to simply make sure that your loved ones are provided for. Or you may have more complex...
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Retained Income Trusts

Introduction A retained income trust is a type of irrevocable trust, whereby an individual (called the grantor) transfers assets to a trust and then retains an interest for a period of time or for life. The retained interest may be the right to receive payments, or it may be...
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Personal Residence Trust

Qualified Personal Residence Trust A qualified personal residence trust (QPRT, pronounced “Q-Pert”) is a specialized form of grantor retained interest trust (GRIT). It is an irrevocable trust into which you transfer an interest in a personal residence, and in which you retain the “income” interest — the right to...
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Leaving a Legacy

You’ve worked hard over the years to accumulate wealth, and you probably find it comforting to know that after your death the assets you leave behind will continue to be a source of support for your family, friends, and the causes that are important to you. But to ensure...
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State Homestead Laws

The origin of state homestead laws The federal Homestead Act, which was enacted in 1862, offered free 160-acre parcels of land to anyone willing to settle on them. After five years, these “homesteaders” would become the owners of the land, as long as certain conditions were met (such as...
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Using a Corp.

How Corporations, Limited Liability Companies, and Limited Liability Partnerships Protect Personal Assets Refer a friend To find out more click here IMPORTANT DISCLOSURES Broadridge Investor Communication Solutions, Inc. does not provide investment, tax, or legal advice. The information presented here is not specific to any individual’s personal circumstances. To...
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Asset Protection in Estate Planning

You’re beginning to accumulate substantial wealth, but you worry about protecting it from future potential creditors. Whether your concern is for your personal assets or your business, various tools exist to keep your property safe from tax collectors, accident victims, health-care providers, credit card issuers, business creditors, and creditors...
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Understanding Probate

When you die, you leave behind your estate. Your estate consists of your assets–all of your money, real estate, and worldly belongings. Your estate also includes your debts, expenses, and unpaid taxes. After you die, somebody must take charge of your estate and settle your affairs. This person will...
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Wills: The Cornerstone of Your Estate Plan

If you care about what happens to your money, home, and other property after you die, you need to do some estate planning. There are many tools you can use to achieve your estate planning goals, but a will is probably the most vital. Even if you’re young or...
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Trust Basics

Whether you’re seeking to manage your own assets, control how your assets are distributed after your death, or plan for incapacity, trusts can help you accomplish your estate planning goals. Their power is in their versatility–many types of trusts exist, each designed for a specific purpose. Although trust law...
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The Best Property to Give to Charity

Giving to charity is not only personally satisfying, the IRS (and possibly your state) also rewards you with generous tax breaks. Current income tax deduction if you itemize, subject to certain percentage limitations for any one year Tax benefit received reduces the cost of the donation (e.g., a $100...
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Table of Federal Transfer Tax Rates and Exemption Limits

Federal Gift and Estate Tax Year Applicable Exclusion Amount Highest Tax Rate 2009 $1 million for gift tax purposes $3.5 million for estate tax purposes 45% 2010* $1 million for gift tax purposes $5 million or $0 for estate tax purposes 35% or 0% 2011 $5 million plus DSUEA**...
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Minimizing Estate Taxes

The act of giving away your property, either during life or at death, will probably be subject to one or more of several types of taxes (collectively referred to here as estate taxes), either on the federal level, state level, or both. These tax liabilities may be the largest...
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Conducting a Periodic Review of Your Estate Plan

Conducting a Periodic Review of Your Estate Plan What is conducting a periodic review of your estate plan? With your estate plan successfully implemented, one final but critical step remains: carrying out a periodic review and update. Imagine this: since you implemented your estate plan five years ago, you...
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Irrevocable Life Insurance Trust

TERM LIFE QUOTE: https://www.naaip.org/gfsfinancial/compare-life# What is it? An irrevocable life insurance trust (ILIT), sometimes referred to as a wealth replacement trust, is a trust that is funded, at least in part, by life insurance policies or proceeds. If properly implemented, an ILIT can help minimize estate taxes and provide...
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Maximizing the Estate Planning Value of Life Insurance

Simply put, maximizing the estate planning value of life insurance means getting the most bang for your buck. That is, it involves keeping as much of the proceeds as possible away from the IRS and in the hands of your beneficiaries. When you die, all your worldly goods (e.g.,...
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Life Insurance: Estate Planning

What is life insurance? A contract Technically, life insurance is a contract between the policyowner (which can be you, “the insured,” or a separate party) and an insurer. The policyowner agrees to make premium payments, and the insurer agrees to provide a specified sum to a designated third party...
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Selecting an Executor

An executor is a personal representative who acts for you after your death. You nominate or designate an executor in your will to settle your estate. The person chosen will act in your place to make decisions you would have made if you were still alive. The probate court...
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Wills

What is a will? A will may be the most vital piece of your estate plan, even if your estate is a modest one. It is a legal document that lets you direct how your property will be dispersed (among other things) when you die. It becomes effective only...
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Estate Planning Checklist

General information Yes No N/A 1. Has relevant personal information been gathered? Personal details Family details Current advisory team Goals and expectations 2. Has financial situation been assessed? Assets Liabilities Life insurance policies Other insurance coverage Income Expenses 3. Have current documents been reviewed? Will Trust documents Power of...
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If Long-Term Care Insurance Isn’t Right for You: Other Options

Long-term care insurance (LTCI) isn’t for everyone. Not only is it expensive and sometimes hard to qualify for, but there’s no guarantee you’ll ever use the benefits. But if you decide not to buy LTCI, what are your alternatives? You saved for a rainy day–it’s here Should the need...
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