Tag Archives: beneficiaries

When Estate Tax Law Change Is The Only Constant, Keep Your Estate Plan Flexible

As an estate planning attorney, I find it extremely frustrating to not know what the estate tax law will be when my client eventually passes away, since this makes the very idea of “planning” problematic. The window between when an estate … Continue reading

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Lifetime Gifts: Is Massive Gifting Before The End Of 2012 A Good Estate Planning Strategy?

Some estate planners have urged their clients to make large lifetime (inter vivos) gifts to their heirs in 2012, when the current federal gift tax exemption is $5.12M, and the federal gift tax rate is 35%. We don’t know what … Continue reading

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Estate Tax Law Changes: 2011, 2012 and Beyond

The Tax Relief, Unemployment Insurance Reauthorization, and Job Creation Act (“TRUIRJCA” or “TRA 2010″ for short) was signed into law on December 17, 2010. It was a compromise bill and, as such, it suffers from two major defects: it leaves … Continue reading

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Essentials of Trust Funding

By itself, having a living trust document drafted and notarized will not effectuate the beneficial intentions of your estate plan. The problem is that a living trust will only accomplish your goals if you properly “fund” it. You have to … Continue reading

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But, What Will Happen to Fluffy When I Die?

For many Americans, pets are more like a family member than a piece of property. Yet, more than 500,000 pets are euthanized in the U.S. each year because owners die or become incapacitated. The law treats pets as mere property, … Continue reading

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Duties of a Successor Trustee

If a decedent had a properly drafted and funded trust, probate  is generally not required. Unlike a will, a trust is a private document and need not be filed with the probate court. Nonetheless, the successor trustee must still take steps to administer … Continue reading

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What Everyone Should Know About Wills

1. What Is a Will? Your will is a legal document in which you give certain instructions to be carried out after your death. For example, you may direct the distribution of your assets (your money and property), and give … Continue reading

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