• Estate tax repeal now a real possibility
  • July 25, 2017
  • Uncertainty reigns: Estate tax repeal now a real possibility

    Both President Trump and the Republican majority in Congress support elimination of “death” taxes, so there’s a good chance a bill to repeal the estate and generation-skipping transfer (GST) taxes will appear on the legislative agenda soon. But how will a repeal affect estate planning? This article discusses reasons why estate planning will remain essential and why dynasty trusts may begin to play a bigger role in planning strategies. A sidebar explains the pitfalls of using a formula clause.

    Zeros and ones …Account for digital assets in your estate plan

    Personal assets, such as online bank and brokerage accounts, and business assets, such as a company’s website, domain name, client databases and electronic invoices, all fall under the umbrella of digital assets. If a person dies without addressing these assets in his or her estate plan, loved ones or other representatives may not be able to access them without going to court — or, worse yet, may not even know they exist. This article explains how to properly address digital assets in an estate plan.

    Inheriting property? Be aware of the basis consistency rules

    Legislation enacted in 2015 can have a significant impact on many estates as well as on beneficiaries who inherit property from those estates. It provides that the income tax basis of property received from a deceased person cannot exceed the property’s fair market value as finally determined for estate tax purposes. This article details the basis consistency rules.

    Estate Planning Red Flag: You haven’t made your burial wishes clear

    It may be difficult to think about, but funeral arrangements are a critical component of an estate plan. Failure to clearly communicate one’s wishes regarding the disposition of his or her remains can lead to tension, disputes and even litigation among family members during what is already a difficult time. This brief article explains specifically what should be communicated to loved ones.