Higher Gift Tax Limits for 2014

Higher Gift Tax Limits for 2014

With the beginning of another year comes changes in the laws effecting federal estate and gift taxes.  There are three primary taxes in this area: (1) federal estate, (2) the generation skipping transfer (GST), and (3) the gift tax. For the year 2014, the exclusion from the federal estate tax is $5,340,000.  This is an […]

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But I Did Spend Last Night at a Holiday Inn Express!

But I Did Spend Last Night at a Holiday Inn Express!

In June 2009, Sophia Ricco died.  She had no Will and left behind two adult children as her surviving heirs.  The son, Al, with the consent of his sister, Eileen, applied and received Letters of Administration from the Camden County Surrogate.  Feeling that his mother’s death was caused by the acts and omissions of various […]

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Beneficiary Designations

Are your beneficiary designations for life insurance, IRAs, 401(k) plans as you intend them to be?  Are you sure? Query:  If you have designated a beneficiary for a life insurance or an annuity-related asset as “my children in equal shares,” is that truly your intention?  Keep in mind that if that particular designation exists on […]

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Choosing the Right Tax Clause

Lou Grant owned a successful horse tack business worth millions.  Through gifting and his estate, this business passed to his son, Lou Jr.  His daughters, Nancy and Virginia, had an opportunity to participate in this business but refused to sign the requisite agreements to do so based on the advice of Virginia’s husband who is […]

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Elder Law – 25 Years and Counting

In 1986, a group of attorneys from around the country met at the California Bar Association’s Annual Meeting to discuss the ever increasing senior population and how to deal with the myriad of issues facing them.  The theme of their talks was “How can we help?”  These attorneys came from diverse backgrounds including private practice, […]

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Trusts For A Lifetime

In various posts we have talked about the use of trusts – revocable trusts to manage assets and avoid probate, generation skipping trusts to benefit descendants of several generations, irrevocable trusts to remove life insurance from your taxable estate, special needs trusts for disabled beneficiaries, to name just a few. As a side benefit most […]

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Have You Had The “Talk” With Your Family Members?

If you are a parent, you may be thinking of the “talk” you had with your children when they were pre-teens, but, that is not what I am referring to. This “talk” is with your family members about your “later in life” thoughts. Do your family members know your preferences about critical life support?  Funeral details?  […]

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Making Sure Your Will and Your Wishes Are Met

In 2005, Edwin Fisher executed a Will which established two trusts for the benefit of his wife.  The trusts were established to minimize death taxes upon their deaths.  His wife predeceased him.  He died in 2008.  The remainder of one trust was to be distributed among a variety of charities.  The other trust was to […]

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Use Caution With UTMA Accounts

Many of you have been in this situation. Grandma or Aunt Tillie wants to give your child money or stock – not enough to warrant some more aggressive estate planning techniques, but enough that the donor wants the funds to be invested for the long term.  This is where the Uniform Transfer to Minors Act […]

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How to Stop a Will Contest

As a recent saying goes, “If there is a Will, there may be a Will contest.”  Probate litigation continues to increase, especially when there are families who have some level of discord.  Frequently, families want to disinherit or limit the share of one of their children.  However, they also wish to insure that when they […]

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