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Insight on Estate Planning - August/September 2017

August 1, 2017

Here's a brief glance at what you will find in the August/September issue…

An uncertain tax climate

An estate tax repeal might result in negative tax consequences for some families

It's clear that tax reform is a high priority for the Trump administration and Republican leaders in Congress. In particular, the federal estate tax remains a prime target of some lawmakers. One possible scenario is that this tax will be repealed, with modifications to related tax law provisions. This article discusses current estate tax laws and the potential problems that may arise for family members if (or when) estate tax laws are changed. A sidebar examines income tax problems that may arise when gifting securities.

A 529 plan can benefit your estate plan

As summer vacations wind down and thoughts turn back to school activities, people might find themselves reviewing their finances and considering the options for funding their children's (or grandchildren's) college educations. Some may be familiar with the basics of a 529 plan, but it can also benefit an estate plan. This article explains how a 529 plan works and how it affects an estate plan.

Would a spendthrift trust help achieve your estate planning goals?

A person doesn't have to hold onto assets until the day he or she dies with the hope that heirs will change their ways by that time. Instead, consider using a spendthrift trust that can provide protection, regardless of how long the person lives. As with other trusts, a spendthrift trust may incorporate various tax benefits, but that's not its primary focus. Regardless of whether estate tax reform is enacted in the near future, this trust type can help provide for an heir while protecting assets from his or her potentially imprudent actions. This article details how a spendthrift trust works and the importance of the role of trustee.

Estate Planning Pitfall

You die without having drafted a will

Where there's a will, there's a way – a way to pass assets to heirs in the manner in which a person wants. However, if an individual dies without a will, assets will be distributed according to state law, regardless of the person's intentions. This also increases the possibility of a contest in the courts. This brief article explains what happens when a person dies without having created a will.

To view a PDF of the newsletter with full articles, click here.  

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