transfer of wealth
Your resources allow you to open doors for yourself, those you love and the organizations you support. Effective estate planning can help preserve your assets, reduce taxes paid by your heirs and help unlock opportunities for future generations. ]
consider setting up one or more trusts
Trusts can help you accomplish many goals: provide consistent management of your assets in the event of your absence or unfortunate incapacity, be a source of future support for your heirs, fund your charitable intentions, possibly minimize taxes and in certain cases avoid probate. Trusts may also be established with specific instructions as to the amount and timing of gifts to children or other beneficiaries.
set your gifting intentions
Gifting is one of the most basic and inexpensive strategies for saving on estate taxes (particularly within the allowable federal and state exclusions from tax) and helping your loved ones. Anything you don't gift to families, charity or consume during your lifetime may be subject to estate tax.
keep your estate tax to a minimum
Over the past few years, federal estate taxes have been in constant flux. It is important to review your estate plan and documents with your tax and legal advisors to make sure they are up to date. Your Financial Advisor will be glad to help you coordinate this review.
probate and beneficiary designations are a complete estate plan
Certain assets, such as qualified plans, IRAs and life insurance policies, allow you to select a specific beneficiary. When you designate a beneficiary, your assets will pass to the named beneficiary at your death, without probate. It is important to coordinate these designations with your will and review these designations regularly. Note that these assets may still be subject to estate taxes.Life Insurance and Estate Taxes
life insurance and estate tax
Life insurance affords another planning opportunity. Often, life insurance policies are owned in a way that the proceeds avoid probate and are exempt from income and estate tax. However, they can be subject to estate tax if you own the policy outright or have certain rights in the policy. If taxes are a concern, there are things to consider such as having your adult children purchase and own a policy on your life or the joint lives of you and your spouse or for the trustee of an irrevocable trust to purchase the policy.