Should a Trust Be Part of Your Estate Plan?

Trusts used to be seen as an estate planning tool for only the very wealthy, who have complicated family situations to sort out, and high-value assets to protect.

Times have changed. Modern lives are complicated, asset values are high, and good estate planning is for everyone.

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GMB #131: Everything You Need to Know About Digital Estate Planning With Hannah

Have you ever thought about what happens to your social media accounts when you pass away? Do you consider yourself familiar with the legal frameworks that need to be put in place to ensure your spouse has access to all of your online accounts? Our guest this week is Hannah Shakin, an attorney in Downey Brand’s estate planning department. Hannah is a qualified estate planning, probate, and trust administration specialist. Throughout the episode, Hannah shares her insight on the ins and outs of digital estate planning, as well as how you can protect yourself from making the common mistakes she sees regularly in her practice.   

 

 

Show Notes

[02:15] Hannah’s Background – Hannah shares her background and describes what she does on a day-to-day basis at her practice. 

[04:42] Digital Estate Planning – Hannah describes both the evolution and the current state of digital estate planning.  

[15:33] RUFADAA – Hannah details the elements of The Revised Uniform Fiduciary Access to Digital Assets Act.  

[19:45] Facebook – Hannah discusses social media accounts, and what happens to them when you pass.  

[23:47] Digital Assets – Hannah defines what is considered a digital asset and explains why it is vital to establish a living trust to avoid probate.  

[35:49] More on Estate Planning – Hannah explains why individuals must modify their estate plans, and shares which assets will or will not be passed into a trust.  

[44:41] Contingency Planning – Hannah discusses the importance of your exit strategy aligning with your estate plan.  

[47:28] Common Mistakes – Hannah identifies the most common mistakes that she sees business owner’s make in her practice.  

[52:24] IRA and Trust – Hannah elaborates on various facets of individual retirement accounts and trusts. 

 

Resources

Estate Planning for Small Business Owners

Building a business is all about taking risk. You put your belief in yourself, your money, time, and more on the line to create something that can grow and succeed. But whether your business will fund your retirement plan, or you hope to create a multi-generational family enterprise, there’s one area of risk you shouldn’t be taking.

If you own a business, you need an estate plan. And not just any plan. It needs to cover your wealth and safeguard your family. It also needs to ensure that the business can carry on or that there is an orderly plan for a sale or wind-down.

You’ll most likely need to consult with a financial advisor, a trust and estates attorney, and a tax accountant to get a comprehensive plan in place.

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GMB Ep #95: We Have a New Tax Bill [And It’s a Whopper]

 

The House Ways & Means Committee recently released proposed tax reform legislation that brings major changes to the current levels of taxation, including reversals of several provisions introduced in the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act of 2017. We dedicated this episode to exploring what this new proposal includes and some of the key aspects of the proposal that may interest our listeners. Throughout the episode, Grant dives deep into proposed provisions related to retirement, new tax brackets, business tax, tax on cryptocurrency, estate planning, and more.

 

 

Show Notes

[02:19] Background and Progress – Grant starts the conversation with a brief review of what led to this new proposed piece of legislation, its current status, and the path to getting it signed into law.

[08:16] Roth IRA Conversions – The proposed tax bill calls to prohibit Roth IRA conversions on after-tax contributions, which has been a very convenient maneuver for tax planning. Grant shares his thoughts on what to keep in mind if you’re considering a Roth IRA conversion.

[12:35] High-Income Earners – The new tax bill also brings provisions to restrict high-income earners from doing any Roth IRA conversions starting from 2031. Grant dives into the reasoning behind this, why this provision is proposed to come into effect ten years from now, and some other restrictions that apply to high-income earners.

[16:27] Mandatory Distributions – How the proposed new legislation mandates taking money out of your retirement accounts if the total value of all your retirement accounts exceeds a given threshold.

[20:00] Tax Brackets and Rates – Grant dives into how the tax brackets and applicable tax rates are updated in the proposed legislation and proposed changes to taxation on capital gains.

[27:47] Ultra-high Income – Grant shares his take on the 3 percent surtax proposed to apply for people who make over $5 million.

[29:47] Surtax on Trusts – The proposed legislation also brings provisions to add a surtax on trusts. Grant talks about the proposed tax brackets and rates related to trusts and what you should keep in mind when considering estate planning.

[31:08] Business Tax – How the proposed tax bill affects businesses depending on the type of business entity and some of the planning opportunities that emerge with the new proposal.

[35:35] Business Income Deductions – The new proposed legislation reforms a set of provisions related to business deductions that are introduced in the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act of 2017. Grant explains some of these reforms and what business owners should keep in mind about tax planning.

[39:02] Cryptocurrency Assets – Some of the tax-related legislations that apply to other assets such as stocks and bonds do not currently apply to cryptocurrency assets. Grant shares his thoughts on how that may change in the new proposed tax bill and what crypto investors show know about the new tax bill.

[42:26] Estate Planning – Another provision in the proposed tax bill brings some significant changes to taxes related to estate planning. Grant dives into what these updates include and what you should keep in mind about taking advantage of the current thresholds and exemptions.

 

Resources

https://waysandmeans.house.gov/media-center/press-releases/chairman-neal-announces-additional-days-markup-build-back-better-act

GMB Ep #75: The Biden Proposal to Raise Long Term Capital Gains Rates & Eliminate the Step Up In Basis

President Joe Biden’s new proposal for tax reforms has been getting lots of media attention in the past week. It contains provisions to substantially raise the tax rates on long-term capital gains and eliminate the step up in basis. This substantially limits some of the tax planning opportunities investors and business owners have enjoyed for a long time. In today’s episode, Grant reviews the new changes President Biden has proposed, what they mean for investors, and some of the planning opportunities that come with the new updates.

 

 

Show Notes

[01:26] New Tax Plan – Grant reviews some of the key goals of President Biden’s new tax plan and what they mean for the general public and investors.

[05:32] Long-term Capital Gains – How long-term capital gains work, how they’re different from their short-term counterparts, and how taxation comes into play.

[08:53] Proposed Rates – Grant reviews the new tax rates proposed in President Biden’s tax plan and new planning opportunities that come with the new changes.

[13:48] Selling a Business – Selling a business is one of the instances where a business owner can end up paying substantial amounts in tax according to the proposed tax rates. Grant shares his take on How business owners can work around this.

[18:30] Step Up in Basis – Step up in basis is a tool widely used by financial planners to minimize the tax impact, and President Biden’s new proposal substantially limits this opportunity. Grant shares his thoughts on how we can adapt to these proposed changes.

[25:47] Estate Planning – How the elimination of step up in basis affects estate planning and how to minimize the tax impact for people who inherit assets.

 

Resources

Reviewing the Biden Tax Plan
www.abovethecanopy.us/reviewing-the-biden-tax-plan/

 

Episode 69: Interest Rates Are Rising....Does That Mean You Should Adjust Your Bond Allocation?

Episode #66: Yes You Do Need an Estate Plan With Tammi Caress

This week on Grow Money Business we have another distinguished guest: Tammi Caress. Tammi is an estate planning attorney, and the founder of Caress Law, P.C.. Throughout the episode, we dive deep into the process of estate planning, why it’s important for any adult to have an estate plan in place, things to consider when selecting what to include in your estate, and what provisions to include in your plan for both while you’re alive and after you pass. Stay tuned until the end of the episode, where Tammy shares some tips & tricks you can use to minimize estate taxes.Continue reading

Adventures in Estate Planning: The Educational Trust Fund

Adventures in Estate Planning: The Educational Trust Fund

Helping loved ones finance the cost of education is a wonderful & long lasting gift.  But when you build this type of gift into your estate planning aspirations, the more traditional vehicles can be limiting in many ways.

529 plans and Coverdell ESAs are two of the most popular options, but the accounts can be rigid and limiting.  If your objectives are more unique, say you want to help multiple beneficiaries or include other requirements for access, you’ll need a more customized solution.

Enter the educational trust fund.  Educational trust funds give you complete control over how your gift is to be managed and distributed.  If your gifting strategy is even marginally complex, an educational trust fund might be your best option.

 

How They Work

When contributing to the 529 or Coverdell account of a loved one, you’re faced with numerous and rigid restrictions.  There are contribution limits, there are limitations on what the funds can be used for, and there are restrictions on portability and who may use the funds.  They provide a great way to save for college on a tax advantaged basis, but there’s not much room to customize.

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