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Inheritances Archives

Americans leave smaller inheritances than others

Even though America is a land of economic prosperity, our aging population lags behind elders in other countries when it comes to inheritances. Most Americans intend to leave behind about $177,000 for beneficiaries and others who would inherit property; compared to several other nations, that is a pittance. In fact, Floridians might marvel at the idea that most Australians plan to leave $502,000 to their heirs. So, what is the difference between us and them? Experts say that a variety of social factors could be leading to lower inheritances. Those factors include estate tax and the growing cost of medical care in the United States.

Keep paperwork in order to distribute estate assets properly

Many Florida residents do not think they are old enough to worry about estate planning. Surprisingly, nearly 80 percent of aging Americans do not even consider themselves "old" until they reach age 80. Although we are living longer, more fulfilling and more exuberant lives, it is important to remember that you must have a plan to distribute estate assets as you reach your later years. Although you may have a very basic estate plan that includes a will, additional measures may be needed to ensure that your property is properly distributed after your death.

Keeping your kids from overspending their inheritance

You have saved up a significant amount of money for your Florida heirs, but you are concerned about their ability to spend their money wisely. For those who stand to inherit property, good financial foresight is a must. That is why about one in three benefactors is drafting an estate plan that will reduce the likelihood of financial mismanagement by their beneficiaries. Benefactors who want to make sure that their estate is handled wisely can take some early action to guarantee success.

Florida residents escape income, estate tax burdens

If you are a Florida resident working on your estate plan, you are probably already aware that careful maneuvering may be required to avoid a massive tax burden for your heirs. It is important to remember that state and federal tax differ not only based on how much you own, but it also relates to where you live. With that in mind, the experts at financial magazines have compiled a list of states where dying is radically more expensive than in other locations. Estate planners should remember that 19 states impose independent estate taxes on their residents. Even those who live in states without these taxes in place should tread with caution, as many of these regulations are subject to sudden changes.

Where is the inheritance money?

Just 25 percent of Americans under 60 believe they will inherit property from their parents or other family members, but that may be unfounded. Despite the enthusiasm behind the "spending my kids' inheritance" movement, a majority of parents say they are socking money away for their children. In fact, two out of every three individuals over the age of 60 say they are saving money for their heirs. Even though parents may not have indicated that they intend to hand down assets, most Americans are planning on leaving a financial legacy behind.

Navigating the tax code after death

With recent budget constraints in Washington, all eyes are on modified requirements for estate planning. National lawmakers have recently made changes to the tax code that could affect your ability to pass on your Florida assets to your children or other beneficiaries. In the modern era of overly aggressive taxation, those seeking estate planning services must carefully navigate government requirements.

Inheritances down with economic troubles

In the past, younger generations in Florida were generally able to count on significant inheritances after the passing of elder family members. This trend appears to be fading away with the new economy, however, leaving many Baby Boomers with fewer financial resources than their predecessors had. In fact, those in the new generations are often finding themselves paying for their parents' care rather than receiving monetary aid.

Are stepchildren required to receive assets in your will?

If you have remarried and taken on the responsibility for stepchildren, you might be confused about the legal requirements related to including them in your will. Florida attorneys say that stepparents have no legal obligation to leave inheritances to stepchildren, despite some common misconceptions. Still, there are some ways to improve your strategies for estate planning to ensure that everyone is satisfied.

Protect an inheritance with a prenuptial or postnuptial agreement

Divorce can be a major obstacle in an inheritance landing into the right hands. A mother or father must protect an inheritance for their children when heading into a second marriage. Some estate planning experts suggest using a prenuptial or postnuptial agreement in order to accomplish that.

Parents, grown children need to discuss estate plans

The holidays are upon us and families are busy making plans to get together. That said, there is no better time to talk to your adult children or parents about inheritances, estate planning and other financial matters.