Archives for: Asset Protection

Four Important Changes That Could Affect Your Estate Plan

1. The New Elective Share. A surviving spouse of a person who dies domiciled in Florida has the right to 30% of the decedent spouse’s elective estate.

The elective estate includes: the decedent’s probate estate, revocable trust estate, ownership interest in accounts or securities registered in “Pay On Death (POD)” “Transfer On Death (TOD),” “In Trust For (ITF),” joint accounts with right of survivorship, and more. The old elective share law only applied to the decedent’s probate estate.

Typically in second marriages, spouses want to pass their assets to the children of the first marriage. Prior to the “New Elective Share” if a spouse was successful in avoiding a probate administration at his or her [..]

Estate Planning Tools: Using the GRAT as a Tax Shelter

An accidental loophole in American estate planning legislation could help the nation’s richest citizens avoid billions of dollars in taxes. Billionaires in Florida are often required to pay outrageous 40 percent estate or gift taxes on their assets. Now, though, a newly popular type of trust is providing a critical tax shield that could have preserved about $100 billion in wealth since the year 2000. This important estate planning tool has been called a “mockery of the tax code,” but it is benefiting scores of wealthy Americans who are committed to smart estate planning.

Politicians have been attempting to close the loophole since 2009, but they have not succeeded. The wealthy Americans are using provisions [..]

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.

Different types of accounts require different paperwork to be included in an estate plan. Everyone who holds a traditional non-pension taxable [..]