Planning for the end of a life is always a difficult process, navigating emotional and legal complexity. This is why many prefer to have an attorney represent their interests and identify all the ways to save taxes and make sure property goes to the right people.
When filing taxes, it is important to know the value of an estate to an accurate degree. The value of an estate can either be valued from the "date of death" of the grantor, or judged by another specific day if the estate value has increased or decreased significantly.
Life can be complicated, but so can death. This is especially so when you consider the assets and items a typical person accumulates over a lifetime. Like they say, you can't take it with you and that means that someone will have to take care of the deceased's estate and affairs after death.
You're writing your will, and you need to choose an executor. This person will be responsible for actually carrying out what your will commands and making sure assets are distributed properly.
Spend any amount of time researching estate planning, and you're bound to come across the term probate. It's an important consideration in preparing for the future and organizing your affairs. For many people, it's a key factor in strategizing an estate plan.
Being asked to serve as the personal representative of a loved one or friend’s estate is an honor, in some cases, and a burden in others. In any case, it is a responsibility worth taking seriously. For those who have no idea what is involved in serving as a personal representative of an estate, it can be greatly helpful to work with an experienced attorney. This is all the more important when the size of the estate is significant, or when there are complex claims against the estate.
Nobody wants their family members to squabble over inheritances after they're gone. No one wants to leave a legacy of heated battles. One of the main goals of estate planning is to prevent such disputes from happening.
Florida baseball fans remember that, last September, Miami Marlins pitcher Jose Fernandez died in a boating accident near Miami Beach, Florida. Though Fernandez was unmarried at the time of his death, his girlfriend was pregnant with their child. She was not, however, named as a beneficiary on Fernandez’s trust. Rather, his mother was named as the sole beneficiary.
Florida readers may remember the iconic 2007 SuperBowl halftime performance of Prince in 2007. For those who weren't there and haven't seen it, a visit to YouTube may be in order. For Prince fans, the performance is a perfect example of the energy, creativity and commitment Prince had for his art. As committed as Prince was to his career as an artist, though, he did not take much thought for estate planning.
We’ve been looking in recent posts at Donald Trump’s plan to eliminate the estate tax, and considering the changes this will bring to wealthy and moderately wealthy Americans. As we noted last time, changes in estate taxation at the federal level do not necessarily mean changes in death taxes—whether as estate tax or inheritance tax—at the state level.