In order to be able to answer the question that serves as the title of this post, we have to provide some broad background information about all taxes on postmortem asset transfers.Federal Estate TaxThere is a federal estate tax in the United States, and it carries a 40 percent top rate. Most families never have to be concerned about this tax, because there is a high credit or exclusion that can be used to transfer a certain amount tax-free.Only the portion of an estate that exceeds this … [Read more...] about Do New Yorkers Pay an Inheritance Tax?
A lot of people assume that they should use a last will as an asset transfer vehicle if you are not extremely wealthy. This is one of the most commonly held misconceptions that people harbor about the estate planning process.There are trusts that are used by wealthy people that are exposed to the federal and/or New York estate tax, but there are other trusts that can be appropriate for a wide range of people. The trust that is right for many individuals of relatively ordinary means is the … [Read more...] about How to Choose a Trustee
As elder law and estate planning attorneys, we are tightly focused on the needs of senior citizens. It is a broad subject, and there are many facets to take into consideration. Some of them are purely practical in nature, but there are some that are emotional and psychological.Combating LonelinessLoneliness is very common among elders. According to the National Institute on Aging, approximately 28 percent of older Americans (14 million people) are living alone, and many of them experience … [Read more...] about A Pet Trust Can Make Companionship Possible
Back in the olden days before the advent of the Internet, estate planning revolved around the transfer of physical objects and hard copy records. There were no virtual forms of property, but now, things are very different, and they are evolving all the time.With this in mind, we will look at digital estate planning with an eye on cryptocurrency in this post.Revised Uniform Fiduciary Access to Digital Assets Act (RUFADAA)An agent under a durable power of attorney is empowered to manage assets … [Read more...] about Digital Estate Planning and Cryptocurrency
Before we get into the subject of trust administration, we will share some information about the value of revocable living trusts. First, it is important to understand the fact that this type of trust can be the best choice even if you are not extremely wealthy.Secondly, since the trust is in fact revocable, you don’t have to worry about surrendering control of the assets that you convey into it. You could act as the trustee and the beneficiary throughout your life, so you would control the … [Read more...] about Things to Know About Living Trust Administration
There are some estate planning situations that can be addressed through the purchase of life insurance. In a broader sense, life insurance coverage can serve many different underlying purposes, but we will look at three specific uses in this post.Estate Planning for Young AdultsThe vast majority of Americans are going through life without any estate planning documents at all, and people that are under the age of 50 are the biggest culprits. Obviously, the overall life expectancy is close to 80 … [Read more...] about Life Insurance Can Provide Planning Solutions
The coronavirus pandemic has brought life as we know to a standstill in many ways, so it is easy to put certain responsibilities on the back burner. Though this is absolutely understandable under the circumstances, an estate plan is a must during these uncertain times.It is important to state your wishes with regard to monetary asset transfers, but that is only part of the equation. A well-constructed estate plan will also addressed medical related issues that can arise at a time when you are … [Read more...] about Estate Planning: Avoid Coronavirus Procrastination
Probate is a legal process that an estate must pass through under certain circumstances. When a will is used as the asset transfer vehicle, it would be admitted to probate, and the court would supervise the administration process.The same thing is true with someone passes away without any estate planning documents at all. When this happens, the court would appoint a personal representative to act as the administrator.It is possible to proactively implement a probate avoidance strategy, and … [Read more...] about Are All Asset Transfers Subject to Probate?
If you are going to leave an inheritance to someone with a disability, you would do well to discuss the situation with our attorney. We have a great deal of expertise in this area, and we would be more than glad to gain an understanding of your situation and advise you appropriately.Legal counsel is extremely important under these circumstances, because a great deal can be lost if mistakes are made.What are these potential losses? One of them would be a forfeiture of health care … [Read more...] about Planning Technique for People With Special Needs
When you are a single parent, you must take action to put an estate plan in place. There is absolutely no way that you can responsibly go through life without making provisions for the well-being of your children if you were to pass away.This is true regardless of your age. Of course, we all expect to watch our children become adults in their own right, but there are no guarantees. Individuals pass away in accidents and due to sudden catastrophic health conditions each and every day. As sad … [Read more...] about Estate Planning for Single Parents