Pandemic Shines Spotlight on Importance of Estate Planning

Posted by Keven DuComb, JD, MBA

May 20, 2020 at 11:00 AM

As with many crises, the ongoing coronavirus pandemic has put many issues into the spotlight that otherwise may not be top of mind for clients—like the importance of estate planning. In fact, I wouldn’t be surprised to hear that you’ve had an uptick in the number of estate planning questions your clients are asking. They might wonder if their plan is up to date. Or maybe their lack of adequate planning has become a source of worry. In each case, you can help by covering some estate planning basics, including must-haves and how to review an existing plan.

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Topics: Estate Planning

5 Steps for Successful Family Wealth Planning

Posted by Anna Hays

July 23, 2019 at 10:00 AM

Members of Generation X (those currently in their late 30s to early 50s) are often referred to as the forgotten financial generation, with a history of being overlooked as a demographic by the financial planning industry. And according to a recent Investopedia article, millennials (those currently in their early 20s to mid-30s) “face the most uncertain economic future of perhaps any generation in America since the Great Depression.” With $68 trillion transferring from baby boomers to these two groups over the next 25 years, it’s essential that your older clients start thinking about family wealth planning—and that you are ready to support both your existing clients and their children along the way.

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Topics: Estate Planning

A Spotlight on State Estate Taxes: Strategies to Avoid Exposure

Posted by David Haughton, JD

June 5, 2019 at 1:30 PM

In 2017, following the passage of the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act (TCJA), a dramatic step was taken to double the federal estate tax exemption amount. Today, individual estates valued at less than $11.4 million are not subject to taxation at a federal level. This new threshold means only a small fraction of estates will be subject to the federal estate tax upon death for the foreseeable future.

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Topics: Estate Planning

Does Your Client Still Need an ILIT?

Posted by Krista Teegarden

June 4, 2019 at 10:00 AM

Under the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act of 2017, the federal estate tax exemption increased from $5.49 million to $11.4 million per individual (in 2019). This boost means a married couple can exclude a staggering $22.8 million from estate tax!

But this dramatic change has also prompted many clients to question whether they still need an irrevocable life insurance trust (ILIT) if their estate is valued below this exemption. The answer is . . . it depends.

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Topics: Estate Planning

Changing Your Client's Irrevocable Trust: What Are the Options?

Posted by Justin C. Duft, JD, CFP, CLU, ChFC, CLTC

April 3, 2019 at 1:30 PM

Irrevocable trusts can help accomplish many financial goals, such as creating a legacy for future generations or providing financial support for a disabled family member. Whatever the purpose, grantors enjoy tremendous flexibility when designing an irrevocable trust. But once that trust is in place, the ability to adjust its direction is often limited by rigid rules. As a result, over time, a trust may fall out of alignment with the intentions of the grantor and/or the interests of the beneficiaries.

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Topics: Estate Planning

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