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Could Partnership Income Tax Rules Help You with Estate Planning?

May 30, 2017

Filed under: Taxes — Neel Shah @ 9:15 am

It’s no surprise to anyone who has engaged in the estate planning process already that there are plenty of strategies out there to help you accomplish your planning goals while also passing on as much wealth to the next generation as possible. Many of these tools, though, could still be subject to generation-skipping taxes or other measures Congress has put in place. One novel strategy that could help minimize taxes is by granting a family member partnership interests in a family business.

The most common way to think about estate planning without using this tool involves reducing the values of assets that will be included in an estate in order to pass on the future appreciation to the next generation taking control of that asset. This is usually done with tools like intentionally defective grantor trusts, grantor retained annuity trusts, or qualified personal residence trusts. While all of these certainly have their place, each does come with some disadvantages that could compromise your ability to accomplish estate planning goals.

advanced tax planning strategies lawyer

Partnership income tax law provisions, however, could be the solution you’ve been searching for. A family business already taxed as a partnership, for example, could help accomplish estate planning goals successfully. You can reallocate portions of income and use transfer of appreciation or current value without having to tap into any lifetime or annual exclusions. Even better, this can help you avoid the negative implications of a generation-skipping transfer tax. There are a lot of complex strategies that can help high net worth families, but these should always be evaluated carefully by an experienced estate planning lawyer due to their complexity. All of the details really matter when it comes to strategies like this.

When looking for estate planning solutions, it’s good to have an eye towards strategies that help you accomplish multiple goals at once. The right estate planning lawyer can play a critical role in helping you identify these.

 

 

 

 

What Trump’s Election Means for Wealth and Tax Planning

November 10, 2016

Filed under: Taxes — Neel Shah @ 9:15 am

Now that Trump has been elected, it’s time to look forward to see what potential implications this has from a wealth and tax planning perspective. Of course, this is all dependent on the direction things go in January when he takes office, but there’s agreement across a typically-divided Washington that the tax code needs major reform. With the support from both sides of the aisle and a Republican Congress, there’s a good chance that bipartisan tax legislation will be on the agenda in the first 100 days of a Trump presidency. NJ tax attorney

The main gist of the tax plan is to reform the code by dropping income tax rates for businesses and individuals and raising the standard deductions. Personal exemptions would be repealed and itemized deductions limited. Furthermore, Trump has shared his desire to repeal the federal estate tax. However, the least is known about how a repealed estate tax would actually get through.

It’s not just individual income taxes that are going to take a hit, either. The corporate tax rate may be dropped from 35 percent to 15 percent. The majority of corporate tax expenditures will be eliminated except for research and development credits, and Trump also supports a one-time 10 percent tax for those who keep corporate profits offshore.

No matter what the changes end up being, it’s clear that the winds of change are blowing. Everyone, whether it’s an individual planning ahead for their estate or a business owner concerned about long-term tax planning and asset protection, should be prepared for considering new strategies in the near future. Partnering with a law firm where the attorneys have extensive experience interpreting these complex issues and translating them into strategies for individuals will be more important now than ever.

 

 

IRS Takes Aim at Estate Tax and Gift Tax Discounts on Entities

August 16, 2016

Filed under: Taxes — Neel Shah @ 9:15 am

At the beginning of August, the Treasury Department issued proposed regulations under section 2704(b) of the Internal Revenue Code and a hearing has been scheduled for December 1st, 2016. These new regulations, while still in the proposal period, would take away all valuation discounts for inter family entity transfers that are controlled by the transferor or his or her family. irs

While these regulations might not take effect until sometime in the following year, it could be necessary to complete any discount related planning over the next several months. Some of the biggest changes adopted in the proposed regulations are outlined below. These regulations give a broad definition of control. For example, control is classified as holding 50% or more of equity in a company based as an LLC partnership or corporation. For limited partnerships, control is equivalent to having an interest in the LLC’s general partner. The proposed regulations would change valuations for transfer tax purposes of interests in family owned entities that are subject to restrictions on redemptions or liquidations.

Specifically, these restrictions will be disregarded in terms of valuing such interests for estate tax or gift tax purposes when the interest is transferred by a family member. The reasoning behind this is that after such a transfer the restriction would lapse or could be removed by the transferor or a member of his or her family. These would have a significant impact on wealth transfer tax valuation for family controlled entity interest. Practically no minority discounts would be allowed. In order to learn more about this process, you need to consult with a New Jersey estate planning and asset protection planning attorney. A knowledgeable attorney can help you protect your interests- reach out to our office today by contacting info@lawesq.net.

Comparing What You Need to Know About the Presidential Tax Reform Proposals in 2016

July 28, 2016

Filed under: Taxes — Neel Shah @ 9:15 am

It’s expected that tax policy will be one of the biggest issues in the 2016 presidential campaign. To understand how various presidential candidates, view this issue, read on to learn more.tax forms

  • Estate tax. The Hillary Clinton plan propose increasing the highest estate tax rate to 45% and lowering the estate tax exclusion to $3.5 million. Donald Trump eliminates the estate tax entirely. Bernie Sanders would propose increasing the top estate tax rate to 65% and lowering the estate tax exclusion to $3.5 million.
  • Income tax: Rates on ordinary income. Hillary Clinton wants to add a 4% tax on income over $5 million. Donald Trump establishes four tax brackets with rates of 0%, 10%, 20% and 25%. The top rate applies to income over $150,000 for single filers and $300,000 for joint filers. Bernie Sanders, likewise establishes four new brackets but these are 37%, 43%, 48% and 52%. The top rate applies to taxable income over and above $10 million. All other tax brackets would be raised by 2.2%.

Although it’s impossible to predict just yet how these income and estate tax proposals could influence you, and whether they would be successful, you need to work with a knowledgeable attorney who can help guide you regardless of the changes made. Attorneys who are familiar with the changes made legislatively and at the turn of every new presidential administration can help explain to you how this would trickle down to you and what you can do to prepare for it in advance.

Do not hesitate to reach out to a New Jersey estate planning attorney to learn more.

Should You Be Concerned About the New Nevada Commerce Tax?

July 18, 2016

Filed under: Taxes — Neel Shah @ 9:15 am

Nevada has recently instituted a new tax referred to as the commerce tax. This tax is calculated on any gross receipts higher than $4 million at a rate classified by your NAIC code from the fiscal period of July 1st to June 30th of every year. 2016 is the first year for this tax return change, but this tax return is due even if you do not presently have gross receipts higher than $4 million. You may be responsible for completing a return, but you can contact our office to learn more about this obligation.  tax planning help NJ

You need to have these returns prepared and sent in by August 15th, 2016. Although you may have just received your welcome letter from the state in order to register your business entity to submit this tax return online, bear in mind that the state of Nevada will not be providing you with tax returns directly. If you, for some reason, do not receive the welcome letter from the state of Nevada, you need to visit the state’s website in order to ensure that you have the appropriate Nevada business license. You are still responsible for completing the tax return if you meet the qualifications, whether or not you actually receive the letter.

This tax return applies to any entities with a business license including rental properties on an IRS schedule E. On the first page of the tax return, there is a checkbox indicating that you have gross receipts in excess of $4 million. In the event that your gross receipts do total more than $4 million, you may be eligible to take advantage of adjustments to lower your taxable amount, but you need to speak to your attorney as soon as possible. Since time is of the essence, reach out to our offices today to learn more how we can help you.

                                                                                                                            

 

What Is The Scariest Tax Form?

February 17, 2016

Filed under: Taxes — Neel Shah @ 9:15 am

 

Tax lawyers and accountants spend the majority of their time focusing on exposure and you should as well. This means sometimes watching the calendar and clock until you are cleared of auditing exposure. The IRS typically will have three years to audit you. If you make a mistake with your offshore account reporting, however, the IRS gets six. There are other situations where they may get more.shutterstock_158874281

Many people may find it surprising that if you have a company holding a foreign account the issue becomes even more sensitive. These refer to controlled foreign corporations frequently referred to as CFCs. When a shareholder in the United States holds more than 50% of the value or votes in a foreign corporation the company is considered a controlled foreign operation. This triggers reporting requirements with the IRS, specifically the IRS Form 5471. This is a vital form.

If you fail to file it, you could be facing penalties of up to $10,000 per form and a separate penalty can be applied to each form filed late, and each incomplete or inaccurate return too. This penalty applies even if there is no taxes due on the return. The override of the normal statute of limitations for IRS auditing in this particular form is broad. The IRS in fact has an indefinite period to examine as well as assess any taxes associated with items on the missing form. The IRS can make adjustments to the entire tax return with no date of expiration until the form is filed. You need to ensure that any time you have a situation like this that you have filed the form appropriately.

A Shift in Tax Focus for Estate Planning

January 1, 2016

Filed under: Taxes — Neel Shah @ 9:15 am

A shift has taken place in estate planning from saving on a state tax to avoiding capital gains taxes. With the federal estate tax exemption having been established at $5 million and now increase to $5.43 million per individual, it means that with portability, many spouses now are looking at a tax threshold of nearly $11 million and need not greatly worry. Only 0.12% of estates are likely to be taxed. shutterstock_94126492

This doesn’t mean that you should avoid important planning opportunities however, as you can benefit from thinking ahead and putting in place various strategies and tools to help maximize what you leave behind to your heirs.

The shift in estate planning is now going from transferring assets during lifetime to doing so at death and this helps to erase capital gains taxes. Distribution from a trust can allow beneficiaries to pay income taxes on individual lower bracket rates.              

Estate Tax Repeal Bill Likely Headed for a Vote

April 2, 2015

Filed under: Taxes — Neel Shah @ 9:15 am

In early March, Representatives Kevin Brady and Sanford Bishop introduced an estate tax repeal bill currently known as HR 1105. Although this isn’t the first estate tax repeal bill to appear as possible legislation, it’s quite likely to head to the House floor for a vote. It would be the first estate tax repeal bill in the last decade to make it that far. Changes on Pocket Watch Face. Time Concept.

While the specifics of the text inside are not released yet, it’s anticipated that it would suggest amending the Internal Revenue Code to repeal generation-skipping transfer and estate transfer taxes. It’s also expected that a maximum 35 percent gift tax rate would become permanent alongside a $5 million lifetime gift tax exemption.

Repealing the estate tax does have traction in the public, especially because it’s perceived to be so harmful to American businesses and farms considered the backbone of the economy. Combined with the fact that the estate tax brings in under 1 percent of the government’s revenue, the Representatives who introduced the bill believe that it’s time for changes with the estate tax. The bipartisan legislation has already moved though subcommittee hearings, a Senate introduction of the bill, and the vote on the House floor.

To learn more about possible changes in the estate planning sphere, contact us to set up a meeting for review of your plans. Reach out to us at info@lawesq.net.

Gift Tax Returns and Penalties for Not Filing

March 23, 2015

Filed under: Taxes — Tags: — Neel Shah @ 9:15 am

A fair amount of taxpayers are familiar with at least the basics behind gifts and taxes, but it’s important to understand your obligations when making taxable gifts to others to ensure your compliance with the Internal Revenue Code.

If you make a taxable gift to someone else, a gift tax return needs to be filed. If you fail to do this, penalties may apply. If you don’t file the gift tax return as you should, you could be responsible for the amount of gift tax due as well as 5% of the amount of that gift for every month that the return is past due. If you fail to pay the penalty, you could be responsible for the amount of the gift tax due and .5% of the amount of the gift for every month after the due date. shutterstock_163036214

Sending in your gift tax return is important for practitioners, too. Failing to do this could result in criminal charges or even referral to the IRS Office of Professional Responsibility under the umbrella of a Circular 230 violation. Bear in mind that although this filing requirement does relate to taxable gifts, even those under the annual exclusion amount, should be listed on a report. Those who fall under the annual exclusion, however, are unlikely to face a penalty as these penalties only relate to the amount of tax due.

If you’ve got more questions about your obligations for reporting with regard to gifts, contact our office to learn more about the process and how gifting can impact your overall tax situation. You can set up a meeting by emailing info@lawesq.net.

New After-Tax Rollover Rules For Your 401(k)

September 26, 2014

Filed under: Retirement Planning,Taxes — Tags: — Neel Shah @ 8:47 pm

New rules for your 401(k) could actually end up benefitting you. If you have saved after tax money in your 401(k) retirement account, it can be rolled over to a Roth IRA. While in the Roth IRA, your money will grow on a tax free basis instead of a tax deferred basis. You’ll avoid having to pay pro rata taxes on your distribution, too.

Photo Credit: visionarywealthmgmt.com

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This new change creates an opportunity for planning. Prior to this new rule, advisors had to use complex planning tools to address client concerns. Taxpayers were required to roll over their entire 401(k) and use outside funds at the time to manage the 20% income tax withholding amount. The new rule, however, gives people without the cash on hand to replace dollars that were already withheld through a distribution.

In order to capitalize on this new rule, it’s important to understand that the distributions must be scheduled at the same time or they will be treated as separate, causing the mix of pre-tax and post-tax dollars. While the official rules begin on January 1, 2015, taxpayers can make use of them now since the rules were issued on September 18, 2014. In the past the IRS has allowed taxpayer relief based on a “reasonable interpretation” standard.

To learn more about the best strategies for your 401(k) and other retirement accounts, contact our offices for a personalized consultation. Request an appointment via email at info@lawesq.net or over the phone 732-521-9455.

When to Think About Charitable Remainder Unitrust Alternatives

July 18, 2014

Filed under: Charitable Giving,Income Tax Planning,Taxes,Trusts — Tags: , , , — Neel Shah @ 4:40 pm

For many individuals approaching estate planning, charitable giving is going to factor into the equation somehow. The most popular way of passing on assets currently is through a charitable remainder unitrust, but it’s not necessarily the best option for everyone, although last year nearly $90 billion was held in U.S. trusts of this type.

When to Think About Charitable Remainder Unitrust Alternatives
(Photo Credit: lifehealthpro.com)

Here are some of the most common reasons that you might want to use something other than this trust vehicle for your charitable giving:

  • Tax Savings Today: You want maximize your current tax deduction. A charitable lead trust could be a better alternative for this situation, since you get an immediate federal income tax deduction when the gift is made. The tax deduction equals the present value of the future income stream.
  • You want the gift to begin now: Under a charitable lead trust, the client will typically gift the assets directly to a charitable trust. That trust then makes regular payments for a specific number of years or for life. Under a remainder trust, though, the charity doesn’t get anything until the trust’s term is up.
  • You want to see regular payouts: This is there’s a difference between a charitable remainder annuity trust and a unitrust. The annuity trust guarantees equal payouts throughout the length of the term (such as every year), which gives the person setting up the trust confidence that payments are being made at regular intervals.

When it comes to charitable giving, you have options. Contact us today to learn more via email info@lawesq.net or 732-521-9455 to get started.

Saving Taxes: Is a DING Trust Right For Me?

July 15, 2014

Filed under: Income Tax Planning,Taxes — Tags: , , — Neel Shah @ 4:25 pm

Like a lot of business planning strategies, it’s best that you meet with a legal professional to discuss the best tactics for your situation. One of those strategies might be a DING (Delaware Incomplete Non-Grantor Trust), a tool that is growing in popularity for managing and minimizing both federal and state income taxes. Especially for those individuals living in states with high income taxes, a DING trust is a powerful strategy for making the most of your assets without being so negatively impacted by taxes.

Saving Taxes Is a DING Trust Right For Me
(Photo Credit: america.schickhappens.net)

In a DING trust, a person can transfer assets (including some business interests) that produce a high level of income into a trust without triggering a state or federal gift tax. The state income taxes are actually transferred from the resident’s home state to a state where trust income is not taxed. There are several jurisdictions that have been used in the past for this purpose include Nevada, Delaware, and Alaska.

This type of trust is a great choice for someone who has significant portfolios that generate income or those individuals that live in a high tax state concerned about the tax implications of their assets. This form of asset protection gives peace of mind and confidence to those who use it. As of right now, New Jersey does not tax trust income if there are no resident trustees. Therefore, assets held in a DING trust may be exempted from high state income taxes (8.975% in New Jersey). For special tax planning, contact us for more details at info@lawesq.net or over the phone at 732-521-9455 to get started.

Mid-Year Tax Planning Tips

June 20, 2014

Filed under: Income Tax Planning,Retirement Planning,Taxes — Tags: , , — Neel Shah @ 3:57 pm

While not much has come out in the first half of 2014 with regard to tax legislation, there are still some important tax planning opportunities to tap into. Mid-year is a great time to schedule in your financial and estate planning review to double-check that nothing has changed and to verify that you don’t need any additional components in your plan.

Mid-Year Tax Planning Tips
(Photo Credit: w2taxservices.com)

Income tax planning usually involves a mix of three separate strategies: earning income that is received with favorable tax rates, like that which comes from qualified dividends or long-term capital gains, delaying the payment of tax by deferring income receipt to another year, and avoiding income bubbles that bump you up to another tax rate.

One way to reduce your tax obligations and contribute to your future is to ensure that you’re putting money (and enough of it) into a tax-qualified retirement plan. Doing so means that you are deferring taxes on earnings until you actually take the distributions out.

Finally, a great mid-year step to take is to verify that you are keeping good records. While most people make this promise to themselves after a hectic tax season in April, they tend to forget about it until tax time rolls around again next year. Instead, make sure you’ve kept track of your charitable deductions to date, any extra income, and other tax-related details. It’s also a great time to set up a meeting with your planner to discuss more options, especially if you have other goals you’d like to meet. To schedule your mid-year review, call us at 732-521-9455 or send an email requesting an appointment to info@lawesq.net.

Charitable Choices: Gifting Retirement Funds at Death

June 19, 2014

Filed under: Charitable Giving,Retirement Planning,Taxes — Tags: , , — Neel Shah @ 3:41 pm

Are you thinking about making a gift to a charity on your death? It might be a better option to instead consider gifting your retirement account, and there are a few different reasons for this. This can help to maximize the tax benefits for your estate, but also for the individual heirs benefitting from your estate.

Charitable Choices Gifting Retirement Funds at Death
(Photo Credit: bloomberg.com)

As of now, assets above the value of $5,340,000 that are outright transferred from a taxable estate are hit with a 40% tax, even though the individuals who receive those assets don’t have income taxes also taken out of that amount. There is, however, an exception to this, and it’s for IRAs, 401ks, and qualified retirement plans. They are categorized as ordinary income as distributions since the government has not yet taxed this money.

Gifts to charity are not subjected to the estate tax and are at the same time excluded from the taxable estate. The amount gifted to the charity can be deducted from your federal estate tax return to reduce your overall estate beneath the $5,340,000 referenced above. When done properly, this could mean that little or no federal estate tax is due upon your death, therefore meeting your goals of gifting charitably and maximizing the value of your assets for your beneficiaries.

To learn more about charitable giving and other strategies to accomplish estate planning goals, send us a message at info@lawesq.net or contact us via phone at 732-521-9455 to get started.

If It’s Good Enough for the Clintons, It’s Good Enough For You

June 18, 2014

Filed under: Estate Planning,Estate Taxes,Taxes,Trusts — Neel Shah @ 3:38 pm

The Clintons recently made the news simply for taking advantage of Estate Planning and financial planning strategies that maximize wealth and limit the encroachment of taxes. With an estate tax that has an upper limit of 40 percent of assets on death, it only makes sense for those with bigger estates to conduct some planning well in advance.

If Its Good Enough for the Clintons Its Good Enough For You
(Photo Credit: ihearttheclintons.tumblr.com)

One of the most important steps taken by the Clintons was the transfer of their New York house into a residence trust, a move they made back in 2011. These trusts have major advantages, including house value appreciation as an occurrence outside the taxable estate. The overall goal for many estate planning attorneys and other financial experts is to help build up the nontaxable estate as much as possible.

This transfer of ownership of the house specifically is a tool that could have implications for numerous Americans concerned about the tax hit on their estate. A sample strategy involving this plan is to divide house ownership in half and storing that ownership in two separate trusts. While continuing to live in the house, ensure that the trust is structured to pass on to heirs in 10 years. Remember, the growth value during that period falls outside your estate. At the end of the 10 year period, pay rent to the heirs if you plan to continue living in the house. Those rent payments are also shielded by passing outside of the estate, protecting them from tax.

For more tax-saving strategies and long-term financial planning, contact our office today. Call us at 732-521-9455 or send an email to info@lawesq.net

An S Corporation Tax Strategy: Can You Eliminate Current Income Taxes on Company Profits?

May 20, 2014

Filed under: Taxes — Tags: , , , , , , — Neel Shah @ 12:41 pm

In a recent article by the Wall Street Journal, a potential possibility for limiting tax liability is being considered on the heels of the two North Carolina business owners who are attempting it. Right now, the issue is being explored in U.S. Tax Court, too, where a previous decision in December issued a ruling in favor of business owners.

An S Corporation Tax Strategy Can You Eliminate Current Income Taxes on Company Profits
(Photo Credit: socaladvocates.com)

In an S Corp, which is typically how closely held firms organize themselves, earnings go directly from the company to the owners, who then have to pay taxes on their individual returns. This only works for companies with less than 100 shareholders, but it does provide a shield of corporation-like protection while avoiding an income tax at the corporate level.

Depending on how the court decides, there are major ramifications ahead for S corps. If the decision is handed down in favor of the corporations, these organizations may be able to reap significant tax savings by limiting their liability. In the North Carolina case, it’s all about how the owners structured their agreements. They reorganized the company into an S Corp in 1998 with a divided ownership strategy that gave 5 percent ownership to an ESOP. These assets can increase in value tax-free and allow for penalty-free withdrawals by individuals at age 59 ½ .

For tax purposes, nearly all of the profits from the corporation could have been shifted to the ESOP, putting off tax liability until individual withdrawal down the road. Many corporations are interested in mitigating risk and exploring tax reduction strategies, we can help with both. Email us at info@lawesq.net or contact us via phone at 732-521-9455 to get started.

Do you feel lucky? What is a Quick Draw Buy-Sell Agreement?

April 30, 2014

Filed under: Finances,Income Tax Planning,Inheritance Taxes,Insurance,Life Insurance,Small Business Owner,Taxes — Tags: , , , , , , , , — Neel Shah @ 8:52 am

Many business owners have a buy-sell arrangement set up for the future. It’s helpful to draw out these directions in advance, especially when there is the potential that future owners or part-owners might get gridlocked with one another. In these situations, buy-sell directions can help disputing parties move forward.

Do you feel lucky What is a Quick Draw Buy-Sell Agreement

It’s possible that you’ve already heard about a shotgun buy-sell arrangement, but a quick draw agreement is a bit different. Under a shotgun, the offering individual stipulates a price. The offerree then has the option to buy those shares or to sell their own shares to the offeror. The exact timing isn’t a major issue in this situation, since the offeree retains the option to either buy or sell. In some ways, this can even be seen as a disincentive to pull the trigger.

All that changes under a quick draw arrangement. Under a quick draw, either side can provide a notice to purchase the other’s shares at a price that is determined through an appraisal process. This can happen after a contractually defined “trigger event”, but the timing of the trigger pull is essential in quick draw. Simply put, timing is everything.

Under quick draw, buyer and seller designation is determined simply by who submits their notice to purchase the other’s shares first. A difference of even just minutes can determine who gets to buy and who gets to sell. This complex process was recently held up in Mintz v Pazer, in which the judge supported this out of the box buy-sell arrangement.

If you’d like to learn more about your buy-sell options and put a plan for the future in motion today, reach out to us at 732-521-9455 or email us at info@lawesq.net

Loop Hole or Opportunity? High State Tax Residents Use Nevada and Delaware Trusts to Avoid Tax.

April 11, 2014

Filed under: Taxes — Tags: , , , , , , , , , , — Neel Shah @ 4:07 pm

Today’s high net worth individuals are deeply sensitive to the risks they face with state income taxes. Since state income taxes can be such a burden for a wealthy person, more individuals are transferring billions of dollars’ worth of assets to trusts in states without tax, like Alaska, Nevada, and Delaware.

While these moves are currently quite legal, they are getting attention from officials in places like New York. New York officials have recognized a $150 million a year loss from avoiding taxes using out of state trusts. Wise wealth planners are clued in to these kinds of strategies, recognizing that many clients are concerned about the negative hit their assets will take when subject to such taxes. Wealth planners report that more clients are asking for assistance in protecting their money wherever possible, and out of state trusts are proving to be a vibrant market with many opportunities.

Loop Hole or Opportunity High State Tax Residents Use Nevada and Delaware Trusts to Avoid Tax
(Photo Credit: localsmile.com)

Although these transfers are happening at the individual level, they seem to mirror corporation behavior, too. Companies like Google have moved across national borders in order to cut down on the high taxes they are forced to pay if they stay in the U.S. Likewise, some people who want to sell their companies move shares out of home states and into out-of-state trusts to protect gains from state income taxes.

Estate attorneys that are in the know look at every aspect of a client’s portfolio to find the best ways to promote growth and protect from risk. Any client with a substantial portfolio might want to consider this strategy to cut down on the high state taxes that would otherwise be paid. Clients have been successful and satisfied with moving assets across the spectrum from several hundred thousand all the way up to hundreds of millions.

Nevada and Delaware have been engaged in a decades-long battle to get business from wealthy Americans through trusts. Part of the strategy for getting this business is by writing laws that make it simpler to transfer property across several generations and reduce the risk that assets will be attacked by creditors. As a result, Nevada has no state income tax and Delaware doesn’t place a tax on any out-of-state beneficiaries.

One of the most popular strategies is to use a Non-Grantor Trust, known as NING (Nevada Non-Grantor Trust) and DING (Delaware Non-Grantor Trust). Wealthy individuals who live in high-tax states can make the best of friendly policies in other states without the fear of violating any state or federal laws. In fact, a growing number of individuals are moving the assets just far enough outside their control so that they aren’t responsible for state income tax while also protecting them from being hit with a 40 percent gift tax. Most of these trusts are private, so there’s no clear data yet about just how many people are taking advantage of these incredible trust opportunities, but planners and attorneys are both reporting higher numbers of clients getting on board.

Where Not To Die, Part II

March 27, 2014

Filed under: Estate Planning,Estate Taxes,Taxes — Neel Shah @ 1:01 pm

As we told you a week ago, in addition to federal estate taxes, state estate taxes form a crazy quilt of different rules across the country. So much so that Forbes Magazine recently published an article on “Where Not To Die in 2014.”

Tax

Tax (Photo credit: 401(K) 2013)

Any guesses as to which state is the worst?

That’s right. New Jersey. Runner-up: Maryland. Both states impose not only an estate tax, but also an inheritance tax. As the Forbes article states:

“New Jersey, for example, imposes an estate tax between 4.2% and 16% on estates above $675,000, and an inheritance tax of between 11% and 16% on assets left to a sibling, nephew, niece or friend, but no inheritance tax on money left to parents, children or grandchildren. (Any estate tax owed is reduced by the inheritance tax paid.)”

See? We told you it’s a mess. That’s the bad news. The good news is that you can do something about it if you go see a competent estate planning attorney before it’s necessary.

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Where Not To Die

March 18, 2014

Filed under: Estate Planning,Estate Taxes,Taxes — Neel Shah @ 3:41 pm

Although the federal estate tax exemption has been raised to a generous $5.3 million, what about the states?

The truth is that, despite the large federal exemption, estate taxes still pose a worry in many states. In fact, 19 states as well as the District of Columbia impose estate taxes. The list includes New Jersey.

New Jersey

New Jersey (Photo credit: tico_manudo)

And every state’s rules are slightly different, making it confusing should one be considering moving for whatever reason, whether it be to save tax money or to be closer to grandchildren.

So some wealthy individuals are now consulting estate planning attorneys to help them with what has become known as “domicile planning,” to help them not escape income taxes but estate taxes, according to an article on Forbes.com.

The federal estate tax exemption of $5.3 million is now permanent, with a 40 percent tax applied to anything over that figure.

States typically have far lower exemptions and impose up to a 16 percent tax on anything over the exempt amount. New Jersey’s exemption, for example, is only $675,000. The tax on anything over that is from 4.2 percent to 16 percent.

But some states are making changes. Illinois reinstated its tax in 2011. Delaware made its “temporary” tax permanent.

That’s why estate planning attorneys are counseling some clients to move to Florida where there is no income tax and no estate tax. To benefit, you have to consider Florida to be your home at the time of your death even if you don’t live there all the time. It is a subjective evaluation.

In the meantime, there are moves afoot in some states to try and repeal the tax. Your estate planning attorney will know the latest changes that are being passed or considered.

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