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Estate Planning

Estate Planning is the process of determining how your wealth and assets should be transferred to the heirs of your choice: your children, grandchildren, friends, families, charitable causes, etc. and then deciding which legal tools and structures to use to best meet your estate planning goals.

Estate planning is not simply reducing or eliminating taxes and avoiding probate.  Only after establishing how you want your estate’s assets to be distributed should you consider ways to reduce taxes and avoid probate. From there, good estate plans deal with a host of other issues. Now, with all but a few estates exempt from the federal estate tax, those other issues are, or should be, at the forefront of estate planning.

An estate plan is to ensure that you are taken care of the rest of your life and that your wealth is transferred to the people you want to have it. A good estate plan ensures these goals are accomplished with as much efficiency and as little cost as possible. An estate plan addresses the management and distribution of an individual’s property and financial obligations after he or she dies with financial tools such as wills, revocable living trusts and power of attorney.

For a comprehensive overview of Estate Planning, please start with our article:


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How to Use a FLIP Trust for 2 Key Retirement Planning Goals

July 12, 2021

Many people wish to save income taxes today, and create a stream of retirement income in the future. The FLIP trust, especially the FLIP-CRUT (charitable remainder unitrust), is a venerable way to accomplish both goals. The FLIP-CRUT strategy begins with a charitable remainder trust (CRT). An individual (known as the grantor) executes a trust agreement […]

Estate Planning

The Overlooked ‘Triple Tax-Saving’ Estate Planning Tactic

July 4, 2021

Estate Planning advisors agree that one of the most underused estate planning strategies is the charitable remainder trust (CRT). That might change. New trends are making CRTs more attractive for estate planning. Taxpayers with appreciated property should take a fresh look at CRTs as part of their retirement and estate planning strategies. In a CRT, […]

The Unique Estate Planning Needs of the Unmarried

June 30, 2021

Estate planning discussions often give the impression that every senior in America is married with two or more kids. We know that is not true, and those who do not fit the profile need estate planning guidance at least as much as the stereotypical couple does. Unmarried people should put a priority on developing the […]

Consider Tapping into the Talent of a Team of Trustees

June 30, 2021

Trustees can make or break an estate plan. That’s why a growing number of estate plans now include the directed trust, an innovative way to use multiple trustees. There are two traditional options for selecting trustees. The first option is to appoint one or more family members or friends as trustees. This approach can reduce […]


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The Inheritor’s Trust: An Often-Overlooked Estate Planning Strategy

June 13, 2021

The Inheritor’s Trust is dramatically under used as an estate planning strategy, which is remarkable considering its significant benefits. Estate planning usually is done one generation at a time. The oldest members, for example, decide how they want to disburse their assets among their children and perhaps their grandchildren. Their adult children do their own […]

The Inheritor’s Trust

May 26, 2021

The Inheritor’s Trust is dramatically under-used, which is remark-able considering its significant benefits. Estate planning usually is done by one generation at a time. The oldest members, for example, decide how they want to disburse their assets among their children and perhaps their grandchildren. Their adult children do their own estate plans, and those plans […]

estate planning

This is the Year to Ensure Your Estate Plan Has Maximum Flexibility

May 24, 2021

Fellow Investor, If you have an estate valued at $3 million or higher… You’ll want to have more flexibility in your estate plan this year. That’s because the estate and gift tax law is likely to change soon. You should act now to avoid the worst effects of the new law. But your plan needs […]


How to Calculate the Required Minimum Distribution (RMD)

May 9, 2021

In last week’s edition of Retirement Watch Weekly, I discussed the rules concerning who must take required minimum distributions (RMDs), when they must be taken. This week, I’ll cover how they are calculated, so let’s dive right in. The required minimum distribution (RMD) rules limit the extent to which an individual can use the tax […]

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