Estate Planning

Estate planning documents, wills and trusts, powers of attorney, property transfer mechanisms and law, estate tax planning, GST and gift tax planning.

Here are the topics covered in the Estate Planning section:

  • Characteristics and consequences of property titling
    • Community property vs. non-community property
    • Sole Ownership
    • Joint tenancy with right of survivorship (JTWROS)
    • Tenancy by the entirety
    • Tenancy in common
    • Trust ownership
  • Methods of property transfer at death
    • Transfers through the probate process
    • Testamentary distribution
    • Intestate versus testate succession
    • Advantages and disadvantages of probate
    • Assets subject to probate
    • Probate avoidance strategies
    • Ancillary probate administration
    • Transfers by operation of law
    • Transfers through trusts
    • Transfers by contract
  • Estate planning documents
  • Wills
    • Legal requirements of Wills
    • Types of wills
    • Modifying or revoking a will
    • Avoiding will contests
    • Powers of Attorney
    • Trusts
    • Marital property agreements
    • Buy-sell agreements in Estate Planning
  • Gifting strategies
    • Inter-vivos gifting
    • Gift-giving techniques and strategies
    • Appropriate gift property
    • Strategies for closely-held business owners
    • Gifts of present and future interests
    • Gifts to non-citizen spouses
  • Tax implications of gifting
    • Income taxation on gifts
    • Gift taxation on gifts
    • Estate taxation on gifts
    • Generation-skipping transfer tax (GSTT) on gifts
  • Gift tax compliance and tax calculation
    • Gift tax filing requirements
    • Annual exclusion
    • Applicable credit amount
    • Gift splitting
    • Prior taxable gifts
    • Education and medical exclusions
    • Gift tax liability
  • Tax Tables
    • 2014 Gift and Estate Tax Table
    • 2013 Gift and Estate Tax Table
    • 2009 through 2012 Gift and Estate Tax Tables
  • Incapacity planning
    • Definition of incapacity
  • Powers of attorney (POA)
    • POA for health care decisions
    • POA for asset management
    • POA durable feature
    • POA springing power
    • General or limited power of attorneys
    • Advance medical directive (e.g., living wills)
    • Guardianship and conservatorship
    • Medicaid planning and Special needs trusts
  • Estate tax compliance and tax calculation
  • Estate tax filing requirements
  • The Gross Estate
    • Gross estate inclusions
    • Gross estate exclusions
    • Deductions from gross estate
    • Adjusted gross estate
    • Deductions from adjusted gross estate
    • Taxable estate
    • Adjusted taxable gifts
    • Tenative tax base
    • Tenative estate tax calculation
    • Estate Tax Credits
    • Gift tax payable credit
    • Applicable credit amount (Estate & GSTT only)
    • Prior transfer credit
  • Sources of estate liquidity
    • Sale of assets to create estate liquidity
    • Life insurance to create estate liquidity
    • Loan to create estate liquidity
  • Powers of appointment (POA)
    • POA uses and purpose (Consumer Pages)|
    • General and special (limited) powers
    • 5 & 5 power
    • Crummey powers
    • Distributions for an ascertainable standard
    • Lapse of power
    • Tax implications of powers of appointment
  • Types, features, and taxation of trusts
  • Classification of trusts
    • Simple and complex trusts
    • Revocable and irrevocable trusts
    • Inter-vivos and testamentary trusts
  • Trust types and basic provisions
    • Totten trust
    • Spendthrift trust
    • Bypass trust
    • Marital trust
    • Qualified terminable interest property (QTIP) trust
    • Pour-over trust
    • §2503(b) trust
    • §2503(c) trust
    • Sprinkling provision in trusts
    • Trust beneficiaries: income and remainder
    • Rule against perpetuities
    • Estate and gift taxation of trusts
  • Qualified interest and non-qualified interest trusts
    • Grantor retained annuity trusts (GRATs)
    • Grantor retained unitrusts (GRUTs)
    • Qualified personal residence trusts (QPRTs or House-GRITs)
    • Valuation of qualified interests in trusts
  • Charitable transfers
    • Outright gifts to charity
    • Charitable remainder trusts
    • Charitable remainder unit trusts (CRUTs)
    • Charitable remainder annuity trusts (CRATs)
    • Charitable lead trusts
    • Charitable lead unitrusts (CLUTs)
    • Charitable lead annuity trusts (CLATs)
    • Charitable gift annuities
    • Pooled income funds
    • Private foundations
    • Support organatizations
    • Donor advised funds
    • Estate and gift taxation of charitable transfers
  • Use of life insurance in estate planning
    • Incidents of life insurance ownership
    • Life insurance ownership and beneficiary considerations
    • Irrevocable life insurance trust (ILIT)
    • Estate and gift taxation of life insurance
  • Estate Valuation issues
  • Estate freezes
    • Corporate and partnership recapitalizations (§2701)
    • Estate freezes using transfers in trust
    • Valuation discounts for buisness interests
    • Minority valuation discounts
    • Marketability valuation discounts
    • Blockage valuation discounts
    • Key person valuation discounts
  • Marital deduction
    • Marital deduction requirements
    • Qualifying transfers to spouse
    • Terminable interest rule and exceptions
    • Qualified domestic trust (QDOT)
    • JTWROS and Tenants by the Entirety involving Non-U.S. Spouse
  • Deferral and minimization of estate taxes
    • Exclusion of property from the gross estate
    • Lifetime gifting strategies
    • Marital deduction and bypass trust planning
    • Inter-vivos and testamentary charitable gifts
  • Intra-family and other business tranfers techniques
    • Characteristics of intra-family and other business tranfers
  • Techniques of intra-family and other business tranfers
    • Buy-sell agreement
    • Installment note
    • Self-cancelling installment note (SCIN)
    • Private annuity
    • Intra-family and other business tranfers in trust
    • Intra-family loan
    • Bargain sale
    • Gift or sale leaseback
    • Intentionally defective grantor trust
    • Family limited partnership (FLP) or limited liability company (LLC)
    • Federal income, gift, estate, and generation-skipping transfer tax implications of intra-family and other business transfers
  • Generation-skipping transfer tax (GSTT)
    • Identifying transfers subject to the GSTT
    • Direct skips (GSTT)
    • Taxable distributions (GSTT)
    • Taxable terminations (GSTT)
  • Exemptions and exclusions from the GSTT
    • The GSTT exemption
    • Qualifying annual exclusion gifts and direct transfers (GSTT)
    • Summary of Direct Skips, Taxable Terminations, & Taxable Distributions
  • Fiduciaries
    • Types of fiduciaries
    • Executor/Personal representative as fiduciary
    • Trustee as fiduciary
    • Guardian as fiduciary
    • Duties of a fiduciary
    • Breach of fiduciary duties
  • Income in respect of a decedent (IRD)
    • Assets qualifying as income in respect of a decedent (IRD)
    • Calculation for income in respect of a decedent (IRD) deduction
    • Income tax treatment of income in respect of a decedent
  • Postmortem estate planning techiques
    • Alternate valuation date of estate
    • Qualified disclaimer
    • Deferral of estate tax (§6166)
    • Corporate stock redemption (§303)
    • Special use valuation (§2032A)
  • Estate planning for non-traditional realtionships
    • Estate planning for children of another relationship
    • Estate planning for cohabitation
    • Estate planning for adoption
    • Estate planning for same-sex relationships

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