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April 1, 2016 / Newsletters

Insight on Estate Planning, April/May 2016

Weinstock Manion is pleased to present the April/May 2016 issue of Insight on Estate Planning, our bi-monthly newsletter. We encourage you to read it for ways to implement your estate plan more effectively, including ways to minimize taxes on your estate so as to maximize its value for your loved ones. We realize that we cannot fully address these complex issues in a few short articles, so we invite you to contact us to discuss your specific needs.

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In this issue:

Have you addressed elderly parents in your estate plan?
Typically, an estate plan includes accommodations for one’s spouse, children, grandchildren and even future generations. But some members of the family can be overlooked, such as parents or in-laws. This article offers a five-step plan for adult children to incorporate their parents’ needs into their own estate plans. A sidebar notes the peril of making gifts without considering the impact they might have on any government benefits due to the recipient.

Keying into your digital assets – Revise your estate plan to account for online documents
In the not-so-distant past, one likely kept copies of vital estate planning documents locked in a fire-resistant vault or file cabinet, with copies at an attorney’s office. However, in this digital age, it’s more likely that legal documents and financial statements are being stored in online ledgers, including email transmissions from banks and other financial institutions. This article explores questions regarding the digital storage of documents and offers practical steps to help make it easier for family members to access digital files and accounts.

Donate art and secure a tax break
Valuable works of art may be ideal candidates for charitable donation. Generally, it’s advantageous to donate appreciated property to avoid capital gains taxes. Because the top capital gains rate for art and other “collectibles” is 28%, donating art is particularly effective. This article answers key questions to keep in mind when donating art, including getting an appraisal, being cognizant of the related-use rule, and considering a fractional donation.

Estate Planning Pitfall – Your college-age child doesn’t have an estate plan
In addition to essentials such as clothing, toiletries, bedding and a laptop, students heading off to college in the fall also should “pack” all the necessary financial and medical documents. This brief article details important estate planning documents every student should have.

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