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October 1, 2019 / Newsletters

Insight on Estate Planning, October/November 2019

Weinstock Manion is pleased to present the October/November 2019 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:

Estate planning with a foreign twist
If a married couple includes a non-U.S. citizen spouse, there are special estate planning rules to take into account, such as a significantly smaller estate tax exemption. This article explains the differences in estate tax law for couples when both spouses are U.S. citizens vs. when one spouse is a non-U.S. citizen. A sidebar details the benefits of using a qualified domestic trust.

Put pen to paper: How a letter of instruction can benefit family harmony
A person’s will is the centerpiece of his or her estate plan. Typically, it’s the most important document used in estate planning and is created before any other. A document that complements a will is a letter of instruction. This article details the elements of the letter.

What’s new with the kiddie tax?
One of the outcomes of the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act is that children with unearned income may find themselves in a higher tax bracket than their parents. Under the “kiddie tax,” as it’s sometimes referred to, a child’s unearned income is taxed according to the tax brackets for trusts and estates, under which the highest tax rates kick in at far lower income levels. This article explains the origins of the kiddie tax and details kiddie-tax-saving strategies.

Estate Planning Pitfall: You’ve waited too long to transfer ownership of your life insurance policy
Generally, the proceeds of one’s life insurance policy are included in their taxable estate. A person can remove them by transferring ownership of the policy, but there’s a catch: Wait too long, and one’s intentions may be defeated. Essentially, if ownership of the policy is transferred within three years of a person’s death, the proceeds revert to their taxable estate. This brief article explains why an irrevocable life insurance trust should own the proceeds.

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