Estate Planning

Don't Look Now…Tax Rates are Headed Up!

The Bush era tax cuts are expiring.  Here are some of the key tax rates for 2010 and 2011:

2010                 2011

Ordinary Income                                   35%                 39.6% Long Term Capital Gains                       15%                 20% Qualifying Dividends                             15%                 39.6% Estate Tax                                              0%                 55%

Unless Congress decides to do something different, we are stuck with these tax rates.  The numbers may need a little explanation.

Why I Asked My Son to Give Me a Power of Attorney

Recently my son turned 18.  In Connecticut this is considered the age of majority.  In other words, he can make his own decisions.  Well, that’s what the law says.  However, he’s still living under my roof, so he’s got to deal with me.  It’s probably more accurate, though, to say that I have to deal with him.

$4 Billion in Estate Taxes not Paid…Yet!

Mr. Dan Duncan passed away in March of this year.  It is estimated his net worth was $9 billion, making him one of the top 100 most affluent people in the world.  A self-made man, he amassed his fortune in energy.  He was also very philanthropic, giving away hundreds of millions of dollars.

Unlimited Estate Tax Exclusion in 2010 is Dying

Congress recently passed legislation to keep the federal estate tax exclusion at $3.5 million.  Taxable estates would be taxed at 45%. 

Pack Your Parachute

To get your estate planning documents prepared, you'll need a good estate planning attorney. Having a well thought out and properly documented estate plan is like having a parachute – it better work the first time or else. There is no estate planning version 2.0. Either version 1.0 works or it doesn't. It's simple…get it right the first time. OK, you can have lots of versions while you are alive; it's only the last version that matters.

Web Statistics