Christina Scola

Christina Scola

Adler Pollock & Sheehan P.C.

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Estate Planning Pitfall: Watch out for IRA traps

An IRA can be a valuable estate planning tool, offering tax-deferred growth (tax-free in the case of a Roth IRA) and asset protection. But two recent developments create traps for the unwary: the “one-rollover-per-year” rule...more

10/17/2014 - Asset Protection Beneficiaries Consumer Bankruptcy Creditors Inherited IRA IRA IRA Rollovers Tax Deferral

Good intentions: Don’t let asset transfers run afoul of the law

With the current estate tax regime of a high gift and estate tax exemption amount and low estate tax rates, transferring wealth is becoming the focus of estate planning rather than reducing estate tax liability. And with...more

10/16/2014 - Creditors Estate Tax Fraudulent Transfers Gift-Tax Exemption Real Estate Transfers Tax Exemptions

Now’s the time for a charitable lead trust

Affluent families who wish to give to charity while minimizing gift and estate taxes should consider a charitable lead trust (CLT). These trusts are most effective in a low-interest-rate environment, so conditions for taking...more

10/15/2014 - Charitable Lead Annuity Trust Charitable Trusts Estate Planning Estate Tax Trusts

The Crummey trust: Still relevant after all these years

Traditionally, trusts used in estate planning contain “Crummey” withdrawal powers to ensure that contributions qualify for the annual gift tax exclusion. Now that the gift and estate tax exemption has reached a higher level,...more

10/14/2014 - Beneficiaries Gift-Tax Exemption IRS Powers of Withdrawal

Insight on Estate Planning - October/November 2014

In This Newsletter: - The Crummey trust: Still relevant after all these years - Now’s the time for a charitable lead trust - Good intentions: Don’t let asset transfers run afoul of the law - Estate Planning...more

10/13/2014 - Estate Planning Trusts

Estate Planning Pitfall: You own property outside your revocable trust

The primary purpose of a revocable trust — also known as a “living trust” or “inter vivos trust” — is to avoid probate. But, for those who are not diligent about transferring assets to the trust, that purpose may be defeated....more

8/12/2014

How will the GST tax affect your estate plan?

A new grandparent often considers making a gift to the newest member of the family. However, before taking action, it’s important to understand how the generation-skipping transfer (GST) tax may affect an estate plan. The GST...more

8/11/2014 - Beneficiaries Estate Tax Estate-Tax Exemption Generation-Skipping Transfer Inter Vivos Gifts Tax Planning

Protecting your real estate assets

When preparing an estate plan, asset protection for real estate is particularly challenging, because it’s the only asset that can’t be moved. Gifting it is one option, but this leaves the property exposed to creditors. This...more

8/8/2014 - Asset Protection Business Assets Homestead Exemption Limited Liability Companies Limited Partnerships Primary Residence Qualified Personal Residence Trust Real Estate Investments Real Estate Transfers

Unintended consequences: After divorce, review your estate plan to avoid surprises

The recently divorced have likely had their fill of legal documents and proceedings, but it’s important that they review their estate plan as soon as possible to ensure they’re protected against unintended consequences. This...more

8/6/2014 - Beneficiaries Divorce Irrevocable Life Insurance Trusts QTIP Trusts

Insight on Estate Planning - August/September 2014

In This Issue: - Unintended consequences: After divorce, review your estate plan to avoid surprises - Protecting your real estate assets - How will the GST tax affect your estate plan? - Estate...more

8/4/2014 - Community Property Divorce GST Homestead Exemption Inter Vivos Gifts Irrevocable Life Insurance Trusts Marital Assets Property Owners Property Ownership QTIP Trusts Real Estate Investments Tax Planning

Estate Planning Pitfall: You don’t have a buy-sell agreement for your business

Without a well-designed, properly funded buy-sell agreement, an owner’s death can have a negative effect on the surviving owners. A buy-sell agreement requires (or permits) the company or the remaining owners to buy the...more

6/6/2014 - Buy-Sell Agreements Estate Planning Estate Tax

When is the optimal time to begin receiving Social Security?

When to begin receiving Social Security benefits depends on each person’s individual circumstances. This article shows how to determine a breakeven point — the age at which the dollar value of more (but smaller) payments...more

6/5/2014 - Retirement Social Security Social Security Benefits

International estate planning 101

Many traditional estate planning strategies are based on the assumption that everyone involved is a U.S. citizen. But for those couples with a noncitizen spouse, special rules apply that require additional planning. This...more

6/4/2014 - Estate Planning Estate Tax

Adapting to the times: Estate planning focus shifts to income taxes

As the gift and estate tax exemption has significantly increased, and the estate tax rate decreased, individual income tax and capital gains tax rates have increased. This means that those who expect to have little or no...more

6/3/2014 - Estate Planning Estate Tax Income Taxes

Insight on Estate Planning - June/July 2014

In This Issue: - Adapting to the times: Estate planning focus shifts to income taxes - International estate planning 101 - When is the optimal time to begin receiving Social Security? - Estate...more

6/2/2014 - Estate Planning Estate Tax Popular

Estate Planning Pitfall: Your documents are hard to find

No matter how much time is invested in designing an estate plan, one’s efforts will be for naught if his or her family can’t find essential documents in case of death or incapacitation. This article offers several tips for...more

4/9/2014 - Estate Planning

A family bank professionalizes intrafamily lending

Too often, people lend money to family members with little planning and regard for potential unintended consequences. But a “family bank” can enhance the benefits of intrafamily loans, while minimizing the risks. A family...more

4/8/2014 - Banks Lending

ABCs of HSAs: Learn how an HSA can benefit your estate plan

One health care arrangement that has been soaring in popularity in recent years has been the pairing of a high-deductible health plan (HDHP) with a Health Savings Account (HSA). The good news is that not only is an HSA a...more

4/7/2014 - Estate Planning Healthcare HSA

Boosting your estate planning power: How to “supercharge” a credit shelter trust

While high estate tax exemption amounts combined with portability of exemptions between spouses has reduced the effectiveness of credit shelter trusts in some cases, they continue to offer significant benefits, particularly...more

4/4/2014 - Estate Planning

Insight on Estate Planning - April/May 2014

In This Issue: - Boosting your estate planning power: How to “supercharge” a credit shelter trust - ABCs of HSAs: Learn how an HSA can benefit your estate plan - A family bank professionalizes intrafamily...more

4/3/2014 - Estate Planning HSA

Estate Planning Pitfall - You’ve chosen your executor hastily

Choosing the right executor — sometimes known as a “personal representative” — is critical to the smooth administration of an estate. Yet many people treat this decision as an afterthought. Given an executor’s many...more

1/31/2014 - Estate Planning Executors

Power of attorney abuse: What can you do about it?

A financial power of attorney — sometimes called a “power of attorney for property” or a “general power of attorney” — can be a valuable planning tool. But it’s susceptible to abuse by scam artists, dishonest caretakers or...more

1/30/2014 - Fraud Power of Attorney Scams

Thanks, Grandma and Grandpa! 3 estate-planning-friendly strategies to pay for a grandchild’s college education

It’s no secret that the cost of a college education continues to soar. But this article offers three options to help one’s grandchildren deal with this burden while saving gift and estate taxes: direct tuition payments to the...more

1/29/2014 - Estate Planning Financial Aid Gift Tax Grantor Trusts GST Paying For College Trusts Tuition

The BDIT A: trust with a twist

The beneficiary defective inheritor’s trust (BDIT) is a powerful estate planning tool that allows enjoyment of the benefits of a traditional trust without giving up control over the property. BDITs are particularly effective...more

1/28/2014 - Estate Planning Trusts

Insight on Estate Planning - February/March 2014

In This Issue: - The BDIT: A trust with a twist - Thanks, Grandma and Grandpa! 3 estate-planning-friendly strategies to pay for a grandchild’s college education - Power of attorney abuse: What can you do...more

1/27/2014 - Estate Planning Estate Tax Inheritance Inheritance Tax Trusts

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