Wills, Trusts, & Estate Planning Tax

Read Wills, Trusts, & Estate Planning updates, articles, and legal commentary from leading lawyers and law firms:
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Hillary Clinton Advises of Changes She Would Make to the Estate Tax Rate

And its not downward – surprise! Last week, Hillary advised that she would like to move the highest estate tax rate from its current 40% to 65%. ...more

Jointly-Owned Property: Not Always the Right Plan

For any number of reasons, you have decided to add a partner, child, or close friend as a joint owner on one or more of your assets. Perhaps you are concerned about becoming disabled, and want to know that your loved one can...more

Proposed Regulations Under IRC Section 2704 Seek to Eliminate Discounts on Transfers of Family Business Interests

On Aug. 2, 2016, the Treasury Department and the Internal Revenue Service released proposed regulations under Internal Revenue Code (Code) section 2704 (the “Proposed Regulations”). The Proposed Regulations, if finalized in...more

Mission Near Impossible - Reliance on Professionals Defense to Late Filing and Payment Penalties

An estate sought relief for $1.189 million in penalties for the late filing of a Form 706 and the late payment of estate taxes when the filing and payment were over a year late. The U.S. District Court granted the...more

Estate Planning Valuation Discounts Under Section 2704: An Update

For about a generation, families have taken minority discounts when valuing interest in closely-held businesses for estate, gift and generation-skipping transfer tax purposes. This popular estate planning technique is often...more

Projected Inflation-Adjusted Estate, Gift and GST Tax Exclusion Amounts for 2017 Now Available

Based on the Consumer Price Index for the 12-month period ending August 31, 2016, Thompson Reuters Checkpoint has released their projected inflation-adjusted Estate, Gift, GST tax, and other exclusion amounts for 2017, as...more

IRS Proposes Valuation Discount Regulations: Implications for Family-Controlled Businesses

IRS issues new proposed rules aimed at eliminating valuation discounts for transfers of interests in family-controlled entities. Clients considering making transfers of interests in such entities should act soon....more

Valuation Discounts to Family-Controlled Entities in Peril Under Proposed IRS Regulations

On August 4, the Internal Revenue Service finally issued much anticipated proposed regulations under Section 2704 of the Internal Revenue Code, which regulations are intended to significantly limit taxpayers' ability to apply...more

IRS Provides Sample Language for “Qualified Contingency” to Meet “Probability of Exhaustion Test”

One of the many requirements that a trust must meet in order for it to qualify as a Charitable Remainder Annuity Trust (“CRAT”) is the “Probability of Exhaustion Test”. This test applies to CRATs whose annuity term is based...more

Deloitte’s $500 Million Sentence

We have assisted many accounting firms in the creation or revision of their client engagement letters. They very often question the need to include certain provisions intended to limit their liability to their clients and...more

New Treasury Proposed Regulations: Bad for family farms

In transferring the ownership of family farms to the next generation, it is common to take advantage of certain valuation discounts in making transfers. The Department of Treasury recently released proposed regulations under...more

Understanding the Tax Consequences of Inheriting a Roth IRA

Passing down a Roth IRA can seem like a good idea, but it doesn't always make the most sense. Before converting a traditional IRA into a Roth IRA to benefit your heirs, you should consider the tax...more

Proposed changes to Section 2704 could spur tax increase for owners of closely held businesses

Controversial proposed regulations issued by the Treasury and the IRS on August 4, 2016, would change rules for valuing interests in business entities of which a person or a family owns at least one-half. The regulations...more

Proposed IRS Valuation Rules Could Have Major Impact on Family Wealth Transfers

New rules proposed by the IRS on August 2 could severely limit or eliminate the use of discounts commonly applied to value interests in family businesses for tax purposes. These discounts, which have been approved in numerous...more

Proposed Tax Regulations Limit Availability of Valuation Discounts to Family Business Owners

For family business owners who desire to transfer ownership of part of their business to the next generation, the valuation of the business interest is often an important factor to consider. This is especially true for family...more

IRS Proposes New Rules Designed to Restrict Valuation Discounts in Family Transfers

Partnerships and LLCs are common choices of entity for family-owned businesses, due to their flexibility and the many uses to which they can be put – including pooling of family assets, succession planning, asset protection,...more

[Webinar] Life Insurance to Fund Buyouts or Loss of a Key Person: Practical Ways to Avoid Tax Traps and Other Pitfalls - September...

Life insurance can help a business that loses an owner or other key person. Although life insurance death benefits can be tax-free, part or all of the benefits are taxable if not done the right way. Please join Steven B....more

IRS Proposes Regulations to Limit Valuation Discounts for Family Businesses

On August 2, 2016, the Internal Revenue Service and the Treasury Department issued proposed regulations intended to substantially limit the use of discounts in valuing intra-family transfers of interests in family-controlled...more

Put Me in Coach! Using Split Dollar Life Insurance Plans to Compensate Division I Coaches

In August 2016, the national sports media provided details regarding the compensation package for Coach Jim Harbaugh at the University of Michigan. It comes as no surprise to anyone that Division I football and basketball...more

Proposed 2704 Regulations: Significant Impact on Valuation Discounts for Family Businesses

Background: On August 4, 2016, the Treasury Department and Internal Revenue Service issued proposed regulations addressing the valuation of certain business interests for federal estate, gift and generation-skipping tax...more

Intra-Family Loans: An Estate Planning Strategy in a Low-Interest Rate Environment

In the current economic environment, IRS-prescribed monthly interest rates for certain intra-family transactions are at historic lows. As a result, an excellent opportunity exists to transfer wealth to lower generation family...more

Valuation Discounts for Intra-Family Transfers of Family-Held Business Interests are Proposed to be Curtailed – Act Now!

On August 4, 2016, the Treasury Department issued proposed regulations that would, if implemented, significantly curtail valuation discounts applied to intra-family transfers of family business interests. Final adoption of...more

[Webinar] U.S. Tax and Estate Planning for Foreign Persons - Meritas Capability Webinar - September 27th - 1:00p.m. U.S. CDT

Many successful people come to the United States from other countries, either permanently or on study or work assignments that are intended to last just for a few years. These people may earn income in the United States and...more

IRS Attempts Collection Against Surviving Spouse and Marital Deduction Property

In a recent U.S. District Court case from the Southern District of California, the court ruled on several motions to dismiss relating to the IRS' attempt to impose liability on a surviving spouse for estate taxes on the...more

Proposed Treasury Regulations Regarding Valuation Discounts for Transfers of Family-Controlled Entities, if Enacted, Would Apply...

After years of anticipation, the U.S. IRS recently issued Proposed Treasury Regulations that would, if enacted in their current form, substantially eliminate most valuation discounts for family-controlled entities and result...more

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