In This Issue:

- Is your estate plan flexible? Estate tax law uncertainty requires options

- No time like the present: With favorable estate tax and real estate environments, use a QPRT to give away your home

- Owning life insurance can make estate planning complicated

- Estate Planning Red Flag: You and your spouse have a joint revocable trust

Excerpt from Is your estate plan flexible?

This year, just as in 2010, even the short-term future of the federal estate tax and other transfer taxes is uncertain. Currently, the exemption for gift, estate and generation-skipping transfer (GST) taxes is an inflation-adjusted $5.12 million, and the top tax rate is 35%. Absent congressional intervention, however, on Jan. 1, 2013, the exemption will drop to $1 million (indexed for inflation for GST tax purposes) and the top tax rate will jump to 55%. One proposal calls for a $3.5 million exemption and a 45% tax rate, but it’s not yet clear whether that or some other transfer tax regime will be in place next year.

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