Wills, Trusts, & Estate Planning Updates

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Titling Property & Same-Sex Couples in Kentucky

With the U.S. Supreme Court poised to hear the case that could decide the fate of same-sex marriage bans once and for all, legal ground in that area is now uncertain territory. Currently, however, Kentucky does not recognize...more

The Artist’s Legacy – Business and Legal Planning Issues

Sheppard Mullin attorneys Christine Steiner and Lauren Liebes recently joined Weston Naef, Getty Photography Curator Emeritus, and ASA appraiser Jennifer Stoots for “What Will Become of Your Legacy”, a panel discussion at Los...more

(US) Unamicable Split: Inherited Real Property and the Texas Forced Sale Statute

When multiple people inherit an interest in real property, each is responsible for their share of the ad valorem taxes of the property. What happens if one party fails to meet its tax obligations? What recourse is available...more

In California We Trust: A Sensible Expansion Of The Voluntary Disclosure Program

Trusts administered outside California often are susceptible to not filing California income tax returns. This is because California has an atypical legal threshold for filing: trusts must file if a trustee or beneficiary...more

Ex-Husband Fails in Attempt to Use Texas Law to Impose Constructive Trust on Former Spouse’s Survivor Annuity

A former husband’s attempt to use Texas law to deprive his first wife of a survivor annuity under his pension plan has been firmly rejected by the U. S. Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia. Vanderkam v. Vanderkam,...more

"The Estate Planner" – January/February 2015

In this issue: - Life Insurance – A Powerful Estate Planning Tool for Nontaxable Estates - Four Ways to Transfer a Family Business - Changing Family Makeup Requires Estate Plan Review - Estate...more

State Death Tax Chart

This State Death Tax chart is maintained for the McGuireWoods LLP Website and is updated regularly. Please see full chart below for more information....more

An Overview of the Delaware Statutory Trust Act in Structured Finance Transactions

While Delaware is nationally known as the preferred jurisdiction for corporations, it is likewise recognized as a leader in the area of statutory trusts. The State of Delaware, in 1988, adopted the Delaware Business Trust...more

Delaware Statutory Trusts

Business trusts have been recognized by the Delaware common law since 1947, however, there was no express statutory recognition of the business trust in Delaware until the passage of the Delaware Statutory Trust Act...more

Uses and Advantages of Delaware Statutory Trusts and Delaware Limited Liability Companies in Structured Finance Transactions

Over the past 10-20 years, a large number of secured equipment finance and asset securitization transactions have been structured using either a Delaware Statutory Trust (a “DST”) created pursuant to the Delaware Statutory...more

Aviation Orphan Trust Structure

The use of traditional leveraged lease transactions for the financing of commercial aircraft has dropped dramatically in the last 5 to 10 years. Due to changes in economic conditions, tax laws, and accounting procedures,...more

Problems And Solutions In Business Succession Planning, P.2

We’ve already briefly discussed the importance of planning for a fitting successor, emphasizing that it is important to begin this process sooner rather than later....more

2015 Estate and Tax Planning

Blank Rome’s annual estate planning newsletter discusses certain concepts and techniques that we hope may be of interest to our clients and friends....more

U.S. Supreme Court Agrees to Hear Cases Regarding the Constitutionality of Same-Sex Marriage Bans

The U.S. Supreme Court has agreed to hear four cases from Ohio, Michigan, Kentucky, and Tennessee, respectively, regarding the constitutionality of same-sex marriage bans by the states. ...more

Illinois Supreme Court Debates Scope of Accountant-Client Privilege in Will Contests

Last week, the Illinois Supreme Court heard oral argument in Brunton v. Kruger.  Brunton involves the scope of the accountant-client privilege – specifically, what happens to that privilege after the client dies, and how the...more

New 529A Accounts for Severely Disabled Individuals

Many are familiar with section 529 college savings accounts, from which tax-free distributions must be used for qualified higher education expenses. The “Achieving a Better Life Experience Act of 2014” or the “ABLE Act of...more

In the Uniform Code We Trust: Basic Provisions of Kentucky's Uniform Trust Code

Kentucky recently followed 27 other states in enacting the Uniform Trust Code ("UTC"), which went into effect on July 15th of last year. The sweeping provisions of the UTC will apply to all types of express trusts, even those...more

Divorce and Beneficiary Designations—Florida Law Changes

Introduction - This article discusses a significant change in Florida law regarding the effect of dissolution or annulment of marriage on designations of one former spouse as beneficiary upon death of the insured other...more

Bank Regulators Release Public Sections of “Living Wills”

On January 15, the Federal Reserve and the FDIC issued a joint press release making available the public sections of resolution plans of firms with less than $100 billion in qualifying nonbank assets. The Dodd-Frank Act...more

State of the Union Surprise: President Targets Inherited Assets in Middle-Class Tax Reform

After the American Taxpayer Relief Act of 2012, many in the estate planning community thought that tax law dealing with estates and trusts was settled for some time. President Obama’s earlier budget proposals calling for a...more

Video Clip: Family Fights to Access Late Son’s Digital Data

Minnesota’s KSTP-TV Eyewitness News ran a video story on January 20, 2015, by Tom Hauser about the Anderson family who tragically lost their nineteen-year-old son, Jake. Their son’s death was ruled accidental, but the family...more

President Signs Tax Bill with Medicare Provisions, Ebola Treatment/Vaccine Bill

In December 2014, President Obama signed into a law H.R. 5771, a tax extender bill that includes the “Achieving a Better Life Experience (ABLE) Act of 2014.” ...more

Achieving a Better Life Experience: An Overview of the ABLE Act

On December 19, 2014, President Obama signed the Stephen Beck, Jr., Achieving a Better Life Experience (ABLE) Act of 2014 into law. The ABLE Act amended Section 529 of the IRC to enable the creation of state-specific tax free...more

Who is “Disabled” under ABLE?

The recently-enacted federal ABLE statute provides a long-awaited vehicle for tax-exempt investing to meet future disability-related expenses of disabled individuals. Although new Section 529A of the Internal Revenue Code is...more

No Private Letter Rulings in These Estate Planning Areas

Taxpayers who have questions about the applicability of tax law can submit a Private Letter Ruling request to the IRS. If the IRS rules, then the taxpayer can rely on the ruling as to how the law applies to their situation...more

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