Insight on Estate Planning - April/May 2014

Apr 04, 2014

Related Practice: Estate Planning & Administration

Here’s a brief glance at what you’ll find in the April/May issue…

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 for high-net-worth taxpayers. This article discusses how a credit shelter trust works and how a new kind of trust can "supercharge" it. But, as a sidebar explains, it’s necessary to avoid running afoul of the reciprocal trust doctrine in the process.

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 viable option to reduce health care costs, but it also can be beneficial to an estate plan because HSA funds grow on a tax-deferred basis. However, as this article explains, it’s important to carefully consider an HSA's beneficiary designation.

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 bank is a family-owned, family-funded entity that "professionalizes" family lending activities, often with the help of outside advisors. This article explains how it works.

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 ensuring that critical documents — such as wills and trusts and financial and health care documents — are readily accessible when needed.

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