My Three Sons – Planning for Children of All Ages

By Alan S. Gassman J.D., LL.M. (Taxation), Florida State Bar Certified Specialist in Wills, Trusts & Estates, AEP (Distinguished) In the 1960’s sitcom, My Three Sons, Fred MacMurray played the thoughtful and patient parent of three adolescent and teenage boys, who learned many interesting lessons living a wholesome life in suburban American. Parents with children of all ages need guidance in a number of areas that are typically not mentioned during an estate or financial planning meeting. The planner who brings up the discussion points set forth below will certainly be providing his or her clients with better tailored planning…

Technique of the Month: Decanting to Remove a Mandatory Income Interest

Download Printable Article By Steven J. Oshins, Esq., AEP (Distinguished) Trust decanting is the act of distributing assets from one trust to a new trust with different terms.  Just as one can decant wine by pouring it from its original bottle into a new bottle, leaving the unwanted sediment in the original bottle, one can pour the assets from one trust into a new trust, leaving the unwanted terms in the original trust. Which States Allow a Decanting to Removing a Mandatory Income Interest? There are now 25 states that have decanting statutes.  Of the 25 states, only six of…

Ten Tips for Boosting Office Morale

Download Printable Article By Kristina Schneider, Executive Assistant With all that’s going on right now in the world, office morale may be down.  A lot of people are uneasy with change and the potential changes to come.  A lot of people have differences of opinions and, even if you do whatever you can to keep that from impacting the overall environment in your office, morale in your office may be taking a hit. However, boosting office morale is not always on the top of the priority list for many business owners—and I’m here to tell you that it should be! …

Free Webinar – Estate Planning in 2017 & Beyond

Courtesy of WealthCounsel, LLC Ever since 2001, the keyword for estate tax planning has been “flexibility.” Thanks to a 10-year phased-in temporary estate tax repeal, followed by a massive economic recession, and then followed by the Tax Act of 2012 that effectively repealed estate tax for all but 0.2% of the population in the United States, estate planning has been anything but predictable or boring.  Fast forward to 2017, estate planners are left wondering… “What will the Republican-controlled Senate and the Donald Trump Presidency bring in terms of tax changes and how will that impact the estate planning industry?” Estate…

Staff Reviews & Setting Goals at the Beginning of the New Year

Download Printable Article By Philip J. Kavesh, J.D., LL.M. (Taxation), CFP®, ChFC, California State Bar Certified Specialist in Estate Planning, Trust & Probate Law In successfully running a law practice for over 32 years, I have found that it’s vitally important to periodically meet with each of my staff members (even ones that may be part-time or independent contractors) to review their job performance and set clear and defined goals.  Once you do these reviews on a regular basis, you will be amazed how much more motivated and productive your staff will be! I do these reviews semi-annually, at the…

Top Five Reasons Not to Overreact to the Possibility of Estate Tax Repeal

Download Printable Article By Steven J. Oshins Esq., AEP (Distinguished) At the time of this writing, President-elect Donald Trump is preparing to take office. This marks a dramatic change in political philosophies as we will soon have a Republican president, a Republican-controlled House and a Republican-controlled Senate.  Thus, there is a likelihood that we will see and hear about drastic changes in the tax code. Does this mean that the estate tax will be abolished?  Does this spell the end to advanced estate tax planning?  If you listen to many estate planners or read many of the media articles, it…

Hard to Figure: The Critical Importance of Current Continuous Estate Planning

By Jonathan G. Blattmachr, Esq. & Martin M. Shenkman, CPA/PFS, AEP (Distinguished), MBA, J.D. Reproduced with Permission by and Courtesy of Leimberg Information Services, Inc. (LISI). For information about how to subscribe to LISI, click here.   “The ‘politics’ of the estate tax have been unstable for a long time. That certainly is the case now.  Regardless of whether the estate tax is repealed next year, it might well return by reason of a sunset provision or a change in control of the White House and Congress.  Unless a client is certain to die while the estate tax is not…

Top 6 Strategies for Managing Interruptions in the Workplace

Download Printable Article By Kristina Schneider, Executive Assistant Check out these startling statistics about interruptions in the workplace! According to a study conducted by University of California, Irvine, people spend an average of 11 minutes on a project before they are interrupted and it takes them on average 25 minutes to get back to the point they were at before a distraction. According to the same study, employees that work in shared workspace (like cubicles) are interrupted 29% more often than people in private offices. According to the Journal of Experimental Psychology, even after just a 2.8-second interruption, studies showed…

The Power of Just a Little Bit

Download Printable Article By Jason Oshins, Financial Advisor, MBA As the calendar changes from December to January, we take stock of ourselves – our health, our habits, our finances.  We then formulate garish, outrageous resolutions, oftentimes setting ourselves up for failure.  We commit to cutting out all fat, never eating ice cream, waking up four days a week to work out, running five miles the other three days, learning how to play guitar, and joining a book club.  According to the messages all around us, we must be “all in”, after all.  Invariably, when January turns to February, we eat…

What a Donald Trump Presidency Means for Estate Planning

By Jeramie Fortenberry, J.D., LL.M. (Taxation) Executive Editor & Legal Education Faculty WealthCounsel, LLC In a surprising upset, Republican candidate Donald J. Trump defeated Secretary Hillary Rodham Clinton on November 8, 2016, to become President-elect of the United States. Republicans maintained a majority in the Senate and the House of Representatives, creating alignment between the White House and Congress and paving the way for Republican-backed legislation. Given the emphasis on taxes by both the incumbent Republican leadership and President-elect Trump, significant tax reform is more likely now than it has been in recent years. Trump’s tax plan is largely aligned…