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estate tax repeal, followed by a massive economic recession, and then followed by the Tax Act of 2012 that effectively repealed estate tax for all but 0.2% of the population in the United States, estate planning has been anything but predictable or boring.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…

Trump Wins: A Brave New World for Estate Planners

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 election of Donald J. Trump as our 45th President was largely unexpected. It is difficult to forecast what that will mean during his term, and, perhaps, his second term. However, he has proposed wide-ranging changes to the nation’s tax system which will affect virtually all Americans and their advisors. Estate planners in particular face a dramatic impact on their practices.” EXECUTIVE SUMMARY: The…

Investment Opportunities Involving Private Foundations And Pension Plans

Download Printable Article By Bruce Givner, Esq. Introduction. Private foundations (a particular type of which are charitable remainder trusts) and pension plans are attractive structures since they both involve (i) tax deductible contributions and (ii) no tax on the funds accumulating in them.  Despite their obvious advantages, we find that clients shy away from adopting them due to the tax laws’ restrictions on what they can do with the funds invested in the two structures.  Let’s first discuss the significant advantages of each.  Then we’ll discuss the restrictions and at least hint at the ways to exploit those limits. Private…

The Viability of Delaware Dynasty Trusts After the Kloiber Case

Download Printable Article By Steven J. Oshins Esq., AEP (Distinguished) It’s over!  One of the highest-profile cases in the history of the estate planning industry, and one that was being monitored by estate planners all over the United States, has been settled.  Delaware trust promoters had been holding their breath awaiting the result of the case that became the posterchild for jurisdiction selection and the importance of avoiding the use of a health, education, maintenance and support trust in a jurisdiction like Delaware that allows a divorcing spouse of a beneficiary to penetrate the trust. No estate planning professional can…