Exploiting the New IRC 199A Pass-Thru Business Deduction Using Multiple Taxpayers

By Steven J. Oshins, Esq., AEP (Distinguished) The 2017 Tax Act was rushed in order to make it effective as of January 1, 2018.  Anything that is rushed certainly will create opportunities for creative estate planners who will exploit the new tax laws for the benefit of their clients.  The greatest opportunity business owners received from the Trump Tax Act is the new IRC 199A pass-thru business deduction.  This deduction allows certain taxpayers to deduct 20% of their Qualified Business Income. The Taxable Income Limitations For a married couple with taxable income of no more than $315,000 and for an…

ABA Heckerling Reports from the 2018 Heckerling Institute

For the past 19 years, the American Bar Association Section of Real Property, Trust and Estate Law with the permission of the University of Miami School of Law, releases several extensive reports highlighting the various lectures and proceedings of the Heckerling Institute, one of the nation’s largest estate planning conferences, held every year in January. This past January 2018, marked the 52nd Annual Heckerling Institute.  To view, download and access these extensive reports, please click here to visit the ABA’s website. Further, at the above website, you can also access reports from prior Heckerling Institutes as well. We, at The…

The New IRC 199A Pass-Thru Business Deduction: Applying the 28.57% Magical W-2 Formula

By Steven J. Oshins, Esq., AEP (Distinguished) The greatest opportunity business owners received from the Trump Tax Act is the new IRC 199A pass-thru business deduction.  This deduction allows certain taxpayers to deduct 20% of their Qualified Business Income. However, not every taxpayer can receive this deduction, so estate planners have a huge opportunity to exploit the new statute by educating themselves with the details of the new statute. For a married couple with taxable income of no more than $315,000 and for an unmarried individual with taxable income of no more than $157,500, there are minimal rules and the…

Tax Reform is Here: What You Need to Know to Advise Your Clients

By Jeramie Fortenberry, J.D., LL.M. (Taxation) Director of Education WealthCounsel, LLC The most significant tax reform package of this generation is now awaiting the President’s signature and is widely expected to be signed into law at any time. The new tax law changes the tax planning landscape, creating both pitfalls and opportunities for attorneys and the clients they serve. It is critical for business and estate planning attorneys to understand these changes and how they affect their clients. In this Thought Paper, Jeramie Fortenberry, JD, LLM, provides actionable guidance for planning under the new and different tax landscape. It includes…

Impact of Potential Tax Reform on Business Owners and Possible Steps to Take in 2017

By Edwin P. Morrow III, J.D., LL.M. (Tax), CFP®, CM&AA® On November 2, 2017, the Speaker of the House, with the backing of the President, finally introduced the long-awaited bill that represents Republican efforts at comprehensive tax reform, to be titled the “Tax Cuts and Jobs Act”. Of course, the Senate will propose significant changes, and there is opposition from both parties about the direction of the bill and the trillions it could add to the national debt. That said, there is a very strong chance of something close to the bill being passed this year or early next year. What are…

Top 5 Dumbest Comments Made by Estate Planners

By Steven J. Oshins, Esq., AEP (Distinguished) Having practiced estate planning for more than two decades, I have seen and heard my share of comments and representations that are true head-scratchers that often make you roll your eyes.  This epidemic seems to have gotten much worse through the years, possibly because of the pressure to perform and thrive in a very competitive environment.  This article will highlight some of my favorites. DUMB COMMENT #1: “Bad facts make bad law!” The “bad facts make bad law” excuse has been around for many years.  Obviously, every case that has a result we…

Crowdsource Funding to Help Victims of the Las Vegas Massacre

By Martin M. Shenkman, CPA, MBA, PFS, AEP, JD, Bernard A. Krooks, JD, CPA, LLM (Taxation), CELA, AEP® (Distinguished)., and Jonathan G. Blattmachr, Esq. Introduction One of the authors just received a call to assist those helping one of the hundreds of victims of the Las Vegas shooting with some questions concerning a crowdfunding effort. What initially seemed like a simple question, which that might help one victim struggling with unfathomable challenges, following an equally unfathomable mass shooting, grew into something more. The questions grew and it became clear that they may affect the hundreds of victims of the Las…

Supply and Demand of Advanced Estate Tax Planning

By Steven J. Oshins, Esq., AEP (Distinguished) The federal estate tax exemption was increased to $5 million plus annual inflationary increases earlier this decade. “The sky is falling!  The sky is falling!  The sky is falling!”  Those were the words of many estate planners who realized that there would be a substantially smaller pool of prospective clients who need advanced estate tax planning.  At that point, not considering state estate taxes, only individuals with estates greater than $5 million and married couples with estates greater than $10 million needed any advanced estate planning done.  Today, in 2017, those figures are…

The Curious Case of the Exponential Growth of the NING Trust to Save State Income Taxes

By Steven J. Oshins, Esq., AEP (Distinguished) It’s the year 2017.  The tax world seems to be relatively similar to that of 2016.  But one tax-saving technique seems to have certainly taken on a life of its own this year.  This technique is called a NING Trust. In prior years, although there were plenty of individuals creating NING Trusts, this technique was relatively unknown throughout the estate planning industry.  However, it seems that 2017 has been the Year of the NING as many tax practitioners have noticed the exponential growth of this strategy!  Suddenly, a technique that hadn’t yet gone…

California Supreme Court Weakens Protection for Spendthrift Trusts

By Edwin P. Morrow III, J.D., LL.M. (Tax), CFP®, CM&AA® In Carmack v. Reynolds (Frealy), released March 23, 2017, the California Supreme Court, asked by the Ninth Circuit to clarify a point of California law applicable to an ongoing bankruptcy case on appeal, held that California law does not limit a bankruptcy trustee to 25% of distributions from a third-party created spendthrift trust, but includes any past distributable amounts “due and payable”. Most estate and tax professionals were probably unaware that a bankruptcy trustee could even include 25% of a trust’s distributions in a bankruptcy estate, much less more.  Under most…