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March 2018 Archives

How the new tax law impacts charitable giving

In 2017, individuals could give up to $5.49 million to beneficiaries without paying any federal estate or gift taxes. That amount was doubled for a married couple in New York or elsewhere in the United States. However, for 2018, that amount was raised to $11.18 million for an individual and $22.36 million for a married couple. In 2016, this would have meant that 4,142 families would have had to pay federal estate tax.

Reviewing an estate plan

Even though the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act has increased the exemptions for GST and individual estate gift taxes, New York residents should still review their estate plans. There are many issues not related to federal estate taxes that should be closely examined.

Trusts for adult children

New York parents concerned about whether their adult children can handle the responsibilities associated with major inheritances may consider using trusts. One mistake that parents often make with estate plans is bequeathing their wealth outright to adult children who lack financial wisdom.

Using a revocable living trust

New York residents who use revocable living trusts should make sure that they're using this estate planning tool to its full potential. Not using a living trust properly can result in a poor investment of the legal fees paid to establish the trust.