Category: Estate Planning & Tax

Nov 2

This is the first of a two-part blog note briefly exploring federal transfer and some income tax considerations as we approach the end of the calendar year 2020.   “You’ve got to be careful if you don’t know where you are going, because you might Read More

Nov 10

On November 2, 2015 the IRS published updated estate, gift and generation-skipping transfer tax figures.  These amounts will be effective beginning on January 1, 2016. 2016 Basic Exclusion Amount for Estate and Gift Tax: $5,450,000 2016 Generation-Skipping Transfer Tax Exemption: $5,450,000 2016 Gift Tax Annual Read More

Jun 17

The most common ways that assets pass to our heirs upon death are: By the terms of thoughtfully developed Will or Trust documents; By automatic rights of survivorship covering certain types of jointly owned assets; and By beneficiary designation forms covering various accounts, policies, or Read More

Jan 31

One of the most important decisions in establishing a trust is selecting the trustee, and determining the terms and method of trustee succession.  The role of the trustee can vary greatly depending upon the terms of the trust. In some instances, the trustee will have Read More

Aug 12

Portability allows for the transfer of a deceased spouse’s unused federal estate tax exemption amount to his or her surviving spouse.  The main advantages to portability are the simplification of estate planning for married couples and the possibility of eliminating built-in gain on certain assets Read More

Jan 9

In the first hours of 2013, Congress approved the American Taxpayer Relief Act of 2012 (ATRA), which establishes the first “permanent” set of estate, gift and generation-skipping transfer (GST) tax provisions in twelve years.  Many of the Bush estate tax reductions were made permanent, with Read More

Aug 13

Many of our clients utilize trusts to meet their estate planning, asset protection, and tax planning goals.  In cases where trusts have been created for the future benefit of younger generations, there may be compelling reasons to conceal the existence of a trust.  For example, Read More

Jul 5

GCF’s William Kirk serves on the Executive Committee of the Indian River Community Foundation’s Professional Advisors Council. He recently wrote the following guest column featured in the IRCF Summer 2012 Newsletter. Solutions for Advisors and Clients

May 5

In prior years, many people formed Florida limited liability companies (LLCs) thinking that assets owned by the LLC could not be attached by creditors and that a creditor would not be permitted to take direct ownership of the LLC membership interest.  However, due to a Read More

Apr 10

Although the future of the estate tax is murky at best, the present continues to be an appropriate time to take advantage of certain wealth transfer strategies.  The interest rates in March remain historically low, and the Section 7520 rate remains unchanged from February at Read More

Mar 29

The Tax Relief, Unemployment Insurance Reauthorization, and Job Creation Act of 2010 (the 2010 Act) created a two-year gift tax “applicable exclusion amount” of $5 million, indexed for inflation to $5,120,000 for the year 2012.  Unless Congress takes further action, the provisions of the Economic Read More

Sep 23

Historically, life insurance policies were relatively simple investments that could be easily managed without any specialized knowledge of modern life insurance complexities.  However, in today’s world, life insurance products have become increasingly more sophisticated.  If you are the trustee of an Irrevocable Life Insurance Trust (or any other trust Read More

Sep 21

The one-year “repeal” of the estate tax continues to surprise us.  One element of this change in the tax law for 2010 is the full repeal of the Generation Skipping Transfer tax (the “GST tax”).  And, with 3/4ths of the year gone, it is becoming less likely that Congress will do anything on a Read More


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