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How to avoid having your nest egg scrambled.

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McBrayer Blogs

Don’t Misplace Your Trust – Proposed Tax Law Overhaul Targets Grantor Trusts, IRAs, and Other Financial Planning Tools

It’s been clear from the start that the new administration in Washington has its sights set on overhauling the tax code. However, the outline of proposed tax legislation unveiled on September 13 by the House Ways and Means Committee has made those changes all the more likely. Among those affected by the proposals would be high-net-worth and high-income individuals attempting to save for retirement or plan their estates. Here, we give you the rundown on the changes you should be aware of and how they could affect you. More >

Don’t Delay—Proposed Changes to Estate Tax Law Aim to Eliminate Step-Up in Basis

If you’ve been waiting for the “right time” to start planning your estate, don’t wait any longer—the right time may be in the rearview before you know it. With a new administration in the White House, tax reform is on the agenda in Washington, and the proposed changes would have a major effect on many estates, especially for high-net-worth individuals. More >

An Estate Planning Tool You Can Trust: Spousal Lifetime Access Trusts (SLATs)

With estate and gift tax exemptions at a historical, all-time high (over $11.5 million per person), it’s the perfect opportunity for married couples to take advantage of a unique estate planning tool: the Spousal Lifetime Access Trust, or SLAT.  Before the current exemption is cut in half on January 1, 2026, we recommend that spouses explore the benefits of establishing a SLAT – not just for the benefit of one another, but for children and grandchildren – in order to reap the most from current tax protections. More >

CARES Act Charitable Contribution Extended for 2021

For 2021, giving to charity pays off. The Consolidated Appropriations Act (CAA) extended numerous provisions contained in the Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security (CARES) Act, signed into law in March 2020. These provisions include tax changes that allow donors to give more to charity at a lower cost. More >

Five Things You Must Do to Maximize 2020 Giving and Minimize Tax Liability

It may seem hard to believe, but what has almost certainly been the longest year in human history is finally nearing an end. And while you might not want to add tax planning to your 2020 To-Do List, thinking strategically now may allow you to turn some of those leftover lemons into lemonade by minimizing your tax liability for the year. Don’t miss the following tips to get a jump on those returns. More >

A Nonprofit Organization is Not Necessarily a "Charitable" Organization

Very often when speaking of corporations established for laudable purposes people incorrectly equate the word “nonprofit” with “charitable.” While this may be a distinction without a difference in casual discussions, when it comes to a federal tax return, the two are not synonymous. This misperception during the initial stages of planning and establishment of a nonprofit corporation can result in a costly mistake by organizers hoping to fund their activities with donations. More >

Steps to Take After the Death of a Loved One

The loss of a loved one is an emotional and often overwhelming situation. The steps below provide a guide to handling the estate of the deceased individual. More >

I'm an Executor or Administrator of an Estate...Now What?

As an estate planning attorney, I often receive calls from individuals who have just been designated as a personal representative and are wondering what they are legally required to do. Personal representatives may either be named an Executor (Executrix if the individual is female) or an Administrator (Administratrix if female). An Executor is the person whom a decedent named in his or her Will to be in charge of the administration of his or her estate. An Administrator is the person appointed by the court to be in charge of the estate when someone dies without a Last Will and Testament. More >

Revocable Trusts: An Alternative Route

Traditional estate plans generally consist of a will and other documents that are meant to provide a map for fulfilling the wishes of the individual both before and after death. There are times, though, when an estate may be better served by other estate planning vehicles such as a revocable living trust, which can provide flexibility, privacy and ease of administration. These types of trusts are becoming popular and should be afforded due consideration when planning an estate. More >

Sticking to Your Guns: Accounting for firearms in an estate plan

An estate plan is designed to ensure a smooth transition of assets from a decedent to beneficiaries, as well as minimizing expenses, fees, and taxes associated with the transfer. Most estate planners may be concerned with the transfer of real property and other substantial assets, but what may be overlooked is the way in which a decedent’s firearms are accounted for. Failure to properly account for these items may produce unwanted results, all the way up to excessive fines and even prison time. More >

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