Silicon Valley Estate Planning Journal

News and Articles from the Law Offices of John C. Martin

Category Archive

18 Posts in Tax Planning

John C. Martin Granted Favorable IRS Private Letter Ruling on Behalf of Tax Client

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PLR 201551008 Under current law, the executor of a Decedent’s estate must timely file Form 706 to elect portability of a deceased spouse’s unused exemption amount. The ultimate tax savings of a timely portability election can be significant, effectively doubling the available estate tax exemption amount (from about $5.4 Million to $10.8 Million). For example, suppose a […]

BREAKING NEWS: Supreme Court Ruling on Inherited IRAs

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Today, the Supreme Court ruled in Clark v. Rameker that inherited IRAs cannot be excluded from the bankruptcy estate using the “retirement funds” exemption under 11 U.S.C. 522(b)(3)(C). The full text of the Supreme Court’s opinion is available here. This has important implications in estate planning, particularly when determining whether to name individual beneficiaries or an accumulation […]

Passion Investing as a Spark to Your Life

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Bill Gates, Warren Buffet and over 50% of the Fortune 400’s The Richest People in America list have decided to give away their wealth for charitable pursuits. Of course, not many of us have that kind of money or are inclined to give away all we own. However, giving to charitable organizations is something that […]

The (Un)Usefulness of a Bypass Trust and How to Avoid the Consequences If You Are Stuck With One

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During the past several decades, estate planners recommended the use of AB Trusts for nearly every client. The use of AB Trusts was based upon the fact that the estate tax applicable exemption amount (“AEA”) was not automatically “doubled” if one was married. The AB Trust was developed to solve this problem, by providing that […]

What to Do with an Inherited IRA

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IRAs are among the largest assets inherited by heirs and beneficiaries. These accounts have been able to grow to such large amounts because income taxes are deferred until the owner begins to take distributions, usually after reaching age 70 ½.   Those who inherit an IRA must be very careful to follow the rules, which […]

Planning For Incapacity and Long-Term Care

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Planning For Incapacity and Long-Term Care With people living longer due to advances in medicine and changes in lifestyle, odds are that most of us will become disabled for some time before we die and may need long-term care. Unfortunately, too few plan for an event that is more likely to be a probability than […]

Time is Running Out to Save Unprecedented Amounts in Taxes

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Time is Running Out to Save Unprecedented Amounts in Taxes For the rest of 2012, every American can transfer up to $5.12 million free of federal gift, estate and generation-skipping transfer tax—and estate planners are doing everything they can to motivate their clients to take advantage of this unprecedented opportunity. To understand why this is […]

Naming a Guardian for Your Minor Child(ren)

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Naming a Guardian for Your Minor Child(ren) Parents with minor children need to name someone to raise them (a guardian) in the event both parents should die before the child becomes an adult. While the likelihood of that actually happening is slim, the consequences of not naming a guardian are great. If no guardian is […]

Life Insurance: How Much and What Kind?

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Life Insurance: How Much and What Kind? Life insurance can be an affordable way to provide for our children, spouse, a sibling, aging parents and others if we should die while they are depending on us. Life insurance proceeds can provide extra income to help pay ongoing household bills and child care; pay off a […]

Estate Planning for Women

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Estate Planning for Women  While estate planning is important for everyone, women especially need to understand estate planning and have a plan of their own in place. Here are some issues that are of particular interest to women and their estate planning. Incapacity. Because women, on average, live longer than men, there is an increased […]

Using an Advisory Team

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The Advisory Team Approach to Estate Planning Estate planning is not simply the documents prepared by an attorney, nor is it the insurance and financial plan recommended by a financial advisor. Properly done, estate planning encompasses at least the legal and financial elements, but it may include more, as estate planning often points out the […]

Get Ready for These Five New Taxes on January 1, 2013

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Now that the health care law has been declared constitutional, several significant provisions will become effective on January 1, 2013 Tax #1: 3.8% Surtax on Investment Income This new tax will be levied on net investment income if modified adjusted gross income is more than the “threshold amount” based on filing status. For married taxpayers […]