As you plan for retirement, you might focus on building assets and creating income strategies. But once you’ve built an estate, at some point you need to address your final wishes. The estate planning process is designed to help you pass on those assets to your loved ones, or even a deserving charity. As you make these decisions, you must also consider the impact of income taxes, and other responsibilities that might be passed on to your heirs.
If you’re a business owner, you face an even more complicated dilemma. What will happen to your business when you’re gone? What about your partners and employees? Can you be replaced? Should your business be sold to provide for your family?
It’s no wonder many people delay these difficult and emotional estate planning decisions, but it’s a necessity we must all face. With a team of insurance professionals, tax professionals, financial advisors and estate planning attorneys by your side, you can be sure that your estate plan efficiently addresses all of your wishes.
A last will and testament is one of the most common methods for leaving property to heirs and specifying your final wishes. A thorough will can help your survivors through the difficult time after your passing, by allowing for an efficient transfer of your assets. You might also be able to avoid some tax burdens for your loved ones. But because the law can be complicated, you should consult our professionals to help ensure that your will adequately protects your beneficiaries and accomplishes your goals.
What kind of legacy do you want to leave to your loved ones? What about your favorite charity or community organization? From making sure your family is comfortable, to accomplishing your life’s dream, we can help you meet your legacy planning goals in the most efficient way possible.
Extended Care Planning
We can all look forward to a longer life, thanks to increased longevity, but more time in our older years can also mean a higher chance of needing extended nursing care at some point. With the average cost of long term care at $229 per day or $6,965 per month (for a private room in a nursing home), you should think carefully about how you plan to cover this expense. We can help you decide whether your income is sufficient to cover the cost of long term-care, or demonstrate alternate methods of providing for this need in your retirement years.
Trust Funding Strategies
A trust can be one of the best ways to transfer property to heirs or even charitable organizations, while avoiding certain tax complications. It’s important to choose the right type of trust, and to consider various tax regulations, so that you can ensure your money is distributed according to your wishes. We can help you sort through your options, weighing the benefits of different types of trusts, so that you can appropriate fund a trust that accomplishes your goals.
Surviving Spouse Analysis and Planning Asset Strategies for Divorcees
Most couples will not pass away at the same time as one another, and it can be difficult to predict which of you will survive the other. We will analyze your income situation for either scenario, so that you can determine whether your surviving spouse will be financially secure after your death. Of course, some people also find themselves single in retirement due to divorce. Since retirement income planning can be more complicated for singles, let our team of professionals show you your options for asset and income protection.
Estate Tax Mitigation
Depending upon the size of your estate, your assets could be subject to hefty estate taxes after you pass away. That’s not a burden you want to pass on to your loved ones. Luckily, there are ways to mitigate this problem, by balancing your assets across estate tax-exempt allocations such as trusts, different types of life insurance, and other financial vehicles. A good estate plan considers not only how you pass on your assets, but the different ways in which you can shelter them from excessive taxation.
You might choose to place some of your assets into a trust. This plan carries a variety of benefits, but it can also be complicated. We can help you efficiently manage your trust(s), avoid potential pitfalls, and help you meet your long-term goals.
As you plan for your financial future, protecting your assets will become a central part of your overall strategy. But at all times, you should also consider the ultimate impact of your estate plan. You can actually remove too many assets from your estate, which causes your surviving spouse to lose their minimum allowable exclusion amount. We work to strike a balance between protecting your assets and maintaining this important tax exclusion for your spouse.