While some Floridians may have estate plans in place that they feel will make certain their wishes are followed, some fail to pay attention to the beneficiary designations they have made on their life insurance policies, retirement and other accounts. Not paying attention to these beneficiaries can cause significant problems after a person has died, sometimes resulting in the proceeds passing in a manner that was not intended at all.
One problem that sometimes occurs is when people fail to update their designated insurance policy and retirement account beneficiaries after they divorce….
A living trust is a legal document that allows its creator, acting as the trustee, to hold title to assets inside of the trust. This may help those assets avoid probate, which may save thousands in legal fees and allow assets to be transferred much sooner. With a living trust, the grantor has the ability to revise it until he or she passes on. There are several other benefits that individuals may want to consider as well.
For parents with children, it may give them greater control over how and when their children have access to benefits inside of a retirement account or life insurance policy….
People in Florida who are setting up trusts as part of their estate plan may be surprised to learn that these types of instruments have become much more intricate over the years. For example, there are new roles and positions possible in irrevocable trusts that were largely not used in the past.
In general, trusts used to have just a trustee and perhaps a co-trustee. Now, although laws vary from state to state, there may be many roles associated with a trust including an administrative or general trustee, a distribution committee and a trust protector….
In 90 percent of high-net-worth families, most or all of that wealth is gone by the third generation. In some cases, the wealth is eroded because of capital gains and transfer taxes in addition to how assets are divided among the generations. Wealth can also be eroded through the generations because of a variety of business risks as well as attacks by third parties
However, it may be possible for an individual to keep his or her wealth and legacy alive for many generations by creating a family trust….
Florida residents who are using trusts as a part of their estate plan may want to change those trusts in light of new laws. Since 2013, federal income tax laws have changed so that the highest marginal rate is at a far lower adjusted gross income threshold for trusts than it is for individuals. As a result, it might be necessary to alter the terms of the trust so that the tax is assessed on the grantor or the trust’s beneficiaries….
Florida residents who are working on an estate plan may want to consider a Totten trust if they want to avoid making a will or going through the probate process. With a Totten trust, a person opens a bank account and makes deposits for a beneficiary. The person is able to withdraw money from the account or close the account altogether without the beneficiary’s permission, and the trust can be maintained without the beneficiary’s knowledge.
The money transfers to the beneficiary either on the owner’s death or with an action by the owner such as giving the beneficiary the passbook….
As the use of trusts for estate planning has become increasingly common, more and more Florida residents have drawn up the documents necessary to establish them. In some cases, a change in circumstances may necessitate an update or amendment to the trust document itself. Determining when such a change is needed may be tricky for most people.
A common scenario is when co-trustees are named in the document. In the event one of them passes away, it may be necessary to make amendments to make certain a co-trustee is appointed to take the decedent’s place….
Florida residents who have significant assets should avoid making the same estate planning mistakes that late actor James Gandolfini did with his own. When Mr. Gandolfini died in 2013 at age 51, he did so without having adequately planned for how his assets would pass to his heirs.
Mr. Gandolfini’s estate was worth $70 million at the time of his death. He failed to conduct good estate planning, making 80 percent of his estate subject to taxes and unprotected from them….
No parents or guardians like to think about what would happen to their children and assets if something were to happen to them but, if you have been successful in life and collected numerous assets or wealth in Florida, you might want to consider setting up a trust fund for your children. Though this may seem like a simple procedure, there are some common mistakes that parents make that can create roadblocks for their family.
One of the first mistakes made is choosing the wrong trustee to be in charge of the trust….
The purpose of a trust is to protect and hold a person’s assets for the benefit of another individual or an organization. A trust can specify how and when assets are passed onto this beneficiary. There are many different types of trusts, which are each designed for a particular purpose. One type of trust under Florida law is called a charitable trust.
The most common charitable trust is called a charitable remainder trust. When setting up a charitable remainder trust, the first step is to choose a charity to be the beneficiary….