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Estate Planner - January February 2017

in Estate, Trust & Probate, News

Here’s a brief glance at what you’ll find in the 2017 – Estate Planner – January February issue…

Carlin Comments – The Love-Letter Will (Part 1)

In the Estate of Eric Anthony Hand, an appellate court upheld the decision of the probate court denying the application of his widow and appellant therein, Natalie Hand, to admit to probate the purported will of her late husband, Eric. The parties were married in April 2014. Eric died on September 7, 2014. He was survived by Natalie and four minor children from a previous marriage. Eric’s former wife was Shannon who is the minor children’s mother. In searching for a will, the appellant discovered, in a box of love letters she received from Eric over the years, a three-page handwritten letter dated January 23, 2014 (the “Love Letter Will”). Unlike the other love letters, decedent Eric signed this letter with his full name. It consisted of three paragraphs. The last paragraph read as follows: “As my last will and testament, I appoint you the primary beneficiary of all I have and all I have worked for. With the complete trust that you will look after the children, my business interests and all other things that I have put together over the years and not let anyone try to deprive you of those things.” Read more 2017 – Estate Planner – Carlin Comments – The Love-Letter Will (Part 1)

IRS targeting FLPs

Proposed regs endanger valuation discounts for family-controlled entities

In August 2016, the IRS released its long-anticipated proposed regulations limiting the ability of family limited partnerships and other family-controlled entities to take advantage of valuation discounts. If the regulations are finalized as proposed, they’ll make it difficult, if not impossible, for these entities to use certain lapsing rights and liquidation restrictions to “devalue” interests for gift and estate tax purposes. This article details the proposed regs. A sidebar offers alternative estate planning strategies.

Is a noncharitable purpose trust right for you?

There are two trust types that don’t require one or more human beneficiaries: charitable trusts and noncharitable purpose (NCP) trusts. A charitable trust is the more common of the two, but an NCP trust could also be a formidable tool to help achieve one’s estate planning goals. This article explains how an NCP trust works and details its drawbacks.

3 reasons you should continue making lifetime gifts

Now that the gift and estate tax exemption has reached $5.49 million (for 2017), it may seem that gifting assets to loved ones is less important than it was in previous years. However, lifetime gifts continue to provide significant benefits, whether an estate is taxable or not. This article details three reasons why making lifetime gifts continues to make sense.

Estate Planning Red Flag

Your trust owns S corporation stock

S corporations must comply with several strict requirements or risk losing their tax-advantaged status. In an estate planning context, it’s critical that any trusts that own S corporation stock — or receive such stock through operation of an estate plan — be eligible shareholders. This brief article details four trust types that are eligible to be S corporation shareholders.