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December 2016 Archives

Are inheritance taxes fair?

In 2016, we saw the 100th-year anniversary of federal estate taxes. Congress passed the Revenue Act in 1916 to raise money for World War I. That was the first time the federal government taxed inheritances passed down to children. The Revenue Act only affected wealthy Americans with estates of $50,000 or more, which is the equivalent of about $1.1 million today.

Will congress end the tax benefits of an inherited IRA?

Affluent families across the United States often enjoy a tax strategy that uses inherited IRAs. A specified beneficiary can inherit an IRA under the current rules and not be required to pay taxes on the IRA as long as the money stays inside it. The money can continue to grow tax-deferred throughout the person's lifetime, and only a minimum of taxes will need to be paid on withdrawals.

No heirs? You still need solid estate planning

Do you consider yourself largely free of being responsible for other people? If so, then you are one of many Tennessee residents eschewing tradition by creating your own American dream. Often, this means living life without children. Even married couples choose not to have children, instead living their lives free of dependents. This means there is no need to worry so much about estate planning, right?

Surviving the estate administration process

When residents in the Davidson region of Tennessee are asked to assume the role of estate administrator, the wise ones give the matter serious thought before answering. If the answer is yes, you can be sure these individuals have weighed the scenario to the best of their ability and found they were up to the challenge. Unfortunately, the experience for many turns out to be more than they expected, leading to frustration and hardships on a personal level.

You may want a back up executor for your estate

Many people keep things simple when choosing an executor for their estate: They just go with a family member. In a lot of cases, it's actually ideal to use your spouse. After all, your spouse is the one who will see the most dramatic financial changes after you pass away, and he or she has the most invested in the estate with you. Giving the power to determine how assets are divided to anyone else may even offend your spouse.

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