What is the Gift Tax and Who Pays It?

While the common saying is “there’s no such thing as a free lunch,” some might argue that there is no such thing as a free gift. What is the Gift Tax, and who pays it? The gift tax is a federal tax applied to the transfer of money or property from one person to another,

Financial vs Medical Power of Attorney: What’s the Difference?

Your estate planning toolkit contains many different documents, each with its own unique purpose. We have all heard the term “power of attorney,” but what is the difference between a financial and medical power of attorney? While both financial and medical powers of attorney allow someone to make decisions on behalf of another, each serves

Understanding the Basics of Estate Planning

Does hearing the phrase “estate planning” cause your eyes to glaze over or make you want to hum a tune to block out the incoming conversation? Admittedly, estate planning can be an intimidating topic, especially if you have no understanding of what it entails. But at its core, estate planning is about ensuring that you

What are the 4 Major Types of Taxes to Consider in Estate Planning?

It is often said that there are only 2 certainties in life: death and taxes. True or not, estate planning is still an important step in managing at least 2 of life’s certainties. Estate planning is the process of ensuring that your assets and belongings are passed to those you desire to receive them. Usually

What Is the Difference Between a Trust and a Will?

When it comes to estate planning, the most important consideration is that it works for you. You have choices in how your loved ones are cared for and how your worldly possessions are distributed after you are gone. Choosing the best type of estate planning tool depends on your specific circumstances; here, let’s look at

What is a Trustee?

There are many people involved in a trust; the grantor who creates the trust, the beneficiaries who receive benefits from the trust, as well as the trustee who administers the trust. While the obvious relationship involved in a trust is between the grantor and beneficiaries, the middleman between the two is the trustee. A trustee

What is Trust Litigation and What Should you Know About it?

A trust is a fiduciary arrangement that allows a person or entity to hold and control assets on behalf of another individual. When there is a disagreement between the trustee (the person in control of the assets) and the beneficiary (the person who ultimately benefits from the trust), a lawsuit may be filed. Generally, a

Are Estate Planning Fees or Estate Administration Fees Tax Deductible?

Estate planning is an investment in yourself and your loved ones, for now and the future. Estate planning comes with a wide range of costs including legal fees, accounting fees and appraisal fees. Are estate planning fees tax deductible? In general, estate planning fees are not allowable deductions on your personal income tax return. If

Can a Lawyer Help with a Business Plan?

Starting a business seems simple enough…you have an idea, create a name, consider sources for funding, start writing a business plan…and then what? Suddenly you realize that there are many decisions involved, and each one of them could make or break your success.   Decisions to consider when making a business plan:   Type of

How Do You Know if Probate is Necessary?

When a loved one passes away, the nominated personal representative must distribute the decedent’s property according to the terms of the decedent’s will. The process of carrying out these final wishes and passing of property to beneficiaries can seem drawn out and complicated. Many wills must go through probate to complete this process, but how