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December 2016 Archives

Tips for handling estate administration work in 2017

Becoming the administrator of an estate can be daunting. Whether you're dealing with a small family estate or a large estate that involves corporate or creative resources, you probably have a long list of things to get done and not that much experience handling such matters. Working with an estate law professional can help you answer the experience and knowledge issue, and setting strong goals can help you get through your estate administration list this year.

Gifting during the holidays can be good for your estate tax

We've covered before that many people never have to worry about the federal estate tax since the threshold is over $5 million. It doesn't take that much these days to reach the threshold, though, especially if you own some property, a farm or a business. If you're worried you might hit the threshold and face up to 40 percent federal estate taxes, then consider a life-time habit of cash giving.

What mistakes can you make on beneficiary forms?

Mistakes in completing beneficiary forms for retirement accounts, investment portfolios or IRAs can cause some issues in probate and estate administration. In the best cases, beneficiary forms are aligned with all the other plans you have for your estate. In the worst cases, they don't exist or are opposite the information in your estate. Here's a look at three mistakes you can make with regard to beneficiary forms.