How the 2015-2016 Executive Budget Effects New York's Estate and Gift Tax System
Now that Governor Cuomo and legislative leaders have agreed on the 2015-2016 Executive Budget, there are questions about what's in store for New York’s estate and gift tax system as a result. Here is the lowdown: 1. Due to a drafting error, the estate tax was slated to disappear after March... »
President Obama Extends Tax Relief Provisions with Able Act
On December 19, 2014 (it seems so long ago now, doesn't it?), President Obama signed H.R. 5771, The Tax Increase Prevention Act.  This is a list of more than 50 tax extenders, extending certain relieving provisions in the Code for one more year through December 31, 2014.  (Brace yourself... »
Qualified Charitable Distributions (QCDs) from IRAs Reinstated for 2014
Qualified Charitable Distributions (QCDs), which allow individuals over 70 1/2 to contribute to public charities directly from their IRAs, expired at the end of 2013. However, on December 19, 2014, the President signed the Tax Increase Prevention Act of 2014, which reinstated QCDs up to a $100,000 limit for 2014. Contributions... »
Gift and Generation-Skipping Transfer Amounts for 2015--and Why You Should Plan Now.
The estate, gift and generation-skipping transfer (or GST--yes, another acronym) exclusion amounts have stayed relatively static, thanks to the American Taxpayer Relief Act (ATRA) of 2012. Initially set at $5 million and indexed for inflation, the current applicable exclusion amount is $5.34 million, set to increase to $5.43 million... »
Client Alert: HR 647 "Achieving a Better Life Experience Act" passes House of Representatives
On December 3, 2014, the House of Representatives passed HR647 by a vote of 404 to 17 the bill called "Achieving a Better Life Experience (ABLE) Act of 2014," which would provide for a new type of tax-advantaged savings program that allows individuals with disabilities to work, save, and... »
Gray Divorce? Hire a Financial Planner Even Before a Good Divorce Attorney
The divorce rate of people over 50 (aka "gray divorces") has doubled since 1990, wreaking havoc on many a retirement plan. When assets are cut in half but the costs of individual living increase, downsizing is often unavoidable--which makes many of these settlements acrimonious. We hate to be the... »
Who Wants to be a REIT? IRS Ruling Creates Opportunities for Tax Savings for Companies with Real Estate Assets
Windstream announced its plan to spin off telecommunication network assets into a separate publicly traded real estate investment trust (REIT). Before its announcement, Windstream had received a favorable private letter ruling from the IRS confirming that the spin off would be tax-free and that the spin-off's assets would qualify... »
Obama's Proposals on IRAs
Courtesy of Natalie Choate, here are some of the President's proposals that may impact IRA and retirement accounts after 2015: The Obama administration's 2015 budget proposals include some suggested changes to the IRA rules. The proposal would eliminate the "stretch" payout to non-spouse beneficiaries, which imposes a 5-year post-death payout... »
Unmarried Persons and Joint Assets
My partner just passed away, and I'm concerned about our joint assets and about the assets he left to me in the will. What should I do? It's hard during such a trying and difficult time to think about having to fight to maintain your lifestyle and get "back to... »
Joint Accounts and IRAs for Non-Married Persons
What is Joint Tenants with Rights of Survivorship (JTWROS) and how can it help us in our joint ownership? JWTROS is a specific type of joint ownership that ensures the surviving partner will be named sole owner of remaining funds upon the death of the first partner. Due to several... »
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