By now you’ve heard that Congress has acted — even if at the eleventh hour — and they made the estate tax ‘changes’ permanent. We can bet that permanence has some impact, but if later Congresses want or need to change the law, they’ll change it. In fact, this law has been changed many times since it was originally enacted. But remember to keep in mind that permanence doesn’t mean you don’t have to plan.

To summarize the ‘new’ tax law, here are the major provisions…
  • Federal gift, estate and generation skipping tax exemptions were set at $5 million per person adjusted for inflation. That means for 2013 the exemption amount is $5,250,000 per person
  • Married people can take advantage of higher exemptions, and with careful counsel could be entitled to over $10 in exemptions
  • Top tax rate on estates and gifts was raised from 35% to 40%
  • Portability or the ability of a spouse to use the unused portion of their deceased spouse’s exemption
  • The gift tax annual exclusion went from $13,000 to $14,000 per person per year
However, proper planning still affords certain protections for your legacy. For example…

  • making sure you pass assets the way you want
  • protecting the assets for the family in case of disability
  • protecting the assets from irresponsible children, a child’s creditors or a child’s divorce
  • providing for those we care about who have special needs
  • protecting a client’s assets from their creditors and unjustified litigation
  • ease of administration after someone passes

and possibly most of all…
  • capturing and treasuring your true Legacy and the impact you can have on your loved ones

Get the counsel you need to make sure that everything is done the way you want and take the time to preserve those things that mean the most to you and your loved ones.

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