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November 2013 Archives

Ensure your estate plan holds up

Orlando families working out how their patriarchs and matriarchs will pass on assets after death may want to hear what one respected financial adviser has to say on the matter. To start, avoiding errors caused by the process's complexity is the first step to successful estate planning. After that, making sure the correct paperwork is filed and updated to reflect any changes in circumstances should be at the top of a family's estate administration tasks.

Estate planning tips

Estate planning is not a comfortable topic for a lot of Florida residents. Only 43 percent of Americans have a will although most people understand that a beneficiary must be designated or default state regulations, such as probate court, come into play. Some people don't understand the value of assets they have, such as insurance policies, and have people designated as beneficiaries people with whom they were once close, but are no longer.

No estate rights despite acquittal

Orlando residents may be interested in a New York judge's November ruling that barred a woman who was acquitted of murdering her three children from sharing in their $350,000 estate. This estate planning case set precedent, addressing the state's Son of Sam legislation, which prohibits criminals from profiting off of their crimes. The judge decreed that a successful insanity defense is irrelevant when establishing if the defendant will inherit the victims' assets.

Estate planning and state taxes

Currently 19 states and the District of Columbia have no state estate taxes.As a result, many states such as Florida that have no state income or estate taxes attract people with large estates who live in other jurisdictions as they plan for the future. Although you might not worry simply because you don't live in an applicable state, you should think twice before you become too complacent. If you move, you could find yourself living in a state that has an estate tax, or your state could decide to implement such a tax with an eye towards the revenue it could bring in. For this reason, estate planning is more important than ever.

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