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Legal Notices

November 22, 2017

The Internal Revenue Code provides each taxpayer's estate with an estate tax exemption of $5,490,000 (adjusted annually), and allows the estate of a taxpayer whose spouse has survived to elect to "transfer" or "port" (subject, of course, to limitations and exceptions i...

August 23, 2017

Each taxpayer is allowed - for federal gift, estate, and Generation Skipping Tax purposes - an exemption of $5,490,000 (for 20017 - the amount adjusts annually).  For decedents' estates who do not take full advantage of the exemption, the IRS Code allows - for gift and...

August 1, 2017

The Generation Skipping Transfer Tax was instituted in 1986. Events and Transfers subject to this tax occur in various situations. And when they occur (even if there is no tax due) GSTT tax returns are required. Worse, if there is tax, the trustee may have personal lia...

July 13, 2017

Income tax is - or should be - part of modern estate planning.  This is one of a series of entries on this "hot" topic.

State jurisdiction over trust income tax (that is, what state(s) a trust must pay taxes to) varies widely state to state.  Some states base taxab...

March 15, 2017

So much of estate planning has focused on protection of the "non-taxable threshold" - otherwise known as a "credit shelter trust".  In Massachusetts, that trust is usually limited to $1,000,000.  In families where the first spouse passed away prior to the increase in t...

March 3, 2017

"Portability" of a decedent's unused federal estate tax exemption refers to the election to add the exemption of a "first to die" spouse that is not needed to reduce federal estate tax to zero to the surviving spouse's federal exemption.  Availing the surviving spouse...

January 18, 2017

Assets are often held in trust for the trust beneficiary (as opposed to being distributed to the beneficiary) with the hope that trust assets would be unreachable by a claim made against the beneficiary.  Whether this protection exists in practice calls for a detailed...

August 3, 2016

Congress had all good intent when they introduced the idea of rolling a decedent's unused federal estate tax exemption over to his or her surviving spouse (so-called "portability"). Use of portability is - not surprisingly - more involved than first meets the eye.  How...

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August 1, 2017

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