Please: get the correct acknowledgement if you want to deduct that property contribution

Robert Lynn / June 30, 2016
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“Close” counts with horseshoes and hand grenades. Unfortunately, it doesn’t count for entitlement to deduct a charitable contribution, once the amount claimed exceeds a trigger point. When that happens, the taxpayer’s own records – no matter how convincing – won’t suffice. There has to be an acknowledgement from the charity itself that follows the law […]

Prince Leaves a Complex, Unplanned Estate

Manish Bhatia / May 4, 2016
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Unfortunately, too many recent newsletters have focused on the death of musical legends. This month left us with another untimely death. Prince, whose legal name was Prince Rogers Nelson, died on April 21st at his Paisley Park recording studio and home in Chanhassen, Minnesota. As unbelievable as it may seem, according to his sister, Tyka […]

The Right Way to Inherit

Manish Bhatia / December 20, 2015
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While an inheritance is often considered a gift by the recipient, from a tax perspective, there optimal ways to inherit a retirement account. From the language used to designate the beneficiaries to important IRS-imposed deadlines, the manner in which a retirement account is inherited can significantly affect its value. If you are the beneficiary of […]

Year-End Estate Planning To-Do List

Manish Bhatia / December 5, 2015
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The end of the year is an ideal time to review your current estate plan and confirm that you are taking advantage of all planning opportunities available to you. This includes not only tax planning, but also asset protection, probate avoidance, beneficiary designations and changes in your family and financial situations. On the other hand, […]

Questions To Ask Aging Parents

Jennifer Santini / June 22, 2015
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We are often approached by clients, who have aging parents, to find out the best way to raise the topic of estate planning with their parents. Typically the client is in the process of drafting his or her own estate plan and they realize quickly how messy the administration of an estate can be if […]

Privacy and your estate plan

Maggie Green / January 19, 2015
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The British government announced recently that 4 million historical wills have been digitized and are now available for download by the public. As in the United States, these documents were previously available by traveling to the probate court and searching the available public records. Now anyone with an internet connection and a credit card can […]

Estate Planning Myth #1: I don’t need a Will – I don’t have kids

Erika Stein Rosenhagen / April 2, 2014
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Even if you don’t have a Will, you still do have an estate plan. Without a Will, it’s the state’s version of estate planning that prevails through your state’s intestacy statute. The state’s plan will vary based on the state in which you live and where you own property, but there will be a distribution […]

Governor Dayton’s Estate & Gift Tax Simplification Proposal

Jamie Held / March 11, 2014
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Last week, Governor Dayton issued proposed tax cuts of $616 Million. The tax cuts are aimed at middle class Minnesotans and businesses. The proposed tax cuts include simplifying the state estate tax and eliminating the state gift tax. The estate and gift tax proposals would yield $43 Million in tax relief for Minnesotans.

The Debt Left Behind by a Spouse

Jayne Sykora / November 4, 2013
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As discussed in a previous post, preparing for a death of a spouse can be extremely difficult and nearly unbearable to even think about. However, it is important to understand the financial impacts so that, if and when the time comes, the surviving spouse is equipped with the right information and is organized. This preparation […]

Property and Revocable Trusts – MN Estate Tax Update

Maggie Green / October 23, 2013
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Individuals that own property in multiple states often consider placing the property into a revocable trust for planning purposes. While this can be an effective planning technique, there are some important points to consider. For purposes of the new Minnesota estate tax [2], a Minnesota resident’s gross estate includes any property that is physically located […]

Beneficiary Designations and Estate Planning for Retirement Accounts

Maggie Green / October 7, 2013
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One of the most commonly overlooked items I see in client’s estate plans and during probate administrations is retirement accounts and their beneficiary designations. I think this has to do with the cumbersome nature of updating beneficiary designations.  You call the plan administrator or custodian who sends you paperwork with tiny print and all sorts […]