Estate Planning Resources

Estate Planning

Browse our resource library for information about all aspects of smart estate planning.

A Widow’s Worst Nightmare

Making assumptions about what will happen to your assets or those of your loved ones when someone passes can be a dangerous game. Learn about some of the ways state laws may divide your assets, and how preparing your will early can spare your spouse unexpected hardships down the road.

Planning Your Legacy

Every generation leaves behind a legacy for their children and grandchildren. What will yours be? Consider more than just your financial assets when determining what you will leave behind for your family.

The Top 7 Questions for an Effective Beneficiary Audit

A beneficiary audit makes sure that the people you want to inherit your retirement accounts actually are set to do so. A good beneficiary audit makes sure that the right people are going to get the right accounts and that any applicable tax and investment issues are carefully considered. For a beneficiary audit to truly be effective, you must ask yourself the right questions.

Famous Estate Planning Blunders

Though you may already know never to get into a land war in Asia thanks to the 1987 classic The Princess Bride, you probably are less familiar with some of these very real celebrity estate planning blunders.  Learn from their mistakes before approaching your own estate planning.

An Overview of Asset Transfer Strategies

Get to know the different strategies that can help you when you need to move assets around. Please note that many regulations for asset transfers are under state laws. Work with your financial planner and lawyer so they can help guide you through the process when the time comes.

Last Will & Testament: 14 Wishes

While wills are very necessary for a person to have in place, there are specifics that aren’t often included in the documents. Adding a letter that details locations, preferences, accounts, logistics, etc. can be very helpful to those who are taking care of your estate.

7 Estate Planning Things to do in the Time of Coronavirus

In this time of a global pandemic where many are making health and safety a bigger priority in their life, many have begun to make sure they are prepared for the future and know that their families are protected in the event of them getting seriously ill, or worse.

If you have started thinking about estate planning or updating your current plan, now is an ideal time to do so. Among the health reasons, there are also financial reasons due to the passing of the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act of 2017, and more recently, the SECURE Act to update your planning and documents. Don’t wait until it’s too late to ensure your estate planning is in order and communicated clearly.

Financial Planning for the Generations

It’s normal to consider your family when you are strategizing your finances. Children may be approaching college soon, grandparents may need assistance in care, etc. Talk with your financial advisor to make sure yours, and your family’s, bases are covered – because one generation’s decisions often impact the lives of the others.

Charitable Gifting Through Foundations 

A community foundation is a little-known, viable alternative to creating a private foundation. Giving to your local community foundation can be a good way to create a local family (or personal) legacy, develop local relationships or receive the highest tax benefit for your charitable contributions.

Estate Planning Under the New Tax Act: Everyone Needs a Review 

Under the new tax act, only eight of every ten thousand estates will owe federal estate tax until the act sunsets in eight years. The estate exemption amount has doubled, but the increase doesn’t eliminate all of the estate planning issues and it could create others. The sunset itself poses new questions – aggressively gift now or wait? Talk to your financial advisor about the new changes and strategize the best way to react.