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Comparison of Current Tax Rates, Trump Proposed Rates and Republican Blueprint Proposed Rates

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While there is considerable uncertainty among wealth planners and tax professionals regarding how the incoming administration will impact the federal tax code, nearly everyone agrees that change is imminent. With that in mind, we have assembled this chart, which compares current tax rates with President-elect Donald Trump’s proposed tax plan, and the House Republicans’ Blueprint plan (released in June, 2016).  Click here.

Thomson Reuters Checkpoint Calculates Projected Inflation-Adjusted Figures for Estate and Gift Taxes for 2016

ThinkstockPhotos-482577350Thomson Reuters Checkpoint has calculated the projected inflation-adjusted amounts for several transfer tax figures for 2016. These calculations are based on the average Consumer Price Index (CPI) for the 12-month period ending on August 31, 2015. Please note that these are the projected inflation-adjustments and not the official figures from the IRS which will be released later in the year.

The following relevant items are included within this report:

• The “unified credit” or lifetime gift tax and estate tax exemptions are projected to increase from $5,430,000 in 2015 to $5,450,000 in 2016.

• The generation-skipping transfer tax exemption is also projected to increase from $5,430,000 in 2015 to $5,450,000 in 2016.

• The gift tax annual exclusion is not projected to increase; it is projected to remain $14,000 in 2016.

• The gift

Boone County Treasurer Recognizes Same-Sex Marriage

Boone County Treasurer Recognizes Same-Sex Marriage

February 27, 2014

Authored by: Stephanie Moll and Alan Singer

With drafting assistance provided by our extern from Washington University School of Law, Rachael Lynch.

According to the Columbia Daily Tribune, effective immediately, same-sex marriages will be recognized in Boone County, Missouri for purposes of collecting unclaimed property.  This means that same-sex spouses legally married in a state other than Missouri (Missouri’s Constitution currently bans same-sex marriage) may have a right to some of the almost $68,000 held by the county.  Boone County Treasurer, Nicole Galloway, announced that this transition was merely an extension of the full-faith and credit that her office gives to legal documents from every state (and follows Missouri Governor Jay Nixon’s executive order that Missouri would recognize jointly filed income tax returns from legally-married same sex couples who file jointly for federal purposes).

Recluse Leaves Estate to Actors

Recluse Leaves Estate to Actors

February 21, 2013

Authored by: Stephanie Moll and Alan Singer

What to do when you have no friends or family to whom to leave your estate? Why not do what Ray Fulk of Illinois did? Fulk had no family to which he wanted to leave his estate, so he executed a Will leaving $5,000 to his favorite charity, and the rest of his nearly $1,000,000 estate to his two favorite actors, Kevin Brophy (perhaps most famously known for his role in the 1977 television show, Lucan) and Peter Barton (who spent five years on The Young and the Restless in the 80s and 90s and starred in Linda Blair’s 1981 movie, Hell Night), whom he had never met.

Wandry v. Commissioner is a Big Win in a Defined Value Case

Wandry v. Commissioner is a Big Win in a Defined Value Case

November 13, 2012

Authored by: Tiffany McKenzie and Alan Singer

UPDATE: On November 13, in an Action on Decision (“AOD”) appearing at 2012-46 IRB, the IRS did not acquiesce to the Tax Court’s decision in Wandry upholding fixed dollar gifts of LLC interests. An AOD is a formal memorandum prepared by the IRS Office of Chief Counsel that announces the future litigation position the IRS will take with regard to the court decision addressed by the AOD.

UPDATE:  On October 17, an Order dismissing the appeal was filed, following a stipulation by the parties on October 16 that the case be dismissed with prejudice.

UPDATE:  Notice of Appeal of the Wandry case was filed with the Tax Court, with the Appeal going to the 10th Circuit Court of Appeals.  Read about the initial holding here.

For the first time, in Wandry v. Commissioner, the Tax Court approved a defined value formula clause without a charitable component. In this federal gift tax

Why Do I need a Trust?

August 24, 2011

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Why Do I need a Trust?

August 24, 2011

Authored by: Alan Singer

In light of the increase in the estate tax exemption to $5,000,000, several clients of mine asked why they need a Revocable Trust if they don’t need advanced tax planning (at least in their minds).   The following discusses some of the reasons for doing so.

What is a Revocable Trust?

A Revocable Trust (also known as a “living trust” or an “inter-vivos trust”), is a legal arrangement in which the creator (referred to as a “grantor” or “settlor”) transfers, during life, all (or part) of his or her assets to a Trustee to be managed and administered pursuant to the terms designated in the trust until fully distributed to the beneficiary or beneficiaries.

Draft Form 706 for 2010 Decedents Reflects Law and Other Changes

August 8, 2011

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The IRS has released drafts of Form 706, United States Estate (and Generation-Skipping Transfer) Tax Return for estates of decedents dying after Dec. 31, 2009 and before Jan. 1, 2011, and its instructions. They reflect law changes made by the Tax Relief, Unemployment Insurance Reauthorization and Job Creation Act of 2010 (2010 Tax Relief Act), as well as indexing and other changes. Form 706 must be filed by the executor of any estate of a decedent dying in 2010 whose gross estate, plus adjusted taxable gifts and specific exemption is more than $5,000,000. Alternatively, for decedents dying in 2010, the estate may elect not have the estate tax apply, but rather to apply modified carryover basis treatment to property acquired or passing from the decedent. If such election is made, the executor would not file a Form 706, but rather the IRS has indicated that such election will be made

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