Estate Planning

To gift, or not to gift

By Allen J. Falke, Mirick, O’Connell, DeMallie & Lougee, LLP

The topic of gifting assets is often an important discussion in the world of estate planning. Generally, a main point of gifting is to remove assets from the estate of the donor to avoid potential estate taxes on the asset.

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Estate Planning

Overview of Italian use and taxation of trusts

By Prof Stefano Loconte, Loconte & Partners

Although Italy is a civil law country, it has recognised the common law trust since 1992 with the adoption of The Hague convention of July 1985, but up until now, the Italian civil law code has not contained any provisions concerning trusts. However, it is possible to set up a trust with foreign law subject to The Hague Convention and in accordance with public policy. In Italy, domestic trusts are considered to be those that have only their proper law as a foreign element.

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Estate Planning

New Zealand Foreign Trusts under the spotlight

By Bethan Boscher, Morrison Kent

Following the recent media attention to the New Zealand Foreign Trust (“NZFT”) industry, John Shewan, appointed by the New Zealand Government to conduct a review on the product, has released his report and recommended that the NZFT offering is retained but with a significant increase in disclosure requirements. But what does this mean in practice for NZFTs and can New Zealand continue to maintain its high international reputation by continuing its NZFT industry?

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Estate Planning

Saving Estate Taxes with an Irrevocable Life Insurance Trust

By Robert S. Jacobson, Kutchins, Robbins & Diamond, Ltd. (KRD)

Few people realize that, even though they may have a modest estate, their families may owe hundreds of thousands of dollars in estate taxes because they own a life insurance policy with a death benefit that could exceed the current estate tax exemption of 5.43 million dollars. This is because life insurance proceeds, while not subject to federal income tax, are considered part of your taxable estate and are subject to federal estate tax.

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Estate Planning

Italy: An urgent call for estate planning

By Prof Stefano Loconte and Michele Cecchi, Loconte & Partners

A draft bill has been recently introduced to the Italian Parliament which aims to amend the currently levied gift tax and inheritance tax. Although the hearings on the proposed bill have not started yet, it is true that there has been a lot of talk regarding this issue lately, and it is highly foreseeable that in the very near future, a radical change will be applied to the legislation to such an extent that will be considerably detrimental to taxpayers (possibly by means of a sudden intervention by the Government instead of a long discussed reform by Parliament).

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Estate Planning

College Supplies in Check: What about Critical Documents?

By Emily Kirtley Hanna, Dressman Benzinger LaVelle psc

When preparing to send a child over the age of 18 off to college or into the workforce, parents often overlook the need to ensure certain estate planning documents are in place. If the young adult were to get ill while at school or get injured on the job, parents are no longer provided with legal authority, as a natural guardian, and may not have the ability to speak with medical professionals or make decisions on their behalf, without the proper authorisations in place.

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Estate Planning

The New UK Succession Rules – A Brief Overview

By David J Kidd, Citroen Wells

When a person dies “intestate”, that is without leaving a valid will disposing of the whole of his property, the distribution of his estate is governed in the UK by special legal rules. These intestacy rules typically prescribe that the estate passes to certain surviving family members or relatives in prescribed proportions and a prescribed manner, whether absolutely or in trust. The rules take effect automatically without the intervention of a Court application.

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Estate Planning

Advanced Planning Will Minimize or Eliminate Estate Taxes

By Allen Kutchins, Kutchins, Robbins & Diamond LTD

Advanced estate planning during one’s lifetime will minimize or eliminate estate taxes. It is a continual process and is most effective when a plan is in place and it works over a period of time. Following are some of KRD’s favorite planning techniques; however, there are many more available. Implementing these can assure that high networth clients will minimize or pay no federal estate taxes.

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