Boca Raton Estate Planning Law Firm Advises on Tax Matters
Estate planning should not solely focus on what happens after your death. You should consider how your estate plan affects your lifetime financial health and income tax liability. Walser & Herman Law Firm has created successful strategies for income tax planning for our Boca Raton and other South Florida clients for more than three decades.
Our attorneys evaluate how various estate planning tools can reduce income and estate taxes. Our on-site tax professionals and certified public accountants regularly handle complex matters related to estate planning and taxation.
Evaluating Your Income Tax Planning Strategies
You may benefit from a variety of legal instruments that preserve your assets during your lifetime, protect your wealth for future generations, protect your loved ones from creditors and reduce your income tax liabilities. For example, after reviewing your individual circumstances, the tax professionals at Walser & Herman Law Firm may recommend you:
- Transfer ownership of assets to trusts to minimize your taxable income
- Use IRAs, 401(k)s and other retirement structures that provide tax benefits while you save for your future
- Consider charitable giving strategies that allow you to reduce taxable income when you promise support of meaningful causes
- Establish private annuities that lower capital gains tax on asset sales and give your heirs rights to the funds in the future
- Give up to the annual and lifetime gift amounts recognized by the IRS to reduce your income taxes and reduce your wealth value at the time of your death to below the federal estate tax threshold
Trusts May Reduce Income and Estate Tax Liability
A trust is an instrument that establishes a legal relationship in which the trust owns property for the benefit of beneficiaries and which is maintained by a trustee. In actuality, the term “trust” refers to a broad range of legal instruments that must be precisely drafted in order to accomplish your specific objectives. In addition to satisfying your main purpose — such as passing property to a loved one with a disability, supporting a philanthropic cause or leaving property to a same-sex partner — a properly drafted trust can also limit your tax liability and your heirs’ estate tax liability. However, the type of trust and the language you employ in the legal document is crucial to its validity and to ultimately accomplishing your objectives.
Estate Tax Exemptions
Florida does not impose an estate tax. However, Florida estates are subject to federal death taxes. The IRS does grant an exemption for an estate that falls below a specified amount set each tax year by statute. Generally, the estate of a person who dies in 2014 is exempt from the estate tax if its value falls below $5,340,000, which is not much higher than the 2013 exemption level of $5,250,000. When considering how to avoid or reduce estate taxes, Walser & Herman Law Firm considers income and gift tax matters in our calculations.
Strategize Reductions in Income Tax Liability in Your Estate Plan
Walser & Herman Law Firm’s experienced estate planning attorneys and CPAs assist with effective income tax planning from our Boca Raton and Palm Beach Garden offices. Call (561) 750-1040 or send us an email to schedule a consultation.