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Estate planning for people with substantial assets

On Behalf of | Oct 20, 2016 | Firm News, Trusts |

Angel investors in Ohio may use careful estate planning in order to pass more of their assets on to their children or other beneficiaries. The federal government currently has a lifetime exemption amount of $5.45 million for estate taxes. For couples, that amount is $11 million. People who have substantial assets may use estate planning laws to their advantage in order to reduce the size of their estates and lower their tax burden.

Investing in startup companies can allow people to maximize potential returns. If the investor gifts stock to a trust that they have established for the benefit of their heirs, the value that is taken away from the lifetime exemption will be the value of the stock at the time it is gifted. When a startup is new and has the potential to become very successful, gifting the stock when its value is low may allow the stock to increase in value after it has been placed in the trust. This could allow the investor to pass the stock to heirs without being taxed on the amount of increase.

Trusts may also be written in a manner that the heirs must spend according to its terms. This can help the beneficiaries to be more prudent. Just as important, trusts can protect assets from the reach of creditors or divorces.

People whose estates are very large may want to consult with estate planning attorneys for how to best handle their assets. An attorney may advise a client about the different types of estate planning tools that are available. The lawyer could also help draft the needed documents in order to minimize taxes.

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