Are you thinking about passing assets on to your next generation? Whether your parents are aging and your own children are reaching adulthood, or you simply realize that you need to focus on wealth-transfer plans, we can help you plan and execute a strategy to shift the wealth you’ve created to the possession and control of the next generation

Among some of the issues to consider are your own family values, relationships, business continuity, portfolio strategy, taxes and ownership structures. Ultimately, it boils down to 3 things, control, responsibility and timing.

Common goals include:

  • Maximizing your wealth transfer to the next generation
  • Protecting your heirs from creditors
  • Controlling assets
  • Avoiding or limiting estate taxes, both federal and state.
  • Incorporating your charitable efforts

Here are some techniques to support your objectives:

Annual gifting:

This is a simple way to pass wealth to your next generation. Each individual may gift up to $15,000 annually to each heir, $30,000 for married couples. There’s no gift tax return required as long as you stay within that limit.


Revocable Trust:

Revocable trusts, commonly called “living trusts,” are an effective estate-planning tool for avoiding the costs and hassles of probate, preserving privacy and preparing your estate for ease of transition after you pass away. Unlike in a Will, assets in a living trust will generally pass to heirs sooner


Irrevocable Life Insurance Trust:

With an irrevocable life insurance trust, you obtain a life insurance policy and the owner is a trust outside your taxable estate. Each year, you gift premiums to the trust to pay for the policy. When you pass away, the death benefit is paid out in trust, avoiding income and estate taxes. Thus, it accomplishes the goals of protecting assets from creditors and allows you some control over assets while avoiding estate taxes.


Grantor Retained Annuity Trusts:

This estate planning strategy can freeze an estate. That means that you place most of the future growth of certain assets outside of your taxable estate. You choose assets that have a high growth potential or present a valuation discount, aiming to earn more than the interest rate set by the government. The difference between the growth and interest rate is what remains outside the estate. All taxes are paid by the person lending assets to the trust so that the assets outside your taxable estate grow income tax free.

These are just a few of the many estate-planning strategies you can use to help you effectively transfer assets to your next generation. Experts often suggest that you:

  • Begin with a family dialogue
  • Hire an experienced estate planning attorney to help guide you
  • Don’t overlook the amount that you need to satisfy your own lifestyle

Wealth transfer is inevitable whether it be planned and orderly or expensive and chaotic. You need to decide what’s the best strategy for your situation and identify your asset goals.

Contact Attorney AmySue Taylor RN, MSN, JD to being your estate planning today.