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Welcome to this session of grand rounds, a collection of posts I have discovered in the blogosphere and have found of interest and hope you do too.
This offering of Grand Rounds looks at articles from around the web that deal with issues surrounding death and passing assets to your heirs.
There is a saying that there is nothing certain except for death and taxes.
Unfortunately, without proper planning, your death can cause your estate far more taxes than it needed to pay.
If you would like to pass on as much of your hard-earned assets to your heirs instead of Uncle Sam, it is imperative to have a plan in place.
Fortunately FI Physician has you covered in, “Who is going to pay the taxes? IRA Legacy Planning.”
Another scenario where your estate gets a haircut, and therefore your heirs inherit less, is if the probate court system is involved.
In order to avoid probate court it is important to have a well constructed estate plan in place.
I recently created a trust as part of my estate plan and it truly gives me a peace of mind knowing that my loved ones will be provided for after I am gone.
Hiring a profession to create an estate plan can run thousands of dollars, which makes most of us hesitate in proceeding with this important step.
If you find yourself in this situation, CNBC offers some helpful advice in, “Can’t afford an estate plan? Here’s what you can do without spending a fortune.”
For most, the process of creating a trust can be quite intimidating.
As mentioned above I created a revocable living trust as part of my estate plan (upon my death this living trust becomes irrevocable and the wishes I have laid down become officially set in stone).
I was quite naive in the beginning when it came to starting the process and tried to read up on the various trusts available and on how to go about creating them.
You are in luck because Financial Residency has put a lot of this information into one informative article, “Living Trusts For Physicians: What You Need To Know.”
I have previously written about Wimpy, the character from Popeye, being a financial genius with his catchphrase, “I will gladly pay you Tuesday for a hamburger today.”
For most individuals deferring taxes as far into the future as possible is the best option to pay as little as possible (paying those taxes with far less valuable dollars thanks to currency debasement as well as typically being in a lower tax bracket once you stop working).
You know what is even better than that?
Never having to pay those deferred taxes at all.
This happens thanks to Step-Up Basis (which currently is still possible but has come under the scrutiny of lawmakers recently).
White Coat Investor gives some insight of this nifty tax gift in, “Step-Up in Basis-What You Need To Know.”
We all make mistakes.
Most of the time these mistakes can be rectified and we move on, learning from the experience.
However estate planning is unforgiving when it comes to making mistakes.
Upon death any mistakes encountered cannot be simply removed as you will no longer be here to correct it.
If you want your assets to be distributed as intended, you must ensure that all documents in your estate plan support your wishes.
Kevin MD points out some potential pitfalls is estate planning in, “8 estate planning mistakes for physicians to avoid.”
Hope you enjoyed the reading material.
Have a great rest of the week.
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