Estate / Asset Protection Strategies

Your net worth doesn’t grow overnight. It involves hard work, focus and persistence. Unfortunately, unless you apply the same skills to preserving your estate, you can lose a good portion to estate taxes after you die. The problem: Transferring assets – even to your own family – can be a taxable event. That’s why you need to find creative, effective ways to build and preserve your estate.

However, there is no need to rush to your estate planning attorney immediately after Congress changes the tax code. However, it’s more imperative to review your estate plan after major life events—for example, the birth of a child, an illness or a divorce. You may also want to review your estate plan if you switch jobs or experience a sudden change in your family’s finances.

When reviewing your estate plan, make sure the language used doesn’t leave you vulnerable to changes in the law. For example, your plan may specify that a trust should be funded up to the current estate tax exemption or a certain percentage of that limit to maximize the benefits of the current law.

For example, consider the case of “AB trusts,” popular tools used by couples to pass assets to their heirs. One strategy for these trusts is to leave the full estate tax exemption to children while leaving the remainder of the estate to the surviving spouse. But if the exemption amount has increased since you drafted your estate plan, you could end up giving your entire estate to your children—leaving your spouse with nothing.

The estate tax doesn’t have to cause you stress. We can help you determine the appropriate solutions for making your estate plan less vulnerable to changes, while still helping you toward achieving your estate planning goals. To do so, we consider:

  • Will and trust design strategies;
  • Property ownership alternatives, including the review of titling and beneficiaries to coordinate with your overall plan;
  • Estate tax reduction techniques;
  • Insurance analysis;
  • Qualified plan distribution alternatives;
  • Family-gifting strategies;
  • Charitable planning; and
  • Employee stock option optimization.

Lincoln Financial Advisors Corp. and its representatives do not provide legal or tax advice. You may want to consult a legal or tax advisor regarding any legal or tax information as it relates to your personal circumstances.

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Latest News

Financial and Economic Brief - December 12, 2017

• Powell’s Early Policy Views - Jerome Powell appears set to let the tax cut “run its course” through the economy as weak growth in wages and inflation promote his view that the economy remains “underpowered”.

• November Jobs Report Strong - According to the November jobs report released on Friday, employers added 228,000 jobs in November and the unemployment rate remained at 4.1%.

• Launch of Bitcoin Futures - Derivatives exchange Cboe Global Markets launched its bitcoin futures late yesterday, marking the first time investors could get access to the market via a mainstream regulated exchange.

Financial and Economic Brief - December 5, 2017

• Mixed Numbers for Automakers - Major automakers posted mixed U.S. November new vehicle sales on Friday and predicted a competitive December as they rushed to sell vehicles and lift their 2017 numbers.

• CVS to Buy Aetna - CVS Health is buying Aetna for $69 billion in cash and stock in a deal that “reflects a rapidly shifting health care landscape”.

• Upcoming Fed Rate Hikes - The U.S. Federal Reserve is “almost certain” to raise interest rates later in December, a majority of whom also now expect three more rate rises in 2018.

Financial and Economic Brief - November 28, 2017

• Consumer Sentiment Rose More Than Expected - U.S. consumer sentiment saw “slight” gains in November compared to the mid-month reading, though the index remained below the decade high reached in October.

• Publisher of Time Agrees to Be Sold - The publisher of Time, People and Sports Illustrated agreed yesterday to be sold to another big magazine publisher, Meredith.

• New Home Sales at 10-Year High - Sales of new U.S. single-family homes unexpectedly rose 6.2% in October, to a seasonally adjusted annual rate of 685,000 units, amid strong demand across the country.

Financial and Economic Brief - November 21, 2017

• October Home Building, One-Year High - U.S. home building jumped 13.7% in October, the highest level since October 2016, likely because communities affected by the hurricanes started replacing houses damaged by flooding.

• Marvell Bids on Cavium - Marvell Technology has bid around $6 billion for Cavium in a cash-and-stock deal that would create a chip maker to compete with industry giants.

• Wall Street Slightly…Higher - Wall Street indexes were higher on Monday morning, as gains in technology stocks offset a drop in health shares.

Financial and Economic Brief - November 14, 2017

• Oil Prices May Stay Steady - Oil prices have been rising since June, increasing about 33%. British Petroleum boss Bob Dudley says that may be all for now.

• Coal’s Bleak Future - The coal industry has seen only modest gains in jobs and production this year, mostly from a temporary uptick in foreign demand.

• Qualcomm Rejects Takeover Proposal - Qualcomm recently rejected Broadcom's $103 billion takeover proposal, noting the bid “significantly undervalues” the wireless telecommunications company.

Financial and Economic Brief - November 7, 2017

• October Jobs Report - The U.S. economy added 261,000 jobs in October and the unemployment rate was 4.1%.

• Gas Prices on the Rise - Gasoline prices have risen for most of the U.S. at a time in the year when there is usually “relief” at the pump.

• Dudley Leaving Fed - William Dudley, “among the most influential monetary policymakers throughout the financial crisis and its aftermath”, expects to retire by mid-2018, before his term officially ends in January 2019.