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 - February 13, 2018

• Economy “Still Strong” - According to New York Fed President William Dudley, the economy is “likely to continue to grow above its normal pace”.

• Oil Prices Falling - Oil prices fell 10% this week, dropping below $60 a barrel for the first time in 2018.

• Stock Market Up - Wall Street’s main indexes rose for a second day today, fueled by gains in technology and financial stocks.

Financial and Economic Brief - February 7, 2018

• December Trade Deficit Increased - The U.S. trade deficit increased 5.3% to $53.1 billion, the highest level since October 2008.

• Machines Making Trading Decisions - Wall Street's recent 1,175 drop wasn’t driven by nervous portfolio managers or any other human traders.

• UK Single Market Access in Question - The European Union (EU) wants the power to restrict UK access to the single market during a transition period after Britain leaves the bloc, if it violates agreed upon rules.

Financial and Economic Brief - January 30, 2018

• Increase in Spending, Decrease in Savings - U.S. consumer spending rose 0.4% in December as demand for goods and services increased, but savings dropped to a 10-year low.

• Dr. Pepper Snapple and Keurig Green Mountain Merger - Dr. Pepper Snapple Group and Keurig Green Mountain plan to merge in a deal that creates a beverage giant, with roughly $11 billion in pro forma combined.

• Wall Street Down at Opening - Wall Street fell on Monday from record levels last week, weighed down by a 1.42% drop in Apple shares after a report said it would make fewer iPhone Xs.

Financial and Economic Brief - January 23, 2018

• Global Growth Forecasts - The International Monetary Fund (IMF) has revised global growth forecasts for 2018 and 2019 higher by 0.2 percentage points to 3.9%.

• Q4 2017 Growth - Economists say that the economy “quite possibly” grew at a better than 3% annual pace in Q4, as it did in the both Q2 and Q3.

• Stocks Stay Even - World stocks and U.S. bond markets “shrugged off” a government shutdown in Washington, the dollar fell near three-year lows, and the euro resumed its strong start in 2018.

Financial and Economic Brief - January 16, 2018

• Strong Holiday Sales - According to the National Retail Federation, holiday sales rose 5.5% compared to last year, marking the largest jump since the end of the Great Recession.

• Wells Fargo Shares Lower - Shares of Wells Fargo fell after reporting a mixed performance for Q4 2017. They reported revenue of $22.05 billion, which was below the $22.64 billion forecast of financial analysts.

• Consumer Prices Increase - U.S. consumer prices recorded their largest increase in 11 months in December at 0.3%, on gains in the cost of rental accommodations and healthcare.

Financial and Economic Brief - January 9, 2018

• Service Sector Growth Slows - Growth in non-manufacturing economic activity continued to fall in December, after dropping more than expected in November.

• GoPro Cutting 20% of Staff - GoPro is shutting down its drone business and cutting 20% of its staff after “weak demand” for its products.

• S&P, Dow Trade Lower on Monday - The S&P 500 and the Dow were trading lower on Monday, as losses in healthcare and financial stocks hindered Wall Street’s strongest start to a year in a decade.