Purchasing Real Estate in Florida: Will it Affect Your Estate Plan?

Buying real estate of any kind, in any location, requires due diligence and attention to details. Is the location right for you? Is the property being bought for personal use or to generate an income? Adding real property to your portfolio may increase the value of your portfolio. Increasing or decreasing the value of your assets can affect your estate plan in big ways. Effect on Value of Estate. Increasing your Read More

Steps for Establishing Florida Residency

Perhaps you spend six months in Connecticut and six months in Florida. You own property in both states, previously were considered a resident of Connecticut, but would like to make Florida your official state of residency. An individual can take a number of steps to establish Florida residency Is Dual Residency Possible? According to federal law, dual residency is not allowed. It’s necessary, then, to establish Read More

Should You Serve as Someone’s Power of Attorney?

Perhaps a family member or close friend has asked to name you to be their agent under a power of attorney. It sounds like an easy thing to do, but you’re not sure what your responsibilities would be. Before you say ‘yes,’ here are some things you should know about serving as someone’s agent under a power of attorney. A power of attorney enables one person (the “principal”) to name another person (the “agent”) to Read More

Understanding Dynasty Trusts

Establishing a dynasty trust has some major benefits for those seeking to protect generational wealth. One of the primary purposes of a dynasty trust is to shelter family assets from the effects of transfer taxes for generations. Here’s what you need to know about them. What are they? The purpose of the dynasty trust is similar to that of many other trusts,  namely to protect family wealth from creditors, Read More

3 Important Concepts of Florida Homestead and their Meanings

In Florida, you may be able to protect the value of your primary residence, including the building and the land, from creditors, and receive a discount on property taxes. If you meet the qualifications of homestead in Florida, you will want to make sure you take full advantage of all the benefits. Florida homestead laws are among the most favorable in the country for homeowners and can help save you and your family a Read More

What Wills Do Not Cover: Incapacity Planning

A will is an important part of an overall effective estate plan. Wills, however, do not become operative until death.  In other words, if the person signing the will becomes incapacitated, the will does not contain provisions that will help in dealing with this scenario.  Therefore, incapacity planning is an essential part of a comprehensive estate plan.   What is Incapacity Planning? Incapacity planning Read More

Does a Revocable Living Trust Really Protect the Settlor’s Assets? The Answer May Surprise You

When setting up a revocable trust, many people assume that one of the primary benefits to the trust is protection from creditor claims. While there are trusts that may be used to accomplish this goal, in Florida, a revocable trust does not provide protection to the trust settlor from creditors, Medicaid expenses, and more. (Contrastingly, significant asset protection can be provided to trust beneficiaries after the Read More

5 Essential Considerations for Business Succession Planning

Business owners, by the nature of their roles and responsibilities, have significant issues to consider when planning their estates.  Specifically, business succession planning is required for those who wish to sell or pass on their business upon retirement, or upon an untimely death, in a purposeful manner.  As with estate planning overall, business succession planning should be started as early as possible to Read More

High Net-Worth Estate Planning: 5 Potential Methods to Help Minimize Estate Tax Liability

When someone passes away, his or her estate may be obligated to pay federal estate tax before beneficiaries are able to receive their inheritances. There are exceptions to this type of tax; most middle class individuals are able to avoid it all together. For those with a high net-worth, however, it could result in a huge tax burden falling on loved ones. As of 2017, the estate tax exemption is at $5.49 million (up Read More

An Introduction to Florida Land Trusts

Florida Land Trusts are an excellent way to hold the title of many types of real estate, including business, rental, and even, in certain situations, personal real property. The trust becomes the legal owner of the property, and the trust is then ‘owned’ by the beneficiary or beneficiaries. This legal setup offers a variety of important advantages over simply owning property in the traditional fashion. A Trust Read More