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Barron’s on Why You Should Gift Now

Great article from Barron's explaining the lifetime bypass trust and how couples can gift over $10,000,000 to each other (although most gift much less) and avoid estate tax if they act by December 31. For married couples, a popular strategy is for each spouse to create a trust that will ultimately provide for heirs, but that also names the other spouse as a beneficiary. The advantages are clear: Couples can move as…

Accountant’s Perspective on Gift Tax

Year end estate planning guide from Accounting Today. Current estate planning rules are advantageous to protecting assets and transferring wealth with less tax. In fact, 2012 has been labeled the year of the gift tax, partly because you can gift up to $5,120,000 tax-free this year, and the estate tax exemption is also the same amount. Those exemptions will decrease to $1 million each next year, and this year’s estate tax rate of…

Real Entrepreneurs – No VCs Needed

Great post from David Katz about what a real entrepreneur is and what it is not. After describing the glorified gamblers and their venture capitalist enablers, he says: This whole picture of entrepreneurship reeks. It’s only true for a small subset of entrepreneurs - ones that make high risk plays with VC capital and years without profitability. Founders who make these plays are really half entrepreneurs, half gamblers. If you build your life…

How the Lifetime Bypass Trust Works: Attention CPAs

Many of my clients are interested in the Lifetime Bypass Trust. And some are vetting the concept through their CPAs. Here is an email (with the names removed) I have sent to several CPAs to clarify this amazing but simple planning strategy. The structure we are proposing is a lifetime bypass trust. The concept is the same as used with an A/B trust, or bypass trust. When a bypass trust is created…

Lifetime Bypass Trust

Until December 31, the lifetime gift tax exclusion is $5,120,000 per person. Unless Congress acts, this amount will drop to $1,000,000 on January 1, 2013.  It is usually best to use a tax exemption as soon as possible – use it or lose it. The opportunity, good now through the December 31, is to gift assets out of your estate and forever exempt the assets and all future appreciation from estate tax.…

Act by Dec. 31 to Avoid Estate Tax (click for slide show)

We now know the next President and the composition of Congress. Most likely, the historic estate and gift tax exclusions that end on December 31, 2012, will never be seen again. This may be the best opportunity in your lifetime to remove assets from your estate and forever avoid estate tax. Watch the slide show below to learn more about what you can do in the remaining days of this year to…

Sell Now – Capital Gains Tax Goes Up in 2013

From the Tax Prof Blog citing the WSJ. George Lucas isn't alone. Business owners race to their sell businesses in 2012 to avoid higher capital gains tax in 2013. Wall Street Journal:  Looming Tax Hike Motivates Owners to Sell, by John D. McKinnon: A looming increase in the capital-gains tax rate next year is fueling sales of some privately-held businesses. Many business owners—mostly founders who could gain a lot from a sale—are looking to close…

Annual Gift Tax Exclusion Up to $14k in 2013

The IRS will increase the annual gift tax exclusion from $13k to $14K in 2013. The annual gift tax exclusion is the amount you and your spouse can each gift to anyone without dipping into your lifetime gift tax exclusion (the lifetime gift tax exclusion is currently $5,120,000 and scheduled to drop to $1M in 2013).  From Forbes: There is one change taking effect in January 2013 that’s new: the annual gift…

Gift Now and Avoid Estate Tax

If you have a net worth of $1M or more (or as a couple, $2M or more), and act now, you could forever remove the threat of estate tax. But if you don’t act by the end of the year, you will miss a historic opportunity. The 2012 estate tax exclusion and gift tax exclusion are both $5,120,000 - way higher than they have ever been. But unless Congress and the President…

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