Estate Planning and Wealth Protection
- 02/02/12 Poisonous Estate Planning A New York State court recently held a widow and her two friends liable in connection with the production of a "sham" Will for the widow's deceased husband and its admission to probate. The court's decision illustrates a terrible family tragedy and the grave consequences of failing to follow the law in this area and doing "favors" for friends or family.
- 09/30/11 Love, Taxes & Equality? On June 24, 2011, New York Governor Andrew Cuomo signed the Marriage Equality Act (the "Act"), thereby granting same-sex couples the right to marry in New York.
- 06/01/11 Three Steps to Understanding Estate Tax Relief A recent change in the law governing gift and estate taxes gives many people the opportunity to shift wealth to their descendants on a tax-efficient basis. But you have to act fast.
- 06/01/11 Keep Your Nest Egg Golden A taxpayer is eligible for the exclusion if: (i) the taxpayer is 62 years of age or older during any part of the taxable year; or (ii) the taxpayer is permanently and totally disabled. Permanent and total disability is defined as a medically demonstrable disability that is permanent and that renders the taxpayer incapable of performing any gainful occupation within the taxpayer's competence.
- 12/15/09 TRUST BENEFICIARIES AND TRUSTEES In our practice we continue to observe the proliferation of fiduciary litigation and, in particular, the growth of lawsuits against trustees. We receive many calls from beneficiaries claiming to be harmed by their trustee's management, vexatious conduct or investment decisions.
- 08/01/08 Big Hearts, Big Home John and Jeanette Murphy, of Morrow, Ga., have adopted 23 "special needs" children over the years, 17 of whom still reside with them. These children, currently ranging in age from 6 to 39, are challenged by conditions such as Down syndrome, cerebral palsy, mental retardation, brain damage and heart defects.
- 09/01/05 OWER OVER YOUR FATE Most of us will not soon forget this spring's nightly news stories of Terri Schiavo and the very public battle to determine her fate. Hearing about her case made many of us pause to consider, "Could the same thing happen to one of my loved ones or me?"
- 06/01/04 Securing Your Family’s Future: Perspectives on Estate Planning Perhaps the most frequently asked question of Smith, Gambrell & Russell, LLP's Estate Planning and Wealth Protection Group is -- "Will the federal estate, gift and generation-skipping taxes be repealed during my lifetime?" Our short answer is -- "Don't count on it. Permanent repeal is highly unlikely."
- 06/01/03 SPLIT-DOLLAR LIFE INSURANCE: Is There A Future? During the last four decades, a popular way to purchase permanent life insurance has been through so-called "split-dollar" life insurance arrangements, where two or more parties share the costs and benefits of the life insurance policy. Favorable tax treatment has been a major reason for the popularity of these arrangements.
- 12/01/02 Special Needs Trusts Planning for the disabled population is an emerging legal specialty bringing new hope to the physically and mentally challenged.