trusts & estates
probate
special needs planning

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Large Estates

Large Estates

High net worth individuals have a variety of objectives when it comes to planning their estates. To be sure, avoiding unnecessary taxes tops the list. But also important are the goals of leaving a protected legacy and communicating key values to subsequent generations.

Whenever we establish an estate plan for a high net worth client, we always start with one of our custom-built living trusts. Our living trusts can save a married couple up to $1,575,000 in estate taxes (in 2009) and can even protect our clients’ heirs from losing their inheritance due to lawsuits, divorce, and double estate taxes. (To find out more about this foundational planning, click here.)

But for many of our high net worth clients, a superior living trust is just the beginning. When we plan for individuals who expect to die with more than $3,500,000 and couples who expect to die with more than $7,000,000 in assets, we employ a variety of advanced techniques depending on the applicable facts and circumstances:

  • Lifetime gifting to take advantage of the annual gift-tax exclusion ($13,000 per beneficiary in 2009)
  • Family Limited Partnerships and Family Limited Liability Companies
  • Irrevocable Life Insurance Trusts
  • Charitable Remainder Trusts, Charitable Lead Trusts and Family Foundations
  • Domestic Asset Protection Trusts
  • Qualified Personal Residence Trusts
Large Estates

Our advanced planning process has three phases: design, implementation, and maintenance.

The Design Phase: We spend significant time getting to know you, your values, and your priorities during your advanced plan’s design phase. Once we establish a preliminary outline, we give you time to review and tweak it all with our available guidance, of course. The design phase concludes once your advanced plan has been refined to your satisfaction.

The Implementation Phase: That’s when the implementation phase commences. Throughout the implementation process, we take the time to educate you and your family about the operation of your plan -- so you maximize enjoyment of its benefits. When this phase is complete, you will have executed the necessary legal documents to protect yourself and those you love.

The Maintenance Phase: When the implementation phase has concluded, we will customize a maintenance program for you. That enables us to make sure your advanced plan works over time and sets expectations about any ongoing costs.

An advanced estate plan is how a high net worth client leaves a tax-advantaged, growing, and protected legacy over multiple generations. The cost of an advanced plan is usually a very small fraction of the financial benefits to the family. To learn more, please call us at 916.273.9040 or
click here to request a consultation.

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