Estate & Trust Planning
Protecting Your Legacy for Future Generations
A sound estate plan will assist you in creating, using, preserving, and protecting your wealth. Effective estate and trust planning facilitates the orderly transfer of assets to your beneficiaries, provides financial security for your loved ones, and can reduce or eliminate the tax due on the transfer of your business and other assets. For business owners, providing for business continuity and succession of ownership is essential. We can help assist and guide you through the complex process of getting your financial affairs in order. By working in partnership, we help you coordinate a sound estate and trust plan for business continuation, wealth protection, and minimization of estate taxes.
Good estate planning is more than just drafting a will - it also includes developing a comprehensive plan to protect, grow, and preserve wealth and assets for both your own retirement and for future generations. Our estate planning practice provides a wide range of services from compliance and sophisticated estate planning for the closely-held business to business succession planning for the family run enterprise. Our firm has a long tradition of providing in-depth wealth transfer planning for our clients, as well as a full range of estate and trust administrative services, such as analysis and application of complex estate, inheritance and fiduciary income tax issues. We address those pressing needs of our clients by helping to develop and implement a plan that enables them to achieve their financial goals.
- Gift Planning
- Business Succession Planning
- Charitable Trusts and Gift Planning
- Estate Accounting, Reporting and Administration
- Family Limited Partnership and Limited Liability Company Tax Returns and Consulting
- Fiduciary Accounting under the Principal and Income Act for Trusts
- Fiduciary Income Tax Returns
- Irrevocable Life Insurance Trusts
- Plan Analysis and Updates
- Post-Mortem Estate Planning
- Preparation of Various Estate Tax Returns
- Private Foundation Compliance Administration and Tax Returns
- Private Foundation Reporting
- Probate Court-Approved Accounting for Estates and Conservatorships
- Retirement Planning, including Roth Conversion Analysis
- Reviewing Wills, Trusts Instruments and Schedules of Assets
- Trust Income Tax Return Preparation
- U.S. Gift Tax Return Preparation
Wealth Transfer Planning
Our goal is to fashion a comprehensive and tax-efficient plan based on your asset mix, business and family considerations. We regularly advise our clients about the relative advantages of various planning alternatives, including the use of revocable or living trusts, life insurance and pension plan strategies, structured charitable giving techniques, optimal use of the estate tax-exemption amount, and lifetime gifting opportunities.
Post Mortem Tax Planning
Even though death and taxes may be inevitable, there are ways to minimize tax liability. Also, techniques such as disclaimers, timing of distributions, tax year elections, etc. are often applicable. Careful allocation of assets to different trusts can also reduce the tax burden on beneficiaries.
Business Succession Planning
One of the hardest things for a business owner to recognize is that someday someone else will make the decisions they make today. Transferring business leadership to the next generation is a process, not an event. We assist business owners and their families in planning for this transition by structuring a plan suited to their individual needs.
We leverage the services of our valuation professionals to prepare business valuations. Whether for estate or gift tax purposes, buy-sell agreements or divestiture, we work closely with our valuations professionals to prepare valuations in a context suited to the unique needs of the particular situation.