Estate Planning Smarts

Table of Contents

Introduction x
Shape the Future With Your Estate Plan

Chapter 1

1
Nothing Lasts Forever
Read this chapter even if you are hearty and clear-headed.

Chapter 2

15
Who Gets What – and How Much Is Enough?
Read this chapter if you want to provide for specific people, charities or pets in your estate plan.

Chapter 3

37
Understand the Tax System
Read this chapter even if you think estate taxes won’t affect your heirs.

Chapter 4

55
Protect Your Spouse or Partner
Read this chapter if you are involved in any committed relationship.

Chapter 5

73
What if? Provide for Young or Disabled Children
Read this chapter so you can anticipate their needs and make sure they will be nurtured.

Chapter 6

89
Trusts: Not Just for the Wealthy
Read this chapter even if you think you don’t need this very useful tool.

Chapter 7

103
Preserve Retirement Accounts
Read this chapter if you have your own retirement account or have inherited one.

Chapter 8

123
Be Smart About Life Insurance
Read this chapter whether or not you have life insurance.

Chapter 9

135
Pay for Health Care and Education
Read this chapter if anyone you love could use help with these expenses, now or in the future.

Chapter 10

153
Home Base: Factoring in Real Estate
Read this chapter if you own your primary residence or vacation home or might move to a different state.

Chapter 11

171
Hidden Traps When Crossing Borders
Read this chapter if you or a family member is a citizen of another country, lives abroad or has foreign investments.

Chapter 12

185
The Family Business: a Legacy or a Headache?
Read this chapter if you have your own business or a share in a family-held enterprise.

Chapter 13

197
Subsidize Friends or Family
Read this chapter if you would like to offer financial help to adult children, grandchildren, parents, siblings or others.

Chapter 14

207
What You Can Do for Grandchildren
Read this chapter if you would like to provide a financial cushion for your descendants in the years ahead.

Chapter 15

223
Give Now, Save Tax Later
Read this chapter if saving taxes is a high priority.

Chapter 16

235
Make Lifetime Gifts Go Further
Read this chapter if you have the resources to transfer large sums of money while you are alive.

Chapter 17

247
Your Charitable Legacy
Read this chapter if there are causes you care deeply about and would like to benefit now or later.

Chapter 18

267
Create Roadblocks to Creditors
Read this chapter if you worry about being sued.

Chapter 19

279
Keep Your Plan Current
Read this chapter even if you think you can leave well enough alone.

Glossary

299

Resources and Further Reading

323
A selection of publications, software and Web sites that provide additional information.

Appendix

331
Internal Revenue Service life expectancy tables used to calculate
the minimum required distribution from an IRA.

Index

335

 

 

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