How Do I Know If I Need Estate Planning?

We feel everyone needs estate planning. No matter how much money you have, it is still your estate and steps should be taken to make sure it goes where you want it to go. So often we hear the family afterwards explain how things did not go as hoped for and wished there would have been an estate plan in place.

What Is The Current Federal Estate Tax Limits?

The amount of an estate you may leave your loved ones without an estate tax is over 11 million dollars. Quite high. Arizona does not have a death, estate or gift tax.

If I Am Married, Is The Amount That My Spouse And I Can Pass Tax-Free Automatically Doubled?

Yes, the total amount a married couple can leave to their heirs at the last death is double the exemption amount, over 22 Million dollars, IF, and this is a big if, proper steps are made both in your estate plan and by the surviving spouse soon after the first one dies. It is not automatically doubled.

If My Estate Is Under A Certain Amount, Do I Have To Worry About Estate Taxes?

No, see response above.

Does Your State Have An Estate Tax?

Arizona does not. If you have property in other states, there may be a death or state estate tax. Seek the advice of appropriate tax and legal counsel in any other state you have property or live.

Can I Avoid Estate Taxes By Giving Away My Assets Now?

The estate tax limit is the same amount as the gift tax limit. For most estates, there is no longer a difference between inheriting or receiving assets as a gift. However, giving away assets tends to be a mistake for many reasons, unless specifically directed otherwise by qualified legal advisers.

Can The Life Insurance Be Used To Pay Estate Taxes?

Yes, this was a very common estate planning tool. Life insurance inside an irrevocable trust both paid and provided liquidity for estate tax purposes. Since the estate tax limits have gone up significantly, this is used less than in prior years.

For more information on Estate Planning Needs In Arizona, an initial consultation is your next best step. Get the information and legal answers you are seeking by calling (480) 345-0444 today.