Archive | Estate & Gift Tax

Estate Planning Update: IRS Announces 2015 Gift Exclusion Amounts

Estate Planning Update:

Just a quick update that IRS recently announced new gift & estate tax exclusion amounts for 2015, plus a whole bunch of tips for how to approach gifting over the year end and

2015 Annual Exclusion Amount To Remain At $14,000

The annual exclusion is the amount you may give to any individual (and some trusts) without incurring gift tax. This amount renews every year, and can be doubled if spouses elect to “split” gifts. So, for example, you and your spouse could give a total of $56,000 – gift tax free – to your child and her spouse, because each of you can give $14,000 to each of them (you give $14,000 to child and $14,000 to child’s spouse, and your spouse gives the same amounts to them: $14K X 4 = $56K). Note that you do not need to write 4 checks. You and your spouse can each write $28,000 checks and then elect to split gifts on your 2014 gift tax return.

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The Art of Estate Planning: Protecting the Art Collection

Estate Planning for Art

Estate Planning for Art – Picasso

The world of art is a beautiful and mysterious place, however navigating that world takes a lot more than simple good taste. Most of us buy what we like on a piece-by-piece basis, but what makes someone a collector is the talent he or she demonstrates in selecting and grouping their art. This process takes almost as much creativity as the art itself, and requires just as much attention.

From a trust and estate planning point of view, a quality art collection becomes greater than the sum of its parts, and can ultimately set the trend for future generations of art collectors. An admired collection may become much more than a personal passion – it can ultimately be an important part of a family’s legacy with all the pleasures and pains included.

One example we like at Oakstone Law is the Elkins family and the recent federal Fifth Circuit Court of Appeals case of Estate of Elkins v. Commissioner. If you are an art lover or know someone who is, pay close attention to how this unfolds:

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Naples, Florida 34109
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