Winter Haven and Lakeland residents have probably heard of the major federal tax reform legislation enacted late last year. The law includes not only an overhaul of the federal income tax system but also the federal gift and estate tax system as well. This change has big implications for the estate planning of many Floridians. This blog post will provide some basic information about the changes made to the federal tax code and other changes for 2018.
Each year many Florida residents are involved in health crises that place their capacity to make decisions about their care in jeopardy. Whether they are incapacitated through accidents or illnesses, people who lose their ability to make informed decisions about management of their own health can be left at the mercy of medical professionals and their family members to act in accordance with the wishes the individuals are believed to hold.
In the minds of many Polk County, Florida, residents, the topic of estate planning brings to mind the task of distributing assets after one's death. This is indeed a very important part of estate planning, but it is not the only part.
With the Thanksgiving holiday here, the end of the year is just around the corner. Besides shopping for holiday gifts, there are other end of the year activities a person in Lakeland may want to accomplish. The end of the year is a good time to revisit an estate plan and make sure it is still in good shape.
A Florida attorney can provide beneficial advice on estate planning. Hugh Hefner, with the assistance of his lawyers, provides an example of sound planning. Its strengths are impressive given Hefner's divorces and the economic and readership decline of Playboy magazine.
All competent adults have the right to make decisions regarding their health. But, a problem can arise if an adult loses the ability to make these decisions. When this happens, how can someone communicate their health wishes to loved ones and health care providers?
Effective estate planning can provide peace of mind and avoid family conflicts. The right estate planning documents and having an effective estate plan protects the estate planner, the estate planner's family and the estate planner's assets so it is important to be familiar with what estate planning documents are needed. The appropriate estate planning documents can also reduce stress and strife for families during difficult times.
Florida estate planning should include care of an important family member. Will or trusts may address the testator's wishes for the family pet. Trusted caregivers who are familiar with the pets should be identified in the will. The executor usually has the power to select another caregiver if something happens to the primary caregiver.
A family may gain a vast wealth of assets and financial holdings over years or even decades of hard work. Wealth could have even started with a person's parents who have since passed away, as wealth tends to gain speed as time goes on. Or rather, wealth can gain speed as time goes on. If you are concerned that your estate could be handled improperly both now or in the future, you may consider an estate plan.
When you consider the idea of bequeathing property in the event of your death, you may think about donating some of your accumulated assets to charity. Luckily, you have estate planning options that can help you carry out this goal, such as by using a charitable trust. Depending on how you want the assets distributed, you may consider using a charitable remainder trust or a charitable lead trust.