Estate Planning Uncertainty in an Election Year

Tax laws have a direct and significant effect on your estate plan. During an election year, such as this year, the fate of lots of tax laws is often unsure. Setting up an evaluation of your current estate plan with your estate planning lawyer is an excellent way to make sure that your plan takes benefit of the present tax laws and anticipates any scheduled changes.

A change in administration might result in a change in philosophy with regard to tax laws. As the tax laws presently stand, there are a number of them that are set to end or alter for 2013 consisting of the following:
Investments: The maximum rate for long-term capital gains might rise to 20% from 15% unless Congress acts prior to completion of the year. Stock dividends, presently taxed at an optimum of 15%, will also be taxed as normal earnings, with a leading tax rate of 39.6%

Estate Tax Exemption: Currently at $5 million, the exemption is set up to drop back down to $1 million next year in 2013.
Gift Tax Exemption: Likewise presently at and all time high of $5 million and set to go back to $1 million in 2013.

Estate Tax and Gift Tax Rates: Currently set at a maximum of 35%, both will revert to a maximum rate of 55% on January 1, 2013 missing action by Congress.
Payroll Tax Cut: Adds about $40 to the typical worker’s take house pay. Congress extended the tax cut through 2012, however its future is uncertain.

Tax Rates: President Bush implemented a tax rate cut that is still in impact putting the rates at 10% – 35%. If they expire, specific tax rates will return to 15% – 39.6%.
Alternative Minimum Tax: The AMT was initially planned to avoid high income taxpayers from preventing taxes; however, it was not indexed for inflation, resulting in more taxpayers being needed to utilize the AMT throughout the years. A “spot” has been utilized by Congress each year to repair this, however the “patch” does not encompass 2012 at this time. As numerous as 31 million taxpayers are expected to be affected if another Spot is not forthcoming.

Tax Reductions and Credits: Various temporary deductions and credits have actually been adopted to help relieve the monetary stress of the economic crisis. There is no assurance that these will be extended.

Post Author: Laurie Roberts

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