How To Limit An Executor’s Personal Liability For A Decedent’s Unpaid Taxes

Being an executor can often be a demanding and thankless task. In addition to coping with the loss of a close friend or family member, executors are routinely charged with navigating estate plans through an unfamiliar and intimidating course of

5 Estate Planning Tips to Avoid Disputes

Insert a no-contest clause When a will contest seems likely, an in terrorem clause may be beneficial. An in terrorem clause, also known as a “no-contest” clause, generally provides that a bequest will fail if the beneficiary initiates or participates

Mobility of Estate Plan Documents

Many clients ask if they must re-do their estate plan when they move to a different state.  The answer is generally “no”.  A Will made in New Jersey or New York or Florida is likely going to be “valid” in

Short Lived Planning Opportunities for the Rest of 2012

The current gift tax exclusion is scheduled to expire at midnight on December 31, 2012, bringing to an end the highest exemptions ever seen. Under current law for 2012, each person has the ability to gift or dispose of assets

A limited opportunity for generous gift tax exclusions

The 2010 Tax Act is scheduled to expire on Dec. 31, 2012, at which time under current law the opportunities afforded under the 2010 Act will be lost. This article explores various tax planning opportunities created under the 2010 Act.

Six Estate Planning Myths

The most time-consuming aspect of estate planning is educating clients and dispelling common misconceptions that most people have regarding Wills, Trusts, Estate Taxes and Probate. Over the years, we have identified six recurring misconceptions which many of our clients carry

Estate Planning For Women

Estate planning affects women more profoundly, so they should take charge of this process, or at least be equal participants. Among Americans 65 and older, 42% of women, but just 14% of men, are widowed. Women’s longer life expectancy, combined with  their tendency

Estate Planning in the Electronic Age

With the ever-growing  presence of online and electronic documents, records and accounts, it is becoming  essential to keep track of your passwords.   Consumers have had access to military grade cryptography for decades,  and while it offers an amazing level of

Charitable Remainder Trust: Frequently Asked Questions

1. What is a Charitable Remainder Trust? A Charitable Remainder Trust is a special tax-exempt irrevocable trust arrangement written to comply with federal tax laws and regulations. You transfer cash or assets (especially appreciated assets) to the trust and may

New Tax Law Makes Significant Estate Tax Changes

On December 17, 2010 President Obama signed into law the “Tax Relief, Unemployment Insurance Reauthorization and Job Creation Act of 2010.” The new law: • Extends for two years the current income tax rates and other income tax rates commonly

Probate of Estates in New Jersey

Estate administration in New Jersey is the process by which a deceased person’s property, known as the ‘estate,’ is passed to his or her heirs and legatees (people named in the will). Estate administration encompasses all assets of the decedent

How to Limit a Executor’s Personal Liability for Taxes

There are three risk-management tools every probate lawyer needs to know...

Frequently Asked Probate Questions

1) How do I begin the probate procedure? The person that wishes to be appointed to represent the Estate will bring a certified copy of the death certificate and the original Will. The probate cannot be completed until 10 days

Estate Planning for Non-Traditional Families

Estate planning for traditional couples usually consists of having a Will, Financial Power of Attorney, Medical Power of Attorney and Advanced Health Care Directive. There are typically three types of couples that need planning significantly different from that of traditional

Still Beware of State Death Taxes…

Despite the new and generous federal estate tax exemption of $5 million per estate and $10 million per couple, many less wealthy families still have to plan for estate taxes–state estate taxes that is. The $10 million exemption makes state

Adding Beneficiaries to an Irrevocable Life Insurance Trust

If the owner and beneficiary of the a life insurance policy is an irrevocable life insurance trust (“ILIT”), the proceeds from the life insurance policy would not be included in her estate and could be used to completely provide funds

Beware PODs and TODs

Virtually any bank or brokerage account can provide that it is paid on death (“POD”) or transferred on death (“TOD”) to named beneficiaries. And IRAs, 401Ks, pension plans and insurance policies are typically made payable to designated beneficiaries. Nevertheless, these

Introduction to Estate Planning

Estate planning is concerned with the use, conservation and disposition of a person’s property and wealth. This involves two elements: (1) minimizing the gift or estate tax consequences that occur when a person’s property is passed to another either during

Where Not To Die

New Jersey and Maryland levy both types of tax.

Estate Tax Revisit

There are many other viable estate-planning tools and techniques that should be discussed with your tax adviser, but the key is to plan ahead.

Ten Things to Do to Prepare a Will for Probate

If you are the executor of a will there are many things you must do to get that will ready for probate. Probate means the process by which the deceased’s assets are gathered; outstanding debts, taxes, and expenses of the

Probate Basics

The legal process of transferring of property upon a person’s death is known as “probate.” Although probate customs and laws have changed over time, the purpose has remained much the same: people formalize their intentions as to the transfer of


Probate is the process whereby a Will is proved to be valid by a Surrogate, who has the authority to determine the authenticity of such a document. It also involves appointing an individual for an Estate when someone dies without

Naming Your Executor

You should name an executor in your will. In order to decide who is best to carry out this position, you need to know what responsibilities the position has. The executor’s job is to start the probate process with the

Administrator of a Probate Estate: Duties and Responsibilities

The procedures in an estate administration may take from six months to several years, and a client’s patience may be sorely tried during this time. However, it has been our experience that clients who are forewarned have a much higher

Mediating Probate Disputes

A lawyer involved in a probate dispute must be able to advise his or her client both about the client’s legal rights and remedies and about the client’s options for resolving the dispute. If the lawyer advises the client only

Sale of Real Property from an Estate

There are some special issues to consider when the seller of real estate is the estate of a decedent. Real estate held by a decedent’s estate is subject to liens for the payment of any New Jersey Transfer Inheritance Tax,


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