Estate Planning

Why do you need an estate plan? Because having no plan is a plan albeit a poor one. Procrastinating is very common when it comes to estate planning. We associate estate planning with death and we all what to put that subject off as long as possible. But estate planning is not for the dead, it is for the living. Once you are dead, how you planned your estate will be of little concern to you.

It is also hard because the first step in estate planning is very personal. You must decide who inherits which assets and when they should receive them.

How the Bypass Trust Works

The decedent provides for a portion of his or her estate to be placed in an irrevocable bypass trust, equal to the applicable exclusion amount for the year of death. The exclusion amount is a personal exemptions each person has from death (estate) taxes and is called tje "Unified Credit". The remainder of the estate is given outright to the surviving spouse or placed in a revocable martial (or survivor's) trust. Income from the bypass trust can be paid to the spouse during his or her lifetime. At the surviving spouse's death, the children receive the property from both trusts, but the property in the bypass trust is not included in the surviving spouse's gross estate for death tax purposes. With this common structure, a married couple can pass on to their children assets up to an amount twice the Unifed Credit tax free. 


Famous People Who Died without Adequate Estate Planning

  Walt Disney Marilyn Monore Elvis Presley J.P. Morgan J.D. Rockefeller
Gross Estate $23,004,851 $819,176 $10,165,434 $17,121,482 $26,905,182
Settlement Costs 6,811,943 448,750 7,374,635 11,893,691 17,124,988
Net Estate $16,192,908 $370,426 $2,790,799 $5,227,791 $16,192,908
Shrinkage 30% 55% 73% 69% 64%

Trust and Estate Administration

Golden Gate Advisors, Inc. acts in a fiduciary capacity assisting trustees, beneficiaries and legal counsel with the day to day duties required to effectively administer a trust or estate. Our experience in estate planning, investment management, and real estate provides the professional expertise grantors and trustees can rely upon.


Out of State Vacation Property ?

Consider putting any vacation property in another state in a revocable living trust, so that your estate won't end up going through probate in two different states. (Check with your attorney to make sure this is a good idea under the law of your state.)