The People in Your Life Matter
It’s essential to work out who your beneficiaries will be and see what options are available for them.
A beneficiary is someone who inherits your assets from you. It would be best if you decided who should get your assets.
Look at the following when you do your estate planning:
- Reduce taxes where you can.
- Make sure your spouse or partner or beneficiaries are looked after.
- Donate to your favourite charity.
- Make sure your affairs are well looked after in the event of you becoming ill.
Speak to a financial advisor or your attorney or a tax advisor when doing estate planning.
Gifts Are an Option
Here are some options to look at:
- The annual gift tax exemption will help you reduce the size of your estate and thereby reduce your inheritance tax.¹
- Look at paying educational and medical expenses for family members. If you pay the institution directly, you avoid the gift tax.²
- Invest in a grandchild’s retirement future. Speak to a financial advisor for independent advice on the various options available to you.
What are some of the problems with a typical estate plan?
- Estate taxes can be as high as 55%
- The probate process is long, expensive, and often fraught with problems
- Succession to assets might take a very long time if the deceased died without an estate plan or succession documents in place
How much do these strategies cost, and where can I find more information about them?
The cost of these strategies varies and will depend on the complexity of your estate. Generally, they cost less than $1000 to implement and often much lower depending on the complexity of your estate.
What are the important estate planning factors?
- What kinds of assets are you planning to leave behind?
- How much money will your heirs need after death?
- Are there any particular goals for the estate, such as reducing taxes or avoiding probate costs?
How do you distribute the estate to beneficiaries?
To distribute an estate to beneficiaries, an executor will need to:
- Set up a trust
- Document the distribution of assets
- Pay any debts and expenses when necessary.
Putting strategies in place to work out how best to distribute your estate is something important we all have to do. It’s essential to look at your financial affairs and carefully plan out how you want your assets to be distributed when you die. Estate planning can help you to look at the options available to you to make sure your beneficiaries will be looked after when you are deceased.