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Lancaster PA Probate and Estate Administration Law Blog

Estate Planning and Portability

The American Taxpayer Relief Act of 2012 (ATRA), which tried to keep us from going over the "fiscal cliff," raised the federal estate tax exemption to $5.25 million and made permanent an estate tax concept called "portability." How long the exemption will stay at $5.25 million (ignoring annual inflation adjustments) is anybody's guess.

"Portable" means easily carried or transferred, like a portable typewriter (remember those?). In this case, "portable" means easily transferred to a surviving spouse.

Seminar: How to Prepare Fiduciary Accounts and Avoid Common Traps

Don't miss the PBI seminar on How to Prepare Fiduciary Accounts and Avoid Common Traps next Thursday May 1, 2014 at the CLE Conference Center, Wanamaker Building, Philadelphia. Register here: http://www.legalspan.com/pbi/catalog.asp?UGUID&CategoryID=20020903110249133627&ItemID=20131209-229194-103056

Inheritance tax: Exemptions for Farms and Small Businesses: Fourth and Last in a Series

Effective for decedents dying after July 9, 2013, there is a new inheritance tax exemption for qualified family-owned businesses. The law provides: "A transfer of a qualified family-owned business interest to one or more transferees is exempt from inheritance tax, if the qualified family-owned business interest . . . .continues to be owned by a qualified transferee for a minimum of seven years after the decedent's date of death."

Inheritance tax: Life estates, elections, exemptions and the early payment discount

Part III of this series on the Pennsylvania inheritance tax deals with the taxation of future interests, the sole use trust election, the family exemption and the early payment discount.

Do You Claim You are Domiciled in Florida? How to Change Domicile

It's time for the snow birds to think about their migration to Florida and other parts south. Man folks make a great deal out of staying for exactly 6 months and a day. They think that being in a state for more than half the year makes them domiciled in the state. Maybe yes, but maybe no. It depends.

The Importance of Beneficiary Designations

Life insurance and retirement plans compose the largest part of the estate for many people. Insurance death benefits, IRAs, Annuities, and 401(k)s do not pass under your will. They pass under contract law to those persons or organizations who are designated as the beneficiary.

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