What you value may be more important than what you own.
To follow through on your commitments, to yourself, your family, and your ideals -- you need to think ahead.
A well-constructed strategy can help address your specific estate planning needs including:
Minimizing income and estate taxes
Transferring wealth from one generation to the next
Developing charitable gifting strategies
Aligning existing portfolios and retirement accounts with your estate plan
The amount you will need in retirement depends on the age you plan to retire, your desired retirement lifestyle, how long you expect to live and the rate of return that you expect to earn on your investments. Social Security and employer-sponsored pension plans will probably provide less of what you will need than they did for your parents.
Consideration should be given to one or more of the following strategies when trying to maximize your retirement income:
Clearly prioritized retirement goals and objectives
Retirement at a later age
Spending less during retirement
Invest to earn a potentially higher rate of return on investments while still feeling comfortable with the level of risk involved
Liquidation of non-cash assets
Maximize contributions to qualified retirement plans
Invest in IRA
Gifting strategies may be used as a means of distributing your estate and effectively reducing estate taxes upon death. Most taxpayers can accomplish significant estate planning objectives simply by taking advantage of lifetime giving which includes making maximum use of the annual exclusion, lifetime use of the applicable exclusion amount and lifetime taxable gifts.Considerations should be given to one or more of the following strategies when trying to minimize estate taxes and maximize the net distributions from your estate to family, friends and charities:
Grantor Retained Trusts - allows you to remove appreciating property from your estate thus reducing estate taxes. Once the property is transferred to the trust, the grantor (donor) retains interest in the property for the term specified. The grantor receives payments based on the value of the assets in the trust. The property, including any appreciation in value, passes to the beneficiaries without further gift or estate tax consequences.
Charitable Remainder Trusts - allows you to donate property and assets to a trust and reserve an income stream in the trust for a specified period. The trust provides an income to you or any designated non-charitable beneficiaries with the remainder interest being transferred to a qualified charity at the end of the term.
Charitable Lead Trusts - allows you to designate charities to receive an income stream during term of the trust. At the end of the term, the ultimate beneficiaries are your heirs.
Education planning for your children can be a major financial consideration. Planning early allows you to take advantage of the time value of money and help minimize the savings requirement.
Consideration should be given to one or more of the following strategies when trying to maximize your college planning:
Prioritize your education objective with your insurance needs, retirement needs, major purchases and current income needs
Develop an effective savings strategy that considers asset allocation and takes advantage of education plans
Consider the various education funding accounts -- Qualified State Tuition Plans (also known as 529 Plans#), Uniform Transfer to Minor Accounts (UTMA) / Uniform Gifts to Minor Accounts (UGMA), Coverdell Educational savings accounts and prepaid tuition plans
Ensure college expenses are properly planned -- include tuition, room and board and living expenses. Factor in an inflation rate for the rising cost of tuition. Should you consider planning for post-graduate studies? Do you expect your child/children to receive scholarships or financial aid?
#Securities offered through NYLIFE Securities LLC. (member FINRA/SIPC).
A sound financial plan must address the insurance coverages you, your spouse and family members may require.
Life insurance is used to pay for funeral expenses, repay outstanding debts, make charitable donations and provide living expenses for surviving family members. It can also be used to cover estate taxes and probate fees to enable your estate to be liquidated in the most appropriate manner.
Disability income insurance is to help partially replace income of persons who are unable to work because of sickness or accident. In terms of its financial effect on the family, long-term disability can be just as severe as death. Disability income protection can come from several sources: social insurance programs, employer-provided benefits, and individually purchased policies.