Washington, DC residents may already know that when two American citizens are married, each spouse can gift as much in cash and other assets to the other as he or she would like, both in life and in death. This is due, at least in part, to the unlimited marital deduction provided under federal law. However, more complex estate planning is required to gift or will assets from an American citizen to a resident alien spouse.
A will may not be the first thing a young person thinks of when he or she reaches the age of majority. However, every Washington, DC, resident could benefit from even basic estate planning. Anyone with a car, a bank account or a home may consider developing an estate plan. Further, if an individual has a child or children, a will could become even more important.
When devising an estate plan, many different types of trusts can be used to achieve an individual's goals to provide for his or her family both before and after death. For a variety of reasons, many Washington, DC residents decide to keep the fact that they set up a trust for a beneficiary or beneficiaries quiet. However, keeping these so-called "silent trusts" quiet may not be easy.