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February 2015 Archives

An overview of charitable trusts for Washington, DC, residents

A Washington, DC, resident may have a cause that is close to his or her heart, and he or she may want to give a portion of his or her estate to a charity that champions that cause. Of course, it is possible to donate directly to the charity, but in some cases, it may make more sense to establish a charitable trust. Charitable trusts can be set up in a number of ways to benefit its creator, his or her heirs and the organization.

How gift and estate tax exemptions work in estate planning

One of the biggest drains on any estate is taxes. Estate planning can substantially reduce -- or even eliminate -- the taxes that would otherwise be owed on a person's estate upon death. Making use of federal gift and estate tax exemptions is an integral part of a successful estate plan for wealthy Washington, DC, residents.

Robin Williams' family shows that trusts require specificity

By now, many District of Columbia residents know that prior to his death, Robin Williams drafted his estate plan in order to provide for his current wife and children. His painstaking effort when setting up trusts, however, failed to keep his family out of court. His widow is claiming that provisions of the children's trusts lack specificity. She says that she is asking the court for clarification.

Use estate planning to pass on the family business

Business owners in Washington, DC often want to pass on their businesses to family when they pass away. Estate planning can help accomplish that while preserving as many business assets as possible and help ensure a smooth transition. Otherwise, creditors and taxing authorities may end up with a significant portion of those assets, and the company's operations could be interrupted and cause further losses.

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