At the time of this writing, President Trump’s proposed tax plan is still uncertain. Along with tax reform, the proposal calls for a complete elimination of the estate tax in 2023 and an increased estate tax exclusion amount beginning January 1, 2018, through 2023. There is also a proposal to eliminate the generation-skipping transfer tax.
With so much uncertainty, people might decide to wait to see what changes will occur in the law before taking action. But if you take the “wait and see” approach your estate plan may not be effective to meet your goals when an accident or illness occurs. Regardless of what happens in the White House, having your wishes laid out in a valid trust is your best protection for your assets and your family.
Here are a few tips to ensure the health of your estate plan in 2018:
Is the person you named as agent on your financial power of attorney and health care power of attorney still the person who will best carry out your wishes when you are still living but unable to make decisions for yourself?
Is the person you named as trustee of your trust and executor of your will still the person you trust to wrap up your affairs when you pass away?
If your children are under the age of 18, have you named a guardian who will give them love and stability?
Is your schedule of trust assets current to reflect the real estate and bank and investment accounts you own right now?
Are the persons you want to receive your estate when you pass away properly listed as your beneficiaries?
If you answered No to any of these questions or if you have other concerns about assets or family members, you should meet with your estate planning attorney. Keeping your estate plan healthy and current to reflect your wishes is just as important as your physical health. Adding updating your estate plan to your 2018 to do list will give you peace of mind.
On the topic of physical health, I keep in shape by running. Did you know we have a free run club in San Clemente? Talega Run Club meets every Saturday morning at 7:30 a.m. at Peet’s Coffee for a 3-4 mile run. We also meet every Thursday night at the Outlets at the 2XU store at 6 p.m. for a 5-mile route on our beautiful beach trail to the pier and back. Join us anytime! Whether you call me for an estate plan update or you join me at Run Club, I wish you all my best for a Healthy 2018!