The Building Blocks

Brody, Lawrence
October 1995
Journal of Financial Planning;Oct95, Vol. 8 Issue 4, p153
Academic Journal
This article focuses on techniques of estate planning that are considered as building blocks of any sophisticated estate plan. Estate planning for clients has become increasingly complex-think of the "alphabet soup" of techniques like: FLPs, QPRTs, GRITs, GRATs, GRUTs, CRUTs, CRATs, CLUB, CLATs, and so on. They should either be considered and actively rejected, or considered and used before employing more advanced strategies. Practitioners should consider annual gifting programs to family members, either outright or in trust. Any such gifting program also should fully use the unlimited annual gift-tax exclusions for the direct payment of educational and medical expenses of the donees; the oldest, wealthiest family member(s) should directly pay all tuition and medical expenses, including medical insurance premiums. Grandchildren or other lower-generation beneficiaries should be included in any annual gifting program, whether outright or in trust, to move the gifted property as far down the donor's family as is possible without transfer-tax consequences.


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