Jacksonville Estate Tax Protection Attorney
Why You Should Be Aware of Estate Taxes
As you reach retirement and the end of your life, you may begin to wonder what you will leave behind to your loved ones. A robust estate plan can help make sure your specific wishes are recognized, but the distribution of your assets is still subject to estate taxes.
If you contemplate how your estate’s assets will be distributed amongst your children and spouse, for example, it can be frustrating to consider that a sizable chunk of your wealth could be swallowed by estate taxes. An estate tax protection lawyer can help you prepare for these scenarios and minimize estate tax impact.
We at the Weldon Law Group, PLLC bring over 18 years of legal experience to our practice and are ready to help you protect your estate. We understand the complex intricacies of state and federal estate tax law and are committed to leveraging that knowledge to benefit our clients. If you are preparing for retirement and have questions about how you can best preserve your assets, call our Jacksonville estate tax protection lawyer at (904) 712-2556 or contact us online.
How Estate Taxes Work in Florida
Happily, Florida is one of several states that does not levy an estate tax. Many consider Florida to be an excellent location for retirement, in part because of this and other tax-friendly initiatives. For example, the state does not tax any of the following benefits:
- Social Security
- Other retirement income
This means simply establishing your primary residence in the state of Florida can go a long way in preserving your assets. However, Florida residents are still subject to federal estate taxes in addition to other potential tax liabilities.
Let an Experienced Jacksonville Estate Tax Protection Lawyer Help You
Your primary residence in the state of Florida will help you avoid a state estate tax and benefit your financial situation with other tax-friendly perks, but that does not mean you should avoid hiring an estate tax protection attorney to help protect your finances. We will draw upon our nearly 2 decades of experience to help determine the right course of action for your financial situation.
How Federal Estate Taxes Impact Florida
Even though Floridians are not subject to a state-specific estate tax, they are still beholden to the federal estate tax. Many are available to avoid the federal estate tax entirely thanks to a broad, generous exemption, colloquially referred to as a “coupon.” So long as the total value of your estate does not exceed this exemption amount, you will not be subject to the federal estate tax. This amount also rises annually at pace with inflation.
As of 2019, the federal estate tax exemption is $11.4 million, meaning any estate with a total value greater than $11.4 million after deductions and other exemptions is subject to federal estate tax. Eligibility for this tax can represent a substantial tax liability, so it is in your best interest to optimize your assets to avoid it, if possible. Luckily, an experienced estate tax protection attorney can help you exercise the numerous legal means of preserving your assets as much as possible.
One of the most useful tools is what is called the “unlimited marital deduction.” As the name might imply, this allows you to deduct the value of any of your estate that you transfer to your spouse upon passing away. More practically, this means you could decide to transfer the entirety of your estate – or enough to get below the federal exemption threshold – to your spouse, and thus avoid any federal estate tax liability. However, note that this only “passes the buck,” as your spouse’s augmented estate will then potentially be subject to the estate tax when they pass, unless they remarry and carry out the procedure themselves.
Often, a skilled estate planning lawyer can whittle down the total value of your estate through the unlimited marital deduction and other commonly used deductions and credits to an acceptable amount not levied by the federal estate tax. Our team at Weldon Law Group, PLLC can help identify and leverage the exemptions for which you and your estate qualify.
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