There are several potential ways to avoid or minimize the burden of Pennsylvania's inheritance tax on a given estate, but all of them are specific to a certain set of conditions. Some of the most prevalent current strategies include establishing trusts, giving to tax-exempt entities and carefully choosing heirs.
After a loved one dies in Pennsylvania, it is necessary for you as the surviving family members to address many important legal matters, such as handling any debts that the deceased has left behind. Part of the purpose of the probate process is to settle any outstanding debts. We at Huckabee, Weiler & Levengood know that it is difficult for you to face these practical matters in the midst of your grief. It may help if you understand how the probate process pertains to the settlement of your loved one's outstanding debts.
For all of the plans you make and the precautionary measures that you take throughout your life, there are two things you simply cannot escape from: death and taxes. Many in Wyomissing might tell you that the two go hand-in-hand. Indeed, several of those that come to see us here at Huckabee, Weiler & Levengood, P.C. are concerned that much of their estates will go towards paying estate taxes (leaving little to actually go to their beneficiaries). While it is true that there in an estate tax, you should not that there are ways to avoid having to pay it.
With the widespread use of credit cards in everyday American life, it is natural to wonder what would happen if your parent or spouse passed away in Pennsylvania with a significant amount of credit card debt that remains unpaid. Will the credit card company come after you or other relatives for the outstanding debt? It is an understandable fear, but it is one that should not terrify you.
A worrying aspect of Pennsylvania estate planning is that after you die, you have no further control over how your assets are distributed. Some people fear the uncertainty of their will going through probate and want a more direct way to leave financial assets to loved ones. This is why some Pennsylvanians opt for payable on death accounts. A POD does offer some important benefits, but be aware that using a POD account is not without possible pitfalls.
Imagine you have just finished composing your last will and testament. You might believe that your will has covered everything you want to happen after you die. However, your work may be far from over. In fact, a Pennsylvania will can actually be superseded by other documents, particularly financial documents in which you have already designated a beneficiary.
Dealing with the death of a friend or family member is often accompanied by strong emotions of grief and loss. If you have been named as the administrator of an estate in Pennsylvania, you may feel even more overwhelmed. The estate executor has many crucial responsibilities in finalizing the finances and property of the deceased’s estate. Once given this important role, you must ensure that you fully understand what is being asked so that you can perform the role to the best of your ability.
Pennsylvania residents who wish to protect their wealth, ideals and investments for posterity face known and unknown challenges from various parties. Estate planning is often the answer to this problem. However, many individuals do not have adequate documents established to have a reasonable chance of carrying out their wishes should they become unable to do so themselves.
It would be so easy to think of estate planning as a responsibility for someone older or wealthier or some other category outside of yours. The truth is, though, planning for the future is important for everyone, regardless of age or economic status. Pennsylvania families who want to take care of each other well will want to take the time to designate who gets what when the time comes.
When you plan your estate and have everything in order, you probably think that once you die, there are no worries. Unfortunately, that is not true. While you may have no worries, your loved ones could be hit with an inheritance tax. It is important to understand what this is and how it works, so you can plan your estate accordingly to avoid these taxes if possible.