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How an estate tax repeal might affect planning

Nevada residents whose estates are large enough to worry about federal estate tax will probably want to review their estate plan if there is an estate tax repeal. For most people who expect to owe estate tax, devising ways to reduce the value of the estate and bring the tax down as close to the exemption amount as possible is the cornerstone of the estate plan.

One way people might try to keep the value of their estate down is by making a gift to a multi-generation trust. This would be funded depending on what the generation-skipping tax exemption is. An estate plan might be set up to fund an exemption trust and a marital trust for any additional assets.

While it is not yet clear what will happen with the estate tax, people might want to start thinking about how they could revise their estate plan if it is repealed. They might want to act quickly if there is a change.

Whether or not an estate is large enough to have estate tax come into play, people might still want to create an estate plan. There are a number of reasons that an adult may want to do will planning and other parts of an estate plan. Without an estate plan, the state will decide how assets are distributed, and that might not match a person's wishes. A will may also appoint guardians for any minor children. A person may also want to consider a trust. Trusts can be useful at many different income levels and can help manage assets for beneficiaries. Another aspect of estate planning is making plans for end-of-life care. This may include appointing people under a power of attorney to make certain decisions if the principal becomes incapacitated.

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