Connections for Success



Current Conditions are Favorable for Cost-Effective Wealth Transfers
Eileen Cozzi

The ongoing novel coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic has taken a terrible toll on the economy. But the current low-interest-rate environment, coupled with depressed asset values, means that now may be a good time to transfer wealth to your children and grandchildren. Consider making gifts For 2020, the federal gift and estate tax exemption is an inflation-adjusted […]


Charitable IRA Rollover Eases Tax Pain of RMDs
Luke Schillo

One downside of contributing to a traditional IRA is that, once you reach age 70½, you must begin taking required minimum distributions (RMDs) — and pay taxes on those distributions — whether you need the money or not. But if you are charitably inclined, you can use a qualified charitable distribution (QCD) to avoid taxes […]


Five Tax-Planning Tips for Retirees
James V. Petitpren, II

The combination of Social Security, pensions and withdrawals from retirement savings can complicate tax-planning for retirees. If you are retired or approaching retirement, consider these five tax-planning tips.


Five Good Reasons to Turn Down An Inheritance
Frank L. Washelesky

You may use a qualified disclaimer to refuse a bequest from a loved one. Doing so will cause an asset to bypass your estate and go to the next beneficiary in line. What are the reasons you would take this action? Let’s take a closer look at five reasons.


Planning for Required Minimum Distributions from IRAs: Why You Should Consider Making/Taking ROTH IRA Conversions in Low Income Years
Frank L. Washelesky

Individual Retirement Accounts (IRAs) often account for a large portion of an individual’s overall wealth as the person reaches retirement. With few exceptions, IRAs are taxable income at the time they are withdrawn.  In addition, a 10% penalty may apply if distributions are made prior to reaching age 59-½.


Divorcing? Don’t Let Your Estate Plan Fall Through the Cracks
Eileen Cozzi

If you are going through a divorce, you are probably feeling a little overwhelmed by all the legal and financial items you must attend to before the marriage termination is final. These tasks can be difficult, but revising your estate plan does not have to be. An estate planning professional can help you update documents and ensure that your children benefit according to your wishes — not your ex-spouse’s.


Retirement Plan Changes Under the SECURE Act
Frank L. Washelesky

For many people, qualified retirement plans make up a large part of their overall savings.  There are many complex rules surrounding qualified plans and Individual Retirement Accounts (IRAs), but there have not been significant modifications for quite some time. That may all change this year as the House of Representatives has passed the Setting Every […]


Taxable Versus Tax-Advantaged: Where to Hold Investments
Frank L. Washelesky

When investing for retirement or other long-term goals, people usually prefer tax-advantaged accounts, such as IRAs, 401(k)s or 403(b)s. Certain assets are well suited to these accounts, but it may make more sense to hold other investments in taxable accounts.


Choosing a Donor Advised Fund
American Endowment Foundation

Over the last decade, the growth of donor advised funds (DAFs) has been increasing at a rapid rate.  Their simplicity to set-up, flexibility and tax-saving capabilities have proven to be an excellent tool in charitable and estate planning as well as business exit strategies. However, choosing the best DAF for a donor’s circumstances can be as varied as the different charities that the individual chooses to support.


Spousal Lifetime Access Trust: A Tool for Creditor Protection and Estate Planning
Frank L. Washelesky

Many wealthy professionals are looking for ways to protect assets from potential lawsuits or other unknown creditors without giving up substantial control. Estate tax considerations are also still important as the current large estate tax exemption ($11.4 million for individuals, or $22.8 million for married couples) is set to drop at the end of 2025, […]

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