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JK Lasser's New Rules for Estate, Retirement, and Tax Planning, + Website, 5th Edition


Current, relevant estate, retirement and tax planning strategies with expert insight and advice

JK Lasser's New Rules for Estate, Retirement and Tax Planning is the authoritative guide to estate, retirement and tax planning, fully updated to reflect new changes and legal updates. Written by some of the most recognized experts in the field, this book offers useful planning advice for people of various ages and income levels, including information on retirement planning, trusts, charitable contributions, gifts, life insurance, and wills. In this guide, you'll find up-to-the-minute facts, valuable insight, and solid strategies to help you preserve your wealth and plan your estate under current tax rules. The helpful companion website provides spreadsheets, tools, and additional reading to help you get organized, while the book's expert guidance provides the background information you need to prepare properly.

Estate planning is a complex topic, made even more complex by constantly changing laws. Failing to plan properly can result in your loved ones losing out on much of your hard-earned assets, and researching the topic on your own can be a minefield of assumptions, misunderstandings, and potential legal consequences. New Rules for Estate, Retirement and Tax Planning helps you sidestep the confusion, distilling the information down to what's relevant and current. This practical resource covers a wealth of important issues, including:

  • Estate planning, taxation, and investing for maximum growth
  • The role of wills, executors, and trusts, and how to treat charitable contributions
  • Life insurance, retirement planning, Social Security claiming strategies and the do's and don'ts of gifting
  • Business planning, including succession, asset protection, and family limited partnerships

You've worked hard your entire life. You managed to accumulate assets. New Rules for Estate, Retirement and Tax Planning will help you maximize the transfer of your assets to the people and charities you love rather than the federal government in the form of taxes.



Chapter 1: American Taxpayer Relief Act of 2012

Marginal Ordinary Income Tax Rates

Capital Gains Tax Rates and Qualified Dividends

Educational Provisions

Business and Corporate Tax Relief

Estate, Gift, and Generation-Skipping Transfers

The 3.8% Tax on Net Investment Income

Chapter 2: Estate Planning

What Is Estate Planning?

The Benefits of Estate Planning

The Nightmares of Poor Planning

The Myths of Estate Planning

Guidelines for Successful Estate Planning

Chapter 3: The Estate Tax System

Determining Your Estate Net Worth

Understanding the Estate Tax System

Your Estate Tax Picture

Your Future Estate

Overview of Estate Planning Strategies

Chapter 4: Investment Strategies for Maximizing Estate Growth

Growth Strategy with a Safety Net?

Prioritizing Your Investment Dollars

Retirement Planning: Choosing the Best Investment Environments

Some Final Thoughts on Investing

Chapter 5: Retirement Planning: Living Your Dream

How Much Is Enough?

Your Retirement Requirements

Best Retirement Strategies

Reverse Mortgages

Social Security Strategies

Customizing Your Healthcare Plan

Chapter 6: You Don't Have a Will? Big Trouble!

Property Transfers at Death

Transfers via Probate

Direct Transfers by Title

Other Methods of Property Ownership

Choosing the Best Methods of Ownership

Setting Estate Planning Goals

Chapter 7: Where There's a Will, There's Your Way!

What Is a Will?

Types of Wills

Advantages and Disadvantages of Wills

Intelligent Decisions Concerning Your Will's Basic Provisions

Executing Your Will

Where to Store Your Will

Other Important Documents

Working with Your Attorney

When to Review Your Estate Plan

Chapter 8: Using Trusts in Your Estate Plan

The Credit Shelter Trust Will


Marital Trusts

Spendthrift Trust

Standby Trust

Other Trusts

Chapter 9: Understanding the Living Trust

Advantages of Living Trusts

Disadvantages of Living Trusts

How a Living Trust Operates

Transferring Property into Your Living Trust

Types of Property Likely to Be Transferred

Living Trust Myths

Transacting Business with Your Trust

Chapter 10: Using Insurance in Your Estate Plan

Life Insurance

Using Life Insurance to Replace Income

How Much Life Insurance Do You Need?

What Type of Life Insurance Is Best for You?

Insurance on a Homemaker

Insurance on Adult Children

How to Get the Best Deal on Term Life Insurance

Insurance Warnings!

Using Life Insurance for Estate Liquidity

How Much Is Enough?

What Type of Life Insurance Is Best for Estate Liquidity?

The Irrevocable Life Insurance Trust

Getting Your Life Insurance into Your Trust

Using Life Insurance to Leverage Your Estate

About Your Cash Values

Long-Term Care Insurance

Chapter 11: Smart Strategies for Gifting Assets to Family Members

The Annual Gift Tax Exclusion

Unintended Gifts

Filing a Gift Tax Return

The Lifetime Applicable Exclusion Amount

Outright Gifts

When the Donee Is a Minor

Other Tax-Free Gifts

Family Gifts Utilizing Trusts

Grantor Retained Annuity Trust

Grantor Retained Unitrust

Qualified Personal Residence Trust

Taking Advantage of Generation-Skipping Transfers

Sales to Family Members

Sales to Intentionally Defective Grantor Trusts (IDGT)

The Legacy Trust

Chapter 12: Strategic Planning with Charities

Outright Gifts to Charities

Testamentary Gifts to Charities

Gifts Using Charitable Trusts

Using Your Charitable Trust for Retirement Planning

The Private Foundation

Chapter 13: Family Limited Partnerships

General Structure of the Family Limited Partnership

Family Limited Partnership Rules

Chapter 14: Succession Planning for the Family Business or Farm

Special Estate Tax Benefits for Farmers and Closely Held Business Owners

Valuing Your Business or Farm

Succession or Sale?

Succession Planning: Keeping the Family Business in the Family

Maximizing Your Business's Value through a Sale

Structuring Your Buy-Sell Agreement

Types of Buy-Sell Agreements

Funding the Buy-Sell Agreement

One Final Strategy?The Employee Stock Ownership Plan

Chapter 15: Asset Protection Strategies

The Concept of Fraudulent Transfers

A Word about Jointly Held Property

Retirement Plans

Life Insurance

Using Trusts to Protect Assets

Using Limited Liability Entities to Protect Assets

Use of Multiple Limited Liability Entities

Foreign Asset Protection Trusts

Domestic Asset Protection Trusts

Chapter 16: Personal Business Planning Issues

Choosing the Right Entity for Your Business

Closing Thoughts

Importance of a Business Plan

Dealing with Parents and Their Money

Appendix A: Professional Advisors

Appendix B: Estate Planning Terms

Appendix C: IRS Life Expectancy Table