Successor Trustee Liability for Unpaid Estate Tax

In a previous writing, I discussed the potential of an executor to be personally liable for a decedent’s tax obligations.[1] That discussion was based on lessons learned from a Tax Court opinion,[2] outlining certain steps for executors to consider in minimizing exposure to such personal liability. In 2023, in a split decision, the Ninth Circuit…
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Crider Trust Case – The Case for the Cautious Fiduciary

On February 8, 2024, the Mississippi Supreme Court issued its opinion[1] regarding an issue of first impression regarding Mississippi’s Principal and Income Act of 2013 (the “Act”).[2] As a worthwhile note, the Court noted that this is an issue of first impression and acknowledged as well as appeared to oblige the parties so as to…
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Estate Planning with Partnership Interests: Income Tax Considerations

Small businesses predominate the United States.[1] Many of those businesses operate through entities taxed as partnerships.[2] Those entities may be general partnerships, limited partnerships, LLC’s, or other state law entity types.[3] Many partnerships are formed as part of family and estate planning. Some benefits of the use of partnerships in estate planning include, but are…
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Insurance Arrangement Found to be Split Dollar Insurance Arrangement

Split dollar life insurance arrangements can take on a number of forms, and the exact structure of the arrangement determines the tax consequences, which can become complicated quickly. In a recent case out of the District Court of Ohio, the court held that an insurance arrangement between a single member C corporation, Peter E. McGowan…
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Life Settlements of Life Insurance Policies: What, When, and How

Many individuals take out life insurance policies for valid planning reasons which later are no longer needed or desirable. Alternatively, the policy owner may need current liquidity. While many policies can be surrendered for their cash value or the owner may take loans against the policy, there may be other options. One of those options…
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Chief Counsel Advice Memorandum Debunks Tax Avoidance Scheme Using Trust

In a recent Chief Counsel Advice Memorandum[1] (“CCM”), the office of the IRS Chief Counsel debunks the income taxation, or lack thereof, found in promotional materials promoting a structure known as a “Non-grantor, irrevocable, complex, discretionary, spendthrift trust”, with a note that the structure may be referred to by several other similar but slightly different…
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Your Estate Plan and Life Insurance – A Complementing Pair

It is estimated that approximately 52% of all Americans have some form of life insurance. On the other hand, there are also estimates that only 27% percent of Americans have some form of an estate plan in place. This article provides a brief and simple overview of how the two are not mutually exclusive, and…
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Can the IRS Levy on Trust Assets?

Most people believe that assets held in trust for their benefit, at least to the extent the trust assets were left in trust by a third party (such as, for example, a parent), to be exempt from the claims of their creditors. As a general rule, this belief is well founded. However, as for claims…
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Mississippi Probate Review

Probate, a word that strikes fear into the hearts of untold masses. Everyone knows that probate is an extremely complex, time consuming, and expensive process. But is it really? Certainly, in many circumstances it can be, but such is not always the case. In this article, I will outline the basics of the probate process…
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[**Practice Alert: Corporate Transparency Act is Here: What You Need to Know**](https://esapllc.com/practice-alert-cta-mar-2024/)
[**Practice Alert: Corporate Transparency Act is Here: What You Need to Know**](https://esapllc.com/practice-alert-cta-mar-2024/)