L&H Insights

Fortify Your Estate Plan Against Undue Influence Claims

Posted by L&H CPAs on Jul 12, 2018 10:55:00 AM

Of course, you expect the declarations in your will to be carried out, as required by law. Usually, that’s exactly what happens with wills. However, it’s possible your will could be contested and your true intentions defeated if someone is found to have exerted “undue influence” over your decisions. 

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Tags: Estate Planning

The Tax Impact of the TCJA on Estate Planning

Posted by L&H CPAs on Jul 11, 2018 10:50:24 AM



The massive changes the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act (TCJA) made to income taxes have garnered the most attention. But the new law also made major changes to gift and estate taxes. While the TCJA didn’t repeal these taxes, it did significantly reduce the number of taxpayers who’ll be subject to them, at least for the next several years. Nevertheless, factoring taxes into your estate planning is still important.

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Tags: Estate Planning

The Pros and Cons of a SCIN

Posted by L&H CPAs on Jul 2, 2018 7:31:32 PM



Many estate planning techniques are intended to minimize or even eliminate gift and estate taxes when transferring assets to family members. Sometimes, the most powerful techniques also have a significant drawback: mortality risk.

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Tags: Estate Planning

Think Twice Before Naming a Minor as Beneficiary

Posted by L&H CPAs on Jun 18, 2018 6:57:40 PM


A common estate planning mistake is to designate a minor as beneficiary — or contingent beneficiary — of a life insurance policy or retirement plan. While making your young child the beneficiary of such assets may seem like an excellent way to provide for him or her in the case of your untimely death, doing so can have significant undesirable consequences. 

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Tags: Estate Planning

Your Original Will: Does Your Family Know Where to Locate It?

Posted by L&H CPAs on Jun 12, 2018 11:34:29 AM

In a world that’s increasingly paperless, you’re likely becoming accustomed to conducting a variety of transactions digitally. But when it comes to your last will and testament, only an original, signed document will do.

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Tags: Estate Planning

Provide for Your Spouse, Then Your Kids, with a QTIP Trust

Posted by L&H CPAs on Jun 6, 2018 11:32:00 AM



If you want to preserve as much wealth as possible for your children, but you leave property to your spouse outright, there’s no guarantee your objective will be met. This may be a concern if your spouse has poor money management skills or if you two don’t see eye to eye on how assets should be distributed to your children. In both of these situations, a properly designed qualified terminable interest property (QTIP) trust may be the answer. 

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Tags: Estate Planning

Beware IRD If You’ve Received an Inheritance

Posted by L&H CPAs on Jun 4, 2018 8:05:55 PM



Most people are genuinely appreciative of inheritances. But sometimes it may be too good to be true. While inherited property is typically tax-free to the recipient, this isn’t the case with an asset that’s considered income in respect of a decedent (IRD).

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Tags: Estate Planning

4 Estate Planning Techniques for Blended Families

Posted by L&H CPAs on May 15, 2018 1:09:22 PM


Today, it’s not unusual for a family to include children from prior marriages. These “blended” families can create estate planning complications that may lead to challenges in the courts after your death.

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Tags: Estate Planning

A Total Return Unitrust Can Help Maintain Family Harmony

Posted by L&H CPAs on May 3, 2018 11:57:09 AM

A traditional trust can sometimes create a conflict between the lifetime and remainder beneficiaries. For example, investment strategies that provide growth that benefits remainder beneficiaries can leave lifetime beneficiaries with little or no annual payouts. This makes it more difficult for your estate plan to achieve your objectives and places your trustee in a difficult position. A total return unitrust (TRU) may offer a solution.

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Tags: Estate Planning

Don’t Overlook Securities Laws When Planning Your Estate

Posted by L&H CPAs on Apr 23, 2018 2:39:40 PM

For a variety of estate planning and asset management purposes, many affluent families hold their assets in trusts, family investment vehicles or charitable foundations. If assets held in this manner include interests in hedge funds, private equity funds or other “unregistered” securities, it’s important to ensure that the entity is qualified to hold such investments.

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Tags: Estate Planning

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