We prepare customized wills, trusts, powers of attorney, advance health care directives, and other estate planning documents. Each estate plan is tailored to the client’s unique circumstances. Our clients include individuals, married and unmarried couples, California registered domestic partners, and parents with minor children.
We advise all our clients on the tax issues related to their estate planning. All estate plans should account for capital gains tax and property tax reassessment. In the recent past, most estate plans also had to account for federal gift tax, estate tax, and generation skipping transfer (GST) tax. But since 2011, increases in the exemption (also known as the unified credit) have eliminated such tax exposure for all except the largest estates.
For clients with larger estates, we have expertise in complex estate planning for avoidance or reduction of gift tax, estate tax, and GST tax. We have helped with irrevocable life insurance trusts (ILITs), gifting strategies (outright and in trust), charitable trusts, grantor retained annuity trusts (GRATs), and business entity planning. For married couples with possible estate tax exposure, we advise on whether and how they can benefit from incorporating bypass trusts (also known as credit shelter trusts), portability, marital trusts, QTIP elections, and QDoTs into their estate planning.
Estate Planning for International Clients and Assets
Our clients include permanent residents, bi-national couples, Californians with foreign assets, and foreigners with California assets. We help these clients develop a coordinated estate plan that handles their worldwide assets, and we help them navigate through estate and inheritance tax laws in both the United States and abroad.
Formation and Succession Planning for Small Business and Partnerships
For clients who own their own business or professional practice, we help set up business entities and come up with a plan of succession. In the event of sudden disability or death, the succession plan would provide a framework for either winding up the business, or else keeping the business operational while ownership and management are transferred to family members, employees, or colleagues.