Annual gift tax exclusion amount increases for 2023 | accountant in baltimore county md | Weyrich, Cronin & Sorra

Annual gift tax exclusion amount increases for 2023

Did you know that one of the most effective estate-tax-saving techniques is also one of the simplest and most convenient? By making maximum use of the annual gift tax exclusion, you can pass substantial amounts of assets to loved ones during your lifetime without any gift tax. For 2022, the amount is $16,000 per recipient. In 2023, the amount will increase by $1,000, to $17,000 per recipient.

Maximizing your gifts

Despite a common misconception, federal gift tax applies to the giver of a gift, not to the recipient. But gifts can generally be structured so that they’re — at least to a limited degree — sheltered from gift tax. More specifically, they’re covered by the annual gift tax exclusion and, if necessary, the unified gift and estate tax exemption for amounts above the exclusion. (Using the unified exemption during your lifetime, however, erodes the available estate tax shelter.)

For 2022, you can give each family member up to $16,000 a year without owing any gift tax. For instance, if you have three adult children and seven grandchildren, you may give each one up to $16,000 by year end, for a total of $160,000. Then you can turn around and give each one $17,000 beginning in January 2023, for $170,000. In this example, you could reduce your estate by a grand total of $330,000 in a matter of months.

Furthermore, the annual gift exclusion is available to each taxpayer. If you’re married and your spouse consents to a joint gift, also called a “split gift,” the exclusion amount is effectively doubled to $32,000 per recipient in 2022 ($34,000 in 2023).

Bear in mind that split gifts and large gifts trigger IRS reporting responsibilities. A gift tax return is required if you exceed the annual exclusion amount, or you give joint gifts with your spouse. Unfortunately, you can’t file a “joint” gift tax return. In other words, each spouse must file an individual gift tax return for the year in which they both make gifts.

Coordinating with the lifetime exemption

The lifetime gift tax exemption is part and parcel of the unified gift and estate tax exemption. It can shelter from tax gifts above the annual gift tax exclusion. Under current law, the exemption effectively shelters $10 million from tax, indexed for inflation. In 2022, the amount is $12.06 million, and in 2023 the amount will increase to $12.92 million. However, as mentioned above, if you tap your lifetime gift tax exemption, it erodes the exemption amount available for your estate.

Exceptions to the rules

Be aware that certain gifts are exempt from gift tax, thereby preserving both the full annual gift tax exclusion amount and the exemption amount. These include gifts:

  • From one spouse to the other,
  • To a qualified charitable organization,
  • Made directly to a healthcare provider for medical expenses, and
  • Made directly to an educational institution for a student’s tuition.

For example, you might pay the tuition for a grandchild’s upcoming school year directly to the college. That gift won’t count against the annual gift tax exclusion.

Planning your gifting strategy

The annual gift tax exclusion remains a powerful tool in your estate-planning toolbox. Contact us for help developing a gifting strategy that works best for your specific situation.

© 2022

 

Choosing a retirement plan for your small business | quickbooks consultant in baltimore county md | Weyrich, Cronin & Sorra

Choosing a retirement plan for your small business

Most growing small businesses reach a point where the owner looks around at the leadership team and says, “It’s time. We need to offer employees a retirement plan.”

Often, this happens when the company is financially stable enough to administer a retirement plan and make substantive contributions. Other times it occurs when the business grows weary of losing good job candidates because of a less-than-impressive benefits package.

Whatever the reason, if you don’t have a retirement plan and see one in your immediate future, you’ll want to carefully select the one that will work best for your company and its employees. Here are some basics about three of the most tried-and-true plans.

1. 401(k) plans offer flexibility

Available to any employer with one or more employees, a 401(k) plan allows employees to contribute to individual accounts. Contributions to a traditional 401(k) are made pretax, reducing taxable income, but distributions are taxable.

Both employees and employers can contribute. For 2023, employees can contribute up to $22,500 (up from $20,500 in 2022). Participants who are age 50 or older by the end of the year can make an additional “catch-up” contribution of $7,500 (up from $6,500 in 2022). Within limits, employers can deduct contributions made on behalf of eligible employees.

Plans may offer employees a Roth 401(k) option, which, on some level, is the opposite of a traditional 401(k). This is because contributions don’t reduce taxable income currently but distributions are tax-free.

Establishing a 401(k) plan typically requires, among other steps, adopting a written plan and arranging a trust fund for plan assets. Annually, employers must file Form 5500 and perform discrimination testing to ensure the plan doesn’t favor highly compensated employees. With a “safe harbor” 401(k), however, the plan isn’t subject to discrimination testing.

2. Employers fully fund SEP plans

Simplified Employee Pension (SEP) plans are available to businesses of any size. Establishing one requires completing Form 5305-SEP, “Simplified Employee Pension—Individual Retirement Accounts Contribution Agreement,” but there’s no annual filing requirement.

SEP plans are funded entirely by employer contributions, but you can decide each year whether to contribute. Contributions immediately vest with employees. In 2023, contribution limits will be 25% of an employee’s compensation or $66,000 (up from $61,000 in 2022).

3. SIMPLEs target small businesses

A Savings Incentive Match Plan for Employees (SIMPLE) IRA is a type of plan available only to businesses with no more than 100 employees. It’s up to employees whether to contribute. Although employer contributions are required, you can choose whether to:

  • Match employee contributions up to 3% of compensation, which can be reduced to as low as 1% in two of five years, or
  • Make a 2% nonelective contribution, including to employees who don’t contribute.

Employees are immediately 100% vested in contributions, whether from themselves or their employers. The contribution limit in 2023 will be $15,500 (up from $14,000 in 2022).

A big step forward

Obviously, choosing a retirement plan to offer your employees is just the first step in the implementation process. But it’s a big step forward for any business. Let us help you assess the costs and tax impact of any plan type that you’re considering.

© 2022

 

Reinforce your cybersecurity defenses regularly | business consulting services in hunt valley md | Weyrich, Cronin & Sorra

Reinforce your cybersecurity defenses regularly

If you’ve been in business for any amount of time, you probably don’t need anyone to tell you about the importance of cybersecurity. However, unlike the lock to a physical door, which generally lasts a good long time, measures you take to protect your company from hackers and malware need to be updated and reinforced much more regularly.

Two common categories

Most of today’s business cyberattacks fall into two main categories: ransomware and social engineering.

In a ransomware attack, hackers infiltrate a company’s computer network, encrypt or freeze critical data, and hold that data hostage until their ransom demands are met. It’s become a highly common form of cybercrime. Just one example, which occurred in October 2022, involved a major health care system that had recently executed a major M&A deal.

On the other hand, social engineering attacks use manipulation and pressure to trick employees into granting cybercriminals access to internal systems or bank accounts. The two most common forms of social engineering are phishing and business email compromise (BEC).

In a typical phishing scam, cyberthieves send fake, but often real-looking, emails to employees to entice them into downloading attachments that contain malware. Or they try to get employees to click on links that automatically download the malware.

In either case, once installed on an employee’s computer, the malware can give hackers remote access to a company’s computer network — including customer data and bank accounts. (Also beware of “smishing,” which is when fraudsters use text messages for the same purpose.)

BEC attacks are similar. Here, cyberthieves send fake emails mainly to accounting employees saying the company’s bank accounts have been frozen because of fraud. The emails instruct employees to reply with account usernames and passwords to supposedly resolve the problem. With this information, thieves can wreak financial havoc — including initiating unauthorized wire transfers — which can be difficult, if not impossible, to reverse.

Preventative measures

Here are a few things you can do to guard against cyberattacks:

Continually train employees. Conduct mandatory training sessions at regular intervals to ensure your employees are familiar with your cybersecurity policies and can recognize the many possible forms of a cyberattack.

Maintain IT infrastructure. Instruct and remind employees to download software updates when they’re available. Enforce a strict policy of regular password changes. If two-factor authentication is feasible, set it up. This is particularly important with remote employees.

Encrypt and back up data. All company data should be encrypted and regularly backed up on a separate off-site server. In the event of a ransomware attack, you’ll still be able to access that data without paying the ransom.

Restrict access to your Wi-Fi network. First and foremost, it should be password-protected. Also, move your router to a secure location and install multiple firewalls. If you offer free Wi-Fi to customers, use a separate network for that purpose.

Consider insurance coverage. Insurers now sell policies that will help pay costs associated with data breaches while also covering some legal fees associated with cyberattacks. However, you’ll need to shop carefully, set a reasonable budget and read the fine print.

Defend your data

None of the measures mentioned above are one-time activities. On a regular basis, businesses need to determine what new training employees need and whether there are better ways to secure IT infrastructure and sensitive data. Let us help you assess, measure and track the costs associated with preserving your company’s cybersecurity.

© 2022

 

Providing fringe benefits to employees with no tax strings attached | tax accountants in baltimore city | Weyrich, Cronin & Sorra

Providing fringe benefits to employees with no tax strings attached

Businesses can provide benefits to employees that don’t cost them much or anything at all. However, in some cases, employees may have to pay tax on the value of these benefits.

Here are examples of two types of benefits which employees generally can exclude from income:

  1. A no-additional-cost benefit. This involves a service provided to employees that doesn’t impose any substantial additional cost on the employer. These services often occur in industries with excess capacity. For example, a hotel might allow employees to stay in vacant rooms or a golf course may allow employees to play during slow times.
  2. A de minimis fringe benefit. This includes property or a service, provided infrequently by an employer to employees, with a value so small that accounting for it is unreasonable or administratively impracticable. Examples are coffee, the personal use of a copier or meals provided occasionally to employees working overtime.

However, many fringe benefits are taxable, meaning they’re included in the employees’ wages and reported on Form W-2. Unless an exception applies, these benefits are subject to federal income tax withholding, Social Security (unless the employee has already reached the year’s wage base limit) and Medicare.

Court case provides lessons

The line between taxable and nontaxable fringe benefits may not be clear. As illustrated in one recent case, some taxpayers get into trouble if they cross too far over the line.

A retired airline pilot received free stand-by airline tickets from his former employer for himself, his spouse, his daughter and two other adult relatives. The value of the tickets provided to the adult relatives was valued $5,478. The airline reported this amount as income paid to the retired pilot on Form 1099-MISC, which it filed with the IRS. The taxpayer and his spouse filed a joint tax return for the year in question but didn’t include the value of the free tickets in gross income.

The IRS determined that the couple was required to include the value of the airline tickets provided to their adult relatives in their gross income. The retired pilot argued the value of the tickets should be excluded as a de minimis fringe.

The U.S. Tax Court agreed with the IRS that the taxpayers were required to include in gross income the value of airline tickets provided to their adult relatives. The value, the court stated, didn’t qualify for exclusion as a no-additional-cost service because the adult relatives weren’t the taxpayers’ dependent children. In addition, the value wasn’t excludable under the tax code as a de minimis fringe benefit “because the tickets had a value high enough that accounting for their provision was not unreasonable or administratively impracticable.” (TC Memo 2022-36)

You may be able to exclude from wages the value of certain fringe benefits that your business provides to employees. But the requirements are strict. If you have questions about the tax implications of fringe benefits, contact us.

© 2022

Employers: In 2023, the Social Security wage base is going up | cpa in baltimore county md | Weyrich, Cronin & Sorra

Employers: In 2023, the Social Security wage base is going up

The Social Security Administration recently announced that the wage base for computing Social Security tax will increase to $160,200 for 2023 (up from $147,000 for 2022). Wages and self-employment income above this threshold aren’t subject to Social Security tax.

Basics about Social Security

The Federal Insurance Contributions Act (FICA) imposes two taxes on employers, employees and self-employed workers. One is for the Old Age, Survivors and Disability Insurance program, which is commonly known as Social Security. The other is for the Hospital Insurance program, which is commonly known as Medicare.

There’s a maximum amount of compensation subject to the Social Security tax, but no maximum for Medicare tax. For 2023, the FICA tax rate for employers is 7.65% — 6.2% for Social Security and 1.45% for Medicare (the same as in 2022).

2023 updates

For 2023, an employee will pay:

  • 6.2% Social Security tax on the first $160,200 of wages (6.2% of $160,200 makes the maximum tax $9,932.40), plus
  • 1.45% Medicare tax on the first $200,000 of wages ($250,000 for joint returns; $125,000 for married taxpayers filing a separate return), plus
  • 2.35% Medicare tax (regular 1.45% Medicare tax plus 0.9% additional Medicare tax) on all wages in excess of $200,000 ($250,000 for joint returns; $125,000 for married taxpayers filing a separate return).

For 2023, the self-employment tax imposed on self-employed people is:

  • 12.4% Social Security tax on the first $160,200 of self-employment income, for a maximum tax of $19,864.80 (12.4% of $160,200), plus
  • 2.9% Medicare tax on the first $200,000 of self-employment income ($250,000 of combined self-employment income on a joint return, $125,000 on a return of a married individual filing separately), plus
  • 3.8% (2.9% regular Medicare tax plus 0.9% additional Medicare tax) on all self-employment income in excess of $200,000 ($250,000 of combined self-employment income on a joint return, $125,000 for married taxpayers filing a separate return).

Employees with more than one employer

What happens if one of your employees works for your business and has a second job? That employee would have taxes withheld from two different employers. Can the employee ask you to stop withholding Social Security tax once he or she reaches the wage base threshold? Unfortunately, no. Each employer must withhold Social Security taxes from the individual’s wages, even if the combined withholding exceeds the maximum amount that can be imposed for the year. Fortunately, the employee will get a credit on his or her tax return for any excess withheld.

Looking forward

Contact us if you have questions about 2023 payroll tax filing or payments. We can help ensure you stay in compliance.

© 2022

Inflation means you and your employees can save more for retirement in 2023 | accounting firm in baltimore county md | Weyrich, Cronin & Sorra

Inflation means you and your employees can save more for retirement in 2023

How much can you and your employees contribute to your 401(k)s next year — or other retirement plans? In Notice 2022-55, the IRS recently announced cost-of-living adjustments that apply to the dollar limitations for pensions, as well as other qualified retirement plans for 2023. The amounts increased more than they have in recent years due to inflation.

401(k) plans

The 2023 contribution limit for employees who participate in 401(k) plans will increase to $22,500 (up from $20,500 in 2022). This contribution amount also applies to 403(b) plans, most 457 plans and the federal government’s Thrift Savings Plan.

The catch-up contribution limit for employees age 50 and over who participate in 401(k) plans and the other plans mentioned above will increase to $7,500 (up from $6,500 in 2022). Therefore, participants in 401(k) plans (and the others listed above) who are 50 and older can contribute up to $30,000 in 2023.

SEP plans and defined contribution plans

The limitation for defined contribution plans, including a Simplified Employee Pension (SEP) plan, will increase from $61,000 to $66,000. To participate in a SEP, an eligible employee must receive at least a certain amount of compensation for the year. That amount will increase in 2023 to $750 (from $650 for 2022).

SIMPLE plans

Deferrals to a SIMPLE plan will increase to $15,500 in 2023 (up from $14,000 in 2022). The catch-up contribution limit for employees age 50 and over who participate in SIMPLE plans will increase to $3,500 in 2023, up from $3,000.

Other plan limits

The IRS also announced that in 2023:

  • The limitation on the annual benefit under a defined benefit plan will increase from $245,000 to $265,000. For a participant who separated from service before January 1, 2023, the participant’s limitation under a defined benefit plan is computed by multiplying the participant’s compensation limitation, as adjusted through 2022, by 1.0833.
  • The dollar limitation concerning the definition of “key employee” in a top-heavy plan will increase from $200,000 to $215,000.
  • The dollar amount for determining the maximum account balance in an employee stock ownership plan subject to a five-year distribution period will increase from $1,230,000 to $1,330,000, while the dollar amount used to determine the lengthening of the five-year distribution period will increase from $245,000 to $265,000.
  • The limitation used in the definition of “highly compensated employee” will increase from $135,000 to $150,000.

IRA contributions

The 2023 limit on annual contributions to an individual IRA will increase to $6,500 (up from $6,000 for 2022). The IRA catch-up contribution limit for individuals age 50 and older isn’t subject to an annual cost-of-living adjustment and will remain $1,000.

Plan ahead

Current high inflation rates will make it easier for you and your employees to save much more in your retirement plans in 2023. The contribution amounts will be a great deal higher next year than they’ve been in recent years. Contact us if you have questions about your tax-advantaged retirement plan or if you want to explore other retirement plan options.

© 2022

How inflation will affect your 2022 and 2023 tax bills | accountant in washington dc | Weyrich, Cronin & Sorra

How inflation will affect your 2022 and 2023 tax bills

The effects of inflation are all around. You’re probably paying more for gas, food, health care and other expenses than you were last year. Are you wondering how high inflation will affect your federal income tax bill for 2023? The IRS recently announced next year’s inflation-adjusted tax amounts for several provisions.

Some highlights

Standard deduction. What does an increased standard deduction mean for you? A larger standard deduction will shelter more income from federal income tax next year. For 2023, the standard deduction will increase to $13,850 for single taxpayers, $27,700 for married couples filing jointly and $20,800 for heads of household. This is up from the 2022 amounts of $12,950 for single taxpayers, $25,900 for married couples filing jointly and $19,400 for heads of household.

The highest tax rate. For 2023, the highest tax rate of 37% will affect single taxpayers and heads of households with income exceeding $578,125 ($693,750 for married taxpayers filing jointly). This is up from 2022 when the 37% rate affects single taxpayers and heads of households with income exceeding $539,900 ($647,850 for married couples filing jointly).

Retirement plans. Many retirement plan limits will increase for 2023. That means you’ll have an opportunity to save more for retirement if you have one of these plans and you contribute the maximum amount allowed. For example, in 2023, individuals will be able to contribute up to $22,500 to their 401(k) plans, 403(b) plans and most 457 plans. This is up from $20,500 in 2022. The catch-up contribution limit for employees age 50 and over who participate in these plans will also rise in 2023 to $7,500. This is up from $6,500 in 2022.

For those with IRA accounts, the limit on annual contributions will rise for 2023 to $6,500 (from $6,000). The IRA catch-up contribution for those age 50 and up remains at $1,000 because it isn’t adjusted for inflation.

Flexible spending accounts (FSAs). These accounts allow owners to pay for qualified medical costs with pre-tax dollars. If you participate in an employer-sponsored health Flexible Spending Account (FSA), you can contribute more in 2023. The annual contribution amount will rise to $3,050 (up from $2,850 in 2022). FSA funds must be used by year end unless an employer elects to allow a two-and-one-half-month carryover grace period. For 2023, the amount that can be carried over to the following year will rise to $610 (up from $570 for 2022).

Taxable gifts. Each year, you can make annual gifts up to the federal gift tax exclusion amount. Annual gifts help reduce the taxable value of your estate without reducing your unified federal estate and gift tax exemption. For 2023, the first $17,000 of gifts to as many recipients as you would like (other than gifts of future interests) aren’t included in the total amount of taxable gifts. (This is up from $16,000 in 2022.)

Thinking ahead

While it will be quite a while before you have to file your 2023 tax return, it won’t be long until the IRS begins accepting tax returns for 2022. When it comes to taxes, it’s nice to know what’s ahead so you can take advantage of all the tax breaks to which you are entitled.

© 2022

 

The audit is over. Now what? | cpa in washington dc | Weyrich, Cronin & Sorra

The audit is over. Now what?

Whew! That’s probably your reaction when outside experts announce that their audit of your not-for-profit is complete. But even if auditors have left your premises and returned the documents they’ve reviewed, the work isn’t really over. Not only do your executive director and board need to review the audit report, but it may be necessary to address auditor concerns by making changes to your organization.

Review the draft

Once outside auditors complete their work, they typically present a draft report to an organization’s audit committee, executive director and senior financial staffers. Those individuals should take the time to review the draft before it’s presented to the board of directors.

Your audit committee and management also need to meet with the auditors before the board presentation. Often auditors will provide a management letter (also called “communication with those charged with governance”) highlighting operational areas and controls that need improvement. Your nonprofit’s team can respond to these comments, indicating ways they plan to improve operations and controls, to be included in the final letter. The audit committee also can use the meeting to ensure the audit is properly comprehensive.

Assess internal controls

The final audit report will state whether your nonprofit’s financial statements present its financial position in accordance with U.S. Generally Accepted Accounting Principles. The statements must be presented without any inaccuracies or “material” — meaning significant — misrepresentation.

The auditors also will identify, in a separate letter, specific concerns about material internal control issues. Adequate internal controls are critical for preventing, catching and remedying misstatements that could compromise the integrity of financial statements. If the auditors have found your internal controls to be weak, promptly shore them up.

Gather feedback

One important audit committee task is to obtain your executive director’s impression of the auditors and audit process. Were the auditors efficient, or did they perform or require redundant work? Did they demonstrate the requisite expertise, skills and understanding? Were they disruptive to operations? Consider this input when deciding whether to retain the same firm for the next audit.

The committee also might want to seek feedback from employees who worked most closely with the auditors. In addition to feedback on the auditors, they may have suggestions on how to streamline the process for the next audit.

Fiscal responsibility

Your donors, grantmakers and other supporters expect your organization to do everything in its power to ensure funds are used appropriately and responsibly. If you fail to act on issues identified in an audit, it could lead to asset misappropriation and seriously damage your nonprofit’s reputation and viability. Contact us if you have questions, require an audit or need help improving internal controls.

© 2022

 

Why your nonprofit might want to compensate board members | tax preparation in alexandria va | Weyrich, Cronin & Sorra

Why your nonprofit might want to compensate board members

Because most not-for-profit board members serve voluntarily, you may not have known compensating them was an option. But depending on the type of organization, the expertise and experience expected of board members, and the required time commitment, it may make sense to compensate these hardworking individuals.

Pros and cons

There are advantages and drawbacks to compensating board members. Your organization might, for example, find it worthwhile to offer compensation to attract individuals who are prominent or bring highly specialized expertise — or are expected to invest significant time and effort. Also, if you’re trying to build a more diverse board, it may be easier to recruit new members if you offer a financial incentive.

Some organizations, such as nonprofit hospitals, may have business models that compete with those of for-profit companies. In such cases, board compensation often is appropriate. In general, providing compensation can improve board member performance and promote professionalism. And it may incentivize meeting attendance and accountability.

But there are drawbacks to paying board members. First, it can look bad. Donors expect their funds to go to program services, and board compensation represents resources diverted from your organization’s mission. Further, there are legal and IRS implications. For example, in some states volunteer board members are protected from legal liability, while compensated members may not be.

Avoiding taxes and penalties

If you decide to compensate board members, make sure your arrangement complies with the Internal Revenue Code’s private inurement and excess benefit regulations, as well as IRS rules about “reasonable compensation.” Failure to do so can result in excise taxes, penalties and even the loss of your tax-exempt status.

Independent directors, an independent governance or compensation committee, or an independent consultant should set the amount of (or formula for) compensation. Whoever sets the amount should be guided by a written compensation policy and make the amount comparable to that paid by similar nonprofits.

Your compensation policy should cover:

  • How compensating board members benefits your organization,
  • Which members are eligible, and
  • How compensation is structured (for instance, flat or per-meeting fee).

It should also spell out expectations for board members in exchange for compensation, such as qualifications and meeting attendance.

Document everything

Whether or not your organization ultimately decides to compensate board members, be sure to document all compensation discussions, including any votes your board takes. If you’re still unsure, contact us. We can help walk you through the decision, including how to determine appropriate amounts.

© 2022

 

Life insurance still plays an important role in estate planning | estate planning cpa in baltimore md | Weyrich, Cronin & Sorra

Life insurance still plays an important role in estate planning

Because the federal gift and estate tax exemption amount currently is $12.06 million, fewer people need life insurance to provide their families with the liquidity to pay estate taxes. But life insurance can still play an important part in your estate plan, particularly in conjunction with charitable remainder trusts (CRTs) and other charitable giving strategies.

Home for highly appreciated assets

CRTs are irrevocable trusts that work like this: You contribute property to a CRT during your life or upon your death and the trust makes annual distributions to you or your beneficiary (typically, your spouse) for a specified period of time. When that period ends, the remainder goes to a charity of your choice.

These instruments may be useful when you contribute highly appreciated assets, such as stock or real estate, and want to reduce capital gains tax exposure. Because the CRT is tax-exempt, it can sell the assets and reinvest the proceeds without currently triggering the entire capital gain. Another benefit is that, if you opt to receive annual distributions from your trust, that income stream generally will be taxed at a lower rate than other income using a formula that combines ordinary taxable income, tax-exempt income, capital gains and other rates.

Here’s where life insurance comes in. Because CRT assets eventually go to charity — usually after both you and your spouse have died — you won’t have as much to leave to your children or other heirs. A life insurance policy can replace that “lost” wealth in a tax advantaged way.

Charities as beneficiaries

CRTs are ideal for philanthropically minded individuals. But there are other ways to use life insurance to fund charitable gifts and enjoy tax benefits. You might, for example, transfer your policy to a nonprofit organization and take a charitable income tax deduction (subject to certain limitations) for it. If you continue to pay premiums on the policy after the charity becomes its owner and beneficiary, you can take additional charitable deductions.

Another scenario is to just name a charity as your policy’s beneficiary. Because you retain ownership, you can’t take charitable income tax deductions during your life. But when you die, your estate will be entitled to an estate tax charitable deduction.

Wealth replacement tool

Life insurance can be used to replace wealth in many circumstances — not only when you’re donating to charity. For instance, if you’ve decided to forgo long term care (LTC) insurance and pay any LTC-related expenses (such as home nursing services or care in a nursing facility) out of pocket, you may not have as much to leave your heirs. Life insurance can help ensure that you provide your family with an inheritance.

Multiple benefits

Federal estate tax liability may no longer be a concern if your estate is valued at less than $12.06 million. But, depending on your goals, life insurance can help you make charitable gifts, leave money to your heirs and realize tax advantages. We can explain the types of policies that might be appropriate for estate planning purposes.

© 2022