From Old to New: The Basics of Trust Decanting

By WealthCounsel Staff on Dec 18, 2020 10:00:00 AM

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It may seem surprising to use a wine analogy to explain a legal concept, but when discussing trust decanting, pouring wine is often a part of the conversation. When you take a bottle of wine and slowly pour the wine from the bottle into a different container, you are separating the wine from any sediments that may have formed in the bottle. This process is called wine decanting. Decanting ultimately makes the wine taste better as it removes the harsh taste of built-up sediment. Similarly, trust decanting allows a trustee to modify an irrevocable trust by “pouring” the trust assets into a new trust that has different, often more favorable terms. If a trustee has the discretionary power to distribute trust assets to and for the benefit of a beneficiary, decanting enables a trustee to use this power to dictate the terms of a new trust. 

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Proposition 19 Passed in California, Modifying Tax Assessments on Inherited Real Property

By WealthCounsel Staff on Dec 9, 2020 1:27:03 PM

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Proposition 19, a California ballot measure, modifies Proposition 13 (which limits increases of real property tax to two percent per year unless reassessed due to sale or transfer) and Proposition 58 (which allows property owners to transfer their primary residence to their children at the preferential property tax assessment and up to $1 million of assessed value of other real property, with a later proposition extending the benefit to qualifying grandchildren).

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Timely Considerations for the Double Spousal Access Trust

By WealthCounsel Staff on Nov 3, 2020 6:39:53 PM

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Author: James G. Blase, CPA, JD, LLM, Blase & Associates, LLC, St. Louis, Missouri

Many clients are scrambling to implement significant gifting plans and trusts before changes are potentially made to the current estate, gift, and generation-skipping transfer (GST) tax laws by a new Congress and president. Regardless of the outcome of the election, planning will need to take place before 2026, when the current $11.58 million lifetime gift and GST tax exemptions are scheduled to sunset, potentially being reduced to their previous $5 million levels, adjusted for inflation. For many high net worth married couples, the goal is to double the amount of this current gift to up to $23.16 million.

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