As 2017 winds down and the holiday season ramps up, don’t miss the opportunity to review a few key items that may benefit you heading into the new year. It’s always a good idea to check in with your accountant to see if there are any last-minute income tax strategies, expenses or deductions that need to be in place before year-end that may reduce your tax liabilities. Be sure to discuss with your accountant any required minimum distributions you must take from any IRA, 401(k) or other qualified retirement plan (or from any inherited qualified retirement plan or IRA).
You may also consider making gifts prior to the end of the year. That may include making gifts to individuals, education accounts such as 529 plans or gifts to charities. However, if you’ve done any irrevocable trust planning to protect assets from the nursing home (what we in our office often call a “lockbox”), you’ll want to consult with your trusted advisors before making any gifts. For our clients with this type of planning in place, consider this a friendly reminder to please call our office before donating to charity, making any gifts or making payments on behalf of another.
One continued trend we’ve seen over the last few decades is rules around protecting assets from the nursing home becoming stricter. As we head into a new year, we recommend that those who have delayed in planning to protect the home or other assets from nursing home expenses schedule an appointment with their estate or elder law planning attorney. We anticipate stricter rules will continue to make it more difficult to protect these assets. Don’t wait! The sooner you can begin to plan, the better.
We hope you have found our blogs for 2017 informative and helpful! Our team has worked diligently to prepare topics we think will be helpful for our colleagues and clients for 2018. We wish you and your family a happy holiday season and all the best for the New Year!