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Grace Advisory Group

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Life insurance and an estate plan may not always mix well

June 5, 2017

A life insurance policy can be an important part of an estate plan. The tax benefits are twofold: The policy can provide a source of wealth for your family income-tax-free, and it can supply funds to pay estate taxes and other expenses. However, if you own your policy, rather than having, for example, an irrevocable…

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Turning next year’s tax refund into cash in your pocket now

June 2, 2017

Each year, millions of taxpayers claim an income tax refund. To be sure, receiving a payment from the IRS for a few thousand dollars can be a pleasant influx of cash. But it means you were essentially giving the government an interest-free loan for close to a year, which isn’t the best use of your…

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Real Estate Investor vs. Professional: Why it Matters

May 17, 2017

Income and losses from investment real estate or rental property are passive by definition — unless you’re a real estate professional. Why does this matter? Passive income may be subject to the 3.8% net investment income tax (NIIT), and passive losses generally are deductible only against passive income, with the excess being carried forward. Of…

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Acquaint yourself with the Roth IRA as an estate planning tool

May 15, 2017

A Roth IRA can be a valuable estate planning tool, offering the opportunity for tax-free growth as long as it exists and requiring no distributions during your life, thus allowing you to pass on a greater amount of wealth to your family. While traditional IRAs are more common, there’s no time like the present to…

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Direct tuition payments benefit your grandchild and your estate plan

April 24, 2017

Grandparents often want to play a role in financing their grandchildren’s education. If you’re one of them, it’s important to consider the impact that different financing options will have on your estate plan. Make direct tuition payments A simple but effective technique is to make tuition payments on behalf of your grandchild. So long as…

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Vacation homes should keep families together, not tear them apart

April 12, 2017

A shared family vacation home can be a great place for family bonding. And a little estate planning can go a long way toward avoiding conflict and keeping the home in the family. Who owns it and how? All family members must understand who actually owns the home. Family members sharing the home will more…

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7 IRA Questions to Ask Before You File Your Tax Return

March 21, 2017

1) Did you make a deductible IRA contribution for 2016? If yes, make sure the deduction is reflected on line 32 of your Form 1040. 2) Did you make a non-deductible IRA contribution for 2016? If yes, make sure the contribution is reported on Form 8606. The contribution will not, however, be reported anywhere on your Form…

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COULD A TAX-FREE EXCHANGE HELP COVER LTC INSURANCE COSTS?

March 16, 2017

No estate plan is complete without considering long-term care (LTC) expenses and how to pay for them. LTC insurance is an option, but these policies can be expensive. One solution is to use a total or partial tax-free exchange of an existing life insurance policy or annuity contract. Reviewing the history For many years, Internal…

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Things to Tell Your Tax Preparer During Tax Season

March 16, 2017

Any time you get a 1099-R for a retirement plan transaction, make sure you give it to your tax preparer. The IRS gets copies of your 1099-Rs, so they need to be included on your income tax return. They cannot be ignored, even if they are for a non-taxable transaction. How will your tax preparer…

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Can You Pass This IRA Beneficiary Quiz?

February 14, 2017

Most people think it is easy to leave an IRA to their heirs. But is it? The following is a quick quiz. How many of these beneficiary questions can you get correct? The answers are at the end of the quiz. Questions 1. The IRA owner has four children. He names the oldest child as…

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