No one wants to think about estate planning but taking the time to plan will ensure your financial wishes are carried out while easing the burden on your loved ones.

What is an Estate Plan?

An estate plan documents what will happen to your assets such as bank accounts, property, and vehicles when you die. It is more detailed than a will because it covers trusts, power of attorney, your living will, and more. An attorney, financial planner or an accountant can help you create this document.

Estate Tax Planning

When your estate plan is carried out, you don’t have to worry about leaving your loved ones with a large tax burden. As of 2019, estates valued at less than $11.14 million are not subject to taxation before they are bequeathed to your heirs. In addition, North Carolina does not impose state taxes on inheritance and inherited funds are not subject to federal taxes.

Despite these rules, it does not mean that your loved ones will not have to pay any taxes on the assets you leave them. It does mean that the large tax bills many people fear are not likely to apply. Any income generated by an inheritance is taxable and any capital gains from property sales can also be taxed.

Establishing a Trust

A trust is an agreement that allows a third party (called a trustee) to hold assets on behalf of your beneficiaries. Many people establish a trust because they can detail exactly how and when their heirs receive their assets. When a trust is established, it also allows assets to be passed on quicker and can help to reduce the tax burden on your heirs. While an attorney typically helps people establish a trust, it is also a good idea to have a Durham accountant on hand as well.

Why Choose Us?

Steward Ingram & Cooper PLLC has more than 20 years of experience in handling estate tax and estate planning. Our CPAs will take the time to understand your financial situation and help advise you with your estate planning. We can also help trustees navigate through tax laws. Getting professional advice is important to ensure you are not subject to any tax penalties. With CPA Firms in Durham and Raleigh, we serve all of the Triangle area including Cary, Chapel Hill, Apex, Garner, Wake Forest, and Wilson.