Category Archives: Estate Planning

Job Change or Retirement? Here is a great reminder checklist

Books get updated and reprinted on a regular basis. This post is from several years back, but worthy of a re-post!

Maybe you are about to Retire… CONGRATULATIONS ! ……Or maybe you are about to change jobs… exciting new times, just around the corner…

Here are a few handy reminders before/as you leave!

Job/Retirement Change ChecklistFinanicial Planning Doc

Grab that Last paycheck– Once you are gone, the internal system may be harder to access, be sure to get your last paycheck downloaded for your tax and personal recordkeeping.

RSU -Options- Grants -Make sure you are not leaving anything on the table via a vesting sunset or time line that can be associated with your departure.

Employee Stock Purchase Plan-Confirm you have control of your stock and transfer it to an easily controlled account-most ESPP plans are only holding tanks and cumbersome to make transactions.

Deferred Comp– Check on when your plan will be paying you your funds- i.e. tax year, time frame, and if all at once or over several series of payments- confirm the payments method and where they will be sent if mailed.

Pension – Get a copy of your latest balance or estimated amount, time frame of payment, if the projection is inclusive of your departure, if your spouse is included as beneficiary and his/her date of birth is correct and MOST IMPORTANTLY your correct address.

Health Coverage– You do not want to go a day without coverage, make sure you have some type of overlap such as Cobra, New company coverage, Medicare or outside personal coverage.

401k– In most instances you want to take control of your old 401k by rolling into a self directed IRA. Make sure your final paycheck withholding has hit your 401k before you roll it over or there will be residual amount later.

New 401k-In most cases you want to allocate your new 401k aggressively- be careful NOT to overfund your old and new plan in the same year- most maximums are $18k (+$6k catch up) – If your two employers do not know about each other they may accidentally allow you to overfund the total afore mentioned amount

Severance– Be sure to get your arms around the type, amount, timing and pay and benefits.

Social Security Withholding – Withholdings may likely be over withheld since your two employers did not know about each other – keep good tax records- if they did, you get a refund.

While mentioned several times, once more due to just how important, be sure to keep your address up to date with your former employer !

Have a great ‘More Organized” Day!

John A. Kvale CFA, CFP

Founder of J.K. Financial, Inc.
A Dallas Texas based fee only
Financial Planning Total Wealth
Management firm.
www.jkfinancialinc.com
www.street-cents.com

Just How Complicated is the Probate Process?

Wandering the airwaves, internet and radio are frequently scary stories of how tough probate can be. While there ARE states that can be very imposing, NY, CA and FL just to mention a few, often times the probate process can be easy and fast.

Complicated Probate Process?

We have personally helped probate double digit numbers of Estates and in several cases, actually stood in for the Executor due to geographic challenges, or other restrictive problems with showing up in person at the Court house.

This is an actual picture of the Probate Court from earlier this year …. where we were present Probating a Will.

Items to remember:

20170125_200814794_ios

  • Not usually complicated- some states can be
  • Probate needed for real estate, non beneficiary titled accounts or ownership
  • Creates a Letter of Testamentary
  • Multiple or Joint Executors can complicate 
  • Not all Estates have to be probated
  • Inventory of assets may be needed
  • Effectively closes the Estate

 

One of the most crucial items for Probate to go smoothly, is organization up front.

Be sure to have good working and updated Estate Documents … and Probate should not be the nightmare many try to scare us into believing.!

Have a Great Day!

John A. Kvale CFA, CFP

Founder of J.K. Financial, Inc.
A Dallas Texas based fee only
Financial Planning Total Wealth
Management firm.
www.jkfinancialinc.com
www.street-cents.com

Job Change or Retirement? Here is a great reminder checklist

Maybe you are about to Retire… CONGRATULATIONS ! ……Or maybe you are about to change jobs… exciting new times, just around the corner…

Here are a few handy reminders before/as you leave!

Job/Retirement Change ChecklistFinanicial Planning Doc

Grab that Last paycheck– Once you are gone, the internal system may be harder to access, be sure to get your last paycheck downloaded for your tax and personal recordkeeping.

RSU -Options- Grants -Make sure you are not leaving anything on the table via a vesting sunset or time line that can be associated with your departure.

Employee Stock Purchase Plan-Confirm you have control of your stock and transfer it to an easily controlled account-most ESPP plans are only holding tanks and cumbersome to make transactions.

Deferred Comp– Check on when your plan will be paying you your funds- i.e. tax year, time frame, and if all at once or over several series of payments- confirm the payments method and where they will be sent if mailed.

Pension – Get a copy of your latest balance or estimated amount, time frame of payment, if the projection is inclusive of your departure, if your spouse is included as beneficiary and his/her date of birth is correct and MOST IMPORTANTLY your correct address.

Health Coverage– You do not want to go a day without coverage, make sure you have some type of overlap such as Cobra, New company coverage, Medicare or outside personal coverage.

401k– In most instances you want to take control of your old 401k by rolling into a self directed IRA. Make sure your final paycheck withholding has hit your 401k before you roll it over or there will be residual amount later.

New 401k-In most cases you want to allocate your new 401k aggressively- be careful NOT to overfund your old and new plan in the same year- most maximums are $18k (+$6k catch up) – If your two employers do not know about each other they may accidentally allow you to overfund the total afore mentioned amount

Severance– Be sure to get your arms around the type, amount, timing and pay and benefits.

Social Security Withholding – Withholdings may likely be over withheld since your two employers did not know about each other – keep good tax records- if they did, you get a refund.

While mentioned several times, once more due to just how important, be sure to keep your address up to date with your former employer !

Have a great ‘More Organized” Day!

John A. Kvale CFA, CFP

Founder of J.K. Financial, Inc.
A Dallas Texas based fee only
Financial Planning Total Wealth
Management firm.
www.jkfinancialinc.com
www.street-cents.com

Coming Soon ANOTHER Sizzling New Vault Feature – Estate Planning Flow Chart (Clients)

In our final sizzle feature (most likely) for this year (16) for our New Total Vault, we wanted to wet your appetite and let you know this feature is available and will be rolled out slowly due to the complexity.

Estate Planning Flow Chart

We get the Wills complete, the Trusts are set up, the beneficiaries appointed, and the decisions made. Then we stick all those fancy documents in our New Total Vault and the originals in our safe place…and…. well …. we forget what we set up !

NOT ANY MORE !

Your New Total Vault has not only an Estate Planning Flow Chart, but an all inclusive calculator and estimator.

Check this out:

Easy to visualize — once set up, can be created with live information at the click of a mouse!

Flow Chart for Estate Planning

Here is the calculation section:

Estate Flow Chart Calculations

 

Our Goal is to have this up and running for everyone as we review our Estate Planning Documents… Lofty… yep…just a step for steppers!

If you have  a desire to complete this early,  just let us know, we will move you to the top of the working group !

Have a Super Day!

John A. Kvale CFA, CFP

Founder of J.K. Financial, Inc.
A Dallas Texas based fee only
Financial Planning Total Wealth
Management firm.
www.jkfinancialinc.com
www.street-cents.com

 

June 2016 Video, Planning Tip-Economic and Capital Market Monthly Review, By John Kvale

We are at the half way point of the year. In this review of the year so far and preview of the remainder, we look longer than our regular month for sentimental and digital diary reasons!

Here is our  June 2016, Extended view – Economic and Capital Market Review, with a great financial planning tip, and of course our Video for your viewing and listening pleasure.

Hope you enjoy!

June 2016 Video

 

Financial Planning Tip –

Estate Planning Docs In One Box

After discovering we DID NOT have a comprehensive high level Estate Planning article, a two-part series was happily created – for the record more articles similar to this are expected due to their popularity and handy reference ability:

ESTATE PLANNING DOCS

Will – Document that directs non-beneficiary directed assets (Ex ..house, property, cash and regular investment assets) and may create trusts for minors, names a Custodian, Executor and may also create trusts and Trustees for estate tax minimization and other uses (see final statement in article below on Trusts.)

Power of Attorney– Financial document that appoints someone other than you to make most financial decisions in your absence. .

Healthcare Power of Attorney – Document that appoints someone to make important healthcare decisions if you are unable.

HIPPA – Allows your appointed person to receive medical information on your behalf.

Living Will- Cease and Decease – DNR – These titles are one in the same and are frequently confusing. This document allows medical professionals to NOT mandate all possible care, should you become deceased mentally, but not in body function.

Estate Planning Docs Part Two – Trusts

TRUSTS – ALL TYPE REVIEW

Revocable Trust – By far the most common and most commonly misunderstood Trust of the bunch. Revocable means it can be changed at the grantors request.

Testamentary Trust – Trust that is usually embedded in a Will and is created upon the grantors death.

Irrevocable Trust – The Hulk of Trusts. Being Irrevocable, once established and funded, this Trust is a beast. Estate tax, liability, inheritance are just a few items that can be addressed with an Irrevocable Trust.

QTIP Trust : Qualified Terminal Interest Trust – Most common set up by Grantor to give direction to assets beyond the spouse.

Credit Shelter/A:B Trust – Type of trust that is used to help minimize Estate taxes by maximizing the first person in a married couples Estate tax exemption upon death commonly resides in a Will.

GST or Generation Skipping Trust – This handy estate planning trust gives relief to Grantors by jumping a generation and essentially skipping the Grantors children and passing to the grandchildren.

ILIT : Irrevocable Life Insurance Trust – This trust is very useful in getting life insurance proceeds out of a Grantors estate.

Here is a link to the original detailed post.

Economic Update

Brexit changes our view on rates

With the British vote to exit the European Union, the Federal Open Market Committee (FOMC) lead by chair Janet Yellen will be hard pressed to raise rates. The only reason we can see higher rates sooner rather than later now would be some (multiple reports needed) major inflationary factors that feed through to the economic reports- While big advocates of higher rates and our research shows rates have been raised during an election year, it’s likely off the table for the remainder of the year.

Brexit changes US Presidential Election

Brexit may also change the US Presidential election as the polls of the British were so far from accurate, we expect many to have less confidence in our current US Presidential polls.

Capital Markets Update

New all time high?

With the afore-mentioned rate increase off the table and possible international perceived disruption due to Brexit – US capital markets  may be the recipient of fresh capital from global corners of the world.

New highs (S&P 500) would not surprise us at this time and the odds are now better than not from our perch. Minor expansion in Bunny like fashion (explanation to come upon occurrence) looks possible, of course twists and turns have been the norm lately.

7-5-16 SP 500

Earnings are the ultimate driver of equity prices, and US capital markets are currently frothy if not overpriced.  We think they can get more overpriced due to the above concerns.

7-1-16 PE Ratio SP 500

 Long term average is 15!

Have a Great Day!

See you again at the end of July !

John A. Kvale

Founder of J.K. Financial, Inc.
A Dallas Texas based fee only
Financial Planning Total Wealth
Management firm.
www.jkfinancialinc.com
www.street-cents.com
JK Street Cents Logo

 

 

Estate Planning Docs Part Two – Trusts

Trusts, in our opinion are most helpful for organization, directives for minors, and very useful in avoiding Estate Taxes, just to name a few.

Estate Tax Review

Estate taxes are the tax that is incurred upon the final death of an estate member. Unlike Federal taxes, Estate taxes are accessed on the TOTAL VALUE of all assets less liabilities. Currently these taxes begin just under $5.5 million for a single person and if done correctly can be double ($11 million total) for married couples. Above these total amounts, the tax rate quickly gets to 40%. For this reason, the popularity and needs of many of the following Trusts have grown and will continue.

Trusts – All Type ReviewLivingTrustEstatePic

Over the last several years we have grown warmer to the use of Trusts. Residing in Texas, a low cost probate state, Trusts frequently have lessor place in the Estate plan. However, we are finding more and more uses for them, and as such wanted to have a detailed list of the various Trusts – This is the second, and more deep dive to our original Estate Planning Doc Summary.

Revocable Trust – By far the most common and most commonly misunderstood Trust of the bunch. Revocable means it can be changed at the grantors request. Due to this fact, there is very little tax or liability avoidance. The key positive for this trust is organization, especially over state borders. In high probate cost states may prevent substantial probate costs.

Testamentary Trust – Trust that is usually embedded in a Will and is created upon the grantors death. Testamentary trusts can take many forms, but are a key aspect of Estate planning for minors, estate tax, and generational transfers. It has virtually no existence until the grantor passes away.

Irrevocable Trust – The Hulk of Trusts. Being Irrevocable, once established and funded, this Trust is a beast. Estate tax, liability, inheritance are just a few items that can be addressed with an Irrevocable Trust. The biggest issue of this type of trust is it what makes it a beast, Irrevocable … once you put assets in it, there is no turning back. Careful use is advised.

QTIP Trust : Qualified Terminal Interest Trust – Most common set up by Grantor to give direction to assets beyond the spouse. Frequently used in second marriages to protect children from a prior marriage. Created and resides most frequently in a Will.

Credit Shelter/A:B Trust – Type of trust that is used to help minimize Estate taxes by maximizing the first person in a married couples Estate tax exemption upon death commonly resides in a Will. Can give directives to eventually end up to a non-spouse beneficiary, but living spouse maintains control during lifetime.

GST or Generation Skipping Trust – This handy estate planning trust gives relief to Grantors by jumping a generation and essentially skipping the Grantors children and passing to the grandchildren. Income may be distributed to the children, but the ultimate beneficiary will be the grandchildren. Under current law there is Estate tax relief from this trust.

ILIT : Irrevocable Life Insurance Trust – This trust is very useful in getting life insurance proceeds out of a Grantors estate. While life insurance is free from Federal taxes in most cases, proceeds are included in an Estate for Total Estate Tax purposes. Done correctly, the ILIT trust can limit most if not all of the proceeds from an estate and thereby estate taxes.

Pat yourself on the back (especially if you are still awake and made it this far.) With a reasonable understanding of these types of trusts, you now have deep knowledge of the types of Trusts available. Reach out if you have any questions.

Have a Great Day!

John A. Kvale CFA, CFP

Founder of J.K. Financial, Inc.
A Dallas Texas based fee only
Financial Planning Total Wealth
Management firm.
www.jkfinancialinc.com
www.street-cents.com

 

How does someone with a $300 million net worth NOT have a Will?

Recently, a famous musician, especially popular in my generation, passed away suddenly at the very young age of 57. While very fond of his music, his planning was disappointing.

Not only will he be missed, but his lack of a basic planning tool, may lead to many terrible outcomes.

No Will ?

It is estimated the Prince’s net worth is near $300 million. Certainly he had been advised to create an Estate Plan with the appropriate documents to help ensure a fluid transition, should he pass.

For whatever reason, by Prince not having a Will, his estate may have some of the following challenges.

  • Unknown spirit of wishes – The courts will decide who gets what, rarely a desirable outcome.
  • Massive extra expenses – While the courts decide who gets what, the extra avoidable expenses are certain to mount.
  • Delay – It would not be surprising to us for it to take a decade (yes, 10 years or more) to completely settle the estate.
  • Friends/relatives come running- Just as a lottery winner finds she has many new friends and unknown relative, $300 million will certainly draw attention and confusion.
  • Taxes- Prince’s estate will be subject to multiple levels of taxes, not all would have been avoided, but without any planning, the federal government stands to receive much more than otherwise would have been necessary.

It will be interesting to find out why Prince chose not to have any plans….heck, we may never know. No matter, while his music has left a legacy, his mistake certainly can teach us all an easy lesson!

Have a Great Day!

John A. Kvale CFA, CFP

Founder of J.K. Financial, Inc.
A Dallas Texas based fee only
Financial Planning Total Wealth
Management firm.
www.jkfinancialinc.com
www.street-cents.com