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August 2013 Archives

IRS tells Michael Jackson's estate to pay up

Many people in California know firsthand how difficult it is to deal with the Internal Revenue Service. Especially at the time of a loved one's death -- when taxes are the last thing you want to think about -- the IRS has a way of finding ways to get the most out of the estate. One way this can happen is if the IRS disagrees with your valuation of the estate. Today, this issue has been made abundantly clear in a tax dispute involving Michael Jackson's estate.

Study says boomers donate most: How trusts can help you give more

A recent study of the giving habits of the four major generations showed that baby boomers are the most philanthropic. Although baby boomers only make up 34 percent of the people who give to charitable causes, they are reponsible for contributing 43 percent of the total amount donated. In total, boomers give nearly $62 million each year.

California business investors facing tax bill after court ruling

According to a California law that was enacted five years ago, people who wanted to invest in small businesses in our state could get a tax break. With that incentive, many people chose to invest their money in promising companies across our state. The benefits of this law are clear. Small-businesses can increase their chances of succeeding in a competitive state, and investors are rewarded through tax breaks for supporting them. Unfortunately, the state is now telling these investors to pay up.

QPRTs less of a factor for avoiding estate taxes today

When any California resident begins to consider estate planning, there are many factor to think about. For a long time, protecting an estate from estate taxes has been a major priority for many Californians. As the federal government has changed the exclusion levels over the years, people have adjusted their estate planning accordingly. Many people put money or property in trusts to lower the worth of estate so their heirs wouldn't get taxed.

How the IRS is even worse for same-sex couples

Nobody in California -- or anywhere else, for that matter -- enjoys working with the Internal Revenue Service. Filing taxes is complicated, and hearing from the IRS after the fact is rarely a good thing unless they're giving you money back. With the recent changes in laws regarding same-sex marriage, however, the LGBT community may be the IRS's biggest foe. 

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