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When dad's 100 and still hasn't transferred assets

Seminars in California locales and elsewhere in the United States occasionally pop up to address centenarians and estate planning.

We reference the impressive "100" number in today's post headline. In doing so, we implicitly acknowledge the number of ever growing entrants on the list of America's oldest people, as well as the implications their age can easily have on family estate planning.

Here's a central question attached to any discussion of the truly aged and the optimal timing for effecting decisions relevant to the transfer of assets: How and when should those assets be passed along to subsequent generations, especially in instances where families command significant wealth?

A recent Forbes article closely considers the query, noting that progressively more people with high-net-worth bottom lines are living to impressively advanced ages and could someday -- owing to next-generation medical enhancements -- live decades beyond what can scarcely be imagined now.

Certainly there's a logical point from which to gauge whether mom or dad has unduly tarried in passing along assets to heirs, so that they can benefit from family wealth and help ensure its proper uses into the future.

Again, that question, though: What is that point? As Forbes notes, "[P]otentially disastrous family confrontations could come forth" if proactive planning is not engaged in while a benefactor still has full faculties and strong ideas concerning family legacy and the transfer of wealth to younger generations.

Forbes duly notes that transferring wealth prior to death is often a very sound idea in wealthy families, since doing so "solves lots of possible problems such as family disputes and lawsuits and assets strangely disappearing."

Every family is different, of course, and effective planning tactics are necessarily tailored in every case. Questions or concerns regarding estate planning in instances of advanced age and high net worth can be candidly discussed with a proven estate planning and tax law attorney who has a deep well of experience assisting diverse clientele implement optimal planning strategies.

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