Wealth Transfer Under The New Tax Law


Revisit your plan to avoid unintended consequences and take full advantage of a higher exclusion amount.

There is no doubt that a doubled federal estate and gift tax exclusion amount is good news for many high-net-worth families. But this change – enacted as part of the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act – could have unintended consequences on existing wealth transfer plans. For this reason and more, now is a good time for many families to revisit their plans.

To help with this, Suzanne Shier, chief wealth planning and tax strategist at Northern Trust, provides a framework in this three minute video. She also discusses key considerations for wealth transfer plans and examples of what clients are doing under the new law.

A framework for wealth transfer: Questions to ask yourself

  1. Can I give?
  2. Should I give?
  3. When should I give?
  4. How and what should I give? Outright or in trust?

Important considerations under the new tax law

  1. Do not forget about state taxes; state-level estate and inheritance taxes can be significant, and disconnects between federal and state exclusion amounts may exist.
  2. Timing is everything; consider transferring appreciating assets at death to reduce or eliminate income tax liability when the assets are sold.
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This information is not intended to be and should not be treated as legal advice, investment advice or tax advice and is for informational purposes only. Readers, including professionals, should under no circumstances rely upon this information as a substitute for their own research or for obtaining specific legal or tax advice from their own counsel. All information discussed herein is current only as of the date appearing in this material and is subject to change at any time without notice.