When planning for your estate, one of the biggest issues many families face is the loss in value when funds are transferred from one family member to another. When someone in your family dies, the estate left behind should strengthen your family financially; but without the proper planning, estate taxes and other fees may end up hindering you. It is important to plan ahead and create an estate plan that allows for wealth transferal with lessened wealth reduction.


Each year, every taxpayer is allowed to gift up to $14,000 each to any number of people; tax free. By gifting direct amounts to your beneficiaries each year, you can help provide more financial stability to your family as you see fit. This is very helpful for establishing your estate planning. Additionally, these gifts can be used in a number of ways to benefit your heirs’ financial positioning. Gifts like these can be utilized in ways such as funding a Roth IRA, put down payments on homes, increase deferrals on 401k’s, reduce existing debts, and more.College Funds Separate from gifting, providing funding for educational expenses can be a way to help your children and grandchildren. A 529 College Fund can be a good way to save for and fund a beneficiary’s education. Paying directly for tuition, dorm expenses, books, and the like would also be a way to fund their education, without affecting the $14,000 a year they can be gifted.

Roth IRA

A Roth IRA is an Individual Retirement Account that allows you to save money independently from a 401k from your employer. Once money is placed into the fund, it has a number of tax-free benefits. You can make direct contributions into a child’s or grandchild’s Roth IRA, or name someone as the beneficiary of your Roth. Either allows you to leverage its tax-exemption benefits.

Long Term Care Insurance

Retirees can often be burdened with the high costs of long term care. Long term care insurance works to protect your wishes and assets despite the costs of long term care. The insurance can also provide a fixed cost for long term care, rather than the usually unpredictable ones levied by the institutions themselves. The insurance can help you set up your wealth transferals while still keeping track of the expenses of long term care, and keeping those expenses predictable.Charity and Your Family Charity work and donations are among the greatest legacies you can leave behind. Donating to charity within your estate plan can provide for additional tax breaks that incentivize giving back.

For more than 40 years, our firm has been helping people like you with long term care and estate planning needs. We bring you the knowledge and resources to protect you and your family. Armstrong & Lamberti, PLLC do not provide tax, legal, or accounting advice by articles. This material has been prepared for informational purposes only; and is not intended to provide, and should not be relied upon for, tax, legal or accounting advice. Call 718.477.7700 or contact us online to schedule a free initial consultation with an estate planning attorney at Armstrong & Lamberti, PLLC. We proudly serve Staten Island, Brooklyn and the other boroughs of New York City.