contact us

Estate Planning News

Strictly Speaking, When Is a Will Not a Will?

Cite: Eddy R. Smith, Strictly Speaking When Is a Will Not a Will?, TENN. B. J., August 2015. “Close don’t count in baseball. Close only counts in horseshoes and hand grenades.” – Hall of Fame baseball player Frank Robinson[1] When is a will not a will, even when the testator, witnesses and drafting lawyer intend […]
Read More

Can IRA Beneficiaries Trust Creditor Protection Without a Trust?

There are planning options to protect inherited retirement accounts from the beneficiaries’ creditors. Cite: Eddy R. Smith, Can IRA Beneficiaries Trust Creditor Protection Without a Trust?, TENN. B. J., April 2015.   At the end of the third quarter of 2014, an estimated $7.3 trillion was held in Americans’ individual retirement accounts (IRAs), almost 11 […]
Read More

Tennessee Court of Appeals Reinforces Strict Will Execution Requirements

In a will contest case, HPS attorney Ed Smith represented two siblings who argued that their father’s will (which left them nothing) was not properly executed in accordance with the requirements of Tennessee law, because the witnesses to the will signed only the affidavit of attesting witnesses and not the will itself.  The Court of […]
Read More

Marshall Peterson Co-Presenter at KBA seminar, “Advising Clients After DOMA’s Demise”

Marshall Peterson was a co-presenter at the Knoxville Bar Association’s recent Continuing Legal Education seminar entitled “Advising Clients After DOMA’s Demise.”  The recent U.S. Supreme Court decision held that federal treatment of same-sex married couples must correspond to that accorded marriages between opposite sex couples.  Marshall presented what we now know about planning for same-sex couples, […]
Read More

DOMA Overruled: What Does It Mean?

– Contributed by Marshall H. Peterson In response to the Supreme Court’s recent decision against the Defense of Marriage Act (DOMA)[1] the IRS announced on June 27 it will:  “move swiftly to provide revised guidance in the near future.”  No details were provided.
Read More

Estate Planning After the American Taxpayer Relief Act of 2012

-Contributed by Heather K. Craig At cliff’s edge, on New Year’s Day, 2013, Congress passed the “American Taxpayer Relief Act of 2012’’ (“ATRA”), which the President signed the next day.  What’s exciting is that many changes are labeled “permanent,” allowing greater certainty in planning, although, of course, permanence means only whatever future Congresses decide it […]
Read More

January 31 Deadline for 2012 IRA “Charitable Rollovers”

The newly enacted tax law reinstates IRA “qualified charitable distributions” (QCDs) and gives a January-only opportunity to make a QCD retroactive to 2012.  The following is a summary by estate planning lawyer and nationally-known charitable giving authority, Conrad Teitell (used by permission).  Please contact us right away if you would like to discuss this opportunity.
Read More

Certainty At Last – Estate Tax and Gift Tax Legislation Signed on January 2, 2013

At long last, Congress has given us some certainty with respect to the federal wealth transfer taxes, that is, the estate tax, the gift tax, and the generation-skipping transfer (“GST”) tax.  The American Taxpayer Relief Act of 2012 (“ATRA”) provides permanence to the federal wealth transfer tax system for the first time in more than […]
Read More

Tennessee Supreme Court cautions against laypersons using generic will forms

On November 16, 2012, the Tennessee Supreme Court decided In Re Estate of Thomas Grady Chastain.  In Chastain, the Court applied the doctrine of strict compliance in the execution of wills and held that the testator’s signature on the affidavit of attesting witnesses (also known as a “self-proving affidavit”) attached to the testator’s last will […]
Read More

Election results and prospects for federal estate and gift taxes

–Contributed by Ed Smith Election 2012 has come and gone and this much we know:  Barack Obama is President, the Democrats control the Senate, and the Republicans control the House.  In other words, little has changed.  What that means for a host of tax issues remains to be seen, but those holding out hope for […]
Read More
copyright ©2017 Holbrook Peterson Smith PLLC