Estate

Parents need to do estate planning

Posted on Aug 18, 2017

For a parent, estate planning is especially important. The first priority is to make sure your children are protected in the event that something happens to you. Your estate plan should appoint guardians for your minor children, as well as provide for their financial well-being. Gilliland & Associates, PC is a full-service CPA firm specializing in tax planning for individuals and businesses in the Northern Virginia area. We are based in Falls Church, VA and also service clients in McLean and Tysons Corner, VA. Gilliland & Associates is known for our superior knowledge and aggressive interpretation and application of tax laws. We help you keep more of your earnings by finding you the lowest possible tax on your business or personal tax return. You can connect with us on Google+, LinkedIn, Facebook, and...

Read More

FINANCES AFTER THE DEATH OF A LOVED ONE

Posted on Jun 22, 2017

The last thing you want to be bothered with when you are grieving is sorting out the finances of your departed loved one. Here are some suggestions to make the process a little easier. Prioritize. Focus on the most pressing tasks you face. Make sure you have access to the right accounts in order to secure living expenses for yourself and any people the departed person supported. Close any of their outstanding debts. Gather documents. Get at least a dozen copies of the death certificate. Insurance companies, government agencies, creditors, and banks will require a copy before they share the departed person’s financial information. Having the person’s financial information ready (including a will, insurance policies and retirement plans) will make the process easier. Notify others. You will need to notify several agencies, institutions and companies of the death. These include the Social Security Administration, the deceased person’s employer, insurance companies, credit bureaus, credit card companies, the post office, utility companies, and creditors. Take time where you can. Some financial issues can wait. Insurance proceeds and inherited assets can remain where they are for six months to a year. When dealing with intense grief, many people make hasty financial decisions they later regret. Make sure you take time to process your grief and address important financial decisions with a clear head. Get professional help. If your loved one has not named an executor of his or her estate, you may be faced with meeting this obligation. If he or she died without a will, each state has laws that affect the settlement process, and it’s probably not something you should tackle on your own. Tax returns may need to be filed, and the tax basis of assets at time of death may need to be established. Working with a financial professional will help you navigate the process and minimize your hassle during a difficult time. Gilliland & Associates, PC is a full-service CPA firm specializing in tax planning for individuals and businesses in the Northern Virginia area. We are based in Falls Church, VA and also service clients in McLean and Tysons Corner, VA. Gilliland & Associates is known for our superior knowledge and aggressive interpretation and application of tax laws. We help you keep more of your earnings by finding you the lowest possible tax on your business or personal tax return. You can connect with us on Google+, LinkedIn, Facebook, and...

Read More

Tax filing responsibilities of estate executors

Posted on May 23, 2017

Your role as an executor or personal administrator of an estate involves a number of responsibilities. Did you know that part of your responsibility involves making sure the necessary tax returns are filed? And there might be more of those than you expect. Here’s an overview: Personal income tax. You may need to file a federal income tax return for the decedent for the prior year as well as the year of death. Both are due by April 15 of the following year, even if the amount of time covered is less than a full year. You can request a six-month extension if you need additional time to gather information. Gift tax. If the individual whose estate you’re administering made gifts in excess of the annual exclusion ($14,000 per person for 2017), a gift tax payment may be required. Form 709, United States Gift (and Generation-Skipping Transfer) Tax Return, is due April 15 of the year following the gift. The filing date can be extended six months. Estate income tax. Income earned after death, such as interest on estate assets, is reported on Form 1041, Income Tax Return for Estates and Trusts. You’ll generally need to file if the estate’s gross income is $600 or more, or if any beneficiary is a nonresident alien. For estates with a December 31 year-end, Form 1041 is due April 15 of the following year. Estate tax. An estate tax return, Form 706, United States Estate (and Generation-Skipping Transfer) Tax Return, is required when the fair market value of all estate assets exceeds $5,490,000 (in 2017). One thing to watch for: Spouses can transfer unused portions of the $5,490,000 exemption to each other. This is called the “portability” election. To benefit, you will need to file Form 706 when the total value of the estate is lower than the exemption. Form 706 is due nine months after the date of death. You can request a six-month extension of time to file. Give us a call if you need more information about administering an estate. We’re here to help make your task less stressful. Gilliland & Associates, PC is a full-service CPA firm specializing in tax planning for individuals and businesses in the Northern Virginia area. We are based in Falls Church, VA and also service clients in McLean and Tysons Corner, VA. Gilliland & Associates is known for our superior knowledge and aggressive interpretation and application of tax laws. We help you keep more of your earnings by finding you the lowest possible tax on your business or personal tax return. You can connect with us on Google+, LinkedIn, Facebook, and...

Read More