At the end of 2016, New Jersey lawmakers passed a bill that would raise the state estate tax exemption by a hefty amount. The exemption prior to Jan. 2, 2018 is only $675,000. While over half a million dollars sounds like a lot to most families, when you add in the value of homes, retirement investments and other assets, it's easier to hit that total than you might think. In 2014, over 3,000 estate tax returns were filed, for example.
How many times have your children asked for a treat or toy at the store when you've had to say "No" because you barely had enough money for the groceries in your cart? You are certainly not the first parent in Brunswick to face serious financial trouble. The question is: How do you tell your kids? (Or, should you?)
It's the beginning of a new year, which means everyone is rushing to the gym or the health food store to try to get a head start on goals. In many cases, those goals will be abandoned by this time in February, but you can set some long-term financial and estate planning goals that are easier to keep -- especially if you cement them now with the help of an estate law professional.