Wednesday, December 9, 2015
Steven A. Brand, David L. Freitag, Ron Robinson, and Bruce A. Tannahill recently published an article entitled, Social Security Retirement Benefit Options, Probate & Property Magazine: Volume 29 No. 6 (2015). Provided below is an abstract of the article:
Estate planners often overlook an asset that is important for many clients—their Social Security income. Many reasons may explain this. First, clients do not list Social Security benefits on their balance sheet, and estate planners may not question it because the benefits are not subject to estate tax. Second, federal law and Social Security guidelines govern who receives Social Security benefits. Clients cannot designate who receives Social Security benefits on their earnings record. Third, the rules are complex and require evaluating each situation on its own facts. In addition, estate planning attorneys may not view Social Security planning as an essential part of the estate planning process and may believe that clients will not want to pay an attorney for Social Security guidance.