Estate Planning Challenges In The Face Of Uncertainty

The current scheduled changes in the estate and gift tax rates and exemptions have me struggling to come up with some good titles for people with a net worth of $4 to $15 million. How about “midmillionaires,” or “midmills” for short?

political winds are blowing with great uncertainty- especially as the election season heats up. Estate planners in particular find themselves on shifting sands when it comes to reading the tea leaves for their clients.

Who do estate planners think are most susceptible to the legal and tax currents this year? Peter Reilly at Forbes has given them a name: the “midmills,” short for the “midmillionaires.” According to Reilly in his article titled Beating The Possible Estate Tax Increase Without Switching To Cat Food – The Midmill Dilemma, this group of taxpayers has a fairly high net worth- somewhere between $4 and $15 million. So, what kind of estate planning should they pursue? After all, the current exemption amount to the estate tax, which is unified with your lifetime gift exemption, is only set at $5.12 million until December 31, 2012. Unfortunately, next year is uncertain. 

The good news is that Peter Reilly is not one to just acknowledge problems. He’s a census-taker too. Consequently, Reilly has compiled the opinions of various Forbes columnists and has weighed in himself. At least one thing is clear: no one is certain about “Midmill Dilemma.” In the end, the dilemma comes down to you, your risk aversion, and the kinds of assets you have.

Regardless of whether one has a few millions at stake or not, we’re all in the same boat. Proper estate planning is a necessary tool for everyone, even when we’re not sure what Congress will throw at us.

You can learn more about estate planning and elder law issues on our website. Be sure to sign up for our complimentary e-newsletter to stay abreast of issues like these that could affect you, your loved ones and your estate planning.

Reference: Forbes (May 2, 2012) Beating The Possible Estate Tax Increase Without Switching To Cat Food – The Midmill Dilemma

Like this article?

Share on facebook
Share on Facebook
Share on twitter
Share on Twitter
Share on linkedin
Share on Linkdin
Share on pinterest
Share on Pinterest

Leave a comment


We have a LOT more where that came from!

We hate spam too. We will never share or sell your information.

Call Now ButtonCall Us Now https://jsfiddle.net/7h5246b8/

Request a free consultation

We hate spam too. We will never share or sell your information.

We've been putting together as many resources as possible so that we can continue to help:

  • If you’re a current client with a signing appointment or a prospective client with a consultation and would prefer that meeting take place in your own home, we can accomplish that with a little bit of pre-planning on our part and with the addition of a laptop, smartphone, tablet or other computer in your home to facilitate this virtual meeting. For those of you that need to sign legal documents, that too can be accomplished with the use of a webcam (FaceTime etc.), so that we can witness and electronically notarize all of your important legal documents.
  • We launched the rollout of our on-demand webinar early so that new clients and our allied professionals can view the important component parts of ‘an estate plan that works’ at their convenience.  That is available on our website.
  • Live video workshops will be produced as quickly as possible and certainly ahead of our previous schedule; we will keep you posted as these events become available. Given the ‘boutique’ nature of the firm, we rarely have more than ten people in our office including team members at any one time. During this period of ‘social distancing,’ we promise to have no more than 8 people at any time.   This allows us to comply with the Governor’s directive to limit in-person gatherings.
  • The best way to communicate with us is still by phone during regular office hours of 8:30 to 5:00, Monday through Friday, or, you can email any of our team members (that is, their first name followed by @zarembalaw.com).  We will respond to these emails as quickly as possible.
  • Please continue to follow the directives of our local, state, and federal agencies. For your health and in consideration of our team who is assisting you, if you’ve scheduled an office appointment or planned to drop off paperwork and are experiencing a fever, dry cough, or shortness of breath, please contact your primary care doctor for guidance and then our office to reschedule.

Thank you, Walt and the Zaremba Team

Update to our Process

The unprecedented coronavirus pandemic has taken our entire country by surprise. We understand how difficult this time is for America’s businesses and families.  However, we believe it is vitally important that we make every effort possible to continue to offer solutions that avoid disrupting our important partnership with you, your family and friends.  As you know, estate planning is not something that should wait for a more convenient time, therefore the opportunity to address your important goals both during and after this crisis should not wait.  To that end, we have added the option of a ‘virtual consultation’ to our office process.  You will now have a choice of either meeting with us in our office or in the comfort of your own home.