Insights from a Recent Living Trust Case

living trust iowa lawyer

On July 22, 2020, the Iowa Court of Appeals issued a ruling in the matter of the Inman Family Living Trust (No. 19-1045).  Leland and Ella Mae Inman executed the Inman Family Living Trust in 2014.  In 2016, Leland passed away.  The Trust provided that the trustees possessed the powers, rights and discretion set forth in the Iowa Code; that the trustees are authorized to determine fairly and equitably the manner of ascertainment of income and principal and the allocation of all receipts and disbursements to income and principal accounts; and that the Trust shall be governed in accordance with

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Estate Planning in the Covid-19 Crisis

last will and testament covid-19

Estate planning has changed dramatically during the Covid-19 crisis.  The majority of our clients are older individuals who are at a higher risk of being infected with the virus and who have an elevated risk of serious complications from the virus.  Many of our clients are concerned about contracting the virus and have reached out to us about their desires to update their estate planning documents as soon and safely as possible. The challenge facing all estate planning attorneys is how to safely perform estate planning for vulnerable clients in the Covid-19 environment.  From the middle of March to the

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New Iowa Supreme Court Probate Case – Harold Youngblut vs. Leonard Youngblut

probate law case iowa supreme court

On June 12, 2020, the Supreme Court of Iowa issued a decision in the Harold Youngblut vs. Leonard Youngblut case.  The case involves two brothers, Harold and Leonard Youngblut.  Their parent were Earl and Agnes Youngblut.  Earl and Agnes were the parents of twelve children, three of whom predeceased them.  Earl and Agnes formed a corporation, Youngblut Farmland Ltd. in 1980 and transferred most of their farm assets into the corporation with the exception of farm ground in Tama County known as the “South Farm”.  Both Harold and Leonard worked for the corporation until Leonard left in 1988 over a

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Payout of EIP Stimulus Checks to Deceased Individuals

payout of stimulus checks

There has been much discussion among lawyers as to the payment of Economic Impact Payments (EIP) stimulus checks to deceased individuals.  The checks are generally in the amount of $1,200.00 for each taxpayer.  The Internal Revenue Service has recently addressed the issue on the Question and Answer section of its website. The IRS states that a person who died before receipt of the payment does not qualify and the payment should be returned to the IRS.  The entire payment should be returned unless the payment was made to joint filers and one spouse was alive at the time of receipt

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1031 Like Kind Exchange Relief

1031 Like Kind Exchange

Section 1031 of the Internal Revenue Service Code allows a taxpayer to defer recognition of capital gains and related federal income tax liability on the exchange of investment real estate.  The capital gains and related federal income tax liability are deferred to the time that the replacement real estate is sold.  In order to meet the IRS requirements, the seller must use a qualified intermediary to handle the sale of the property and the purchase of the replacement property. A taxpayer has 45 days from the date of sale to identify the replacement property and 180 days from the date

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Information on Protecting Yourself From the COVID-19 Crisis

protection from covid-19 coronavirus

This month’s Blog comes to you at a time when our country is dealing with the COVID-19 crisis.  The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention has issued the following recommendations to protect yourself. Know How it Spreads There is currently no vaccine to prevent coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) The best way to prevent illness is to avoid being exposed to this virus. The virus is thought to spread mainly from person-to-person. Between people who are in close contact with one another (within about 6 feet). Through respiratory droplets produced when an infected person coughs or sneezes. These droplets can land

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Passage of the Secure Act & What it Means to You

On December 20, 2019, the President signed into law the Secure Act.  This article will focus on the key provisions of the new Act. The new Act changes the beginning age for taking required minimum distributions to age 72.  The new law applies to account owners who turn 70½ after the year 2019.  The new Act also repeals the prohibition on contributions to a traditional IRA by an individual who has attained the age of 70½.  Owners of traditional IRA’s can now make contributions past the age of 70½. The new Act also allows taxpayers to withdraw up to $5,000

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Iowa Supreme Court on Gift Restrictions – Tax Insight

laws about digital assets iowa

On November 8, 2019, the Iowa Supreme Court issued an opinion in the Matter of the Application of Coe College for Interpretation of Purported Gift Restriction.  The case involves a gift of seven paintings of Grant Wood in 1976 by the Eppley foundation to Coe College in Cedar Rapids.  The gift letter stated that the paintings would be given to the college “and that this would be their permanent home, hanging on the walls of Stewart Memorial Library”. The college treated the paintings on its books as an unrestricted gift that could be sold or otherwise alienated.  In 2016 an

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Final Regulations on Increased Gift and Estate Tax Exclusion Amounts

The Treasury Department and the Internal Revenue Service issued final regulations on November 22, 2019, confirming that individuals taking advantage of the increased gift and estate tax exclusion amounts in effect from 2018 through 2025 will not be adversely impacted after 2025 when the exclusion amount is scheduled to drop to pre-2018 levels. The final regulations largely adopt the proposed regulations from last year.  The final regulations also contain four examples which illustrate the impact of inflation adjustments.  Individuals who are planning to make large gifts between 2018 and 2025 can make such gifts without concern that they will lose

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Qualified Charitable Distributions Tax Break

iowa tax law charitable donations

Qualified charitable distributions are a valuable tool in reducing taxes.  The deadline for the 2019 year is December 31, 2019.  Qualified charitable distributions are valuable if a person is taking required minimum distributions and also making charitable gifts.  Under the new tax act, most taxpayers are no longer able to itemize deductions, which includes charitable contributions, on the federal return due to the increase in the standard deduction.  As such, many taxpayers are no longer able to deduct their charitable contributions on their federal income tax returns.  A qualified charitable distribution allows an individual who is over the age of

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