Califf & Harper, P.C. attorneys help individuals, including business owners, executives, and highly compensated individuals preserve and protect their assets, provide for the continued well-being of their families, and create a legacy of charitable activities. At the same time, we focus on ways to minimize federal and state taxes. We routinely counsel clients as to traditional wills and trust matters and planning to assure an orderly transfer of family held businesses. Our work in this area includes corporate reorganizations, counseling as to life insurance matters and private foundations and other charitable entities.
Our goal is to work hand in hand with our clients to understand the clients’ objectives and to develop a plan to accomplish each objective. Although we focus on ways to minimize federal estate taxes, we coordinate estate tax savings with our clients’ objectives to develop the best overall plan.
Basic Estate Planning
Our basic estate planning services include preparing appropriate documentation and titling so as to optimize use of both spouses’ federal estate tax exemptions, structuring trusts for children and grandchildren, advising Executors, Trustees and Guardians, preparing appropriate beneficiary designations, working with retirement plans and preparing Wills and Powers of Attorney for Property and for Health Care.
Estate Tax Reduction Techniques
Federal estate taxes may include tax rates that escalate rapidly to a 50% rate. We specialize in various techniques that are available to reduce estate taxes. We explain these techniques to our clients in an understandable manner and we involve our clients as active participants in the development of tax reduction techniques.
We regularly implement the following estate tax reduction techniques for our clients:
Family-Owned and Closely Held Business Planning
Family-owned and other closely held businesses must cope with significant changes in the law that affect thriving enterprises. Business owners must give careful attention to strategic planning, management and ownership, while at the same time ensuring protection for the next generation’s active participation in business. We have a depth of experience in helping family-owned businesses to deal with these issues in practical ways. Our attorneys have acted as business advisors to our clients for a number of years.
Preserving wealth from generation to generation is a primary estate planning objective. Increased litigation, divorce, environmental issues and other potential creditors may damage a client’s net worth substantially. We, therefore, consider asset protection planning to be an important element of estate planning.
Attorneys concentrating in Estate Planning and Wealth Preservation include: