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How do I get my deceased parents annuity? The annuities are a life insurance product and they have a designated beneficiary. Most of the time, if it was your father’s annuity, he would’ve named your mother and vice versa. And they should designate an alternate beneficiary. But any about that is how you do it. If you’re the designated beneficiary, you have to send the death certificate to the company that issued the annuity or whoever purchased the annuity, and then they will send you the benefits of the annuity or give you any options as far as that’s concerned. So if there is no beneficiary or the beneficiary is deceased, then you must file a probate proceeding in order to obtain the annuity benefits. If you have any questions, give me a call at (727) 847-2288.

 

Video Summary

Do I have to pay the decedent’s credit card bills and medical bills from a joint account which was maintained during his lifetime? And I am the co-owner? The answer is no. Creditors are required to file their claims in a probate proceeding, and if there is no probate proceeding, they have no way to file a claim and no way to recover whatever bills that are owed. This even goes to Medicaid liens. If there are no assets in the decedent’s name, they’re not able to recover these, and you have no responsibility to use the money that was in a joint account to pay the decedent’s bills. The joint accounts are by statute become the asset or the sole owner of the co-owner of the account. So if you have any questions, give a call at (727) 847-2288.

 

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If I name one person as the beneficiary on my 401K account but change my mind and want to designate someone else while writing my Will, will my Will take precedence over the designation of my 401k? The answer is no. A 401K is basically a contract, which has a designated beneficiary on it, and must. And if you’re married, you must name your spouse, and otherwise the provisions of the 401k agreement, our participation agreement, that is drafted or provided to you by your employer, that’s going to control your Will. The Will only controls assets that are just titled in your name alone, so that if there’s a designated beneficiary on a bank account, that’s going to control over your Will. So the assets that are just in your name, are controlled by the Will. All your other assets that have designated beneficiaries are con controlled by contract, so no, your Will will not modify the provisions of your beneficiary of your 401k. If you have any questions, give me a call at (727) 847-2288

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Are my assets protected if I place them in a trust? No. This is a often cited myth that if you transfer your assets into a revocable trust, that you prepare for a state planning purposes, that they’re protected from your creditors. The law is that you, if you control the asset, which you do in a revocable trust, that a creditor could then still reach those assets. So that is not a method by which you can protect your assets. So, if you have any questions about doing that, please give me a call at (727) 847-2288.

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Do I have to pay income tax on the money I received from an estate? The answer is no, you don’t, unless the money that you are receiving was interest, or other income from the sale or generated dividends or from estate assets. So let, if there’s a bank account, in the decedent’s name, I’ll say a hundred thousand dollars, and, and then that’s distributed to you, it’s cash. So there’s no income tax that you have to pay on that money. If there is a piece of real estate involved and the property is then sold, and then you get a portion of the sales proceeds of the from the sale of the real estate again, you don’t have to pay any income tax on it. If the property was sold for the same value as what it was at the time of the decedent died, that’s called a step up in basis, under the probate code. And, what that means is that when someone passes away, the Internal Revenue Service values, the property here says your basis or what you have to pay tax on is based upon the value as of the date of death versus the sales price. So, if the property is sold shortly after someone dies, then there’s not going to be any tax that has to be owed. If the property was not sold shortly after the person dies, it’s many years later, then you need to establish the value as the date of death and then subtract that from the amount that is sold. And then you would have to pay long-term capital gains on a portion of that. Sometimes you may receive dividends from stock that’s in the estate and that’s usually shown to you through a fiduciary tax return. And it’s called a K one. That’s many times offset by the attorney fees and cost. Of course this is, you know, it’s very specific because if you have a very large estate with lots of money coming in, well that would be one thing. Or if it’s a very small estate, then probably you’re not going to wind up having to pay any income tax on this. And the same things go if you get life insurance. You don’t have to pay on the death benefit if you receive some interest that had accumulated on the cash surrender value of the life insurance, well that is taxable income to you. Same thing with annuities that you have to pay tax on that money that you receive. Same thing with IRAs and 401, if you have any questions, give me a call at (727) 847-2288.