Articles Posted in Trust

Basic Trust Taxation Rules It is estimated that $4.8 trillion in wealth will be inherited or transferred from one generation to the next by 2015, with much of it transferred through a variety of trusts. Filings of trust returns (Form 1041) are now the third most frequently filed income tax return behind individual and corporate returns. Although the vast majority of these transfers are legal, there is widespread potential for fraud.In the last few years, the Internal Revenue Service has detected a proliferation of abusive trust tax evasion schemes. These promotions are targeted towards wealthy individuals, small business owners, and professionals such as doctors and lawyers.Abusive trust arrangements typically are promoted by the promise of such benefits as:

  • Reduction or elimination of income subject to tax.
  • Deductions for personal expenses paid by the trust.

Linked trusts were eligible to be S shareholders PLR 200912005

Mike Habib, EA Tax Relief & Tax Resolution Services

IRS has privately ruled that a trust having a second trust as a remainder beneficiary could choose to be treated as an electing small business trust (ESBT) and thus was eligible to be a shareholder of an S corporation. IRS also concluded that the second trust was not a charitable remainder trust. As a result, the second trust will be eligible to be treated as an ESBT when it becomes a potential current beneficiary of the first trust.

Estate not taxed on transfer of decedent’s pension to charitable beneficiary PLR 200845029

IRS has privately ruled that an estate will not be taxed on a distribution of the decedent’s pension benefits to a charitable beneficiary of the estate.

Facts. An individual, whom we’ll call, Smith, died owning an interest in a defined benefit pension plan (the Plan Interest) of which his estate (Estate) was the beneficiary. His will (Will) named Charity as a residuary beneficiary. The executor of Estate proposes to assign the benefit of the Plan Interest to Charity in partial satisfaction of Charity’s share of the residue. The Will gave the executor the power to distribute property in kind and state law further allows distributions in kind without any requirement that they be made on a pro-rata basis.

Tiered discount allowed in real estate FLP gift tax case In Astleford, a memorandum decision, the Tax Court permitted a taxpayer to apply a tiered discount in the context of a family limited partnership owning interests in real estate.

Facts. On 8/1/96, Mrs. Astleford formed the Astleford Family Limited Partnership (“AFLP”) to facilitate the continued ownership, development, and management of various real estate investments and partnership interests she owned and to facilitate gifts that she intended to make to her three adult children. On the same day, Mrs. Astleford transferred to AFLP ownership of an elder care facility. Also on the same day, Mrs. Astleford gave each of her three children a 30% limited partner interest in AFLP and retained for herself a 10% general partner interest.

On 12/1/97, Mrs. Astleford made additional capital contributions to AFLP by transferring to AFLP a 50% interest in Pine Bend Development Co. (“Pine Bend”), a general partnership, and her interest in 14 other real estate properties. The Pine Bend general partnership agreement did not contain any provisions relating to the transfers of interests in Pine Bend or whether such transferred interests would be general partner or assignee interests. Pine Bend owned 3,000 acres of land of which 1,187 acres consisted of agricultural farmland (“Rosemount property”).

Charitable remainder trust can be divided into separate trusts without adverse tax consequences Rev Rul 2008-41, 2008-30 IRB Mike Habib, EA

In the context of two fairly detailed factual situations, a new revenue ruling makes it clear that a charitable remainder trust (CRT) can be divided into two or more separate CRTs without adverse tax consequences. If properly effected, the separate trusts will continue to qualify as CRTs, the division won’t be a sale, and no excise taxes will arise under Code Sec. 507(c), Code Sec. 4941 or Code Sec. 4945.

Background. In general, a charitable remainder trust (CRT) provides for a specified periodic distribution to one or more noncharitable beneficiaries for life or for a term of years with an irrevocable remainder interest held for the benefit of charity. A CRUT pays a unitrust amount at least annually to the beneficiaries as opposed to a charitable remainder annuity trust or CRAT, which pays a sum certain at least annually to the beneficiaries. (Code Sec. 664)

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