The sons and daughters of the couple who created Griffin Industries, which the family sold in 2010 for $840 million, are fighting over the massive inheritance left to them by their parents. The legal case was filed by the three daughters who allege that their two oldest brothers conspired to deny them their inheritance, and that the brothers were guilty of racketeering and other charges. Another brother, who was the one that finalized the liquidation of the family's company, was also named. In the dispute, the sisters have also named a holding company created by the brothers as a defendant.
A 63-year-old woman who calls herself an activist for Native Americans was arrested for the theft of close to $320,000 that belonged to a New Jersey senior citizen. The victim of the theft is 93 years of age and requires daily assistance and care. The money represented most of her inheritance received from her late brother's estate.
An adopted girl and her current family got some good news regarding a long running probate dispute. The now teenage girl was adopted by a wealthy family in 1996. Her adoptive father, who made his fortune marketing party goods, died of cancer the following year and left a will which specifically stated that any of his adopted children were to share equally in his estate with any of his biological children. New Jersey readers may take interest in the fact that a court recently upheld the adopted girl's right to an inheritance despite the efforts of her one-time mother to stop it.
Many inheritances are tax free to the recipient. However, New Jersey does have its own inheritance tax law that applies under certain circumstances. Those that are about to receive an inheritance would do well to gain an understanding of any tax issues that may arise in our state, and those that are engaged in estate planning may also wish to consider the potential tax consequences of certain bequests to an heir.
It's no secret that a good number of marriages in New Jersey result in divorce. When the couple has children and one or both spouses remarry, questions inevitably arise concerning the inheritance rights of children from a prior relationship. This can get even more complicated when both parties in a subsequent marriage have children already. One persistent question is what steps should be taken to insure that the inheritance rights of children from a prior relationship are protected?
Many Americans are concerned about the financial implications of the fiscal cliff crisis and what it may mean for their estates in terms of taxes. However, farmers in New Jersey and elsewhere have special cause for concern because of how much they invest in machinery and land. They are concerned that because of the potential increase in inheritance taxes, their farms will have to be sold in the future in order to pay the taxes.
IRAs have long been recognized as an important and beneficial retirement tool in New Jersey. In addition, they offer a valuable vehicle for making an inheritance as well. There are, however, a number of options to minimize potential tax consequences when receiving an IRA as an inheritance.
The age group between 13 and 22 is loosely referred to as Gen Z. As a group, this generation is considered financially savvy, and many have already started with investment accounts and plans to save for college expenses. However, New Jersey readers may be interested to know that when the topic of inheritance is raised, there is a significant difference between some of their views and those of their parents.
We have previously touched on the importance of trusts as a valuable estate planning device in New Jersey. Even with all of the financial difficulties encountered by the great recession and its aftermath, it is expected that the current generation will be in a position to transfer far greater wealth than prior ones. With that in mind, the notion of what constitutes an inheritance has become increasingly creative. One innovative idea focuses on travel trusts.
A word of advice to New Jersey residents: don't forget the attic. That simple estate planning advice could earn a Midwestern family about $3 million, even though it took them over 60 years to realize what their grandfather had left behind. The grandfather, who died in the 1940s, ran a local meat market. The house and its contents eventually went to his two daughters, the last of which died in October, 2011. She left everything to 20 nieces and nephews.