More often than not, the first professionals that come to mind when we think of estate planning are attorneys....But you’ll be making a huge mistake if you do not involve a CPA in your estate planning process.
Why are CPAs crucial in estate planning, and how can they ensure the smooth transfer of wealth to your beneficiaries? As foremost CPAs, we answer these and more in this post.
Assess your financial situation
CPAs are experts in financial matters and can provide a comprehensive evaluation of your financial situation. They will review your assets, income, expenses, liabilities, and risks. With this assessment, your PA CPA and other professionals can create an estate plan that suits your goals and wishes.
Help reduce taxes
Taxes can eat into a sizable portion of your estate, impacting the amount of wealth you pass down to your heirs. CPAs are tax experts, making them one professional you should have on your side when embarking on estate planning.
They can utilize their knowledge of existing tax laws and recent changes to help you make the right decision, minimizing tax and ensuring the bulk of your estate goes to your loved ones.
Make an accurate financial forecast
Many people fail to start estate planning early because they feel their estate is insignificant. However, a modest estate can appreciate over the years.
CPAs understand finance, valuation, and market trends and can make a near-accurate prediction of whether your estate’s value will appreciate, depreciate, or stay the same in the future. With these predictions, you can make smart decisions to ensure a smooth wealth transfer before it becomes too late.
For example, your PA CPA can recommend gifting to avoid taxes if your estate is likely to exceed the tax exemption limit.
Create business succession plans
If you run a small business, you should have a solid plan highlighting what becomes of your business after you pass away. Do you want the company to be transferred to the child following in your footsteps or sold?
Should the business be split equally among the siblings? Your PA CPA can determine your business worth and work with other professionals to craft an effective succession plan with minimal tax implications.
Assist the executor
The role of an executor comes with overwhelming responsibilities, with some requiring expertise in finances and taxation. Often, with little to no skill, executors are at a wit’s end, with the likely possibility of jeopardizing the efficient transfer of your estate to beneficiaries.
CPAs can work hand in hand with your executor, providing invaluable and practical help filing tax returns, Form 1041, and the like. This will ensure not only a smooth wealth transfer but that your last wishes are carried out to the letter.
Work with PA’s foremost CPAs to develop an estate plan for a seamless wealth transfer
With expertise in finance, taxation, and estate planning, the leading CPAs in Pennsylvania can contribute to an estate plan that results in an efficient wealth transfer and reflects your wishes. Talk to us today.