Although Hoffman had a plan, it was not very efficient.
Philip Seymour Hoffman died with no warning.
Unlike many celebrities, Hoffman at least addressed his own mortality before he died.
He made a will.
Still, according to a recent Wealth Advisor article titled “Posthumous Philip Seymour Hoffman Buzz Reveals: Big Estates Have A Life Of Their Own,” Hoffman could have done better.
As an actor with $35 million in assets, Hoffman should have done this planning.
What was his major pitfall?
His will designated his partner and mother of his children as the heir to his fortune.
They were not married.
As a result, she could not receive the marital deduction.
Instead, his estate will face heavy taxes.
By the time it is inherited by his children, the inheritance will have diminished some 65 percent due to taxes alone.
His children will still see more money than most people will have in their lifetimes, but they could have had more had he created a proactive estate plan or merely married their mother.
You should work with an experienced estate planning attorney if you want to preserve your legacy and set your family up for success.
So, how do you find an "experienced" estate planning attorney?
First, ask around. Friends, family and other professional advisors are trustworthy sources.
Second, conduct an "organic" search on "Google" for "estate planning" near you (e.g., "Estate Planning Anytown MoKan").
Third, either way, verify! Check out the education, experience, ratings and client reviews of any attorney before you contact him or her.
In fact, I use both of these services to thoroughly vett attorneys before referring members of our "client" family for legal help in other areas of law or for matters in jurisdictions outside Kansas or Missouri.
Remember: “An ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure.” When making your financial, tax and estate plans, do not go it alone. Be sure to engage competent professional counsel.
For more information about estate planning in Overland Park, KS (and throughout the rest of Kansas and Missouri), visit our estate planning website and be sure to subscribe to our complimentary estate planning e-newsletter while you are there.
Reference: Wealth Advisor (July 30, 2017) “Posthumous Philip Seymour Hoffman Buzz Reveals: Big Estates Have A Life Of Their Own”