Making the law work for you
Ensure that your estate is properly distributed to your heirs. Planning for this is important because if you don't decide what should be done with your possessions ahead of time, the state has the right to distribute it in a way that may not be the best for your family. If minors inherit property, a court proceeding is then required to have a judge appoint a guardian to protect and administer the minors' inheritance.
Federal estate tax no longer affects most families because the threshold for taxation is an estate that exceeds
$5,340,000 in 2014 indexed for inflation.
Inheritance tax has no minimum size of estate, applying to an estate of any size. Tax planning for estates is important because PA estate tax applies to any size estate in PA. There is no protection for small estates from this tax.
Many people who die with a will assume that probate is required. In PA, many estates with a will can avoid probate.
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