Gassman, Crotty & Denicolo, P.A.
Attorneys At Law | 727.442.1200 | agassman@gassmanpa.com

The
Thursday Report
05.04.2017

Re:  Super-cali-fragilistic-expi-ali-TRUMPTAX

Trump Tax Proposal-Tea Leaves by Brandon Ketron

The Asset Protection Continuum (pt. 1 of 3) by Martin Shenkman & Alan Gassman

An Interview with Dr. John Barrett of the Barrett Family Foundation

8 Tips to Control Your Staffing Costs by David Finkel

Richard Connolly’s World – Wills Can Avert Family Warfare, but Have Their Own Hidden Traps

Thoughtful Corner

Humor! (Or Lack Thereof!)

We welcome contributions for future Thursday Report topics. If you are interested in making a contribution as a guest writer, please email Alan at agassman@gassmanpa.com.

 

This report and other Thursday Reports can be found on our website at www.gassmanlaw.com.

 

 

  Quote of the Week

“First of all, I would like to make one thing quite clear.  I never explain anything.”
– Mary Poppins (President Trump may have taken this too much to heart)

President Trump’s press conference showed that he is moving forward with his tax reform platform from the election campaign.  We also learned that he is giving few details, at present, about how he is going to implement this ambitious plan.  With that in mind, we thought that we would see what the pieces of the clouded puzzle look like, and what better way to examine it than a whimsical look through the eyes of those guys in Orlando.  With that, we bring you Super-cali-fragilistic-expi-ali-TRUMPTAX.

Trump’s Proposed Tax Plan – Tea Leaves

by Brandon Ketron

In Wednesday’s press conference, the Trump Administration unveiled their plan for tax reform.  This plan is very similar to the plan that Donald Trump presented during the 2016 election campaign.  As the Wall Street Journal pointed out the plan is “heavy on ambition, [and] light on technical detail…”

Here are the highlights taken in part from the press release the Trump Administration handed out at Wednesday’s announcement:

Individual Reform

  1. Reducing the 7 tax brackets to 3 tax brackets of 10%, 25%, and 35%.

This reduces the top marginal rate to 35% from the current top marginal rate of 39.6%.  In Donald Trump’s tax plan released for the 2016 election campaign, the top marginal rate was 33%.

The proposal did not specify the income amount that would apply for each tax bracket.

  1. Doubling the standard deduction. 
  1. Protect the home ownership and charitable gift tax deductions. 

 The proposal eliminates all itemized deductions except for the mortgage interest deduction and the charitable deduction. One study during the election campaign stated that only 5% of taxpayers will itemize due to the fact that they will receive a higher deduction by simply claiming the standard deduction.  One of Trump’s major goals for tax reform is to simplify the tax code, and this appears to be one of those simplifications.

  1. Providing tax relief for families with child and dependent care expenses. 

It is unclear if this will be in the form of a deduction or a credit.

  1. Repeal the Alternative Minimum Tax (AMT Tax). 
  1. Repeal the 3.8% Obamacare tax that hits small businesses and investment income. 

This is also known as the Net Investment Income Tax, and imposes a tax on single taxpayers with income exceeding $200,000, or married taxpayers with income exceeding $250,000, on the taxpayer’s net investment income.

The 3.8% Net Investment Income Tax applies to most capital gain transactions, therefore the top marginal capital gains rate would effectively be reduced from 23.8% to 20%.

  1. Repeal the Death Tax. 

These four words were all of the guidance that was given on the potential repeal of the Estate Tax.  It is not clear whether this proposal will provide for a carryover basis regime or for a capital gains tax to be assessed on death with respect to assets that exceed a certain amount.

Further it is not clear whether the gift tax would be repealed along with the estate tax if this proposal becomes law.

There have been a few House and Senate bills on tax reform that have included a repeal of the estate tax; however none of the bills have made it out of committee to this point.  Edwin Morrow recently published an excellent article highlighting each of these proposed bills that can be viewed by going to

http://leimbergservices.com/openfile.cfm?filename=d%3A%5Cinetpub%5Cwwwroot%5Call%5Clis%5Fnotw%5F2516%2Ehtml&criteria=morrow

  1. Eliminate targeted tax breaks that mainly benefit the wealthiest taxpayers.

 Little guidance was given on this, so it is unclear at this point what tax breaks the Trump Administration is referring to.    

 

Business Reform

  1. 15% Business Tax Rate.

The proposal lowers the current corporate tax rate from 35% to 15%.  Additionally, the tax rate on pass-thru business income would be limited to 15%, as opposed to the top individual rate of 35%.    This provides a huge (pronounced “yuuuge”) tax break for corporations and for owners of pass through entities.

  1. Territorial tax system to level the playing field for American companies. 

 Under current law, U.S. companies pay tax on profits that are brought into the United States, regardless of where that income is earned.

 The proposal calls for a switch to a territorial tax system where U.S. companies would only owe tax on income earned in the United States [IS THIS THE OPPOSITE OF WHAT IT SHOUD BE?].  There is no mention of a repeal of the gift tax, which could keep the cows in the barn for if and when the estate tax would come back.

Trump’s proposal did not include support of the border adjustment tax that was proposed by House Republicans.  The border adjustment tax would prevent companies from deducting the cost of imported goods, and sales of exports would no longer be subject to US tax.

  1. One time tax on trillions of dollars held overseas.

The proposal also calls for a low one-time tax on profits held overseas that have not been brought into the United States.  This is to incentivize companies to repatriate offshore profits to be used for investment in the United States.

  1. Eliminate tax breaks for special interests.

Little guidance was given on this, so it is unclear at this point what tax breaks the Trump Administration is referring to.

 

Notable Omissions

As pointed out in the Wall Street Journal, the following items where notably omitted from the proposed plan:

  1. Whether companies could immediately write off capital expenses as proposed in Trump’s plan during the 2016 campaign.
  1. What happens to personal exemptions?
  1. A new tax rate on repatriation of offshore profits?
  1. How would a tax break for child care be structured?
  1. Where the tax brackets for individuals would be set?

 

Where do we go from here?

It appears that there is still a lot of work to be done in Washington before a plan is ready to be passed.  The press releases stated that the Trump Administration will hold listening sessions with stakeholders to receive their input and will continue to work with the House and Senate throughout the month of May to develop the details of the plan.

Stayed tuned as the Thursday Report will provide more details when we know more.

 

_________________Mutt

 

_____Not Jeff

 

 

 

 

 

                                                                                                   

When Marty Shenkman and Alan are not bungee jumping, leaping out of perfectly good airplanes, or skateboarding across Montana, they sometimes co-write articles.  The following appeared in the February 5th, 2017 edition of the American Bar Association website’s news section.

 

 

The Asset Protection Continuum Practical Steps for Estate Planning Lawyers and Other Professionals (pt. 1 of 3)
by Martin Shenkman and Alan Gassman

 

Asset Protection Planning for Every Client

For clients, better asset protection is almost always an advisable goal.  Asset protection is simply planning to minimize the risks to clients’ assets and financial health that a range of risks might pose. These risks might include the costs of a lawsuit, malpractice claims for clients who are professionals, the financial impact of divorce, and suits relating to a client serving on a charitable board. Asset protection is not limited to costly trusts set up in foreign jurisdictions with uncommon sounding names. While that might be part of the asset protection tool-kit it is not the focus of asset protection for most clients. Nor is asset protection reserved for wealthy entrepreneurs and surgeons. Every client, and every practitioner, has engaged in some degree of asset protection planning.  However, by thinking about the asset protection process, and being more deliberate in guiding clients to address creditor and divorce protection risks, among others, all practitioners can enhance the services they provide.

The Asset Protection Continuum

Viewing asset protection as a planning continuum will help advisers who have not specialized in this area become more comfortable making it a part of their regular planning repertoire. It will also help clients who may not view themselves as needing significant or costly protections better understand how and why they should undertake asset protection steps.

How far each client will move on that continuum will depend on the client’s perception of risk exposure, the costs and complexity of the steps, and the client’s perception of the costs/benefit trade off of each additional step up the planning continuum. For estate planners in every discipline (CPAs, attorneys, wealth advisers, insurance consultants, etc.) understanding the asset planning continuum, and how to use it to build awareness and advise every client as to appropriate asset protection planning steps, should have always been a vital part of the estate and financial planning process. With the evolving nature of estate planning this will become a more important part of the process.

  • For many clients, relatively simple and low cost steps might suffice to enhance their asset protection. Buying a homeowners and auto insurance policy is asset protection. Determining the size of the deductible and the maximum level of coverage (e.g., whether an excess liability policy is purchased) is asset protection planning at the simplest level.
  • Moving forward up the asset protection continuum might involve creating a life insurance trust to protect the cash value of the life insurance (assuming it is not protected under state law) or setting up a limited liability company (“LLC”) to own a rental property or home based.
  • Perhaps on the higher end of the asset protection continuum might be the creation of an asset protection trust funded with a tier of entities.

Often, simpler and less expensive techniques can be used instead of, or in conjunction with, creditor protection trusts like DAPT and FAPT planning, and not all of these techniques are well understood or typically used by advisors and their clients. Focusing more attention on these alternative asset protection planning techniques will enable practitioners to offer a wider variety of more cost effective asset protection techniques to a wider array of clients. This will benefit clients and help practitioners expand their practices by creating a new driver.

The asset protection continuum is obviously a simplifying paradigm and cannot rigidly be applied. In some client situations lower level steps on the planning continuum will not suffice and, a jump to higher levels may be required. It is also important to recognize that the simplifying nature of the planning continuum can obscure important differences. A spousal lifetime access trust (“SLAT”) in which one spouse creates a trust for the benefit of the other, can vary significantly in how protective it is depending on a number of factors such as: what state it is formed in, what distribution provisions are provided for, whether an independent institutional trustee is named or the beneficiary spouse, and so on. Nonetheless, the continuum will provide a useful analogy to guide many clients to pursue more asset protection planning. It will hopefully provide practitioners who do not specialize a useful model to gain more comfort with asset protection planning. As practitioners proceed up the planning continuum if they reach a level of planning that is appropriate for a particular client, but beyond their skill set they can partner with other advisers to provide that level of planning.

Taxes Will Not be the Driver They Had Been

Whatever happens with respect to the tax system, the litigious nature of society is unlikely to be impacted. In recent years the federal estate tax exemption has risen to nearly $11 million for a couple (2017). Only 18 states have death taxes, and the trend appears to be toward higher exemptions or repeal. The Trump administration might succeed in fulfilling a long-time Republican goal of eliminating the federal estate tax. While many estate planners have focused more on maximizing income tax basis and other income tax planning issues, the reality is that this will not suffice to replace the driver for business that the estate tax had been. If the estate tax is in fact repealed the psychological consequence to many clients, in terms of eliminating the fear of the death tax, may take a more significant toll on business than the increasing exemptions have taken. For many practitioners, other drivers will have to be developed. One such driver to consider emphasizing is asset protection planning.

There is another important point to asset protection planning. Estate tax planning has often provided a strong non-asset protection justification for steps that may also have asset protection benefits. If the estate tax is repealed this rationalization for planning will also disappear. For those clients that would otherwise defer all planning waiting to see what happens this could be an important factor.

Insurance Coverage

Perhaps the first step on the asset protection continuum is a review of the client’s property, casualty and liability coverage. This is something all clients should undertake.

Consistent with one of the themes of this article, asset protection planning can entail a large spectrum of planning steps ranging from simple and inexpensive to very complex and costly. In many situations practitioners should confirm that the lower end of the spectrum has not been overlooked before or in lieu of jumping to more advanced planning techniques. Many clients have rental properties, land investments or residences used by other family members that have no or inadequate coverage.  One of the first steps for all clients should be making certain that the client has adequate underlying and umbrella or personal excess liability insurance in place for a given asset or activity that could cause liability. Few practitioners will have the expertise to determine specific coverage levels, but most practitioners will have the ability to spot some issues and direct clients to retain insurance consultants to review details. It is surprising how many clients, even those with significant wealth, have inadequate or no personal excess liability coverage.

Some common insurance planning oversights include the following:

  • No or inadequate personal excess liability (umbrella) policy. Many clients have never had their liability coverage reviewed. A surprising number of clients simply are lacking this type of coverage, which could expose most or all of their assets to claims. In some instances, e.g., when the client has different insurance companies providing underlying homeowners and the umbrella policy, there are gaps between underlying coverage and the umbrella.
  • Insurance for a rental or family use property is sometimes inappropriately underwritten as a primary residence coverage. Example: Mom and dad own a condominium in the city which daughter lives in. When they purchased the condominium it was erroneously insured as their residence. It may be more appropriate to have the parents own a landlord policy and their daughter to maintain a renter’s policy to assure proper coverage.
  • Old coverage. It is not uncommon to find that clients have old property, casualty or liability coverage that was simply never updated. They may have had a home business and when they closed it the rider for it was never cancelled, or more dangerously, they started a home based business and never discussed with their insurance agent what coverage might be necessary to insure the additional risks that provides. Values of coverage may be very out of date. When is the last time the client had collectibles appraised to assure that there is sufficient coverage?

For every client, confirming that they have had a recent review of all property, casualty and liability coverage should be a base step of asset protection planning.

Nature and Title to Assets

The nature and ownership (title) to assets can have important asset protection ramifications.

It is often wise to keep assets in the name of the spouse who does not have significant liability exposure. This is often referred to as the “poor person’s asset protection plan.” It often incurs no cost, but the protection provided may prove to be inadequate. The tales of the supposed non-risk spouse being sued for an automobile accident and losing the family wealth are legion. So while this might provide some protection, it should rarely be relied on. Further, if the lower-risk spouse dies and his or her will does not assure that the assets pass into an appropriately protective trust for the surviving at risk spouse, any protection may be lost.  In most states, assets acquired from earnings and growth in value during the marriage will be shared equally upon divorce, even when those assets have been kept in the name of one spouse or the other.  Otherwise, a prenuptial or postnuptial agreement can be entered into to assure that marital assets will be divided equally in the event of a divorce, and left for the benefit of the surviving spouse in the event of death.

Example: Where one spouse is a neurosurgeon and the other is a school teacher, it superficially has appeal to put the bulk of otherwise unprotected assets under the school teacher’s name, or under a revocable trust that will not protect from creditors but will protect the assets from guardianship and probate if the school teacher dies or becomes incapacitated. But as noted above if the school teacher dies without appropriate trust planning the assets will pass back to the neurosurgeon unprotected. If the simplistic approach is used the school teacher spouse’s will or revocable trust should include appropriately protective trusts to be funded on his or her death to protect the surviving neurosurgeon spouse. Liability insurance should be reviewed to assure that the school teacher is sufficient protected in the event of possible claims. But in all events, this should be viewed as the minimum of a plan and perhaps at most a temporary first step on the planning spectrum.

It is noteworthy that community property may be accessible to the creditors of one spouse, and that special procedures must be followed in order to terminate the status of community property under the transmutation rules in some states.

Depending on state law, Tenancy by the entireties property ownership may provide a meaningful measure of protection.  While relatively few states provide that the creditor of one spouse cannot reach tenancy by the entireties property, which is a special form of ownership that only exists between married couples, the bankruptcy law will normally recognize tenancy by the entireties with respect to jointly owned real estate that is located in a tenancy by the entireties state, such as Michigan, Florida and Delaware.  Caution should be exercised as a “last minute” transfer into tenancy by the entireties where a creditor already exists could be set aside pursuant to the fraudulent transfer rules that apply in the jurisdiction where the debtor lives, and also that joint debt other than a mortgage on the homestead may cause loss of tenancy by the entireties protection if one spouse files bankruptcy.

What about foreign accounts and entities?  It is difficult and sometimes almost impossible for a creditor to reach foreign assets because many jurisdictions do not recognize U.S. judgments, and would require a completely new jury trial in the jurisdiction itself before a judgment would be given that would enable a creditor to attach an account in that jurisdiction.  The same can apply with respect to stock owned in a foreign company where the stock certificate is also held in that foreign jurisdiction. Any type of foreign planning, however, can be fraught with a significant number of traps for the unwary, which could include having a judge put a debtor into jail on contempt of court charges if the judge has the authority to order the debtor to bring the assets back to the jurisdiction where the court is sitting, or the debtor has transferred the assets at the last minute in a “fraudulent transfer.”  Nevertheless, many debtors have used foreign asset situations to convince creditors to settle upon favorable terms.

Roth Conversion

Converting an IRA to a Roth IRA and paying the income tax triggered from unprotected assets may be a useful and easy to implement asset protection strategy. If state law protects both the IRA and the post-conversion Roth IRA the conversion will use up liquid assets held outside the protection of the IRAs, e.g., funds in a brokerage account, to pay the income tax triggered on the conversion. The result will be full post tax dollars protected by the Roth IRA rather than merely pre-tax dollars protected in the regular IRA.  Also, Roth IRAs have no mandatory distribution rules for the plan holder so dollars will not have to be removed from that protective structure as they eventually will from a regular IRA.

State Exemptions

Most planners are aware that each state has certain creditor “exemptions” that will provide protection for “exempt assets” that are purchased before a creditor problem arises, or with the proceeds from other exempt assets.  Every advisor should be familiar with the exemption laws of his or her state if those are material.  Some states, like Florida, have exemption rules that are extremely favorable to debtors, and can include protection of an unlimited or high homestead value, the cash value of life insurance policies, annuity contracts, IRAs, pension accounts, tenancy by the entireties assets owned by a married couple, 529 College Savings Plan accounts, Health Savings Account, and other categories of assets.

Example: Move to Florida and buy a big home. Florida is one of the few states to have an unlimited homestead exemption, and the Florida Constitution’s homestead protection trumps its fraudulent transfer law, meaning that a debtor with a judgment against him could move to Florida and buy a big house and not be pushed out of the house even if this was an intentional “fraudulent transfer” of previously owned non-exempt assets. It is noteworthy that the 2005 Bankruptcy Act provides that home equity that is attributable to a fraudulent transfer made within ten years before the filing of a bankruptcy can be lost if the debtor ends up in bankruptcy, but it normally takes three creditors to require a debtor to be in bankruptcy if the debtor has at least twelve legitimate creditors.

Other states, like Nevada, have very limited creditor protection exemptions, and in some situations the only exemptions that can be relied upon are those provided under Section 522 of the Bankruptcy Code, which are somewhat limited but include certain real and personal property, retirement funds and homestead.

If the client’s state has meaningful exemptions this might be a relatively simple and inexpensive planning step to retitle or purchase additional protected assets to provide incremental protection.

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Barrett Family Foundation webinar with Dr. John Barrett

Alan will be joined by Dr. John Barrett to discuss the Barrett Family Foundation event on October 19th at the Palladium in St. Petersburg, Florida.

Date:  Tuesday, May 16th, 2017 at 12:30 P.M.

To register go to:  https://attendee.gotowebinar.com/register/7954805380907609091

Additional Information: For more information, please email Alan at agassman@gassmanpa.com.

 

An Interview with Dr. John Barrett of the Barrett Family Foundation

How one concerned foundation is helping thousands of Tampa Bay students by rewarding and mentoring math and science teachers.

Jack Barrett is well known to many as having been an innovative and successful orthopedic surgeon.  He founded the Florida Knee and Orthopedic Center and helped thousands of people using his innovative knee procedures.  He has also been a successful entrepreneur in more ways than we can even begin to enumerate.

Jack’s focus, at present, is the Barrett Family Foundation’s initiative to reward and provide mentoring for math and science teachers in the Tampa Bay area.

Please consider attending the 2017 award program and presentations at the Palladium in St. Petersburg, Florida on Saturday, October 29th.  Bring your favorite math or science teacher.

What is the mission of the Barrett Family Foundation?

Dr. B: The Barrett Family Foundation was created to promote math and science education in our corner of the world, which includes Pinellas, Hillsborough, Pasco and Sarasota counties.

How long has the Foundation been operating?

Dr. B: This year, 2017, is our fourth year in operation. In that time we have raised and awarded $270,000 to foster stronger math and science programs in our schools.

What specifically does the Foundation spend its money on?

Dr. B: We give $10,000 awards to the very best math and science teachers in select public and private schools. The teachers are nominated by the schools and are judged by a panel of PhDs from St. Pete College.

Most foundations offer student scholarships. Why did you choose to focus on teachers?

Dr. B: Five years ago, the Organization for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD) ranked the math and science skills of students in its 28 member countries. The US came in at #25 in math and #23 in science, which was a dismal showing. We wanted to see whether we could improve the numbers in our small corner of the world, in mid-West Florida, and we believed that improving students’ skills is highly dependent on them having great educators teaching the material. So we chose to focus on incentivizing teachers in our area. Our pool is currently 35 schools which are either in the top 100 public schools in the area, or are private schools that are members of the Independent School Council.

Who works with the Barrett Family Foundation?

Dr. B: Dr. B: It truly is a family affair. My wife Erika and our daughter Michele are co-trustees. Our son Brian is a co-trustee and also the Managing Director.

What do you have planned for this year’s awards event?

Dr. B: Dr. Law, who is President of St. Pete College, has kindly provided us access to The Palladium in St. Petersburg for the event. We have invited Secretary of Education Betsy DeVos to be our featured speaker, and her office is currently vetting The Barrett Family Foundation.

What’s next for the Barrett Family Foundation?

Dr. B: We are adding middle school teachers to the program next year. Our closest advisors tell us that the “sparks” for math and science are lit during the middle school years, so we want to foster students’ passion and interest during this time. We are also creating a panel of previous award winners, who will help us present a seminar for brand new teachers of math and science. We are very excited about this “Teach the Teacher” event.

Thank you, Dr. Barrett, for creating this innovative and prolific family foundation.

Dr. B: Thank you.

For more information on the Barrett Family Foundation and their work in helping the community, visit BarrettFamilyFoundation.org

If you would be interested in attending an afterhours wine and cheese reception to meet Jack and talk about the foundation’s initiative, please email agassman@gassmanpa.com.

 

Richard Connolly’s World

Insurance advisor Richard Connolly of Ward & Connolly in Columbus, Ohio often shares pertinent articles found in well-known publications such as The Wall Street Journal, Barron’s, and The New York Times. Each week, we will feature some of Richard’s recommendations with links to the articles.

This week, the article of interest is “Wills Can Avert Family Warfare, but Have Their Own Hidden Traps” by Janet Morrissey.  This article was featured in April 23rd’s New York Times.

Richard’s description is as follows:

Many people don’t realize that if no estate plan is in place, or if the terms are not explicitly laid out and regularly updated, there can be chaos after an accident or a death, even among the friendliest of siblings.

“When you’re both gone, you need to understand your children will fight, and if they don’t, you’re a 1-percenter,” meaning a rare case, said John Collins, a law partner at Haynes and Boone in Dallas.

Please Click here to see article

 

8 Tips to Control Your Staffing Costs
by David Finkel


David Finkel
CEO of Maui Mastermind®

David Finkel is the Wall Street Journal bestselling author of SCALE: Seven Proven Principles to Grow Your Business and Get Your Life Back, which can be viewed by clicking here http://www.amazon.com/Scale-Seven-Proven-Principles-Business/dp/1591847249/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1444231150&sr=8-1&keywords=scale+seven+proven+principles+to+grow+your+business+and+get+your+life+back. As the CEO of Maui Mastermind, he has worked with 100,000+ businesses coaching clients and community members to buy, build, and sell over $5 billion worth of businesses.

 

In most companies, the largest expense is their employee.  Now I want to frame this article with a clear understanding that your team is essential and indispensable, and really not an expense.  Still, I want to share with you 8 sure-fire suggestions to help you control your staffing costs.

  1. Tie compensation to value created, not time served.

Too many businesses reward staff with raises, bonuses, and perks (e.g. vacation time, etc.) based on years of service.  I strongly encourage you to shift the conversation to be about value created.

  1. Bonuses and benefits are not “rights” but tied to performance (both individual and company).

Any bonus that is regular and expected soon becomes “base”.  How do you frame your bonuses?  Are they are “right” or are they a reward for value created?

  1. For creative and interesting work let intrinsic rewards rule.

This means don’t try to find financial incentive systems to overly control or encourage behavior, but instead, for interesting, creative work, let the work itself (and the feedback your team gets) be the driving force.

  1. Consider cuts to your admin team, or at the very least, grow this part of your team slower than your sales.

Most service and administrative departments can be cut by 1 in 4 with no impact on quality of work.  Many can handle 1 in 3 cut with no significant negative impact.  Remember, work expands to fill the time, and not all this expanded work creates value.

Click here to read the full article:

https://mauimastermind.com/2015/07/8-tips-to-control-your-staffing-costs/

 

Follow David on Twitter: @DavidFinkel https://twitter.com/davidfinkel.

 

Thoughtful Corner

 

Move your monitors up 6 to 14 inches.  Do you recall Marty Feldman playing the role of Igor in the movie “Young Frankenstein?”  Is that you in five, ten or twenty years?

Look up, not down.

Take a few reams of paper and put them to good use – under your monitors.  Raise them to where you are looking at a straight 90 degrees or higher angle.  This can make a big difference in years to come, and “looking up” can also release pleasurable dopamine, cure the common cold, and …

 

 Humor! (Or Lack Thereof!)

 

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Sign Sayings of the Week

  

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   In The News with Ron Ross

 

Trump advises Britain on divorce from Europe….Suggests they hook up with a younger, more attractive continent.

 New sports drink: North Korean Rocket Fizzle

 Terrified United Passengers now paying close attention to flight attendants’ instructions….Attendants forcing passengers to mime the bit with the oxygen mask

  

The robot felt the eyes on him as he sat at the bar

“You took my job”, the driver said, “you and your robot car”

The auto worker said, “I had some savings, things were going fine”

“Then you guys took my job on the GM assembly line”

“It wasn’t me”, the robot said, but no one seemed to listen

A former guard said, “You guys took our jobs at the prison”

“It wasn’t me”, the robot said, quietly sipping his oil

The robot had no emotions, but the workers’ blood started to boil

The bartender leaned in, saying, “Just what is your profession?”

“I’m a lawyer”, the robot said, as if to make an impression

They found his head in the toilet, his legs were in the gutter

As his owner picked up the pieces, they could hear him mutter

He said to the bartender, hauling the body on a gurney

“Working men don’t like a robot, but they really disdain an attorney

 

 

Upcoming Seminars and Webinars

Calendar of Events

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Alan on the Hot Seat!:

David Finkel
CEO of Maui Mastermind®

Alan will be the guest speaker for a “Hot Seat” question and answer session moderated by Maui Mastermind CEO, David Finkel.  This series is provided especially for Maui Mastermind clients and their advisors.

Dates:   Thursday, May 9th from 1 P.M – 2 P.M. (Eastern)  Business Law Hot Seat Sessions: A Moderated Q&A Session to Get help on Your Most Pressing Business Law Questions

Additional Information:  For more information, please email Alan at agassman@gassmanpa.com.

To submit questions for the Hot Seat sessions, please send to lawquestions@mauimastermind.com at least 2-3 days ahead of time.

 

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Join us on May 18th at 12pm ET for an exclusive “Gun Trusts” webinar.

A properly-prepared Gun Trust:

  • Enables the use of NFA-regulated firearms and accessories among trustees
  • Protects against potential future regulatory restrictions
  • Provides for the orderly transition of ownership upon death.

Alan Gassman and national gun law expert, Sean Healy will present a live one hour webinar on how to properly and safely draft Gun Trusts.

Monthly Business Law Webinar with Alan Gassman and Friends

Series 3: Designing and Enforcing Non-Competition Covenants in Florida with Darryl Richards of the Johnson Pope Law Firm.

Date:  Tuesday, May 23rd, 2017 at 12:30 P.M.

To register go to:  https://attendee.gotowebinar.com/register/9135252058342728195

Additional Information:

For more information, please email Alan at agassman@gassmanpa.com

To register for this entire series, please email  jason@gassmanpa.com

 

LIVE TAMPA PRESENTATION

Alan, along with David Finkel will present a one-day seminar on how to Accredited Investors Wealth Workshop.  Alan, in particular, will be speaking on The 10 “Must Have” Creditor Protection Strategies to Protect Your Wealth.

Date:  Friday, June 2, 2017 | Check In 7:45 a.m. | Starts 8:30 a.m. | Ends ~5 p.m. | Hosted bar networking reception to follow.

Location:  Tampa Westshore Marriott 1001 N Westshore Blvd, Tampa, FL 33607

Additional Information: For more information, please email Alan at agassman@gassmanpa.com.

LIVE TAMPA PRESENTATION

Alan, along with Dr. Singh, David Finkel and Kevin Bassett will present a one-day seminar on how to Scale Your Medical Practice.  Alan, in particular, will be speaking on asset protection for physicians and medical practices.

Date:  Sunday, June 4, 2017 | Check In 7:45 a.m. | Starts 8:30 a.m. | Ends ~5 p.m. | Hosted cocktail social with appetizers to follow.

Location:  Tampa Westshore Marriott 1001 N Westshore Blvd, Tampa, FL 33607

Additional Information: For more information, please email Alan at agassman@gassmanpa.com.

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Florida Bar Tax Section Phone CLE Program

A Practical Update on the Trump Administration Tax Changes, and How to Advise Clients Accordingly.

Date:  Wednesday, June 7, 2017 from 12:00 P.M. – 1:00 P.M.

Registration Details: TBA

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Monthly Business Law Webinar with Alan Gassman and Friends

Series 4: Coordinating Business Conduct, Contractor Relationships and Insurances with Chuck Wasson.

Date:  Tuesday, June 20th, 2017 at 12:30 P.M.

To register go to:  https://attendee.gotowebinar.com/register/4299825319267582211

Additional Information:

For more information, please email Alan at agassman@gassmanpa.com

To register for this entire series, please email  jason@gassmanpa.com

David Finkel
CEO of Maui Mastermind®

Alan will be the guest speaker for a Maui Mastermind webinar moderated by Maui Mastermind CEO, David Finkel

Dates:  Tuesday, June 27th from 1 P.M – 2 P.M. (Eastern) Topic: Negotiating Leases for Your      Business and Related Relationships

Additional Information:  For more information, please email Alan at agassman@gassmanpa.com

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Health Law Update webinar with Lester Perling

Alan, along with Lester Perling, will update us on the Health Law Update for Florida CMS and ACA.

Date:  Thursday, June 29, 2017 | from 12:30 P.M. – 1:00 P.M.

To Resgister, Please go to https://attendee.gotowebinar.com/register/6845642240213202946

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Monthly Business Law Webinar with Alan Gassman and Friends

Series 5: Creditor Protection Planning for the Professional Practice or Operating Business

Date:  Tuesday, July 25th, 2017 at 12:30 P.M.

To register go to:  https://attendee.gotowebinar.com/register/471874487653868291

Additional Information:

For more information, please email Alan at agassman@gassmanpa.com

To register for this entire series, please email  jason@gassmanpa.com

 

Marty Shenkman and Alan Gassman on the Asset Protection Continuum.

Marty Shenkman is well known to most estate planning and tax professionals.  He practices in New Jersey and has published over 40 books on estate planning, tax and related topics.  His abilities are beyond legendary, including the Heckerling Reports that he issues daily during the Heckerling Estate Planning Institute, and the Notre Dame Tax and Estate Planning Institute Reports that he issues as well.

Please come out to meet Marty on August 21st at All Children’s Hospital at the Conference Center for a one hour continuing education program on a topic to be announced.

Marty and Alan recently presented a webinar on the asset protection continuum, which concentrates on bread and butter creditor protection measures that can be taken for clients without the need for complicated or expensive “asset protection trust systems” and other arrangements.

They will be presenting part 2 on this topic on May, 4, 2017 @ 12 P.M.  There is no charge.

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Monthly Business Law Webinar with Alan Gassman and Friends

Series 6: The Art and Science of Negotiating Agreements with David Finkel and Steve Maxwell

Date:  Tuesday, August 15th, 2017 at 12:30 P.M.

To register go to:  https://attendee.gotowebinar.com/register/1353295785037253635

Additional Information:

For more information, please email Alan at agassman@gassmanpa.com

To register for this entire series, please email  jason@gassmanpa.com

 

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LIVE LINCOLN NEBRASKA PRESENTATION

Alan will speak at the Nebraska Medical Association’s Annual Meeting in Lincoln, Nebraska. His topics include: Top 10 Mistakes Physicians Make with Investments/Business & Lawsuits 101.

Date:  Friday, September 8, 2017 | 1:30 p.m. & 4:30 p.m.

Location:  Lincoln, Nebraska

Additional Information: For more information, please email Alan at agassman@gassmanpa.com.

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LIVE NEW PORT RICHEY PRESENTATION

Alan will be speaking at the New Port Richey Charitable Consortium on new estate planning issues and hot topics.

Date:  Thursday, September 14, 2017 | 12:00 p.m. (eastern)

Location:  Spartan Manor 6121 Massachusetts Avenue, New Port Richey, FL 34653

Additional Information: For more information, please email Alan at agassman@gassmanpa.com.

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LIVE PRESENTATION:

ESTATE PLANNING COUNCIL OF NORTHEAST FLORIDA (Jacksonville)

Please put Tuesday, September 19, 2017 on your calendar to enjoy a dinner conference for the Estate Planning Council of Northeast Florida.

Date: Tuesday, September 19, 2017

Location: TBA

Additional Information:  For more information, please email Alan at agassman@gassmanpa.com

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Alan on the Hot Seat!:

David Finkel
CEO of Maui Mastermind®

Alan will be the guest speaker for a “Hot Seat” question and answer session moderated by Maui Mastermind CEO, David Finkel.  This series is provided especially for Maui Mastermind clients and their advisors.

Date:   Thursday, September 21st from 1 P.M – 2 P.M. (Eastern)  Business Law Hot Seat Sessions: A Moderated Q&A Session to Get help on Your Most Pressing Business Law Questions

Additional Information:  For more information, please email Alan at agassman@gassmanpa.com.

To submit questions for the Hot Seat sessions, please send to lawquestions@mauimastermind.com at least 2-3 days ahead of time.

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Monthly Business Law Webinar with Alan Gassman and Friends

Series 7: Negotiating the Purchase and Sale of a Business with John McDonald of Hyde Park Capital

Date:  Tuesday, September 26th, 2017 at 12:30 P.M.

To register go to:  https://attendee.gotowebinar.com/register/3133928477941465347

Additional Information:

For more information, please email Alan at agassman@gassmanpa.com

To register for this entire series, please email  jason@gassmanpa.com

LIVE PRESENTATION-Naples Estate Planning Council

Alan will be speaking at the Naples Estate Planning Conference

Subject: IRA Planning with Trusts, Minimum Distributions, and Associated Topics – How to Learn the Rules and Use Them Expeditiously

Date:  Friday, October 13th, 2017 – 8 A.M. – 5 P.M.

Location:  Naples-Exact Location TBD

 

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LIVE PRESENTATION:

2017 MER CONTINUING EDUCATION PROGRAM TALKS FOR PHYSICIANS

Alan will be speaking at the following Medical Education Resources (MER) events:

  • October 20th – October 22nd, 2017 in New York, New York
  • November 30th – December 3rd, 2017 in Nassau, Bahamas

His tentative topics for these events include the 10 Biggest Mistakes Physicians Make in Their Investments and Business Planning, Lawsuits 101, 50 Ways to Leave Your Overhead, and Essential Creditor Protection and Retirement Planning Considerations.

Date:   New York: October 20th – 22nd, 2017

Nassau: November 30th – December 3rd, 2017

Location:       New York: To be determined.
Nassau: Atlantis Hotel | Paradise Beach Drive, Paradise Island, Bahamas

Additional Information: For more information, please email Alan at agassman@gassmanpa.com.

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Monthly Business Law Webinar with Alan Gassman and Friends

Series 8: Choice of Entity and Multiple Entity Structures

Date:  Tuesday, October 31st, 2017 at 12:30 P.M.

To register go to:  https://attendee.gotowebinar.com/register/9026149718541918979

Additional Information:

For more information, please email Alan at agassman@gassmanpa.com

To register for this entire series, please email  jason@gassmanpa.com

Monthly Business Law Webinar with Alan Gassman and Friends

Series 9: Uses and Abuses of Independent Contractor Agreements

Date:  Tuesday, November 21st, 2017 at 12:30 P.M.

To register go to:  https://attendee.gotowebinar.com/register/8342069867623416835

Additional Information:

For more information, please email Alan at agassman@gassmanpa.com

To register for this entire series, please email  jason@gassmanpa.com

Monthly Business Law Webinar with Alan Gassman and Friends

Series 10: Income Tax Strategies and Compliance Aspects of Business Planning

Date:  Tuesday, December 19th, 2017 at 12:30 P.M.

To register go to:  https://attendee.gotowebinar.com/register/608938507660895491

Additional Information:

For more information, please email Alan at agassman@gassmanpa.com

To register for this entire series, please email  jason@gassmanpa.com

LIVE ESTATE PLANNING COUNCIL OF NORTHEAST FLORIDA PRESENTATION:

Alan will be speaking for the Estate Planning Council of Northeast Florida on March 20, 2018 on the topic of DYNAMIC PLANNING STRATEGIES FOR THE SUCCESSFUL CLIENT.

Date: Tuesday, March 20, 2018

Location: To Be Determined

Additional Information: For more information, please email Alan at agassman@gassmanpa.com.

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LIVE PRESENTATION:

2018 MER CONTINUING EDUCATION PROGRAM TALKS FOR PHYSICIANS

Alan will be speaking at the Medical Education Resources (MER) event:

Date: May 17 – 20, 2018

Location: Nassau, Bahamas – Atlantis Paradise Island Resort

Additional Information: For more information, please email Alan at agassman@gassmanpa.com

 

Applicable Federal Rates

Below we have this month, last month’s, and the preceding month’s Applicable Federal Rates, because for a sale you can use the lowest of the 3.

 

SHORT TERM AFRs MID TERM AFRs LONG TERM AFRs
April
2017
Annual 1.11% Annual 2.12% Annual 2.82%
Semi-Annual 1.11% Semi-Annual 2.11% Semi-Annual 2.80%
Quarterly 1.11% Quarterly 2.10% Quarterly 2.79%
Monthly 1.11% Monthly 2.10% Monthly 2.78%
March
2017
Annual 1.01% Annual 2.05% Annual 2.78%
Semi-Annual 1.01% Semi-Annual 2.04% Semi-Annual 2.76%
Quarterly 1.01% Quarterly 2.03% Quarterly 2.75%
Monthly 1.01% Monthly 2.03% Monthly 2.74%
February
2017
Annual 1.04% Annual 2.10% Annual 2.81%
Semi-Annual 1.04% Semi-Annual 2.09% Semi-Annual 2.79%
Quarterly 1.04% Quarterly 2.08% Quarterly 2.78%
Monthly 1.04% Monthly 2.08% Monthly 2.77%