Estate Planning

Many people have misunderstandings about what estate planning is and how it may affect you and your family while you are alive.  Effective estate planning facilitates the orderly transfer of assets to your beneficiaries, provides security for your surviving spouse, and can reduce or eliminate the tax due on the transfer of your business and other assets.  For business owners, providing for business continuity and succession of ownership is essential.  We can guide you through the complex process of getting your financial affairs in order.

Few of us like to think about the thought of dying, but it’s hard to live with the thought that we may have not made adequate provision for our family and friends who survive us.  The earlier you make arrangements for handling your estate, the greater your chance of taking full advantage of the tax opportunities available and thereby maximizing the amount that goes to your beneficiaries.  Nothing is more unsettling than the thought that a substantial slice of the wealth you’ve worked hard to accumulate throughout the years will end up as government assets!

Estate planning will allow you to be remembered the way you want.  To leave a legacy to the ones you love that reflects your wishes and gives purpose to what you’ve accomplished in your life. Without estate planning, that likely will not happen.

It is equally important when planning to transfer your estate that you make adequate provisions for yourself and your spouse in your later years.  Striking this balance calls for considerable skill and foresight - and a detailed knowledge of the tax laws.

Ohnward Financial Advisor Services provides estate planning services that include:

  • Assistance with drawing up and reviewing your will
  • Making full use of exemptions and lower tax rates on lifetime transfers
  • Optimizing lifetime transfers between spouses
  • Transferring agricultural or business property
  • Transferring assets into trust
  • Arranging adequate life assurance to cover potential inheritance tax liabilities

If you haven’t already made the necessary provisions for your estate, we urge you to begin your estate planning now by contacting us for a free assessment. You may also request additional information from us.


Testamentary Trust - A Trust that is included under the terms and conditions established in a Will. Such Trusts take effect after the death of the person making the Will.


Special Needs Trust - A Trust established for a person who receives government benefits so as not to disqualify the beneficiary from such government benefits. Ordinarily, when a person is receiving government benefits, an inheritance or receipt of a gift could reduce or eliminate the person's eligibility for such benefits. By establishing a Trust which provides for luxuries or other benefits which otherwise could not be obtained by the beneficiary, the beneficiary can obtain the benefits from the Trust without defeating his/her eligibility for government benefits. Often a Special Needs Trust includes a trigger which terminates the Trust in the event that it could be used to make the beneficiary ineligible for government benefits.


Inter Vivos Trust - A Trust created during the lifetime of the grantor. A common type is a Revocable Living Trust in which the grantor transfers title to property to a Trust, serves as the initial Trustee and has the ability to remove the property from the Trust during his/her lifetime.


Irrevocable Trust - A Trust that cannot be altered, changed, modified or revoked after its creation (absent extreme extenuating circumstances). Once a grantor transfers property to an Irrevocable Trust, the grantor can no longer take the property back from the Trust.


Living Trust - A Trust created during the lifetime of a grantor which can be altered, changed, modified or revoked. Typically the grantor is the initial Trustee as well as the initial beneficiary of the Trust, with his/her spouse and children as the ultimate beneficiaries of the Trust.


Asset Protection Trust - A type of Trust designed to protect a person's assets from claims of future creditors, frequently established in foreign countries.


Charitable trust - A type of Trust established to benefit a particular charity or the public. Typically charitable Trusts are established as part of an estate plan to lower or avoid imposition of Federal (and some states') estate and gift taxes.  There are two main types of Charitable Trusts.  Seek the advice of a financial advisor to help you decide which is best for you.



As a court approved conservator, Ohnward Financial Advisor Services manages the assets for a person who is unable to handle their own financial affairs.  In this role, Financial Advisor Services sees that all bills are paid on time and work with Ohnward Tax & Accounting to ensure all tax returns are promptly and properly filed.  In addition, the bank prepares and files annual reports to the court.

Like Kind Exchange

If you are planning to sell real-estate or personal property currently held for investment or productive use in a trade or business and purchase another one, you may want to take advantage of the benefit of a 1031 Like Kind Exchange.  Under section 1031 of the Internal Revenue Code, investment or business property owners - using a qualified intermediary - can sell one qualified property and purchase similar "like kind" property while deferring capital gains. Capital gain taxes are deferred on the sale of the "relinquished" property until the replacement property is sold at a future date.

Irrevocable Life Insurance Trust

An Irrevocable Life Insurance Trust is a type of trust that by its design can't be modified, amended, changed or revoked. It can be used to achieve a variety of estate planning goals including:

  • Reducing or even eliminating estate taxes by removing property from the Trustor's estate

  • Reducing or even eliminating estate taxes for future generations

  • Establishing a charitable legacy

  • Provide asset protection for surviving spouses, descendants, and other beneficiaries.

For individuals whose estates are based on insurance policy payouts upon their death.

Insurance proceeds are payable to a living trust rather than a trust under your will. The trust remains passive until the insured’s death, after which the bank receives the insurance proceeds as trustee, avoiding probate delays.

Contact Ohnward Financial Advisor Services today to discover how our strategies will meet your financial needs.


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