Scott brings new ideas to estate planning, often for clients who already have an estate plan in place. Many of his clients are elderly or dying (or the children of elderly parents) so the focus is on generation-skipping tax planning; achieving a basis stepup at death; avoiding probate where appropriate; and using discounts to minimize estate tax.
Scott also has considerable experience planning for pension/IRA death benefits. For example, using those benefits to fund trusts while still achieving a slow, tax-deferred payout of the benefits, or as another example, using the benefits to satisfy charitable bequests without interfering with the payout of the rest of the benefits.
Scott has worked on numerous estate plans and estates involving non-citizen spouses, including severing joint assets under the special gift tax rules that apply.
For families with substantial real estate holdings, Scott has been a pioneer in using a single trust to hold life insurance and to serve as an “intentionally defective grantor trust” purchasing assets at a discounted value. For more typical suburban families, Scott often can complete the estate plan in two meetings: one meeting to review the family situation and the ownership of the assets, explain the appropriate plan, and quote a fee, and a second meeting (after drafts have been sent to the clients for review) to execute the documents.