If you don't take care of your estate, the IRS will.

When Elvis Presley died, his estate was worth more than $10 million. His daughter received less than one-third of that. When Karen Carpenter died, her $6 million estate only netted her heirs about $1 million. Who was the biggest beneficiary in these well-publicized cases? The Internal Revenue Service.

Without proper estate planning, a significant portion of your estate could go to the IRS; larger estates are taxed at an upwardly spiraling rate that reached 48% in 2004. That means the government can claim almost half of what you and your spouse have worked so hard to achieve.


What's the problem? Without estate planning, you can't take maximum advantage of tax strategies. You can't guarantee that the assets in your estate will be preserved for your heirs. Having a will just isn't good enough anymore.

What's the solution? Just one. Planning. Emmanuel A. Santos is a California attorney and certified public accountant; and he can help you review and implement your estate planning options.

The truth is, everyone—from the moment they are on their own financially—needs to think about estate planning and then do something about it. Estate planning provides a way for people to gain peace of mind and a feeling of control that their wishes are being carried out.

Estate planning services offered:

• Evaluate your estate planning objectives.

• Determine the proper documents to express your wishes: a will, revocable living trust, living wills, general durable power of attorney or power of attorney for health care.

• Review or modify your existing estate planning documents to maximize your tax reduction and asset protection strategies.

• Execute the estate planning strategies with the help of a trusted and reputable attorney.

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