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Harry and Kent playing with power tools

Tom and Marty building a wall

Craig telling Tom that something is missing

To see more pictures from the workdays check out our SWRA webpage.

Financial Seminar

George Baker

The following is from Dow Jones 2010.

Knowing When To Throw Out A Plan

It shouldn't be surprising that a financial planner preaches the gospel of having a plan. But Steven Klammer, a lawyer and CPA at Davidson Trust in Devon, Pa., goes one step further to stress that when circumstances change, the best-laid plans need to change—sometimes a lot.

Take estate plans, which are notoriously affected by the whims of Congress. Klammer was recently reviewing a client's will, which was written a few years ago when the federal exemption on estate tax was just $600,000. At the time, the client rightly set up a so-called AB trust, in which married couples maximize their exemption by dividing their estate in half. When the first spouse dies, the amount of his or her estate that is less than the estate tax exemption flows to the B trust, which can be used either by the spouse or descendants. Any portion of the estate subject to tax flows to the A trust, which belongs solely to the living spouse and is thus not taxed until his or her death. The strategy effectively doubles the estate tax deduction for individuals.

When Klammer looked at the finances of this couple, he saw that their total net worth was around $2.5 million— less than the estate tax deduction of $3.5 million most recently in effect. "There was no longer any need for an AB trust," he said. "Under current tax law the estate had no tax liability anyway."

So Klammer simplified the couple's estate plan to reflect the law, knowing that the law could change again. (The estate tax expired completely on January 1, 2010, and is scheduled to come back in 2011 with a $1 million

individual deduction. Congress is currently whether to reinstate the tax for 2010, retroactively.)

deciding perhaps

"No one thinks they're going to die tomorrow," says Klammer, "but the safe thing to do is go in and change the documents now, even if it means changing them again later." Copyright (c) 2010, Dow Jones.


Frank Fidei passed away on Feb. 10th. Frank worked for Westinghouse and Siemens for 41 years and was a manager in Generator Engineering.

Merle Flandermeyer passed away on March 4th. Merle started at Westinghouse in Pittsburgh and worked there and Orlando for 36 years.

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