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Tax Planning Ideas: Sound Strategies Protect Wealth, Advises Whitnell & Co.
Date:4/4/2008

CHICAGO and OAK BROOK, Ill., April 4, 2008 /PRNewswire/ -- Guarding wealth from unnecessary taxes is an imperative. But individuals with high net worth may not always have the time and resources to manage their wealth optimally, or they may have an inexperienced financial advisor who is not proactive.

(Photo: http://www.newscom.com/cgi-bin/prnh/20080404/CLF002 )

"Saving on current income taxes and minimizing estate taxes when transferring wealth to heirs are two key areas high net worth people should focus on," said Bill Thonn, president and CEO of Whitnell & Co., a wealth management firm based in Oak Brook, Illinois. "In addition, it's possible that the new administration may change the tax laws, so that's something people should start planning for today with their financial advisor. For instance, it may benefit them to take more income now, rather than waiting for potential tax rate increases."

With the right strategies, people can avoid paying unnecessary taxes. For example, high net worth people often end up paying the Alternative Minimum Tax (AMT) on their income, or they might owe an IRS penalty for not paying sufficient estimated taxes, scenarios that can be easily avoided with a seasoned financial advisor.

High net worth people can leverage their assets in many ways, including making endowments to favorite charities and helping children or grandchildren finance college educations. They can also put strategic plans in place to limit estate taxes, which can be up to 50% of their estate.

Today's complicated tax laws offer many avenues for protecting wealth. High net worth people can avoid the AMT by forecasting predicted income -- including their salary, stock options, and sales of assets -- and balancing those items with strategic charitable giving (property instead of cash), losses on stocks, and tax-exempt investing. Other strategies incl
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SOURCE Whitnell & Co.
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