How The $1 Billion Kennedy Family Fortune Defies Death And Taxes
The biggest threats to building, growing and protecting wealth include inflation, taxes, financing costs paid to banking and financial institutions and fees and commissions paid to third parties. Wealthy individuals, families, corporations and banking and financial institutions understand this and have adequate tax and asset protection strategies to limit exposure to these threats.
Tax planning is something the average person and family do not think about until tax time every year.How we earn our income determines the amount we pay in tax. Earned income which we receive with our paycheck from our employer is taxed higher than portfolio income earned from investments like stocks. Passive income generated from investments like investment real estate and oil and gas contracts, is the least taxed income.
When it comes to contributing to savings and investments tax can be paid during the time of contribution, time of growth and time of withdrawal or transfer. Bank on Yourself plans can be funded with after tax income from you earned income. The incredible financial vehicle of dividend-paying high cash value whole life insurance provides tax free growth of the guaranteed interest rate established in your contract. Dividends paid out to policy holders are viewed under current tax law as a return of premium (an over- payment of your monthly, quarterly or yearly premium) and not taxed inside your plan. With assistance of a Bank on Yourself Authorized Advisor and your tax advisor, you can withdraw and access funds tax free under current tax law to fund a tax free retirement. Dividend-Paying Whole Life Insurance is also a private investment as it is a private contract between you and the insurance company and is protected from liability, lawsuits and divorce. (Please consult your legal advisor as this defers from state to state). Dividend-Paying Whole Life Insurance has a death benefit that increases with cash value that can be passed through tax free to your heirs, family or favorite charity without going to a probate court.
Tax deferral through traditional qualified plans is tax planning based on many variables and unknowns. At Valhalla Wealth Financial we help our clients structure wealth plans on guarantees, predictability and security. No-one knows if tax rates will go up or down in the future. We can look at trends and predict and guess. If you pay your taxes now rather than in the future, you eliminate the variable out of your plan completely. Would you rather pay tax on the seed or the harvest? I prefer the seed as well.
Carl O’ Donnel wrote a great article for Forbes Magazine on the Kennedy Family giving you an insight into their tax and asset protection strategies and how they build, grow and protect their wealth. You can access the entire article here. The Kennedy Family picture is from Associated Press and also originally published at originally at Forbes.com.
“The bulk of the family’s wealth is held in dozens of trusts, which range in value from tens of thousands to as much as $25 million. Nearly all are managed by Joseph P. Kennedy Enterprises, a family office located in New York City with assets dating back to 1927, according to Christopher Kennedy, a member of the Kennedy family who sits on the office’s board.
Unlike the office’s heyday under JFK’s confidant Stephen Smith, when “there was actually stock picking going on inside the office walls,” the task of investing the family trusts today is handled by outside organizations, Kennedy said. While the family has a final say in where the assets are allocated, day-to-day oversight has been tasked to an advisory board of six experts, including Andy Golden, who manages Princeton University’s endowment.
Joseph P. Kennedy’s choice to place his fortune in trusts is possibly the single most critical reason why the family wealth is still around today. The most obvious benefit was to protect the fortune from the prying fingers of ne’er-do-well heirs, said Laurence Leamer, who wrote three Kennedy biographies. Trusts often prevent beneficiaries from tapping more than 10 percent of principal, said Rick Kruse, principal at Kruse and Crawford, which offers estate management advice.
The trusts also protect the family assets from another set of prying fingers: Uncle Sam’s. By holding assets in so called “dynasty trusts,” which are passed from heir to heir for decades, if not longer, the Kennedy family fortune is largely insulated from the estate tax, Kruse said. Handled correctly, a dynasty trust could potentially maintain an un-taxable fortune indefinitely. The oldest Kennedy trust on record dates back to 1936.
Like politics, tax savvy seems to run in the Kennedy family. The most recent example is the 1998 sale of the family’s most valuable asset: the iconic Merchandise Mart, a towering retail space on the Chicago River that was once thought to be the largest building in the world. Thanks to a carefully crafted deal with Vornado Realty VNO +0.53%, the Kennedy family deferred – or possibly avoided completely – capital gains tax on nearly half the value of the sale.”
We do not have to be a Kennedy, Rockefeller or Carnegie to change our paradigm and thinking and structure our wealth plan to be more tax efficient and reduce the wealth destroying threats.
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Yours in purpose and prosperity,
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