Belleville, MI asked in Estate Planning for Michigan

Q: I inherited 28,000 from my elder aunt's estate. Check is made out to me. May I have it made out to my son instread?

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2 Lawyer Answers
Trent Harris
Trent Harris
Answered
  • Estate Planning Lawyer
  • Jackson, MI
  • Licensed in Michigan

A: No. The money has to be paid out to the person who is entitled to it under Michigan law, or under the will. If you don't accept the money, then it passes to the next person who would be entitled to it.

But as an alternative, you could accept the check, cash it, and then gift the funds to your son. For gift tax planning, you could consider splitting the gift to your son into two payments: $15,000 this year and the rest next year. That way you could take advantage of the IRS $15,000 annual exemption amount. There are other ways to structure the gift so you could give your son the entire amount this year, but those are beyond the scope of this answer. Whether and how to do these things are really questions you should discuss with an attorney.

As always, be sure to talk to a qualified attorney about your specific situation before choosing to rely on any information you get from internet discussion boards, such as this one.

Kenneth V Zichi agrees with this answer

Kenneth V Zichi
Kenneth V Zichi
Answered
  • Estate Planning Lawyer
  • Howell, MI
  • Licensed in Michigan

A: Mr Harris' answer is spot-on.

And remember, 'inheritances' (other than distributions from tax deferred IRA/401ks) are not taxable as income -- IF you handle them properly!

Seek that local legal help to insure you do things properly!

-- This answer is offered for informational purposes only and does not constitute legal advice or create an attorney/client relationship.

I am licensed to practice in Michigan only. Please seek competent local legal help if you feel you need legal advice

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