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Blog: Opinions & Observations

Church Incorporation - February 2012

February 07, 2012

The creation of corporate entities for the purpose of limited liability has become commonplace. Individuals and groups regularly take advantage of corporations, limited liability companies, or other structures in order to limit exposure to liability, but only within the last decade has this option become available to a particular type of group in Virginia, namely churches. Churches in Virginia have traditionally operated as unincorporated associations of individuals. The...

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Grantor Retained Annuity Trusts (“GRATs”) - January 2012

January 05, 2012

A Grantor Retained Annuity Trust (commonly called a “GRAT”) is a special trust used to pass ownership of assets to children or other family members after a specified number of years.  Potentially, a GRAT can achieve significant gift tax savings for the grantor, as well as remove the assets from the grantor’s gross estate for estate tax purposes.  GRATs can perform particularly well when the valuation rate, known as the 7520 rate, is lower—and those rates have been at...

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