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Florida sports magnate dies, showcases importance of estate plans

The importance of proper estate planning is something that is often discussed here. The recent passing of Florida sports magnate Malcolm Glazer is highlighting just how important estate planning can be for someone with considerable assets.

Glazer has been ill since 2006, so he had ample time to work on his estate plan to determine it was how he needed it to be for his heirs. His family is worth more than $4 billion. Now, his six children and wife will have to carry on his legacy.

Three of his sons already play an important part with the Tampa Bay Buccaneer franchise since they are co-chairmen. Another one of his sports teams, an English soccer team, was split among trusts that his children control. The exact layout of his estate, however, is something that might remain close to the vest for this private family. That is, of course, unless the details are made public in probate court, which is unlikely.

When dealing with a considerable estate like the Glazer estate, there really isn't anything typical that will be done. Numerous trusts and a complex plan are often in place that will help to keep the taxes owed minimal.

In some estates, the surviving spouse might take control of the assets, but there are also some instances in which the children might begin to take control of some. This is where trusts and estate planning come into play.

Generally, there aren't taxes owed when a spouse takes control of assets. Federal taxes, however, are associated with the passing of assets to future generations. Planning via trusts and other methods might mitigate those taxes. Because of the complexities of this type of estate planning, it is important that anyone working on an estate plan understand what each move will accomplish or cost.

Source: Tampa Bay Times, "Careful estate planning likely ensures Tampa Bay Bucs stay with Glazer family" Jeff Harrington, May. 28, 2014

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