by: Jennifer d Peshke esq.
With so many people fleeing larger urban cities as a result of the 2020 Covid-19 Lockdowns seeking solace, sunshine, and green space to spread out and work remotely, Florida is welcoming a rush of new residents to the sunshine state.
Once your bags are unpacked and you are settled in your new home, you should consider the impact of becoming a Florida Resident not only as it relates to your day-to-day enhanced quality of life, but also as it impacts your long-term tax and estate planning for yourself and your family.
There are many benefits to becoming a Florida resident that should be discussed with a Florida estate planning attorney including Florida’s unique homestead law and the timing and application process to qualify for the Florida homestead tax exemptions and creditor protection. In addition, while you may have a will, a trust, a power of attorney and a health care declaration and a living will from your prior state, consider that these documents reflect law in the state you are no longer residing in. The documents may be valid however they do not reflect Florida law which will ultimately govern your estate if you pass away as a Florida resident. New residents should add meeting with an experienced estate planning attorney to their short list of things to do once they settle in Florida and establish Florida residency to discuss their current estate planning needs.
Besides Florida’s unique homestead laws which include creditor protection as well as various tax exemptions, the state of Florida does not tax a decedent at the state level for estate taxes when a person passes away as a Florida resident. This is a significant savings if you are a Florida resident and pass away as such as compared to many other states with significant state estate taxation. An experienced Florida estate planning attorney can recommend ways to establish and document your new Florida residency to make it crystal clear that you are in fact domiciled in Florida and have claimed Florida as your state of residency with the use of a Declaration of Domicile which can be recorded in your county of residence in the state of Florida.
If you have established residency in the state of Florida but still maintain an additional home in another state, or you own investment property in another state, you should speak with an experienced estate planning attorney to discuss how your assets outside of the state of Florida are titled as it relates to your overall estate plan to avoid a liability against your estate and personal assets, and to avoid the potential of creating a situation which may unnecessarily cost your family and loved ones a lot of money and headache to administer an ancillary probate estate for you outside the state of Florida. There are many estate planning and asset protection strategies to discuss with an experienced estate planning Florida attorney as well for clients with property in the state of Florida as well as in other states and countries.
If you have recently relocated to the state of Florida and are ready to have your estate plan reviewed to reflect your new Florida residency status, contact The Law Offices of Jennifer D. Peshke, P.A. at 772-231-1233 or explore our firm further at: www.peshkelaw.com to schedule your estate planning consultation today.
The attorneys at the Law Offices of Jennifer D. Peshke, P.A. have over 15 years of combined estate planning experience servicing the needs of Florida residents.