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Turning the Page to 2021

Financial planning considerations for the new year

By Teresa Harland, Wealth Advisor Team Lead

2020 has changed our lives in so many ways. Our children’s educational format has morphed from in-person instruction to a hybrid model to distance learning. Zooming is a daily occurrence, and I’ve never used the word quarantine so much in my life. But even during these unchartered times, one thing remains stronger than ever: the necessity of PLANNING.

A solid tax and wealth plan can help you weather turbulent economic markets and uncertainty. As we approach the end of the calendar year, consider these important strategies to maximize your current and future wealth position.

Tax Efficiency Considerations

  • Review your portfolio for capital gains/losses
  • Be mindful of the Alternative Minimum Tax (AMT) trap
  • Review your portfolio to ensure your allocations are still in line with your goals
  • Plan for potential tax increases in 2021

Charitable Giving Strategies

  • Develop a plan to make charitable gifts by year-end
  • Consider establishing and funding a Donor Advised Fund
  • Utilize “Gift Bunching” by combining multi-year gifts into one year for a greater deduction
  • Consider making cash gifts to take advantage of the increased limit on certain charitable deductions up to 100% of adjusted gross income

Wealth Transfer Opportunities

  • Meet with Wealth Planning team to review your overall wealth strategy
  • Determine whether to make significant lifetime transfers in 2020
  • Take advantage of current high transfer tax exemptions
  • Utilize annual exclusion giving- $15,000 single/$30,000 married

Retirement Planning

  • Review your portfolio allocation to ensure it’s aligned with future goals
  • Remember that Required Minimum Distributions (RMD’s) have been suspended for 2020
  • Consider converting a traditional IRA to a Roth IRA
  • Maximize retirement plan contributions

Our Private Wealth Management team is ready to assist you with year-end planning. Please contact us at 701-298-4100 or As we celebrate the holiday season, we hope that you and your loved ones are safe and healthy and are finding new ways to Live First in today’s environment.

This information is general in nature and is not intended to be legal, tax, or financial advice. Consult an appropriate professional concerning your specific situation. Private Wealth Management services are offered by First International Bank & Trust, Member FDIC.

Financial Planning, Wealth Management