Estate Planning with an LLC

With the widespread adoption of limited liability company acts by state legislatures, limited liability companies (LLC) have become the business organization of choice for small closely held businesses. An LLC also provides tax advantages to transfer wealth from one generation to another while allowing the donor to maintain control over over the assets until death..


An LLC consists of members and managers. It can be structured like a limited partnership, with the members being passive investors and the managers actively managing the company. The concepts of wealth transfer are the same for LLCs and limited partnerships: The generation transferring the wealth (the parents) forms an LLC, making themselves both managers and members. The generation receiving the wealth (the children) are made members of the company. Initially, the parents hold all of the membership interest in the company along with the assets it represents. Over time, the membership interest is gifted to the children, within allowable gift tax amounts, and the parents retain the control of the company and its assets as the managers. LLCs can be structured to allow flexibility to accommodate income distribution issues and restrictions on transfers of interests

Laws on Estate Planning

In Washington, many laws concerning estate planning are found in Title 11 (Probate and Trust law) of the Revised Code of Washington (RCW). Additional laws may be found in Title 26 (Domestic Relations), Title 63 (Personal Property), Title 64 (Real Property), Title 68 (Cemeteries Morgues and Human Remains), Title 70 (Public Health and Safety), Title 83 (Estate Taxation). You may also need to look at Federal Laws.

Estate Plannin3

White Bluffs Bladderpod.

Help request- for all of you along rivers or streams, please keep your eyes open for bladderpods. If you see a population, please let me know so we can have someone come check it out. Specifically looking for this plant along the Snake River into Idaho and Montana. Bladderpods need to look similar to the White Bluffs Bladderpod.

Bladder Pod

Boundary Line Adjustments- the ins and outs


Many times neighbors realize that what they thought was there boundary line really isn’t. With modern technology, it is much easier for lay people, and surveyors, to find an accurate boundary line for a person’s property. The invention of GPS is both good and bad, you now know what you really have. The Courts have had to deal with this issue by coming up with rulings to figure out who the true owner of a property is. Adverse possession and acquiescence are two of the main theories to try and determine the legal boundaries of a person’s land. These theories deserve articles of their own and won’t be dealt with in this article. Many times a fence line or other monument is what all property owners thought was the property line and it isn’t. In the Columbia Basin, due to the fact that parcels are not round, many times an irrigation circle will go over the property line onto a neighbors piece of property. In dealing with this issue, legislators passes WAC 458-61A-109 to deal with boundary line adjustments. Boundary line adjustments are a method to make minor changes to existing property lines between two or more contiguous parcels, meaning that the parcels must be touching where the change occurs. A few examples of common boundary line adjustments are the following, which are used as examples in WAC 458-61A-109:

(i) Moving a property line to follow an existing fence line;

(ii) Moving a property line around a structure to meet required setbacks;

(iii) Moving a property line to remedy a boundary line dispute;

(iv) Moving a property line to adjust property size and/or shape for owner convenience; and

(v) Selling a small section of property to an adjacent property owner.
Boundary line adjustments can’t be used in every case. For example if you are in the county and your lot size is already the minimum required, unless the neighbor agrees to do a trade, it may not be the answer you are looking for to remedy a problem. Boundary line adjustments must follow the legal requirements for your area, such as your county, city, and/or state. There is usually a process, and most times a surveyor is strongly advised, if not required. Most areas also require a deed to transfer the property that must be filed with the Auditor. To work up that deed, you may need an attorney. The survey map and the deed must both be filed, and any easements, restrictions, covenants, etc that go with the property need to be spelled out on said documents.
Boundary line adjustments are an excellent tool that are oftentimes overlooked as a solution. Cheaper than a lawsuit, easier than a lawsuit, and the answer that may save your relationship with your neighbor.


Here are the basics of a 1031


I have been working on 1031 exchanges for many years. Here are the basics of a 1031-

The key advantage of a Section 1031 exchange is the ability to sell a property without paying any capital gain tax, or depreciation recapture at closing, which allows the earning power of the deferred taxes to work for the benefit of the investor.

Although Section 1031 refers to “an exchange of property”, it does not require a simultaneous “swap” of properties. A Qualified Intermediary “QI” is an entity who enters into a written agreement with the taxpayer (“exchanger”) to acquire the exchanger’s rights and/or ownership interest in the property the exchanger is selling (“relinquished property”), and transfer such ownership interest into one or more properties of “like-kind” that the exchanger chooses to buy (“replacement property”). A QI is required by tax law and provides a safe harbor for the taxpayer (exchanger). I use Custom 1031 in Spokane as the QI for almost all 1031 exchanges that go through my office.

In other words, the intermediary is “assigned in” as the seller of the property during the closing process. It is the assignment that allows the seller to become an exchanger and, essentially convert an otherwise taxable sale and subsequent purchase of investment real estate into a tax-deferred exchange.

Because the intermediary is technically the seller who receives the sale proceeds, it prevents the exchanger from being in “actual or constructive receipt” of the proceeds; thus, there is nothing to tax.


Your counsel can only prepare for any circumstance if he/she knows all of the facts. Normally, surprises are going to harm your case not help it. Your attorney is there to assist you, so divulge all information pertaining to the situation. Your attorney may ask you questions that you do not think are relevant or that you might think are personal, but remember, they are there to ensure that you have the best outcome.


Act in a timely Fashion

gg61049176If you find yourself in a sticky situation, whether you need legal counsel or just advice, the sooner you seek help the better off you will be. The longer you wait the longer the opposing counsel has to build a case against you or maybe just for some documents to get lost. Typically, your counsel will need time to review the case.

Have a Question and Answer session

Make sure you are comfortable with your attorney and that they can explain the legal lingo to you if you do not understand it. Any attorney who cannot or will not take the time to answer your questions clearly and accurately is not to be trusted.