CLE Publication: Many Practical Issues That You Must Be Aware Of When Dealing With Retirement Assets

Many Practical Issues That You Must Be Aware Of When Dealing With Retirement Assets

Revised Edition 2023
By Seymour Goldberg

Many taxpayers have accumulated a considerable amount of wealth in their retirement account arrangements. Estate and income tax planning as well as asset protection planning with retirement type assets are extremely important.

This Guide covers many practical issues that you need to be aware of including avoiding unintended beneficiaries of retirement accounts and systemic IRA beneficiary blunders. Mistakes are often made and can lead to headaches and be costly.

Most importantly, this Guide includes the new IRS penalty rules under the SECURE 2.0 Act of 2022 which every practitioner must know about.


This Guide will include the following topics:

  • Common Errors in Retirement Distribution Planning

  • Why Many Beneficiary Forms are Defective

  • Unintended Beneficiaries of Retirement Accounts

  • Important IRA Beneficiary State Court Cases (Includes IRA Beneficiary Malpractice Case)

  • Customized Sample Beneficiary Forms

  • Advantages of Trusts as IRA beneficiary

  • Disadvantages of Trusts as IRA beneficiary

  • IRA beneficiaries and unpaid estate tax liabilities

  • Creditor Rights and Inherited IRAs under State law

  • Danger Zone article on creditor rights when an IRA is payable to a revocable trust

  • IRA Custodial Agreements and Default Beneficiaries

  • Waiver of Penalty Rules Under SECURE

  • Special Separate Account Rules when there are multiple beneficiaries of a deceased IRA owner’s account

  • What Happens when Attorneys and other Self-Employed Individuals with Keogh Plans die without nominating a Successor to take charge of the Keogh Plan

  • Major Change in Required Beginning Date

  • Major IRS Penalty Changes Under SECURE 2.0 Act of 2022 (This provision will create IRS compliance headaches for every tax preparer whose clients fail to take timely required minimum distributions from qualified retirement plans including IRAs)

  • Major IRS Statute of Limitation Changes Under SECURE 2.0 Act of 2022

  • Comment Letter to Treasury Department Involving an Oversight in Drafting Conduit Trusts

  • Comment Letter to Treasury Department Involving Systemic IRA Trust Noncompliance Issue that can have a major adverse effect on an IRA Trust

About the Author

SEYMOUR GOLDBERG CPA, MBA, JD, is a senior partner in the law firm of Goldberg & Goldberg, P.C., Melville, New York. Professor Emeritus of Law and Taxation at Long Island University. Former Director of the Tax Institute of the C.W. Post Campus of Long Island University. Recipient of the American Jurisprudence Award in Federal Estate and Gift Taxation from St. John’s University School of Law.

Mr. Goldberg handles probate matters, tax disputes with the IRS and the IRS appeals office, IRA penalty waivers and New York State Department of Taxation tax disputes. Represents clients in IRS ruling requests (over 75).

Authored 4 manuals for the American Bar Association on IRAs and on Trusts as well as for other organizations. His manuals can be found in over 100 law school libraries. He is a member of the Relations with the IRS Committee of the New York State Society of CPAs. He was formerly associated with the Internal Revenue Service.

He is the recipient of Outstanding Discussion Leader Awards from both the AICPA and the Foundation for Accounting Education. He was quoted in the New York Times, Forbes, Fortune, Money Magazine, U.S. News & World Report, Business Week and the Wall Street Journal, and interviewed on CNN, CNBC and WCBS.


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