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The limits of a Ben Franklin money maxim

You may have learned Benjamin Franklin’s old maxim: “In this world nothing is certain except death and taxes.”

portrait of Ben Franklin

A Margaret Mitchell character echoed those words in Gone with the Wind: “Death, taxes and childbirth! There’s never a convenient time for any of them.”

Even if death and taxes can be delayed — unlike childbirth — both are not necessarily certain.

While death is inevitable, definitely HIGH taxes are not!

Columbia law professor George Cooper submits in his book, A Voluntary Tax, that unnecessarily high tax bills are likely due to either: 1) Taxpayer Indifference or 2) Poor Planning Advice.

By avoiding excessive taxes, many successful people can accumulate much more than others. They work with professional wealth specialists experienced in matters of income tax and capital gains, and reducing income taxes even at death.

Always pay your fair share … tax evasion is illegal, of course.

Tax avoidance, on the other hand, is completely LEGAL.

Supreme Court Chief Justice Learned Hand famously declared in an important case: “Anyone may so arrange his affairs so that his taxes shall be as low as possible; he is not bound to choose that pattern which will best pay the Treasury; there is not even a patriotic duty to increase one’s taxes.”

Franklin may have been right in his own time, but his adage is only partly right today. Some taxes — at least high taxes — aren’t certain!

Meet with a professional wealth specialist to see if the taxes you pay may be keeping you from retiring sooner or living better in your retirement years or from making a better impact for your family or your community.