If you were to use a will to express your final wishes with regard to your asset distribution choices, you would name an executor in the document. This person or entity would not be able to act independently. The will would be admitted to probate, and the court would provide supervision during the administration process. During probate, final debts are paid, including taxes. The court examines the will to determine its validity, and if anyone wants to issue a challenge, they could make their … [Read more...] about What Are the Drawbacks of Probate?
People often assume that a last will is the right asset transfer vehicle if you are not a multimillionaire. In fact, this assertion is patently false. It is true that there are different types of trusts that are used by high net worth individuals that are concerned about the estate tax. This being stated, there are other trusts that can be used by people of relatively ordinary means. One of them that is the right choice for a wide range of individuals is the revocable living trust, and we … [Read more...] about Living Trusts Provide Multiple Benefits
Blog Author: Stephen C. Hartnett, J.D., LL.M. (Tax), Director of Education, American Academy of Estate Planning Attorneys, Inc. Often, people think they’ll have a warning before death and they’ll be able to plan once they get the warning. They think of life almost like a traffic signal. They think they are born with a green light. When they get old or get a serious illness it turns yellow. When death is imminent, the light turns red and they die. They think they’ll plan once the light turns … [Read more...] about Planning for the Unexpected
Blog Author: Stephen C. Hartnett, J.D., LL.M. (Tax), Director of Education, American Academy of Estate Planning Attorneys, Inc. Whether or not we plan to do so, each of us will face death eventually. However, by planning, we can make our passing easier and better in many ways for those we leave behind. This is the first of a series on the ways we can ease the transition through planning. This first article focuses on privacy. The next article will focus on how you leave assets to your loved … [Read more...] about Many Reasons to Plan
Blog Author: Stephen C. Hartnett, J.D., LL.M. (Tax), Director of Education, American Academy of Estate Planning Attorneys, Inc. Sometimes people seem to think that if they don’t plan for death, it just won’t happen. In fact, 58% of American adults have no will, no trust, and no estate plan at all, according to a recent study by Caring.com. Unfortunately, whether you plan for it or not, death is inevitable. If you have no plan, your state of residence has a plan for you, it’s called … [Read more...] about Planning is Critical
Blog Author: Stephen C. Hartnett, J.D., LL.M. (Tax), Director of Education, American Academy of Estate Planning Attorneys, Inc. There are many good reasons to use trusts: Trusts avoid the probate process, which is a public process to change title of assets from the deceased person to the new recipient. Trusts may be helpful in tax planning. Specialized irrevocable trusts may be helpful in qualifying for Medicaid/Medi-Cal. Trusts are helpful to manage your assets during your … [Read more...] about Trusts for Privacy
by Justin M. Kennedy, Attorney at Law Litherland, Kennedy & Associates, APC, Attorneys at Law Recently I met with a client, Tammy, who wanted to immediately gift her home to her son, Eugene. Even though Tammy already had a comprehensive estate plan with our office that included a Living Trust, Tammy had talked with her friends who suggested gifting the home now was in her best interests. When I asked more questions, Tammy shared that one of her friends, Mike, had died without a Living Trust … [Read more...] about Gift Now or Let Them Inherit?
If you would like to learn more about revocable living trusts, attend one of our free living trust seminars: https://www.attorneyoffice.com/seminars/ … [Read more...] about Why Would I Want a Revocable Living Trust?
Living Trusts are an excellent vehicle of asset transfer. They assist you in avoiding probate and legal quagmires, and protect your privacy. It’s important to receive solid estate planning guidance before making final decisions regarding what estate planning documents are appropriate for you, and to carefully weigh the benefits and potential drawbacks. To assist you in learning more about revocable living trusts, we invite you to attend one of our free living trust seminars. Click here to view … [Read more...] about Benefits of a Revocable Living Trust
You have choices when planning your estate. You are not required to utilize a last will to direct the distribution of your assets after your death. Instruments such as revocable living trusts are viable options and they are not exclusively for the wealthy. Your estate must be probated when you use a last will as your primary asset transfer vehicle. Probate comes with considerable costs. Depending on the overall value of your estate and its relative complexity, the costs associated with … [Read more...] about Estate Planning – You Have Choices