It is never easy to estate plan. For one, estate planning involves uncomfortable decisions about how your assets will be divided following your death. Estate planning, however, is critical because it avoids a number of serious obstacles including family disputes, additional taxes, and the probate process. Despite the potential to solve the numerous problems that would otherwise, some people still believe that estate planning should only be performed by the extremely wealthy. Instead, estate planning tools including trusts can be a particularly valuable tool for individuals. As a result, this article examines some of the advantages that people frequently realize by creating trusts.
# 1 – Trusts Help Outline How Assets Are Received
One of the primary benefits of creating trusts is that they allow individuals to exercise control over how their assets are divided following their death. By spelling out exactly how assets should be divided, a person can avoid any unnecessary disputes that might later arise among family members. When younger children are involved, trusts are capable of outlining the age and condition that children must be to receive assets.
# 2 – Trusts Can Be Used in Conjunction with Government Programs
If a child is disabled or special needs and receives benefits through Medicare or the Social Security program, some forms of trusts are still capable of passing assets. Instead, payments made through these trusts must be related to maintaining a beneficiary’s health or comfort. As a results, trusts can be an excellent way to plan for the care of a special needs child following the parent’s death.
# 3 – Trusts Remove Family Disputes
For blend families as well as for individuals who have been previously married, trusts remove any of the uncertainty about how assets should be distributed. If assets pass to probate process, there is a good possibility that things can become particularly difficult and lead to serious disputes among family members. Not only do trusts help to avoid family disputes, they also help to make sure that any matters between a family are kept private.
# 4 – Trusts Help to Avoid Probate
Probate is a legal process during which a will is declared valid and can lead to a process that takes several months. Depending on your estate and the complexity of the issues that are involved, probate has the potential to reduce 5% of a person’s estate. By creating a trust that allows a person to specify exactly how their estate will be distributed to beneficiaries, a person is able to bypass the probate process. Other ways to avoid probate include jointly owned property and payable on death transfers.
Speak with an Experienced Estate Planning Lawyer
Trusts have substantial tax and financial effects if not properly planned or executed, which means that professional help is often essential. If you or a loved one is interested in creating a trust or any other type of estate planning document, you should not hesitate to speak with a knowledgeable attorney. Contact Ettinger Law Firm today to speak with an experienced lawyer.