Are you looking for a way to manage your assets while alive and capable and when incapacitated or dead? Estate planning is the most functional way to do this and with the plan or trust set up, you will know how to hold your assets and how they will be managed in different situations. The trust also lets you know how the asset will be passed on to your loved ones on your demise.
Before setting up, keep in mind the following:
- The set up costs
You need an estate planning attorney with experience in the same. It isn’t an easy process and you have to find an attorney who will provide you with the full value for your money. Check out the packages offers and if there is a flat rate. This will let you know upfront how much you will spend setting up the documents.
- Which documents are needed?
Not all cases are similar. You may choose to prepare documents like the land trust, the living trust, the pour-over wills, an irrevocable trust, certification of trust, last will and testament, durable power of attorney, limited power of attorney, deeds and related documents, and advances directive to physicians. These documents are often comprehensive and you will need a highly experienced lawyer to fill them or prepare them.
- Your marital status
Married couples or single individuals get to fill different kinds of questionnaires in estate planning.
Once you have the estate planned out, and if you choose to fill a living trust, you will get the following benefits:
Avoidance of conservatorship
If you are applying for estate planning, then this has already crossed your mind. A living trust makes it possible for you to determine the person who will manage your assets if you are incapacitated or upon your demise. This saves a lot of money that would be spent in court later. All that is needed is a durable power of attorney.
Avoidance of probate
A living trust makes you avoid probate since the cost of administering trusts isonly a fraction of expenses used in probating wills.
A living trust can involve inclusion of no-contest clauses, governing provisions, or spendthrift clauses, which will help to preserve distribution provisions as well as offering protection against disgruntled beneficiaries.
With mandatory conditions and milestones incorporated in living trust, beneficiaries will be motivated to achieve the set conditions for them to get their entitlement.
Predetermination of persons who will receive assets
Upon your demise, your family may fight over your assets even going to court thus wasting a lot of money in the process. To prevent this from happening, get a living trust. A will doesn’t have the power to provide flexibility on protection of beneficiaries from the claims of creditors or delayed distributions. A living trust is enforceable years after your demise.
In conclusion, you don’t want all you are working hard for to be wasted or mismanaged later. To live comfortably and to have your assets managed well when you are incapacitated or on your demise, get a lawyer to help you plan your estate. This also prevents fights between siblings, spouses or business associates.
Maria Sinatra is a San Diego based attorney with vast experience in estate planning. She has received several awards for her exemplary service and she is the co-founder of a leading Business Law firm. Check her LinkedIn profile for more information about estate planning and trusts.