You should have a general understanding of the estate administration process when you are engaged in your estate planning efforts. Most people think that they should use a will to facilitate asset transfers, but there are reasons why you may want to go in a different direction. A will is admitted to probate, which is the legal process of estate administration. The executor that is named in the document would be charged with the administrative tasks, and the court would supervise while the … [Read more...] about Can You Use a Transfer on Death Account to Avoid Probate?
There are different ways to facilitate asset transfers after you are gone, and you should understand the options for two related reasons. On one side of the coin, you make informed choices when you understand the facts, and on the other side, you avoid mistakes. With this in mind, we will look at the pros and cons of life estates in this post. Transfer of Real Property You can potentially use a life estate to arrange for the transfer of your home and other types of real property. If you … [Read more...] about An Overview of Life Estates
You sometimes hear bits and pieces of estate planning “advice” that is passed along by people that have good intentions, but they may not see the complete picture. This dynamic will often apply to probate and probate avoidance strategies. If you use a will to express your final wishes with regard to postmortem asset transfers, you would name an executor to act as the administrator. The will would be admitted to probate after your passing, and the court would supervise during the … [Read more...] about Joint Tenancy: A Simple Solution That Can Go Awry
One of the most commonly held misconceptions about estate planning is the idea that you can no longer access or control assets that you convey into a trust. There is some truth in this, because there are irrevocable trusts, and you cannot act as the trustee if you establish this type of trust. However, the revocable living trust is in a different category. You can rescind the trust after the fact, and you can act as the trustee and the beneficiary while you are alive and well. Let’s look … [Read more...] about Why Would You Use a Trust Instead of a Will?
Probate is the legal process of estate administration. If you use a will to direct asset transfers after you are gone, it would be admitted to probate. The executor that you name in the document would take care of the hands-on tasks, and the court would provide supervision. It should be noted that there is a simplified probate process in Connecticut that can potentially be used if the value of the estate is $40,000 or less. Otherwise, the full probate process would be necessary. This … [Read more...] about What Can You Do to Avoid Probate?
Before we address the question that serves as the title this blog post, we should explain why you may want to consider a living trust as the core document in your estate plan. This type of trust is revocable, so if you ever change your mind, you can dissolve the trust and take back direct personal possession of the property. It is unlikely that you will ever want to do so since you are using it as an estate planning device, but this can be comforting for some people. The ongoing control … [Read more...] about Can a Living Trust Be Contested?
Revocable living trusts are a good estate planning solution for many people, and this includes those who would not consider themselves to be wealthy. However, there are things they can and cannot accomplish and we would like to provide some clarity here. A revocable living trust is indeed revocable in a literal sense, so you can change the terms or dissolve the trust if you choose to do so. Most people also act as both the trustee the beneficiary while they are still alive so they retain … [Read more...] about What Living Trusts Do & Do Not Accomplish
People sometimes make assumptions without knowing all the facts. There are those who do not consider the creation of a revocable living trust because they are under the impression that all trusts are only useful for very wealthy individuals. There are trusts that benefit high net worth families that are exposed to estate taxes on the federal and/or state levels. However, these would typically be irrevocable trusts. Revocable living trusts are actually useful for a wide range of people who do … [Read more...] about Why Should I Have a Revocable Living Trust?
You may assume that you should use a last will to arrange for the future distribution of your monetary resources. This is certainly an option that is available to you. Indeed, the last will is the most commonly utilized asset transfer vehicle in the field of estate planning. Though you can use a last will, you should understand the facts. The heirs to the estate do not immediately receive their inheritances when you have a will in place. The executor that you nominate when you create the will … [Read more...] about What Are the Drawbacks of Probate?
The process of probate is going to stand in the way of your heirs and their inheritances if you take no steps to arrange for asset transfers outside of probate. What is probate you ask? Probate is a legal process that allows a court to supervise the administration of an estate. This oversight is positive on the one hand, but probate comes with some negatives as well. For one thing, probate is a time-consuming process. Even if the situation is straightforward and uncomplicated it will take a … [Read more...] about Probate Avoidance in Hartford: Can Probate Be Avoided?