Estate planning could seem like an easy task. It is for this reason that most people begin the process once they become senior citizens. Unknown to them, estate planning is a delicate and long-term process that should commence at the earliest possible stage. Below is an article discussing the various elements of estate planning.
Wills are a centrepiece in every estate management plan since they determine how the testator shares out their estate among the beneficiaries. Although wills are easy to write, it would be wise to engage the services of an estate planning lawyer. The professional will assess your situation and give suggestions on how to write the will and divide the estate. For instance, if you think beneficiaries could contest a specific property, you could exempt it from the probate process by establishing joint ownership with your preferred beneficiary. The lawyer will also ensure that the will meets the required legal standard. Besides, they will amend the will to reflect your current financial and personal situations.
Trusts are ideal when the testator needs to determine how assets passed to beneficiaries are used. Typically, your lawyer will advise you on the various types of trusts, their benefits, and shortcomings. For instance, a family trust would be ideal if you want your spouse to manage a portion of the estate on behalf of your kids. This trust gives the trustee absolute power since they can decide how to use and distribute proceeds from the trust. On the other hand, a unit trust would be ideal when you want the beneficiaries to benefit directly from the trust. It limits the trustee's powers and prescribes how the trust proceeds will be divided among the beneficiaries.
Preparing Executors And Trustees
A mistake made by most testators is failing to prepare the executors and trustees of their estate. The executor plays an essential part since they take charge of the probate process. Your lawyer can advise your executor on how to file for probate, pay estate taxes and divide property among the beneficiaries. Moreover, they will equip the trustee will some estate management skills to ensure that they have an easy time managing assets put under a trust.
You now have extensive knowledge of the various components of an estate management plan. An estate planning lawyer will help out with every aspect of estate planning. Look around for an estate planning lawyer to help you with your estate.