The most commonly used methods of planning for the future are Wills and Trusts, which give guidelines for the care and distribution of your property and assets.
Wills and Trusts as Part of a Proper Estate Plan
A will or testament is a legal document that declares who receives the estate in the event of death. Property will transfer from the deceased to another party who is named in the will.
A trust is the legal process by which a trustee holds or distributes assets for the benefit of beneficiaries. A trust may allow assets to avoid probate and in some cases will reduce the estate tax which would otherwise be paid. There are a variety of different types of wills and trusts.
While wills specify who you would like to receive your assets, trusts are the tool of choice for preserving those assets. Trusts can allow you to minimize or even eliminate estate taxes while also limiting probate costs for your beneficiaries.
A trust is a separate legal entity into which you place assets. Under this arrangement, a person or entity legally holds property for the benefit of another. The person, or entity, holding the property is known as the trustee. The person for whom the property is held is the beneficiary.
A trust can be created to take effect immediately, upon your incapacity, or only upon your death. It may be revocable or permanent and irrevocable.
Wills and trusts guarantee that your estate is in order and assets will be protected, and prevents your loved ones from having to go through the hassle of expensive probate court.
Setting Up Wills and Trusts To Protect Your Assets
An estate planning lawyer can set up a trust according to your personal wishes and also:
- Protect assets from creditors
- Reduce estate tax and income taxes
- Provide for management of your assets if you are incapacitated
- Time distributions to heirs after your death — such as when they reach a specified age
- Protect funds from irresponsible spending by family members
- Keep assets in the family — such as preventing them from being lost to a child’s spouse in a divorce
- Allocate assets to heirs, especially if more than one marriage creates more than one family to support
- Make charitable gifts on favorable tax terms
- Dedicate funds to a particular use (such as a child’s education)
- Avoid probate
Port St Lucie Fl Attorney Diana Goldman P/A.
At The Law Offices of Diana Goldman, P.A. we are here to help you create a proper estate plan, including wills and trusts. Call Diana today at 772 – 335 – 0965.