Protecting Your Assets: Wills And Trusts
Deciding What Will Happen After Your Death
Often, the first thought when considering an estate plan is, “I need a will.” Sometimes that is true, and a simple will is able to meet all your needs. However, it is not the only option. You need to consider what will happen after your death, including things like:
- What your heirs will need to undergo to obtain their inheritance
- How private you would like to keep proceedings
- How comfortable you are with estate taxes
The answers to these questions may change what you need for your estate plan. A good estate planning lawyer knows the implications that these questions can have, and can help you plan your documents accordingly.
Making An Educated Choice About Your Estate
At Gonzalez Law, PLLC, we know that estate plans should be customized to meet your exact needs. Things like wills, trusts, transfer on death deeds and other documents all have pros and cons, and can be used in certain ways to achieve certain results, including protecting your assets.
For instance, a trust may be the right choice if you have a lot of assets and would like to protect them from estate taxes. It may also be the right choice if you would like to keep proceedings very private. Wills are a matter of public record, which means that anyone can uncover the contents of your estate by viewing your will. Furthermore, all wills must go through probate court, which is open to the public as well. If you have a will, or if you die without any estate plan, your family must go through probate court to adjudicate the matter.
If your primary goal is to preserve your residence for your loved ones, the proper transfer on death deed may be able to allow this asset to pass, just like a bank account or other financial asset, outside of probate. Avoiding probate may be wise, as it can be an expensive and lengthy process.
A trust is also able to help you plan for the possibility of becoming incapacitated someday, by assigning a trustee to manage not only your estate after death, but also your estate if you become incapacitated to the point of being unable to manage your own finances in life. The property will not pass to your heirs in that case, but it will be managed by the trustee on your behalf.
Talk To A Seasoned Estate Planning Attorney Today
The estate planning process can seem complicated, but it does not need to be. A skilled legal team can help you arrange your estate exactly how you would like it, and our founding attorney Joe Gonzalez also has the benefit of being a certified public accountant, so he can offer his professional advice in that matter regarding your estate, as well. To discuss your case with him, call our Fort Worth office at 817-349-7730 today.
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