Estate planning laws can be pretty complicated. Any proceeding related to making a will or trust and estate planning can be overwhelming. Some people think that estate administration is all about transferring and distributing property by writing a will. There is, however, a lot more to that.
If you need legal advice on making a will or establishing a trust, or if you need to clarify what the legal terms trustee, executor, or guardianship mean, consult with our knowledgeable St. George Utah estate planning attorneys today. You must take trusts, wills, and estates very seriously, so make sure you get professional legal aid.
The Estate Planning Process
An estate is generally defined as everything that a deceased person owns, including real property, personal property, property in joint tenancy, life insurance, among others. One will likely create a will for these things. However, it is crucial to seek supervision from a local attorney who has the experience and commitment to work on your case. Do not commit the mistakes of those who decided to simply write a will and appoint heirs without a reliable estate lawyer supervising your estate plan.
Drafting a will, for instance, often allows an individual to indicate who will take care of their minor children or inherit one’s estate assets. This could also include appointing a personal representative, fiduciaries, business succession, and many other things. Revocable trusts, meanwhile, are often prepared to indicate who will be in charge of an individual’s affairs, whether during life or after death. Estate assets continue to grow for the benefit of trust beneficiaries. It all depends on what you need and what you want to do with what you have.
Last Wills and Testaments
The legal process of setting up a last will and testament is not easy to understand fully. What makes this topic even more difficult is the preconceived notion that wills are simply about the final wishes. This is not the case. Without considering the probate code, a testator cannot simply distribute the inheritance to an heir or loved one. Here, consulting with reliable St. George Utah estate planning lawyers is key.
Drafting wills is drafting a legal document, and an experienced estate attorney can make sure pertinent state laws are followed. Testamentary capacity, the number of witnesses, and other procedural requirements related to creating these legal documents must be carefully considered. Otherwise, your loved ones might face unnecessary stress when you pass away.
Testamentary and Living Trusts
Trust documents, on the other hand, enable a trustor to instruct a trusted family member, loved one, or other entity on what they want to happen to estate property. These legal documents help ensure that estate assets will not be probated after death. This means that beneficiaries of the trust will be able to avoid probate proceedings and having to go through probate court.
There are two types of trust. In particular, through a living trust, grantors can appoint a trustee who shall manage and administer trust assets, both before and when you die. This is in contrast to a testamentary trust, which is created through the last will and testament of the deceased person. Here, seeking legal services from experienced estate planning attorneys ensures that your surviving spouse, children, or even grandchildren will succeed in avoiding probate when you die.
Powers of Attorney for Finances or Health
Pursuant to relevant estate law, a financial power of attorney for finances is an important document that gives another individual the capacity to act on your behalf, especially for legal matters. In the absence of one, a family member will likely go through the probate process. Here, a conservator appointed by the probate court will manage your affairs. This arrangement is seldom ideal.
Meanwhile, powers of attorney for health give another individual the capacity to decide on questions related to medical issues and treatment. When you cannot make decisions for yourself, the appointed patient advocate will be the one to do it for you. For this reason, a power of attorney for health is sometimes also called an advanced directive or a patient advocate designation. In the absence of this estate planning document, a guardian will be appointed under probate law instead.
Seeking Legal Advice from a Trusted Estate Planning Attorney
Your estate is a product of your hard work. Do not be lax and ensure your assets are well taken care of, both while you are still living and when you pass away. Seeking legal help is especially useful when you designate or add beneficiaries, record bank account details, and file required tax returns. Additionally, a probate lawyer will especially be helpful if you find yourself in a situation where you have to deal with probate matters.
An estate planning law attorney can help with your questions on estate taxes, trusts and wills, probate, and estate planning. Contact a trusted Utah estate planning law firm today. Consult with our St. George, Utah estate planning attorney at Boyack Christiansen Legal Solutions for reliable legal services.