Think of your life as a business. If you were selling a business, you would hire a broker to help you. When you no longer need your belongings, a trust and estate planning attorney helps ensure they go where you want them to. You’ve spent years acquiring assets, building up equity in relationships, and maintaining an estate of physical and emotional property that you want to be able to leave in the best care when you no longer need it.
Structuring your life like a business can show you why your estate planning attorney is vital – because your estate plan is vital. Who will benefit from your hard work? Are you sure that the people or organizations that you want to become caretakers of your assets will become caretakers of your assets? Don’t wonder – make it happen.
An Estate Plan Protects Your Loved Ones
After a death, even when a person has a last will and testament in place, the state will want to examine the person’s belongings and assets – known as the person’s “estate” – to determine its taxable value. Some property, such as “real estate” – which is estate properties with “real” properties attached, such as land and houses – can be eligible for state and federal taxes when its ownership changes. Even when that change is due to someone’s death.
Protect Your Beneficiaries
Who are your beneficiaries? Who are the people you want to leave your belongings to? The people who will become the caretakers of your property and able to benefit from it? You obviously want to protect them, and speaking with a trust and estate planning attorney can help you do that. If you leave the property value designation up to someone else, namely, the state, your loved ones are eligible to be at risk to have to pay more than necessary for the property they receive.
Reduce their stress
And of course, they’ll be in the middle of grieving, dealing with a traumatic life-changing event. Do you want them to have to endure the emotional stress of probate while they could be going through a difficult emotional time? Of course not.
Protect Your Property
In some cases, property that you’ve worked hard to acquire, maintain, grow, and advance, could become property of the state or of a neutral third party whom you didn’t delegate. Then, it’s at risk of being completely mistreated! If you’ve worked hard your whole life to acquire a house, other real estate properties, business investments, or even international properties and investments, you want to make sure that it ends up in the hands of someone who will care about managing it well and won’t mismanage it and squander your hard work. A trust and estate planning attorney can help you do this – ensure that your property ends up in the best hands to manage and maintain your legacy through it.
Reduce Estate Taxes
Overall, the bottom line of speaking with an attorney is to make sure that all your paperwork is set up well enough so that the tax burden is reduced for your beneficiaries. The people who receive your property after your death, the people who can become ensured to it through the estate structure, will ultimately have to pay some amount of taxes, and may be responsible for ensuring that the property passes from them to the next person with minimal tax transfers when that happens. However, if you make it as easy as possible for them at the beginning, they can keep it going.
Ensure Future Help from Your Trust and Estate Planning Attorney
The best part of having an established relationship with an attorney during the estate planning process is that person becomes a quick and easy reference for your beneficiaries to utilize during the estate transfer. Your attorney should be able to answer all their questions and help them transition into setting up the estate how it will be most beneficial to them, including looking ahead to make it a part of their own estate.
Considerations for the Best Trust and Estate Planning Attorney
Choose an attorney with plenty of experience all types of estate planning. Someone who has seen different types of situations before will know how to handle yours, and you can be assured they will be able to handle anything that comes up in the future. The best trust and estate planning attorneys haven’t necessarily done it all yet, but they’re willing to learn how to handle anything that comes their way.