Tricky Estate Planning Items to pass to your Heirs

Estate Planning – Tricky items to pass to your heirs

Below is a great article on items that can be a bit tricky to pass to your heirs.  These things are difficult given that the rules can be arcane, or the actual possession can be difficult (like a dog; can a dog be happy in the city if it has spent its whole life in the country?).

See more below.

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The Trickiest Items to Pass On to Your Heirs

So you’ve finally made an estate plan. Your kids get a nice inheritance, your nephew gets the baseball cards, and your cousin gets Grandma’s ring. But with some assets, it’s not that easy to impose your will. Here are a few that can cause surprise headaches”and how to handle them.

Vacation Homes

Sharing is hard. Conflicts can arise when one sibling lives farther away, earns less, or wants to sell his share, says Tracy Craig, an estate-planning attorney in Worcester, Mass. “One of the worst things to do is to leave property outright in equal shares,” she says. “Anytime you have more than one person who owns real estate, you have a potential problem.”

The fix: Talk to your kids first to learn their preferences, then put the real estate in a trust and make your heirs the beneficiaries, Craig says. The trust structure lets you spell out under what conditions the house can be sold, how a sharing schedule will be decided, and who pays for upkeep. If possible, reduce conflict by leaving extra money to cover costs.

Pets

Until recently, provisions that left money to pets were often unenforceable, says Gerry Beyer, a law professor at Texas Tech University. If you gave your friend Jack $10,000 to take care of your dog, what was to stop Jack from taking your money and abandoning Lassie?

The fix: Every state except Minnesota has now passed a “pet trust” law, which means if you add a simple line to your will explaining who takes the pet and how much money is provided for its care, probate court will appoint someone to enforce the provision, Beyer says. Want absolute control? Draft a detailed pet trust. (Your estate attorney may not even charge extra.) Name the caretaker and the trustee, set aside money for food and vet bills, and leave care instructions. Technically, the trust will own your pet, so if the caretaker doesn’t meet your standards, the trustee can assign care elsewhere.

Airline Miles

Frequent-flier miles can be worth a tidy sum, but you might not be able to pass on the wealth. Some carriers explicitly say you cannot bequeath miles. And policies change; Delta disallowed mileage bequests in 2013.

The fix: First, ask your airline. You might be better off spending down miles now, Beyer says, buying trips for other people if you’re traveling less. (Avoid transferring miles, as you can quickly rack up fees.) But even carriers that officially bar fliers from bequeathing miles”like American Airlines”often allow it on a case-by-case basis, so do name a conditional beneficiary in your will. Heirs may need to request and complete an affidavit and provide the death certificate.

Estate Planning Lawyers in Leawood

Estate Planning is really about assurance. What estate planning is everything about is discovering the right tools to implement your basic requirements. What that indicates is that we make use of the most advanced legal files to properly execute your desires. We customize each and every strategy so that you get precisely what you desire. We do this making use of the most up to date tools so that we can prepare a personalized strategy at the lowest possible cost. Please call us today with any concerns.
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The Eastman Law Firm is an estate planning law firm. We focus on estate planning so that you can be assured that you are getting the most up to date strategies.

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The Eastman Law Firm
Estate planning attorneys, focusing on Wills, Trusts and Probate law.
4901 W. 136th Street, Ste. 240
Leawood
KANSAS (KS)
66224
United States

Phone: (913) 908-9113

Hours:
Mon-Sat 8am – 5:30pm

See our directory page here and here.

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A Good Primer on Trusts

The Big Three Types of Trusts

Leawood – 3 types of trusts.  There are three major types of trusts.  They are revocable trusts, which are also called Living Trusts.  These is the main type of trust that most people think about.  The second type is irrevocable trusts, which are trusts that cannot be amended.  Finally, there are trusts created by a will, called a Testamentary Trust.  See the article below for more.

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Understanding the 3 primary types of trusts

Whether you’re looking to avoid probate, limit possible estate taxes or assume greater control over how your estate is distributed after you pass, there a number of benefits that adding a trust to your estate plan can provide you and your loved ones.

Since there are a number of different types of trusts, one of the biggest challenges is knowing how each type differs, what goals a particular trust can help you accomplish and whether you even need a trust in your estate plan. To help you get started on understanding the options available, here’s an overview the three primary classes of trusts.

Revocable Trusts

A revocable trust (also known as a living trust) is used to avoid having your estate subject to probate”the legal process of distributing your estate. Probate can be a lengthy, expensive and public process, making it a suboptimal route for your heirs when administering your estate.

Utilizing a revocable trust can be especially effective if you own property in multiple states. For instance, if you own a home here in Iowa and have a cabin in northern Minnesota, you may be subject to probate in both states when you pass. However, if those two properties are owned inside of a revocable trust, you’ll likely be able to avoid probate entirely, thus making the process of administering your estate quicker and less costly.

Irrevocable Trusts

Contrary to revocable trusts, assets in an irrevocable trust can’t be removed or amended after they’ve been placed in the trust. Since you’ve relinquished control of assets placed in an irrevocable trust, they are effective removed from your estate, thereby protecting you from possible estate taxes.

There are many different types of irrevocable trusts. One common example, the irrevocable life insurance trust (ILIT) is a life insurance policy whose death benefits can be paid out to your heirs or help cover the costs of administering your estate without incurring any taxes.

Testamentary Trusts

Rather than creating and funding a trust immediately, it’s possible to create a trust that goes into effect upon your death. Known as a testamentary trust, this type of trust is created through a will and the terms of the trust are spelled out within the will. Testamentary trusts are often used as a tool that can help you create a trust for minor children. Even though assets in a testamentary trust may be subject to probate, the flexibility this type of trust offers when assigning a trustee may outweigh its costs.

Before going ahead and adding a trust to your estate plan, it’s important to remember that setting up a trust can be quite expensive. Talk with your financial advisor or an estate planning attorney to ensure a trust makes sense for you before adding one to your estate plan.

 Estate Planning Lawyers in Leawood

Estate Planning is really about peace of mind. What estate planning is everything about is finding the right tools to implement your basic needs. What that indicates is that we make use of the most advanced legal documents to effectively implement your desires. We personalize each and every strategy so that you get exactly what you desire. We do this using the most recent devices so that we can prepare a personalized strategy at the lowest possible cost. Kindly call us today with any concerns.
http://ift.tt/1EzK673
The Eastman Law Firm is an estate planning law practice. We focus on estate planning so that you can be assured that you are getting the most up to date methods.

http://ift.tt/1JU4Bfo


The Eastman Law Firm
Estate planning attorneys, focusing on Wills, Trusts and Probate law.
4901 W. 136th Street, Ste. 240
Leawood
KANSAS (KS)
66224
United States

Phone: (913) 908-9113

Hours:
Mon-Sat 8am – 5:30pm

See our directory page here and here.