Very rarely do people consider legacy and what will happen after passing. Over the span of a lifetime, an individual can acquire a substantial amount of assets, but after passing how can you ensure your assets are being distributed properly. To ensure appropriate control of your assets, consider updating your estate plan. As Oklahoma City continues to build as a center for economic interest, understanding how your assets will be used can be a hugely beneficial tool. Selecting the perfect plan can seem confusing but here are a few things to consider about each type and how they will affect your estate plan.
Trusts and Wills
It is often a well known fact or given expectation that in the event of someone passing, the will becomes the most important document in understanding the future of one’s assets. If you are considering drafting an estate plan, your estate planning attorney will suggest a will or last testament and a trust as they are the strongest form of estate plans. Courts in Oklahoma City will always attempt to honor a person’s will making it a secure document in the protection of assets and your best friend. So what is a will?
A will or a last testament is a document or rather a list of instructions that explains how your assets will be distributed; how your money will be separated, who controls your property and how your children will be cared for after your death.
Although a will offers a great foundation, it is not enough. Following up your will with a trust helps create a more solid plan in the event of your passing. Wills cannot protect assets from going through Probate. Trusts ensure flexibility and security to your assets. A trust allows for the your assets to be held by a trustee who will ensure it is used for the specified beneficiaries stated in the will. Trusts usually relate to the passing over of property but have been known to relate to other assets too. Hiring an Estate Planning Attorney can help ensure that your wishes are carefully followed and adhered to. So, make sure to have a discussion with your attorney before updating your plan - they can help immensely.
In the event a will has not been created, assets will be turned over to the court for distribution. Oklahoma City law dictates how these assets will be distributed, often honoring prior obligations to banks and other creditors first then directing the remaining assets to family members.
Your Estate Planning Attorney can help by formulating a plan using wills and trusts to reduce or even eliminate the idea of your assets going through Probate Court as the process can be time consuming and incredibly costly for your family members.
Children, especially minors, can be the most at risk after the passing of a parent(s). Establishing guardianships is the best way to plan for the future of your children.
Guardianships can even apply to you. If incapacitated, you might need a guardian to take care of you. Similarly, in caring for a loved one, you might require guardianship to make decisions on their behalf including guardianship of the estate, often called a conservator, via paying bills and managing expenses.
Anything is better than relinquishing your power to the courts to dictate what happen your assets. Take time to establish an estate plan before trouble strikes, you thank your lucky stars and you family will appreciate it greatly.