Frequently Asked Questions

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A last will's main benefit is its simplicity. Anyone can write a last will. The drawback is that probate filings are public, allowing people to look at your assets and if you have property in multiple states you have to do multiple or ancillary probates. A living trust, on the other hand, can be used to transfer property and assets to beneficiaries without going through the probate process. This keeps your estate assets private and can be more efficient depending on the nature of your assets.

Most probates are inexpensive and trouble free. When wills are contested, or people argue, then that can change. Also, complicated estates with assets in different estates can be less efficient and more costly.

Yes, in many states your real property such as a home can be transferred through a Transfer on Death Deed. Your bank account and insurance can pass through a pay on death designation. These tools, while efficient and inexpensive, can leave property out and many lawyers suggest you have a simple will to cover property you own that these forms might miss and or you might miss when filling out forms. Whether you use these forms with or without a simple will, they will not control personal property such as furniture or heirlooms. That property can pass. In most instances by a personal property list filled out and signed.

If you're unsure what you need to protect your family, consult a lawyer. The most important thing is that you don't neglect planning your estate. It's the best way to protect your loved ones and make sure your assets are distributed according to your wishes.

When someone dies without leaving a will, their assets are probated or passed via the courts to be distributed according to intestacy laws. To put it another way, the assets of a deceased individual will be dispersed according to state rules, not necessarily according to the decedent's preferences. Each state's laws differ, but money and other assets usually go to the spouse first.

Their assets are distributed by the probate court in accordance with the last will and testament and the law.

No, a person can make a last will and testament to dispose of any assets worth $10 million or more. The distribution of those assets, of course, may have tax ramifications. As a result, while making estate planning decisions, it's critical to understand how inheritance will be taxed. Estate planning consultants are often recommended, especially for big or intricate estates.

The last will and testament is used to dispose of assets after a person's death. A living will can be used to give health-care directives ahead of time, such as whether or not life support should be employed.