Although a Last Will and Testament remains the most common way to distribute an estate, a significant number of people choose to use a trust in lieu of, or in addition to, a Will to distribute their estate. If you are named as a beneficiary of a trust, it usually means you are entitled to distributions from the trust according to the terms created by the Settlor. What does it mean though if you receive a “Crummy notice?” Let's find out more about a Crummy notice and what to do if you receive … [Read more...] about What Is a Crummey Notice?
If one of your loved ones has a substance abuse problem, an inheritance may make the addiction worse or even kill him or her. At the least, the inheritance is likely to be squandered. For anyone who has an addiction such as drugs or alcohol, it is best to pass the inheritance in trust, not outright. How Outright Inheritances Work Outright gifts pass into your beneficiary’s individual name. They are within your beneficiary’s full control, to be spent any way he deems appropriate. This … [Read more...] about The Addicted Beneficiary: A Problem and a Solution
Many people choose to use a living trust in addition to, or in lieu of, a Will to pass down estate assets. One reason people often choose to use a trust to distribute assets is the ability to direct when assets are distributed and even how assets are used by the beneficiaries. The benefit you gain by being able to dictate how trust assets are used, however, could be threatened if a beneficiary can sell or encumber her interest in the trust. Let's explore whether or not a beneficiary cannot … [Read more...] about Can Beneficiaries Sell Their Trust Benefits?
Historically, trusts were used almost exclusively by wealthy families to guard and pass down the family wealth from one generation to the next. Over time, however, trusts evolved to become much more useful to the average person. Consequently, trusts are now among the most common additions to the average estate plan. Let's look at five important steps to consider when creating a trust. Trust Creation Steps Define your trust purpose. This is the critical first step in creating a trust. … [Read more...] about 5 Steps in Creating a Trust
Trusts have become popular estate planning tools. Trusts come in many forms and can be constructed to accomplish specific goals in many cases. A basic trust consists of a trustor, a trustee, at least one beneficiary and assets that are used to fund the trust. Beyond the basics, trusts then fall into one of two broad categories — revocable and irrevocable. Although there are numerous other decisions that must be made when you create a trust, deciding whether your trust will be revocable or … [Read more...] about Do I Need a Revocable or Irrevocable Trust?
The health and safety of our clients, staff, and friends of the law firm are top of mind amid concerns about the spread of the Coronavirus (COVID-19). As estate planning and elder law attorneys, our practice is dedicated to serving our most vulnerable citizens, including seniors, those who are ill, disabled, experiencing mental health challenges and children with special needs. The uncertainty around the pandemic has many people with immune system challenges concerned about exposure to the … [Read more...] about Our Available Services During COVID-19/Coronavirus Pandemic
To create a successful estate plan that will truly accomplish everything you want it to, you will likely need to incorporate a wide range of interconnected estate planning tools and strategies into your plan. One of the most common additions to a comprehensive estate plan is a trust. There are several different categories of trusts and numerous specialized trusts within each category. Let's see how an incentive trust can be used to encourage a beneficiary to use an inheritance the right … [Read more...] about Can I Control How a Beneficiary Uses an Inheritance?
If your estate consists of significant assets, one of your primary considerations within your estate plan should be the impact federal gift and estate taxes will have on your estate after you are gone. One estate planning tool you may decide to use is an Intentionally Defective Grantor Trusts (“IDGT”). Let's explore why you might want to create an Intentionally Defective Grantor Trust. Intentionally Defective Grantor Trust Basics An IDGT is a specialized type of irrevocable trust. … [Read more...] about How Can an Intentionally Defective Grantor Trust Help Me?
One of the most common tools used when creating a comprehensive estate plan is a trust agreement. Most people are familiar with the concept of a trust; however, the details can be a bit murky. If you are considering the use of a trust in your estate plan, deciding on which type of trust is best for your needs and goals is the first step toward incorporating a trust into your plan. Let's take a look at ten types of trusts. Testamentary Trusts A testamentary trust is a trust that does not … [Read more...] about 10 Types of Trusts Explained
Although a Last Will and Testament is likely the cornerstone of your estate plan, you will also probably incorporate additional estate planning tools and strategies into that plan to ensure that all your goals are reached. Many people, for example, include a trust in their estate plan. The best way to ensure that you do not make any mistakes with a trust you create is to work closely with an experienced and qualified estate planning attorney. Let's look at five common mistakes people make when … [Read more...] about 5 Common Trust Mistakes