Estate Planning in Ogden, Utah, to Protect Your Assets
Real estate is often the most expensive investment that people have. While purchasing a home, vacation property or even commercial land is a great addition to your financial portfolio it is essential that you plan for what happens once you are no longer able to manage it. Though most people don’t want to think about dying or being medically incapacitated, avoiding the discussion can make things even harder for the survivors.
Several factors can influence your estate planning needs. At the very least, you need to have a will that lays out your wishes. However, there are instances where it can benefit you to transfer some of your assets into a trust. Finding a trustworthy estate planning attorney in Ogden will ensure that you understand the various options and how they will impact your estate.
A will gives you the opportunity to state exactly who should inherit your properties of value as well as family heirlooms. Without one in place, your family could end up fighting over the properties, or someone that you don’t want to gain ownership wins it in court. The legal process of probate is time-consuming, final and expensive.
The current ownership status of your property can also impact how your assets will be distributed upon your death. If you have a joint tenancy with equal ownership, the other party will inherit your half, even without a will. On the other hand, shared tenancy usually involves more than one owner and varying percentages of ownership. In these instances, the portion belongs to the estate and does not undergo transfer with proof of death.
It is also important that you add secondary beneficiaries if your heir passes away before taking ownership of the property. For instance, if you are both involved in a fatal accident your will and/or trust should have provisions to account for this possibility. For those with few or no family members, charitable organizations can be a good place to give back.
There are many different ways that you can establish a trust, which is where hiring an estate planning lawyer is worth the cost. A testamentary trust includes your will while a living trust can be accessed while you are still alive.
The assets in a living trust are not subject to probate and are available immediately. An irrevocable trust cannot be closed though it is possible to sell and buy properties through it. However, you cannot remove the assets.
This is why some folks decide to create a revocable trust. By doing so, you have access to the funds and properties and the ability to close it should you choose to. However, these assets might be sought by creditors.
To understand how these factors impact your estate planning needs, you need to hire an estate planning lawyer in Ogden who is familiar with a will and estate planning. This is the best way to ensure that your financial affairs and everything according to your will shall work out as planned.
Thanks to our friend and estate planning attorney in Ogden, Michael Haslam, for his insight on estate planning in Ogden, Utah to protect your assets. Michael is the founding attorney at Voyant Legal. He helps families in Farmington, Ogden, Layton, Bountiful and surrounding Utah areas create estate plans and elder law plans to protect their families and assets.