A quick guide to many of the common questions to ask your estate planner on everything from wills to trust so that you can best protect your family.
If you’re getting ready to start planning ahead for the future, congratulations. This is one of the best steps you can take to ease your mind and protect your family’s financial future. Today, Franklin-based estate planning attorney Trent Linville covers a few of the most common questions to ask your estate planner.
What Assets Make Up My Estate?
Your estate is built of more than money. You may have many other important assets, including real estate, business interests, cash, retirement plans, life insurance, and valuable personal property, such as jewelry or antiques.
Is Estate Planning Right For Everyone?
The short answer: yes. Estate planning is not reserved for the ultra-wealthy. It’s an important service that can help protect assets in all value ranges. If your name is attached to any type of property, you want to make sure that your children, grandchildren, or other beneficiaries receive them. Estate planning is how you do just that.
I’ve Already Established A Living Trust. Should I Have A Will, Too?
Maybe. If you have assets that are already part of the trust, having a will might be a smart idea. If you’re in the Franklin, TN, area, you can always schedule a visit with Trent Linville to determine which assets are unaccounted for in your trust.
Should I Be Worried About Probate?
The probate process is an important step that the local government takes on your behalf if you die intestate, meaning without a will or an heir succession line. It works to validate estate planning documents, pay off your debt, and distribute your assets. Probate may apply even to small estates, so it’s always best to have your proverbial ducks in a row as soon as possible.
What, Exactly, Is A Trust, And How Is It Different From A Will?
A will is a legal document that you use to leave property or assets to people or organizations upon your death. A trust is similar. However, this estate planning tool specifies how these assets might be managed and distributed, even before you pass away. A trust will kick in if you become physically or mentally incapacitated, avoiding any lengthy delay in asset distribution.
What Are The Different Types Of Trust?
The three main types of trust are revocable living, testamentary, and charitable remainder. A revocable living trust is one that you establish and pour assets into during your lifetime. You no longer maintain ownership of these assets but retain total control. When you die, your heirs won’t have to worry about probate. The term “revocable” implies that the trust may be changed or withdrawn by you at any time. A testamentary trust is part of a will and only goes into effect at your death, not incapacitation. A charitable remainder trust is a non-revocable, tax-exempt vehicle that conveys gifts of cash or assets to a named charitable organization.
Do I Really Need An Estate Planning Attorney To Establish A Will Or Trust?
Technically, you can easily download these types of documents and DIY your life estate. However, unless you fully understand the ins and outs of estate planning law, it’s exponentially easy to make a mistake that may cost you and your family time, money, and heartache.
Estate planning consists of many different moving parts. And no two attorneys have the same experiences or expertise. Before you choose an estate planner, make sure to ask them plenty of questions so that you feel comfortable that your assets and your family’s future won’t be left to chance.
The Law Office of Trent Linville, PLLC offers estate planning, probate and trust administration, and other services throughout the Franklin, TN, area. Linville holds a law degree from Belmont University College of Law and is a proud member of the Tennessee Bar Association, the Williamson County Bar Association, and the Maury County Bar Association. Linville also serves on the Springhill Board of Mayor and Aldermen. He chose estate planning as a way to help the members of his community best protect their loved ones. For custom estate planning solutions, contact the Law Office of Trent Linville, PLLC today.