Protecting Your Loved Ones, Lifestyle and Legacy
Most people understand that having some sort of an estate plan is, as Martha Stewart would say, a “good thing.” However, many of us don’t take the steps to get that estate plan in place because we don’t understand the nuances between wills and trusts – and dying without either.
Here’s what will generally happen if you die, intestate (without a will or trust), with a will, and with a trust. For this example, we’re assuming you have children, but no spouse:
After that, state law will decide who gets what and when.
-For example, if your only heirs are your children and you have not provided any instructions, state law will mandate divvying up proceeds equally.
-Your older children will get their shares immediately if they’ve attained adulthood.
-But, the court will appoint a guardian to manage the money for your minor children until they become adults.
-Shockingly, that guardian can charge a lot of money and be a total stranger – as can the guardian who raises your child.
-Yes, if you die without a valid …