Protecting Your Legacy Starts With A Will
Why do you need a will as the foundation of your estate planning strategy? It’s a fair question. For simple estates, the courts may award everything to the surviving spouse. But after that, things can get tricky.
Why We Draft Wills, Trusts And Other Estate Planning Documents
If you don’t have a will or need to update your will due to a major life-event, discuss your estate planning and probate needs with an attorney at Barkan & Robon Ltd. - Attorneys At Law. Call us in Maumee, Ohio, at 419-897-6500 or Oregon, Ohio, at 567-302-0763 or contact us by email to arrange an initial consultation.
A legally drafted, signed, witnessed and updated last will and testament is the ONLY way to ensure the courts will award your assets and to the beneficiaries of your choosing. Without one in place, your surviving heirs may be put in a position of having to go to probate to determine how the estate is divided.
Having a valid will in place allows you to:
- Ensure your financial and property assets go to the beneficiary of your choosing
- Ensure that only certain persons are named as beneficiaries, precluding step-children who may claim themselves as heirs
- Ensure the family home (and other real estate) must remain with your spouse or surviving family member for residential and personal use
- Ensure your very specific wishes regarding the distribution of all or portions of your remaining assets to particular religious organizations and charities are carried out by the executor
What Can A Trust Do?
There are many different types of trusts, which can be established for the distribution of a specified amount of your assets according to the terms you decide. Living trusts can be set up to save you tax dollars now while allowing the distribution of the assets according to the terms you establish. An irrevocable living trust means you forfeit access to the funds for personal use. A revocable living trust means the money is set aside into a special trust account, but you may access the funds for personal reasons, with the tax consequences.
A testamentary trust simply means the money cannot be accessed until you have deceased. Living trusts and testamentary trusts can be established to meet the same purposes.
There are dozens of types of trusts. Talk to an attorney at Barkan & Robon Ltd. - Attorneys At Law to discuss your specific needs.
Some of the main reasons people set up trusts include:
- Special needs trusts provide for the continued health and welfare of a family member or loved one with special needs.
- Charitable remainder trusts, to distribute assets to a religious organization or favorite charities
- Spend-thrift trusts, to set limits on the amount a beneficiary may access, to prevent excessive spending
- Life estate trust, allowing your surviving spouse or loved one to remain in the primary residence until death, at which time the property is sold for assets or donated by heirs.
- Generation-skipping trusts, to ensure grandchildren receive assets that cannot be accessed by their parents.
- Education trusts, established for the express purpose of tuition and costs of higher education for children, grandchildren and other identified beneficiaries
Contact Us About The Best Way To Draft A Will Or Set Up A Trust
The attorneys of Barkan & Robon Ltd. are ready to help you meet your estate planning needs. Call us in Maumee, Ohio, at 419-897-6500 or in Oregon, Ohio, at 567-302-0763 or contact us by email to arrange an initial consultation.