Everyone who is formulating their estate plan is concerned with the probate process following their death. Protecting assets is important for everyone with significant wealth, and going through the probate process where creditors or other claimants could file against the estate is something all want to avoid. While it is difficult to bypass the probate process altogether, a significant portion can be protected when your assets are set aside in specific financial instruments. A probate advisor can help significantly in this regard in many situations.
1. Asset Exposure
The structure of an estate is important, and especially in the event of an untimely death. Assets that are not protected as part of a trust or a will can be left vulnerable to attachment from creditors and other claimants that may have documented evidence of their claim. Probate attourney San Diego can help in this regard, and advise on any asset exposure that is essential.
2. Wills Can Be Contested
Everyone needs a will of some sort. However, the date of will completion and who may have influenced the establishment can always be questioned in court by another individual who may be in line for a potential inheritance. The purpose of a will is sound protection of assets and definitive transfer of assets after death. A probate advisor can ensure this happens and that the will is legally valid.
3. Tax Avoidance
One of the primary claimants in any probate process will be the government requesting as much taxes as they can justify. And they are the priority as far as the court is concerned. While tax evasion is illegal, tax avoidance is not. Your probate advisor can help protect against tax obligations by providing prior information regarding what can happen in probate. Always remember that the same government that is collecting taxes is running the court as well.
4. Establishing Trusts
One of the best legal methods of protecting assets and making sure your wealth is distributed according to your wishes is evaluating how a trust can help in that ownership assignment. Some trusts are revocable, and others are irrevocable. A probate advisor can help you understand which is most effective while still allowing for access to your assets to some degree while still alive. Trust establishment can be technical, and legal assistance is always advisable when crafting the trust.
5. Keeping Your Estate Plan Current
Another issue with estate planning is regular updating, especially when personal assets are invested and growing on a continual basis. Having a designated probate lawyer means you have professional counsel addressing the protection of your assets in the event of an untimely death or incapacitation of any type. Being prepared for every possible situation is vital when you have assets to protect, and reputable legal counsel is an excellent professional reference when assets are exposed to any type of claim.
Never assume a mere will is sufficient for ensuring your personal property disposition. There are many surprises that can occur in estate probate when the state steps in. Residents should always call Kam Law Firm probate attorney in San Diego for comprehensive legal representation.