Why Make Avoiding Probate A Priority?
Estate planning is a valuable tool for not only establishing your legacy and wishes, but also for sparing your loved ones the ordeal of probate. There are many advantages to keeping your estate out of the probate process. With the right strategies in place, you can:
- Avoid the expense, stress and delays involved in the probate process
- Minimize the risk of estate disputes
- Keep your estate administration out of public courts
- Simplify the process for your loved ones
Our Goal Is Probate Litigation Risk Management
“Taking everything into consideration now often results in avoiding probate and contested will disputes later. When we draft your will or set up a trust for our clients, we use our extensive experience in probate litigation to see through possible disputes that may arise later.” Attorney Jeffrey Voelkl
How To Accomplish These Goals
There is no one-size-fits-all approach to avoiding probate. Much depends on your financial situation and priorities. At Voelkl Law PC, our attorneys can help you develop a plan that fits your needs. Effective strategies may include:
- Establishing a trust: Trusts can take many forms. Some can accomplish multiple goals, such as avoiding probate and minimizing estate taxes. Revocable living trusts and testamentary trusts, for example, are common vehicles for avoiding probate while still enjoying the use of your wealth and assets during your lifetime.
- Retitling assets: Many types of property — such as real estate, life insurance proceeds, retirement assets and bank accounts — can be transferred outside of probate if properly set up. For real property, there are multiple forms of ownership that are effective for avoiding probate. For other types of assets, you can use beneficiary designations to keep the assets out of probate. Our lawyers can examine your ownership arrangements and help you explore effective options.
- Transferring assets during your lifetime: Your legacy doesn’t have to go into effect after your death. Instead, you can start making it effective now, during your lifetime, by establishing a gifting plan. This approach has the double benefit of avoiding probate and, often, reducing taxes.