Probate is the process is the process of proving the validity of a will or seeking approval to administer an estate. The time and expense associated with probate may be avoided through careful and comprehensive estate planning. Brea California estate plan lawyers from the Fridley Law Firm can explain to you the ways probate may be avoided and what is recommended for your situation.
How can probate be avoided?
Probate may be avoided in a variety of ways. This includes:
- Gifts: Property devised during your lifetime is not subject to probate. You may want to consider gifting certain property or transferring title while you are living. There are important tax considerations involved with this, so you should consult with an attorney before pursuing this action for any significant assets.
- Trusts: A trust may be created to avoid probate. Through a trust, property is held by a trustee for the benefit of certain beneficiaries. The trust documents set forth how the trust is to be managed. A trust may be created while you are living or may become effective at the time you pass away. Trusts may have certain tax benefits.
- Non-probate assets: Some assets may be transferable automatically at the time of your death. This may include retirement accounts, life insurance, bank accounts, etc. To ensure that these assets are transferred without the need of probate, you will need to take certain steps to identify the beneficiaries and set forth clear instructions.
How can an attorney help you avoid probate?
An attorney can help you develop an estate plan that maximizes the potential benefits and achieves your desired outcome. By working with an attorney, you will understand the risks and benefits with each option. An attorney can help you avoid probate and will help ensure that your estate plan is valid and efficient.