Hashing out an estate plan with your family’s interests in mind may include diversifying your options. Since your estate likely goes through probate, figuring out ways to lessen the court’s sway over your property may benefit your heirs.
Probate is not bad, but it may drag on, delaying any payout to those you love. Since your death will already take an emotional toll on loved ones, lessening the financial burden should remain the focus of your estate planning.
Can you pass cash outside of probate?
Your family may need access to cash to do things such as pay bills or funeral expenses. One way to ensure this happens is to open a joint account with someone you feel is responsible enough to handle these tasks. Checking and savings accounts with joint owners remain available and legally pass to the one left behind.
What does a trust accomplish?
A trust is a place to put property for others. You may place anything you own outright into a trust, including property deeds and cash. You do not technically own a trust account since you remove items from your inventory and place them inside it for the benefit of others. Therefore, the trust is not part of your estate when you die and becomes accessible to the trustees.
How does real estate pass?
If you want someone to inherit real estate, you should add him or her to the title. Like a bank account, property ownership passes to a surviving person listed in the title. This strategy also keeps the property out of probate.
A diverse estate provides your family immediate financial relief. It also helps to take some of the burden from their shoulders in the midst of turmoil.