ESTATE PLANNING IS NOT ALL ABOUT THE DOCUMENTS
Estate planning allows you to state your wishes regarding your assets, your personal items, and your burial/cremation service. For example, you may prefer a mausoleum, a ground burial or a cremation. I went to a memorial service this past weekend and it was a happy, celebration of life lost to cancer way too soon. The burial in the mausoleum was family only and took place a few days before the funeral service. At the service, his favorite songs were played on a guitar and a video played happy times and memories of him living life to its fullest. At the family home after the service, his favorite music, drinks, and food were shared by all who loved him. What a nice way to celebrate a great life!
WHAT IS THE DIFFERENCE BETWEEN A WILL AND A TRUST?
A will states burial/cremation information, mentions a list of personal items, and states who gets what in the case of death. For example, MJ wishes to leave all of her assets equally to her three grown and responsible adult children. She can do this in a will and probate court will probably be required. Probate must be properly handled by a Miami probate attorney, takes usually a minimum of six months, and is a court process where a Judge is appointed and then decides how the assets are sold and handled.
A trust is a private document that allows the family to hold, rent, or sell the real estate assets and hold or liquidate accounts based on the grantor’s wishes. Business ownership may also be placed in the trust. These assets may be left to minor children with instructions for a trustee to maintain the trust until those children are old enough to manage or may be given outright if loved ones are over 18 and responsible. For example, MJ wishes to leave her assets to her three minor children for health, maintenance, and welfare while they are young. The trust can also state that the children receive the money and assets half at the age of twenty-five and half at the age of thirty-five, for example; allowing them two opportunities to inherit. The business and real estate rentals can all be managed and kept within the trust entity for safekeeping until the children reach these chosen ages.
A trust is also protective in the case of incapacity, where the assets can be held and managed by the successor trustee and the need for a guardianship is avoided.
A trust is different than a will because ownership can be held by a trust. For example, one trust can own many real estate properties even if they are in different states, a business, bank accounts, and investment accounts. A will cannot own property and if MJ, for example, dies with real estate, bank accounts, or businesses in her name alone, then probate court will definitely be required to pass on or transfer these items to her loved ones. Thus, a trust is usually recommended for people with assets and loved ones.
WHY SHOULD YOU USE ALLY GLASER, PA TO HANDLE YOUR WILLS, TRUST, ESTATE PLANNING AND MIAMI PROBATE MATTERS?
As a Miami Beach, Florida, Estate Planning, Wills and Trusts, and Probate Attorney, I have over twenty years of experience and handle these matters with care. I am familiar and comfortable with the Miami-Dade County probate court system and know how to get things done. Call or email me today to discuss your Estate Planning, Wills, Trust, or Miami-Dade County probate matter.