Article 105-Estate Planning Series: Why You Need A Trust

Written by Wright Law on . Posted in Estate Planning, Trusts, Will

There are many situations in which a trust is very effective.   For example, property in a trust need not go through the cost and process of probate when you pass.

Probate is the process which permits property (such as land) owned by a deceased person to be passed on to a beneficiary.  But probate in Idaho can’t address a condo or cabin located in another state.  Those who own a home here, and a second home in Arizona, may want to put both properties into a trust and avoid paying two attorneys in two different states for probate.

Article 103-Estate Planning Series: What is Wrong with Using a Form for my Will or Trust?

Written by Wright Law on . Posted in Estate Planning, Trusts, Will

An effective estate plan should be as simple as possible, so long as it carries out your wishes.  However, some want you to believe that you need only purchase their “form” to have an effective estate plan.  Using this form, you are told, can save money and -- best of all -- the form is valid in all 50 states. 

If the cost of an estate plan is measured only by the cost of the document, that form will likely be cheaper.  After all, it does not attempt to account for your individual circumstances.  However, if cost includes the confidence that your estate will be carried out the way you intend, using a form may be the most expensive method of all.

Article 100-Estate Planning Series: What is the Best Way to Help Your Aging Parent?

Written by Wright Law on . Posted in Estate Planning, Will

Last column I discussed the challenge for both parent and child as an aging parent loses the ability to care for him or herself. In some cases, the parent may have only nominal limitations.  In others, a parent may be fully incapacitated.      

A parent may be mentally capable of handling any situation; and physically capable of handling most.  However, due to limited mobility -- for example – assistance is still necessary.  A trip to the bank now requires coordination of the parents and child’s schedule.  Even when a child is willing to transport an otherwise immobile parent, it is not always convenient . . . for either party. 

Article 99-Estate Planning Series: How Should You Help Your Aging Parent?

Written by Wright Law on . Posted in Estate Planning, Long Term Care, Will

It is not uncommon for me to receive a call from an adult child concerned about a parent’s decreasing ability to care for him or herself.  Circumstances often require assistance the child does not have the ability to provide.

Without sufficient assistance, bad things can happen.   It only takes an instant for an aging parent to fall.  One third of seniors will fall each year (longtermcare.gov).  Falls are the leading cause of both fatal and nonfatal injuries for seniors, and often lead to a new series of health issues.  By age 75, a fall is four times more likely to result in admittance to a skilled nursing facility.

Article 94-Estate Planning Series: Why We Do What We Do

Written by Wright Law on . Posted in Estate Planning, Trusts, Will

For my columns and presentations, I have two purposes.  First, I try to educate.  Estate planning and elder law have complex strategies and concepts.  But we can cut through much of the mystery if I can help people understand some basic concepts.  That is why, in each presentation, we talk about questions such as:  Do I really need a will?  What is the difference between a will and a trust?  Why would I need a trust?

Article 87-Estate Planning Series: This Is What a Trust Can Do For You

Written by Wright Law on . Posted in Estate Planning, Trusts, Will

Last column I explained the basic difference between a Will and a trust.  In essence, a Will simply identifies who you want to receive your  assets at your passing.  However, a trust allows much more control over how your assets will be used to address circumstances specific to your family.   More on this to come.

There are many other situations in which a trust is very effective.   For example, those who wish to avoid “probate” can use a trust to hold their assets.  This is especially effective if you own land in more than one state.  A trust can help you avoid paying for probate in two different states.

Article 86-Estate Planning Series: Do I Need a Will or a Trust?

Written by Wright Law on . Posted in Estate Planning, Trusts, Will

Most people understand the basic purpose of a Will.  It is the document most people use to instruct who will receive their assets when they die.  A Will may be sufficient to address the assets that make up the estate of many people.  (However, as I have discussed previously, a Will alone is not sufficient to address all the issues that should be considered as part of an estate plan). 

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