How and when to transfer assets to beneficiaries can be a difficult decision for many Michigan residents. Some prefer the traditional process of wills and probate. Others, however, look for ways to save and make the process easier. A careful analysis of how the trust and probate administration process affects the individual's estate can help one decide the best way to transfer assets.
Trusts are often created as a means of transferring assets in a manner that minimizes cost and confusion for loved ones. Assets are placed into the trust during one's lifetime and allow the individual to control who receives assets and when they are disbursed. Additionally, depending upon the type of trust, changes can be made as the individual sees fit.
Trusts are often created as a means of avoiding estate taxes. In some cases, these taxes can be avoided through the trust. However, another primary benefit of trusts is that assets can be transferred privately. What this means is that assets can easily be transferred to the intended beneficiary without the matter going before the probate court. This can save loved ones from the unwanted attention and delay that can be a part of the probate process.
An experienced attorney can assist the Michigan resident in determining how the trust and probate administration process will affect his or her estate. Then, appropriate decisions regarding how assets should be transferred can be made. Through careful estate planning now, loved ones can focus on moving forward rather than estate matters when the time comes.
Source: bankrate.com, "What Is A Trust?", Jan. 9, 2018