Avoiding Probate - It is Possible!
Estate Planning Lawyer in Thousand Oaks, CA
Some people may believe that it is impossible to avoid probate. However, if you create or give certain types of trusts, accounts, gifts, and/or ownerships, you may minimize the probate court's involvement, or avoid the probate process entirely. If your estate qualifies as a small estate, you may be given shortcuts through probate, or evade probate of your estate entirely.
In order to learn more about how to avoid probate, talk to an experienced estate planning attorney with Pederson Law Offices today. Our attorneys can construct an estate plan that will ensure certain properties and assets do not go through probate.
Contact a Thousand Oaks estate planning attorney from our firm today at (805) 495-3444 to learn more!
How can it be done?
Revocable living trusts are just one type of trust that can help you avoid probate. You hold certain assets in a revocable living trust while you are alive, and after you pass away, the property is not considered part of your probate estate. The person or entity that you named as trustee owns the trust property, and they can transfer your assets to the predetermined beneficiaries.
Payable-on-death registrations and accounts may also avoid probate. You can convert your bank and retirement accounts to payable-on-death accounts by filling out simple paperwork and naming a beneficiary. When you die, your beneficiary will receive the money without going through probate.
If you have joint ownership of a property, said property will not have to go through probate upon your death. Your surviving co-owner will automatically receive the property without the hassle of having to complete the probate process. Types of joint ownership include joint tenancy with the right of survivorship and community property with right of survivorship.
Giving away assets and property while you are still alive may also help your family avoid the probate process, but extreme care should be taken, as this could result in adverse tax consequences to the maker or recipients of said gifts. It is similar to a trust. Once you give an item away, you no longer can claim ownership of that asset.
Gifts that are given away cannot be listed in your probate estate. It may be beneficial for you to gift your estate's most expensive items prior to your death, in order to lower possible probate costs. However, be advised that lifetime gifts of assets should never be made without proper guidance from an experienced estate planning attorney.
Contact Pederson Law Offices to Avoid Probate
If you create a proper estate plan, your family may be able to avoid the probate process. A lawyer from our firm is able to advise clients on how to best avoid areas of probate law, while still protecting their assets and providing for their families.
A valid will cannot by itself help you to avoid probate, although it may make the probate process easier. You must have certain types of trusts, accounts, ownerships, or gift assets in order to avoid probate.
To prepare an estate plan so that your loved ones can avoid probate, contact our attorneys at (805) 495-3444 and schedule a free 30-minute consultation.