Legal matters pertinent to trusts and estates are extremely complex due to the numerous variables that are involved, supplemented by the level of intricacy and technicality involved in it, especially when it comes to estate planning. For instance, an individual may want to leave their property for their children from their prior marriage, but they might want to let their current spouse live in that property for the remainder of his/her life. Such kind of provisions can be made primarily by taking one of these two routes: a Will and a living trust.
Using a Will, an individual can make an arrangement where their current partner will be able to remain in the house for a specific period that will start either after your death or until their demise, whichever happens first. Afterwards, their children will inherit the property in proportions as described in the Will. However, a Will must also specify who will be responsible for the maintenance and payment of insurance and taxes pertinent to that property. The spouse may assume this responsibility until the property is eventually passed onto the children, but it is equally possible to pass these responsibilities to the children as well.
It is critical that a Will clearly describes each term and condition to prevent disputes. Therefore, a person may hire an experienced real estate lawyer to ensure that their Will is free from any ambiguities or uncertainties. The only downside of using a Will is that the heirs may want to go through the probate process, which may take some months and even years in case of debt claims or challenges.
Using a living trust option, an individual can put their house in a Trust and assign themselves as a Trustee. This will enable them to assign successor Trustees to take over after their death. In substance, the property will be owned by the Trust and managed by the named trustees. Similar to a Will, you will be able to specify the terms as you wish.
Moreover, using this approach will prevent the requirement of going through a probate process. The arrangement will be privately handled by the trustees without the requirement of going to the court, thus there will be no delay of transfer. Again, it can be beneficial to procure the services of a competent real estate lawyer to make such an arrangement. Using their knowledge and understanding of law and taxation, your real estate lawyer will help you to choose the best legal route enabling you to plan your estate in the most effective way.
For further information on Trusts and Estates or to schedule a free consultation, contact Casement Law Group, P.C. today at (847) 888-9300 to speak with an experienced real estate lawyer.