What do you need to know about estate planning?
Depending on your age, the size of your estate, your family structure, your health and that of your beneficiaries, these documents will play a major role in achieving your Estate Planning goals. The Law Office of Andrew M. Lamkin, P.C. will work with you to determine which documents are best suited to achieve your goals.
Last Will and Testament
Your Will has two primary purposes. First, parents of minor children can name a guardian to care for those children in the future. Second, a Will lets you determine how your assets will be distributed.
Without a will, New York State will make these decisions for you. The only way to have peace of mind about your children and your assets is to create a Will.
Upon your passing, your Last Will & Testament will be admitted to Probate whereupon the Court will appoint an Executor of your Estate. The Executor is then responsible for administering your estate according to your Will.
A Trust is a legal entity that an individual creates during their life or upon their death. The trust can own assets such as a home, bank or brokerage account, CD or life insurance policy. There are several kinds of trusts and each serves a slightly different purpose:
Kind of Trusts
Revocable or Living Trusts
Revocable Trusts can be used to avoid probate. They are especially helpful for clients who own property in multiple states and who wish to create a complex plan of distribution. They can also be used for those with an estate in excess of one million dollars to limit an estate tax liability or those in second marriages who wish to make necessary provisions to protect their families.
Used to protect assets against the cost of long term care, including the cost of a home health aide or nursing home. By implementing an Irrevocable Trust you may be eligible for Medicaid benefits.
Supplemental Needs Trusts
Used to provide for the needs of another individual who is disabled and receives or may receive SSI or Medicaid. Assets in the Supplemental Needs Trust can be used for the benefit of the individual but it does not affect that persons eligibility for SSI and Medicaid.
Insurance Trusts, Credit Shelter Trusts and Qualified Personal Residence Trust (QPRT) – Estate Planning strategies used to limit an estate tax liability.
Minor trusts are often used to set aside money for your children to use when they are old enough to handle it responsibly.
If you have an adult child with financial issues or simply want to provide them with an income stream for a period of time, a spendthrift trust will allow you to protect any possible inheritance from their creditors and provide them with a structured plan of distribution.
Contact a Long Island Wills and Trusts Attorney
Call 516-605-0625 or contact me online to schedule an appointment. I am available to meet with you at your home or my office.