One of most important goals of any estate plan is preserving a person’s wealth. To properly pass on your assets to your loved ones, you must make sure that your assets are adequately safeguarded. Fortunately, a well-crafted estate plan can offer substantial protection for your assets even if legal challenges arise. While it is no substitution for obtaining the assistance of a seasoned estate planning attorney, this article will outline some of the best estate planning methods you can utilize to preserve your family’s wealth.
Creating a Will
There are a large number of individuals who simply do not have a will at all. Without this estate planning document, it will be left to Georgia probate court to divide your assets, which could result in numerous tax complications as well as your assets being passed to the wrong people. The best way to make certain that your estate is properly administered is to create a will.
Make Certain to Select the Proper Beneficiaries
There are some assets that pass to loved ones through estate planning documents other than wills. When designating beneficiaries in life insurance policies and other types of accounts, it is critical to make sure that the proper beneficiaries are listed. You should also make sure to revise your list of beneficiaries in case any changes occur, like divorce or death. If you do not list a beneficiary or the designated beneficiary has since died, the proceeds from the retirement account or insurance policy will likely go back to your estate and pass through probate to whomever the state decides.
Establishing a Trust
If you have concerns that a beneficiary might spend money unwisely, you can establish a trust to distribute your assets over time. You could choose an irrevocable trust, in which the assets are harder for you to access while still alive, or a revocable trust, in which you maintain some control over your assets while living. Trusts, however, are particularly complicated and involve many complex decisions, which is why people who are interested in creating a trust should contact an experienced estate planning lawyer for assistance.
Convert Accounts to Roth IRAs
Many people are not aware that they will be required to pay income tax on traditional IRAs if they pass the account to someone who is not their spouse. One of the best ways to avoid this tax is to convert traditional IRAs into Roth IRAs. To make this type of conversion, however, you will be required to pay taxes on the amount converted. An experienced estate planning attorney can help you make these conversions.
Speak with a Seasoned Estate Planning Lawyer Today
If you have questions about estate planning or are not certain what method would work best to preserve and pass on your estate, you should not hesitate to speak with an experienced estate planning lawyer. Over the years, attorney Jim A Lyon has helped many people create and execute estate plans to achieve a variety of goals. Contact attorney Jim A Lyon today to schedule an initial free case evaluation.