Trust Lawyer North Kingstown, RI
A trust lawyer in North Kingstown, RI understands that trying to find the best way to ensure your family is taken care of when you are gone can be confusing. One of the best estate planning options in Rhode Island that individuals may utilize is trusts. We can explain the different types of trust options there are and how each one may or may not benefit your particular situation. The following is an overview of how trusts work.
You may have at one point or another heard that you need to write an estate plan, but what does this mean exactly? How does someone begin writing one, and what kinds of things are included in it? And is an estate plan only for the wealthy? Estate planning is a useful tool for any adult person who has a legacy they want to leave behind with those they cherish the most, and you don’t have to be rich and famous to benefit from one either.
Inventory Your Property
Many people assume that they don’t have enough property or belongings to justify writing an estate plan. But after getting a good look around your home, the outside of it, and intangible assets, you’ll quickly realize that you have more than you thought. You may be surprised at how much you have, and how important it is to pass it along to those you love the most in the future. As your trust lawyer North Kingstown, RI families depend on can review with you, examples of tangible assets can be items like:
- Real estate or land
- Vehicles, motorcycles, boats, etc.
- Collectibles such as art, jewelry, antiques, etc.
- Other personal possessions
Review Your Beneficiaries
Beneficiaries are people or charity organizations that you want to have a part of your estate after you pass away. Many people choose their closest relatives and partner as their beneficiaries, but you can include friends and even charity organizations too. After you have written a list of your assets, then you can write a list of those closest to you or philanthropy efforts that are dear to your heart. In this way, you can compare the lists and decide which beneficiaries are to receive what items from your estate.
Consider Legal Help
There are online programs you can use to generate a basic estate plan, however, they are not going to account for family nuances and other individual circumstances that you may have. A North Kingstown trust lawyer advises against these programs usually because if the documents have errors or are not complete, it can put your estate plan at risk for being viewed as invalid in the future. A legal team is your best resource for writing and reviewing an estate plan before finalization.
Make Plans To Reassess
Life changes all the time, and your estate plan should always reflect your current circumstances. If you have a life event that happens that conflicts with something in your estate plan, then you have to make updates as soon as possible. It may be disappointing to learn that once you establish an estate plan, the work is not over. But think of it this way, you want to make sure that your last wishes reflect life now, and if it doesn’t, then you risk your legacy being given away to or handled in a manner you don’t want. So don’t hesitate to contact our North Kingstown lawyer trust team for help.
Parties In A Trust
When you form a trust, there are three parties who are involved. They are:
- The grantor: This is the party who is giving the property.
- The trustee: This is the party who oversees the property that is in the trust.
- The beneficiary: This is the party for whom the trust is created.
A living trust is similar to a will, however, unlike a will, a living trust is not required to go through the probate process. When the person who set up the trust dies, then the property of the trust immediately goes to the beneficiary. There is no waiting period like there is in the probate process.
The grantor has different options in setting up the trust, as well. The beneficiary may receive control of the trust property right away or the grantor may set stipulations when property can be accessed from the trust and who has oversight or control over the trust.
The grantor also has the option of setting up the trust as revocable or irrevocable. A revocable trust can be changed or canceled at any time by the grantor. An irrevocable trust cannot be touched at all once it has been established. Your North Kingstown, RI trust lawyer can explain which of these two options will work best in your situation.
If the grantor decides that there should be a trustee overseeing the trust for the beneficiary, then there are certain powers the trustee has under the law. These may include:
- Sell or negotiate property held in the trust
- Enter leasing agreements (such as in rental properties)
- Mortgage any property held in the trust
- Sell or purchase stocks, bonds, or other security transactions of the trust
- Execute contracts or other binding instruments
- Make improvements to trust real estate
- Grant easements on trust property
- Pay taxes and other financial obligations on trust property
- Retain the services of attorneys, accountants, or other advisors for the benefit of the trust
Contact Our Office for Assistance
Trusts are just one part of estate planning. Other tools you may consider include wills, power of attorneys, living wills, and advance directives. Call McCarthy Law, LLC to meet with a North Kingstown, RI trust lawyer and let us help you ensure your family’s future.