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Wills and Revocable or Irrevocable Trusts

A Will is a useful tool in planning for your future. Your Will can dictate who you leave your personal property and real property to, who the executor of your estate will be, how your funeral arrangements will be carried out, and many other important decisions. It is very important for every individual to create a Will to designate the disposition of their assets in the event of one’s death.

If a Will is not executed at the time of your death, your assets will pass through intestacy laws, which vary from state to state. At Halperin Lyman we work with you to draft your Will so that all of your assets will be correctly distributed per your instructions after your death. In addition, we can advise and help you update your non-probate assets such as life insurance policies and retirement plans. We will then properly execute your Will so that it cannot later be contested in probate court.

Most individuals will only need a simple Will, as opposed to more extensive estate planning, which can require the creation of revocable or irrevocable trusts.  However, individuals with more complicated financial needs may benefit from the creation of a revocable or irrevocable trust. Trusts involve three parties: a donor, a trustee, and a beneficiary. One individual can fill multiple roles in the trust. The trustee has a fiduciary obligation to manage the trust to the benefit of the beneficiary. A revocable trust allows the donor to revoke or change the terms of the trust at anytime during his or her lifetime. However, at the donor’s time of death, the revocable trust becomes irrevocable.

An irrevocable trust establishes similar rights and obligations as a revocable trust; however, the donor has no authority to revoke or change the trust during his or her lifetime. The most significant difference between revocable and irrevocable trusts involves estate tax consequences. An irrevocable trust cannot be revoked or modified after its creation; therefore, it is no longer considered part of one’s estate and will not be factored into the value of one’s estate for death tax purposes. A revocable trust can be revoked or modified during the lifetime of the donor; therefore, it is considered part of one’s estate and will be factored into the value of one’s estate for death tax purposes.

At Halperin Lyman we have extensive knowledge in creating both Revocable and Irrevocable Trusts. We can craft the provisions of your Trust so that they are tailored to your specific needs. Additionally, we will help you understand the process of creating a Trust and the duties and obligations of each member in the Trust. This will help you make informed decisions when deciding vital aspects of your Trust.

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