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Use the right tools to increase trust in estate administration

There is no reason to be intimidated by the idea of planning for your financial future. The peace of mind you achieve by doing so is worth the time invested in estate planning, and using the right tools can increase the positive benefits of estate administration. In particular, asset protection through trusts can be invaluable to future security for Nevada families.

Consider a son who is the sole support for his dad. A first thought might be to name him as beneficiary in the son's will. But what happens to dad if his son dies first? This is where a testamentary trust can play a helpful role. This type of trust goes into effect after death. With a bank and another family member as co-trustees, both financial expertise and familial care are covered according to experts.

Another illustration is the case of parents who are not convinced a child or children will handle a substantial inheritance wisely if the need arises while the family is young. A trust can be set up to generate an annual income rather than a beneficiary receiving a lump sum. Ages can be specified for partial payments of trust capital, with the remaining balance at a later date.

Revocable trusts can be changed as circumstances do; an irrevocable trust can't be materially altered. Revocable trusts allow the transfer of legal ownership of property without actually giving up control. The safeguards of assets moving in and out and ownership reverting back are appealing when tax situations are relevant.

Trustees and successor trustees will have responsibilities under the law. It can be important to your goals to carefully consider who is the best person or entity for the job. Trusts that are well-written by experienced and knowledgeable authors are designed to save time, money and the bother of probate and related estate administration processes.

Whatever your personal circumstances are, the protections afforded by the wide variety of estate planning options, including trusts, can be very helpful. Clear explanations of what is available will allow for good choices to meet your specific needs.

Source: Kiplinger.com, "Putting Your Trust in Trusts" No author given, Jan. 31, 2014

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