Being a successor trustee is a huge responsibility, and depending on the amount of funds left to you to help you carry out the assignment, there may not be a very big payoff. How can you be loyal to the trustor and carry out your duty in a fine manner? Here are a few tips:
- Get help with bookkeeping – You may have been selected because you are trustworthy, not for your math skills. In that case, it may especially be important to hire an accountant to help out. If it is a sizable trust, the beneficiary should be happy you have the extra help rather than being concerned that the accountant’s fee will mean there is slightly less in the trust for him or her.
- Avoid envy – This may not be as difficult if the trustor also left you a nice sum, but if you are doing all the work and the beneficiary is wasteful with money, it can be easy to give in to envy and think you deserve the money rather than him or her.
- Don’t go beyond your role – Your job is to carry out the wishes of the trustor. He or she believed you would put those wishes ahead of your own personal gain. That’s how you became the trustee in the first place. Stick to the instructions you’ve been provided.
California Estate Plan Assistance
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It is possible to make your retirement funds work hand in hand with your trusts and other estate planning. Making your trust the beneficiary of your retirement plan is one of the main ways to do this.
At first, the reason may seem obvious. You want to put everything you can into your trust so it doesn’t go through probate. But this is not the reason for making your trust the beneficiary of your retirement account. After all, your retirement account passes directly to the named beneficiary, so it will never go through probate. So what is the reason for making your trust the beneficiary? Here are two good reasons:
- Keeps your beneficiaries from removing the funds prematurely – If you pass away while your spouse is still under the retirement age, you don’t want them making a mistake that could cost a lot of money by removing the funds from the account too early and receiving a penalty.
- Keeps your beneficiaries from removing too much from the fund at once – Taking retirement funds in a lump sum can result in huge amounts of taxation. Your successor trustee can help your beneficiary to understand the consequences and to make better decisions.
Planning Ahead for Your Family’s Needs
The estate planning attorneys at Petrov Law Firm can help you to make things easier for your family. Call us today at 619-344-0360 to set up an estate plan that really works for your needs.Read More
An irrevocable living trust is just one of the many ways that you can choose to leave assets to your heirs. This is a popular option for a number of reasons. Here are three things you should know about irrevocable living trusts.
- They can help you avoid probate – Trusts are cared for by a successor trustee who is designated to take care of the trust and make sure your beneficiaries get the money faster and without court fees.
- You can be the trustee while alive – This means that you can make changes to the trust on an ongoing basis (unless you choose to declare it irrevocable while still alive). This makes a living trust a popular option for people who want to be able to control what goes into the trust and who the beneficiaries are.
- The trust becomes irrevocable at death – While a trustee has a little more leeway with a regular trust, an irrevocable trust is set once you die. The successor trustee will carry out your instructions for distributing the trust in the amounts and to the individuals set forth by you.
Planning Your Estate in Chula Vista and North County
Petrov Law Firm has the experienced estate planning attorneys that Chula Vista and North County residents can trust. Start planning for the future of your family now, or have our attorneys look over your existing trust to see if it can be structured in a better manner. Call 619-344-0360 to get started and see the benefits that come from having seasoned estate planning lawyers in your corner.Read More
If you give a gift to a family member or friend that exceeds a specific value, it can be taxed. Because of this, some people decide to leave gifts in the form of a trust. It allows you to leave much more money to a person without a portion of it going to the government. Here are some of the best ways to leave a gift via trust to your loved ones.
- IDGT – The intentionally defective grantor trust is used to leave the family business to another household member, and it protects the beneficiary from the company’s creditors.
- QPRT – A qualified personal residence trust is a great way to transfer a house to your family when you don’t want them to pay the full market value. Your family will receive asset protection as well as tax benefits.
- CRT – A charitable remainder trust is for when you want to leave the gift to a charity rather than an individual. It also provides tax benefits to your estate.
- Gift trust – A gift trust with annual exclusions allows you to give family members the maximum exempt amount per year with the rest going into a trust that will be dispensed later. While the family doesn’t get access to all the funds immediately, they also don’t have to pay half of it in taxes.
Generous Estate Planning Options in Southern California
For more generous estate planning options in southern California, contact the estate planning experts at Petrov Law Firm by calling 619-344-0360. Our experienced attorneys can help you leave assets to your heirs with the minimal tax burden, so your family enjoys your assets rather than the government.Read More
Being a successor trustee is a weighty responsibility. You want to be sure that person you select will do what is best for the trust and ensure a good financial future for your beneficiaries. However, there are some common pitfalls that a successor trustee could fall into. Here are a few ways to provide help that may prevent the most common pitfalls.
- Bookkeeping errors – Is your trustee level-headed but not the best with numbers? An accountant can help ensure that no mistakes are made. Plus, a second set of eyes keeps everyone on the straight and narrow.
- Crossing the line – A successor trustee can fall into think that he or she plays a larger role in how the assets are preserved than you intended. Leaving precise instructions will help your trustee to remember what his or her proper function is.
- Envy – Your trustee sees what you are leaving to your beneficiaries and is the one doing all the work. In order to avoid feelings of envy or jealousy from clouding the trustee’s judgment, it is a good idea to provide adequate compensation.
It is also important to be objective when selecting your successor trustee. The best way to avoid problems is to select the best person for the job rather than allowing sentiment to get in the way.
California Estate Planning Experts
For more assistance with trusts, contact the estate planning attorneys at Petrov Law Firm by calling 619-344-0360. We are happy to help California residents plan for the future with confidence.Read More
You may recognize some of the benefits of leaving your estate to heirs by means of a trust rather than simply executing a will. It is a great way to avoid having your funds tied up in probate battles. However, you need to understand the different types of trust.
An Irrevocable Life Insurance Trust
When you are leaving a life insurance policy to a beneficiary, you want to protect the funds from creditors. You can also add other funds to the trust besides the life insurance money. You can even designate funds in the trust to be used for paying the policy premiums while you are alive, ensuring that there is never a delayed or missed payment that could result in the policy being withheld from your family. The trust is considered irrevocable because only you can modify the trust while you are alive or your beneficiary after you pass on.
A Revocable Living Trust
This is a great way to set aside funds for loved ones while still being able to adjust the trust at any time while you are alive. You can establish a successor trustee to ensure that your beneficiaries receive the funds as directed by the trust. You can even make the trust your life insurance beneficiary. Since the trust is revocable, you can take trust distributions while you are still alive. When you die, it automatically transfers to your beneficiaries and becomes irrevocable.
Help Establishing Trust Funds in California
The estate planning attorneys at Petrov Law Firm will be happy to help you determine what sort of trust is best for you and your heirs. To learn more, you can call our San Diego office at 619-344-0360.Read More
Mental illness is increasingly common in the world today. If a relative has an illness, it doesn’t make you love them any less or want to take care of them any less. Therefore, your estate plan needs to be able to help you provide the support you want your loved one to have while compensating for the fact that he or she may not be able to manage the money alone. Here are a few tips to help guide you.
- A loyal and compassionate trustee. By appointing the right trustee over any trust that you leave to your loved one, you can ensure that the funds will be used for your loved one at the right times and in the proper amount.
- Controlling what funds can be dispensed for. Perhaps your loved one doesn’t need someone to care for him or her, but is still concerned about things like impulse spending or squandering the inheritance in other ways? Structuring the inheritance so that funds are only released for certain types of expenses is a good way to protect your loved one.
- Covering voluntary treatment costs. You can structure the trust so that your loved one receives a dispensation when he or she seeks medical care relating to the condition. This may move your loved one to see the high value of proper treatment and may provide the funds necessary to get the right care without the guilt of how expensive medical treatment can be in the US.
Discretionary Trusts and Other Estate Planning Methods in California
At Petrov Law Firm in San Diego, our estate planning attorneys will be happy to help you plan for the future needs of your loved ones. To see what types of estate planning are best for your family, contact us today at 619-344-0360.Read More
You cannot just assume that the right people will benefit from your assets when you pass on. Estate planning is required in order to ensure that your wishes are carried out. Unfortunately, many people make the mistake of thinking they can do nothing and that their mate and children will automatically get everything. Here’s the issue with that mentality:
The traditional family structure is becoming less common in the US.
If you and your mate have only ever been married to each other and all of your kids are naturally born to the two of you, you may actually be correct in thinking that your loved ones will inherit everything. But how many families are like that?
If you are raising grandkids, have children from multiple spouses, have adopted children, or have been married more than once, you may have no idea what the line of succession will be for your family. On top of that, family members may have different ideas as to how to care for you medically if you become incapacitated later in life. There can also be fights over funeral arrangements.
Lovingly Caring for the Future of Your Family
The loving way to care for the future of your family is to have an estate plan in place. Petrov Law Firm is your source for estate planning attorneys in southern California. Get in touch with our San Diego and Chula Vista lawyers today by calling 619-344-0360. We can help you plan for your future.Read More
The Internet is filled with generic wills that you can download and just add your information to. However, if you want your estate plan to be personalized, you may require the assistance of an estate planning attorney. Here are a few tips for customizing your estate plan, so that your heirs gain the most benefit.
- Leave something to charity – What is really important to you? By leaving some of your estate to charity, you can show future generations the causes that meant the most to you. Plus, you have the peace of mind of knowing that some of your estate is going to a good cause that can really create a legacy for your family.
- Pass on heirlooms – Rather than just combining all of your physical possessions to leave to a relative in one lump sum, determine some of the things that have the most sentimental value to you and turn them into family heirlooms.
- Create a narrative – By using everything from letters to video recordings, you can tell your story to the next generation. Passing on money is one thing but passing on your knowledge and experience can help the next generation to use the things that you have amassed in a wise manner.
Estate Planning Attorneys in San Diego
To help you customize an estate plan that will meet your needs and benefit future generations, contact Petrov Law Firm today. Our estate planning lawyers can help you to understand how federal and California laws affect your planning efforts. Get started today by calling 619-344-0360.Read More
Estate planning is about more than leaving money to your heirs. This is an opportunity to create or pass on a real family legacy. Here are a few ways to ensure that your name will live on long after you are gone.
- Trusts – You can create trusts that are dispensed when certain conditions are met. For example, you can create an education trust so that your grand kids can attend the university of their choice. You can even create trusts that provide incentives to reach goals, such as a trust that becomes available to your niece when she opens the new business she has been talking about venturing into. Knowing that the capital is there to get the business off the ground may be just what she needs to decide to give it a try.
- Letters and Old Photographs – While many modern personal documents and photos all exist in the cloud and are easy to pass on, your family may still have a treasure trove of old letters and printed photos. From pictures of your parents and grandparents to love letters that passed between relatives back in the 19th century, you can leave a wealth of family history to the next generation.
- Video and Audio Files – Your knowledge and experience can prove beneficial to future generations. But what if you are worried that the modern generation won’t care about your handwritten or typed letters? Why not try creating digital recordings of your advice or, better yet, video recordings. These can be preserved for years to come, allowing generations of the family to benefit and to see your face and hear your voice even if they never got to meet you in person.
Let Us Help You Establish Your Family Legacy
At Petrov Law Firm, we specialize in estate planning and can help you to leave behind a legacy for future generations. To learn more, contact us today at 619-344-0360. We look forward to helping you ensure that your future is well taken care of.Read More