Leaving a Legacy
Do I need a Will or a Trust?
- In general, many assets can be transferred to your heirs by title or beneficiary designation without a Will or Trust. However, though efficient, it leaves exposure to the loss of the asset by bankruptcy, law suits, divorce, poor management, unnecessary taxes, or influence by the predators and creditors surrounding the inheritor.
- A Will must go through probate and will, therefore, be public, time consuming, payment of court costs and does little to dilute the threats of estate loss as mentioned above.
- A Trust is private and can easily transfer assets to the intended heirs. If carefully designed by a skillful attorney, a Trust can protect the assets from most risk exposure and additionally have the advantage of the Grantor’s wisdom and values during the transfer of the assets in the estate.
- In addition, a Trust most often has additional benefits to the Grantor(s).
What kind of legacy do I want to leave?
- It has been said that you will always be remembered, either for what you did do or what you didn’t do. A strategic Estate plan can pass on more than tangible assets, it can also be a resource of wisdom and values that will impact generations towards a better life. Most of our client’s primary objectives is to protect their assets, to be as tax efficient as possible, to enhance the inheritor’s lives, and to maintain harmony among the beneficiaries.
- An Estate should be designed for the individual or couple’s specific objectives and not a general or boiler-plate product. The legacy desires or needs can be varied, such as: supporting your favorite charity(s) or creating your own charitable foundation, or a carefully designed inheritance to a special needs child can protect their income needs and provide the best possible care.
- A legacy is the extension of your aspirations, hopes and dreams for what you care about the most.
NOTE: Investors should consider consulting with their tax professionals prior to making decisions due to their unique circumstances.