We are located in Mt. Clemens, so people that live in Fraser, Michigan have easy access to our office. Fraser is a very special place, with a tightly knit, small-town feel. At the same time, everything that a large metropolitan area has to offer is within easy reach, so residents enjoy the perfect balance.
If you reside in this fine town, and you do not have an estate plan in place, action is definitely required. Many individuals feel as though they can quickly draw up a last will when they are old and gray, but in reality, you never know what the future holds. Plus, for most people with a reasonable store of resources, a last will is not the right choice, and there are other considerations outside of asset transfers.
Fraser, Michigan Estate Plan Components
One major reason why a last will is not always preferable is because of the fact that a will must be admitted to probate. If you live in Fraser, the Macomb County Probate Court would provide supervision.
This legal process would take approximately eight months to a year to run its course if there are no complications. Cases that are complex can take considerably longer, and the heirs cannot receive their inheritances while the estate is being probated by the court.
This time lag is one of the negatives, but there are a number of others. There are expenses that accumulate during probate, and they can be considerable.
The executor, who is the estate administrator, is entitled to payment for his or her time and effort. A probate lawyer will often be engaged by the executor, and an accountant can be called in as well. Clearly, these professionals charge for their services.
Plus, there can be liquidation and appraisal charges and other incidental expenses. All of this red ink can add up to consume a significant portion of the estate before it is distributed to the inheritors.
Another probate drawback is the loss of privacy. Anyone that is interested can access probate records to find out how the resources were distributed. Lastly, probate opens up a window of opportunity for disgruntled parties that may want to challenge the validity of a last will.
A revocable living trust is an alternative that can be used to avoid all of these drawbacks. If you establish a revocable living trust, you would name a trustee to administer the trust after your passing. You would leave behind instructions with regard to the way you want the resources distributed, and after you are gone, the distributions would take place outside of probate.
This is one alternative to a last will, but there are a number of others. The ideal choice will depend upon the circumstances, and this is why personalized attention is key. That is exactly what you will get when you engage our firm to help you put your Fraser, Michigan estate plan in place.
In addition to the matter of asset transfers, you should consider latter life eventualities when you are devising your estate plan. Unfortunately, many people become unable to communicate sound decisions at some point in time. Alzheimer’s disease strikes about 40% of people that are 85 years of age and older, and of course, this is not the only underlying cause of incapacity.
To account for this possibility, you can include an incapacity planning component in your broader estate plan. One piece of the puzzle is a living will. With this document, you state your preferences with regard to the utilization of life-sustaining measures like feeding tubes, artificial hydration, artificial respiration, etc.
Your incapacity plan should also include durable powers of attorney, which are legal devices that allow you to name others to act on your behalf in the event of your incapacitation. You can name a medical decision-maker in a durable power of attorney for health care, along with a monetary representative in a durable financial power of attorney.
Schedule a Consultation Today!
We are here to help if you are a Fraser, Michigan resident that would like to discuss your legacy goals with a knowledgeable estate planning attorney. You can send us a message to request a free consultation, and we can be reached by phone at 586-493-7661.