When a family member or close loved one passes away, family members typically start thinking about what they might inherit from the decedent’s estate. Likewise, when there is controversy or conflict over an estate, it is most often the result of two or more heirs disagreeing over the inheritance to which they feel they are entitled. What happens, however, if you do not want the inheritance left to you? Are you required to accept it? An Essex Junction estate planning attorney at Unsworth … [Read more...] about Am I Required to Accept an Inheritance?
Your estate plan can do much more for you than simply ensure your estate assets are distributed according to your wishes after you are gone. In fact, a well thought out and properly drafted estate plan can also go a long way toward protecting you and your assets while you are alive. Furthermore, it can provide you with the peace of mind that comes with knowing your wishes regarding end-of-life medical treatment will also be honored using advance directives. The Essex Junction estate planning … [Read more...] about Why Do I Need an Advance Directive?
When you think about estate planning, you likely focus on creating a plan that distributes your estate assets when you are gone. Although that may remain your primary estate planning goal, you will probably also include additional, related goals as your estate plan grows. One of those goals may be probate avoidance. Avoiding probate entirely may be impossible; however, with some careful planning you dramatically reduce the amount of time and money spent on the probate of your estate. Toward that … [Read more...] about What Assets Avoid Probate?
When you think of an “estate plan” you likely think first of executing a Last Will and Testament. For many, a Will is the foundation of their estate plan. For some, a Will may be their entire estate plan. A comprehensive estate plan, however, may include other components in addition to, or even in lieu of, a Last Will and Testament. The Essex Junction estate planning attorneys at Unsworth LaPlante, PLLC explain some of the more common estate planning components. Estate Planning Goals and … [Read more...] about What Should Be Included in My Estate Plan?
If you have included a trust in your estate plan, one of the decisions you made when creating that trust is who to appoint as the Trustee of the trust. A Trustee is responsible for managing and investing trust assets and administering the trust according to the terms created by the Settlor. The success, or failure, of a trust is often determined by how well the Trustee performs his/her duties and responsibilities. If problems arise though, can a Trustee be fired? The Essex Junction trust … [Read more...] about Can a Trustee Be Fired?
As a veteran, or the surviving spouse of a veteran, you likely know about some of the more common benefits available to you through the Veterans Administration (VA). You are probably also aware of the complex maize that must often be navigated to get approved for the benefits to which you are entitled. What you may not know is that you could be entitled to benefits from the “Veterans Aid and Attendance (VA&A)” program. For veterans and/or survivors living on a fixed income, the additional … [Read more...] about Veterans Aid and Attendance Benefits – What You Should Know
A Last Will and Testament is typically the first estate planning document created and often continues to serve as the cornerstone of a comprehensive estate plan. A variety of estate planning tools and strategies, however, may eventually be added to the original plan. One of the most popular additions is a trust agreement. Knowing which type of trust can help you accomplish your estate planning goals is imperative to creating a successful plan. To help you better understand trusts, an Essex … [Read more...] about Common Trusts Explained
If you have already created an estate plan, you are ahead of most Americans; however, you are not done yet. Reviewing and revising your existing estate plan is just as important as creating the initial plan because having an outdated estate plan in place can be worse than not having a plan at all. The Essex Junction estate planning attorneys at Unsworth LaPlante, PLLC help you decide it if is time to review your existing estate plan. The Importance of Reviewing Your Estate Plan All too … [Read more...] about Is It Time to Review Your Estate Plan?
You have probably spent a lifetime building up your assets and a considerable amount of time deciding which of those assets to gift to which beneficiaries. To ensure that loved ones are financially secure in your absence, you also created a comprehensive estate plan. All this planning is undoubtedly essential; however, your entire plan could be derailed if you have not considered how long your beneficiaries will have to wait for their inheritance. The Essex Junction estate planning … [Read more...] about How Long Will a Beneficiary Have to Wait for Their Inheritance?
When you think about the method used to distribute your estate assets you likely think of a Last Will and Testament. Many people do use a Will as the foundation of their estate plan and as their primary distribution document; however, there is another common option – a trust agreement. If you create a trust and a Pour Over Will, all your estate assets should ultimately be distributed using the trust agreement. The Essex Junction estate planning attorneys at Unsworth LaPlante, PLLC explain why … [Read more...] about Should I Use a Living Trust to Distribute My Estate?