Our New York office is in Albany, so if you live in New Scotland, we are just a short drive away. This charming small town was originally founded in 1832, so there are many historic sites that dot the landscape. There are three buildings that have made the National Register of Historic Places which are the Bennett Hill Farm, the New Scotland Presbyterian Church and the New Scotland Cemetery, and the Onesquethaw Valley Historic District, also there is additional older architecture that is quite impressive. In 2010, the population was about 8,648 and has grown considerably since. The town of New Scotland includes Clarksville, New Salem, Voorheesville and New Scotland (the hamlet). The town of New Scotland is in Albany County and would use any of the resources listed under Albany, New York.
We have developed relationships with many local families over the years, and we look forward to making new friends as time goes on.
The Importance of Estate Planning
Most people take financial planning very seriously, but many of the same individuals are remiss when it comes to planning for a major financial event that every family will face. It is very important to put an estate plan in place to provide for all of the people that you love in the optimal manner.
There are different ways to facilitate postmortem asset transfers, and the best choice will depend upon the circumstances. A lot of people think that a last will is the only logical choice, because they are under the impression that trusts are only for very wealthy people. In fact, this is a misconception.
A revocable living trust is an effective alternative to a last will on a number of different levels. First, there is the matter of probate avoidance. When a will is used as a primary vehicle of asset transfer, it must be admitted to probate. The executor would handle the estate administration tasks, and the Surrogate’s Court would provide supervision during the process.
The heirs to the estate cannot receive their inheritances while the estate is being probated by the court, and the wait can be considerable. Even if there are no particular complications, it will typically take eight or nine months to a year. More complex cases can take considerably longer.
One of these complications is a potential estate challenge. Probate opens up a window of opportunity for anyone that may want to contest the validity of a will. In fairness, sometimes challenges are appropriate, but in other cases, disgruntled parties that are in the wrong slow things down unnecessarily.
If you use a revocable living trust instead of a last will as the centerpiece of your estate plan, the trustee that you name in the trust declaration would be able to distribute assets outside of the probate process.
Another disadvantage is a reduction in the amount of the inheritances that will eventually be received by the heirs. Many expenses accumulate during probate, and all this money that goes out is essentially removed from the pockets of the rightful inheritors.
In addition to the hassles that go along with probate in New Scotland, if you use a last will, you would be providing lump sum inheritances. This can be a source of concern if you have family members that are inexperienced at handling large sums, and some people are simply poor money managers.
Things are entirely different if you utilize a living trust. In the trust declaration, you can instruct the trustee to distribute assets in any manner that you choose. For example, let’s say that you have conveyed an apartment building into the revocable living trust. After expenses are paid, there is $4000 in monthly income. You could instruct the trustee to distribute this $4000 to a beneficiary each month and leave the building in the trust to keep generating income.
This is just one example, but the point is that you can stipulate exactly how you want the assets to be distributed to the beneficiary or beneficiaries.
Another benefit that is gained through the creation of a revocable living trust is the ability to account for incapacity. Unfortunately, many elders become unable to make sound decisions on their own at some point in time, with Alzheimer’s disease being the leading the culprit. When you draw up the trust agreement, you can empower a disability trustee to manage the trust if you ever become unable to do so yourself.
Schedule an Estate Planning Consultation Today!
A living trust is the right choice for many people in New Scotland, but there are other possibilities. If you are ready to explore them, schedule a consultation appointment. Our phone number in New York is 518-389-6020, and you can use our contact page to reach out electronically.