5 Mistakes to Avoid When Drafting Wills

On January 31, 2016

Devising a will can be an important first step to take in the estate planning process. When formalizing your wishes in a will, however, avoiding certain mistakes can be integral to ensuring your will is valid and that your wishes are properly documented – so they can be carried out later. To help you avoid any missteps, below we have highlighted some of the most common and damaging mistakes to avoid when developing wills. When Devising Wills, Do NOT… Include…
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How to Choose an Executor or Personal Representative for an Estate

On January 24, 2016

A central part of estate planning can be selecting the right executor and/or personal representative to carry out your wishes in the future. While you may have some ideas of who to appoint to these positions, below are some specific tips to keep in mind when making these selections to ensure you choose the best person (or people) to fulfill these roles. Selecting Executors & Personal Representatives When it comes to choosing the best person to serve as your executor…
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Are My Trust Distributions Taxable?

On January 18, 2016

It depends on the nature of the distribution, as well as when the distribution is made. More specifically, the income earned and distributed by trusts is subject to taxes. Whether you or the trust is responsible for paying these taxes, however, will depend on when the funds are distributed: The trust will be responsible for paying taxes on this income when it retains the income through the end of a calendar year. The recipient (i.e., the beneficiary) will be responsible…
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Agents under Powers of Attorney: 4 Important Facts to Know

On January 12, 2016

Agents, also referred to as attorneys-in-fact, have some important responsibilities and powers. Although the specifics of these duties and the extent of their power will vary from situation to situation, in general, the following are among the most important facts to understand about this role. The Facts about Holding Powers of Attorney The power of attorney document will dictate the specifics – Namely, the power of attorney document will detail when the agent is to assume his or her powers…
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What Is the Difference between a Will versus a Trust?

On January 6, 2016

Wills and trusts are two fundamental tools in estate planning. While both wills and trusts can help you pass on certain assets of your estate to loved ones, they do so in different ways – and they can have different, unique benefits in certain situations. Main Distinctions between Wills versus Trusts Wills only take effect after a death – While a will is devised (and revised) during someone’s lifetime, the instructions in the will are only carried out after the…
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