Ogden, Utah Estate Planning
Estate planning is an essential part of life to ensure that your loved ones and assets are appropriately taken care of after your death. Many details go into putting together an estate plan and working with an experienced estate planning attorney at Red Law can help you make the best decisions for your future.
We recommend starting the estate planning process as early as possible, but many individuals choose to put an estate plan in place once they have children to protect their future. However, an estate plan can be valuable to protect your current assets and any future children that haven’t been born yet. It is always better to have one in place before you need it.
Estate planning allows individuals to put a plan in place for what happens to their “estate” after they die. An individual’s estate is made up of all their assets, and the plan very specifically outlines what should happen to these assets upon the individual’s death. This could include transferring assets to family members or donating them to charity. An estate plan can also include documents that outline end-of-life care plans or healthcare directives.
Basic Estate Plan
Each person’s estate plan will vary based on their personal assets and goals, but the following documents are generally included in a basic estate plan if your assets are valued at over $100,000:
- Revocable living trust
- Pour-over will
- A durable power of attorney
- Health care directives
- Assignment of assets (to place assets into the trust)
If you have less than $100,000 in assets, a traditional will may be a simpler and cheaper option as some of the steps above are unnecessary. Working with an experienced estate planning attorney can help you determine the best combination of plans for you.
Wills vs. Trusts
Wills and trusts are both very common estate planning tools with their own benefits. Depending on your circumstances, one or both might make sense as a part of your estate plan.
A will outlines what happens to an individual’s assets upon their death. If a will is in place, it must be filed with the probate court upon death to determine eligibility. Generally, a will involves a simple transfer of assets to a beneficiary or beneficiaries without too many restrictions on how the assets can be used.
A trust provides individuals with more control over what happens to their assets after their death. They can appoint a trustee to help manage the assets and place restrictions on how they can be used. This is most often used when the individual leaves behind young children or teens who may not be responsible enough to manage the assets. A trust may outline at what age a beneficiary should receive their funds and what they can be used for (i.e., only used to pay for school, healthcare, etc.).
Advanced Estate Planning
In addition to wills and trusts, many advanced estate planning techniques can be utilized for unique situations. If you own a business, have a partnership with family members, own LLCs with family assets, buy-sell agreements, or other scenarios, various tools can ensure long-term positive outcomes for your loved ones.
A healthcare directive is a document that provides instructions to family and medical care providers on how you would like difficult healthcare decisions to be made if you are unable to do so for yourself. While people rarely anticipate having an accident or becoming otherwise impaired, having this type of plan in place can reduce stress and financial burden on your loved ones if you do.
Start Your Estate Plan with Red Law
Regardless of your age or financial situation, it’s never too early to get started on an estate plan for your future. Give us a call to schedule your initial consultation with Red Law.