Strategies to Avoid Probate in Granite Bay, California
STRATEGIES TO AVOID PROBATE
To avoid the probate process, our trust and estate attorneys will help you implement strategies to do so. We will carefully review your personal circumstances and determine appropriate ways to avoid the probate process.
For example, we might advise you to establish a trust. By establishing a trust, your funds and assets are not subject to probate. When a property is in a trust, it is no longer part of your estate because the trust — not you — legally owns the property. Therefore, the property is no longer subject to hefty estate tax. A trust also allows you to provide clear guidelines to your designated trustee about how you want your property managed.
Avoid Probate by Designating Death Beneficiaries
There are options for transferring your assets upon death without subjecting them to probate, including designating death beneficiaries for some of your financial accounts. Through this method, you name a person who will receive the remaining funds in your account immediately upon your death. This designation transfers ownership of the fund when you pass which means the asset is no longer part of your estate and is thus ineligible for probate. Through retirement accounts, you are also free to name whomever you want to inherit your account. However, if you are married, your spouse may have the inherent right to some or all of the funds in the account.
Avoid Probate Through Joint Ownership
When you share ownership of your property, the right of survivorship outweighs probate law. When a joint owner of an asset passes away, the remaining owners automatically inherit his or her share. It is not possible for the joint owner to designate in a will that someone else receives his or her share of the property. This typically requires a written document that establishes the joint ownership and the right to survivorship, which our probate lawyers can help you complete.
Joint ownership can be established through the following methods:
Joint Tenancy with the Right of Survivorship – Upon the joint owner’s death, his or her portion is divided among the surviving owners.
Joint Tenancy in Entirety – This form of ownership is only available to spouses. When a joint owner passes away, his or her interest is transferred to the survivor.
Community Property – Under California law, the property and income that a couple earns during a marriage are considered community property. The surviving spouse inherits these assets.
Seek Expert and Empathetic Legal Representation
At Herrig, Vogt & Hensley, LLP, our accomplished trust and estate lawyers are here to guide you through the complexities of probate avoidance. We recognize the significance of safeguarding your loved ones and assets, and we are fully equipped to offer top-tier legal advice to assist you in achieving that goal.
Schedule your free consultation today to discuss strategies to avoid probate!