Estate planning is a legal process which is targeted at assets preservation and succession. Through estate planning, you decide how your assets will be distributed at your death or during your life. When done properly, it can help save you and your estate thousands of dollars, and ensure your final wishes are carried out.
Proper estate planning will allow you to ensure you are able to control what happens to your assets now and after you’re gone. It is the best way to ensure your specific wishes are followed rather than relying on State Law of inheritance and intestate distribution. There are many benefits to estate planning including minimizing taxes, maintaining privacy, helping your loved ones avoid probate court, protecting your loved ones from creditors and much more.
A Will, or Last Will and Testament, is the most basic step in Estate planning. It will direct what you want to happen to of your assets upon your death. n addition, you may identify guardians for your minor children in your Will. For many younger people, a Will is the only Estate planning document that is needed. No matter how complex your Estate plan, however, you’ll almost certainly need to have a Will as part of it.
A Trust is an entity that exists through a private agreement between trustee – a person charged with responsibility to holding property for the benefit of another – and settlor – a person who parts with said property for the benefit of another (or sometimes, for the benefit of self) Different assets can be placed into a Trust. There are many different types of Trusts, each used to serve a different purpose. Choosing the right Trust, or Trusts, will help to ensure you reach your goals.
Probate is a legal proceeding in surrogate’s court whereby one’s Last Will and Testament is accepted as valid Will of the decedent and letters testamentary are issued to the executor. This is a public process and can take some time. With proper Estate planning, probate can often be avoided.
When starting a new business one of the most important things you can do is to pick the right business type. You can be a sole proprietor, a partnership, a LLC, a S-Corp, or a number of other things. Each has advantages and disadvantages, so make sure you choose wisely to avoid problems down the road.
Succession planning is an important process where a business owner identifies who they want to leave their company to when they either die or retire. You may leave control of the business to some people while leaving a financial interest to others. There is a lot of flexibility with respect to business succession planning. Succession plan will be part of an overall process where the successor is groomed to be able to take over the business with as little disruption as possible.
If you still have any questions about estate planning or business law, you will want to sit down with one of our attorneys. We can be reached by dialing 212-596-7039.