Manage Problems With Wills, Estates And Probate Management
The thought of preparing for the end of your life sounds dark. However, estate plans and wills might be two of the most important things you ever do for your family. They can keep your assets from falling into Minnesota’s intestate succession and ensure your valuables go to the people you want to have them. At Caldecott & Forro, P.L.C., our wills, estates and probate attorneys can work one-on-one with you to preserve your legacy and protect your most valuable assets.
Appointing An Executor Or Administrator Of Your Will
The executor manages your debts and follows your asset distribution instruction. The probate court will likely appoint them. Their responsibilities include:
- Filing documents with the court
- Paying debts/taxes
- Notifying companies/government agencies of your death
- Canceling credit cards
- Distributing your assets
Effective Estate Plans Protect Your Interests
If you do not properly prepare your estate plan, there could be problems. These documents can prevent family arguments, keep your heirs from overpaying taxes, allow someone to make health care decisions for you and keep valuable assets in the family.
Estate planning documents include:
- Designating beneficiaries
- Durable powers of attorney
- Guardianship designations
- Health care powers of attorney
- Letters of intent
Probate Is Unavoidable In Some Cases
If you have a will, it must go through court-supervised authentication. Some types of trusts can help you avoid probate. Assets that do not have to go through probate include life insurance and retirement plan proceeds. Probate also is not required for jointly held bank and brokerage accounts and real estate. Minnesota does allow agencies to claim Medical Assistance on an estate.
Assets that require probate include:
- Bank accounts
- Brokerage/investment accounts
- Business interests
- Contract for deeds
- Medical Assistance claims
- Real estate
Wills Can Help You Avoid Intestate
When someone dies without a will or estate plan, they die in intestacy. If that happens, the court will determine asset distribution. A person’s estate can also go into intestate if the court rules a will is invalid.