The majority of New Jersey residents are aware that a will establishes how and to whom a person's estate will be distributed after death. A will guides estate administration. Not having a will complicates matters and puts the distribution of assets squarely in the hands of the Surrogate's Court, which is guided by state law instead of the wishes of the decedent.
Many people are interested in making sure that they develop a plan for what happens to their assets after they die. However, estate planning in New Jersey and elsewhere also needs to take retirement funds into consideration.
Those who are acting as executors of an estate will likely benefit from understanding what to do as part of their responsibilities. Estate administration in New Jersey and elsewhere entails a multitude of duties and responsibilities, which when accomplished correctly, may help maximize assets and limit liabilities.
A recent study found that about 19 percent of baby boomers feel that they owe their children an inheritance. Of individuals age 72 and older 14 percent feel they must leave an inheritance to their children. While it may be that baby boomers are more interested in imparting family legacy and values, the simple fact is that many still have substantial assets to distribute as well.
When someone passes away in New Jersey or elsewhere, surviving family members are often left with collections of stamps, furniture and stacks of old magazines that have accumulated over many years. Collectibles can be difficult to sort through for heirs in terms of monetary and sentimental value. However, modern technology can help with inventorying and determining the value of one's inheritance. Nevertheless, deciding which family members receive what is an ongoing problem.