Many in New Jersey tend to be overwhelmed before they even begin the estate planning process. For this reason, the idea of sitting down to create an estate plan may seem slightly less terrifying than going to the dentist. In reality, the process can be broken down into simple steps that can make it more manageable and less of a mystery.
The majority of New Jersey families may not think they could benefit from having a trust. However, a trust can be an invaluable estate planning tool for any family. Trusts come in all shapes and sizes depending on the needs of the party executing the trust.
For many people in New Jersey, choosing the executor of their estate is as easy as turning to their spouses. Since most surviving spouses are significantly affected by the outcome of the probate process, and are often the person trusted the most by their spouses, it may be helpful for that person to be the executor/executrix of the estate. However, some spouses may not want to serve as executor or executrix, or perhaps they passed away first. In this case, the estate planning process can become a bit more challenging.
There are ways to transfer property other than through a last will and testament. Many people strive to avoid having their assets go through probate through the use of estate planning. A will is only the beginning of estate planning. So much more can be done to safeguard and transfer a New Jersey resident's assets.
Most anyone in New Jersey that has drafted and executed an estate plan has done so with the hopes of making things easier on their loved ones after they pass away. However, depending on how long ago the estate planning was done, it may end up making things for difficult. For this reason, it's may be a good idea to review an estate plan periodically.
Most people in New Jersey are aware that they should have an estate plan. What many people aren't sure of is what they want that estate plan to accomplish. It's not just about how much or what assets a person wants to leave to each family member, it's how that amount or those assets will be left.
The new estate tax laws have had many in New Jersey and across the country taking a closer look at their estate plans. Anyone who included a trust as part of their estate planning documents may want to review it now, particularly if it is designed to minimize or avoid estate taxes. In some cases, the new laws render some trusts unnecessary. However, it is still helpful in certain circumstances to keep a trust.
When it comes to taking the time to sort through one's financial circumstances and plan for the future, it always seems like the ideal time to sit down and begin is just on the horizon. However, notwithstanding the fact that sooner is always better than later in such matters, there are certain times that buckling down and addressing one's estate planning can really pay off. Now is one of those times for New Jersey residents, as the end of the year approaches and substantial tax benefits stand to expire.