Getting started on an estate plan is often something that New York residents think about but do not necessarily act on. Individuals tend to have many reasons for not yet planning, but in reality, it can prove immensely detrimental to delay estate planning for too long. Some people may simply believe that they do not need the plans, but that is a common misconception.
There are many legal aspects associated with closing an estate. Many New York residents likely know that probate is the process that finalizes a deceased person's affairs, but a number of individuals also think the process is one that should be avoided at all costs. However, probate does not have to be viewed in that light, and estate planning can help individuals determine whether using the process could suit their desires.
When getting final affairs in order, New York residents will need to appoint various people to different roles. Whether these individuals will carry out duties before a person's death or after, it is important that parties considering their appointments understand the different positions they may come across while estate planning. No one wants to give just anyone a great deal of responsibility, so knowing what certain roles entail may help with decision making.
After a loved one's death, it is common for surviving family to have concerns over what will happen to the decedent's assets. Hopefully, the person will have created an estate plan that gives at least some guidance on property distribution and other important information. It may also help surviving loved ones to understand probate and how assets are distributed.
When undertaking any type of endeavor, it is important to have the right information. This factor is especially important for New York residents looking to get their end-of-life affairs in order. A lack of proper knowledge when it comes to estate planning could leave room for individuals to have planning mistakes or no plan at all.
Most people who create their estate plans do so with the thought that siblings or other loved ones will come together and share in the gifts and assets that were left behind. Such optimism is noble, but it does not always work out this way. While siblings and competing loved ones may appear to have love and compassion for one another, things may change quickly after a matriarch or patriarch passes away.
Estate planning is an exercise to ensure that our personal property is distributed to our heirs and beneficiaries in the way we see fit. For a myriad of reasons, this may be difficult for those choosing to leave property and assets to loved ones. At the same time, beneficiaries may have vastly different ideas about what they should be entitled to even though a will may have been drafted.
As estate administration attorneys, it is very interesting to see what family members learn about someone after they pass away. Perhaps there are long-standing, clandestine relationships or personal achievements the deceased was too humble to share. Regardless of the family secrets that come out when a loved one passes away, insurance information should not be one of them.
Estate planning in 2016 is not like how other generations planned how their assets would be distributed when they passed away. Indeed, people still establish wills and different forms of trusts, but with so many people having digital assets (i.e. email accounts, social media data and electronically stored information) it is important to know what to do with these assets when a person passes away.
With tax season in full swing, it is not just tax payers who are concerned about filing taxes. The confusion over how to complete tax forms may not go away for executors tasked with administering an estate. Obscure and dense tax forms can be vexing; especially for those who do not regularly deal with them.