Most people, if asked, would likely claim to recognize the importance of certain estate planning documents such as a will or trust. However, some couples, for example, who have many assets and accounts in joint accounts may not recognize the need. By taking certain steps in the present, people in Georgia can ease the estate administration and probate process for their beneficiaries in the future.

Even for couples or other family members who hold their assets jointly, a will is necessary to explain how the assets will be divided if one person survives the other. Additionally, wills are used to name guardians of minor children. Also, this document will explain what happens to any remaining assets if there is a trust that does not include all assets.

For many, the creation of a trust is beneficial as well. Trusts are not subject to the probate process, sometimes giving beneficiaries access to assets during the public probate process. People can choose someone — either a family member or a professional — to help manage the estate and administer it when appropriate.

Regardless of the complexity of an estate, careful planning can help families who are grieving get through the estate administration and probate process quickly and, sometimes, at a lower cost. While some people choose to create these documents on their own with only the help of the internet, doing so can cause additional obstacles. By utilizing the services of an attorney experienced with the process, those creating such a plan in Georgia can help reduce the chances of ambiguity or a successful challenge.

Source: newarkadvocate.com, “Four things to consider when estate planning“, Abigail Rehbeck, Aug. 19, 2017