The Importance of Consulting with a Trust Attorney
If you would like to speak with a trust attorney Sacramento, CA offers, contact us at the Yee Law Group. When it comes to estate planning, you have several options, including various types of trusts. It can be confusing for people who are unfamiliar with the many options. Our experienced trust attorneys may provide you with the knowledge you need in order to make an informed decision.
A respected Sacramento trust attorney from Yee Law Group may review your case at no charge. With a recommendation on how to proceed, you can be confident about whether or not establishing a trust is right for you.
The Value of Establishing a Trust
Without a trust, your wishes for the distribution of your estate might not be followed. A trust attorney in Sacramento, CA from Yee Law Group may work with you to protect your legacy. With a trust, you may reap the benefits of knowing:
- Your beneficiaries may gain access to your assets faster than if they are transferred to them through a will.
- Most trusts avoid probate, which not only saves time but also court fees.
- If you choose to create an irrevocable trust, less taxes may be owed after your passing.
- Without a trust or will, your property will likely go to your spouse or closest heirs. If that is not your wish, you can designate who should receive your assets.
- A trust ensures that the state will not be able to choose on your behalf who should be the legal guardian of your minor children. A trust attorney in Sacramento, CA parents choose in similar circumstances may specify in your trust exactly who should be responsible to care for your children in the event you pass away.
- If you become incapacitated in such a way that you are unable to care for your children, a trust may legally specify who should care for them until, or unless, you are eventually able to resume that responsibility.
- If you become incapacitated in such a way that you are unable to make major financial decisions, a trust could legally specify how your assets should be handled and who can take charge of them.
- When you choose a trust attorney Sacramento, CA residents recommend from the Yee Law Group, you may specify if your assets should be portioned out over time and in what amounts to your heirs.
- A trust attorney Sacramento, CA community members turn to for help with important estate planning services and can advise you on how to maximize tax savings for your distribution of assets.
What To Look For in a Trust Attorney
Before you start looking for a trust attorney in Sacramento, CA, such as those found at the Yee Law Group, you need to write down what you need. For example, do you have an existing trust that needs to be updated or do you want to set up a trust from scratch? Will you require a will, powers of attorney or other legal documents? Are you simply looking for future tax advice? Once you determine what you need, look for law firms that provide those services.
Your next consideration should be the attorney’s experience. Typically, you should search for someone with at least five years of experience in estate or trust law. In addition, ask the attorneys about their experience with the types of services you need. You need someone with experience in every aspect of estate planning. In addition, if you have a business, you need someone who understands and has experience in business succession planning.
In addition, search for attorneys or firms that spend a significant portion of their time on trust or estate planning law. If the firm or attorney has a large percentage of these types of cases, they should be up to date on new regulations and technologies.
Ask around about the firms or attorneys you are considering. If you have friends or loved ones who have recently completed an estate plan, you can ask about their experiences, but don’t be afraid to ask other legal professionals you know, even if they practice a different type of law. A reputable attorney will be well known in the community, and their reputations will be shared openly.
Also, when you contact an estate planning firm, such as the Yee Law Group, ask for references of current or past clients. Understand that they are bound by attorney-client privilege and cannot discuss what they do for each client, but they should have permission to use some of their clients as references. Be sure to check these references. Also, check their status with the state bar.
When you hire a trust attorney in Sacramento, CA, you will work closely with this professional for a period of time. Therefore, you should search for someone you can work with easily. This relationship is personal, and you will share very personal details with your attorney. If you don’t trust or can’t communicate with this person, you will have difficulty working together. If you believe you can establish a comfortable rapport, you will be more willing to open up about your family situation, including conflicts within the family; finances, end-of-life decisions and concerns. This will help you choose guardians for your minor children, distribute your assets and find the right executor or trustees.
We Offer a Free Consultation
To find out more about how we may help you, contact us to schedule a free consultation. One of our trust attorneys can review your case and may offer guidance on how you may wish to move forward with establishing a trust. Contact the Yee Law Group at 916-927-9001 when you need a respected trust attorney Sacramento, CA can provide.
Common Types of Trust Litigation
While it would be ideal for the distribution of an estate plan to always run smoothly, our Sacramento, CA trust attorneys will tell you it doesn’t always happen that way. Sometimes relatives aren’t happy with what’s in the trust and may try to challenge it in court. In some cases, working with the Yee Law Group can help to mitigate issues that may arise. Here are some of the most common types of trust litigation:
Parents can choose to disinherit their children from their estate plan for a number of reasons. Maybe they believe one child is well off enough and doesn’t need an inheritance. Or maybe they had a falling out with their child years ago and no longer speak to them. Our Sacramento, CA trust attorneys have seen children who get disinherited feel as though they are being treated unjustly and try to challenge the trust in court.
In order for a trust to be valid in court, the person who creates it must be of sound mind. If it’s determined that the trustee was mentally incapacitated, the trust could be challenged in court.
A trust can also go through litigation if it’s discovered that the creator was coerced by another person to make changes to their trust. A Sacramento, CA trust attorney shares that undue influence is more common among the elderly population. Seniors may be more vulnerable to suggestions from their relatives and other people they trust. For example, if an elderly person gave their entire estate to their caretaker, but had great relationships with his or her children and grandchildren, there may be a red flag.
If a trustee has unpaid debts after he or she dies, the debts must be paid before beneficiaries receive anything. If the estate is distributed before paying off creditors, they have a right to file a claim in court to get their money.
A Sacramento, CA trust attorney will tell you that trust can also go through litigation if it’s believed that there was some kind of fraud involved. For example, if beneficiaries believe that the signature in the trust was forged, they can challenge the document in court.
Breach of Fiduciary Duty
The trustee of a trust has to follow certain fiduciary duties. If this person fails to follow these duties, the beneficiaries may challenge the descendant’s estate.
Avoiding Trust Litigation
There are many types of litigation that our Sacramento, CA trust attorneys have experienced. You don’t want your heirs to deal with that kind of frustration. That’s why it’s a good idea to consult with an experienced Sacramento, California trust attorney. He or she can look over your trust and check for errors.
At the Yee Law Group, we know how complex trusts can be. We have helped many people establish valid trusts and are here to assist you. Contact our Sacramento, CA trust attorney today for a free consultation.
Common Myths About Trusts
There are many benefits to establishing a trust, including avoiding probate, maintaining privacy and allowing you to have control of your finances during your lifetime. However, many myths still exist about trusts, including:
- Trusts Are Only for Rich People: This is one of the most common misconceptions about trusts. However, as a trust attorney in Sacramento, CA can confirm, trusts are not intended just for the wealthy. Although it’s common for wealthy people to establish trusts, many people with average incomes create trusts and experience many advantages from them.
- Trusts Just Benefit Beneficiaries, Not Grantors: It is true that many people establish trusts to ensure their assets go to the right people after they die. However, trusts can also benefit the grantor when they’re still alive. For example, if you can state who you want to handle your financial and legal affairs should you become mentally or physically incapacitated at some point.
- Trusts Are Too Expensive to Set Up: Although a trust does require more upfront fees than a traditional will, it can help you save more money in the long run. The document can help your family members avoid the probate process after you are gone, helping them save thousands of dollars in attorney and court fees. You do not have to worry about your assets getting depleted with a trust.
- A Will Can Do Everything a Trust Can: A trust can do several things that will simply can’t. For instance, a trust can provide protection for beneficiaries who are not mature enough to handle large sums of money in the beginning. The document can specify that your chosen trustee can make distributions to support a beneficiary. If you have young kids, a trust can dictate how they should receive the funds, when and for what purpose. This can give you more control of how your children will be provided for.
- It Is Always Best to Name a Family Member as a Trustee: At first, it may seem like a good idea to name one of your relatives as an executor of your trust. However, this may not always be beneficial. Some people may not be responsible enough to take on this kind of case. If you can’t find anyone who can fulfill this role, it may be better to appoint an independent third party to act as the trustee.
Living Trust Questions You Should Ask Your Attorney
Why Should I Create a Living Trust?
A reputable trust attorney in Sacramento CA, such as those found in the Yee Law Group, can give you a list of reasons why you should create a living trust. These lawyers understand the benefits of avoiding probate, which saves you and your heirs’ money. You can also customize your trust. For example, you can insert clauses that delay certain distributions. Living trusts can also be dissolved, and they remain private even after your death.
You and your heirs may also experience tax benefits. For example, AB trusts, which are a type of living trust, can be passed directly to your spouse without having to pay estate taxes. In addition, because your heirs do not have to go through probate, they will not have to pay probate costs.
What Assets Can Be Included in My Living Trust?
Your trust can include most of your assets. However, your trust attorney in Sacramento CA should inform you that life insurance and some retirement accounts cannot be included in a living trust. These accounts need to be distributed through the probate system. You also need to change ownership of these assets from you to your living trust so that they are fully covered. You should update your trust periodically to ensure that all your available assets are transferred because any that are not will have to go through probate, which may leave them vulnerable to your state’s intestacy laws.
Do I Also Need a Will?
Because not all of your assets are covered by a trust, you should still have a will. In addition, a will is a type of insurance that your personal desires are met after your death. Your will can also state that any assets that qualify but were left out of your trust are added to your trust, so all your assets are protected.
Who Should I List as My Trustee?
Any reputable law firm, such as the Yee Law Group, should give you a list of possible trustees. First, you can be your own trustee. However, you will need to identify a successor trustee who will take over the management of your trust in the case of your death.
In addition, your trust attorney in Sacramento CA should direct you to name a power of attorney in case you are incapacitated. This individual or individuals will be responsible for making your medical, legal and financial decisions on your behalf. Be sure this person or these individuals are trustworthy.
Preparing For You Trust Attorney Consultation
When you’re ready to plan your estate with a trust attorney in Sacramento, CA, make the most of your first appointment by being prepared. There is a lot to discuss to determine what your needs are and how to proceed. Here’s what you should do to prepare for your first meeting.
Organize Your Documents
Planning your estate with Yee Law Group requires you to review a lot of paperwork. Having the following documents available at the first consultation makes the process more efficient.
- Life Insurance Policies– Life insurance policies are vital to your trust because they may be the only payment source for your beneficiaries. If you already have an established life insurance policy, collect all the information about how much your policy pays upon your death, who your beneficiaries are and the policy number.
- Business Ownership Documents– If you run your own company, provide your attorney with all your business ownership documents, especially if you have a partner. You should already have an established contract with your partners regarding the division of assets if one party dies. A trust attorney in Sacramento, CA, can assist you in creating this plan if you don’t already have one.
- Real Estate Deeds– When you own property and plan on transferring or selling it upon your death, you need to provide the deed of ownership to your lawyer. Ensure that the entire deed gets copied as all information must match what’s on file in the country recorder’s office.
- Financial Statements– Provide the front page of your most recent checking and savings accounts to your attorney. This page must include the current balances, name and of your financial institution and your name. If you have additional investment accounts such as 401Ks or IRAs, provide that information o your trust attorney in Sacramento, CA, as well.
- Stock Certificates– You must document any money you have invested in stocks to ensure proper transfer of ownership to your beneficiary.
Select Your Executor
It’s up to you to select a responsible person to oversee your estate and trust when you pass away. This person is in charge of ensuring people do as you have requested in your will and that your beneficiaries receive what you have given them. It’s wise to choose someone you know will abide by your wishes and be strong enough to see them through. If you don’t want to have a family member do this job, a lawyer from Yee Law Group can help you find a professional fiduciary.
Trusts Handled By Yee Law Group
As you may now understand, there are a number of preconceived notions, albeit myths, about trusts. In truth, trust can be one of the most valuable estate planning tools for an individual or couple who has assets or property. A leading Sacramento, CA trust attorney can review your personal situation and provide you with guidance about what tools are suited to your needs.
There are many benefits to a trust; yet, not all trusts will have the same benefits. Some are appropriate for large sums of money; whereas others are ideal for antique or gun collections. A lawyer from our firm can sit down with you to determine what kind of trust would be best for your estate plan.
The Most Common Types of Trusts
The following are the most common trusts utilized by a trust attorney Sacramento, CA residents know and prefer.
Trusts for Minors
When the trust is to be used for a minor, or person under the age of 18, a lawyer might recommend drafting a special trust for minors. Usually these trusts are meant to ensure the child will have access to education, healthcare, extracurricular activities, and other important forms of support. Once the child turns a certain age, not necessarily 18, or reaches a specific level of achievement, they may be granted access to funds or other elements of the trust.
Special Needs Trusts
When there is a person with a special need, or who has a disability, a special needs trust may be necessary. These are particularly beneficial in that they protect your beneficiaries’ government benefits.
A married couple might elect to draft a trust for two primary reasons: the first being related to taxes and the second regarding the protection of property. A marital trust can ensure all assets go to the right person. For example, if either spouse has been married before, and has children from that marriage, a trust might be an ideal tool to ensure all parties receive the desired assets.
Revocable Living Trusts
A revocable living trust is separate from a will but works with it in the estate plan. Usually, these trusts are incorporated into a plan so the beneficiaries can avoid probate. Some lawyers will recommend them when there is a property in multiple states or countries.
Irrevocable Life Insurance Trusts
Irrevocable life insurance trusts are beneficial when insurance proceeds need to be moved. These trusts are exclusively beneficial for tax reasons. If you are interested in this tool, be sure to talk with a trust attorney in Sacramento, California.
When you are trying to protect your assets from creditors, a spendthrift trust might be recommended. These are complicated trusts and will almost certainly need to be further explained by a trust attorney from Yee Law Group.
You Can Save Money With a Trust
The probate process is very time consuming and costly. Many people can actually save money by incorporating a trust into their estate plan. If you are interested in knowing more about whether a trust is right for you, please call a trust attorney in Sacramento, CA.
“I highly recommend the Yee Law Group. They are very professional and knowledgeable and I have always had a good experience working with their attorneys and staff. They have earned my trust and confidence for my future needs as well. Great job guys!”