Pour-Over Will Lawyer
Many people who have put plans into place to avoid probate assume they no longer need to have a will.However, there are many reasons you should have your attorney prepare a pour-over will to use in conjunction with your living trust and other probate-avoidance strategies.
Huizenga Law can protect your loved ones easily and efficiently with a pour-over will tailored to your specific needs and goals.
How a Pour-Over Will Works
A pour-over will is used most often in conjunction with a revocable living trust. Property that has been properly transferred into the trust will go directly to alternate beneficiaries when you pass away. Any property that does not pass through a beneficiary clause or joint ownership or your trust would be covered by the pour-over will.
The terms of the will specify that remaining property in your estate should go to your trust. Then it will pass to your designated alternate beneficiaries. A pour-over will essentially acts as a safety net.
What Happens if You Don’t Have a Will?
Without a will, any property that is in your estate when you pass away doesn’t necessarily go to the people who you want to have it. It will pass according to the Iowa laws of intestate succession. These laws divide up property according to legal formulas that may be completely out of line with your wishes.
For instance, if you do not title your car in the name of the trust, that car becomes part of your estate. The law may determine that the car must be sold so proceeds can be divided among relatives, regardless of whether you were on speaking terms with those relatives.
A Pour-Over Will Can Enforce the Terms of Your Trust
When your child or whoever you have designated as your alternate trustee steps in to administer your trust, they will have to prove the validity of their position and authority to have access to accounts to pay bills and distribute assets. If you leave a pour-over will designating that same individual as your personal representative, the document reinforces the authority of your trustee and can make it easier for them to complete the necessary tasks.
Critical Factors to Understand About Pour-Over Wills
If you have established a special needs trust or other type of irrevocable trust, you can also use a pour-over will to transfer assets to that trust. A pour-over will completes the process of designating how you want your assets to be distributed and reduces confusion for loved ones.
When you leave assets in your estate and those assets are transferred through the pour-over will, they will usually still need to pass through probate. The probate process may be very simple if assets are quite limited.
If you want to name guardians for your children or accomplish other actions with your will, it may be wise to create a document with additional complexity that still transfers assets into your chosen trust.
Work with Huizenga Law to Fully Protect Your Family with a Pour-Over Will
Family members are often confused about how to handle legal and financial matters when a loved one passes away. Leaving a complete and cohesive estate plan in place reduces the uncertainty and the potential for conflict.
A pour-over will is often an essential component in a thorough estate plan. To talk to Huizenga Law about adding a pour-over will or other documents to protect your loved ones, give us a call.