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Dying Intestate, Trusts, and Wills: How do they differ?

At LifePlanLaw.com – Blackburn Law Firm, PLLC, we are passionate about helping individuals understand what generally happens if you or a loved one die, intestate (without a trust or will), with a will, as well as with a revocable living trust. For this post, we illustrate an example of an individual with two kids and no spouse: last will paperwork

 

Intestate

If you pass away intestate, your property and accounts will undergo probate and everyone will know who got what, what you owed, and what you owned. Your credit card companies, car loan company, mortgage company, and any other creditors you may have will seek payment on balances owed at the point of your death.

Remember that since your passing away has been published to alert creditors, it isn’t uncommon for predators to pop up and command payment – even if they aren’t owed anything.

If you have minor children and pass away without a valid will, the court decides who raises your child.

Dying intestate means the Florida Statutes will determine how your estate is distributed – irrespective of what you may have intended.

Will

If you pass away with a will, your property and accounts still will undergo the process of probate. But after creditors are paid, the rest of the property and accounts go to whomever you have named within the will. The court oversees this process, but having a will in place enables you to tell the court precisely how you want any affairs to be dealt with. However, a public probate still is guaranteed.

 

Trust

Trusts allow you to control your property and accounts through your selected trustee, avoid probate, as well as leave certain directions in order for your children to be cared for – without getting a lump sum at an age in which they’re more than likely to squander it or get it taken from them. You can also give your kids asset protection.

Don’t allow the will vs. trust controversy to linger in your mind. Contact our office today at 727-826-0923 and we will go over your options and help you navigate estate planning solutions. We’re available for virtual and in-person consultations.

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