Property you may not be able to leave by a Will
Estate planning is a complex process that involves making important decisions about your assets and how they will be distributed after you pass away. For most people, creating a will is a crucial part of the estate planning process. However, it is important to understand that certain types of property cannot be disposed of through a will.
Here are some of the property you may not be able to leave by a will:
1. Joint property cannot be disposed of through a will. This refers to any property that is owned jointly with another person. For example, if you own a house with your spouse, you cannot leave your half of the house to someone else through your will. Instead, the ownership of the property will automatically pass to the surviving joint owner upon your death. If you want to leave your share of the property to someone else, you will need to take specific legal steps to sever the joint tenancy.
2. Property held in a trust also cannot be disposed of through a will. A trust is a legal arrangement in which one person (the trustee) holds and manages property for the benefit of another person (the beneficiary). If you have set up a trust, the property held in the trust will not pass through your will. Instead, it will be distributed according to the terms
of the trust agreement. This is why it is essential to review and update your trust agreement regularly to ensure that your wishes are being carried out.
3. Retirement accounts, such as 401(k)s and IRAs, are also types of property that cannot be disposed of through a will. Instead, they are passed on to the designated beneficiary of the account. It is important to review your beneficiary designations regularly to ensure that they are up to date and reflect your current wishes.
4. Life insurance policies are another type of property that cannot be disposed of through a will. The proceeds of a life insurance policy are paid directly to the designated beneficiary of the policy, regardless of what your will may say. Again, it is crucial to review your beneficiary designations regularly to ensure that they are up to date.
5. Finally, certain types of property, such as assets held in a living trust or assets that have a designated beneficiary, are not subject to probate. Probate is the legal process by which a will is validated and assets are distributed. If an asset is not subject to probate, it will not be distributed according to the terms of your will.
It is crucial to understand these complexities when creating an estate plan. Estate planning is a significant investment of time and resources, but it can provide peace of mind knowing that your assets will be distributed according to your wishes.
At We The People, we offer several affordable estate planning package options. Click here to navigate to our Wills & Living Trusts page to learn more.
Disclaimer: This content is for informational pruposes only and should not be considered legal advice. Consult with a licensed and qualified attorney for advice specific to your situation.
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