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Have you got grandchildren whose future you worry about? Are you worried that estate taxes will eat up the inheritance you leave for your family?

Do you feel that your heirs will fight over the estate without clear instructions? Would you like to leave some of your estate to charity?


There are no easy answers here but all are important questions about your finances. A useful way to put your mind, and those of your heirs, at ease is to draw up a will and trust.

Sometimes, more than one type of trust is useful but you need to get started somewhere. But before getting into trusts, thinking about your will and who you want included in it are a start.

You may first want to think about your closest loved ones such as any spouses and children. Once you have decided what is best for them you can start thinking about grandchildren, nieces, nephews and friends.

If you don’t have any close family, then perhaps friends or charity would be your first concern. A will is the basis for the distribution of your assets after your death.

Estate taxes can be quite substantial after your death. If you leave a large estate, they can be more than half the overall value. With this in mind, you may want to set up a trust that pays to your heirs before your death.

This strategy has the double benefit of making sure your heirs get tax free benefits during your lifetime while potentially reducing the amount of taxable estate when you die. Talking with a tax attorney is the best way to mull over the details here, but do a little bit of your own research first so you can ask the right questions.

Other types of trust can be designed to provide income for your loved ones both before and after your death. These are especially useful for spouses and small children.

These also can be title irrevocable trusts but their other useful strategies that serve the same purpose just as well. Trusts are an indispensible part of planning any estate that will be subject to heavy taxes but also for looking after your loved ones after your death. They provide a safety net.

Attention! We are not attorneys and we are not lawyers. We cannot represent customers, select legal forms, or give advice on rights or laws. The article provided is for information ONLY and is NOT a substitute for the advice of a lawyer.