Do You Need a Trust? Estate Planning Q&A

According to the 2023 Wills and Estate Planning Survey by, only 34 percent of Americans have an estate plan. The primary reasons respondents gave for not participating in estate planning are: Procrastination Believing they need more assets Not knowing how to make an estate plan An estate plan is a comprehensive set of legal documents and strategies that organizes assets for a person’s death or disability. Trusts are legal arrangements used in estate planning, alongside wills and advance directives. Trusts as an Estate Planning Arrangement A trust allows one person, known as the trustee, to manage funds and assets for one

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Living Trusts vs. Wills: Which Is Right for You?

Planning for the future is crucial, especially when it comes to protecting your assets and loved ones. Estate planning provides the opportunity to make important decisions about how your estate will be handled after you’re gone. In this realm, two common options arise: living trusts and wills. Both serve important purposes, but understanding the differences between them will help you make an informed decision about which one is the best fit for your specific needs. Let’s explore the features and benefits of living trusts and wills to help you determine the right option for your estate planning journey. Living Trusts:

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How To Avoid Probate in Massachusetts

As Massachusetts estate planning attorneys, one of the most common questions we’re often asked is, “How can I avoid probate?” Probate is the legal process of settling a deceased person’s estate, and it can be time-consuming and costly. Fortunately, there are several ways to avoid probate and ensure that your assets are distributed according to your wishes. One of the most effective ways to avoid probate is to create a revocable living trust. A living trust is a legal entity that can hold your assets during your lifetime and distribute them after your death. You can transfer ownership of your

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Does a Revocable Trust Protect My Home from Nursing Home Expenses?

A common question from many Massachusetts homeowners is does my revocable Trust protect my home from potential nursing home and long-term care expenses? While a revocable Trust offers many advantages, protecting your home from nursing home expenses is not one of them. In this article, we will discuss the definition of a revocable Trust, examples of how it can be used to protect assets, and alternative options to safeguard your home from potential nursing home expenses. What is a Revocable Trust? A revocable Trust, also known as a living Trust, is a legal entity created by a person during their

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Disclaiming An Inheritance in Massachusetts

Disclaiming an inheritance is a legal process by which an individual chooses to renounce their right to inherit property or assets left to them by a deceased person. In the state of Massachusetts, disclaiming an inheritance can be a useful tool for those who wish to avoid the legal and financial obligations that come with inheriting property or assets. What is Disclaiming an Inheritance? Disclaiming an inheritance is a legal way to refuse to accept property or assets that are being passed on to you by a deceased person. By disclaiming, you are essentially saying that you do not want

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Support a Charity – and Your Loved Ones – With a CLAT

A charitable lead annuity trust (CLAT) is an estate planning tool whereby a person (grantor) creates a trust that initially benefits a charitable organization, foundation, or other qualifying entity for a defined period. After this time ends, the CLAT’s remaining assets are distributed to non-charitable beneficiaries, usually a grantor’s loved ones or family members. Depending on how it is structured, a CLAT may be able to reduce a person’s estate and gift taxes. Characteristics of CLATs CLATs are irrevocable trusts and can be created and funded during a grantor’s lifetime or through that grantor’s will. The grantor can fund the

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