Wills and Trusts Information
There are a variety of tools, including wills and trusts, that make sure you keep control of what happens to your assets and children when you are unable to speak on your own behalf. The most commom estate planning tools I use are Wills and Living Trusts.
What happens without a Will or Living Trust?
When a person dies and does not have a Will or Trust, that person is said to have died "intestate." Michigan law then governs how your property is distributed. In the case of deceased parents with young children, the law requires that family members of both deceased parents have standing to argue who should be the Guardian and Conservator of the children. In addition, the Probate Court has continuing jurisdiction over the matter, similar to custody hearings in a divorce. If no one from either side of the family agrees or is able to act as Guardian, the Probate Court will choose for you.
The Benefits of Estate Planning
Estate planning gives you the peace of mind knowing that you minimized the stress of your circumstances for your family. It assures that your children will have a guardian of your choosing and minimizes or eliminates the cost of probate. The various tools used will also allow your beneficiaries to gain immediate access to your assets.