Texas residents are encouraged to start the estate planning process as soon as possible. They are also encouraged to review their plans on a regular basis once it has been created. Individuals will need to first decide what they need their plans to accomplish and the tools that they will use to accomplish them. In many cases, a trust will be enough to minimize estate tax bills or allow for greater control over assets.
In addition to creating a trust, it will be necessary to pick the right person to manage it. It is possible to appoint a child, sibling or another close family member to serve as a trustee. Those who don’t have close friends or family members capable of managing their assets properly could choose to hire a professional for the role. A professional trustee has a fiduciary responsibility to the trust, which means that he or she must act in a beneficiary’s best interests.
It is a good idea to have regular conversations with family members about how an estate plan is structured. These conversations can be as narrow or broad as a person wants them to be, but the goal is to ensure that everyone understands what is supposed to happen when an individual passes on. Keeping the lines of communication open may also minimize the chances of conflict between family members.
The process of creating a will, trust or other estate planning documents may be a complex one. Therefore, it may be in a person’s best interest to create them with the help of an attorney. An attorney may be able to ensure that assets are titled in a trust’s name or that beneficiary designations forms are filled out. Taking these steps may minimize the chances of a future legal challenge.