You’re gonna die! But we can help with a surprise there, too.

WIIFY – A quick lesson on avoiding passing a surprise to your loved ones and a tip to potentially lower the costs. Learn a new ‘thing’ – tl;dr.  tl;dr means too long, didn’t read and is a summary for you! Note – not pretending to be an attorney here, just noting some generally available information and recommending you see an attorney.

tl;dr – Put your assets in a trust and make them easy to transfer and avoid probate at death. Use a legal plan to potentially save significant money on setting up the trust.

End of retirement planning
Sorry dear reader, but the end of retirement, as some euphemistically call death, will happen for all. When you die, married or not, someone has to handle your ‘estate’: real estate (house), tangible personal property (your gnome collection), and your intangible personal property (stocks, bonds).  Don’t surprise your loved ones, plan some in advance.

Trust
An easy way to not surprise your loved ones is to have most of the big stuff in a trust.  Work with a licensed attorney in your state on this. A trust is essentially a legal holding entity that can ‘own’ assets and give them or income from them to a ‘beneficiary’ (could be you) and lets the trustee (could be you while alive and, on death, pass to a spouse or child(ren) distribute the assets.  The distribution of the assets at death with a trust is much simpler, faster, and in my experience cheaper, than probate.  We only needed a death certificate to distribute the in-laws’ assets from their trust.

Legal plan
My daughter and son-in-law were going to get a trust and made noises about getting a trust as a birthday gift (the gift that keeps on giving!) Trusts are not inexpensive, so I looked at the legal plan available through their work.  It covered trusts and one of the attorneys in the plan is an excellent attorney that we used for out trusts. The legal plan cost was about $300, so they signed up for the legal plan and I gave them a $300 present, which saved them (or me?) about $700.

Up next – Look for the next update on Friday, July 28 at 12:30 PM.

Actions you can take:
Read more on trusts.
-Check out your legal plan at work or, if you don’t have a legal plan at work, search the web for ‘legal plan’ and see what the cost benefit is for a trust.

Questions, comments, or suggestions for retirement surprise areas you want to know more about?
-Leave a comment
-Use ‘Contact’, above, to send an email.

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