Assigning trustees helps to protect estates

Planning for late life can be a stressful topic for some people. Many British Columbia residents may feel reticent about planning for their own eventual mortality, often putting off estate planning for a later date. However, some experts suggest that assigning beneficiaries, trustees and establishing a will are all positive steps to take sooner than later in planning for the distribution of an estate. 

It is a well-known fact that estates that are unprepared for the death of the estate holder may be subject to a variety of costly taxes if certain paperwork is not in place detailing the last wishes of the holder. While most people immediately think of a will as the primary document in preventing this loss, some estate holders also choose to assign trustees to a trust they hold in their name. So-called "non-retirement funds" can be sheltered in living trusts from public probate. 

However, if no trustee is appointed beyond the estate holder, the estate runs the risk of being subject to probate and the associated costs. Assigning co-trustees or secondary-trustees, or designating an executor of the estate, can help to further safeguard the estate from these costs. Considering these potentials well in advance is the mark of intelligent estate planning. 

Nobody wants to think about the deaths of their loved ones, or indeed their own mortality. However, in assigning trustees and executors to an estate, British Columbia residents can help to protect their estates from the harsh realities of tax law. This, in turn, can help the entire family rest easier, knowing their future inheritances are assured in a the appropriate manner. 

Source: yourwestvalley.com, "Estate planning helps wishes come true", Adam Carlat, March 8, 2017

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