Hoover Wills & Estate Planning Attorney
Proper estate planning is an important step to take in ensuring that your financial interests are protected, your last wishes are carried out, and that your family and friends are not forgotten in what will be a hard time on them all. Planning for the end of life is obviously not on the top of most people’s list of priorities, yet it is a crucial procedure all the same. The Hoover wills & estate planning attorneys of Cloud Willis & Ellis, LLC are experienced in all manners of estate planning, including wills, trusts, power of attorney, advanced healthcare directives, conservatorships, and guardianships. We can assist you in legally protecting your heirs, finances, value of your estate, and, often most importantly, your last wishes.
Wills, Trusts, Probate, and More
An estate plan assesses everything from a will to power of attorney. Every estate plan starts with a will, and may end there too. Or, it may entail a trust to avoid excessive taxation, advanced healthcare directive, gifting, and more. There are many options when designing an estate plan that covers all of your needs. Do you need to create a trust? Or can a simple will cover everything? What is probate and how can it be avoided? These sort of questions can be answered by one of our experienced Hoover estate planning attorneys during a consultation. Much of your estate planning depends on the assets that you leave behind and your specific wishes pertaining to end-of-life healthcare scenarios.
The Difference Between a Will and a Trust
A will is a simple legal document that determines who your property goes to when you pass away. An executor is appointed to uphold your will; the executor can be a friend, family member, attorney, or other person whom you trust. For many people, a will is all they require. And, when creating an estate plan, a will is generally created in addition to a trust. By creating a trust, you avoid the process of probate, which is the official proving of a will in court, and avoid probate costs, which can be up to five percent of a will’s entire worth. Probate is a timely endeavor, and is open to debate and challenge. Disgruntled family members may challenge a will during probate, which is why a trust can be a better option to ensure that your final wishes are truly carried out.
Will I Have to Pay Estate Tax?
Alabama does not collect estate tax, according to the Alabama Department of Revenue. However, estates with over $5,490,000 for an individual (as of 2017 and set to inflation) must pay federal estate tax, according to the Internal Revenue Service. However, if you are leaving this much behind, or more, you may want to consider setting up an AB trust with your spouse, which splits the trust into two when one of the spouses passes. By doing this, a couple of two can avoid paying any estate tax when their combined worth is $10.98 million.
Call Us Today to Create a Will, Trust, Healthcare Directive, and More
Protect your last wishes, heirs, and property by creating an estate plan with the Hoover wills & estate planning attorneys of Cloud Willis & Ellis, LLC. Contact us today at 205-322-6060.