Category Archives for Living Trust

What is a Living Will?

Whitney’s Tax Files is a video segment in which Whitney L. Sorrell, JD, CPA, MBA of Sorrell Law Firm, PLC answers commonly asked questions relating to Estate Planning, Tax, and Business Law. In this edition, Whitney explains the purpose of a Living Will.

“What is a living will?” A lot of confusion between a living will and a living trust. A living trust is a testamentary document that says, “Here’s who gets my assets when I’m dead, and here are the terms of them getting these assets.” A living will is very different.Continue reading

Are Handwritten Wills Enforceable? Princess Diana Thought So…

Princess Diana was one of the world’s most loved celebrities – and one of the richest.  Her tragic death in 1997 was world news. The majority of her estate, reportedly worth $40 million at the time of her death, was divided between Prince William and Prince Harry in her estate plan. However, she also prepared a handwritten will that directed her executors to give a number of personal effects to her godchildren. Those executors, her mother and her sister, went to court and had it ruled unenforceable.

However, she also prepared a handwritten will that directed her executors to give a number of personal effects to her godchildren. Those executors, her mother and her sister, went to court and had it ruled unenforceable.Continue reading

Living Trust Incentive Provisions

This edition of Whitney’s Tax Files answers a question from a client who asks, “How can I stop my kids from blowing the money after I die?” Well, the statistics show that most people go through their inheritance after about ten months, and most estate plans, the standard forms that you see, they say, “Give my kids all the income every year, and then they can have a third, a third, a third at this age, that age, and the other age.” Essentially, we are not providing any incentive for our children, and so long as our children survive to the next year, they get more money, whether they’re being responsible or not, so there’s a couple things that we can do to protect them from themselves.Continue reading

Will or a Trust? What’s the difference?

“What is the difference between a will and a trust, and why would I want a trust and not a will?” A will is a document that says, “Upon my death, here’s what happens to my assets.” It does nothing while you’re alive. So, if you’re alive and you become disabled, the will doesn’t help because it’s not yet effective, and so you need to go to a guardianship or conservatorship type of proceedings, and it’s expensive and not desirable.Continue reading

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Wills vs. Trusts

Confused about the differences between wills and trusts?  If so, you’re not alone. While it’s always wise to contact experts like us, it’s also important to understand the basics. Here’s a quick and simple reference guide:Continue reading

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