Trusts Archives

What should I know about generation-skipping trusts?

You may be drawn to a generation-skipping trust because of its ability to help you plan for your grandchildren’s future. Through this estate planning tool, you will be able to place a certain portion of your estate into a trust that will bypass your children and directly benefit the next generation.

Understanding the cy pres doctrine in Oklahoma trusts

A charitable trust in Oklahoma gives you the ability to list either a specific organization or a general cause to which you wish to leave a legacy. At Ball & Morse, PLLC, we know how important it is that your wishes are kept. However, there are some circumstances in which your original plan cannot be honored. In those situations your estate or trustee will have to act under the cy pres doctrine.

Providing for pets in an Oklahoma estate plan

As a pet is often considered a part of the family, it is imperative to remember to include it in an estate plan. An Oklahoma law enacted in 2010 allows for people to create a trust that will provide care for a domestic animal. Currently, 46 states have such laws in place, giving animal owners peace of mind that their furry friends will be cared for upon the owner’s death.

What is a living trust?

There are many options at your disposal when you are doing your estate planning. One item that will likely come up is a living trust. This tool gives an appointed person, known as a trustee, control over assets that have been designated for a beneficiary or heir. Many people in Oklahoma use living trusts because of their many benefits.

Avoid estate taxes with an irrevocable life insurance trust

Oklahoma does not collect estate taxes, unlike some other states. However, people may have to pay federal taxes. In 2013, the U.S. Congress approved a permanent estate tax exemption that adjusts each year with inflation. Today, the exemption threshold is at $5.43 million, meaning people with assets totaling less than that can avoid the 40 percent tax rate.

Use a trust to protect your collection in estate planning

Whether your hobby is stamps, art or any other valuable item, it is important to remember to make your collection a part of your estate planning. At Ball & Morse, PLLC, we take pride in helping people determine what to do with their collections. One option is to put the items into a trust, which offers a number of benefits.

A trust may protect an incapacitated parent from financial abuse

When it comes to estate planning, many Oklahoma City residents may not expect that they could end up being the ones to handle the financial affairs of their parents. Sadly, not all people are able to enter their final years with their mental capacities intact. There are numerous age-related conditions, from stroke to dementia and Alzheimer’s disease, which can rob senior citizens of their ability to make informed and rational decisions.

Family members serving as trustees may face difficult challenges

Family members are often called upon to serve as trustees for the estates of other relatives. During their trust planning, Oklahoma City residents might believe it is in the best interests of their beneficiaries to designate a trustee who personally knows the heirs. It is understandable to think that a family trustee will keep the best interests of other family members in mind when dealing with trust issues.

Is a living trust or will best for you?

You naturally want what is best for your loved ones after your death. You may think that preparing a will is the only thing you can do, but there are actually other options for Oklahoma City residents that can give them more flexibility over their asset management and distribution. One of these options is called a living trust. Its greatest advantage is arguably the ability to allow you to manage your trust property before your death.

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