Best Trust Lawyers Phoenix Arizona
Why Should I Set Up a Living Trust?
If you want to set up a trust, you may want to consult with the best trust lawyers Phoenix AZ residents recommend. At Kamper & Estrada, PLLC, we have helped many people create trusts and want to make the process as simple as possible for you. With an experienced lawyer on your side to assist you with your trust, you may have better peace of mind.
Living trusts are also known as “revocable trusts”. When someone creates a living trust, they are known as the “Grantor”. A living trust is an entity created during a Grantor’s lifetime to hold assets, for the purpose of distributing them after the Grantor’s death. If at any time the Grantor decides they no longer want the trust, they have the right to revoke it. There are many benefits to having a living trust in place, ultimately it is up to you to decide what is best for you and your loved ones.
As a firm with the best trust lawyers Phoenix AZ respects, Kamper & Estrada, PLLC can assist in setting up the two types of living trusts:
- Revocable: A living trust can be revocable, which means assets are transferred into the name of the trust, but the Grantor retains the title and ability to alter them. A revocable living trust can be changed or revoked right up until the Grantor’s death. Revocable living trusts are the most common.
- Irrevocable: A living trust can also be irrevocable, meaning the Grantor relinquishes all their control and interest in assets to the trust. Once the trust retains title to the assets, the Grantor can no longer change or revoke anything.
The Trustees are in charge of managing the living trust. When the Grantor is alive, they may serve as the Trustees themselves. After the death of the Grantor, another person(s) will serve as the Trustee. It is important for the successor Trustees to understand what the goals of the trust are, so it’s always a good idea to leave the Trustee clear instructions on how to successfully manage and administer the trust.
If you’ve decided a living trust is the right option for you, you will need to hire an attorney. Cheaper online methods of creating a living trust do exist, but hiring a professional is the best way to ensure that: 1) your assets are truly protected, 2) the trust follows current law, and 3) that your wishes are carried out legally and correctly. Many experienced estate planning attorneys also offer additional services like financial planning and trust administration.
Benefits of Setting Up a Trust
By now, you likely are aware of how important estate planning is. You want to ensure your assets go to the right heirs upon your death. But is it better to set up a will or trust? Living trusts are less common than wills, but they can provide some wonderful benefits.
- Probate Isn’t Required: As best trust lawyers in Phoenix AZ can attest, one of the main benefits of a living trust is that it does not have to go through a probate process. This means your heirs will not have to wait months or years to receive their assets. In fact, they can obtain their assets within weeks.
- There Is More Privacy: If you are a private person, a living trust may be your best option. Unlike a will, a living trust is not made public when you die. You won’t have to worry about strangers finding out information about your assets. Your estate will be distributed in private, so your family will be free from disturbances.
- Your Heirs Can Save Money on Taxes: Setting up a living trust can also help your heirs avoid paying an inheritance tax, as best trust lawyers Phoenix AZ clients count on can explain. This allows your heirs receive the full gift you gave them.
- It Can Provide Funds for Educational Purposes: With a trust, it is also possible to provide money for college to your children, grandchildren, and other relatives, as best trust lawyers Phoenix AZ residents respect can confirm.
- It Allows Flexible Distribution: If you set up a trust, you have more flexibility on how your assets will be distributed upon your death. For example, if a beneficiary is unable to manage money well, you could distribute the funds in smaller amounts. This way, he or she will not be able to spend the money all at once.
- There Are Fewer Family Feuds: Best Phoenix trust lawyers can tell you that setting up trusts often eliminate family feuds. Living trusts are more customizable than wills and allow you to detail the exact items you want to give to each beneficiary. If it is clear who gets what, there will be fewer arguments.
Do Living Trusts Pay Taxes?
People often set up a trust to makes things easier on their family when they pass away, and to provide for the future of their family. However, taxes on trusts can sometimes make things very complicated. The short answer to the question “do trusts pay taxes?” is . . . well, . . . it depends.
The long answer, as one of the best trust lawyers Phoenix AZ endorses might say, is that the structure of the trust will greatly influence how complicated the taxes will be. If simplicity is the goal, provisions can be included to accomplish that. And if complicity is the goal, lawyers can easily make things complicated. Trusts are taxable entities, however, who pays the taxes (the trust itself or the individual who created it) can vary depending on how the trust was set up.
- Grantor (Revocable)Trusts: In a Grantor trust, sometimes called a “revocable trust” the Grantor (the person who created the trust) usually retains the right to add and remove assets from the trust. When the Grantor retains this sort of control, the benefit is such that the trust itself generally does not need to file its own tax return. Rather the Grantor, the person creating the trust, would file their own individual tax return and list any income from the trust assets.
- Non-Grantor (Irrevocable) Trust: In an irrevocable trust where the Grantor doesn’t have the ability to add and remove assets, the trust is considered an independent entity that owns the assets and the trust itself must file a tax return. If money is distributed to the beneficiaries, then whether it is taxable or not to the beneficiaries will depend on whether principal or income was distributed, and if it was income, then whether it was tax-free income or retained income from previous years that the trust has already paid tax on. If a trust distributes money to a beneficiary, the trust may also be entitled to deductions for any distributable net income. After that, any leftover income gets taxed directly to the trust.
FAQ: I’m not married and I have no children. Should I still set up a trust?
It is very important for single people to pay attention to their estate planning. About half of older Americans are single and may face unique estate planning situations requiring advanced planning. These individuals would certainly benefit from the assistance of some of the best trust lawyers Phoenix AZ has to offer. At Kamper & Estrada, PLLC, our multi-generational firm has years of experience handling estate planning. If you’re searching for some of the best trust lawyers Phoenix AZ families depend on, we may help you set up a plan best suited to your situation.
What are some of the estate planning issues that specifically affect singles?
- Advanced Health Care Directives
- Pet Care
Advanced Health Care Directives
Single people need to declare a decision maker in the event their health deteriorates or an accident leaves them unable to make decisions for themselves. If you are single, it is important to designate someone you can trust to make health care or financial decisions on your behalf in case of an emergency. If such provisions are not in place, the responsibility could fall on state-appointed strangers or very distant relatives. If the state cannot find a family member, they may look to an heir to act on your behalf. This person might not understand your wishes regarding medical attention, end of life care, organ donations, and other important issues.
An advanced health care directive should specifically outline your requests and answer important health care questions that may arise should you become unable to speak for yourself. In addition to an advanced health care directive, you should also sign a general power of attorney and a HIPAA authorization. This allows an individual you trust to make difficult decisions on your behalf. A team of trust lawyers Phoenix AZ provides may help you fill out these documents.
If you have pets, you’ll want to make certain that there are provisions for them in your estate plan. You will need a caretaker as well as someone to manage funds that are designated for the care of your pet. If you do not have specific instructions regarding your pet, they could end up in a shelter. If you’re looking for the best trust lawyers Phoenix AZ may provide, ask about a “pet trust” and see if this is something that can be created in your state.
Retirement accounts, insurance policies, and bank accounts require holders to designate a beneficiary when the accounts are opened. Even if you have other instructions in your will, the beneficiary listed on these accounts will typically still receive preference. Make sure all your beneficiaries — including secondary beneficiaries — are updated and changed if necessary. If you were previously married or widowed, you may want your team of best trust lawyers in Phoenix AZ to review and update any changes.
If you are single with minor children, having an estate plan is essential. You’ll want to set up a trust to oversee the financial welfare of your children. Single parents need to select a guardian for their children. If this is not done, your children may end up in the care of someone you would have not selected.
Looking for a Team of Best Trust Lawyers Phoenix AZ Families Count On?
Whether you are married or single, if you don’t have an estate plan, you’ll likely find yourself looking for the best trust lawyers Phoenix AZ residents search for. At Kamper & Estrada, PLLC, we understand how overwhelming the estate planning process can be. That is why we want to help you with every step of the way. Our best trust lawyers Phoenix AZ clients rely on work hard for our clients. We may help you craft a comprehensive plan tailored to your situation to ensure that your wishes may be addressed exactly as you intended.
If you are searching for some of the best trust lawyers Phoenix AZ offers, contact Kamper & Estrada, PLLC at 602-730-7988.