In the minds of many people, estate planning basically means creating a last will. That is certainly a significant part of the estate planning process, but it isn't the only concern. Creating power of attorney documents to protect yourself in the event of incapacitation is also important. However, your options for estate planning in North Carolina are not that straightforward or limited.
In fact, there are many options available that can help you create a custom estate plan that uniquely suits your family situation. For many people, the creation of a trust can be a beneficial step in the estate planning process. You don't need to have a seven-figure income to find the use of a trust valuable in estate planning. While trusts do offer tax benefits, they have many other uses as well. There are many kinds of trusts, which each offer their own benefits.
Trusts allow you to provide for pets, special needs kids and addicted family members
Estate planning can be very tricky, especially when there are defenseless beings that depend on you. Whether you have a child with severe disabilities or a pet that you fear may outlive you, estate planning provides an opportunity to protect those you love. Creating a trust ensures that those dependent on you for their well-being will have adequare care and financial support even after you pass on.
For example, creating a trust that has language protecting your pet could help ensure that the trustee does not euthanize your pet after you die. You can place contingencies on the trust that require the trustee or beneficiaries only spend assets in a certain way or how much they can withdraw in any given period.
The same is true of a special needs trust, which can help ensure that your child has benefits and protections while also still connecting with state aid if necessary. A trust can also help you with children who have addiction or gambling problems by protecting them from their own worst behaviors.
A trust can give you more control over the management of your estate
Simply allocating specific portions of your estate to different heirs may not provide you with an adequate legacy. You may hope to provide for certain family members for years or contribute to a charity. Maybe you even want to start a scholarship fund. Trust are great way to manage this process.
Not only can they outline how assets get used, they can provide for the disposition of assets after the beneficiary dies. Instead of your assets becoming the assets of an heir, who then later passes those on to someone outside of your control, a trust ensures that the final destination of the assets is one you would approve of. Whether it is a charity or a state university, you can determine where any and all unused funds go when the trust finally ends.