Leaving one's property to one's heirs and beneficiaries in Maryland is more than a way to provide for one's loved ones after one's death; it is a way to preserve one's legacy. Yet many people neglect to create an estate plan, which could result in a lengthy and emotionally charged probate proceeding.
Creating a will or a trust are two different ways to distribute one's assets after one's death. In a will, a person names the heirs who will receive his or her assets. This can include personal property, such as jewelry and antiques, as well as more intangible assets, such as stocks and bank accounts. In a trust, a person can name beneficiaries who will receive the creator's property and assets upon his or her death. As we discussed on this blog previously, some trusts are irrevocable, meaning they cannot be changed during the creator's lifetime. Other trusts are revocable, meaning the creator has the option to alter them if necessary. Trusts can be useful, because they bypass the probate process.
Creating an estate plan can take some work, but, fortunately, help is available. An attorney may be able to walk his or her client through the process of creating an estate plan, keeping the creator's goals in mind. Seeking the help of an attorney can give a person the peace of mind that his or her estate plan will be sound and that his or her wishes will be made clear.
Estate planning can be important to people of all ages and of all income levels. Attorney Angela Hansen has helped many clients through the estate planning process. Her webpage on estate planning may provide more information to Maryland residents who are interested in creating a will or a trust.