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Wills

A will is your most basic estate-planning document. A will spells out your wishes, including who receives your assets. You can specify if the assets are distributed immediately or over a period of time through a trust. If you have minor children, you can name who becomes legal guardian for them. You can name the executor of your estate—the executor makes sure the will is executed according to your instructions. Remember, not all assets pass through the direction of the will. If the asset is owned jointly, has a named beneficiary, or has a “payable on death” title, the asset will not pass through the direction of the will.

Trusts

There are many different types of trusts, and they can be complex to set up and execute. However, a trust can be a very flexible and advantageous means to transfer your assets in the future. Most trusts also provide current benefits, such as tax deferral and deductions. Unlike a will, a trust will avoid probate upon your death. To learn more about trusts and how they may benefit you, please consult a qualified estate planning attorney that specializes in these matters.