The difference between probate and estate planning explained

The wealth you have amassed over decades should go to the right people after your death. That’s the crux of estate planning. Probate, on the other hand, refers to the administration of a will or trust. If you want a will and wish to discuss your wishes, you need to consider hiring a local law firm for advice. There are state laws applicable to estate planning, besides a few dos and don’ts. In this post, we are sharing the difference between probate and estate planning.

What is probate?

Simply put, probate is the validation of a trust or will. The executor will bring the document to the probate court. This is when the deceased had a will and mentioned everything on paper. The custodian will need to get the signature of witnesses to validate the document. If someone dies without creating a will, the judge will decide how the assets are distributed among heirs. Some assets cannot be passed on like others. For example, if the deceased had an insurance policy, only the beneficiary mentioned in the documents would get the assets. Also, if the deceased has debt, the assets will be first used to repay the creditors.

What exactly is Estate Planning?

If you opt for estate planning, you will typically work with an attorney who will explain the state laws in depth. There are certain things you cannot decide through a will. Your lawyer will ensure that your will is compliant and in sync with the laws. The attorney can also guide you on taxes and other costs. Life is unpredictable. If you end up in a situation where you are incapacitated or disabled, you can create a living will to determine if you wish to be kept on life support. You can decide everything about your assets through estate planning, and an attorney can help structure and execute the plan, especially if you want to leave assets to someone who cannot care for themselves.

It is a common myth that estate planning is meant for the rich. Each of us should consider every aspect of estate planning so that the assets end up with the right people. Also, it can keep the family together because beneficiaries will not argue after your death. To make the most of your options, talk to an attorney immediately. There is no perfect age for estate planning, and you can decide as and when you want – the Sooner, the better.

Vivek is a published author of Meidilight and a cofounder of Zestful Outreach Agency. He is passionate about helping webmaster to rank their keywords through good-quality website backlinks. In his spare time, he loves to swim and cycle. You can find him on Twitter and Linkedin.