The COVID-19 pandemic illuminates the need for planning. Attentive estate planning is one of the most vital things you can do for yourself and your family. Of course, no one wants to think about this topic and it’s understandable. However, once you have something in place you will feel a sense of relief, especially in times of crisis.
Even if you already have documents in place, it is important to review them periodically and update them as needed. Every Estate Plan is unique, but the mistakes people make when executing them are more or less the same.
Below is a list of the most common mistakes and issues in Estate Planning:
Just because you have signed your Will or your Trust, it does not mean you’re done. Many people establish a trust but make the mistake of never funding it,unfortunately defeating the purpose of having a trust. Retitling your assets into the name of your trust is an essential task. Some things, like your tangible property, can be taken care of with a simple assignment. Bank accounts usually need to be retitled into the name of your trust. An attorney can provide you with appropriate steps that your bank will be familiar with. Real property such as your home is a little more complicated and requires a Deed. In Michigan, we often use a Ladybird Deed. It holds your home in your individual name or in the name of you and your spouse until your death(s), and then transfers it into your revocable trust.
At Galloway and Collens, we can help you establish or update your estate plan. In this time of social distancing and stay-at-home, we can still meet with you. We are meeting our clients by phone and video conferencing. We can prepare your plan and, under the Governor’s executive order allowing remote witnessing and remote notarization, sign your Last Will and Testament, Revocable Trust, Patient Advocate Designation and Durable Power of Attorney by way of a remote signing. We want to bring you peace of mind in these trying times.
Our law firm is ready to help. Contact the real estate and estate planning attorneys at Galloway and Collens, PLLC.