This is the time of year when many Michigan residents are finding out whether or not they have taken the right approach to tax planning. Withholding too much or too little in taxes from a paycheck will often make the difference between receiving a refund and owing money to Uncle Sam. But what about long-term tax planning? How do Michigan residents make sure that they have the right structures in place for protecting inheritance and guaranteeing the distribution of their estate in the manner they desire?
Many of our previous posts have stressed the importance of comprehensive and detailed estate planning. For most people, the question marks that can pop up from dying intestate are just too great of a concern to ignore. However, if there are some among our Michigan readers who have taken the first step and actually constructed an estate plan, it is important to remember that life-changing events can happen - and your will should sometimes be changed as well.
Any of our Michigan readers who are familiar with previous posts know that sometimes estate planning can be complicated. When the idea of trusts is thrown in, many probably think that things are getting really complicated.
Michigan residents may be aware of the challenges involved when a person inherits assets. For example, discussions of recent high-profile celebrity deaths often quickly turn to the question of who will raise the kids and get the millions. Most of these celebrities even had wills, but that does not necessarily prevent subsequent disputes over the content of those wills.
Many readers in Detroit and throughout Oakland County are responsible for protecting the assets of vulnerable adults who suffer from Alzheimer's disease or some other form of dementia. These older adults are often especially vulnerable to being financially exploited, and if loved ones find out that undue influence or coercion has impacted the writing of a will, then the need for a will contest or some other form of probate litigation may arise.
Residents in Oakland County who are involved in estate planning may be wondering if living trusts offer any kind of asset protection.