Minnesota adults regardless of their age and health should consider making a living will. While many people think of becoming incapacitated as something that will only happen when they are older, an accident or a sudden illness can leave a person of any age unable to express their wishes about their medical treatment.
Estate planning is a crucial component of a wealth protection plan in Minnesota. State laws will dictate the distribution of property in probate court if a will does not exist. Probate administration can be very expensive, and it offers no guarantees that the deceased's wishes will be honored. When creating an estate plan, it is important to avoid a few common mistakes that could prevent the plan from being carried out as intended.
A will is often the most important estate planning document for Minnesota residents, and there are times when it may make sense to update one. For instance, when an individual with an existing will gets married, the spouse does not necessarily become the main heir. Instead, state law may determine that the spouse will get half of the estate with parents or children getting the rest. Updating the will may also come in handy when remarrying or divorcing as this could impact who gets what assets under the current will.
For some Minnesota residents, establishing a trust may be a helpful if not essential part of their estate planning. Trusts fall into two basic categories: testamentary and living. Testamentary trusts, as established in the will itself, takes effect only after the death of the will's owner, known as a trustor. A living trust may be enacted while the trustor is still alive.
Estate planning is a complex process that is in some sense unique to each Minnesota resident. A person's family relationships and charitable choices have can have an enormous impact, and outlining how assets are distributed can be complicated. With so many factors to consider, there are many ways for a will to go wrong, and simply the act of naming beneficiaries has many pitfalls of which to be wary.
Individuals who are making a will and reside in or own property in Minnesota may wish to understand more about the probate process. After an individual's death, it may be necessary to settle the estate in court, and this process known as probate. Some wills must be filed in probate court, and once the assets are distributed and debts are settled, probate ends.
The term guardian refers to somebody who cares for an incapacitated person, known as a ward, in all or most personal matters. This could include simple things like what the ward will eat and wear, and it can cover more important decisions, like where the ward lives and what type of medical treatment he or she receives. The guardian must also make any decision about the ward's rehabilitation, training and education.
Estate planning is one of the most difficult things a Minnesota resident can do, but taking care of the details covered by such a plan can make a person's passing easier on those who remain. Wills are important for people of all ages, and can have an effect on how a person's property is divided after death.
Many people in Minnesota struggle over how to best handle their estates in a way that makes things easier for their heirs. Certain types of assets, such as life insurance benefits and retirement accounts, go to named beneficiaries. Homes that have a title with joint survivorship usually pass to the surviving owner. However, arrangements must be made for the distribution of other assets using either a will or revocable trust.
Minnesota's Transfer on Death Deed