When starting an estate plan, one of the first things that people realize is that it is usually best to do everything one can in order to avoid probate. Probate can be a very costly process, taking assets away from the loved ones who you want to inherit your estate. The probate process can also be very lengthy, taking months, or in complex situations, years.
The act of devising an estate plan often helps people to avoid the unfavorable process of probate. However, in order to do this in a lucrative way, time must be invested in learning about how the law works in regard to estate planning and avoiding probate in Massachusetts.
Avoiding probate through an estate plan
One of the easiest and most common ways to avoid probate is through joint property ownership. When joint accounts or joint titles on assets are held, it means that the survivor will always automatically assume ownership without any action being taken.
If owning joint accounts for certain assets is not possible, trusts can also be created. Revocable living trusts are often ideal for the avoidance of probate, because you have the flexibility of being able to terminate the trust at any point during your lifetime. However, when the trust is set up, the assets held in the trust become the property of the trustee. In this way, the probate process is avoided completely.
If you are starting to plan your estate in Massachusetts and want to avoid probate, it is a good idea to take into account your financial situation when considering estate planning solutions.