Spiro J. Verras Blog

Tuesday, January 4, 2022

Can I Avoid Probate by Using a Revocable Trust?

A revocable trust is named so because it can be easily altered, amended, or, of course, revoked. This flexibility is one of the many appealing features of a revocable trust and its benefits make it an attractive addition to many estate plans. To establish a revocable trust, the trust settlor, or grantor, creates the trust and funds it. The trust is then managed by the trustee for the benefit of the trust beneficiaries and in accordance with the terms set forth in the governing trust document. One of the key benefits of a revocable trust is that it will avoid probate.

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Tuesday, January 4, 2022

Can You Fund a Trust With Out of State Property?

To establish a trust, the trust “settlor” transfers property into the trust to be managed by the “trustee” appointed by the settlor. The trustee is charged with holding trust property for the trust beneficiaries as well as administering the trust according to the terms set forth by the settlor. A person may choose to create a trust for a number of reasons. For instance, if someone has minor children, the children would not be able to directly inherit from their estate. By creating a trust, the children’s inheritance is protected until they reach the age of majority and can receive the inheritance directly.
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Sunday, November 28, 2021

Things to Know Before Executing a Will

If you do not yet have a will in place, there is no time like the present to execute a legally sound, strong will that will help preserve your legacy and protect a brighter future for your loved ones. While putting a will in place is too important to put off, there are also some things you should know about and consider prior to executing a will in order to help ensure it accurately reflects your goals and wishes.

Things to Know Before Executing a Will

While not the only thing a will can accomplish, one of its main features is often how a person’s property is to be distributed upon death.

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Sunday, November 28, 2021

What Clauses Should You Include in a Revocable Trust?

A revocable trust is a useful estate planning benefit with a variety of potential benefits. Not only can it work to avoid the time consuming and expensive probate process, but it can also help you avoid guardianship court as well as provide asset protection for your beneficiaries and protection for beneficiaries with special needs. Furthermore, it can give you control over how your assets are spent by beneficiaries even after you have long since passed away.

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Wednesday, October 20, 2021

What Can Qualifying Distributions from a Special Needs Trust Be Used For?

For those with disabilities or loved ones with special needs, a special needs trust can be an invaluable legal tool to add to an estate plan. A special needs trust, when properly structured, will provide supplemental benefits to the trust beneficiary with special needs without the assets held in the trust risking disqualification from need-based government benefits such as Medicaid and SSI. Trustees and trust administrators must be very careful in how and when trust distributions are made. Improper distributions can end up jeopardizing the beneficiaries’ continued receipt of government benefits. So, what can qualifying distributions from a special needs trust be used for?

What Can Qualifying Distributions from a Special Needs Trust Be Used For?

A special needs trust is also referred to as a “supplemental needs trust.

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Wednesday, October 13, 2021

The Importance of a Durable Power of Attorney

The difficult truth that all of us could really benefit from confronting is the fact that all of us are subject to unpredictable twists and turns in life. We don’t really like to think about this as it means there is only a certain level of control we have over our own lives and that can be very scary, to say the least. The truth remains, however, that none of us are immune to some difficult curve balls thrown our way. Even those of us who are young and in great health can still face a sudden, devastating medical prognosis or be the victim in a debilitating accident. These are things that are largely beyond our control.

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Wednesday, September 22, 2021

Summer Move? Update Your Estate Plan Right Away!

Hopefully summer time was filled with new adventures and time with loved ones. For many, summer adventures may have included moving. An often overwhelming endeavor, so much usually needs to be accomplished before, during, and after a move. Keeping it all straight can be a lot and some important things may fall by the wayside. Whether it has fallen by the wayside or you were not even aware that it needed to be done in the first place, be sure to update your

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Wednesday, September 8, 2021

What Is a SLAT?

Estate planning is about so much more than a will, although that can be an important part of an estate plan. Trusts, for instance, may be much of a mystery to most, but remain valuable legal tools when properly implemented in the right estate plan. Trust types and purposes, however, can widely vary and it can be overwhelming trying to figure out what the right fit for your individual circumstances may be.

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Tuesday, August 24, 2021

What Is the New Estate Tax Bill Senator Bernie Sanders is Proposing?

Have you heard the buzz about the “For the 99.5% Act”? It is a bill that was introduced by Senator Bernie Sanders back in March and it has had people talking. This is because, while the bill has not yet passed, it stands to have a substantial impact on many people if it does go through. If passed, the changes made in the Act would likely become effective by the end of the year. Now is the time to plan accordingly.
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Friday, August 20, 2021

What Causes Delays in Probate Proceedings?

Following in the wake of a loved one’s death, probate is an often dreaded process. The court supervised process of administering and distributing a person’s estate, probate is notoriously complicated, as well as time-consuming and expensive. Beneficiaries of the estate must wait until the personal representative of the estate has managed and inventoried all estate assets, notified and paid all creditors of the estate, and other tasks before estate assets can be cleared for distribution.
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Monday, July 19, 2021

What Goes on During Probate?

Have you heard of probate? It is the court-supervised process that involves the gathering, management, and distribution of a deceased individual’s assets. As you may have heard that many people look for ways to try and avoid probate because it has come to be known as costly and time consuming, you may be curious as to what is actually involved in the probate process. We will talk about that in more detail here.
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