Planning for the future can help avoid conflict

Many people in Hollidaysburg want to make sure that their family members are cared for after they pass away. Unfortunately, battles over the assets and estate left behind can consume money, time and emotional energy, and rivalries and conflicts can come to the forefront. This is a particular concern whenever there is long-standing conflict or even distance between family members or when blended families over multiple marriages and relationships are involved.

One way people can do their best to avoid future battles over inheritance theft is by making clear plans for their estate. An estate planning process includes the creation of documents like a last will and testament, in which a person can clearly state their intentions for the distribution of their assets. While a will can always be challenged, it is designed to help family members understand a person's wishes.

The distribution of assets after a person's death is handled in state probate court. The probate court appoints an executor or personal representative for the estate and verifies the will; every beneficiary has a right to a copy of the document. On the other hand, when a person dies without a will, the distribution of their assets is left to the state's guidelines for intestacy and can include shares being given to spouses, children or other relatives. In any case, the distribution of assets occurs after debts and taxes are paid from the estate.

By developing a will, trusts, powers of attorney and other key documents, a person can help make their plans for their assets clear while providing for their loved ones. An estate planning lawyer may work with a person to execute these documents and provide key advice on how to achieve the maximum benefit for one's heirs while lowering potential exposure to taxes, fees and delays.

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