How Does a Pour-Over Will Work?
A pour-over will is designed to take any assets that you have remaining when you die and transfer them into a previously established trust. Without this kind of will, these assets would have to be distributed through the probate process, which means that the court decides where these assets go based on familial relationships. This happens even if you had already made an estate plan that distributes your other assets.
This can be irritating for a few reasons. The probate process can take a lot of time and does not guarantee that your assets go to who you wanted them to go to. This process can also end up being quite expensive. As an added bonus, it is likely to cause fighting between your beneficiaries. A pour-over will can help eliminate these potential headaches.
What Kind of Trust Can Be Used with a Pour-Over Will?
A pour-over will can be paired with a revocable or irrevocable trust. A revocable trust is often used by those with smaller estates and it gives you full control over the assets within for the rest of your life. An irrevocable trust is often used for larger estates. A trustee is in control of this trust and its assets, and you cannot go back in and change the terms yourself.
Revocable and irrevocable trusts can both be used with a pour-over will. If you have items that you did not place in your trust, whether accidentally or on purpose, the assets will be transferred to the trust and distributed to the correct beneficiaries.
How Long Does it Take to Distribute Assets with a Pour-Over Will?
Distributing assets that were transferred into a trust using a pour-over will can take a little longer to make their way into the correct hands. However, even with the bureaucracy involved here, this is going to take less time than it would take to get your remaining assets distributed to your beneficiaries through the probate process. This can also cost less money and save your family members some serious hassle.
Consult an Estate Planning Attorney
Crafting a comprehensive, legally-binding estate plan on your own can be quite difficult. So contact Herting Law, PLLC and schedule an appointment with our experienced attorneys. We can help you find the wills, trusts, and other options that make it easy to ensure that your beneficiaries are taken care of after you are gone.