Everyone in Washington State knows that mortality is real and someday they will die. Despite this fact, a great many people still have not taken the steps to create an estate plan. For some, this might be out of a fear of facing their humanity as people are often raised to fear death. For others, the avoidance of making an estate plan can be due to a lack of knowledge about where to start. This is understandable as there are many options when it comes to making a good estate plan.
Residents in Washington State who have gone through the process of creating a thorough estate plan do not generally eagerly await the opportunity to do it again. This can be a very time-consuming experience and an emotional one as some very important decisions should be made and conversations should be had. However, the fact of the matter is that any estate plan should be kept updated as life changes often dictate this.
People in Seattle are encouraged to create an estate plan early on in their adult lives. At the same time, they are also told to revisit that plan as their circumstances change. Often, you may find yourself party to an estate whose terms (at least those stipulated in what is perceived to be your family member or friend's will) run contrary to what the decedent told you directly. In such a case, there may be an updated will indicating those wishes. When faced with this scenario, many have come to us here at Riach Gese Jacobs PLLC asking whether or not their loved one's initial will was sufficiently revoked.
When you are party to an estate in Seattle, it may be easy to feel as though you have little control over your interests. At first glance, it may appear that you indeed do not given that it is the estate executor who handles its administration. Yet your interests must be managed exactly in the manner that the settlor specified in their will. This means that the executor essentially works for you and the estate's other beneficiaries. Many in your same position have come to us here at Riach Gese Jacobs PLLC in the past worried that the estates controlling their interests were being poorly managed. If you share the same concern, you may be happy to learn that you may be able to have an executor removed from their role.
One of the concerns weighing on those tasked with administering the estates of their family members or friends is the issue of taxes. Often it is assumed that an estate will automatically owe tax, yet that is not always the case. Indeed, according to information shared by the Internal Revenue Service, only 33,000 estate tax returns are projected to be filed in 2019. Given that the United Nations World Population Prospects reports shows that over 7,400 Americans die every day, one can see just how few estates actually have to deal with the estate tax.
Disinheriting a child is not something to be taken lightly. Parents must enter into the decision fully informed to prevent serious legal battles after they're gone. Removing a child from one's will can also have lasting effects on a person's relationship, which is why The Balance recommends the following tips.
During the estate planning process, you may wonder whether your survivors will have to endure probate after you are gone. At Riach Gese Jacobs, we understand your concern about a lengthy legal proceeding that may prevent your heirs from receiving their bequests in a timely fashion or even give rise to litigation. Fortunately, the state of Washington has taken steps to simplify the process, meaning that probate may not be necessary to the administration of your estate.
When someone passes away, friends and family members of the deceased often experience heavy emotions. On top of the loss, there are a number of important matters that must be handled. The estate executor, sometimes referred to as the estate administrator, is responsible for making sure these matters are resolved. In some cases, the deceased will name an executor in the last will and testament. If the deceased did not appoint one, however, the state may appoint someone to carry out those duties.
Most people in Washington have some type of debt when they pass away. This means that the responsibility for the payment usually has to go somewhere. However, you would probably not have to pay personally.
It certainly may be disappointing if, after experiencing the death of a loved one in Seattle whose estate you anticipate being a party to, you discover that you are not included in their will (or at least not the to the degree you might have thought you would be). You wanting to question the validity of the will in such a scenario may be justified (particularly if the decedent had previously indicated you would be, but then ultimately were not). However, if the will contains a no contest clause, you challenging could affect any interest you already may in the estate. Many in this very situation have come to us here at Riach Gese Jacobs PLLC asking what to do.