Estate planning is the act of preparing for the transfer of a person’s wealth and assets after his or her death. Assets, life insurance, pensions, investment accounts, real estate, cars, personal belongings, and debts are all part of one’s estate. An estate plan must be written, signed, and notarized. In Idaho it also needs to be witnessed by two neutral parties.
Many people think that they don’t need to do any sort of estate planning, and they think that the existence of a simple will can transfer their assets at the time of their death. However, wills and trusts are simply legal documents that express the decedent’s intentions for how their estate should pass. In order for this to occur in most instances a probate needs to be filed which will seek court approval of the distribution, of the assets and debts. Depending on the type of assets there is also the possibility of filing a small estate affidavit which can transfer up to $100,000.00 worth of assets without filing a probate. This is often used if the decedent’s primary asset is a bank account.
Felton & Felton Attorneys works with many estate plans in Twin Falls, ID and the surrounding areas. We would be glad to offer a free consultation.