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Wills, Trusts, and Estate Planning

Create Your Will with the Devolder Law Firm

An adult handing a large key to a childIf you don’t have a will at the time of your death, the state of Florida has already decided how your property should be divided among your family — regardless of what your actual relationship with them is like or what your intentions and wishes are.

If you have a problem with this scenario, then a will is the solution. A will describes your intentions and wishes for how your property should be distributed once you’ve died. With a will, you can give property to family, friends, charitable organizations — almost anyone. A will gives you the freedom to protect the ones you care about most, even after you’re gone.

Even the simplest of wills, though, needs to be carried out in a specific way in order to be binding. The smallest of mistakes can void an otherwise valid will, which can lead to your desires being ignored.

In order to make sure that your intentions and wishes are carried out how you want them, let us work with you to make a document that protects the ones you love. If you already have a will, you may wish to change it, and we can make sure that your updated will remains legally binding and ensures your vision is carried out.

About Living Wills

A living will is a different type of document from the will discussed above, but it’s just as important for making sure your wishes are known and honored. A living will deals specifically with your health care and how you want to live out the end of your life, and it allows you to decide what kind of life-prolonging procedures medical personnel can use on you in an emergency. Like a will for property, a living will takes the burden and stress off your loved ones in trying to figure out what you might want; this way, they already know.

Both a will and a living will give you the power to have our wishes carefully carried out, and they can grant the peace of mind that comes with knowing exactly what will happen to you and your estate at the end of your life.

What About Trusts?

A trust is an estate planning tool that you can start using today. By putting your property into a living trust where you are the trustee and someone else is the beneficiary, you still have access to all of your property, but after you die and a new trustee is named, the beneficiary acquires the property according to the terms of the trust. This is an excellent tool for designating how the beneficiary should use the property or money after your death.

For example, if you want to pay for your grandchild’s college education, you can form a trust. If you create the trust during your lifetime, you can use the funds as needed or you can disperse them to your grandchild (the beneficiary) to pay for their education. After you die, though, the new trustee can only disperse the money to your grandchild to pay for their college education. If you include certain provisions in your trust, like a spendthrift provision, then even your grandchild’s creditors won’t be able to access the money.

This situation is much different than if you used a will. If you made a gift of a certain sum of money to your grandchild in your will, then they would be free to use that money however they want, even if the will stipulates that the money is to be used only for education. Ultimately, this means your wishes may not be carried out.

A trust is a great device that you can use along with a will to comprehensively plan your estate and provide for the future of your loved ones. Like a will, it can be simple or complicated depending on your assets and your goals. Either way, though, a trust — just like a will — must be carried out in a very specific manner or it may not be binding, which could lead to your most important desires being ignored.

Contact the Devolder Law Firm for Help with Wills and Trusts in New Tampa, Wesley Chapel, and the Tampa Area

Whether you require a simple will or a complicated trust to meet your needs, the attorneys at the Devolder Law Firm will learn about you as a person, treat you as a member of our family, and find the estate planning solution that works best for you. As a law firm that strives to meet all the legal needs that suburban families face, we’re also able to handle other legal matters that relate to estate planning, including the sale and purchase of real estate.

To schedule your initial consultation with us, please call our offices at (813) 724-3880 or fill out the contact form.

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