A common question many people ask is what will happen to their money in the event of their passing. Read on to learn more about some of the documents you can create to ensure that your assets are transferred to the right hands.

What is a Will?

A will is a document that declares what should happen to your possessions after you pass. In a will, you may want to include assets such as real estate, bank accounts, securities, and items of personality. Many other items or wishes can be included in a will as well. For example, if you want to designate a portion of the money to charity, give a gift to a certain family member, or leave your favorite photograph to a friend, you can state that in your will. It is important to note that you should not put any funeral wishes in your will, as the will may not be read until after the funeral. This is one of the most important documents you can create when it comes to determining what will happen to your assets upon your death.

What is Transfer on Death?

To make sure your assets have a beneficiary designation, you can utilize either Transfer on Death or Payable on Death arrangements. These are arrangements that allow account designations for naming beneficiaries. These arrangements may allow you to avoid probate in the event of your passing. It is important to know that New York does not allow transfer-on-death deeds for the transfer of vehicle registrations or real estate, but it does allow Transfer on Death registrations for stocks and bonds.

What is Probate?

When a loved one passes, the probate process assesses the value of your loved one’s assets, satisfies any leftover debts and taxes, and gives the executor or the administrator of the will specific authorization to begin distributing the remaining estate and its assets to all the corresponding beneficiaries and heirs. Probate, ultimately, is designed to ensure that the decedent’s will is carried out as he or she would have intended.

If you have any questions or concerns regarding the estate planning process, reach out to our firm to speak with an experienced attorney.

Contact our Firm

The Lauterbach Law Firm is proud to serve clients throughout Rockland County who are faced with legal matters related to estate planning, real estate, foreclosure defense, landlord-tenant law, business law, and criminal defense. If you require the services of an experienced team of attorneys, contact The Lauterbach Law Firm today to schedule a consultation.