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Wills and trusts can benefit people of any age and any wealth

Minnesota residents may have been saddened to learn of the death of Aretha Franklin, the music superstar behind such hits as "Respect" and "Think." However, they may want to avoid making one mistake Franklin did: failing to execute a will or trust. This is because if one dies without a will or trust, their estate will go through the public probate process, leading to a result that may not be of their liking.

Young parents in Minnesota should execute an estate plan

When young adults in Minnesota think of estate planning, they may envision themselves executing a will or trust after they have reached an old age and have accumulated a lifetime of assets to pass on to their heirs. Some may have even given thought to what end-of-life care they want through a health care proxy, and who they want making decisions on their behalf should they become incapacitated. However, estate planning isn't just for the old. Even young adults can benefit from executing a comprehensive estate plan. New parents especially should take into account one aspect of estate planning: naming a legal guardian and trustee for their child.

How can one avoid feuds between heirs regarding the family cabin?

Many Minnesotans are fortunate to own a cabin on a lake or in the North Woods where they can spend their weekends and vacations. A break from the rat-race can certainly be relaxing, and the family cabin is often just the place to do that.

What if one cannot find a deceased loved one's will or trust?

Some people in Saint Paul may have taken the wise step of creating a will or trust years ago, but as time marches on, what happens to these documents? Are they in a safe deposit box? Are they being held by an attorney? Were they simply stashed away in a filing cabinet in the home office?

Why are revocable trusts a useful estate planning tool?

Some people in Saint Paul may have executed a will and think that their estate planning duties are done. After all, the will specifies who will inherit what once the testator dies, so what more is needed? While a will can certainly accomplish that goal, it will have to go through the time-consuming, public, and costly probate process before the person's assets can be distributed to their heirs. Therefore, those who want to avoid probate and keep their financial information private may want to consider executing a trust, either in place of or in addition to, a will.

The world of trusts is wide, with many choices to consider

Many people in Minnesota may have a will, but they may not know much about how a trust works and how it will benefit them. Trusts can be an integral part of a well-rounded estate plan. The following are some types of trusts that Minnesotans may want to consider executing.

What requirements must be met to execute a will?

The New Year is here and people across Minnesota are making their New Year's resolutions for 2018. While some may be looking to change a personal habit in their lives or to meet certain items on their "bucket list," in general, most New Year's resolutions deal with the here and now. However, one thing they may not think of, but that could affect not only their future, but the futures of their loved ones is estate planning.

Contribute to a favorite cause through a charitable trust

Many people in Saint Paul have a favorite charity, whether it is a school, a museum, a hospital or a non-profit organization. In fact, Charity Navigator reports nationwide that, in 2016, almost $400 billion was given to charities. While some people simply write a check or give supplies to their favorite charity during their lifetime, others choose to set up a charitable trust to benefit their favorite charity after they pass on.

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St. Paul, MN 55101

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