Teachers Are Preparing Wills and Trusts in Record Numbers. We Can Help.

Teachers Are Preparing Wills and Trusts in Record Numbers. We Can Help.

Patty Lamberti
 | 

Here's a sentence we never thought we'd write: Teachers across the country have become so worried about the safety of going back to school in the fall that a growing number of them are creating wills, according to CNN

 

Teachers in districts that aren't requiring face masks or social distancing are particularly concerned. The Orange County Board of Education, for example, announced this week that students will return in the fall. Masks will not be required, nor will social distancing be enforced. 

 

Many teachers are using what remains of summer to create wills and trusts so that if the worst happens, their loved ones will be taken care of. 

 

If there is a silver lining in any of this, it's this - estate planning is always a good idea. 

 

Death and debilitating illnesses can strike at any time - with or without a pandemic.

 

We want to inform teachers, and everyone, about the basics of estate planning, and how Court Buddy can help you for a very affordable rate. 

 

There are differences between wills, trusts, living wills and living trusts.

 

You should probably have some combination of options, not just one. Here's a guide:
 

Wills

Most people are familiar with wills, since we've seen so many movies and TV shows about families fighting over the legitimacy of wills (If you haven't seen "Knives Out" yet, you should!)

 

Wills kick into action after you die. 

 

There are two types of wills:

  • A last will and testament is read after your death, and outlines the way you want your property distributed. It can also include language about who will care for minors or dependants. 
  • A living will includes your wishes regarding life support

Pros: A will outlines who will receive your property upon your death.  It also can specify who you want to care for any dependents. You can state your funeral wishes too.

 

Cons: Wills must go through probate court, which takes time and will cost your loved ones money. Wills cannot specify your wishes if you become incapacitated. Wills are public (so your neighbors can eventually find out what you owned). 

 

Trusts

A trust is like a safe that you only give one person the combination to open. 

 

Once you place property, money and other stuff in the trust, the trustee (the person with the combination)  manages them. There are different types of trusts: 

  • A living revocable trust becomes effective immediately, while you are still alive. When you become incapacitated or die, the trustee takes over. You can change your wishes in the trust at any point - adding people, changing ownership and so on. 
  • An irrevocable trust cannot be changed after it is signed, except in rare circumstances. The only benefit to this type of trust is so that your heirs can avoid the estate tax. 

Pros: You can begin passing on property while you are still alive. A trust passes outside of probate court, which saves time and money. A trust can remain private, so nosy neighbors will never know your wealth. 

 

Cons: You cannot appoint guardians for dependents in a trust. Trusts are not as simple to establish. 

 

We know that a teacher's salary isn't as high as it should be. Reach out to us for help to decide what type of estate planning is best for you and your loved ones. And stay safe. 


 
This article is intended to convey generally useful information only and does not constitute legal advice. Any opinions expressed are solely those of the author, not LawChamps.
Patty Lamberti

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